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New Borat - 2/5. Got a few laughs but the thing I think is the major draw for a lot of people is that he is mocking real people but with this it's clear that 80% of the "situations" were just real actors. So that kinda let me down. 

 

Unhinged - 3/5. Old fashioned nut job on a killing spree kinda feel that you don't see big stars making much. Nothing special though. 

Very slow start and things did get interesting with a few great scenes. 

I'm utterly convinced Russell Crowe took the role because he spends nearly all the film in a car, because my god he is in bad shape. 

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Slaxx (2020)

The trailer for this makes it look like a screwball horror comedy about killer jeans, and it does start off that way with the story set in an "ethical" fashion chain store complete with try-hard manager and harassed staff preparing for the arrival of these new jeans. However, it takes a shift towards the serious, the comedy giving way to something more political and emotional. There's a strong message about corporate hypocrisy in the clothing industry which whilst important felt like it didn't quite land on all fours. I'm assuming this sudden tonal shift was about drawing people in and then with the emotional  punch. Gore was good, comedy was so-so. Didn't quite work for me but it wasn't bad at all. Avoid the trailer.

 

3/5

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2 hours ago, Mike S said:

Relic (2020)

Interesting Australian horror (not that it is especially Australian, bar the accents and a shot of the Melbourne skyline) about a daughter (Kay) and grand-daughter (Sam) who are caring for their mother/gran, Edna, who is living alone and increasingly suffering from Alzheimers. The film is a moving exploration of the loss and grief  that Kay and Sam feel as they see Edna's condition deteriorate. There is a twist in the tale, of course, as it soon becomes clear that there is an unwelcome presence in the house that seems to be haunting Edna and driving some of her behaviours although the film does tread a fine line between allegory and straight supernatural/psychological as it is left open if the 'haunting' is a manifestation of Edna's deteriorating mind or an actual presence.

 

I'll not go into the plot any further for fear of spoiling but this is a decent little film and not bad at all for a directorial debut. There are a few too many slow creeping shots accompanied by creaking house noises for my liking really but it does mostly succeed in creating an atmosphere in which the viewer comes to fear the house as much as Edna and, later, her daughters, do. The ending is great...

 

Pretty low quality stream as part of this years Frightfest so it's one I'll be seeking out for a rewatch when a better quality release is available.

 

3.5/5

 

 

I was watching this but my stream was playing up. It didn't grab me at all, although that was probably because I'd watched four films that day and was waning (although I did watch something else a bit later). Should give it a proper watch as it sounds like it rewards the patient viewer.

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1 minute ago, Vimster said:

I was watching this but my stream was playing up. It didn't grab me at all, although that was probably because I'd watched four films that day and was waning (although I did watch something else a bit later). Should give it a proper watch as it sounds like it rewards the patient viewer.

 

It is quite slow with a lot of those slow creeping shots that tend to annoy me more these days but it's a very decent movie with fine turns form the three leads and a story that I think will reward a second viewing. The Alzheimers/haunting combo is certainly novel...

 

I find the streaming through Frightfest's VOD partner to be mediocre at best but at last they have an app that let's me play it on the TV so that's something. Unlike the BFI whose streaming quality was fine but, as we were unable to watch on a TV, the whole experience was distinctly second rate which means that Possessor is another I'll be buying when it gets a proper release. That said I would anyway as it was an incredible film 

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Forbidden Games: The Justin Fashanu Story

 

This was good but very frustrating. The central story of a footballer coming out and the attitudes of the times plus the psychological fallout from it all is compelling, but a couple of key elements were touched on but not fully explored.

 

Spoiler

First: It is revealed later on that Justin had given shirts to football fans with the suggestion that he then went on to groom them and have sex with them. The word 'boys' is used but then this thread is dropped. How old were these 'boys'? We never find out. Did he groom underage boys or, as the rest of the documentary outlines, merely form relationships with men? The accusation of molestation is brought up with another interviewee but the 'victim's' testimony appears highly dubious. In any event it is frustrating that this is treated to about 2 minutes screen time. Perhaps we will never know the truth but any half decent documentary maker would have researched this. It completely changes our view of what is otherwise an intelligent, mercurial talent who suffered great prejudice.

 

Second: his relationship to his brother features but is underexplored. I actually got more insight from seeing the SAS guy interview him on Who Dares Wins. This was the juice, but we get mostly pith.

 

Fantastic stuff about Julie Goodyear though. I will never have any respect for Bet Lynch ever again.

It is on Netflix and only 1 hrs 20 mins long, but could have been easily extended with better insight and interviews. 

 

3/5

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Lucky (2020)

Tricky to review this one, it's essentially an interesting take on the home invasion genre. It starts off straight enough, with May, a self-help author being attacked by a strange man who breaks into her house. But despite her best efforts he keeps coming back. Yet the other people in May's life seem strangely blasé about it all.  Soon the allegorical side of it becomes more overt. At times surreal, but ultimately thought-provoking. I'm still mulling over the issues now. Will definitely watch again.

 

3/5

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3 hours ago, Vimster said:

I was watching this but my stream was playing up. It didn't grab me at all, although that was probably because I'd watched four films that day and was waning (although I did watch something else a bit later). Should give it a proper watch as it sounds like it rewards the patient viewer.


It’s definitely worth revisiting. The last 20 minutes are particularly good.

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4 hours ago, Ry said:

New Borat - 2/5. Got a few laughs but the thing I think is the major draw for a lot of people is that he is mocking real people but with this it's clear that 80% of the "situations" were just real actors. So that kinda let me down. 

 

Have people read about actors being used or like most just thinking it? The film is confusing with it. 

 

Quote

Unhinged - 3/5. I'm utterly convinced Russell Crowe took the role because he spends nearly all the film in a car, because my god he is in bad shape. 

 

:lol: he said he turned it down at first but then he wondered why he was so repulsed by it and realised that people like that really exist. I knew he's big now but he's bigger than I expected..I wondered whether he put on weight for the part.

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The Nights Before Christmas (2020)

This was a sequel to a film I'd not seen, so can't vouch for that, and sadly it felt as though I really needed to have seen the first, oh well. This was pretty trashy, with two escaped psychos getting revenge via their Santa naughty-and-nice list. It had some gleefully fun gore but the energy was sapped by tedious police procedural segments and a huge exposition dump a ways in. Pretty dreadful end to October FrightFest 2020, I'm sad to say.

 

1/5

 

Anyway that's October FrightFest over. It was alright, not as many corkers at the last one but enough to justify paying for a pass.

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The Story of the Weeping Camel - 5/5

 

Astonishing doc from 2003, a German film crew embed themselves with a family of Mongolian shepherds in the wind-ravaged Gobi Desert to film their lives, and come out with something pure and magical. Few words are spoken, but everything is said.

 

According to the back of the box the Daily Mail gave this 5/5 also, calling it ‘one of the most enchanting and thought-provoking documentaries of all time’ - further illustrating there can be common ground for any of us.

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United Skates - 4/5

 

This is on BBC iplayer at the moment, a glorious documentary about roller skating in America, and the cultural significance for communities of ‘Adult Nights’, which is what night sessions at rinks aimed at Black people became known as.

 

Stunning footage of incredible skating, decent talking heads including Salt-n-Pepa and Vin Rock, I’m only docking a point as it ends too soon to see how things might pan out.
 

I’ll stick the trailer in, because if you like any of this then it’s for you:

 

 

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Honest Thief

 

More like stupid thief. Indeed, all the characters seem to have the IQ of a spoon. It's the only way to make the premise work or make any of it credible within the universe created. The FBI agents, in particular, look and act like they were recruited straight out of wood shop and given no training on the job apart from how to iron a shirt. The only character that acts in a believable way is the dog. Despite all this there's some fizzbang and it is thankfully all over in 1 hour 30 minutes.

 

1.5/5

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The Godfather Part 2

 

Not quite as good as the first. TBH it really misses Brando and the stuff in the past doesn’t really add much. Still, the rest is brilliant even if this entry in the trilogy is the one that made the least impression on me. 
 

Pacino puts in a staggering performance which might just be his best. 
 

5/5

 

Prince of Darkness 

 

I honestly think Carpenters movies get better with age. Even Village of the Damned doesn’t seem quite the disaster it did on release. This fells unique and is extremely well crafted.  It’s funny and sinister and uses it’s small budget to great effect. 
 

4.5/5.

 

Halloween 

 

Nothing original to say about this

 

5/5.

 

Halloween 2

 

Never seen this before. It’s not bad at all. I had no idea it picked up minutes after the first film ended. The gore is upped which makes it feel a different beast to the original. 
 

3/5

 

The Ring

 

Despite a valiant effort this doesn’t quite work. Watts is just slightly wrong for the role. Verbinksi does well but the pacing is off.

 

3/5

 

The Ring 2

 

Again, this almost works. It looks great and the supporting cast all do well. But it’s just not that interesting.

 

2/5

 

Rings

 

Id seen this before but it left so little an impression on me I had totally forgotten. It starts really well, but just runs out of steam about half way in.

 

2/5

 

 

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2 hours ago, sandman said:

Halloween 

 

Nothing original to say about this

 

5/5.

 

Halloween 2

 

Never seen this before. It’s not bad at all. I had no idea it picked up minutes after the first film ended. The gore is upped which makes it feel a different beast to the original. 
 

3/5

 

I do hope that you have the amazing Halloween 3 lined up for a watch next...

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The Peanut Butter Falcon - 4/5

 

Lovely little movie on Netflix.  I’ve never seen a  film with a lead actor with Down’s Syndrome and he’s great. Shia Leboeuf is also very good in this. The relationship never feels patronising. Suits his manic style. Also rare to see the shit bits of the US. Or rather the poorer, redneck parts. Highly recommended. 

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This is easily my favourite thread on the forum I always end up adding lots to my watchlist to enjoy.

Some recent films I’ve enjoyed.

 

Enola Holmes 4/5

Netflix

Some of the fight scenes were a bit excessive but otherwise a good film to enjoy with the family. My daughters loved it.

 

Article 15 4/5

Netflix

A young officer is thrown into rural india and his first case is dealing with two missing girls. Great film that shows the caste culture in India.

 

Laal Kaptaan 4/5

Amazon Prime

A sadhu goes out looking for revenge, some great location shots made it feel like a western. I have a soft spot for Westerns and Sci-Fi films so they usually always get rated slightly higher.
 

The Gentlemen 4/5

Amazon Prime

Guy Ritchie is back making another enjoyable British gangster film.

 

The Peanut Butter Falcon 4/5

Netflix

Go Falcon!

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On 16/10/2020 at 23:52, Mike S said:

Possessor (2020)

 

Brandon Cronenberg's second feature after 2012's Antiviral.

Sean Bean is in it.

 

4.5/5


Was this a cinema viewing?

What service did you watch this on? Can’t find it on any of the usual platforms.

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38 minutes ago, gospvg said:


Was this a cinema viewing?

What service did you watch this on? Can’t find it on any of the usual platforms.

It was streamed as part of the BFI London Film Festival a few weeks ago.

 

It is an exceptional film and one I'm very keen on watching again once it is gets a home release. I think a 4K UHD is planned (for the US at least)...

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27 minutes ago, Mike S said:

It was streamed as part of the BFI London Film Festival a few weeks ago.

 

It is an exceptional film and one I'm very keen on watching again once it is gets a home release. I think a 4K UHD is planned (for the US at least)...


Thanks one to add to the watchlist for now. Hopefully will get a home release soon.

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The Personal History of David Copperfield 2/5.

 

I really wanted to like this, I love whimsical and quirky films, but it just missed the mark. The dialogue was trying so hard to be offbeat that it felt forced. I've never got Armando Iannucci's stuff though, maybe it's just above my level of intellect.

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32 minutes ago, Thwomp said:

The Personal History of David Copperfield 2/5.

 

I really wanted to like this, I love whimsical and quirky films, but it just missed the mark. The dialogue was trying so hard to be offbeat that it felt forced. I've never got Armando Iannucci's stuff though, maybe it's just above my level of intellect.

I got to thirty minutes then fell asleep. I feel like trying it again though as it has had such praise on here.

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The Grudge (2020)

 

It dropped onto Sky Movies this week in prep for Halloween. I'd heard bad things but I thought I'd give it shot.

 

I was quite looking forward to seeing it tread the familiar line of the original, perhaps with some new takes but it veered so far off course it felt like it landed in a different genre.

 

Pointless gore, loud jump scares that weren't all that scary, a wafer thin story and people on screen you just never get to know, because it feels the need to tread (4) separate timelines at the same time across a 1.5 hour run time.

 

I should have re-watched the 2004 version, or better yet Ju-on.

 

1/5

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Parasite

 

I was mega excited when I saw it was on Prime video because so many people have raved about it....

 

I'm really sorry rllmuk hive mind, but I really didn't think it was that good.  It's good, but I think the hype worked against it for me - plenty of brilliant performances, and it's certainly a cool scenario but certainly not anything spectacular IMO.  Sorry all.

 

3.5/5

 

Big Daddy

 

The kids chose this one - I always feel tired after watching an Adam Sandler film.  This was no exception.  S'alright, nothing to really recommend though.

 

2.5/5

 

Borat Subsequent Moviefilm etc etc

 

So childish, so puerile - and in places so incredibly funny.  All the attention has turned to the section with Guiliani (which is just fucking creepy) but there are some absolutely golden moments that really tickled me.  The fertility dance in particular slayed me.

 

4/5

 

Cargo

 

I wasn't expecting much from this but Martin Freeman is excellent in a zombie flick that does far more than any of the last few seasons of The Walking Dead ever did - it remains tense and unflinching throughout.  

 

4/5

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The Secret Garden (2020, picked up by Sky for distribution & premiering on Sky Cinema)

 

Based on the classic children's novel, spoilt rich girl Mary is sent home from India after the sudden death of her parents to live with her uncle in his crumbling mansion. Roaming the grounds she finds her way into a secret garden and befriends the young gardener Dicken. Can she help her crippled cousin Colin get better?

 

This looks sumptuous, with some amazing CGI shots of the garden transforming. Colin Firth and Julie Walters are of course brilliant in their roles.

But there was just something unlikeable about the lead child Mary - I know that's partly how she's written, but by glossing over certain plot points (how her parents actually died & why she is so spoilt) it felt rather superficial.

 

3/5

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Calm with Horses - watched this on Netflix absolutely loved it. Wanted a smidge more from the ending. Though I see why it had the ending it had. 4.5/5 

 

Probably one of the best films I've seen this year. 

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Cube

 

I think this movie gets a lot of kudos because of its low budget, cult status but I found it a bit on the hammy side with a weak ending. On the positive side the premise is clever and there's some decent shlock horror moments. I enjoyed it while it lasted but I'll have forgotten about it in a week.

 

3/5

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Scream - Haven't watched this for years, but figured it was time for a Halloween rewatch. I always found this overrated and never got the praise heaped onto the film at the time. Unfortunatly time hasn't been kind to it either, and for me there is a number of problems which make this not very enjoyable at all. Most of the performances are awful, it's not near as clever as it wants to be and Ghostface is the most comicly inept horror character ever, diving around the screen and inexplicably flying through the air for no good reason. 2/5

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