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What Happened to Monday (2017)
Entertaining but preposterous
First of all, let's start with the preposterous. Seven girls, all named after the days of the week, hiding from a large corporation that is doing away with children to save the planet, by limiting the numbers of children born to one family to one and removing further siblings. That in itself is lunacy. Imagine the numbers of agents, the logistics of doing that in just one city. Add to that the storage facilities of said siblings alone should lead someone to question that. Yet, seemingly a small team of security and two henchmen can adequately manage this job quite easily. No-one asks why, if the idea is to keep kids in a 'humanely' indefinite sleep, they keep shooting the hell out of everyone and chasing them with guns. Yes folks it's another "the goverment might be lying to you "movies! I'll leave you to work out the rest of the highly ridiculous plot as you go. So, why a 6? Well, it's well acted and it keeps you engaged, but slightly disconnected, as you tend to focus on how they are doing the 'one actress seven parts' scenes. I think they spoiled this by making all seven girls so different, it would have worked far better if the differences were slight. We have one girl, as a stereotypical geek, but they need one for the computers; one rough-and-tumble lady to do the fighting etc etc. The scenes where there are multiple versions of the lead are pretty well done, but are a bit obvious at times and because no character can speak at the same time, it becomes a bit disjointed and not believable at times. For any actor pulling that off deserves great credit however. There is action aplenty, which helps to carry you through those obvious plot-holes and it's not unenjoyable. The pace picks up as the 30 year secret comes unstuck when one of the siblings goes missing and the remaining girls are now wanted and being hunted down. The ending isn't entirely unexpected - I'll say nothing about that except 'Running Man'. There are a few pet-hates of mine, namely bad extras in crowd scenes, which when not properly controlled by the director just take away believability and also bad CGI and props. In the crowd scene during Glen Close's speech all the photographers have identical rubby dummy cameras and the CGI contains repeated faces. That's nit-picking I know, but I noticed it. If you can suspend belief you will enjoy this, but it's no classic.
Like a broken pencil - pointless!
Another weird little girl movie...nothing groundbreaking. the movie centers around a small girl, who is seemingly all alone in a large house. It's hard to know what is going on at first, with the odd weird event. The movie is so darn boring it's a wonder I made it until the end. The inference is that something is in the house with her, but we never see what it is. Forty five minutes in and the paint I've been watching is dry, however nothing interesting has happened in the movie. Then the parents turn up, doubling the cast to four (including the turtle). Seemingly they had left her alone and disappeared following a world catastrophe, which is eluded to, briefly, on TV, as being some sort of virus, affecting children. It's been suggested that euthanasia is the only answer. It's revealed to Stephanie that the monster she is so scared of is her. Things go from bad to worse when the parents decide to take matters into their own hands and, well, I'll leave you to guess the rest. The acting is okay, but quite flat and the 'special effects' are pretty poor- most things are shown through a gap under the door, or behind a shower curtain which is usual fare for a low budget movie and is ineffective in providing the necessary horror in a 'horror' move. It's hard-going early on, I felt my eyes closing a few times. It was said in a review that: "Akiva Goldsman has crafted a horror thriller that's going to take audiences to unexpected places," well, if you are in the cinema, it may unexpectedly take you to McDonald's halfway through the movie, or to the cashier, to ask for your money back. The movie will certainly go where the producers of this movie least expected it to - in the bargain video section of your local supermarket.
Little substance, low on scare value - you could sleep through the first 42 mins
The first 42 minutes of this movie is utterly tedious. The storyline is weak, script and character development, is non-existent. We are introduced to a young girl, who decides that her mother wanting to move away to escape memories of her dead father is clearly a motive to want her dead - absurd! So off she goes to a book signing, by her favourite occultist author and this gives her the inspiration to call up an evil entity by performing a half-brained ritual, involving a ball of string and a rock. The fact that said spirit is called Pyewacket and this happens to have been one of the familiars of a 'witch' arrested by the Witchfinder general, Matthew Hopkins during the 1640s should indicate as loose a rip on reality as had Mr Hopkins, who slaughtered many people for believing in things like lucky charms, which they would sell for money. Thank the good Lord that he took him in 1647 and saved the lives of many more innocents. So where was I.... ah.. the ritual. The young lady almost cuts her wrist for no good apparent reason and the deed is done. Pyewacket is nothing more frightening than someone dressed in black, shown out of focus for about 15 seconds, a dirty hand and a disabled,or drunk 'thing' shown from distance for 5 seconds. Don't expect any good make-up or CGI - there is a few seconds of an embarrassing attempt at CGI, consisting of a black figure, which is badly done. Of course the girl decides she was a little rash in calling up this disabled shadow to slaughter her mother, in a roundabout way, but hey ho...! The cast numbers fewer than ten and so do most of their individual lines and of course...they are all Goths. The acting is absolutely fine, but the script and dialogue is so limited that it just doesn't hold your attention. I can only assume this will appeal to youngsters, with a lot of imagination - which you need in abundance with the lack of actual scary content. The ending is just as absurd and that's over in seconds. There is nothing to recommend about this movie. Watch it by all means, but you will be left with a feeling of loss at the life you can't get back. It's low budget, not scary (a prerequisite for a horror), boring, dull, uneventful and amateurish. If you make it past 42 minutes, well done!
The Titan (2018)
I count myself as being imaginative... but boy, does this stretch the boundaries! I like Sam Worthington, but this won't be high on his list of accomplishments when he retires. The plot is simply bonkers, but doesn't take the road to the Sanitarium until about three-quarters in. If you can gloss over the madness and lack of any plausibility, you might stay with it until the end. Okay... the story-line (put you anti-bonkers glasses on); The U.S Government decides that, as the world is dying, thanks to the pesky human race, they need to move to Titan, one of Saturn's moons (naturally), but the environment on the planet is too hostile for humans - there being no water or oxygen. The natural progression to, what should be a terminal end to that discussion, is to take a group of soldiers and create super-humans, by injecting them with the DNA of other species. This would enable man to migrate en mass. At this point, I felt a little embarrassed, I didn't see this blindingly obvious solution! There's only one (there are really a lot more) reason that this is barking mad: Only 1 in 5 appear to actually survive this process. The whole concept and story-line seems to have been conceived after reading Wikipedia, whilst taking illegal substances! If they'd left the 'stupidity' dial on mark one, they might have gotten away with the madness - but, no... they turned it up to max power! Somehow the remaining subjects become something that no amount of DNA tinkering could produce and it's at that point that the suspension of belief is no longer possible. Hidden away somewhere among the absurdity, is a love story, or, at least a, 'love conquers all', overly sentimental message. The acting is very good, so everyone take a bow for that, but when a story-line is so barmy that it gives you a 'frown' headache, it can't be good. The irony is that this is another attempt by a U.S. movie to tell us that we are killing our planet, whilst America is a major contributor to it. Surely, rather than create super-humans to live in a hostile new world, cutting carbon emissions might be easier?? In short: everything is good, apart from the story-line, which has more holes than a sieve and is completely bonkers!
Demon House (2018)
Nothing makes demons appear like the smell of money!
Get a bunch of backward, poor, god-fearing black folks, offer them a buck and hey presto. you have demons! Get some white dude, to dress in black, , act like David Blaine, speak in a monotone voice and wear sunglasses in a cellar and you have the makings of a documovie. 30 minutes in, I'm thinking "what a pile of horse do-do!" Captain Austin....... hmmm? what a moron he is.... forgot his lines, claiming he'd been unconscious for a month...after falling on ice - must be those pesky demons again! The smell of money draws people to this moviemaker like flies round crap - like Mika - who, coincidentally turns up while the moviemaker is there, claims those evil demons kicked her in the basement and gets the scent of money regularly from then on. Never has a movie been made based on so little evidence! What we have are a load of 'chancers', jumping on the bandwagon - and the bandwagon is pretty darn full of everything but actual demons! Wow! people are shot and murdered in one of the poorest, most violent places in American - massive shock. Secret informants, coincidences, people just 'dropping by' to give evidence.... this movie is built on this absolute drivel! First we are told that our moviemaker- a TV spook hunter, buys this house, 'famous' for 'paramormal activity', then we have, the lengthy convincer - that he suspects it's all a hoax. Until he starts his own investigation. What utter and complete crap! We have a famous guy come in and measure electrical interference from our moviemaker, who happens to have both hands in his pockets when his device spikes...........pointed at his pocketed hands - and the science guy doesn't put two and two together? in an earlier shot you can clearly see his pocket contains something - pull the other one you muppets! Ablack anomally passes a doorway right where a cameraman is... and guess what? We have a Nasa expert brought in to tell usit's not the cameraman's hand - who said it was?? You couldn't make it up - well.... yes you could. When the movie is obviously not having the desired effect, the crew start to be affected (quelle suprise). One vomits blood and screams the movie maker's name in a strange voice - but our idiot filmakers don't capture that - merely some contrived ham-acting, which IS captured. The whole thing is contrived, but not even well. Oh! we have the goatman......of course we do...... because that's the thing that ties this ridiculous story together. I've seen fake stuff before way better done than this. Lots of medical claims, police, cps but no evidence whatsoever. Even claims of organs shutting down and yet the guy looks perfectly fine. Then we have the climax: "I know this sounds stupid, but the investigator inside me wants to experience it." Well, no, it sounds/smells like dollars. Our money, sorry, movie maker, is locked inside the demon house. We are shown the boarded up windows and doors as convincers. Here we go.. There are reputed to be a hundred demons in this house and yet........... nothing. Oh, undocumented double vision. Unproven claims about crew members and illnesses and accidents are all blamed on the house. It's all very pathetic. Basically we have rumours about a haunted house, the sniff of a movie and cash, which our movie maker sees a mile off. Add to that poor, god-fearing, uneducated folks, lead them along by dropping details in, especially to the kids, then, when the story is petering out a little, get the crew involved, whether in collusion, or fame whoring, make some unsubstantiated claims and then spend a night in the house, make more unsubstantiated medical claims and then destroy the house, keeping a little dirt and some stairs for a sequel, add a few million gullible idiots and hey presto - no demons, but pots of cash! That's the most unbelievable thing about this movie. At no stage are any provable documents provided to substantiate any claims, be it medical, criminal, ecumenical or otherwise. In short, it is the biggest and poorest sham ever devised.
Kickboxer: Retaliation (2018)
ludicrous script and ham acting
I guess, nobody should expect much of movies like this, or be surprised when they don't deliver. This latest effort in the Kickboxer franchise is nothing new. Same old story-line. The movie has a great opening few minutes, very well shot action scenes, but then it descends into the usual farcical weaknesses - mainly the poor acting, direction, script and plain barmy plot. The fight sequences are quite well shot, but more attention is given to them than the actual acting and this leaves you not believing in it. Christopher Lambert looks like burst settee for much of the movie; our hero has no acting ability and Van Damme looks absolutely ludicrous. Lots of sequences and characters were plainly stolen from other movies; we have the mirror smashing scene from Enter the Dragon and Van Damme plays his role as mr miyagi, from Karate Kid. No matter that he is totally blind, he makes his way around the world, appearing to be able to see perfectly well, without eyes. So, the plot.... Well, our fighter is asked to fight a 6ft 10 inch 400lb fighter (they've added an inch to his real size for effect), when he refuses, they kidnap his girlfriend and put him in jail until he accepts. There, he is befriended by a ludicrously wacky set of prisoners, including Mike Tyson and Mr Van Damme, who for some reason sucks on a smokeless pipe for the whole movie. I suppose the hat and sunglasses mask how bad he is looking of late, but the pipe is a mystery? I don't need to spoil the ending, as I think you will have worked that one out already. There are lots of improbable characters, overplayed and badly acted - there isn't one who I can say comes out of the movie with any credibility on that score. Even Mr. Lambert doesn't convince as the baddy. This movie will appeal to anyone who likes mindless violence and can ignore the rest of the important stuff.... such as acting. It will also be attractive to the criminally insane and anyone with an IQ below 40. It's watchable, but you will find yourself open-mouthed at the sheer stupidity of it all sometimes. It does make you chuckle quite a lot. The huge fighter that our hero is to fight, is well-known to strongest man fans, but despite his impressive stature, occasionally he looks frighteningly like Ricky Gervais. It's really all stitched together with shamelessly stolen scenes and ideas from a lot of other movies over the years; ones far better done than this! I gave it a four, because I watched it all, but I was close to turning it off after about 15 minutes, because the acting was so appalling.
Pointless in the extreme
Every now and again, a movie comes along, which contrives to be so complex, that it's lauded as brilliant, or ground-breaking. It's one of those 'Google' the ending movies. When I watch a movie, I want the ending served up to me, I do not want to be wondering what I just watched - and more importantly, why I just wasted almost 2 hours of my life on it. Leaving that aside for a moment, I'll try to make sense of it. A woman's husband disappears and then reappears, coughing up blood, he is then quarantined. He's apparently been inside a large spreading dome like structure, called 'the shimmer'. To make sense of it, she and a select band of women decide to enter this alien-like world, where they find strange, cross-species creatures, living in a surreal forest. The band are attempting to find a lighthouse, where the shimmer originated. There, it is discovered that the alien can clone and devour human form. That's about the size of it, without giving anything away. Interesting concept you might think? The concept is the only interesting about this movie. It crawls along at a snail's pace - so slow in-fact, that you drift off into lalaland! Eventually, you lose interest in this bore-fest and by the end, you no longer care what is happening. Obviously we will condescendingly have the movie's meaning explained to us and even if it does have any meaningful content, or reason - it's still utterly soulless and turgid. It's pseudo intellectual clap-trap!
Honey I shrunk the kids was done better almost 30 years ago!
I was quite hopeful of this being a good movie. I thought: "Oh! at last an original idea! then remembered - it wasn't. This movie plods along for far too long and in the end fizzles out into something forgetable - so much so, that when I came to do the review, I couldn't remember the name of it! Matt Damon is his usual inanimate self. The premise is that, to save the world from overpopulation, people are able to volunteer to be irreversibly miniaturised and live in small-people communities. Damon, along with his wife, undergo the procedure, only to find, for him at least, it hasn't gone exactly to plan. From this point on. no matter how imaginative you are, nothing memorable happens. Visually It just doesn't work, raindrops are the same size, when in reality they would kill our little friends; on a trip to Norway, the sea and mountains are at the same scale that they would be in normality. Trees, despite not being miniaturised are the same size. It just doesn't work on any level. The love story isn't believable, because there is no chemistry between the actors whatsoever. The movie is meant to convey a message about man's ruination of the earth, but, it's just been done a million times and so much better. It is the movie equivalent of flat-lining. Over two hours of absolute boredom and mundanity. In the end I just had the feeling that if the world was rescued from it's fate and it looked like this, and the people in it were like the people in the movie, I would pray for death! We are led to believe that insects are the danger to these little people, but rain and even a light breeze, would wipe them all out. Even if I added spoilers, you wouldn't be anymore enthused by this tripe.
A rehashed idea, done a thousand times and 999 times better!
A weak storyline, poor script, slow pace and ham acting, make for a less than enjoyable ride. A rehashed idea, done a thousand times and 999 times better! Our lead, Karl Urban, makes Matt Damon seem to have limitless emotional depth. He permanently looks like he is suffering from hard stools - maintaining the same expression throughout. The wardrobe department wasn't too taxed, given he wore the same outfit the whole movie, but for a t-shirt change. Continuity need sacking; cops break our hero's tail light and 20 seconds later it is fully functioning and undamaged again! Make-up is a bit odd, a punch in the nose illicits much blood after a thousandth of a second and one character shot in the final scene bleeds out immediately from the head and body, despite being shot only once. One character dies from a non-lethal wound! The storyline is simple enough. Man accused of something he didn't do goes out to prove otherwise and uncover a thinly-veiled conspiracy. I lost interest so many times, due to the slow pacing and poor script. The movie is lacking in drama and you become disengaged from the plot really easily. In short, it's not good.
79 minutes too long
A dreadful, pointless movie. Now I know I have to write some more text just to have this post allowed..... but it's not easy to find anything redeemable about this shambolic exercise in 'how not to direct or act. Normally, it's usual for there to be a weak link in the cast, as far as acting goes - despite the miniscule cast (below ten), In this instance, they are all equally as bad. The purpose of 'acting' is, I believe, to make the watcher believe that every word you say is real and spontaneous - this bunch of amateurs fail dismally in that regard. Every word spoken sounds like it is being read from a cue-card, for the first time. there is no emotion, no pauses, no mixed-dialogue, just robotic reading from a script. Is that the actors fault? or the director's? Either way, I would perhaps have expected this from a young girl, but the whole cast are equally as wooden. An incredibly limited script and story-line is bad enough! So the gripes about the acting and script aside...here is the premise of the movie. A young girl is imprisoned in a room in a straitjacket, although we are not initially party as to why. She is apparently super-intelligent, and knows it. It transpires that she has supernatural powers,although, incredibly, she cannot escape the bonds that keep her prisoner in the room. I only stayed with this movie, as I was hoping there would be some special effects...but....no. The cast have the chemistry of several strangers given the script two minutes beforehand; we never hear more than one person in dialogue at any given time and it's all completely emotionless. The majority of the movie takes place in said locked room and an adjoining viewing room - only once do we see the outside world. It involves a psychiatrist and a young girl in an apparent battle of intellect and the odd game of chess. I won't spoil the ending - the movie is quite capable of that on it's own. There isn't anything to recommend about this aberration, apart from staying well away from this movie. If you must waste 80 minutes of your life, go clip your toenails and then search for them, it will be so much more fulfilling.
If Only There Was a Minus Rating!
How in God's name this ever got a rating of seven, is beyond me! I just cannot explain in words just how utterly bad this movie is... It is ludicrous in the extreme. It really is hard to even describe what it is actually about... I still don't know! It is fine for the first hour-a little drawn out, but it holds the attention, then Bam! The film descends into utter stupidity. I kept thinking, Oh! I wonder if she's actually mental and imagining all this... but no! It's actually happening! We go from a word-blocked poet and his wife, the flawless Jennifer Lawrence, in their new home, through a seeming apocalypse, to a pile of ashes, in just two hours. I can only assume that whoever wrote this had a breakdown and finished it in a padded cell with crayons. What seems like an interesting story-line, which sees the poet taking in some strangers, who cause havoc, suddenly takes a surreal turn, which just becomes more and more ridiculous. I can say no more, without 'ruining' the ending - which isn't even worth spoiling. It's as bad a movie as I have ever seen. This is the movie equivalent of the Turner prize. Please don't waste your valuable time on this film - you have been warned!
This Is Your Death (2017)
Appalling, but not in a good way!
How this movie is currently getting a 6.0 rating I do not know. What a ridiculous premise, stupid script, ham acting... nothing redeems this shambles. As low as humans have sunk to win TV ratings, I cannot imagine this ever being possible. Besides the dreadful script and story-line, the movie is limited to about five actual speaking parts and the rest silent extras. Even the FBI men do not speak. The show's studio audience are made up of the worst over-acting non-speaking extras you will ever see in one place. Some of the direction is shocking - someone kills themselves and some guy in a white suit comes on with a mop and bucket - I mean come on?! Not one person is capable of shedding a tear. So the plot? I use that term loosely. Game show in which contestants kill themselves on live TV - that's it folks.... there is no more depth to it. The actual plot ending can be seen coming a mile off. The director seems only to concentrate on what is happening with the main actors and not the ludicrous extras and props. The only reason this is not a one star is that the main actors aren't that bad.... but the script sucks. I would rather kill myself than watch this pile of doo-doo again.
Shin Gojira (2016)
Substitute the letter 'N' in 'Shin Godzilla', with a 'T' and it's a more fitting title!
Oh dear! Whoever is scoring this movie above a one score, is clearly in need of hospitalization. Someone pointed out that not understanding the dialogue would somehow bias our opinions of this movie - that we didn't understand the concept. Sorry, but I may not speak Japanese, but I can tell a crap movie by it's content (or lack of) and dreadful Special effects. The plot is thus: Monster comes out of the sea and wrecks the joint - the end. The 'monster' resembles a Barbecued Squirrel, which doesn't blink, or react at all, much like the Plasticine model in the original. It does however shoot laser beams out of it's back. Most of the first 50 minutes is taken up by ever increasing amounts of people in blue jumpsuits, in ever more expansive rooms, sat around ever-expanding tables, talking and talking and talking and talking - before the toasted squirrel takes a single hit. Every single line is delivered forcefully and over dramatically, beginning with, or ending with the word 'Sir'. The costumes consist of Jumpsuits or black suits and the hair and make-up consists of whether the hair is parted on the left, or the right. What I find fascinating is the amount of paperwork these people are reading in every scene and what the hell is on all those computers??. I mean, what information do these pages contain? It's a monster attacking, a city, not Al Qaeda! You know things are becoming more serious when the outfits suddenly change colour! The cream suits are sent in to provide a solution to a foe who does not move, doesn't evade bullets, or bombs and is as elusive a foe as a brick. It cannot use it's arms and so belly flops on to buildings. What is strange is the odd usage of English, which breaks out for a few seconds, here and there?? It's very odd. If it were not for the stunning Satomi Ishihara, I would have turned off after a couple of minutes, it really is 'that' bad. The hype this movie has can only be coming from Asia, as we are accustomed to better CGI in the Western world these days. This is as bad a special effects attempt as I've seen since the 1980's. The solution to this boring and laughable saga suddenly arrives during an impromptu Origami session, where maps are used to fashion strange shapes, which suddenly lead to a 'Eureka' moment and a plan is hatched to dispatch the creature. On a plane, high above the city (despite Godzilla shooting down anything that flies), the matter of nukes is discussed, by an actor, playing a U.S government official, who wouldn't even secure a role in an insurance advertisement. He is a simply dreadful actor. We have the copied Japanese version of the rousing Independence Day speech, given to copious numbers of further jump-suited individuals - clearly, things are now at the white jumpsuit, def-com 1 stage. Shin Zilla is surely the most advanced creature man has ever seen and yet, does not have the ability to blink. Surely a strong fan would have caused the creature more harm than any missile. This is simply shocking in all departments and you have only yourself to blame if you waste 2 hours of your existence watching this dreadful movie! I'll never look at a spikey poo in the same way again!
Tries hard to lbe convincing, but fails
First off, I have to say that the acting was the best part of this movie. What lets it down is a really poor script and lack of budget. I'll come to that mess in a moment, but here's a brief synopsis. The planet is taken over by a virus, spread by blood contact and the idea is loosely based around the botfly parasite and the even looser Toxoplasmosis parasite, which is able to control it's hosts, which happen to be rats and mice. Wrongly stated in the script, the parasite makes the rats attack the cats, when in reality the rats are attracted by a pheromone in the cats urine and therefore become easy prey. The cats eat the rodent and the parasite has a new place to reproduce. So, as you can imagine, I don't really have to say a lot more about this area of the plot. The movie is confined to a small cast and a localised area and much of the impression that this is a wide-scale world virus is mainly due to TV audio reporting and a bit of cgi. So much more could have been done to make this a fairly decent movie - mainly a better budget - another 'Outbreak; it is not! The movie only ever escapes the confines of a small housing community once, until the final scene, which is, in itself, disappointing. If you want to convey a worldwide epidemic/or pandemic, then maybe some foreign footage would be in order. This merely looks like the virus attacking a U.S street, containing a few houses. Despite good acting it fails to be convincing. There are various plot-holes, none more stupid than the kids holding a party in an abandoned house, when the whole world is in crisis and people have been told to stay indoors. The ending is poor and abrupt and strikes you of when you write stories as a kid, at school and run out of ideas, or get bored and you end it rather abruptly with lines like: "and it was all a dream", or "the world was saved, the end.". Is it the worst movie in the world - Nope! Would I watch this again? Nope! Judge whether to watch this based around the time you have left to live and how much value you place on the content of your remaining years.
A Few Less Men (2017)
unoriginal and unfunny
This is 'Weekend at Bernies', with much less budget. I wanted to like this, but for the most part, it was just not funny. To sum up: four friends are at a wedding in Australia, when one is killed, they are told to return the body to England, in one piece, or they will be toast. Of course things don't go smoothly. There are many elements of this movie that appear in 'Death at a Funeral': corpses, drugs and lost bodies being but three. The script is no deeper than that! I think I laughed twice, the rest of the time I was cringing at the appalling script. I managed to watch the entire movie, although I was nearly tempted at the 36 minute mark to switch off. There is nothing original about the movie, it seems a blatant, low-budget attempt to copy the aforementioned movies. It falls short of both. It's not un-watchable, if you are easily pleased.
The Fate of the Furious (2017)
Suspend your disbelief and it's enjoyable
Believe it or not, I've never seen any of the other movies in the franchise. The concept and always struck me as being a lot of car-chases and cars crashing and it never appealed to me. Having seen this latest installment, my suspicions were entirely correct. It's action-packed, stunt ridden and fast-paced, but the script is limited. Nothing wrong with the acting, save Helen Mirren's appalling Cockney accent, but it was littered with cheesy moments. What I found odd was Jason Statham occasionally forgetting which accent he was doing; he's a one-trick pony and limited in acting range, to Cockney and American Cockney. I'd wager that his voice would never get above a whisper if you were to set him on fire. I realise this is a movie not to take too seriously, but some of the stunts and action sequences were about as far-fetched as it gets. Strip the movie of the stunts and you don't have a lot of substance. Here's an abridged version of events: Vin Deisel is forced to go rogue after a hacker holds his baby and it's mother hostage, said team-mates try to stop them before they create World War three. Along the way, two suits provide them with a neverending supply of high-end cars - because that's what the feds do (apparently). The Rock and his friends try to smash them to pieces. What's crazy about that concept? There are two computer systems, which enable both sides to break into and control everything on the planet, with little more than two seconds of tapping on the keyboard. Kurt Russell plays the fed in charge, he must be scraping the barrel these days, as must Charlize Theron, playing the hacker, Cipher. A watchable romp if you can switch off your disbelief for two hours. The Rock and Vin Deisel spend the whole movie trying to be more manly than the other, but the Rock has now more credibility and some range, whereas Vin Deisel makes Matt Damon look animated. A bowl of soup could out-act Vin Deisel. I don't have to give away the ending because it's ever so slightly obvious.
Beauty and the Beast (2017)
Just not perfect and too cheesy in parts
I wasn't sure how this movie was going to go at first. I thought it was a little cheesy in parts, which Disney usually tries to avoid. I believe the Character of Gaston was overplayed by Luke Evans to the point that I found him irritating (and not in the way he was supposed to). He was just too Westend-like and he was clichéd in his characterisation. He turned into Michael Ball every five minutes and over-enunciated his English. For a movie set in France, everyone was, well, not French. We had Cockneys, an American, and absolutely no French actors. I felt this took away the mystique. Having an English actor playing a French candlestick was a bad move, the accent was off a lot. Why producers think films like this can't be a hit without well known actors is beyond me. Emma Watson was natural and not cheesy. Ian McKellern spoke, as always and never tries anything more challenging. The songs were okay, but I've watched it five minutes ago and I can't remember a single one of them, but for the melody of the closing song. For a movie, essentially about Bestiality it makes a good yarn. I did enjoy it, but this could have been made extraordinary with a little better attention to detail, which is Disney's forte and casting. It will do better in the USA, because it will pander to their stereotyping - will we ever get a movie with an English person, who isn't a Cockney? or a non-existent posh stuffed shirt? I thought the CGI of the beast to be clunky and not natural at times, particularly when walking, I think that could have been so much better done. The facial features were also a bit too unrealistic. The story is a good one, the script very good and when Gaston wasn't on screen, it immersed you in it. Then the mystique disappeared as soon as he spoke, or even stood in his West End clichéd stance. He was a mistake in my view. Taking away that Stuffy, cheesy West End style would have served the movie better and although no one else really dropped to his standards, it was still a bit cheesy in parts. If you are going to have a foreign actor in a movie please God cast one from that country, or at least someone with a faultless accent. Emma Watson carried this movie completely, along with Kevin Kline and Emma Thompson, who is always brilliant. They had to get one American in there and he was very good. All in all, I'd watch it again, but will forever hate the badly miscast Gaston and I'd definitely recommend it. Was it worth the hype? just!
Hidden Figures (2016)
I knew very little about this movie before watching and it was a pleasant surprise to me, as the subject matter seemed a little boring. How wrong I was. I couldn't fault any part of the movie. It's only right that these women should gain their proper place in history and they be rightly recognised by everyone, not just their peers. The movie is not just dramatic, it's moving in parts too, and I have to say that more than once, I was ashamed to be white. The very idea of segregation was and is shameful and I felt deeply for them on more than one occasion. The story, without giving too much away, centers on three women, who happen to be black, at a period in history when the small-minded considered black people to be pariahs and inferior; this movie shows there is and was nothing inferior about these brilliant women. They push through the bigotry and make their way into the upper-echelons of NASA. Katherine Goble was nothing less than a genius and without her brilliant mind, man would probably never have made it to the moon when he did. Certainly John Glenn would never have left the launch-pad when he orbited the earth, without her correcting IBM computer coordinates. It's a wonderful movie and I'd recommend it to anyone. I've tried to find a negative and I just can't.
Dark and Depressive
This movie isn't for the faint-hearted - it's very dark and verges on the edge of being distasteful. There is no light and shade to it and that is why I only gave it a five. I think there could have been brighter moments in amongst the gloom. It's oppressive, depressing and on the edge the whole way through. Guy Pearce is excellent as the murderous preacher, but his character does go within a hair's breadth of being a little too perverse. The slightly odd way of showing events in different, later-merging segments, works quite well, but may annoy and confuse some viewers. It's hard to sum up, without giving away too much, but it centers around a young woman, pursued relentlessly by a uber-puritanical preacher, who takes religion to a whole new level. Some of the scenes may upset; there is violence aplenty: sexual abuse; paedophilia; incest; spousal-abuse; self-flagellation; rape, voyeurism and sadism and that can be a little wearing, as the oppressive feeling never really lets up. It's not clear at first, as to why the preacher has a bee in his bonnet with the young woman, but that becomes clearer as the movie progresses. The ending left me a little dissatisfied - it could have lifted the mood, but only deepened the depressive tone. It's not a 'feel good' movie, by any stretch of the imagination and when the titles started to roll, I found my self exhaling and saying wow! but not in a particularly positive way. I'd never watch the movie again, simply because it is so depressive. That said, it is powerful and a real assault on the senses, but it's not going to be for everyone.
Cheesy and clichéd
This movie is wayyy too long. I wanted to like it, but by the time the final 40 minutes came around, I found myself wishing he'd just take his damn foot off! First off, it's a bit of a daft story-line, the army just wouldn't abandon soldiers, sandstorms or not. Two days in one position and your leg would go numb. Hell... mine goes to sleep when I cross my legs for more than five minutes these days! I have a gripe about the casting of the black man, played by Clint Dyer (I know - who?). Why get an English actor, or for that matter an American to do the voice of an indigenous tribesman slash Nomad? Are there no actors who have a more suitable accent? It all adds to the realism. His accent was appalling and clichéd, almost comical. Well, a few things happen over the next two days (and boy does it seem every minute of 48 hours). It feels as though the movie has genuinely been that long by the end. By the time you get to the retrospective look at our hero's past, you genuinely want him to just get on with it, it just goes on and on and on. Then the painful drawn out end is just too much. I found myself just wanting the movie to stop before I broke something. I think I started to lose focus around 43 minutes in. It's always a bad sign when you are looking at how long is left and an even worse one when you can remember the exact time you looked afterwards. The whole movie was just over the top, like the music and swelling orchestral accompaniment, which shouts 'I want you to be moved' instead of the film and events actually moving you. The movie is easily summed up as: man steps on mine, man steps off mine - the end. There is no more substance to it unfortunately. A lot more interesting things could have happened. The acting is fine, but how hard is it to play such an unchallenging role? The end is a bit unsatisfactory as well, it can be seen coming a mile off, so that is a further letdown. I wouldn't view this a second time if I had free tickets. I have more things to do with my life, like chewing my own arm off, or sticking pins in my eyes - both of which would be more pleasurable.
Trespass Against Us (2016)
A celebration of idiocy
What the hell Michael Fassbender was doing within a million miles of this tripe is beyond me. It's what's wrong with society today, all wrapped up in one giant farce. The script drunkenly meanders through, what seems to be a glorification of sub-human and skewed morality. The father of a dysfunctional, illiterate brood, who's own father is, what can only be described as, a brainless, uneducated, patriarchal moron. The traveling community already have a bad name, without this movie making it worse. I just don't understand the point of this movie, or what it's message is. Fassbender is a worthless crook, his father even worse; an illiterate waste of space. He swears at his kids and encourages them to do the same and has the parenting skills of a halfwit. He charges around the countryside stealing and joyriding, whilst pursued by an inept police force. There is no more depth to this movie - it's not the sort of movie anyone should be making these days - society is bad enough. Anyone who can find a deeper meaning than that is delusional, or a massive (delusional) Michael Fassbender fan. If the message is about 'family', well we can do without families like their's. They should be drowned at birth. I rarely get all bent out of shape about, what is essentially just a movie but the message this gives is the wrong one. I still cannot believe Fassbender even considered this, in a career which has been on the up for some time now. There is nothing wrong with the acting, but how hard is it to portray a moron? They were All morons - even the police. I'm not sure who will find this movie's 'message' appealing, but the lack of structure in the script just leaves you wondering what the hell the movie is actually about. I kept thinking surely the movie would take some direction, other than the one we could have guessed from minute one, but no, sadly not. I've had to task my brain more whilst stirring soup. Worth a watch if you have no expectations and your colouring book is full.
Vengeance: A Love Story (2017)
I'm being generous with a score of three, mainly due to the acting of Talitha Bateman. Nick Cage is about as convincing a cop as his hair color. He plays a vigilante detective chasing down a gang of rapists. Actually chasing down isn't quite the right term. He appears, by magic, in some scenes, almost at will, always being in the right place at the right time and we never see how he actually gets there - possibly by accessing worm-holes. Everything about this movie is bad; the script is atrocious; there is no character development, the whole cast is guilty of overacting, or being dull as dishwater, some are just wrongly cast and bad actors. To prove my point, the second-best actor in the movie was a dead cat. The entire story line is not believable, the court process is clearly directed by someone who has never been inside a court and it has no credibility. The make-up is shocking, sets are under-budgeted. It looks as though all the money went into Don Johnson's wardrobe, hair and make-up. The extras are shocking, even by non-actors. Watch for the lady reporter / photographer in beige, when the mother of our bunch of losers speaks to the press. It looks like she's never held a camera before. Despite the crime being as serious as it was, it attracts about 8 reporters and some guy with a 1970's TV camera. Despite there being a vigilante out there, none of the crimes are investigated. I know Nicholas Cage is still a credible actor, but he's going to have to start choosing better scripts - I can only suppose that he's broke. I guess Nicholas must be, given the coffee cup advertisement placement for Ikea. I get the feeling Don Johnson got the Harley. In short, if you are looking for a good film, with good script, acting, story line, make-up, lighting, editing.... don't choose this one. There is nothing new about this story, nothing interesting about it - I just cannot recommend it to anyone. Even the title is wrong - there is no love story? Maybe they just wanted to get extra movie-goers. The worst crime about this movie, is that it was ever made.
I Am Not a Serial Killer (2016)
Weird, but nothing special
I'm really surprised this is ranking so well, as it's simply a fairly weak, but watchable horror movie. I'll give the producers some credit for trying to be original, but there is little substance in it. It starts off okay, but slowly becomes a bit silly. The acting is good, which you would expect from Christopher Lloyd, but the story is just nuts. I mean... a boy, who shows serial-killer tendencies, follows round a serial killer, who turns out to be something other than human. The plot is just plain nuts. I did watch it all the way through, so it's not unwatchable, but it never rises above the mediocre. If it had been me, I wouldn't have cast Chistopher Lloyd in it, he's too well known as as the mad professor from Back to the Future - even after all these years. I would have been more convinced by another actor and I'd have liked the movie to be even darker and a little more factual when it comes to small-town murder victims and how they are processed - in this case, with no police or coroner involved, by a boy and his mother. Brownie points for trying to be original in a genre which has little originality left in it.
Fender Bender (2016)
Dreadfully poor and beyond words
I have seen some reviews claiming this is a 'return to the slasher era'. Well, that about says it all. Cheap, badly written script, poor direction and old hat. It takes 49 minutes for our slasher friend to actually do something at all. He is the most unbelievable slasher of all time. Looks like a bank teller, moves and speaks like he has a brain malfunction and might as well have had a red neon arrow on his head saying 'weirdo', but no one notices. He likes to kill people with what looks like a sharp door-handle, come plasterer's trowel and is so slow a snail could escape him. His victims deserve to die, because they are utter and complete morons. The plot is obvious and the end is even more so. The acting isn't half bad, to say the script was appalling, but the sheer absurdity of it all is laughable. A better title for this farce would have been 'gender bender', because, for reasons never apparent, the killer chooses to carry out his crimes dressed as a gimp. My grandmother could have outrun this douche and she had one leg (ok out-hopped). If you have a feeble mind you may enjoy this drivel, but if you have a brain, don't waste your time and/or money watching this Halloween-clichéd, boring, poor excuse for a movie.
The Accountant (2016)
A movie that grows throughout
This is one of those movies, that doesn't sound that interesting when you read the synopsis, but is a real surprise when you watch it. Affleck is Superb! There a couple of twists and the last few minutes made the entire movie. The story builds, without being tedious and the violence is not gratuitous. Affleck is a hit-man with Autism, which makes him particularly efficient with numbers and killing people - who, to be fair... deserve it! The movie's supporting cast are also excellent. I think a hit-man with higher learning Autism is a refreshing idea and Affleck doesn't overplay the role. Make this one of your must see movies - you won't be disappointed.