Ford On Film

Chronicles of a silver screen addict

Author Archive: Ford on Film

A former Disney star sheds his image with the disturbing My Friend Dahmer

My Friend Dahmer is unique amongst biopics about serial killers. Rather than focusing on the grisly murders and eventual arrest of Jeffrey Dahmer, Marc Myers’ directorial debut looks at Dahmer’s teenage years, his formative experiences and the troubling influences and interests that eventual led to him brutally murdering 17 men and boys. Though My Friend …

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Sunday Short: Real Gods Require Blood (2017)

There’s something thrilling about discovering a new voice or an undiscovered talent in short films, especially when it’s a homegrown, BFI-funded effort. Scripted by novelist Tom Benn and directed by Moin Hussain, Real Gods Require Blood is an interesting, deeply disturbing take on an old favourite: the Satanic Horror. Set in Manchester in 1990 (at the …

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The Rider blurs the lines of fact and fiction with impressive results

The story behind Chloe Zhao’s The Rider is truly remarkable. In 2015, Zhao met cowboy Brady Jandreau at the Pine Ridge reservation and instantly knew she wanted to make a film about him. Unfortunately, she couldn’t figure out his story; that was, until he suffered a near-fatal riding accident and had to retire from riding …

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Apostle looks like an ultraviolent blast of folk horror from The Raid director Gareth Evans

It’s been over six years since Gareth Evans exploded onto the action cinema scene with The Raid, one of the most extraordinarily violent and choreographed martial arts films ever made, and four years since he released its ambitious follow-up The Raid 2. Now teaming up with Netflix, Gareth Evans is back with the trailer for …

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Bojack Horseman takes gimmick episodes to new heights in its outstanding fifth season

Since premiering to mediocre reactions (by critics who were unaware of creator Raphael Bob-Waksberg’s serious intentions) in 2014, Bojack Horseman has gone from strength to strength. Praised for its honest depiction of depression, furious political attacks (on subjects as controversial as sexual assault, gun control and abortion) and unique gimmick episodes, the show has rightly …

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The Coen Brothers return to the old west with the trailer for The Ballad of Buster Scruggs

Are the Coen Brothers the greatest living filmmakers? For over thirty years, the brothers have crafted some of the greatest films of all time, tackling everything from seedy noir (debut Blood Simple) and slapstick comedy (Raising Arizona) to offbeat crime capers (Fargo) and musical odysseys (Inside Llewyn Davis). If there’s one genre the brothers seem particularly fond …

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Do horror films need to be scary to work?

I’ve been pondering this question since I watched and reviewed Ghost Stories last week. My biggest complaint about Andy Nyman and Jeremy Dyson’s spooky theatrical adaptation was that the scares simply failed to translate from stage to screen. There were a couple of fun jump scares, but nothing to keep you awake at night. However, …

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Ghost Stories struggles to translate from stage to screen

Adapting a stage play into a feature film is tricky. What makes a piece work in a theatre – intimacy, intensity, immediacy – can fall flat when viewed in the cinema. This is especially true of horror. Just look at James Watkins’ 2012 adaptation of The Woman in Black: unbearably frightening on-stage, the film adaptation was …

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A hunting trip goes badly wrong in the tense, gripping Calibre

Though the basic premise – two old friends go on a hunting trip and run into violence– sounds like a Deliverance-style backwoods horror, Matt Palmer’s directorial debut Calibre is actually a sophisticated, sharply-written psychological thriller. Utilising its low budget and limited locations to deliver a tense, atmospheric morality tale, the Netflix-distributed film is among the …

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Jessie Buckley’s star-making performance carries the otherwise frustrating Beast

Jessie Buckley. Remember that name. In Michael Pearce’s directorial debut Beast, Buckley plays Moll, a troubled and lonely young woman living in an isolated Jersey town. Suffocated by an overbearing family and dead end job, Moll ditches her own birthday party – after her sister uses the opportunity to announce her pregnancy – to go …

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