Monday, 31 December 2018

CeX voted UK Shop of the Year!

We're chuffed to bits to share that PriceSpy, the fully impartial price and product comparison service, has announced CeX has been voted the winner of its Shop of the Year competition for 2017!

PriceSpy state "Shop of the Year is the People's Choice award for the best and most popular online shops. The award is independent and objective. Shop of the Year is elected every year by users of Pricespy. CeX also won the Games and Consoles Category!"

Pricespy gave us £2500 to pass on to our partner Charities Help for Heroes and Muscular Dystrophy UK and in the spirit of good tidyings we'll be topping this up with another £2500.


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Happy New year from all of us at CeX!


2018 was one hell of a year and 2019 is looking even better (Kingdom Hearts 3!!!)

Got some New Year’s resolutions? Clear out the clutter and turn it into cash at CeX.


Most of our stores are open today, our staff are waiting with a treasure trove of games and gadgets where you can buy, sell and exchange to your heart’s content. If you're still in the Xmas lull or just can't quite make it down to your local store, check our prices at webuy.com




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Saturday, 29 December 2018

DCU: Death of Superman ★☆☆☆☆


I should preface this review with the fact that I have no experience with comics, and my only exposure to ‘the death of Superman’ is that iconic image of the torn cape raised as a flag. As such, I’ve no idea - and no interest - in how faithful of an adaptation The Death of Superman is; I’ll be judging it as a standalone film.


The Death of Superman suffers from an inconsistent tone. A bank robbery is underway during the opening, as a group villains emerge from the smoke. Their armour bulky and rounded, sporting green and purple. Initially, I was caught off guard at the absurdity. I considered then, that these silly (it’s really the only word) costumes, combined with the 90s era animation style meant that The Death of Superman was intended as a feature-length episode of a 90s superhero cartoon. Fine by me. I’m outside of that age demographic, but I can see the merits. However…

Following the reveal of these villains, they proceed to gun down police officers, followed by profanity which would immediately put the film well above a child-friendly rating. I was dumbfounded. What was going on? Dissonance set in from here and continued throughout. The Death of Superman has the appearance of a Saturday morning cartoon, yet features the dialogue and subject-matter of an edgier, adult-orientated affair. The combined result was laughable. Drama and emotional scenes undercut by an unfocused intent.

Furthering this issue is the animation. Whether this was due to a lack of talent or budget, I don’t know, but the low quality of the animation resulted in emotional character moments falling flat; faces lack proper emotion; nuances in expressions. The result is simply… stilted. Awkward, even. Environments are also flat and lifeless, which became more apparent during Doomsday’s rampage. Civilians could be heard screaming in terror, the sounds of traffic, screeching tires, panicked horns, yet the scenes were often devoid of any people. Scenes of destruction which were intended to be tense and dramatic lacked any impact whatsoever as a result. No one was to be seen, thus no one was in danger.


The biggest fault, however, is the fight between Superman and Doomsday. Not because of the fight itself (in fact, the choreography was surprisingly elegant), rather, neither characters interact with each other prior to combat, never even exchange a word. Doomsday is almost secondary to the plot and Superman’s arc, which makes their encounter bizarrely lacking any emotional connection. Thus, Superman’s death - the title of the film - misfires. It feels cheap and unearned. The Death of Superman suffers in many areas, but that is the most egregious. The titular death of Superman is undermined by how that death is achieved. It renders itself pointless.

★☆☆☆☆
Lewis Hill

DCU: Death of Superman at CeX




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Friday, 28 December 2018

Hereditary ★★★★★


Just in time for the scariest month of the year, first-time director Ari Aster brings us one of the most unforgettable horrors to grace our screens in a long time. The beauty of this film is that it surpasses everything you’ve come to learn about horror films. It doesn’t rely on cheap jump scares and an over the top score to get your heart racing. Hereditary builds a scene that is so ordinary and parallel to our own that when things start to get spooky, it really hits home.


The beginning of the film appears to get off to a bit of a slow start, the death of grandmother Ellen sends the Graham family into a state of grief. Particularly startled by Ellen’s death is the youngest daughter Charlie. Now, it’s clear from the start that this kid is weird: if she’s not dismembering birds, she’s making the strangest sound that will haunt you for days. In an attempt to help Charlie fit in, her mother Annie convinces brother Peter to take her to a high school party and really it all goes downhill from there. I won’t disclose too many details, as this really is something you have to see with your own eyes, but long story short – Charlie never makes it home from the party. Following this, Annie joins a support group to help deal with her loss and it’s not long before she starts to discover the truth behind her mother’s past. Now, up until this point, I was sat there questioning where this film was going. Whilst the whole thing had an oddly tense feel, there was nothing particularly gripping that made me want to carry on watching. 

But, how bloody wrong was I. The safety net is quickly removed and leaves you falling into an uncomfortable world of terror. Annie meets with a friend from her bereavement group who explains to her how she has been contacting the dead through séances. Inspired by this, Annie holds her own séance in the hopes of contacting Charlie. I don’t really need to tell you that messing with the dead never ends well and that is very clear in Hereditary. It’s a quick descent from here on and the film picks up the fear factor considerably as Annie discovers what fearful beliefs she may just be in line to inherit. I spent the last half an hour or so watching from behind a pillow, this is shameful for me to admit as I consider myself quite the hardened horror viewer.  

One of the most enjoyable parts of this film for me was the symbolism. Everything was so carefully intertwined and relevant. Aster really succeeds in the fact that the film was that haunting that I didn’t want to watch it again, but it was so gripping and complex that I felt compelled to give it a second go so I could try and understand what I’d just seen.


I won’t lie about the fact that I had to do some research after the film had ended, so if you’re looking for a film that is an easy watch, this one might not be your best bet. However, if you’re looking for a clever and sophisticated horror that leaves you thinking, Hereditary fits the bill. 

Overall I’d say that Hereditary has quite rightfully earned the title as one of the scariest horrors ever made. Ari Aster has done a spectacular job of creating a false sense of security that lures you in, only to drop you into a whirlwind of weird. If you don’t watch any other horror film this Halloween, be sure to watch Hereditary. 

★★★★★

Georgia Hughes

Hereditary at CeX




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Thursday, 27 December 2018

Salt & Sanctuary ★★★★☆


“Like Dark Souls, but…” is not how I’d like to start any review. However, Salt & Sanctuary wears its inspirations on its sleeve with such love that it can’t be avoided. Salt & Sanctuary is like Dark Souls, but 2D.

Which brings to light another problem. In recent months, that particular type of Souls-like has become so ubiquitous that the Switch release of Salt & Sanctuary is going to have a harder time standing out from the crowd. Hyper Light Drifter, Death’s Gambit, FURY, and most recently, Dead Cells are but a few notable mentions, and that doesn’t count the multitude of others that have slipped under the radar. So what does Salt & Sanctuary do, if anything, that makes it favourable over its competitors?


It would be almost redundant to describe the core gameplay mechanics because Salt & Sanctuary is one of the most faithful recreations of the Dark Souls formula I have played.  So understand that using “like Dark Souls, but 2D” as shorthand in this instance isn’t hyperbole; there is no other description more apt. Whereas the aforementioned games are more distinct when it comes to the gameplay formula, there is one key difference with Salt & Sanctuary: mood.

Mood (or atmosphere, if you’re feeling a touch more pretentious) is an abstract thing to describe, and hard to properly articulate. It’s an accumulation of the visuals, environments, sound, music, and writing, which all comes together to create a particular feeling that envelops the player. In the case of Salt & Sanctuary (and indeed Dark Souls) the world is dying. Slowly. The true antagonist of this world is the Nameless God which has caused this land to endure an endless cycle of war; memories, structures, monuments, people, all slowly and surely fading away.

The environments in Salt & Sanctuary are decaying, lifelessly absorbed by a persistent fog. The music - though sparse - is slow, comprised of plucked strings. The characters speak with a grimly humorous flair. In truth, I’ve made it sound far grimmer than it actually is. Salt and Sanctuary doesn’t feel hopeless or grim, per se. Instead: ennui. Like the rot of time, there is the heavy feeling of apathy.


And that apathy is what sets Salt & Sanctuary apart from the rest. The core gameplay mechanics are solid, as they should be. They have been proven by Dark Souls and adapted to 2D here. Yet, to have successfully achieved such as essence of apathy across this world is what impressed me the most, and was reason enough for Salt & Sanctuary to truly keep me invested.

★★★★☆
Lewis Hill



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Wednesday, 26 December 2018

H1Z1 ★★★☆☆


I should probably preface this with the fact that I’m not a fan of PUBG, not anymore. I used to be, certainly. As the popularity continued to grow I was right there, caught up in the hype. PUBG scratched that itch that no other game had before it, battle-royale or otherwise. It was clunky, it was unoptimised, the core mechanics needed some rethinking, but still… 

That slow, creeping tension of moving from one location to the next, every noise triggering a primal moment of panic; fight or flight? That experience was unmatched and kept me playing for a constant thirty hours. Yet, it grew stale. Quickly. I couldn’t tell you how long it’s been since I last played.


I say that with an air of sadness because it had so much potential. And for some, it has achieved that potential. For me, not so much. In short, I find it to be too slow, too sluggish, too… uneventful to remain tense. Which brings me on to H1Z1. Despite having existed prior to PUBG, its popularity - well, player base - has increased since the switch to a free-to-play model.

I must be honest here; I have had far more fun with H1Z1 than I have with PUBG. Despite the fact that, on a technical level, H1Z1 is rougher than the two, the slightly faster pace and lighter tone made me more eager to immediately start another match after death. The core elements are the same: parachute down, find a weapon, find a backpack, armour, health kits, and stay alive whilst doing so. 

The gunplay is certainly less ‘realistic’ for lack of a better word, and movement favours speed over positioning and sound. Less engaging, maybe, but it keeps the pace up, and that’s the sticking point for me. The best way to explain it is to, of course, mention that other popular battle-royale game: Fortnite. Though less polished, H1Z1 plays like Fortnite without the building. Lighter, quicker, and more frantic. Plus, it too is free.


In short, H1Z1 is the midpoint of the two battle-royale giants. If the building aspect of Fortnite doesn’t appeal to you, and if you find the slower realism of PUBG is too tedious, well, that’s where H1Z1 comes in. Why take my word for it, though? It’s free, after all.

★★★☆☆
Lewis Hill



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Tuesday, 25 December 2018

TEST COMPETITION



THIS IS A TEST COMPETITION.

DO NOT ENTER.
ALL ENTRIES ARE INVALID.


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Merry CeXmas one and all!



Wishing you all the Merriest of Christmases from all of us here at CeX!

Hoping it's full of gifts, treats and triple helpings of christmas dinner.

Santa didn’t double check your list? Grandma get it wrong?

You can trade in your unwanted games and gadgets for cash or exchange at CeX - most of our stores are open as normal from the 26th.

Get something from us?
Anything bought from 1/12/18 has until 31/12/18 to be returned in store for a voucher.*

You can find your local store HERE.



*Terms & Conditions apply







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Merry CeXmas one and all!



Wishing you all the Merriest of Christmases from all of us here at CeX!

Hoping it's full of gifts, treats and triple helpings of christmas dinner.

Santa didn’t double check your list? Grandma get it wrong?

You can trade in your unwanted games and gadgets for cash or exchange at CeX - most of our stores are open as normal from the 26th.

Get something from us?
Anything bought from 1/12/18 has until 31/12/18 to be returned in store for a voucher.*

You can find your local store HERE.


*Terms & Conditions apply



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Merry CeXmas one and all!






Wishing you all the Merriest of Christmases from all of us here at CeX!

Hoping it's full of gifts, treats and triple helpings of christmas dinner.


Santa didn’t double check your list? Grandma get it wrong?

You can trade in your unwanted games and gadgets for cash or exchange at CeX - most of our stores are open as normal from the 26th.

Get something from us?
Anything bought from 1/12/18 has until 31/12/18 to be returned in store for a voucher.*

You can find your local store HERE.




*Terms & Conditions apply


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Merry CeXmas one and all!





Wishing you all the Merriest of Christmases from all of us here at CeX!

Hoping it's full of gifts, treats and triple helpings of christmas dinner.

Santa didn’t double check your list? Grandma get it wrong?

You can trade in your unwanted games and gadgets for cash or exchange at CeX - most of our stores are open as normal from the 26th.

Get something from us?
Anything bought from 1/12/18 has until 31/12/18 to be returned in store for a voucher.*

You can find your local store HERE.



*Terms & Conditions apply




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Monday, 24 December 2018

Order in time for Xmas delivery!

Order online by midnight on Thursday the 13th December
for delivery in time for Christmas Day*. Happy hunting!

Prefer to shop in person or left it too late? Find your local CeX store here and buy with confidence as you can return items** bought in December until the end of December. Simply bring them back in the condition they were sold in, accompanied with the receipt.


*External factors beyond our control (such as strikes, adverse weather or bubonic plague etc) may delay your orders.

**Excludes Operating Systems, Applications, Software and Games products that feature “(S)” in the title, and items from the "CeX Basics" product range.



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Order in time for Xmas delivery!

Order online by noon on Wednesday the 19th December
for delivery in time for Christmas Day*. Happy hunting!

Prefer to shop in person or left it too late? Find your local CeX store here and buy with confidence as you can return items** bought in December until the end of December. Simply bring them back in the condition they were sold in, accompanied with the receipt.


*External factors beyond our control (such as strikes, adverse weather or bubonic plague etc) may delay your orders.


**Excludes Operating Systems, Applications, Software and Games products that feature “(S)” in the title, and items from the "CeX Basics" product range.


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Sunday, 23 December 2018

Christopher Robin ★★★★☆


Marc Forster has had quite a colourful career, all told. Making his name way back in 2001 with Monster’s Ball, he’s since darted from genre to genre - from teen dystopian sci-fi in The Maze Runner to self-aware fantasy-comedy in Stranger than Fiction, to zombie horror in World War Z - with mixed success. However, with the critically acclaimed Finding Neverland -  the story of J.M. Barrie and the inspiration that lead him to write Peter Pan - under his belt, who better to tackle the story of all-grown-up Christopher Robin rediscovering his childhood than he?


With a history spanning over 90 years, it must have been a challenge to breathe fresh life into the story of Pooh Bear, Piglet, Eeyore, Tigger, Owl, Rabbit, Kanga, Roo and the Hundred Acre Wood, but Forster - along with screenwriters Greg Brooker and Mark Steven Johnson - have done exactly that. Wisely, they shift the focus from the toys to Christopher Robin himself. Gone is the yellow-shirted boy we’re all familiar with; this Christopher Robin has grown up and left his childhood behind. Having returned from serving in the British Army to his wife and daughter, he settles down working as an efficiency expert at a struggling luggage company in London. With his career in jeopardy years later, however, he begins to lose sight of what’s important, and it’s only after a surprise reunion with everyone’s favourite Bear of Very Little Brain and his pals that he realises what he’s missing out on.

Now the story of the growing disconnect between childhood and adulthood is a familiar tale, and one we’ve seen in countless family movies throughout the years, but there’s something refreshing about Forster’s take on it. No doubt this is in large part due to Ewan McGregor’s innate charisma and skill as an actor; he manages to nail the role without it ever feeling like the rediscovery of his childhood is forced (and not only that, but he is of course supported by an excellent voice cast, most notable of which is the ever-reliable Jim Cummings, who has voiced Winnie the Pooh since 1988). McGregor aside, though, Forster has been brave enough to tinge Christopher Robin with a surprising amount of sadness; it’s not at all upsetting, but there’s definitely a distinct air of wistful longing scattered throughout it. 

Not only has Christopher Robin has lost sight of his childhood, but the toys he grew up with are no longer rendered in the vibrant, colourful palette of the cartoons, but instead, in Forster’s reimagining of them as actual stuffed toys, just seem worn out. Their colours have faded and their fur is ragged. Even a layer of fog hangs heavily over a Hundred Acre Wood itself; all of which smartly visualises Christopher Robin’s ever fading connection to his childhood (interestingly, rendering the toys in such a realistic manner allows Forster to highlight the fact that both Rabbit and Owl are based on real animals, not stuffed toys; something that Disney’s cartoons were unable to do). Fortunately, though, this never detracts from the enjoyment of watching the film; there’s a great deal of joy to be had in seeing Pooh and his pals brought to life in such detail, particularly when they get let loose on the streets of London.


Christopher Robin is, suitably, a film for kids and adults alike; there’s a lot to love in it, from the quality of the voice acting to the impressive CGI, to the set pieces. The story itself isn’t particularly original - you can predict where it’s likely to go, beat for beat, even if given the vaguest outlines of the film’s premise - but the execution is where it shines. Forster has managed to capture the wistful sadness of returning to one’s childhood perfectly without ever making the film seem too dour or distressing. It doesn’t do anything particularly new, true, but there’s a real comfort in what it does.

★★★★☆
Phil Taberner

Christopher Robin at CeX




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Saturday, 22 December 2018

The MEG ★★★☆☆


Shark movies have had somewhat of a bad rap in recent years - no thanks to The Asylum, who have been putting out at least two shark movies every year since Sharknado made them all the money back in 2013 - so it came as quite a surprise to me to see someone actually taking a ‘proper’ stab at one. (’Proper’ is, of course, a relative term; we’re not talking Jaws here. I’m using it to mean ‘actually given a mainstream cinema release’). Enter Jon Turteltaub, with his 2018 sharkstravaganza, The Meg. But how does it fare when held up against such a colourful history? Well, let’s see...


Loosely based on a 1997 novel by Steve Alten of roughly the same name, it follows the story of jaded deep-sea rescue expert Jonas Taylor (James Statham), who gets recruited to save an exploration team who get lost in a submersible in a secret part of the ocean, hidden underneath a layer of gas at the bottom of the Marianas Trench. It’s not long, however, before they realise that something’s down there with them… (spoiler: it’s a Megalodon).

I went into the cinema, not with high expectations as such, but with at least a hope that for the next two hours I’d have a blast watching a dumb-but-fun flick about Jason Statham punching a giant shark in its giant sharky face. However, surprisingly, I came away feeling a little disappointed. The main issue I had with the film is that it’s just not as fun as it should be; this is a film in which a 2.6-million-year-old shark the length of a cricket pitch that’s - again, just to reiterate - been hiding in a secret bit of the ocean, wreaks havoc on an underwater research facility. It’s such a bonkers concept that it’s a shame that the rest of the film doesn’t really follow suit; The Meg is, despite briefly flirting with a few bits of silly high-tech gadgetry and playing through a handful of campy moments (there’s a bizarre nod to Finding Nemo in it), largely played disappointingly straight. After all, this is a film directed by the guy behind both National Treasure movies; he should know how to make a film fun, of all things.


Perhaps I’m being too harsh. The Meg isn’t a bad movie. The ensemble cast is pretty solid - a special nod to both Rainn Wilson’s megalomaniac billionaire Jack Morris, who clearly is having a blast, and Shuya Cai’s Meiying, whose interplay with Jason Statham is just plain adorable - and the action pieces are...numerous, I guess? The trouble with it is that it doesn’t know where its focus is; superficially, it’s a cheesy, schlocky, b-movie-with-a-budget, but at the same time it seems to frantically be trying to distance itself from the spate of trashy shark movies that have been released in recent years. The tragedy of The Meg is that it’s a film with so much potential; there’s a sense that there’s a real romp hiding somewhere underneath there, but unfortunately, between taking itself a little too seriously and overstaying its welcome a touch, it stays just out of reach.

★★★☆☆
Phil Taberner

The MEG at CeX




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Friday, 21 December 2018

Juliet, Naked ★★★★☆


The rom-com genre is an interesting one in film – it’s absolutely massive, never seeming to fade out of existence like some movie crazes do, but it can also be seen as quite marmite. I tend to not watch rom-coms out of choice as I often find them predictable and/or unoriginal, but there are several that I absolutely love and will watch over and over again. 


‘Juliet, Naked’ is the latest film directed by Jesse Peretz (known for ‘Our Idiot Brother’ and TV series ‘Girls’) and is an adaptation of the book of the same name by Nick Hornby, one of our leading male rom-com writers (Hornby, alongside David Nicholls, is one of my favourites when it comes to books). Annie (Rose Byrne) is in a long-term relationship with Duncan (Chris O’Dowd), a lecturer so obsessed with long-disappeared rock star Tucker Crowe (Ethan Hawke) that he leads a forum on his disappearance and posts videos discussing Tucker-related conspiracy theories from his Tucker Crowe shrine room. As you can imagine, Annie is fed up, and a disagreement between the two ends up leading to her communicating with the elusive Tucker over email, creating some interesting scenarios down the line.

The two key elements of romantic comedy are strong here, with a satisfying mix of romantic potential and laugh-inducing scenes, from frequent on- liners to full minutes of hilarity such as an unusual family gathering around a hospital bed that perfectly combines cringe and humour. The chemistry between actors is what makes it, with good performances all round (but especially from Hawke and Byrne). O’Dowd is great as well, bringing his obsessive and slightly creepy character to life. 

What makes this one different is that, instead of being a bit fluffy and trivial like rom-coms can be, it actually focuses on some pretty weighty issues, and focuses on them well. Divorce, regret, and the concept of the absent father are all explored, and the integrity of the acting helps build up emotion during some particularly difficult scenes for the characters. This doesn’t impact on the humour, instead giving a point to the story, and several different ways in which the viewer can relate to a plot which, although great to watch, is admittedly far-fetched.


I actually found that I enjoyed the film as much as the book in the end – although Hornby’s writing is excellent there’s something oddly charming about this specific set of characters when they’re on the big screen, and the Hawke and Byrne, in particular, added the perfect dynamic that Hornby wanted to convey throughout the novel. The film is every bit as comforting as the book, and makes for a cosy Sunday morning watch with your other half, snuggled under the duvet away from the miserable British autumn outside.

Although contrived in parts, ‘Juliet, Naked’ is feel-good rom-com with a modern and indie feel that sets it apart from the rest. Even if it’s not your genre of choice it’s still worth a watch, with a gentle reminder that maybe some of us need – even if it has all gone wrong so far, there’s no reason why you can’t fix that for the future.


★★★★☆
Hannah Read



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Thursday, 20 December 2018

The Hurricane Heist ☆☆☆☆☆


Here’s a film that doesn’t really warrant reviewing. It’s one of those films with a poster that tell you absolutely everything you need to know about the quality of the film or lack thereof. The poster will tell you if this is something you will love or something you will hate. Take a look at the poster, I’ll wait. First off, we’ve got “from the director of The Fast and The Furious”. For any self-respecting film aficionado, this is a pretty blaring alarm bell. Then we’ve got an image of two trucks driving through a hurricane, with cash flying around in the storm. Then we have the title: The Hurricane Heist. Oh boy. Hardly looks like Citizen Kane, does it? Oh, and the tagline…”On March 9, make it rain”. God, help us all…


But for the target audience – largely, you Fast and Furious fans out there – I’m sure this is a modern masterpiece. Big trucks and bastard weather systems. Sounds like great fun if you’re into that kind of thing. If the title didn’t tell you everything you needed to know about the plot, it’s pretty simple. A bunch of thieves attempt a heist against the U.S. Treasury…as a category 5 hurricane approaches. Not particularly good planning by the thieves, but there you go. At the end of the day, this is clearly attempting to be a fun throwback to the over-the-top action thrillers of the 1980s and 90s. Sylvester Stallone was actually attached to a very similar film in the early 90s called Gale Force, but the film was scrapped in favour of Cliffhanger. Making the film now just feels like it is 20-30 years too late, and without a charismatic big star to distract us from the bonkers plot, it falls apart.


Toby Kebbell, Maggie Grace and Ryan Kwanten are all bloody awful in the film but they’ve not really got much choice with such a piss-poor script to work with. Written by Jeff Dixon and Scott Windhauser, the script is packed with such bizarre non-sequiturs and futile attempts at character development that the film is almost an unintentional comedy at times, reeling off cliché after cliché with almost no attempt at quality. This is just a disastrous film. And it’s no surprise that the film made an estimated loss of $20-25 million. No stars, poor CGI, dreadful acting/writing and some of the most uncomfortably off-putting marketing, this one was doomed from the start. I really had to force myself to watch this and I only did so that I could review it for you lovely people. In a world where I don’t review films, I wouldn’t touch this one with a 39-and-a-half-foot pole (to quote The Grinch). I’ve endured The Hurricane Heist’s 103 minutes so you don’t have to – please, don’t let my journey into cinematic depravity be for nothing. Don’t watch The Hurricane Heist. I need to know that the pain and suffering I went through was to protect you. You can now live in a safe world where The Hurricane Heist can’t hurt you. The Hurricane Heist was exactly the film I expected it to be – and yet, I’m still disappointed.

☆☆☆☆☆
Sam Love
The Hurricane Heist at CeX




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