Mike has written 8 reviews for films rated ★★½ .

  • Sunshine

    Sunshine

    ★★½

    Despite it's ridiculously contrived plot, I found myself sucked into the predicament and could even begin to understand why most of the characters did what they did and said what they said. It effectively built tension and it had that "what would I be doing in that situation?" thing going on. It had me thinking. Me! Thinking! Then it lost me with its supernatural slash horror slash slasher final act that, looking back, was kind of portended, yet still felt like it came out of nowhere, not belonging with the rest of the movie. Shame.

  • Tower Heist

    Tower Heist

    ★★½

    Ingredients
    1 cup Ben Stiller (plain or regular)
    1 cup Eddie Murphy (100% Norbit free)
    1 ½ tablespoons Matthew Broderick (check the best-before date)
    1 teaspoon Alan Alda (get the evil whole stuff, not the mash)
    1 bunch of Generic Supporting Cast (the more eclectic the better)
    1 heaped cup Generic Heist Plot Line (use an old The Italian Job if you've nothing better lying around)
    100g Skyscraper Set Piece Action (with extra rope dangling)
    1 Macguffin

    Method
    1. Just add water and kind of mush everything together.

    Serves Fewer than the movie execs hoped.

  • Inglourious Basterds

    Inglourious Basterds

    ★★½

    Far too much extraneous crap. Sure, Tarantino can do dialogue like no one else, and there is some fun to be had in this take on World War II. But it's just too much. And I know it's an homage, but that extra "u" in Inglourious and the "e" in Basterds really bugs me.

  • THX 1138

    THX 1138

    ★★½

    Lucas goes all student film-maker on his first outing, favouring the artistic over exposition. The result is as incomprehensible as The Phantom Menace, but at least shows some originality. Which isn't saying much, unfortunately.

  • Unknown

    Unknown

    ★★½

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

    Ah, so now I know what happens when you try to cross Bourne and Taken without sufficient character depth. Effective enough at what it is, but what it is isn't much: Liam Neeson spends most of this movie forgetting he can kick arse, but then he remembers and kicks arse.

  • Thor

    Thor

    ★★½

    What really gets me is the town in the middle of nowhere full of shops and cafés with wi-fi and nightclubs and a superbly equipped hospital and its own little traffic light on its solitary four-way intersection and NO HOUSES. It loses a little when the sole grounding in our world is so fake, especially when we're supposed to care for an artificial invincible video-game Valhalla. Earnest performances and a solid, basic and predictable plot can't make it more than a yeah but nah but yeah but nah. But yeah. But...nyah.

  • The Hangover Part II

    The Hangover Part II

    ★★½

    Apply The Hangover generously. Rinse. Repeat.

  • Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom

    Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom

    ★★½

    Sure, it has big boots to fill, but it is too limited; it doesn't get close to its illustrious predecessor:

    (1) The villain (um, name?): one-dimensional bore. [cf Bellosh...er...Belloq, and, um, the fucking NAZIS]

    (2) The heroine (Willie? Really?): very, very, very annoying. [cf Marion Ravenwood]

    (3) The sidekick (Short Round): juvenile, very annoying. [cf Sallah]

    (4) The MacGuffin (stones? rocks?): plain uninteresting. [cf The Ark of the goddamn Covenent]

    The one thing it does have? Indiana Jones.