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  • The Girl 2012

    ★★★ Watched 08 Jan, 2013 2

    "There was a young lady of Trent,
    who said that she knew what it meant,
    when he asked her to dine,
    private room, lots of wine,
    she knew, oh she knew,
    but she went!"

    Why is it films about magicians always come out in pairs? I've always regarded 'Hitchcock' as having dark magical cinematic powers after a screening of Psycho drew an overly excited yelp from me during its climax and left me spellbound. So here we have 'The Girl',…

  • Total Recall 2012

    ★★ Watched 05 Jan, 2013

    Kept my interest for the first half as I played the comparison game with the original, with this version coming off very much second best each time. The "2 Weeks" red herring would have been fantastic, had that bit not been in the trailer. Soon bored by the continued disappointment I was ultimately defeated by a couple of issues:

    Firstly, it wouldn't be an exaggeration to say 80% of the shots contain lens flare. Not only is this technique as…

  • Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows 2011

    ★★★½ Rewatched 02 Jan, 2013

    This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.

  • The Descendants 2011

    ★★★★ Watched 01 Jan, 2013

    I love films that seem to evolve right before your eyes and this is certainly one of them. It gets off to a terrible start as the main character delivers a set up piece of narration that is so heavy handed I was already dreading what was to come. But the focus subtly shifts and widens during the course of the movie from Clooney's struggling father character to those around him as he reconnects and lets them into his world.…

  • My Neighbor Totoro 1988

    ★★★ Watched 01 Jan, 2013 6

    First film of the year and I wanted it to be a 100% bonafide classic to start things off right! I'd heard My Neighbour Totoro praised as 'the best animation movie of all time' so when it popped up on Blu-Ray I insisted that Santa bring me a copy. Yet a good way into it I was getting a little impatient. The story of two children discovering the wonders of the countryside had a certain charm, but not enough to…

  • The Cabin in the Woods 2012

    ★★★★ Watched 30 Dec, 2012

    Escalates beautifully with a string of wonderful surprises along the way. Horror hasn't been this much fun since the Evil Dead movies!

  • Bronson 2008

    ★★★ Watched 29 Dec, 2012

    Great performance aside, I found the lack of plot made for an ultimately empty experience. Maybe I'm missing something here, but is it not simply a film about a man beating people up in different locations or is there more to it? Actually, it's probably ridiculous to put the performance aside as that's clearly the film and Tom Hardy throws absolutely everything into it. Not convinced the subject deserved the effort though.

  • The Dark Knight Rises 2012

    ★★★ Rewatched 29 Dec, 2012

    "Not a lot of people know what it feels like to be angry, in your bones" - John Blake

    Rewatch, on Blu-Ray and a much more enjoyable experience this time around. The hurried pacing wasn't as annoying and the lack of focus on the film's main character allowed me to enjoy the other members of the piece, each having their moment to shine. Still, despite its attempts to bring the trilogy to an epic conclusion I wanted more of the Batman.

  • Prometheus 2012

    ★★ Rewatched 28 Dec, 2012

    "It's not a traditional foetus" - David

    Rewatch, this time on Blu-Ray (yeah, thanks Mum), and this line really stood out. Not only is it from the best scene in the film, but seems to sum up the movie. The misshapen bits still bothered me, but I was able to focus on the stuff that worked and the extra/alternate scenes gave additional insight into the creative process if not actual answers. The more violent conception seemed more in keeping with…

  • The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey 2012

    ★★★ Watched 26 Dec, 2012 1

    With his LotR trilogy and King Kong remake, Peter Jackson owned Christmas for four consecutive years. His return to Middle Earth has also brought back my festive family cinema trip tradition (last year's Girl With The Dragon Tattoo just wasn't the same). I'd wanted to go to the 48fps 3D version, but decided that would be too radical an experience for my ageing parents so settled for 2D - thought I'd mention that now since it's been quite the talking…

  • Half Nelson 2006

    ★★★ Watched 16 Dec, 2012

    Fichtean Dialectics (Hegelian Dialectics) is based upon four concepts:

    Everything is transient and finite, existing in the medium of time.

    Everything is composed of contradictions (opposing forces).

    Gradual changes lead to crises, turning points when one force overcomes its opponent force (quantitative change leads to qualitative change).

    Change is helical (spiral), not circular (negation of the negation).

  • The Amazing Spider-Man 2012

    ★★½ Watched 15 Dec, 2012

    Not again...really? Oh go on then.

    Bit like when that mate down the pub tells you that boring story you've heard many times before, but you all like him enough to not interrupt and he's had a few so at least it's a bit different from the last time. Hang on, that's me...

    Remake fatigue aside, I actually liked the two leads (especially Emma Stone in a lab coat and long socks) and Spider-Man on a couple of occasions actually…