• Malignant

    Malignant

    ★★★★½

    Most of James Wan's films don't really do it for me. Other than his work on the second best Fast and Furious film, his films leave me cold or confused or just a little frustrated, especially his horror work (Aquaman we're still working out, so I'll leave it to one side). So colour me red with bloody fucking delight, Malignant is completely and utterly my shit. It is the best genre fun I have had since The Night Comes for…

  • You Only Live Twice

    You Only Live Twice

    ★★½

    Remember in my last review when I said that the early Bond films felt like proper spy capers and not just "a James Bond film"? Well, here it is, the first "a James Bond film", unfortunately also The One Where Bond Does Yellow Face. Even aside from that, this is the least interesting film to me so far, feels the most suited to watching on a Sunday while your parents make a roast dinner.
    HOWEVER! I think this might be…

  • Thunderball

    Thunderball

    ★★★½

    The interesting thing I've found about the first three James Bond films is that they've actually leant more towards the genre of spy thrillers than the genre of Bond films, if you get what I mean. Thunderball is the closest yet to feel like "just a Bond film" and while its underwater sequences were sustained enough to set off my Subnautica PTSD, the first 90 minutes were packed full with so much suspense and spy antics that the film coasted through on goodwill.

  • Goldfinger

    Goldfinger

    ★★★★

    Once again, quite rad! Three highlights:
    1. There's a moment where two zoom shots are used one after the other, it's a properly impressive bit of cinematography.
    2. This is the first of these films where Bond seems vulnerable. He's scared a lot, he messes up, is kind of shit. It makes his character much more interesting than "Scottish man who fucks".
    3. Sexual politics are aged, sure, but there's an all timer sound effect early on when Bond slaps a woman's arse. Incredible work on the part of the SFX team, hope they had lots of fun testing for the perfect sound.

  • Annette

    Annette

    ★★★★

    Like most others, I am confoundingly captivated by Annette. Weirdly, it fits in with F9 for me. Both big and totally sincere and absolutely demanding of the big screen experience and I really am not joking.
    Also want to note, once again the most potent shot for me in a Carax film is one featuring monkeys. I don't know what that means or if it bears significance but it's fun to spot meaningless patterns and it's a damn good shot!

  • From Russia with Love

    From Russia with Love

    ★★★★

    Awesome stuff, this is already a jump in quality from the last, yer dad has been right for almost sixty years with his love of these films. The last act in particular is very much my shit, proving that any film set on a train can be exciting as long as it's not directed by Kenneth Branagh. The dynamic of the "evil Bond" character also rules, very simple idea but just played and shot perfectly.

  • Dr. No

    Dr. No

    ★★★½

    First half is weirdly sedated compared to later entries, feeling closer to a Le Carre adaptation than Bond. That all changes when we get to the island though, with nonsense science, villain monologues and babes. As a hangover watch, it's pretty spot on.

  • Acid Rain

    Acid Rain

    Like the short film equivalent to one of those games you stumble onto on itch.io in the middle of the night and get a nightmare from. Deliberately janky, laced with electronica and contains the potential to be casually cruel.

  • Hedwig and the Angry Inch

    Hedwig and the Angry Inch

    ★★★★

    Really properly joyously queer. It's a film so dedicated to its artifice that I was sold very quickly, this kind of shit completely does it for me. Not 100% on the ending (both how I feel on it and what the fuck actually happened) but the journey there was such plastic perfection that it doesn't matter!

  • Cinderella

    Cinderella

    It's rare I watch a film and think "wow, I was too drunk to appreciate how terrible that film was" but Cinderella is such an event. At least it stars four former Taskmaster contestants, who I much preferred munching melon, punching plaice or seeking satsumas. That's a ratio even most British panel shows struggle to achieve, you've got to give it to them because God knows there's so little else going for this travesty.

  • The Umbrellas of Cherbourg

    The Umbrellas of Cherbourg

    ★★★★

    Properly moving story paired with genuinely some of the best looking costume/production design I've ever seen. None of the songs really stick with me (time will tell on that one) which is a shame for a musical, but as I said, it's just too completely gorgeous to not love at least a little bit.

  • The Strange Ones

    The Strange Ones

    ★★★½

    For a film that holds its cards so close to its chest, you're almost expecting a moment where the cards are revealed. I think the great success of this short is that it never reveals those cards, something that makes me really not want to check out the feature length version of this. The longer you stretch a shadow of a doubt, the more at risk you are of damaging its potency. 14 minutes is not stretch at all.