Posts Tagged ‘Fast & Furious 6’


Screen Shot 2014-10-10 at 3.24.59 PMFilm critic Richard Crouse sits down with CP24’s Nathan Downer to look at some of the new movies out this week, including “The Judge,” “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” and “Dracula Untold.”

Watch the whole thing HERE!


Screen Shot 2014-10-10 at 10.20.39 AM “Canada AM” film critic Richard Crouse reviews “The Judge,” “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day,” and “Dracula Untold.”

Watch the whole thing HERE!




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DRACULA UNTOLD: 3 STARS. “bigger and louder than any other Dracula movie.”

Dracula-Untold-IMAX-Poster-Crop-850x560Popular culture has not been kind to bloodsuckers. No, I don’t mean agents. I mean vampires. For more than a century Dracula and his undead brothers and sisters were viewed with equal parts fear and loathing. Only seen under the cloak of night they were the greatest villains of Horrorwood. But lately liberties have been taken with Bram Stoker’s myth. Now they dazzle in the daylight and drink synthetic blood. There’s even a new movie, “Dracula Untold,” that casts fangface as a romantic action hero.

It’s enough to make a vampire purist go batty.

In the new film Transylvanian Prince Vlad Tepes (Luke Evans), a man so fond of stakes and staking he earned the nickname Vlad the Impaler. has turned a new leaf. He’s now a family man who dropped “The Impaler” part off his resume and lives a quiet life with his wife Mirena (Sarah Gadon) and son (Art Parkinson).

Eastern Europe is under siege, however, and Vlad is forced to do almost anything to save his family and his kingdom from the invading Turkish mobs. Anything and everything, and since this is the 15th century in a Peter Jackson-esque world where supernatural creatures (Charles Dance) live in caves, he makes a Faustian deal with an ancient master vampire in exchange for the awesome power to command bats and vanquish his enemies. “Men do not fear swords,” Vlad says, “they fear monsters.”

The old jagged-tooth ghoul gives him “dominion over the night and all its creatures” along with self-healing—“That’s useful,” Vlad says.—and other vampiric attributes that will help him annihilate the interlopers. Best of all after three days he’ll turn back into a human… that is if he can resist the overwhelming urge to drink human blood.

“Dracula Untold” is a stylish reimagining of… something. It’s not the Dracula myth, despite what the title says. Let’s just call it “Vampire Untold” or “Dracula Nah-uh” and dismiss the idea that its in anyway Bela Lugosi approved.

“Dracula Untold” is bigger and louder than any Dracula movie to come before it—Vlad doesn’t just turn into a bat, he turns into a colony of bats—and contains an arch melodramatic feel that wouldn’t be out of place in a Hammer horror, but it’s not particularly scary. The real horror here is the muddy visuals in the action scenes that often make it difficult to see who is impaling who. Dracula may live in a world of darkness but apparently so does director Gary Shore. It’s too bad because there are some nice visual flourishes. For instance a fight scene shot through the reflection of a sword’s blade is inventive and eye catching.

“Dracula Untold” doesn’t totally suck despite playing like the set-up to the inevitable modern day sequel they pitch in the film’s coda. Luke Evan (he of “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” and “Fast & Furious 6”) gives Dracula something new—vulnerability—and Sarah Gadon makes Bella’s love for Edward look like the high school crush it really was. Vampire fans might not find it bloodsuckery enough, but fans of the high style action of “300” may enjoy.


Fast-and-Furious-6I don’t know how much “Fast & Furious 6” cost to make. The huge cast must be raking in substantial paychecks by now and you’d need to be a mathematician to figure out the number of cars they destroy. Heck, just the screeching tire sound effect budget alone was probably worth more than

The new movie is the culmination of the previous five. A greatest hits—literally, there are some wild crashes here—featuring characters from most of the films in the series. All the old faves are back—drug lord Braga (John Ortiz), Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) and even Letty Ortiz (Michelle Rodriguez), who was presumed dead in the last installment—in a story that doesn’t make a great deal of sense, but if it was supposed to make sense it would be called “Sedans and Sensibility” or maybe “Of Miatas and Men.”

No, this is a “Fast & Furious” movie that plays fast and furious with believability but still delivers a pretty good time at the movies.

Picking up where “Fast Five” left off, when we first meet Dom Toretto (Vin Diesel) and Company they are wealthy outlaws, living in countries with no extradition to the United States. Their quiet lives are disrupted when a gang led by super villain Owen Shaw (Luke Evans) stages a daring raid that threatens international security. A task force led by Hobbs (Johnson) calls on the expertise of the furious fugitives to help bring Shaw to justice. It becomes personal for Dom when he discovers that his former girlfriend Letty is working with Shaw.

These movies are review proof. If you liked the other movies in the franchise, you’ll like this one. It’s faster and furiouser than the others, so drenched in machismo—the women are even macho—you can almost smell the Brut cologne, but other than that it is essentially the same film.

It can be broken down to essentially this: Swagger interrupted by a snappy one liner, a wild car chase, a fight scene, repeat.

The themes of loyalty and friendship are still at the forefront, usually expressed in very dramatic dialogue delivered in the best teen noir style by Diesel who speaks every line as though he is dragging it through sandpaper but that wouldn’t mean much if cars don’t become air born before they burst into flames.

“Fast & Furious 6” puts the pedal to the metal one more time in a franchise that will eventually run out of gas, but for now is still running on fumes.