Length 1h 54
Director Emerald Fennell
About Nothing in Cassie’s life is what it appears to be — she’s wickedly smart, tantalizingly cunning, and she’s living a secret double life by night. Now, an unexpected encounter is about to give Cassie a chance to right the wrongs from the past.
- This film is visually beautiful. There were so many times during the runtime I thought ‘put that on a canvas and I’d hang it in my house’. Very few films have even one frame like that for me. Yet here is this film, a Film Studies academic’s dream, giving me enough canvas for a museum.
- The film holds a wonderful familiarity with one of my favourite films, Get Carter, and a beloved tv show of mine, Veronica Mars. Not in a way that screams “remake” or “rip off”, but gives me the indication that the creatives behind this film are aiming for my demographic. That this is a film for me, by someone like me.
- The entire cast is incredible, but this really is Carey Mulligan’s time to shine. It was Cassandra’s story and Mulligan told it with such a presence that you’re drawn right in. I always knew she was going on to do great things when my favourite episode of Doctor Who became the one in which the Doctor, David Tennant’s Doctor no less, was barely present. It makes the geek in me really happy to see her hold her own in such a powerful and important film.
- Okay, there’s one other person I need to mention and that is Jennifer Coolidge. Holy crap, she blindsided me. She has been the epitome of comedy and caricatures that I am ashamed to say I cringed when I saw her name in the credits. Gone was that nasal squeak that she seemed to have branded herself with, gone are the blonde locks and instead we get a rather understated performance that really added to the family dynamic in the film. Directors, I hope you use this woman more because she is so much more than her 2 Broke Girls’ “Hi everybody”.
- Eat before you press play. Do everything you need to because you are not moving once it starts. I stupidly didn’t think I was going to like this movie, so I naively put it on about 30 minutes before I was going to have my dinner. I couldn’t pause, I couldn’t just nip out… this film had me not only engrossed, but invested. To have paused, even for a moment, could have altered the outcome.
Now, that, that is cinema at its finest.
- Its not the most comfortable of watches when you consider the themes, the story and the characters. This isn’t a film for entertainment’s sake. This is a cautionary tale and a societal mirror for trauma, grief and gender prejudice.
Watch this movie. Show your mother, your sister and most importantly, show your son, show your brother and show your dad this movie.
Length 1h 42
Director Wes Craven
About Maximillian, the last vampire alive, must find a mate to prevent the end of his lineage. He then meets Rita and tries to court her.
- The opening act is all Hammer Horror and I love it.
- The opening narration is amazing. I love the idea that vampires originated from Eygpt, that Max was residing on an island in the Bermuda Triangle until no more people came. Loved the set up, even if it does then lead to this film being a rip off of Coming to America.
- The evolution of his ghoul, Julius. I love how archetypal Julius is to all the ghouls I’ve seen in films before, in particular the role of Ed Thompson in Fright Night (1985).
- The comedy falls a little flat for me. Yes, I chuckled a bit at Murphy’s “I’ve just had Italian.” when talking about Mitch Pileggi’s Mob Boss. After that, there seems to be a lack of Eddie’s usual flair.
- Eddie acting against Eddie. Why does he do it? I hate it in Coming to America, I hate it in Norbit and I loath it in The Nutty Professor.
- I’m a prude and I could do without all the sex. It wasn’t so visual, but the noises. It was audible, weird, dry humping sex.
- Eddie does White Face. At least I think he does. I’m sure its him under the prosthetics. If I’m going to call out incidents of black face, I have to call out these too. The man is a vampire that can take any form. You want it to be a white dude, cast a white dude. Much like all the films that contain examples of black face, this is of its time. However,
It is Coming to America, with vampires.
Length 1h 44
Director Scott Stewart
About A group of strangers in a diner suddenly find themselves surrounded by demons. Their only hope lies in Michael, an archangel, who wishes to protect the unborn child of the restaurant’s waitress.
- It was a well cast film. Paull Bettany is as awesome as he always is, Adrianne Palicki is charming and Lucas Black has that “Where do I know your face?” quality. Answer: He’s the kid right at the beginning of X Files: Fight the Future (1998).
- The premise, while derivative, is a good one. Terminator, Children of Men and even Harry Potter has the plot of saving an unborn child to secure a better future. They also have the bad guys there to try and stop that with all the blood and mayhem.
- Doug Jones. Who doesn’t love a bit of what Doug Jones can offer?! His cameo is short, but by no means sweet. You’ll be thinking about it for days. The beauty of it, for me at least, is that you actually get to see Doug Jones’ face. Before, of course, he does what he does best and creeps the fuck out of me.
- The action sequences were so much like game play that it left me feeling a little sick in the end. At one point all the actors looked like CGI renderings of themselves.
- The plot, or lack thereof, is pinned around set pieces rather than the characters. Its a shame, because what they show of the people, it could have been a much better movie had it refocused the narrative on them and went the way of The Prophecy (1995). I mean, anyone who has seen the Walken as Angel Gabriel will be comparing the two any way.
- It takes itself way too seriously for a film that doesn’t endear you to any of the characters and promotes the grotesque. This film would have worked better with a nod and wink to the audience.
- The gore is too much for me. It wasn’t that it seemed overly real, but the exact opposite. It had this strange ability to knock believability right out the park and also make me turn away.
- The film was way too dark in places. I’m sure it worked really well in the cinema, but I lost so much of the action because I can’t get the room I was watching it in pitch black.
If you want a film about a loner trying to save a pregnant lady, watch Children of Men. If you want a film about angels not being such the ‘Angels’ we expect them to be, watch Dogma. You want a movie about a waring heaven and angels on Earth, watch The Prophecy. Want Paul Bettany at his best, watch Gangster No 1.
Point is, there’s nothing this film can offer you that a better film out there can.
Length 1h 47
Director Ben Falcone
About Two childhood best friends reunite as an unlikely crime-fighting superhero duo when one invents a formula that gives ordinary people superpowers.
- Jason Bateman certainly looked to be having fun as the miscreant The Crab. On anyone else it really would have looked and felt cringe. However, he has enough of that dry smarm to get away with it.
- The premise is pretty good. The idea that whatever it was caused villains and the heroes have to be manufactured is pretty good. There’s a really decent film here, under the McCarthy-branded humour.
- The film took too much time setting it all up. I don’t need to see these two friends as children. I don’t need to see Lydia’s daily routine if it has absolutely no baring on the plot. It doesn’t endear me to the characters, it doesn’t provide a challenge for the two to over come. It just felt like a waste.
- The bad guy motivation was a bit, meh. If I cared enough, I could scrutinise it and it would all fall apart. As it stands though, I don’t care enough to actually pin point what it is that makes it so shit.
- That. Dance. Scene?! What the actual fuck?
- I really don’t like the crude humour, or the “You didn’t get it the first time, so I’m going to repeat it” thing McCarthy does. Its all humour that doesn’t stick the landing for me and it got old about ten movies ago.
- Raw chicken?! I know they weren’t eating raw chicken, but it was a bloody good imitation and it made me sick to my stomach.
I’ll be sticking to my House of Mouse for my superheroes from now on. Thank you.
Length 1h 51
Director Wes Craven
About At the end of her book tour, Sidney visits her home town after ten long years. As she catches up with old friends, her return not only brings back memories but also beckons the return of Ghostface.
- Emma Roberts has that ability to be believable in many forms. Perhaps that wasn’t as true back in 2011, but now that she has a chocked full CV, you can see that she’s versatile and creative. That final act is where she truly shines. In fact, its the final act that makes this film, almost, bearable.
- Totally forgot Hayden Panettiere was in this movie and she was delightful. She pathed the way for the tv series character Audrey. The idea that there was a trilogy in which Panettiere continued to star sounds amazing and it is just a shame this bombed.
- I love the concept they bring to the film about technology. The use of it, the commentary on it. Brilliant. Its execution in the plot is not fully invested so it feels more like lip service, outside of a few scenes.
- I still don’t buy Sidney Prescott as an actress. I always find that a bizarre conclusion, but she’s just too… internal and shy.
- Mary McDonnell as Kate Roberts irks me. She seems to be in a completely different movie to everyone else.
- How wasted was Adam Brody?! I kind of get the feeling he was cast when his character had a bigger role. I remember it being announced he was going to be in the film and then being so disappointed.
- Those fake openings were bordering on Scary Movie territory. I sort of see what it was trying to achieve, but it didn’t quite get over the lampooning the lampoon to belong in this movie.
- The film hasn’t aged well for me and suffers a similar fate to Ghostbusters Answer the Call (2016). It relies too much on the past and almost tries to belittle it in order to bring in a new audience.
It’s not a ‘pass the torch’, so the focus upon the teens in Woodsboro feels a little contrived and shallow. Yet, its not really a film about the original characters either; we get too little about what they’ve been doing for that to be the case.
- The bigger issue with this film is that it unbalances a trilogy and lacks enough to bring it into the franchise to make a quadrilogy.
Each time I rewatch this film, I kind of hope that it’s better than it actually is. Every time I end up disappointed and promising myself I won’t waste any more time watching it again.
My advice is to stick to the trilogy, or if you want to branch out, check out the tv series.
Length 1h 30
Director Max Barbakow
About Stuck in a time loop, two wedding guests develop a budding romance while living the same day over and over again.
- Andy Samberg is just a delight in a role that was totally made for him. While there’s still that 99 goofball humour, there are layers to the character of Nyles giving Samberg a chance to show his range. It could not come at a better time for the SNL alumni, given that the 99 are bowing out.
- It might seem a little jarring at first, but stick with it. I’ve not seen as clever a time loop since Star Trek Discovery’s episode Magic to Make the Sanest Man Go Mad (S01 Ep07). Its a fresh take, while acknowledging everything that’s come before.
- Its that sweet spot run time. With a time loop, there is a sweet spot. Groundhog Day, depending on when I watch, doesn’t always hit the mark and I drift in the middle. This has me for the whole thing.
- It is a film you’re going to want to watch again. I have the feeling its the sort of film you learn more and discover things you missed each time you watch it. There’s also some deep philosophical shit going down that I think had I not been day-2 post Covid jab, I’d have a better insight to.
- There’s some STEM shit too. Proving you’re never too old to learn… shit.
- JK Simmons. That’s all you’re getting.
- You don’t get a full resolution for Sarah and her family. It may leave a few viewers frustrated.
- Get ready to feel your HIMYM rage all over again. Within five minutes of seeing Cristin Milioti as Sarah, you will not only be mad about the ending, or the fact that the last series took place over the course of a few days. You will be mad that they cast this great, amazing person and wasted her.
Cannot wait to watch this on 9th November 2021. Its become my new Groundhog and Rex Manning Day.
Length 1h 47
Director Allan Moyle
About A group of misfits who work at a small, independent record shop help their manager collect money to buy the enterprise. However, they discover kinship while also trying to fight off a corporate giant.
The Prince Charles Cinema introduced me to this film full of familiar faces. It was one of their Teen Pyjama Party movie marathons and this was the only film on the list I hadn’t seen. Ever.
It played first and I absolutely loved it.
This was probably late 2015 or early 2016 and ever since I’ve kept a regular appointment to celebrate Rex Manning day, on or around the 8th April.
- This is the definition of ‘misfits’. The narrative centres around a group of teens who openly admit they hate each other. It’s not a clique or a Saturday detention, but the big bad world. They’re all brought together by Joe, this awesome character that everyone who watches would wish to have in their life.
- Despite its stupid age rating, this film covers some pretty hard topics; drug abuse, social expectations and even suicide. Jesus, I dare you not to tear up as Deb says “You gonna fix me Joe? Okay, Fix me, I’ll listen.”
Okay, so it doesn’t provide any answers, but it does help anyone who has been there a little less alone. Sometimes that’s all we need, to know that no one really has it together.
- The music! There’s a reason the soundtrack did so well. It’s killer. Yes, having around 100 songs featured would me that you could cherry pick for the released album, but even still you’ll appreciate it for the 90s eclectic time capsule it is.
- It is a quotable hot mess! From the insights of Lucas, to the stoner mumblings of Mark you’re third and forth viewings will have you calling out those lines.
- Damn the Man! This is another case of Studio interference. What you watch does not mesh with the rating it has. This should be a 15, that’s certainly the demographic.
It feels so sanitised and lacking authenticity. Yes, it’s a detriment to the film, but watch it in spite of that, please. This is not the cause of anyone who had any passion in the film, but ‘the Man’. I just hope, somewhere, there’s the footage and money that could create a Director’s cut.
- I’ve seen many different versions of the film. I think there are at least three out in circulation. The version I watched tonight was badly edited, both in terms of scenes and sound. This is particularly noticeable when Gina seduces Rex; you hear a bar and a half of ‘A Girl Like You’ and it suddenly cuts off, when you know it should really be fading in. It’s not until a while later, perhaps indicating the addition of a scene, that the Edwyn Collins’ track returns to ‘compliment’ the proceedings.
- Aside from being an obvious distraction, the edits also highlight the issues with the plot. I’ll be honest, I don’t care too much, however I can’t help but being banged over the head with the errors when its being screamed at me.
Damn the man, save the Empire. Every year, on the 8th April.
Length 1h 28
Director Les Mayfield
About College guys Stoney and Dave find and thaw a caveman, Link, and pass him off as a student. Link takes his time to adjust to the new ways of life, but he also helps the duo find their cool quotient.
- MVP is the delightful Stoney. What a beautiful, sexually ambiguous, kind and cute character who charmed from the very start. The mannerisms and insights this character has are what made this movie for me. He brings the laughs, the ‘awwww’s and the moral compass.
- This is the better fish-out-of-water movie for Brendan Fraser. It’s certainly his best ‘man in a loin cloth’ in modern day too. He’s perfect as the unfrozen Cave Man turns California surfer dude.
- It’s a short and humours film for those who love The Goonies and anything by John Hughes.
- If you think too long on it, its just a rip off of Weird Science. Interloper is provided to the bottom feeders to improve their status. It’s a shame, because with a little bit of a rewrite this could be something a little more charming and free of the comparison.
- As much as I love Sean Astin, his character is so shitty. Everything he does is motivated by his dick, and it shows. This isn’t some sweet guy who just doesn’t get lucky. He is manipulative, negative and willing to fuck everyone over for what?! A girl who doesn’t honour the girl code and dumps Link for the sole reason of being a ‘cave man’. Riiiiiiiight, she’s a keeper.
It has the potential to be a cult classic and its most definitely better than George of the Jungle. For me, its the issues with Astin’s character that will stop me having this high on any rewatch list,
length 1h 44
Director Walter Hill
- Controversial, but the MVP of this movie for me is James Belushi. He has that humour and ‘swagger’ that I’m more familiar in seeing on the amazing Bradley Whitford. This character of Art is my favourite type of archetype. Why? Fuck knows. But there it is.
- Arnold Schwarzenegger is as on form as he always is. Not an Oscar winning performance, but lets face it, we wouldn’t want it any other way.
- The pairing of Schwarzenegger and Belushi is what makes this a good buddy-cop movie. They’re chalk and cheese, but their differences don’t evolve into an offensive hatred. In fact, I’d say these two would have worked well as regular partners.
- Perhaps its watching the film out of the time in which it was made, but it wasn’t funny. The only times I did laugh, were mostly out of shock.
- The partnership of Art and Gallagher doesn’t really work for me narratively. It’s almost as if the character of Art was designed for a younger actor and a probie cop. It’s a shame because it would have given an opportunity for much more character development that would see him becoming the lead in his own duo by the film’s end.
- I lost a little interest about half way through. Around the time they question Gina Gershon’s Cat. I felt as if I missed something along the way and that it was a shoe-horned attempt at getting a female character some screen time.
It wasn’t the film I was expecting and it is flawed, however it is a decent watch and, who’d have thought it, the duo of Schwarzenegger and Belushi really works.
Length 1h 52
Director Don Siegal
About Frank, a convict who is sent to Alcatraz, the most feared prison in the world, decides to escape from captivity despite the challenges that come his way.
- It’s a mellow film, light on dialogue but full of presence. Everyone involved keeps you engaged and hooked. It proves that a film doesn’t have to be all loud noises and action to invest you in the narrative.
- Controversial opinion, but I preferred this to Shawshank Redemption. Why, I cannot explain. Perhaps its the lack of hype surrounding this, or the addition of Clint Eastwood. It may even be its setting at Alcatraz or the much shorter running time, but I certainly find this a much better offering to the genre.
- Baby faced-ish Fred Ward! I cannot say this enough; Fred Ward improves any film just by being in it.
- I found the mental health and wellbeing of the inmates a harrowing and difficult watch. Obviously, I know that these were men who are being punished for crimes and perhaps not deserving of the empathy I feel watching. However, the theme of isolation and the lack of behaviour correction through constructive activities does manifest in destructive and harmful actions by some.
- I hate that the narrative has everyone telling Morris how hard it is to escape. For a film that is economic of its dialogue, it goes to the opposite extreme to tell the audience this is the man who is going to escape.
The first time Morris meets the Warden, the sole purpose of that meeting is for the Warden to tell Morris its almost impossible to escape. In fact, its almost half way through the movie before Morris verbalises any wish of wanting to escape.
- It’s a rather quiet film. While that is a bonus, it does require attention. This is not a film you can watch if you’re distracted with your phone or if you’re remotely tired. Between the beautiful sunshine coming through the window and my vitamin D deficiency, I did find myself drifting off and I had to pick the film back up when I woke up.
Better than Shawshank and based on an escape still shrouded in mystery, I’ll most certainly return to this again. Between this and Dirty Harry, this is an actor/director combination that really works.
Length 1h 49
Director Gail Macuso
- Well, doesn’t Josh Gad make an adorable fury narrator?! It’s why I probably had so much difficulty with the deaths; Gad had me invested right from the start.
- The aged makeup on Dennis Quaid and Marg Helgenberger was a bit ropey there at the end. Little bit like how they always aged Patrick Stewart on Star Trek.
- This is a sequel?! What the hell! How did I not know this? Not that I think I missed anything. I’m just curious as to how similar it was.
- It’s rather twee, very predictable and much more like a film I’d expect from the Hallmark channel and not a cinematic outing. I know, I know…. after Marley and Me you’d think I’d learn my lesson regarding the health and wellbeing of a dog, but it wasn’t just that. It was all the plot points that not only where all present and accounted for, they all came at the expected time too.
- Oh I cried so hard. I thought I could handle it, but nope. I balled like a baby so many times. Yes, it felt cathartic. However, who the hell thinks its a good idea to make these sort of films? I know its my own fault for putting the bastard on like, but do you know what happens when you try and hug a cat?!
There is no other reason to watch this film unless you need to cry. Literally, the only reason.
Length 2h 20
Director Aaron Sorkin
About Molly Bloom, who runs a high-stakes poker game for prominent stars and mafia, finds herself in trouble after the FBI seek interest in her profile.
- Much like many other Aaron Sorkin products, Molly’s Game is fast talking, clever in its execution and able to surprise you in the final moments.
- I like that Idris Elba’s character was fictionalised. By having that creative change, it allows the narrative to work slightly better for the screen. At the end of the day, changes had to happen. This choice streamlines them all.
- Jessica Chastain. Bloody hell, she’s a little bit brilliant isn’t she? I don’t know why I’ve previously avoided her movies, but I most definitely will be taking a look at some of her other roles. In this, she gives us an evolutionary performance and her narration was impeccable.
- Kevin Costner was another surprise addition to this film. While he doesn’t have much screen time, he certainly makes an impact not only in terms of the narrative, but on the viewer too.
- For me, it’s a little on the long side. While comfortable enough on a first viewing, I’m sure the episodic nature will keep it from being a repeated watch.
- I’m not a mob girl. I don’t like gangster movies and I never have. Now while this does stick to the biographical and criminal side there are times were I worried in which way it was going to go.
An excellent biography that could be watched alongside I’Tonya or American Made. It’s not going to be top of anyone’s ‘favourite films’, but its certainly got the Sorkin seal of quality.