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  1. Anthony G Williams

    Sci-Fi The Martian (2015)

    Film: The Martian (2015) The Martian is one of those films with a simple and straightforward plot about which not a lot can be said. There are obvious comparisons with Gravity, the 2013 film which also concentrated on a single astronaut's efforts to get home after a disaster in space. That film...
  2. Anthony G Williams

    Sci-Fi Films: The Man from U.N.C.L.E. (2015), and Predestination (2014)

    Films: The Man from U.N.C.L.E. (2015), and Predestination (2014) During the late 1960s lighthearted spy films and TV series were in vogue, the blend of adventure, glamour and comedy proving very appealing. A good example is the series of feature films starring Dean Martin as agent Matt Helm...
  3. Anthony G Williams

    Sci-Fi The Quatermass Xperiment (1955)

    Film: The Quatermass Xperiment (1955) A few weeks ago, in my review of Interzone 262, I devoted a paragraph to the Quatermass stories, which originated in BBC TV serials in the early 1950s. Coincidentally one of the spin-off feature films was shown on UK TV recently, so of course I had to watch...
  4. Anthony G Williams

    Action San Andreas (2015)

    Film: San Andreas (2015) Hollywood disaster movies of recent years seem to be increasingly formulaic, and San Andreasis no exception, ticking all of the usual boxes: Some disaster or other occurs, allowing the special effects people to try and outdo previous films in the scale and realism of...
  5. Anthony G Williams

    Sci-Fi Films: Tomorrowland (2015), and Kingsman (2015)

    Films: Tomorrowland (2015), and Kingsman (2015) An odd couple of films here, linked by nothing except that I saw them in quick succession. Tomorrowland (subtitled A World Beyond) is frankly a sprawling mess of a film which takes a long time to get going and then doesn't seem to know where it...
  6. Anthony G Williams

    Sci-Fi The Core (2003)

    Film: The Core (2003) This is one disaster movie that I missed when it first came around. It begins with various mysterious events connected with electromagnetic disturbances. It is eventually realised that these events are all connected to one occurrence: the Earth's core has stopped rotating...
  7. Anthony G Williams

    Sci-Fi Ex Machina (2015)

    Film: Ex Machina (2015) Some time in the near future, Caleb (Domhnall Gleeson), a young IT expert, wins a prize: a week with his company's legendary and reclusive boss, Nathan (Oscar Isaac) at his remote summer estate in the mountains. When he arrives, he discovers that Nathan, who lives alone...
  8. Anthony G Williams

    Sci-Fi Frequencies (2013)

    Film: Frequencies (2013) I picked up a recommendation for this one from somewhere but couldn't recall what kind of story it was, so I watched Frequencies (also known as OXV: The Manual) without any expectations – and was rewarded with one of the most unusual, intriguing and enjoyable films I've...
  9. Anthony G Williams

    Sci-Fi Jupiter Ascending

    Film: Jupiter Ascending (2015) This film was produced, directed and written by the Wachowskis, best known for the Matrixtrilogy – which suggests that, while probably flawed, it should offer something different from the usual space opera. The basic plot of an ordinary girl who is elevated from...
  10. Anthony G Williams

    Sci-Fi Divergent (movie trilogy)

    Film: Insurgent (2015) The sequel to Divergent, reviewed here in February, this continues the series of films based on the trilogy by Veronica Roth. To quote from that review: The setting is a post-apocalyptic world in which civilisation is maintained in Chicago, kept separate from the...
  11. Anthony G Williams

    Films: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1, and The Maze Runner (2014)

    Films: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1, and The Maze Runner (2014) The third of four films based on Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games trilogy, Mockingjay Part 1 continues the story of a future dystopia in which Katniss Everdeen has unwillingly become the figurehead in a rebellion against the...
  12. Anthony G Williams

    Sci-Fi Lucy (2014)

    Film: Lucy (2014) The plot of this film initially seems like a standard "accidental superhero" story: heroine Lucy (Scarlett Johansson) receives a massive overdose of a new drug and acquires superpowers which enable her to gain revenge on those who have mistreated her. In reality, however...
  13. Anthony G Williams

    Sci-Fi Blade Runner (1982) & Blade Runner: 2049 (2017)

    Film: Blade Runner (The Final Cut, 2007) Blade Runner is one of the most famous SF movies ever made, but I had only seen the original 1982 cinema version, and that a long time ago. Several different versions have been made but in only one of them did director Ridley Scott have complete...
  14. Anthony G Williams

    Sci-Fi Cargo

    Film: Cargo (2009) Cargo is something of a novelty, a Swiss-made SF film with German dialogue translated via sub-titles. Don't let any of that put you off, though, it is worth watching. It is set 250 years from now, with the Earth abandoned as an ecological disaster area and the survivors of...
  15. Anthony G Williams

    Sci-Fi Jerome Bixby's The Man From Earth

    Film: The Man From Earth (2007) The Man From Earthis a 2007 film with a screenplay by Jerome Bixby. That name seemed familiar to me so I looked it up and was reminded that Bixby was a prolific SF short-story writer in the 1950s and 1960s, probably best known for the chilling "It's a Good Life"...
  16. Anthony G Williams

    Superheroes X-Men: Days Of Future Past (2014)

    Film: X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014) I have more or less kept up with the X-Men films (barring the odd offshoot) as it is one of the better fantasy series of recent times, so I ordered the DVD as soon as it became available. What follows has some minor spoilers so, if you insist on every...
  17. Anthony G Williams

    Sci-Fi Divergent (movie trilogy)

    Film: Divergent (2014) This one slipped past me when it appeared in cinemas a year ago and I only found out about it when I saw an advert for the sequel, due for release soon. I hadn't heard of the novels it was based on either until I looked them up, and discovered that the young author...
  18. Anthony G Williams

    Sci-Fi Ender's Game

    Film: Ender's Game (2013) I read Orson Scott Card's Ender's Game shortly after it first came onto the market some thirty years ago but I didn't rate it highly enough to keep on my shelves, so I haven't read it since. I could recall the broad outline of the story but remembered few details, so...
  19. Anthony G Williams

    Sci-Fi Edge Of Tomorrow (aka: Live. Die. Repeat.) (2014)

    Film: Edge of Tomorrow (2014) First, a warning: this review contains some spoilers, although probably no more than you'd gather from a trailer. If you don't like to know anything before seeing a film, then I'll just say that I recommend this one. Edge of Tomorrow (also known by the subtitle...
  20. Anthony G Williams

    Fantasy The Hobbit Trilogy

    Films: The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (2013), and The Battle of the Five Armies (2014) I reviewed Part 1 of The Hobbit in July this year, in which I said the following: Although I recalled the general plot outline of The Hobbit well enough most of the details were fuzzy, so you needn't...
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