Game of Thrones: Season 4: Breaker of Chains Review | Resident Entertainment
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After the last two episodes were so strong, it should come as no surprise that this week’s episode was a more measured affair that explored some interesting themes, but got bogged down by a handful of narrative hiccups.

WARNING – SPOILERS AHEAD

Where last week’s episode dealt with family and the fan-acclaimed “Purple Wedding”, this week’s episode was titled ‘Breaker of Chains’ and it primarily focused on… puts on Arts-Degree student’s thinking cap…the theme/motif of protection. There was plenty of evidence for this between Sam spending the episode trying to protect Gilly, Tyrion trying to protect Pod from the fallout of his framing and The Hound taking advantage of those who cannot protect themselves. The episode took a pretty broad approach to exploring this unifying motif and while it wasn’t as elegant as last week’s episode, it was still a fun way of structuring the episode.

 

The other side of the episode dealt with the fallout of last week’s assassination and with both the Lannister’ and Tyrells picking up the pieces. Olenna Tyrell puts it best when she reminds Margery that “Our alliance with the Lannisters remains every bit as necessary to them as it is unpleasant to us”. Meanwhile, Tommen got some valuable tutoring on what makes a good king from Tywin. It was fun to see the Lannister patriarch take the impetus here to ensure that Tommen doesn’t go down the same path as his brother, even if he was pretty brutal to Cersei in doing so. Given the brilliance of his later scenes with Oberyn Tyrell, it’s hard to not name Charles Dance this week’s MVP.

Given his role centre-stage last week, it’s not all that surprising to see Tyrion get very little screentime this week. That said, he did a lot with his single scene in the episode. His reaction to Sansa’s disappearance and his subsequent break-up with Pod were handled very well with Dinklage reminding us all of just how good he is in his role as The Imp.

If this week’s episode was any indication, the next handful of episodes concerning Tyrion will see him chasing down and hopefully solving Joffrey’s murder from his jail cell and that’ a plotline that I am very keen to follow.

 

As I said before, this episode was a lot slower than the last two. Although that’s not inherently bad, the episode felt like it stumbled a little bit as a result. If I had to pin this weakness on anything, it would be because the episode spent way too much time with Sam’s subplot for relatively little pay-off.

The other narrative hiccup that the episode faced was – to address the elephant in the room – the sequence where Jaime raped Cersei. While this scene is directly based on a chapter in A Storm of Swords where Cersei and Jaime spend some quality time together to deal with Joffrey’s grief, it’s pretty depicted as a bit more consensual (although still pretty messed-up) in the book. Given the way that the episode’s director steadfastly claims the sexual encounter was consensual, I can’t help but feel like there was a line of dialogue or a couple of extra seconds cut that, if kept, would have made it less ambiguous. Because above all, it’s this ambiguity that hurts the show. Given where both of their characters are at in terms of the greater story, it felt out of character for both Cersei and Jaime to act the way they did in the scene. In the books, I always read this part of the story as Jaime and Cersei’s way of dealing with their grief in the wake of Joffrey’s death. Another theory regarding the scene could be that perhaps the episode’s director felt that the threat of rape had been waved around so frequently over the last few seasons that it had become a bit disconnected from reality and that this scene would act as a shocking reminder of how real that threat is for even some of our favorite characters. Given the show’s reputation for both cruelty to its characters and its gratuitous sexualization, it’s hardly going to bring an end to the show but there are plenty of better critics who have written some interesting pieces about the scene if you want to read into it a bit more.

Stark-side, very little happened this week for everybody’s favorite killer-in-training with Arya and The Hound taking shelter with (and then later taking advantage of) a generous farmer. Meanwhile, the mastermind behind Sansa’s rescue was, rather unsurprisingly, Petyr Baelish. While I am of two minds when it comes to the show’s version of Littlefinger (and his lack of subtlety as the series has gone on), it was fun to see him make a return here. That said, his ruthless elimination of Ser Dontos was ultimately undercut by the diminished role he’s had in the show (compared to the book’s where his attempts to help Sansa escape took up a good chunk of both A Clash of Kings and A Storm of Swords).

For an episode named after her, it was unfortunate that Daenerys took up very little of Breaker of Chains. It would’ve been a lot more rewarding fun to see the episode anchored around her narrative rather than squeezing her whole story into the last five minutes. While Daenerys is often a little bit too smug for her own good, but her bold warmongering in this final stretch of the episode was fun to watch. Her attack of Mereen looks like it’s going to be a bloody affair and as long as Jorah & Barristan don’t get shafted on screentime in favor of the new Daario Naharis, it should be fun to watch.

The return of Dolorous Edd and Grenn was another welcome part of the episode not to mention the new subplot they bring with them. The mutineers at Craster’s Keep should help keep the Night’s Watch plotline interesting. It’d be very easy to turn any plotline taking place at Castle Black into a series of scenes where the Night’s Watch squabble and worry about the Mance’s impending attack but throwing the mutineers into the mix, should make a for a pretty fun couple of episodes. Additionally, this development helps explain to book readers why Jon’s trial and interrogation plot was cut down to a single episode

Last but not certainly least, Team Stannis fans had a few things to cheer about this week with him genuinely showing some renewed character growth in the wake of Joffrey’s murder (“If I do not press my claim, my claim will be forgotten – I will not become a page in somebody else’s history book!”). Similarly, we got to spend some more time with everybody’s favorite Onion Knight and it was good to see him get to work when it comes to rebuilding Stannis’ forces and chances of taking the throne. His sassy remarks about the fine differences between pirates and smugglers was fun and his discoveries about the Iron Bank of Braavos could end up taking ‘The Dragonstone Crew’ (as I have taken to calling them) some very interesting places as the season goes on.

While I feel like Breaker of Chains was the weakest episode this season – with a number of narrative hiccups –  it was still a pretty strong episode thanks to some great performances by Dinklage, Dance and Davos.

 

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Need For Speed Heat Australian Release Date

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Need For Speed Heat Australian release date Is November 8

The Need For Speed Heat Australian release date is November 8 2019. The game will be published by Electronic Arts and comes developed by Ghost Games. The game will be available on Xbox One, PS4 and PC.

EA says “The game deepens and expands everything Need for Speed  fans love – expressive customisation, authentic urban car culture, and an immersive narrative that pulls you into the game.”

What is Need For Speed Heat about?

Need for Speed Heat sends fans to Palm City, a brand-new open world where street racers have gathered to make their names known. By day, players compete in the Speedhunters Showdown, a sanctioned competition where they earn Bank to customise and upgrade their garage of high-performance cars. At night, players risk it all to build their Rep in underground races where a rogue police task force roams the streets, ready to take racers down and swipe all their earnings. The roads, the risks, and the rides never end in this street racer where a player can roll deep with their crew, build their garage full of hot cars, and make the city their nonstop playground.

Riley Cooper, Creative Director at Ghost Games said “Our fans have been clear that they want more cars, more customisation, and more challenges, and we’re tuning up on every aspect. From your character’s style to your car’s performance and your driving style, we’re fuelling everyone’s creativity with this new game.”

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Once Upon A Time In Hollywood Review

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Once Upon A Time In Hollywood Review - Leonardo DiCaprio as Rick Dalton and Brad Pitt as Cliff Booth
Once Upon A Time In Hollywood Review - Leonardo DiCaprio as Rick Dalton and Brad Pitt as Cliff Booth

Once Upon A Time In Hollywood is a film which comes written and directed by Quentin Tarantino who some may know for films such as The Hateful Eight (2015) or Pulp Fiction (1994). The film stars Leonardo DiCaprio, Brad Pitt, Margot Robbie, Dakota Fanning and Al Pacino. Once Upon A Time In Hollywood is about a fading Hollywood actor and his stunt double who are striving to achieve success in the final years of the Hollywood golden age.

Before going into this film, I must admit I was quite excited about it. This is the 9th film from Quentin Tarantino, who is one of my favourite directors of all time and the cast is filled with so many great actors there’s no reason to not want to see this one. Even though my expectations for this film were set very high, I came out of the cinema incredibly happy, very entertained and extremely impressed with what I just saw. Quentin Tarantino has truly delivered something very special this year and I highly recommend going to see it.

The way the story is told is very interesting. The audience follows the career of Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio) who is trying to maintain his stardom and Hollywood status in a time when things are changing. The actor is trying to transition from being a major TV star to a Hollywood actor, but it’s very difficult. On top of this, Rick Dalton is ageing and he is no longer in his prime, he’s sort of becoming obsolete. Cliff (Brad Pitt) is sharing a similar fate with his career tied to the success or failure of Rick’s. In contrast to these two, Sharon Tate (Margot Robbie) is a character who is everything good about Hollywood in 1969, her personality is welcoming, she helps people and she’s friendly. Quentin Tarantino’s Sharon Tate is the ideal Hollywood star of the time.

Quentin Tarantino with this film captured the spirit and essence of Hollywood in 1969. I felt like I was watching real people going through real things. The attention to detail on each of the characters and also watching them develop as the film progresses was very well done. This film also one has of the best endings and is maybe the best film that I’ve seen in 2019.

The actors were all great, I really enjoyed watching Leonardo DiCaprio in this film. The actor has a very wide range of things he could do as his character Rick Dalton is going through quite a lot and there are a lot of different emotional elements. On top of this, as a character who is an actor, Rick is seen acting in other films within this film as different characters he is playing. There are some very good performances within this film from Rick Dalton and in some ways, I wish I could watch the films that he was making within this film. Brad Pitt does very well and so too does Margot Robbie. Dakota Fanning surprised me a lot in this film as I didn’t even recognise her as Squeaky Fromme, she was only in the film for a bit, but for that time she was, she was very impactful.

Overall, I have no further comments to make about this film without having to go into major spoilers discussing all the different elements of it. It’s hard to write a long review for a film when everything was awesome in it. The directing, acting, writing, music and everything else about Once Upon A Time In Hollywood was awesome and Quentin Tarantino exceeded my expectations for this film. It may just be one of his best ones yet. I highly recommend going to see it at the cinema this week or as soon as you can. I am already wanting to see it a second time and probably will re-watch it on Blu-Ray when it’s released.

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Crawl Review

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Crawl Review

Crawl is a film which comes directed by Alexendre Aja who some may know as the director of The Hills Have Eyes (2006). The film stars Kaya Scodelario and Barry Pepper.

Crawl is a film about a young woman named Haley (Kaya Scodelario) who attempts to save her father (Barry Pepper) who is trapped in his house during a category 5 hurricane. Tremendous damage has occurred to the home and the surrounding area during the storm, with the streets slowly flooding But that’s not the only danger to be wary of, the flood waters have paved the way for dozens of alligators to come into town and they’re ready to feast on anyone still around. Will poor Haley and her father survive though?

Going into this film. I was actually quite excited. I do enjoy these action films where there’s some creature out there and it’s preying on whatever character the film is about. This film is a little similar to The Meg, but it most reminded me of Anacondas (2004). All of these films and Crawl included wouldn’t be ones I’d say were legendary films, but gosh, I definitely have fun watching them!

Crawl as a story is about survival. There are themes all throughout it related to man vs nature and also the idea of the apex predator is scattered all throughout it. Both characters in the film are constantly challenged and struggle to survive in the a town getting torn apart by the storm.

The main reason most people would go to see Crawl at the cinema would be for the action and that’s the same reason I wanted to go along and see this one. I wanted to see what the alligators could do and I wanted to see some people get eaten up. Did I get that? I certainly did! Did I need much more out of this? Probably not.

As for Crawl being scary. I’m not too sure, I find it all quite fun. But there are people who this would probably frighten a little. Much of the film is cgi and for what it is and for the type of movie this is I think it was just the right quality. They didn’t try to go too big like in The Meg where the cgi seemed to struggle in certain areas. Although the limitations of the cgi are visible in Crawl, it’s not too bad in the end.

The acting in Crawl isn’t too bad. Kaya Scodelario is who you’ll be watching for basically the entire film and she delivers a pleasant performance. Some may recognise this actress from her appearance in The Maze Runner (2014) where she played Teresa. Hopefully there is more to come from her in future films.

The tone of the film, while at times can be a little intense with all the danger out there did actually feel a little light. Alexandre Aja seemed to keep the tone not too serious and embraced the silliness of it all in certain areas to keep it light and fun. But it was also tense and scary when it needed to be.

Overall I had a good time with Crawl at the cinema last week. This isn’t a film that is going to blow anyone away with how good it is, but it’s something to see for a bit of fun over the weekend. You get to watch two characters try to survive a massive hurricane and not get eaten by alligators. Crawl was 1 hour and 27 minutes of fun!

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