Saturday, 13 August 2011

Film Review: SIDEWAYS (2004)

Co-Writer/Director: Alexander Payne
Running time: 126 mins (approx)
Certification (UK): 15

Genre: Comedy/Drama/Romance
UK Release date: 28th January 2005

Watched on Sky+ Saturday 13th August 2011.


As this is the 150th film I’ve seen this year I wanted to watch a film I enjoyed first time around, and what better, I thought, than the 2004 wine comedy ‘Sideways’. Well, it happened to have it on the Sky+ hard drive and it was due a watching anyway. I did enjoy this film quite a lot first time around, probably because I could identify with one of the characters. This time, maybe a little less, but I still found it a pretty enjoyable watch. Here’s a brief summary before I give you my thoughts on the matter.

A lot of it doesn’t really make any kind of sense

When the news of Sucker Punch started coming out  and as well as the trailer. I was very excited it looked really cool and I was excited about Zack Synder’s first original work. Sadly it’s a major misfire.

Film Review: HIGH NOON (1952)

Director: Fred Zinnemann
Running time: 90 mins (approx)
Certification (UK): U

Genre: Drama/Western
USA Release date: 30th July 1952

Watched on Sky+ Saturday 13th August 2011.


I have seen this film a couple of times before, in my youth. Both times I didn’t rate it much, if I was going to watch a Western, I wanted lots of gunfights and in this film there’s only one. Having matured slightly… (Ok, a lot), and on several recommendations, I decided to give it another go. In the intervening time I did see, and like, a remake of this called Outland (1981) starring Sean Connery. But back to the original, I must admit I liked it a lot more than I thought I would. Yes, it is dated, but it’s still a great piece of storytelling; it’s about a man prepared to do the right thing despite the odds stacked against him. I will give my thoughts after this brief summary.

Friday, 12 August 2011

100th Review! Psycho (1960)

Even after over 50 years “Psycho” is resonate as ever. It is a film that stays fresh in the mind long after viewing and that is how strong the impression of this film is. Master of suspense director Alfred Hitchcock co-ordinated every shot of the film with great finesse and often the film is considered his his best work. "Psycho" is revolutionary and will still be as satisfying an experience in years to come. So far from the five or so films, I have seen of his, this is certainly the most chilling, thrilling, suspenseful and satisfying so far. It is an amazing achievement for cinema because of how it changed horror forever.

The Darjeeling Limited

       **** out of ****

       I first watched Wes Anderson’s “The Darjeeling Limited” about two-to-three years ago. It was my first film in terms of the writer-director-auteur, and it wasn’t exactly a warm welcome to his wonderful world. I found it dry, sporadically funny and sometimes amusing, but nonetheless hollow at its core. It was lacking in both sincerity and depth for me. Then I saw “Rushmore”, “The Royal Tenenbaums”, “Bottle Rocket”, “The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou”, and when it released, “Fantastic Mr. Fox”. Then I revisited “Darjeeling”. And I say that in a more literal sense than you may think.

     The full review.

Thursday, 11 August 2011

Dawn of the Dead (1978)

    **** out of ****

Now THIS is the kind of movie that earned George Romero the title as the “King of the Zombies”, and I mean it. “Dawn of the Dead” is his masterpiece, among others. It arrives after “Night of the Living Dead” and continues from where that film left off. The dead walk the earth, as they should in every single zombie film in existence, but they do it in an odd, almost unique way here. Romero understands zombies, and he’s one of the only filmmakers out there able to use them as social satire. He re-invented this genre. And he created something much more here.


Brick (2005)

For a debut feature Rian Johnson sure does create some fresh and special with Brick. Joseph Gordon-Levitt's powerful deep performance that is memorable and hypnotizing. A character with an outline so bold and over-used that is given characteristics so fascinating along with a corrupted innocence that drives this dark menacing film. Seeing characters that have been being used for decades is not the most appealing with a plot that battles to keep away from becoming distasteful and exploitive. Which it achieves at avoiding due to Rian Johnson's slick fantastic script, crisp, brilliantly paced storytelling, and visuals that would make any film noir aficionado feel obligated to praise.

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Top 10 Movies of the Year - 1991

1991, part 2 of my 21-part list counting down my 10 favorite movies of each year since the year of my birth. I'll try to make it a light read.

#10 - City Slickers

Directed by: Ron Underwood

One of the funnier Billy Crystal comedies, City Slickers is a humorous mid-life crisis modern-time western with a fun cast and great writing.

My New Youtube Channel!

Hey everyone I thought I'd put up the link to my new youtube account, which I will soon be adding videos to in the future.

Tuesday, 9 August 2011

One of the Best Movies of the Summer

James Macavoy, Michael Fassbender, Jenifer Lawrence, Kevin Bacon

Directed by Matthew Vaughn

I regret not seeing X Men First Class in the movies because it’s one of the best movies of the summer.

The film tells the story of Magneto who is played by Michael Fassbender and Xavier played by James Macavoy. It shows how their relationship started and eventually ends. It also shows how other characters begin as well that we see in the other X Men films.

Inception (2010) Review

Directed & Written by: Christopher Nolan
Produced by: Christopher Nolan
Genre: Drama, Action, Mystery & suspense
Runtime: 123 Minutes

What is this film like? It’s a mind bender, it’s an intense action film, it’s full of mind boggling entertainment, and many other great things that make good films great. "Inception" boasts character and huge story depth beyond anything of this decade. Starring major Hollywood hotshot Leonardo DiCaprio alongside Michael Caine, Tom Hardy, Ellen Page and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Inception has a terrific cast with characters that will sustain your interest from start to end. Inception is one of the most complex and mind-boggling films there is, If not, the most. That is what adds to its excellence. A film about dreams within dreams and all this talk of the sub-conscious mind makes this film unique and stands up with the best films of all time in my book. With director Christopher Nolan on board who is also the writer of this film, did in impeccable job. 

Monday, 8 August 2011

Film Review: SHREK FOREVER AFTER (2010)

Director: Mike Mitchell
Running time: 90 mins (approx)
Certification (UK): U

Genre: Animation/Comedy/Adventure
UK Release date: 2nd July 2010

Watched on Sky+ Monday 8th August 2011.


I must admit that I have a bit of a soft spot for the Shrek films. I don’t know what it is; I guess I just like the brand of humour in them and (for the most part) the likable characters. The third one (I felt) was a bit of a mess, but they appear to have got it nearer the mark for the final instalment… until they decide to make some more, that is. I will give you my thoughts after this brief summary… sponsored by ‘Pete’s Potions’, available at all major ‘Fairy Godmother’ outlets nationwide.

Film Review: TAKERS (2010)

Co-Writer/Director: John Luessenhop
Running time: 107 mins (approx)
Certification (UK): 12

Genre: Action/Crime/Thriller
UK Release date: 1st October 20110

Watched on Sky+ Sunday 7th August 2011.


I do like a good heist movie and was looking forward to this one when I noticed it in the TV listings. I knew little about it and so decided to watch it ‘blind’, as such, so I could see it unbiased by the opinions of others. It’s an interesting film that tries hard to keep the viewer’s attention with many plot twists and plenty of action. If anything, though, it ends up getting a little too complicated for its own good and there are a few too many plot twists to satisfy most. Not that it’s a bad film, it’s quite well made with some good performances… But more of my thoughts later, here’s a brief summary first.

Top 5 Dystopian Movies


a society characterized by human misery, as squalor, oppression, disease, and overcrowding.

#5 - A Clockwork Orange
Directed by: Stanley Kubrick

A sadistically brutal and often humorous satire on violence, A Clockwork Orange is one of the great movies of it's time. Set in London in the not-so-distant future, roving gangs of violent rapists and murderers run rampant -- a dystopia in it's most raw, human form.

Sunday, 7 August 2011

Final Destination 3

    **1/2 out of ****
 With James Wong back in the director’s chair, “Final Destination 3” already has plenty of potential. I watched it and tried to enjoy myself, and I did. Wong is good at making movies like this. He knows how to stage death scenes and plot his movies in this franchise in an almost satirical, funny way. This installment is closer to what I liked about the first film than the first sequel, and it hits the spot, for what it is. Nothing can save it from its stupid, ludicrous plot and its shallow characters, but look at the bright side: at least you get to see them all die in genuinely creative ways.

              Probably the biggest down-side, aside from what I’ve already described, is that Tony Todd does not have a physical appearance in this film. He does, however, lend his vocals to a few cameo voice-roles. You’ll notice them off the bat if you know what Todd talks like; and how distinctive his awesome voice is. Oh yes: it is awesome. And you know it.

Blow Out

     **** out of ****

       “Blow Out” isn’t the most popular thriller in existence, and usually I’d have the ability to seek out the sources to why it’s so obscure and even forgotten, but alas, there are none. Besides…I don’t think it’s all that forgotten anymore. The film, written and directed by the exquisite Brian DePalma, was recently re-issued through the Criterion Collection; and they have never been so right about giving a first-rate thriller another chance at success. There is an audience for “Blow Out”. There always has been. Yet, I hear nobody talking about it, hardly anybody I know has seen it, but I want to change that as much as I can. Here we go.

         Plenty of people admire DePalma. His films are richly drenched in suspense, beautifully shot, and masterfully crafted. Aside from “Scarface”, I believe that this is one of the best DePalma films yet. That either means something to you or it doesn’t, and if it doesn’t, then you might as well forget about ever seeing this wonderful and skillfully-made thriller. And that, my friend, is too bad for you.

Fritz the Cat (1972) X-Rated Animated Film!

How did I find out about this film? Watching Channel 4’s Top 100 Greatest Cartoons and this was at number 56. It looked different wild, and challenging, and that’s what it was and more. It just about has something for everyone to be offended at but it has a unique charm to it. Impressively, it’s the first X-Rated animated film, so it obviously endorsed a new breed of films of this kind. Director and screenplay writer of the film Ralph Bakshi got quite some controversy over the creation of this film, and today the film is considered a piece of art. Art you could say yes, but pretty raunchy art.
Read Full Review here>>>

SUPER 8 (2011)

Writer/Director: J.J. Abrams
Running time: 112 mins (approx)
Certification (UK): 12A

Genre: Mystery/Sci-Fi/Thriller
UK Release date: 5th August 2011

Watched at the cinema Saturday 6th August 2011.