Author: Simon Mercep

Midnight Oil: Still Burning Bright

The Oils still have plenty of fire in their bellies. The veteran Aussie band brought their passion, musicianship, stagecraft and energy to Auckland’s Spark Arena last night, producing a powerhouse show in front of a packed audience. The band swept…

My Cousin Rachel – expertly done, but ultimately unengaging

My Cousin Rachel leads you on a merry little Victorian dance. It achieves this goal with a degree of class, but for all that, by film’s end I found myself not caring too much about the characters. Its early promise…

The Mummy – The kitchen sink applied, but to no avail

Tom Cruise throws everything into this film: action, special effects, fantasy, comedy, a little romance, Russell Crowe doing accents (truly) and a dash of Robert Louis Stephenson. Could such a heady brew make for a satisfying adventure yarn?  It couldn’t,…

Alien: Covenant – good enough, but let’s talk about Prometheus

My interest in Alien:Covenant was not so much about how it looked, or how well it was acted and directed. Having followed the Alien saga through the first four films, and then the first prequel, Prometheus, my concern going into…

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2: Fun, then more fun. After that? A little more fun.

People laughed. They laughed out loud. A lot. So did I. A lot. And at one point, as Sam Cooke’s “Bring It On Home to Me” filled the cinema, a group of young Pacific Island guys to my left burst…

Broadchurch finale: serious, compelling, and the whodunnit wasn’t bad either

This third series of Broadchurch provided seriously good crime drama, with a confronting subject, dealt with honestly and compellingly – sexual assault. In fact the series did much more than detail a specific crime of rape, but rather used its…

The Fate of the Furious -silly fast fun with a Kiwi twist

Let’s start with a totally surprising scene in the first part of the film that blew everyone in the audience away. It caught everyone off guard, it was delightful, it brought a smile to everyone’s face, and it was a…