Tag Archive: maggie gyllenhaal


White House Down Trailer

UK Release Date: 6th September 2013

Stars: Roland Emmerich (director), Channing Tatum, Jamie Foxx, Joey King, Jason Clarke, James Woods, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Richard Jenkins, Lance Reddick.

Plot: While on a tour of the White House with his young daughter, a Capitol policeman springs into action to save his child and protect the president from a heavily armed group of paramilitary invaders.

While reading about White House Down I became pretty excited about the prospect. What it seems to be is an updated version of the original Die Hard, but set in the White House, featuring one of my favourite actors at the minute who is riding a tidal wave of success, Channing Tatum. So, as I finally get round to watching the trailer, why am I left disappointed?

First of all, this is supposed to be an action film. Everyone loves action films because they don’t take themselves to seriously and that is the major problem we have here. Obviously, the terror threat for America in the last twelve years has been non-stop (and heightened in recent weeks) so maybe that is to blame for the horrible trailer which begins with news footage of the attack on the White House in the film.

But this does nothing to heighten audience interest. It bored me. I don’t want to be bored by a trailer for an ACTION film, I want action! Looking at the cast I do have high hopes for this and I am sure over the next few months we will see more of Channing Tatum taking on the bad guys but for now, don’t lose any sleep over this. NEXT!

Sherrybaby (2006) Review.

***WARNING: CONTAINS SPOILERS***

Released in 2006, Sherrybaby was well received by critics and was an official selection at a number of film festivals across America and Europe. Maggie Gyllenhaal in particular impressed and was nominated for a Golden Globe as well as various other awards for her performance in the lead role.

Maggie Gyllenhaal plays Sherry, a woman who apparently hates wearing a bra and loves sex. More importantly though, Sherry has recently been released from a three year prison sentence; she is eager to establish a relationship with her young daughter who has been looked after by Sherry’s brother and his wife. Sherry soon learns that fitting back into normal life is a lot harder than she imagined as she faces the temptation to return to old habits but must stay away to further her relationship with her daughter.

Gyllenhaal in the lead role, and as the only recognisable name among the cast, does a great job as Sherry. She plays her part really well and manages to draw the audience in to Sherry’s world and get a real sense of the emotional state and mental workings of the character. Brad William Henke as Bobby, Sherry’s brother, puts in a good performance and is very likeable as is Danny Trejo’s character, Dean, who begins a sort of relationship with Sherry.

This film is Laurie Collyer’s directorial debut. Collyer also wrote Sherrybaby and to date this remains the only feature film that she has directed. The direction here is very good. Sherrybaby screams realism, it feels as though we are in that world, the small details are given great time and place within the story and to be honest, I think that small details can really add to the final art of the film.

Sherrybaby touches on some very serious issues. We are given the drug abuse, the alcohol abuse and the difficulty of coming out of prison and integrating back into the real world. Even sexual abuse within the family is hinted at although this is a subject glossed over and I can’t help but feel that the film would have done better to get more in depth in this part of the story.

The story of Sherrybaby is a good one, but it is a very slow burner. The film is slow paced and at times borders on the edge of boring which is a shame, but for parts of the film I found myself willing something interesting to happen. Unfortunately though, it is not until the end that I got a real sense of something from the film. In the final twenty minutes Sherry moves forward a lot more than during the rest of the film. We see her trying to bond with her daughter and is something that I would have liked to have seen more of.

Overall, Sherrybaby is a good film, but that is all. Good.

My Rating. 6/10.