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From thrillers to sci-fi to horror, here's our pick of 20 films from 1986 that surely deserve a bit more love...
A fascinating year for film, 1986. It was a time when a glossy, expensive movie about handsome men in planes could dominate the box-office, sure (that would be Top Gun). But it was also a year when Oliver Stone went off with just $6m and came back with Platoon, one of the biggest hits of the year both financially and in terms of accolades. It was also a period when the British movie industry was briefly back on its feet, resulting in a new golden age of great films - one or two of them are even on this list.
As ever, there were certain films that, despite their entertainment value or genuine brilliance in terms of movie making, somehow managed to slip through the net. So to redress the balance a little, »
22 years since their last attempt - 1993's disasterpiece Super Mario Bros - Nintendo have announced plans to return to movie making.
Hidden in the company's June earnings report, it says: "A more active approach will be taken in areas outside the video game business, including visual content production and character merchandising."
Of course, "visual content production" is business speak for film and TV, which means that a reboot of Bob Hoskins' most embarrassing hour could well be on the cards.
Nintendo is dipping its toes into Hollywood's shark-infested waters after the failure of Adam Sandler's video game-themed blockbuster Pixels, which is currently circling around 16% on Rotten Tomatoes.
In it, the gaming giant licensed the use of such classic characters as Donkey Kong and the dog from Duck Hunt, which has baffled many critics as the script boasts little to no real understanding of gaming culture.
A previous success »
Some films are bad. In fact some films are so bad, even the actors promoting them can't deny just how bad they are, as these cinematic turncoats prove...
1. George Clooney: "I think we might have killed the franchise."
Film: Batman & Robin (1997)
Box office: $238.2 million
Rotten Tomatoes rating: 11%
"My phone rang, and the head of Warner Bros said, 'Come into my office, you are going to play Batman in a Batman film' and I said, 'Yeah!' I called my friends and they screamed and I screamed and we couldn't believe it!
"I just thought the last one had been successful so I thought I was just going to be in a big successful franchise movie. I think we might have killed the franchise."
2. Arnold Schwarzenegger: "It's the worst film I have ever made."
Film: Red Sonja (1985)
Box office: $6.9 million
Rotten Tomatoes rating: 15%
"It's the worst film I have ever made. »
It turns out Tatum is still on board, but the incident got us thinking of some other superhero castings that nearly were but never will be:
(Nb Please take it as read that Jude Law was considered for all of these roles.)
Hugh Jackman has become so synonymous with the iconic X-Man that it's strange to think of anyone else taking on the role (even if they inevitably will). But before he had been cast, Russell Crowe was considered to play the angry Canadian mutant, and is credited with directing Bryan Singer's attention towards his fellow Aussie.
Bob Hoskins became an actor by accident when he accompanied a friend to an audition at London’s leftwing Unity theatre in 1969, and achieved TV stardom as the doomed travelling salesman in Dennis Potter’s Pennies From Heaven. In 1980, he became an international star in Scottish director John Mackenzie’s The Long Good Friday, his first major screen role, as the East End gangster Harold Shand who dreams of transforming his minor criminal empire into a legitimate enterprise by rejuvenating London’s decaying docklands and playing host to the 1988 Olympics. Hoskins’s Shand was compared favourably with Edward G Robinson’s seminal Little Caesar of 1931.
Related: Bob Hoskins: a career in pictures
Continue reading »
- Philip French
Not every movie is perfect, but Super Mario Bros. is the movie that tainted the video game movie genre, ended the careers of its directors, and is infamous for being all-around mediocre. At least, according to the latest installment of Honest Trailers. Watch it below. The Screen Junkies series has tackled many sub-par films, so it’s kind of a shocker that it took the producers this long to feature Super Mario Bros. The film starred the late Bob Hoskins and John Leguizamo as brotherly plumbers, Mario and Luigi. To save a princess (Samantha Matthis) they have to travel to another dimension and release her from the clutches of an evil dictator, King Koopa (Dennis Hopper). Other nods to the video game source material lie in the presence of Toad, Bertha, the fungus growing all over the place, the Goombas, and Yoshi. But overall it was an epic »
Welcome to today's edition of Nerd Alert, where we have all the quirky, nerdy news that you crave in one convenient spot. What do we have in store for you on this terrific Tuesday? Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice's new trailer gets mashed up with It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Iron Man takes to the streets of Los Santos in Grand Theft Auto V and Real Fake History examines Little Mac's legend in Mike Tyson's Punch Out. Not enough for you? Then check out Game of Thrones' 8-bit death scenes and the most beautiful movies in cinematic history. Oh, and we have the Super Mario Bros. honest trailer you've been waiting for since 1993! So, sit back, relax and check out all that today's Nerd Alert has to offer.
Batman v Superman and It's Always Sunny Mashup
Just a few weeks ago at Comic-Con, Warner Bros. unveiled the »
Throughout the supplements on Arrow’s new (rather impressive) Blu-ray edition of this landmark gangster film, nearly everyone involved speaks of their collective desire to simply make the best film they possibly could, and in many ways, The Long Good Friday is just about the most natural result of that pursuit. Nothing goes unaccounted for, the characters are all richly drawn, the narrative drive is forceful without overwhelming a chance for reflection, and there’s just enough of a mystery to the whole thing to keep the audience hooked. The satisfaction that can come from such a well-rounded, expertly-delivered film can sometimes, however, be diminished by the sheer contentedness of the thing. Life is unwieldy, unpredictable, and sometimes incomprehensible, and films that ignore those qualities in the pursuit of “perfection” can feel closed-off.
- Scott Nye
★★★★★ Mona Lisa, released in 1986 and written/directed by Irish poet and novelist Neil Jordan, shines out as a rough diamond, a masterpiece of British cinema undeniably worthy of its classical title. In one of the most powerful roles of his career, the late great Bob Hoskins stars as George, a low-level criminal who returns from a long stretch in prison and starts trying to put his life together. He has a teenage daughter, who he tries to visit, as soon as he can, only for the scene to degenerate into a violent slanging match between George and his ex-wife. This opening holds in microcosm the complex conflicting elements of George's character.
- CineVue UK
Stars: Bob Hoskins, Cathy Tyson, Robbie Coltrane, Michael Caine, Clarke Peters, Kate Hardie, Zoë Nathenson, Sammi Davis, Rod Bedall, Joe Brown, Pauline Melville | Written by Neil Jordan, David Leland | Directed by Neil Jordan
The second of Arrow Video’s recent Bob Hoskins releases, Mona Lisa may be the better movie of the two. When you look at the quality of The Long Good Friday and how good the movie is, this should be taken as a hint about how good this release from Arrow Video is. Not heavy in special features, it is the movie that speaks for itself both in the quality of the restoration and how relevant the film still feels to this day.
- Paul Metcalf
Mona Lisa, 1986.
Directed by Neil Jordan.
An ex-con just released from prison lands a job driving a call girl from job to job.
Arrow Films follow-up their excellent release of The Long Good Friday with Mona Lisa, the 1986 crime drama directed by Neil Jordan (The Company of Wolves) and starring the late, great Bob Hoskins. Hoskins plays George, a criminal released from prison and looking for a job. After going to see his ex-wife and daughter and being told where to go, George goes to see his former colleagues and is offered work driving high-class call girl Simone (Cathy Tyson – The Serpent & The Rainbow) from job to job. Sounds easy but George’s rough, wide-boy charm and Simone’s more elegant manner initially causes the two to clash, until »
- Gary Collinson
With Carol Reed's The Third Man (1949) now screening in New York, London and other cities, the Independent has posted Martin Scorsese's thoughts on the classic—and on Reed, "a wonderful film artist." At Hyperallergic, John Yau writes about collages by John Ashbery and Guy Maddin. Curator Ed Halter considers the films of William Klein. Calum Marsh previews the Vittorio De Sica retrospective in Toronto. This week, London's Close-Up will re-open with a series of six films by John Cassavetes. And in the London Review of Books, Michael Wood writes about Bob Hoskins in John Mackenzie's The Long Good Friday. » - David Hudson »
“Roger, darling. I want you to know I love you. I’ve loved you more than any woman’s ever loved a rabbit. “
Who Framed Roger Rabbit screens midnights this weekend (July 3rd and 4th) at The Tivoli Theater as part of their ‘Reel Late at The Tivoli’ Midnight Series. It will also screen at 10am Saturday July 4th
Only someone with a heart of stone can’t love Who Framed Roger Rabbit, a classic mix from 1988 of live-action and animation which united Disney’s classic characters with the Looney Toons.
In an alternative version of 1947 humans and cartoon characters (Toons) live together in Hollywood. The Toons have their own home, Toontown, but there star in live-action films and can do almost anything. Hard-boiled, heavy drinking Private Detective Eddie Valiant (Bob Hoskins), whose brother was murdered by a Toon, is assigned a case by a movie studio to take incriminating »
- Tom Stockman
I interviewed Pierce Brosnan in conjunction with his third outing as James Bond, in Michael Apted's The World Is Not Enough, in 1999. Brosnan was alternately charming, erudite, thoughtful and intense during our two hour chat. His native intelligence shone through it all, as did a sense of decency which many people seem to acquire after enduring and surviving hardship in their formative years.
Bonding With Brosnan
There are several dangers in becoming a cultural icon, not the least of which is the stigma that your public will forever keep you imprisoned in the mold of your iconography, allowing the recipient a privileged, if imprisoned, existence, particularly if that person is an artist. Sean Connery faced just such a dilemma during the height of James Bond-mania in the mid-60's. A serious actor, Connery desperately wanted to break out of the action hero mold that was British Superspy James Bond, »
- The Hollywood Interview.com
With Jurassic World now officially the fastest movie to reach the $1 billion mark (in just thirteen days!), it seems as though the world has gone back to 1993 and dino-mania is running wild once again.
To celebrate the success of the movie, we’ve looked back through the history books to bring you five things you may not know about the Jurassic Park franchise.
Harrison Ford has always had a great working relationship with Steven Spielberg and his partner in crime George Lucas. Not only was he the star of Spielberg’s ode to adventure serials of the 1930s and 40s, Raiders of the Lost Ark and its subsequent Indiana Jones sequels, but he was also featured in American Graffiti and the Star Wars trilogy, the products of George Lucas. »
- Luke Owen
“What I’m looking for is someone who can contribute to what England has given to the world: culture, sophistication, genius – a little bit more than an ’ot dog, know what I mean?” John Mackenzie’s classic British thriller, from a rip-roaring script by Barrie Keeffe, nearly went straight to TV and only ended up in cinemas thanks to the intervention of George Harrison’s HandMade Films. Today it stands as a prophetic classic, as groundbreaking as Get Carter, as quotable as Withnail & I (“Shut up you long streak of paralysed piss”).
Bob Hoskins and Helen Mirren are magnificent as the lord and lady of their underworld manor, attempting to develop London Docklands in a pre-Canary Wharf world, caught between American investors and Ira bombs. Phil Meheux »
- Mark Kermode, Observer film critic
“This country’s a worse risk than Cuba! It’s a banana republic!” That is how Britain is brusquely described in the classic Brit gangster melodrama from 1980, now on rerelease, written by Barrie Keeffe and directed by John Mackenzie. It features a criminal property developer in trouble with rich Americans and the Ira. (A modern-day remake would turn them into Russians and Islamic State.) The film has dated a bit, but it’s surprising how very cleverly it intuits the property boom of London in 2015, and its yearning to be at the centre of a globalised economy, while at the same time absorbing both 70s drear and 80s aspiration. Bob Hoskins (below) is East End geezer Harold Shand – pop-eyed, nervy and insecure about his imminent big »
- Peter Bradshaw
The classic thriller predicted the rise of Thatcherism and the transformation of London’s Docklands into an area of unbridled commerce. For the re-release of the film, I revisited the streets where mobsters once ran wild
At the start of The Long Good Friday, Harold Shand flew in on Concorde. Shand was old-school: a London ganglord played by Bob Hoskins, back home after a New York business trip to find his empire being gutted.
Now, to revisit Harold’s world, I’m listening to the driverless hum of the Docklands Light Railway (Dlr), gently jolting through east London above the endless juliet balconies of new-build flats. Neither the Dlr nor the flats were here in June 1979, when Hoskins and director John Mackenzie started work on a modestly scaled British crime thriller that would become one of the most darkly momentous films that Britain ever made. So, on another sunlit early summer day, »
- Danny Leigh
The classic gangster thriller is a fitting vision of Thatcher’s Britain, with Bob Hoskins as Harold Shand, the quotable cockney mobster who loses it all
“For 10 years we’ve had peace, and now there’s been an Eruption!”
Oh, Harold Shand and his best-laid plans. The East End gangster kingpin is a true spirit-of-the-blitz Little Englander, “a businessman with a sense of history, and also a Londoner”, seeking to shift his thriving criminal empire into legit – or semi-legit – business concerns. He’s dependent upon the New York mafia to help him corner the redevelopment of his own youthful stamping grounds, east London’s Docklands, with a view toward cashing in on a mooted 1988 London Olympics.
Continue reading »
- John Patterson
Director: John Mackenzie
Running Time: 116 minutes
Last year we lost the brilliant Bob Hoskins to the void. The British actor known for Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Mermaids, Hook and Super Mario Bros was sadly lost to Pneumonia. Whilst better known for these big budget studio movies Hoskins is beloved by many in the UK for his turns in Mona Lisa and The Long Good Friday, and though he may be sorely missed both of these gems are getting the special edition treatment this year. We may still have a little while to wait for Mona Lisa but as of Monday 4th May you can own anniversary edition of The Long Good Friday.
This isn’t just an old film that has been stuffed onto a disc with a couple of trailers, oh no, Arrow Films have painstakingly overseen a fully film restoration and shifted »
- Kat Smith
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