Author Lance Harris

Editor's pick

Beguiling Beasts defies analysis

American indie hit Beasts of the Southern Wild is set in a place so magical that it could be straight from a fable, though it is also as grounded as the New Orleans lashed by Katrina a few years ago. It’s a delta community cut off from the rest of the world by the levee and in danger of sinking beneath saltwater every time bad weather

Editor's pick

Savages breaks Oliver Stone’s bad streak

Pity the small enterprise pitted against a larger rival muscling in on its turf. Especially when the business is selling the best weed in California and the competition is a ruthless Mexican cartel whose anticompetitive behaviour includes torture and murder

Editor's pick

Sugar Man: departing from reality

There was a time when the spacey melody of Rodriguez’s Sugar Man hung permanently in the air at university digs around SA, as much a part of the atmosphere as the curling cigarette smoke and the pungent scent of incense. More than The Rolling Stones or The Sex Pistols, Rodriguez was the soundtrack of rebellion for liberal young

Editor's pick

The gory and the geriatric

The Expendables, Sylvester Stallone’s attempt to round up the great action stars of the 1980s for a last hurrah, sounded fantastic on paper but fell flat in execution. With the sequel, Sly and his friends from the Beverly Hills Home for Retired Action Heroes set things right by giving us the Dirty Dozen-style ensemble action film for

Editor's pick

Don’t let these Sleeping Dogs lie

Things didn’t look particularly good for Sleeping Dogs just a year and a half ago when the game was brutally cancelled by Activision because it was “just not good enough” to compete with the Grand Theft Autos of the world. Saving the game from oblivion

Editor's pick

Vertigo’s dizzying climb to greatness

By the heady standards of Alfred Hitchcock, his 1958 film Vertigo was a failure. It only just broke even at the box office at a time when the director’s films where raking in money. It received a lukewarm reception from the critics, who sniffed that it was “only a murder mystery” not worthy of two hours of screen time. Those same critics


Pixar’s Brave lacks creative daring

For a film of its name, Pixar’s Brave feels positively timid. Though touted as a breakthrough for Pixar and the wider animation industry — it’s the animation studio’s first film co-directed by a woman and to feature a female lead character — Brave is as conventional as a Disney fairy tale. That’s not to say that

Editor's pick

The Dark Knight Rises above its faults

Few films leave me as conflicted as The Dark Knight Rises, the ambitious but maddeningly inconsistent conclusion to the trilogy director Christopher Nolan started with Batman Begins. It’s a film that as often amplifies Nolan’s weaknesses as a storyteller as it

Editor's pick

Cabin in the Woods pokes fun at horror genre

The slasher flick has not been the same since Wes Craven’s 1996 horror-comedy Scream so cannily deconstructed the subgenre that he helped to create. Craven’s mockery was affectionate but also so on target that no one has been able to take slasher movies seriously ever since

Editor's pick

Amazing Spider-Man spins an old story

Following too soon after Sam Raimi’s 2002 Spider-Man origin tale and sticking too closely to its narrative beat, The Amazing Spider-Man has no real reason to exist. Though the film is often enjoyable, it’s hard to shake the feeling you have seen it all before in Raimi’s film and countless other superhero origin

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