Category: fantasy

REVIEW: Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest (2006)

When the East India Trading Company arrives and takes over Port Royal, Will Turner (Orlando Bloom) and Elizabeth Swann (Keira Knightley) are forced to track down Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) and force him to give them his enchanted compass. Sparrow, however, is busy running from Davy Jones (Bill Nighy) - the supernatural ferryman of ...

REVIEW: The Huntsman: Winter’s War (2016)

Seven years after escaping the Ice Queen Freya (Emily Blunt) and after helping to defeat the wicked Queen Ravenna (Charlize Theron), the huntsman Eric (Chris Hemsworth) is dispatched on a new quest when Ravenna's magic mirror is stolen. Eric's hunt to retrieve it brings him face-to-face with Sara (Jessica Chastain) - a wife he thought ...

REVIEW: Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (2003)

A governor's daughter (Keira Knightley) and an apprentice blacksmith (Orlando Bloom) are drawn into a desperate battle against Captain Barbossa (Geoffrey Rush) and his crew of cursed, undead pirates. Their only help is the deranged pirate Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp), except he does not seem to have decided on which side he is going ...

REVIEW: Doctor Strange (2016)

Talented surgeon Dr Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) suffers irreperable damage to his hands in a car crash, ending his career in the process. When conventional medicine fails him, Strange follows a lead to Kathmandu and to an organisation of sorcerers defending the world from inter-dimensional attack. Marvel Studios represent the great commercial success story in ...

REVIEW: The Monkey King 2 (2016)

Soil Cheang's 2014 fantasy The Monkey King adapted the early chapters of Journey to the West, depicting an out-of-control Sun Wukong being tricked by the villainous Bull Demon King to rampage through heaven. As punishment, Wukong was trapped underneath a mountain for 500 years. The Monkey King 2 picks up five centuries later, as Wukong is rescued by, and then ...

REVIEW: The Monkey King (2014)

After a failed demonic attack on Heaven, the rebuilding process inadvertently creates a supernaturally powerful monkey. After growing up to become the powerful but mischievous Monkey King (Donnie Yen), he finds himself manipulated by the vengeful Bull Demon King (Aaron Kwok) to challenge heaven and the authority of the benevolent Jade Emperor (Chow Yun-Fat). Produced ...

REVIEW: The Great Wall (2016)

A group of European bandits, led by the English archer William (Matt Damon), are lost in the wilderness about northern China. After a night-time attack by a monster kills the entire group save for William and his companion Tovar (Pedro Pascal), they stumble upon the Great Wall of China - defended by an entire army ...

“Everything I’ve done, I’ve done for you” | Labyrinth (1986)

You can listen to a podcast version of this essay here. A teenage girl obsessed with imagination and fantasy angrily wishes for her baby brother to be spirited away by goblins – only to discover goblins have done exactly as she asks. To rescue her brother she must make her way through an elaborate maze ...

“My last and best reason for living” | Ladyhawke (1985)

In 1980 film producer Lauren Shuler was looking for a screenwriter for one of her developing film projects. Someone at 20th Century Fox told her about a writer named Edward Khmara, whom they thought might be a good fit. To demonstrate Khmara’s writing skills, the Fox representative mailed Shuler a copy of his most recent ...

“This is true love” | The Princess Bride (1987)

‘As a writer,’ said William Goldman, ‘the only book I really like is The Princess Bride.’[i] Goldman’s original take on the classical fairy tale was first published in 1973. It was his eighth novel, although despite beginning his career as an author he had already made significant head-roads into writing for American cinema. Goldman’s first ...