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Thanks everyone for all the rates, I try and return as many as I can. Cheers

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since 07/03/2013


American Pie - The Wedding (DVD) 31/07/2014

American Pie 3 - The Wedding

American Pie - The Wedding (DVD) Director: Jesse Dylan I wanted something nice and easy tonight, something I could laugh at and not have to expend too many brain cells on, so I decided to check out the new(ish) American Pie movie. To bring you up to speed on the series so far, American Pie is about a collection of youngsters on their wistful journey of life and all the trials and tribulations they face along the way. The first movie was about them in high school, desperately trying to get laid before they all went off to college and kissed goodbye to their former selves forever. The core of the characters are 5 young dudes: Kevin, Jim, Oz, Finch and Stifler. I won’t go into details, I’m sure you’ve all seen it, but highlights include Jim getting caught by his father making love to a pie, and Finch banging Stifler’s mother. American Pie 2 sees the boys maturing (ahem) slightly, and on their summer break from college, where they all meet back up and hire a summer house on the beach, have a mental summer of babes, booze and masturbation with super glue. A very worthy companion to the original film and actually, in my opinion, in many ways superior. So that brings us to the movie I watched tonight, the 3rd entry in the series, American Pie 3: The Wedding (titled American Wedding in the US), and we’re right back in the saddle with all the favourite characters, like old friends. I realised this film is actually 10 years old. How have I not seen this before? Anyway, the film sees the guys graduating from ...

Dude, Where's My Car? (DVD) 02/07/2014

Dude, Where's My Car?

Dude, Where's My Car? (DVD) Director: Danny Leiner Dude, Where’s My Car? is a stoner comedy featuring Ashton Kutcher and Sean William-Scott after one of the heaviest nights of their life. Jesse (Kutcher) and Chester (William-Scott) wake up on the couch with no memory of what occurred the night before. After a couple of bongs and a phone call from their girlfriends (“The Twins”), they realise that they have forgotten to buy their loved ones a birthday present and head out for the day. Which is where the adventure begins. As the title of the movie would suggest, they have lost their car and have no recollection of where it is, and the movie is essentially an 80 minute quest for them to get it back. Along the way they get into all sorts of scrapes and hairy situations, including stealing a suitcase of money from a transsexual stripper, smoking bongs with a dog, getting captured and locked in a cage by an Ostrich farmer, and getting mixed up with intergalactic cultist Zoltan who is searching for a mysterious device that is capable of destroying the universe. It’s silly as hell but really good fun. Other than the two main stars, there isn't really anyone of note in this. Sean William-Scott is probably best known for his portrayal of Stifler in the American Pie movies, and I don’t think he ever really escaped that light hearted comedy stereotype. But what he does, he does very well, and he is good enough here. Ashton Kutcher has shown other dimensions to his acting prowess with films like The Butterfly ...

The Last Waltz (DVD) 25/06/2014

The Last Waltz

The Last Waltz (DVD) Director: Martin Scorsese The Last Waltz is a 2 hour feature film based around one of the most memorable gigs ever. Ever heard of Bob Dylan And The Band? Of course you’ve heard of Bob Dylan, but The Band were the band that he recorded and toured with between 1965 and 1977. The Band were an established outfit in their own right, and toured before and after those years, but they were (and still are) best known for their time with Bob Dylan. This rock n roll movie documents the final ever show they played together on November 25th 1976. But this is no normal rock concert. The Band were an incredibly popular and connected band within the industry, so when they threw a final farewell, everyone wanted to perform. And I mean EVERYone. The concert includes performances from: Eric Clapton, Van Morrison, Ringo Starr, Dr. John, Ronnie Wood, Neil Diamond, Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, Emmylou Harris, Robbie Robertsoon, The Staples, Bob Dylan. And the whole thing is directed and framed by Martin Scorsese! Possibly the greatest rock n roll movie ever made. The format of the movie is much like you would expect — extensive footage of the concert itself, spliced together with various talking heads with everyone involved, everything presented in a wonderfully digitally remastered audio visual experience. When you have Scorsese at the reigns, you know you are in capable hands. All of the bands and music featured is stuff that Scorsese grew up listening to, songs that formulated him and had a ...

After The Sunset (DVD) 23/06/2014

After The Sunset

After The Sunset (DVD) Director: Brett Ratner After The Sunset is an action crime movie surrounding a couple of jewel thieves, Max (Pierce Brosnan) and Lola (Salma Hayek). Always chasing them, always just a little step behind them, is bungling FBI agent Stan (Woody Harrelson). The main plot of the movie surrounds a collection of diamonds that were supposedly embedded in the sword of Napoleon, before the sword was dismantled and the jewels dispersed to the 4 corners of the world. The film opens with Agent Stan desperately trying to protect one of the jewels as our two lovable rogues snaffle it from right underneath his nose. They retire to the Caribbean with the ill gotten gains, only for Stan to follow them out there in hot pursuit. There is one jewel left from the collection that they haven’t stolen yet, and it just so happens that there is a jewel convention on a cruise ship displaying that very diamond in a few days. You see where this is going right? Max gets mixed up with some local gangsters, led by Don Cheadle, who want in on the jewel heist. Everyone is trying to pull a fast one on everyone else as the film bumbles along predictably. There is nothing here that you haven’t seen before. It’s a standard action crime movie, leaning more towards slapstick type humour than gritty realism, with a ridiculous heist at the end and an even more ridiculous twist ending. It’s ok, nothing special, probably just below average I would say. The movie has an all star cast of really great actors — Pierce ...

Drop Dead Fred (DVD) 11/06/2014

Drop Dead Fred

Drop Dead Fred (DVD) Director: Ate de Jong This review was written before Rik Mayalls passing but seems a fair tribute to post now. Drop Dead Fred is a slightly surreal comedy about a girl and her imaginary friend. Elizabeth is the lead, played by Phoebe Cates (Gremlins), and the imaginary friend, Fred, is playing by the brilliant Rik Mayall. Lizzie’s life is falling apart a little bit as she hits a sort of mid life crisis over the course of a day. She has recently seperated from her husband Charles, and when she tries to reconcile with him on her lunch break, not only does he tell her he definitely wants a divorce, but he basically doesn't care that he cheated on her either. Nice chap. Over the course of the same lunch break, she gets mugged, has her car stolen, which results in her being late for work and she loses her job. Then enters her mega bitch of a mother Polly, who is over bearing and controlling, and forces Lizzie to move back home and live with her, back to the house where she grew up as a kid. Everything is a bit depressing up to this point but things soon start picking up as we get to meet Fred. Through a series of flashbacks, it’s made clear than when she was a little girl, Lizzie and her imaginary friend Fred were best buddies, inseparable, always getting up to mischief and trouble, some of it actually quite anarchic and strong considering it’s a little girl involved (one particular scene involves them smashing windows with a hammer). And even though it would be Lizzie who ...

Face (DVD) 23/05/2014


Face (DVD) Director: Antonia Bird Face is a British crime drama surrounding a heist gone haywire. 5 criminals are assembled to carry out a robbery on a security cash depot. Robert Carlyle is the sort of level headed nice guy leader of the group, Ray. You have wildcard Julian (Phil Davis from Quadrophenia), loving father but complete nutter Dave (Ray Winstone), and the young newbie to the group Jason (played by Damon Albarn from Blur in his acting debut). The robbery goes to plan (if you could call it that) pretty much, but when they make it back to the hide out with the loot, the return is hardly anywhere near what they were expecting — instead of a couple of million quid to divide up, they end up with only have 65 grand each. They all go to the pub to try and put it behind them and move on. They seem to have got away with it, but everything starts to unravel over the next 24 hours as one by one they get robbed of their cut of the cash, leaving a trail of destruction and dead bodies left right and centre. The film is essentially our rabble of robbers trying to figure out who relieved them of the money, which involves a lot of shooting and speeding around in shitty old motors and running into a room shouting “WHERE’S THE FACKIN MONEY?!?” repeatedly. It’s not a particularly inspiring film, certainly not going to set the genre alight. I didn't particularly enjoy it. Most of the cast are ok in this. Robert Carlyle does an ok job, as does Ray Winstone, who are the sort of main two of the ...

Green Street (DVD) 21/05/2014

Green Street

Green Street (DVD) Director: Lexi Alexander Green Street is an independent English drama movie following the exploits of a football hooligan firm associated with West Ham United F.C. — the Green Street Elite. The main character is dweeb Matt (Elijah Wood) who is a student of journalism at a top University in the US. When some cocaine is discovered in his dorm, he takes the blame for his roomie Jeremy in exchange for 10 grand, mainly because Jeremy’s family are very powerful and Matt is afraid to step forward. He uses the pay out to travel to England and hooks up with his sister. He stays with her for a while and ends up falling in with her brother and his hooligan firm mates. He is soon drawn into the shady world of football hooliganism and ultra violence, partaking in multiple mass brawls. Initially he is shunned by the gang, but he soon earns his stripes and becomes accepted as bonafine member of the Green Street Elite crew. Along the way they have clashes with various other firms, including the infamous Millwall firm, who the GSE boys have a long and complicated bitter rivalry with. Matt gets sucked in too deep but finds it impossible to get out, drawn to the satisfaction he gets from kicked people’s eyeballs into their skull. The film leads up to a vicious climactic confrontation in an abandoned quarry between the GSE and Millwall. Now on paper it shouldn’t really work. American college priss falls in with the wrong crowd and goes on a spree of destruction and violence so he can find ...

Afghan Star (DVD) 04/04/2014

Afghan Star

Afghan Star (DVD) Director: Havana Marking Afghan Star is a documentary movie following the Afghanistan version of X Factor. It may sound like a slightly silly concept for a movie, but it really is quite an eye opening experience. From 1996 the Taliban made television, music and dancing illegal. You weren't even allowed to have a computer — if those guys bust into your house and find you have a PC, with or without an internet connection, you’d get a bullet to the brain before they even pause for breath. In 2004 everything changed with regards to the Taliban rulers and as the result of elections, television and music were introduced back into Afghanistan society. The television programme Afghan Star is the countries very first talent show. The film follows 3 contestants in particular on their road to the final, profiling them and their families, and everyone else involved with the show — the production team of Afghan Star, the people at the television station, the show’s number one fan, even the people who work at the television mast station are explored and interviewed. At first I was a little skeptical about all this, but what unfolded over the 90 minutes was actually quite interesting and certainly very opening and insightful. Being a documentary, one of the most important things is the subjects themselves, and the documentary does a very good job of getting into every nook and cranny, and asking all the right questions. The style of the film is certainly nothing new and may as well be ...

A Town Called Panic (DVD) 17/02/2014

A Town Called Panic

A Town Called Panic (DVD) Director: Vincent Patar A Town Called Panic is a French stop-motion animation movie that is definitely up there as one of the most bizarre pieces I’ve watched so far. The story is quite difficult to summarise as it comprises mainly of a string of insane little set pieces and shenanigans. The main 3 characters are a Cowboy, an Indian and a Horse. They live together in a little house. Horse is very much the grown up in this dynamic, like a much older brother or father figure. Cowboy and Indian are best buddies, and they want to buy Horse something nice for his birthday. They decide to make him a barbeque out of bricks so they order 50 bricks online. However they muck the order up, and instead order 50 million bricks. Then stuff starts to get really crazy. They stack the bricks on top of the house to hide the mistake from Horse, which results in the house collapsing into the ground. Horse goes mental, gives them a slap, and they set to rebuilding the house, but someone keeps stealing the walls every time they put them up. They discover that some mysterious alien looking type creatures are stealing their walls, which leads them to a bear’s cave, which in turn results in them plummeting towards the centre of the earth. Then they end up in the middle of the arctic, enslaved by some mad scientists who have built a giant mechanical penguin to throw snowballs at animals. They use the snowball thrower to try and get back home, but end up in the middle of the ocean, where they ...

A Mighty Wind (DVD) 06/02/2014

A Mighty Wind

A Mighty Wind (DVD) Director: Christopher Guest A Mighty Wind is a mockumentary comedy movie from the same masterminds that brought us such comedy smashes as Waiting For Guffman and This Is Spinal Tap. The story follows 3 folk bands reuniting and playing together, for the first time in almost half a century, at a memorial concert for folk music legend Irvin Steinbloom. Of course being in the same comedy vein as This Is The Spinal Tap, nothing is straight forward, and all of the acts are silly and hilarious in their own way. There is troubadour outfit The Folksmen, long lost lovers Mitch & Mickey, and ridiculous folk band The (New) Main Street Singers. The story doesn’t involve much more than that — it plays out much like a real life documentary about a big concert being put together. All of the acts reunite after many years, leading up to big show at New York’s infamous The Town Hall venue. All of the acts join together on stage at the end to sing A Mighty Wind. The film closes out showing what all of the acts get up to following the big reunion. The story doesn’t sounds great on paper, but anyone who has seen this collective’s previous body of work know exactly what you are in for, which is pure comedy genius. Christopher Guest is the mastermind behind this movie, and the other movies from this team that you may recognise, and this piece adopts the same loose style. There was little script for the players to work with so much of the comedy contained within is improvised, which lends a ...

Kicking And Screaming (DVD) 04/02/2014

Kicking and Screaming

Kicking And Screaming (DVD) Director: Jesse Dylan I watched a severely awful Will Ferrell movie last week, so to try and eradicate that memory and get into the spirit of the day, a football themed Will Ferrell movie it was to be. Kicking And Screaming is a light hearted family comedy movie based around the world of Little-League Soccer. Will Ferrell plays Phil, a drip of a man who has spent pretty much his entire life being psychologically belittled and bullied by his father Buck (Robert Duvall). Phil’s son Sam plays for Little-League Soccer team The Gladiators, who are the Barcelona of the local league i.e. pretty much unbeatable. However, Sam is always kept on the bench and hardly ever gets a game, which is exactly the same torment that was bestowed on Phil by Buck many years earlier, so bully Buck is carrying out the same overbearing competitiveness on grandson that he did on his son. The main strand of the story starts to unfold when Sam gets transferred to rival team The Tigers, who are bottom of the league and always get beaten, a team full of losers basically. The dad coaching the team stops turning up one day, and faced with an opportunity to take on his father, Phil decides to take over the coaching of the team. It’s a somewhat predictable story, a classic father vs son underdog tale, but it did just enough to entertain me and leave me feeling positive. The main attraction here is obviously Will Ferrell. The script and story doesn’t quite give him the usual room he has for improvisation and ...

A Night At The Roxbury (DVD) 30/01/2014

A Night At The Roxbury

A Night At The Roxbury (DVD) Director: John Fortenberry A Night At The Roxbury is a comedy movie satirising late 90s American nightclub culture. Based on a Saturday Night Live sketch, it sees buffoon brothers Steve (Will Ferrell) and Doug (Chris Kattan) repeatedly donning cheap polyester leisure suits and hitting the clubs in search of ladies and excitement. The main strand of the story involves the brothers breaking out from their Dad’s flower business and trying to set up their own nightclub, with a subplot involving Steve getting married to his childhood sweetheart. The film is very obviously based around a much shorter sketch, with most of the already pretty lame jokes running stale after about 30 minutes, and ultimately resulting in quite a poor comedy movie. Obviously the main source of the humour and the plot is the two brothers. I don’t think I’ve ever seen Chris Kattan in anything before or since this movie. He’s not particularly funny, doesn’t have a very humorous on screen prescience, and has a really weird monkey mouth. He does his best to drag Will Ferrell down who is, as always, on good form, providing pretty much all the laughs in the movie. There are quite a few cameos along the way, none of which really provide any extra humour or depth to the film, but are interesting none the less. Stiffler’s Mum (Jennifer Coolidge) pops up as a traffic cop. The bouncer of the Roxbury nightclub is played by the big dude from The Green Mile, Michael Clarke Duncan. There are a couple of others, but ...

A League Of Their Own (DVD) 20/01/2014

A League Of Their Own

A League Of Their Own (DVD) Director: Penny Marshall Everyone seemed to have seen it apart from me. It’s been on my to-watch list for a while. A League Of Their Own is a part fiction, part biographical drama movie about the first all women American baseball league during the war in the 1940s. It’s from director Penny Marshall, who has brought us such gems as Big and Awakenings, and has a decent roster of big stars. The film opens in some hick farm town where sisters Dottie (Geena Davis) and Kit (Lori Petty) are spotted by a baseball scout at their local game. They are enlisted to try out for one of the first five teams that will formulate the first ever women’s baseball league. They join up, make the cut, and the film follows their team, the Rockford Peaches, on the way to the World Series. The team is coached by ex pro ball player Jimmy (Tom Hanks), who lost his way from the game due to his excessive drinking. The team also comprises of Madonna and Rosie O’Donnell, and Bill Pullman shows up a bit later as one of their husbands. It’s a classic rags to riches story, with a few laughs and plenty of touching moments along the way. The cast are all pretty average, I wasn’t really enamoured by any of them. There is a weird section at the beginning where we see an eldery version of Geena Davis, played by a different actress but with Davis’s voice dubbed over the top, which just didn’t work at all. Madonna is ok, doing her classic tomboy with attitude routine. The rest of the team are instantly forgettable. ...

13 Assassins (DVD) 13/01/2014

13 Assassins

13 Assassins (DVD) Director: Takashi Miike Takashi Miike. The man behind such movies as Audition, Visitor Q, Ichi The Killer. Those of you that have seen any of those movies, you’ll know what he is capable of — not only is he a visionary director and masterful storyteller, but the dude has got a screw loose. He doesn’t hold back when it’s comes to gore and weirdness. When you commit to watching one of his flicks, you know you are in for a wild ride. 13 Assassins is a martial arts epic set in 1800s Japan. It’s an intensely deep and complex movie, so bear with me while I try and simplify and summarise the plot. The story revolves around the Shogun, who were a sort of political movement of samurai warriors that ruled over Japan in that era. The Shogun is also the name of their leader. The main plotline here revolves around Naritsugu, the evil younger brother of the current Shogun. He’s the sort of ruler that makes Darth Vader look like Mother Theresa. I’m not kidding. The sort of guy who cuts off a poor innocent girl’s arms and legs, cuts out her tongue, and uses her as a sex toy, only to cast her out in the mud when he grows bored of her. Right from the very first few minutes, it’s clear Naritsugu is the baddie you’re going to love to hate. It’s becoming clear to all the land that the way of the Shogun and samurai is too old fashioned ("Swords are only good for cutting melons!" exclaims one whorehouse owner), and it’s heavily rumoured that their time is coming to an end. A splinter group of ...

The Campaign (DVD) 08/01/2014

The Campaign

The Campaign (DVD) Director: Jay Roach The Campaign is a political comedy starring comedy heavyweights Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis, and directed by comedy mastermind Jay Roach (Austin Powers, Meet The Parents, Meet The Fockers). The film is about one particular political campaign of Congressman Cam Brady (Ferrell) in the state of North Carolina. The district he commands over is so tiny and uninterested that he is the only person running for office, and with no competition it looks like a done deal before the voting has even begun. However, a mishap with a hilariously explicit answering machine message to a Christian family, and his stock dips massively. Evil businessman Glen and Wade (John Lithgow and Dan Aykroyd) exploit this gap in the market and put forward a nobody into the race, someone that they control and can use to “insource” a load of cheap labour by handing over control of the district to a Chinese corporation. Enter Marty Huggins (Galifianakis), a camp nobody who will do anything to win the approval of his father, and agrees to go into shady dealings with Glen and Wade. What unfolds over the next 90 minutes is an entertaining underdog comedy as Marty blazes a trail to political office and essentially gets drawn into an extended mud slinging bitch fight with Cam as they try and defame and scandalize each other and put each other off their stride. The blow by blow one-upmanship goes further and further each time, including things like romancing the other ones wife, winning ...
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