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Sidewaysbob

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  1. I thought it was spectacularly dull. And as for yet another evil Zuckerberg bad guy, really, come on. Is the comic it's based on better? I watched highlander afterwards and enjoyed that far more.
  2. Leon This is turning into a Luc Besson retrospective?! So this, for me is Bessons best work. And specifically the directors cut of Leon. French hit man (Jean Reno) cleans up New York that looks like 70s heatwave Paris. He saves Matilda (A very young Natalie Portman) when her family is murders by psycho nut job cop (Gary Oldman at his absolute bat shit mental best). She wants revenge, he wants to get on with his life and do his job whilst nut job cop wants drugs. This is Besson given a sack full of cash, a star studded cast and told to get on with making Hollywood defining films. This is all American gloss and glitz production, but at the same time utterly French. Portman spends a great deal of the film smoking and looking cool. The subplot of her falling in love with Leon is slightly creepy now. But it's uncomfortable rather than nasty. The New York set could be down town Paris or uptown Marseille. It looks fantastic, gritty and real. The final shoot out is classic Besson. Intimate, visceral, and compassionate all at the same time. I love this film. The directors cut adds more detail to Matilda becoming an apprentice and loses a largely pointless Leon messing up a hit scene. Besson went on to largely retread this film with the transporter and taken films, but I say this is his best film. 5 solid body shots out of 5
  3. Furlough film club. Nikita The original Frence one. Not the Hollywood hack job. And its another of my favourite directors, Luc Besson. This film kind of kicked off the stripped down gun toting assassin genre of late 90s film making. Inspiring a Hollywood remake and TV series, the girl with a gun and an attitude is now a staple of cinema. Besson is always accused of all action with no story. But Nikita tell the tale of a girl who is trained by a shadowy French agency to kill on command. With typical French flair theres lots of smoking and smouldering looks across minimalist sets. But the heart of the story is Nikita finding love and escaping from it all. I remember the film having a lot more action and more snappy French existentialism. I'd forgotten the slow build ups and long passages where nothing happened. Also smoking, you don't see smoking in films anymore. But I think it still stands up as one of Bessons better films. It's not big budget, but it feels solid and real and the action is grounded. Hollywood took the concept all the way to John Wick and 2 hours of genocidal mayhem. This is better. 4 packs of Gauloises out of 5
  4. Furlough film club returns "Eurovision song contest, the story of fire sage" First up, I actually really like eurovision. It's big stupid cheesy fun and it's as out and proud as it's possible to be. I don't identify with that world, but I do identify with bunch of people who are having a bloody good time and don't care what you may think about it all. So, Will Farrell turns up and thinks he can take the piss out of it all and singularly fails to spot that eurovision isn't taking itself seriously in the slightest to begin with. Every moment Farrell is in the scene it's shit. His character is apparently obsessed with eurovision and wants to win the contest to put his Icelandic Town on the map for reasons. Bizarrely he gets there with sidekick Rachel McAdams (who is ace), is rubbish and is told constantly why he is rubbish. The highlight is a big party with past winners of eurovision in a big sing along. Suddenly Conchita Wurst, and Netta Barzilai turn up to demonstrate just what's so amazing about eurovision and how it doesn't need a 50 something American playing his usual 50 something idiot man child to take the piss. Every scene without Will Farrell is great, he shits it up. But every scene with European actors in, who know what eurovision is, is great. But really, Ireland should have won with "my lovely horse" Iceland nill points out of 5 But the popular vote gives Iceland duex points
  5. Captain Fantastic. Right on, tree hugging hippy prick and family visit "normal" society to bury mum. Hilarity ensues as eco family interact with American stereotypes. I hated, absolutely hated, every single person in this film. But, I was utterly engaged with the story and characters. The story smacks you over the head with the big cricket bat of obviousness in case you're too stupid to understand the message. Was he right? Was she led astray by his devotion? Is it child abuse to teach kids to kill their food? Blah blah blah. 2 William Golding clichés out of 5
  6. The Man who killed Don Quixote Off the bat, i'm a massive Gilliam fan. I love his inventiveness and the fact his films often look like they were cobbled together in the editing room. This doesn't disappoint; Weird camera angles, paper thin plot, tight shaky handheld camera shots, dangerous Russian gangsters, random weirdness, dream sequence and suddenly it's a film about something else. It's majestic, visually stunning and clatters along from scene to scene for no apparent reason. Adam driver is fast becoming my new favourite actor, Pryce is perfect as the crazy old guy lost in his memories and then Stellan Skarsgard arrives. Utterly brilliant. 4.5 windmills out of 5
  7. Furlough film club night The vast of night. On amazon prime Low fi indie small town America weird lights in the sky flick. Superb camera work tracks the players around nowhere ville America as dinky little radio host stumbles on the bigger picture. This is budget filming in a grand scale. Lots of "show don't tell" it draws you in with tight tracking shots across the town as information is imparted when the director is ready to tell you. The ending doesn't quite land the mother ship, but you should be invested enough by that point to enjoy the reveal. You've seen it before but you'll love it anyway. 3.5 switch board connections out of 5
  8. Furlough film club. King Arthur legend of the sword Cor blimey apples and pears my old man's a dustman if it ain't King Arthur and his motley band of cockney rogues blagging their way through a heist movie that not so much ignores the legend but rides rough shod over it a few time to be sure. Arthur and the lads must stop evil brother of the old king, jude law hamming it up all the way, from building a tower for some reason. There's a sword, a French women who can control the beasts, lots of nazi knights and a shaolin monk. It makes pretty much no sense from start to finish. David Beckham turns up at one point to give the furniture a run for its acting chops whilst Jude demonstrates he's a mage by lighting a candle after concentrating at it for 10 minutes. Hilariously stupid from the off. Perfect mindless entertainment. 3 cockney rebel scum out of 5
  9. I think he was one of the few comic from that generation that survived the rise Alternative comedy in the 80's. And people like Tim Vine owe him a huge debt.
  10. The wife has decided to watch all of the star wars films in number order (which is just so wrong ) I refused to watch the prequels, and when i explained about the walking and talking and walking and talking and sitting and talking she told me to piss off. Anyway, I didn't have the heart to watch Solo, so picked it up at Rogue One Still head and shoulders the best of the new films. It shits all over the rise of starwalker and the last jedi slowly being chased through space for reasons. I love the fact there are no Jedi, no starwalkers, the quips come from a bloody big robot. It feels like it's set in a police state and the director understood that a big old set is better than a CGI hanger with nothing in it. Its gritty, real, emotional and has the death star moon rise which is an amazing shot. Ok sure there are too many characters, the quasi Jedi and his minder are there just for a blind man to shoot a moving target and make mystical statements. And the CGI Leia is a bit Meh. But i don't mind that, it's done enough good stuff by that point, that its ok. The thing is, it doesn't feel like its desperately trying to make me like it, it's not overly fan servicey or full of shit they can turn into merchandise. It's what the sequel trilogy should have been like. A solid Red 5 out of 5
  11. The Third man (1949) A man travels to post war Vienna to meet up with a old friend, who turns out to be dead. What follows, as the man tries to work out what happened, is the blueprint of film noir to this day. Weird camera angles, the dark back streets of bombed out Vienna, creepy European accents and stiff upper lipped Brits trying to fix europe. Topped off with an ice cold Femme Fatale on the edge of a breakdown. Orson Wells is superb as the shady american making a dishonest buck. I absolutely adored this, a film i'd never watched from start to finish. My 15 year old boy who is going to film studies in september who has been brought up on a diet of Marvel and Star wars ... thought it was dull, weird and where had the colour gone. I despair for today's youth!! 5 american cigarettes of out 5
  12. Furlough film club update. Easter kind of got in the way, so only a couple of films watched. Rear Window (1954) Hitchcock at his height in Hollywood. We spy on voyeur James Stewart as he spies on the local neighbourhood from his rear window. Grace Kelly is utterly captivating, dismissing his suspicions at first then helping to solve the mystery. Tight, claustrophobic and tense. You're never quite sure who is watching who! Superb 5 flash bulbs out of 5 Withnail and I Out of work actors escape London for a weekend in the country to recharge and try to avoid being molested by Uncle Monty. Is it okay to use homesexuality for comic effect if it's based on real life events ? Questionable politics today aside, this still has some of the most quotable lines ever committed to celluloid. Who hasn;t walked into a t least one tea shop and demanded "the finest wines known to humanity"? I first watched this at university back in the day when student movies and drinking to excess was the order of the day. There's a drinking game you can play with this film, have a shot everytime Withnail has a drink. You'll be paralytic inside an hour. 4 gins and pint of cider with ice in out of 5. The great Gatsby Because it was late and as it turned out Sunday night quite by accident, we put this on fully intending to watch the first 20 minutes then go to bed. 2 hours 20 minutes later we watched the credits roll. Never having read the book, I didn't know the premise, but was fully engaged within the first 10 minutes, as the narrator unfolds the story of Gatsby and who the man really is. The last third of the film needs a lot of trimming, the trip into New York to set up the final comedown seemed to go on forever. But, overall I think it's another top draw Baz Luhrmann film. And if you want a song and dance number with hundreds of extras up a big staircase, Luhrmann is the director for you. Bright, super saturated, abstract, intimate and epic all at the same time. 4.5 wives out of 5.
  13. Furlough film club Last night, Mad Max - fury road Weirdly, not as good as I remember it. Its just a bit to bright and shiny I think. And knowing how it ends there was no real tension this time I thought it was amazing first time I saw it, this time... Meh. 3 wrecks out of 5 Tonight, The Hurt Locker. This however was as good as I remember. Gritty, visceral, tense and still shocking. The scene in the car after the suicide vest, just brilliant. War without the "hoo rar American fuck yeah" 4 IEDs out of fi... Wait there's another wire!!!
  14. My son is starting film studies at 6th form in September so we're doing the "furlough film club" with my collection of films I bought because they won loads of awards. First up. There will be blood. I'm not sure I understand why this got so much praise. It looks amazing, sure. But there are so many plot point that don't make sense that I'm just left puzzled by it at the end. For instance, are there two sons of the farmer? Does the preacher have a dual personality if not where does Paul go and why did he talk about his church at the meeting? And then the end sort of arrives and there no explanation about the drinking and the sudden desire to tell the truth to the son. After all he's been through. So, looks amazing, Daniel Day Lewes utterly mesmerising, but ultimately unsatisfying. 3 working Wells out of 5. Next up no country for old men. I absolutely loved this. Big skies America, moody shots of desolate County. The protagonist are all believable and Bardem is outstanding as the pshyco killer. Everyone one is at the top of their acting game. You believe everyone's motives and reactions. The only odd thing is the setting, Brolin seems too young to have done two tours of 'Nam, in what feels like a mid 80s setting. But other than that superb. 5 dead bodies out of 5. Tonight, Mad Max : Fury road
  15. A couple more ink and watercolour works for you. I might well do more with both.
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