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  • Fear in the Night

    Fear in the Night 1972

    ★★ Rewatched 31 Jan, 2016

    Standard Jimmy Sangster "let's drive someone insane for money" story which at least has an interesting setting in an empty boarding school. Sadly it's a setting the film fails to adequately exploit, as it also fails to do with Peter Cushing and Joan |Collins who must have filmed their scenes in about a week, with most of the action concerning Ralph Bates and the normally reliable Judy Geeson, who is (at times literally) on auto-pilot.
    No surprises, bar an unsettling…

  • Crimson Peak

    Crimson Peak 2015

    ★★½ Watched 30 Jan, 2016

    Gorgeous looking but utterly empty attempt by Del Toro to pay homage to everything from Hitchcok to Bava, and all inbetween.

    Like Sleepy Hollow and Grindhouse it spends a lot of money trying to replicate something that was originally very cheap, and the results can't help but look utterly false in comparison. But while these may rollick along with good stories and fun performances, Crimson Peak is played so straight, and the story far too prolonged, that there is very…

  • Legend

    Legend 2015

    ★★ Watched 29 Jan, 2016

    Hopelessly confused and far too in awe of a pair of ruthless murderers to give us anything other than a cartoon gangster story which steals from Goodfellas and Lock, Stock in equal measure.
    Hardy is great as Reggie but his Ron seems to much of a caricature 'mental case' to convince of anything other than a panto villain.

    It looks great, the soundtrack is a good mix of standard gangster tropes and a bit of obscura, but the whole tone is wrong and manages to tell far less story in much more time than The Krays did.

  • The Loft

    The Loft 2014

    ★★★ Added

    20 years too late 'erotic thriller' about five arseholes who share an apartment for naughtiness, a halcyon arrangement until an unfortunate dead woman turns up in the bed and no one knows whodunnit.
    It's got a good cast and an intruiging, if sometimes infuriating, structure meaning every ten minutes one character will suddenly say "oh yeah, I forgot to mention..." and we're treated to a lengthy flashback (within a flashback). It keeps things bobbing along and means you'll assume every…

  • Jupiter Ascending

    Jupiter Ascending 2015

    ★½ Watched 09 Jan, 2016


    Yep, everything I'd heard was true. Some excellent effects (apart from the early, appalling, Phantom Menace esque backdrops) and an excellent score cannot make up for the sheer jaw droopingly incomprehension, bizarre performances and tedious length of what Warners would become their Star Wars franchise. Good luck with that.

    Best bit:
    "I have more in commom with a dog than with you."
    "I love dogs."

  • Kingsman: The Secret Service

    Kingsman: The Secret Service 2015

    ★★★★ Rewatched 02 Jan, 2016

    Enjoyed even more on a second viewing. That final gag really does grate though; I can only assume it was supposed to be one final dig at Bond, and not being that kind of movie, but it is woefully misjudged.

  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens

    Star Wars: The Force Awakens 2015

    ★★★★ Watched 23 Dec, 2015

    It's not perfect. There is a tendency to fanboy-ism and smart arsery that becomes a bit grating after a while (every character is a wise-cracking zinger machine), and it gets a bit flabby in the middle, but over all the feeling The Force Awakens generates is one of massive relief.
    It's well cast, the new characters are (mostly) well drawn (I'm still not entirely sure what Fin's motivation was), and it leaves enough questions to promise a more in depth…

  • Holiday in Handcuffs

    Holiday in Handcuffs 2007

    ★★½ Rewatched 22 Dec, 2015

    What's you get past the ludicrous premise, this is actually a fairly well made if utterly standard festive movie.
    What's interesting is how much better it is than any number of big budget studio releases over the past few years (think Four Christmases, Christmas with the Kranks etc) which use big name glamour and expensive production to disguise the fact they are dire. TV movies like this have to rely on a good script and good chemistry between it's TV…

  • The Long Kiss Goodnight

    The Long Kiss Goodnight 1996

    ★★★★ Rewatched 20 Dec, 2015

    "Are you thinking what I'm thinking?"
    "I hope not, cos I'm thinking about how much my balls hurt."

    It's not Christmas without a little Shane Black.

  • Christmas with the Kranks

    Christmas with the Kranks 2004

    ★★ Watched 16 Dec, 2015

    Tim Allen and Jamie Lee Curtis are far too good comedy actors for this dreadful TV-movie premise which somehow ended up as a major studio release (featuring a record breaking outdoor set!).
    The tale of a couple whose grown up daughter won't be around for christmas so they decide they'll go on a cruise instead. Their neighbours decide to make their life hell for December. Nice.

    Unsurprisingly the film was beloved by the christian groups who constantly tell us there…

  • Sleepless in Seattle

    Sleepless in Seattle 1993

    ★★ Rewatched 10 Dec, 2015

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    Poor Bill Pullman.
    I don't understand romantic films that want us to cheer on someone dumpinh a poor innocent to be with their soulmate. Especially one they've never even seen.

  • Zack and Miri Make a Porno

    Zack and Miri Make a Porno 2008

    ★★★★ Rewatched 08 Dec, 2015

    Essentially a much ruder version of When Harry Met Sally, but when everyone is on top of their game and having so much fun that is no bad thing.
    As much Kevin Smith paying homage to his own cinematic origins as a celebration of his own love of utter filth, and probably my fave of his after Dogma.