Archives for category: films

Today I met up with my friend Tam, who I haven’t seen for ages. Was lovely to catch up. We had decided to meet at the O2 in late afternoon to watch two movies, and, in-between, grab a bite to eat. The two movies for the day were ‘Dark Skies’ and ‘Scary Movie V’. Both of the films were very different, and my reviews are below.

FILM REVIEW: DARK SKIES

If you believe in aliens, then this is definitely a film to watch. This film, directed by Steven Soderbergh, is an American sci-fi horror/thriller. At times it is quite laughable and one that doesn’t scare you that much. It is more of suspense that horror, if I am honest. As with all films like this, I am getting tired of the Paranormal Activity film-based approach, I mean with a similar set up, cameras being installed to monitor things, and something sinister happening. The film is like an amalgamation of the plots of the numerous Paranormal Activity films and the 2013 film, ‘Mama’. Yet the film fails to deliver in the way that these films have done. There is really nothing unique, apart from the added factor of alien lifeforms being the basis of this film, as opposed to a possessed demon/troubled spirit.

In light of this, the score of this film from me isn’t very high, scoring a benign 4 out of 10. Yes its something to watch if you need to kill some time, but if you have something better to do, then you’ll be disappointed. Perhaps however, it is better to see this film at the cinema as opposed to at home, as you will get the big screen experience and perhaps be slightly more scared than you would be watching it on a 42 inch LED TV.

FILM REVIEW: SCARY MOVIE V

I will be blunt, it is a case of been there done that and bought the t-shirt four times before, and now it feels like the new t-shirt is a bit dull and boring. In other words, the design could do with an upgrade/refreshing. Nonetheless, I was amused throughout and found it laughable, especially with it ripping the majority of the story-line from Mama, and adding in the other horrors to the mix, before making is satirical touches to them. All in all a good laugh, and for that I’d score it 5 out of 10. You definitely know what type of film you are going in for, and what to expect. So if you’re in the mood to be amused, then this is a film to watch, either at the cinema, or if you don’t get round to it when its out, then wait for it on DVD, BluRay or online streaming.

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On the IMDB website this film has been given an overall rating of 7.4 out of 10.  If I am blunt, I would not give it such a high score.  While I accept that this was directed by Danny Boyle, a very creative and talented individual, I have to admit I was left some what disappointed.  For me the film is worth a good 6 but nothing higher.  Perhaps my friend Matt, with whom I watched this film with at the O2, may differ in his view, but nonetheless it is mine.

As for the film, I found it cumbersome at times and protracted.  It flitted from one thing to the next, and could give rise to some confusion as to what was reality and what was not.  Indeed, it was a bit like watching the film, ‘Inception’, raising many questions throughout the film than answered.  To say it almost turned me into a trance is quite close to it. That said, it was enjoyable, and the soundtrack behind the scenes that unfolded before ones eyes on the big screen was exceptional.  It truly did correlate well to the film throughout.  It is also nice to see that a number of films, that have been realised this year, are set in London, which is a fabulous city and one which I feel should feature more in the films ahead.

James McAvoy, as Simon, and Rosario Dawson, as Elizabeth, were the key actors within the film and they did a marvellous job.  James is very good looking, so for the gay-guys and women out there your eyes are in for a treat.  Rosario is very talented at what she does and I look forward to seeing future films with her taking a leading role.

The storyline behind the film was solid, more-or-less, and told the story of many lives colliding together with what would seem unrelated individuals – criminals, an art auctioneer and hypnotherapist.  So for that, it was very original and my hats off to the writers Joe Ahearne and John Hodge.

In summary – a good film, but as stated by my good friend Matt in his blog, its one that you can wait for to come out on DVD, or for those more advanced with technology – BluRay and streaming through such services as Netflix and Sky Movies.

This film promised a lot and delivered with an all-star cast.  Just like a classic novel every moment was savored.  The story told cannot be said to be truly melodious throughout, with periods of anguish, animosity and things from the past being stirred once again from the lives of the characters.

It was a film full of sophistication and class throughout, and Dustin Hoffman, as director, did a sterling job in this creation.   To my surprise, as commented by my learned friend Matt, Mr Hoffman did not feature in his own film, which I would have thought he might have wished to do.  With the likes of Dame Maggie Smith, (as Jean Horton), Tom Courtenay (as Reginald Paget), Billy Connolly (as Wilf Bond) and Pauline Collins (as Cissy Robson), it was always going to be the case that the film would be epic.

The Quartet is a relaxing and peaceful film, and therefore it will not appeal to everyone.  I would compare it to Marmite; you’ll either love it or hate it!  If you are looking for an action packed, jaw dripping, eye engrossing film, this isn’t the one for you.  If you want to retreat to a more sedate, tranquil place and unwind, then you’ll love it.  This is a film you can either watch in the cinema, or wait for its release on Blu-ray and DVD.  Unlike the ‘Life of Pi’, I would not say that it is absolutely mandatory to watch on the big screen.

Overall a beautiful film, and as it will not appeal to everyone, I’d give it a solid score of 7/10.

I was fortunate, as a Cineworld Unlimited member, to be able to see an early screening of this film. The remainder of you will have to wait until 20th December in the UK.

It is definitely a film you MUST go and see. I say it’s obligatory as its awesome. It was heart warming, mesmerising and deep – one that stirs so many emotions inside yourself (or at least it had that effect on me). Albeit, throughout the latter part of the film my dear friend Matt, kept offering, and myself denying, a sip of delightful single malt whisky from his-hip flask.

Matt aside (dare I say it?), and getting back to the film, Ang Lee, as director, did a stunning job with all of the effects and hooking the attention of the audience in portraying the story told in the 2001 novel by Yann Martel. It tells a story of a 16 year old boy that sets sail for Canada on a fateful voyage from which the true story comes alive. It’s a story about survival and how many lessons can be learnt from ones past and applied and adapted to the present situation.

Suraj Sharma, the talented actor, plays the key role and is gorgeous to say the least! He brings so much to his charming and enchanting character, and by the end had done a sterling job in bringing the story alive. He physically did look exhausted by the end! Definitely an actor to watch out for in the future ahead, and one I will keep my eye out for.

As for the locations in the film, my hats off to those that were behind this. They truly did deliver, along with those that carried out the filming. To get Matt to praise this particular aspect during the film is praise indeed, as it has to be noted it’s a very rare thing for him to do, and even rarer for him to be complimentary to me (but I know he tries).

This is a film for the family to watch and one great for a winters day, or evening. And without elaborating further and destroying the story that is told, just make sure you go and watch it in 3D at the cinema – you won’t be disappointed!

In closing, its a great film to see out 2012 and see the approach of the New Year on the imminent horizon. I can’t rate it high enough as its off the scale! You never know, you may even shed a tear at the end (like I did, as I’m a complete softy at heart)!

Great Expectations, and great they were! This was a delightful film to watch at the cinema on a late Sunday afternoon with the sun setting in the sky. A great story created by Charles Dickens with his deep and complex characters in which the story has so many levels. He was a master of story telling and the director of this version of the story really did a fantastic job at capturing the characters that Dickens so well describes. The film had dark moments, with an excellent all cast.

Watch it. You will love it as I did.

What a mesmerising, gripping, insightful and thought provoking film, and one that has been saved for the perfect moment, autumn 2012.

Seriously….I can not recommend this film enough. My colleague was correct when she said it’s a brilliant film! The film, based on a true story, is shot beautifully and very sympathetic to the situation that was in place at that time. I especially loved the history lesson at the beginning, which also seems to be shared by one of my law school friends, Zoha. While it is around 2 hours, its definitely not a ‘Twilight’ experience (as per my review below). This film does not drag, but instead keeps the viewer gripped right in the centre of the film and in their seats. The length is just right, and you couldn’t ask for a better cast with the likes of Ben Affleck, Bryan Cranston, John Goodman and Alan Arkin. Ben Affleck gave a solid performance in his character role of being the ‘rescuer’ if it were (I know, I’m probably not using the correct word), and the suspense created throughout the film was electrifying. I could feel myself tense up at times, I was completely sucked into the film the action and forgot my surroundings, and the fact that I was actually in a cinema with around 100 other people.

So in summary….three words….’GO WATCH IT!’

If that isn’t enough then just watch the trailer.

 

Its ironic, saga is an apt name for this film as it is one that went on and on and on. I in fact chuckled when it ended with the words ‘forever’ appearing on the screen. It felt like forever; that is two hours of my life that I will never get back! Apart from gorgeous Jacob, there was very little to keep me entertained and amused. It was mushy with repeated scenes of kisses between Ed and Bella, and then a mushy ending with a montage of their love story…it got so bad that my stomach started to churn, you know… like when you have a bad bout of norovirus! Yes I haven’t been particularly nice with my description of the film, but alas it is mine. Overall I’d rather stick needles in my eye, but what do I know. Out of 10, well I wont be too harsh…will score it a 5 with the redeeming feature of Taylor Lautner. Scrap that…just buy a pin up of Taylor, put it on your wall etc, be happy and then strip 4 points from my score and overall rating 1/10. That way you get peace and enjoyment at the same time!

This horror film, released this year, direct and written by Michael Bassett is more than a revelation. It is deep, it is dark and most importantly it hits worst nightmares possible. Indeed the creatures and strange characters that are depicted in this film would fit right in with images depicted by the Swiss surrealist, H R Giger, the man behind the series of films – Aliens. More can be found out about him here.

This film is definitely worth watching in 3D, so if you are thinking of skipping paying the little extra to watch it in this format, as opposed to 2D, then don’t. You will be transferred into the film, as opposed to being an observer you’ll feel part of the film.

So if you’re in the mood for a horror then I’d suggest seeing this as you wont be left feeling disappointed. I jumped throughout, and at times turned my eyes away from the screen.

Warning…only view the trailer is you’re not of a weak disposition.

Two preliminary words to say about Sinister, and that is ‘loved it’. This was a great film and one that I did not hold out much for, but that doesn’t detract from what I’ve just said. The film had me gripped from the beginning, with my senses heightened and the fear factor activated inside me!

From the opening scenes I knew this film was going to deliver, and would fulfill all the prerequisites of a horror film: to frighten, bring our most vivid nightmares to fruition, create terror and cause shock and panic. This dark film delivered from scene to scene as the suspense and questions we build up in the back of my minds. I had hairs standing up on the back of my neck and my arms at certain points.

So if you’re in the mood to be horrified, or looking for an excuse into jumping into the lap of the person you fancy and get close to, then you must see this film. If you’re faint hearted, have a heart condition or get easily frightened, then this perhaps isn’t the film for you to watch. I hear they have some animated films showing at the cinema at the moment, and you may find these more suited.

Fifty years may have passed by since the showing of ‘Doctor No’ in October 1962, starring Sean Connery, but the latest Bond film, ‘Skyfall’, shows that Bond has a future ahead and is very much alive and kicking.

While being a fan of both Sean Connery and Pierce Brosnan for their portrayals of the fictitious character James Bond, Daniel Craig has demonstrated that he is more than a one hit wonder. Now I have to be honest, I wasn’t very enamored by ‘Casino Royale’ which I found very haphazard at best and at worst…well I had better not say. However, in this latest film, Daniel brought a new spark to the eye of Bond and very much hope he has many more performances ahead. This time he seemed to make the role his own, and actually left an impression, and for his age, well he is looking rather hot!

Overall I’d rate the film 9 out of 10, and very much look forward to what comes next. It was action packed and had me gripped in my seat as the film went on. I loved the new Q, rather dashing with his glasses that would not be out of place in the film ‘A Single Man’, with a vision of the future with James’ Walther PPK. If only we had the technology available to the armed police for, it would ensure that guns could only be used by those licensed to use them. I also liked the nice touch flashing back with a bit of nostalgia with Connery’s Aston Martin used in Goldfinger (if I remember correctly). Yes, it is definitely one to watch, so why are you still here?