Starring Jessica Chastain, Colin Farrell and John Malkovich; Ava is one of those films I watched to the very end for three reasons. Firstly because it’s Chastain, Farrell and Malkovich. Second, even though I wouldn’t call AVA good, I hoped to find something I’d like about it. Lastly, Each quarter managed to do just enough to hook me so I’d stay curious enough to want to find out how the next moments would unfold.
Directed by Tate Taylor; Chastain is Ava, a deadly assassin who works for a black ops organisation. While abroad on a high profile hit, things don’t go according to plan and soon our protagonist finds herself a target.
The main issue I found with Taylor’s film is the hugely underdeveloped story and dialogue. There are unfortunately next to zero impressively smart, surprising elements in Ava. A reality that made the movie feel like one of the most ‘basic’ action movies I’ve ever seen.
Even though the three leads can certainly act, none of it proved enough to save Ava. Everyone did the best they could with both the script and stunt direction. Yet, sadly, the action sequences much like the rest of the movie offer minimal delights.
The parts I did enjoy most are the last interactions between Malkovich and Farrell’s characters. It was also great to watch Farrell use his natural Irish accent in a movie again. The last time I saw him do that was inIn Bruges (2008).
If you’re extremely curious about Ava, do what you must. Otherwise, maybe watch Atomic Blonde (2017) instead.
In new crime / thriller Arkansas, Liam Hemsworth and Clark Duke play two criminals who work for Frog (Vince Vaughn), a drug kingpin they’ve never met. When a deal goes horribly wrong, deadly consequences and a meeting with Frog himself suddenly seems far more likely.
Co-written / directed by Clark Duke; additional key cast includes John Malkovich, Vivica A. Fox, Michael Kenneth Williams and Brad William Henke.
The main reason for my interest is John Malkovitch. The second is because this looks like a ‘reckless fools doing crime‘ type of movie that could also be fun. The kind of fun that’s reminiscent of Lock Stock And Two Smocking Barrels (1998). We’ll see what happens next month.
Patrick Muldoon, Eden Brolin, Jacob Zachar, Jeff Chase, Barry Primus, Juston Street, Jared Bankens and Adina Galupa also star.
Arkansas Release Dates: May 5th, 2020 (US) on Apple, Amazon, On Demand Platforms, Blu-ray and DVD.
Dan Gilroy, the director of my favourite Jake Gyllenhaal movie Nightcrawler (2014) is back with new crime / fantasy film, Velvet Buzzsaw.
Starring Gyllenhaal, John Malkovich, Toni Collette, Billy Magnussen and set in Miami Beach, Florida, it all begins after a number of art lovers help themselves to a series of paintings by an unknown artist. Soon enough, a supernatural force begins to enact revenge to punish all those involved for their greed…
I’m in for Gyllenhaal’s performance – and who knows, maybe I’ll love what he does in this movie as much as I appreciate his great work in Nightcrawler. I’ll also keep my fingers crossed in hopes that the whole experience isn’t nightmare inducing. At time of writing, Velvet Buzzsaw isn’t categorised as horror, so there is hope.
Zawe Ashton, Natalia Dyer, Rene Russo, Daveed Diggs, Peter Gadiot and Tom Sturridge also star.