24 May 2017

The Edge of the World, 1937 - ★★½

Despite appearing to be a well made film this didn't really do much for me.

May 24, 2017 at 09:48PM

King Charles III, 2017 - ★★★★

I liked this a lot even though I hoped the second half wouldn't play out as it did.

May 24, 2017 at 08:08AM

19 May 2017

Alien: Covenant, 2017 - ★★★

It's all good until the aliens turn up and surely that's a huge problem for a film in the Alien series. Things aren't helped by the crew bouncing between idiotic and cliched decisions and even Waterson's mostly sensible Daniels becomes annoying by the end of the film. Those cliched moments feel like ticking off a checklist of things an alien film needs and at best add little, but often feel closer to parody. One shot of the Alien looks like it's part of the Hollyoaks title sequence and in another moment (or was it the same) it was a surprise/relief it didn't turn into a Spaceballs song and dance. All of the aliens look awful; badly animated and out of place, later CG humans are thrown around and you just have to wonder why. The final plot developments are so obvious I actually groaned when they began to be played out. People always say that a sequel or remake doesn't detract from the original film and I usually agree but this comes dangerously close to undermining the original films.

And yet having complained about nearly every aspect of the film (and I haven't really gone into the problematic plot) I did enjoy myself far more than I should have

May 19, 2017 at 11:16PM

The Hollow Crown: Henry VI - part 1, 2016 - ★★★★

Watched on Wednesday May 17, 2017.

May 19, 2017 at 10:48PM

10 May 2017

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, 2017 - ★★★★

It's all over the place but in a way which works far more often than it fails. For two hours it provided enough entertainment to distract me from the real world and that feels like an achievement. I'm also pleased I saw this in 3D because it did actually add something to what is already a visually impressive film.

May 10, 2017 at 09:39PM

07 May 2017

A Conspiracy of Faith, 2016 - ★★★½

More cinematic than the other films in the series but still suffers many of the same problems. The biggest issue is that once again the characters do something reckless and/or ridiculous that would seriously undermine the case. It's a shame because the characters and their relationships are great and it successfully manages to be both dark and humourous.

May 07, 2017 at 06:28PM

01 May 2017

Swallows and Amazons, 2016 - ★★★

There's something quite charming about how all of this looks but there's not really much of a story. As harsh as it may be the child performances are distracting and not strong enough to carry the film.

May 01, 2017 at 05:18PM

The Absent One, 2014

Withholding a rating because even though I only watched this in the last week I can't remember enough about it (which is a sign of my failing memory and mixing it up with Follow The Money, rather than the quality). Like the previous film, It still feels like a feature length TV episode but a good one. There was something about this I was going to say but it completely escapes me now.

May 01, 2017 at 04:35PM

25 April 2017

The Love Witch, 2016 - ★★★½

There's so much to appreciate and enjoy in Anna Biller's film (her name is most of the credits). Unfortunately there's not quite enough to sustain a 2 hour running time. This would have been so much better if it was less than 90 minutes and also a lot easier to rewatch.

April 24, 2017 at 10:49PM

18 April 2017

Easter Parade, 1948 - ★★★★

It may just be a collection of song and dance sequences, with very little story, but what songs and dances.

It was also great to see Judy Garland in something other that The Wizard of Oz and "why didn't you tell me I was in love with you?"

April 18, 2017 at 10:49AM

Moana, 2016 - ★★★½

I was expecting more from this and found that the moments that didn't work stood out much more than those that did, which doesn't make it a bad film. There's something odd about the human animation, it has a rotoscoped/motion-capture that didn't feel like "Disney" to me. Only two of the songs stood out (You're Welcome and Shiny) so I still need to be converted to Lin-Manuel Miranda. That chicken made me laugh far too much though.

April 18, 2017 at 10:44AM

The Great Muppet Caper, 1981 - ★★★★

Second part of a Muppet double bill and another I don't remember seeing before. I think I preferred this slightly over the first movie because it has more of a story. It feels like a film from a different time and would work just as well without any Muppets but would be nowhere near as much fun.

I'm in amazement at the cycling sequence, even after finding how (vaguely) how it was done. I genuinely can't remember the last time I wondered how something was possible.

April 18, 2017 at 10:35AM

The Muppet Movie, 1979 - ★★★★

I was surprised to find that I'd never seen this before (at least not as an adult that I remember). It's enjoyable and has aged really well, with only the cameos placing it as a (nearly) 40 year old film. The practical full body effects are so much more fascinating and magical than their modern CGI counterparts. It's only a slight story which now feels overly familiar but it's told and performed with such love it's hard not to be impressed.

April 18, 2017 at 10:31AM

11 April 2017

My Life as a Zucchini, 2016 - ★★★★

Ron Swanson! I'm convinced Nick Offerman make anything worth watching and this is no exception. Even without Offerman this would still be fantastic. Beautifully animated, lovingly told, it feels so honest and true to life despite being animated but that's no surprise when it's from the writer of Girlhood and Tomboy.

It's best not to think about the ending too much or you start to realise how messy things may become which is a slightly disappointing conclusion.

April 11, 2017 at 10:55PM

04 April 2017

A Good Day to Die Hard, 2013 - ★★½

It's not that bad, it's not that good but it certainly isn't a Die Hard film

April 04, 2017 at 10:10PM

Listen to Me Marlon, 2015 - ★★★

Interesting enough but didn't do much to completely capture my attention.

April 04, 2017 at 10:04PM

29 March 2017

The Fits, 2015 - ★★★

A film I'd been looking forward to seeing since it's US release last September. Unfortunately it didn't really work for me, I found it too slow and lacking something and even though it's only 71 minutes long it felt much longer.

I had a sense of what this was trying to achieve so perhaps seeing it another time or in another frame of mind I'd appreciate it differently. Or perhaps it just suffers in the UK from coming after The Falling which I loved and is hard not to think about.

March 29, 2017 at 08:28PM

23 March 2017

Beauty and the Beast, 2017 - ★★★½

I'm unsure if there's anything particularly wrong with this remake; it seems faithful, looks great and I enjoyed it but it's lacking any real magic. It feels like an imitation, a pantomime using Disney costumes and I was just left wondering why you'd choose to watch this over the animated version. The moment with the ballgown reveal was quite special though.

March 23, 2017 at 05:24PM

19 March 2017

Our Little Sister, 2015 - ★★★★

Koreeda is becoming one of my favourite directors with each film I see. This is a film where you just enjoy spending time with all the characters. Others have compared it to Ozu but I was mostly reminded of the non-fantasy Ghibli films.

March 19, 2017 at 10:14AM

Warcraft, 2016 - ★★

I really hoped that I'd like this and it wouldn't be as bad as most people were making out. Unfortunately there isn't much to recommend and for me it just came across as fantasy nonsense. Everytime it switched to an animated sequence or back to the humans it threw me out of what little engagement I had. One positive this was the way different languages were portrayed on screen, although I think this was only in one scene early in the film.

March 19, 2017 at 10:07AM

Demolition, 2015 - ★★★★

I had a feeling I'd like this but didn't think I'd like it as much as this. I'm not entirely sure why, it perhaps isn't a great film but something about it just connected with me.

March 19, 2017 at 10:03AM

14 March 2017

Florence Foster Jenkins, 2016 - ★★★

A fairly unremarkable film about a really remarkable character. It's entertaining and amusing with really strong performances from all. However, it's hard to know how to feel about the manipulation and overall tragicness, which is portrayed sympathetically but lacks any real depth.

March 14, 2017 at 06:52PM

11 March 2017

The Greasy Strangler, 2016 - ★★★½

What.
The.
Actual.
Brilliant.
Fuck.

Starts off brilliantly but struggles to keep the momentum for the whole 90 minutes.

March 11, 2017 at 03:55PM

09 March 2017

O.J.: Made in America, 2016 - ★★★★★

Completely fascinating

5 episode TV version on iplayer (although they paired up the first four episodes)

March 09, 2017 at 08:48PM

05 March 2017

The Man from U.N.C.L.E., 2015 - ★★★★

A nice reminder of why people once got excited about Guy Ritchie films. This is slickly put together, stylish, funny and much better than the often overblown nonsense of Bond. I guess a sequel is unlikely which is a shame because I'd like to see more.

March 05, 2017 at 06:19PM