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Theo Robertson

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3718 reviews in total 
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Everything (2004/II)
Lacks Everything Except Good Performances, 25 May 2015
5/10

A middle aged man called Richard visits a prostitute called Naomi . He doesn't want sex and Naomi is unsure what he does want . Richard visits her again and his visits become more and more frequent

The only real reason I watched this was because it was a relatively old film from just over ten years ago starring Ray Winstone , an actor who no matter what he appears in always seems to be playing a London geezer called Ray Winstone but the guy is one of the most likable actors in Britain and if he was reading out his shopping list I'd still watch him

EVERYTHING is written and directed by Richard Hawkins and this was his debut feature and since then hasn't made another feature . It's hardly surprising because this type of film , a sort of cross between plot less realist cinema and grief porn was and still is churned out by British independent cinema and there's nothing to really set it out from this type of very limited market and has that sort of uncinematic feel that goes with the territory . . In fact in many ways it feels like a slightly more gritty version of EASTENDERS with a couple of characters sitting in a room getting more and more miserable and angry at the world . To be fair both Winstone and Jan Graveson are very good in their roles of Richard and Naomi but apart from that I can barely remember anything about it having just seen it

No Worries Because War Is So Sexy, 25 May 2015
4/10

I can see the demographic audience for this was fourteen . Not the age fourteen but an IQ of fourteen . Worse than that it was obviously made by a production team with a combined IQ of possibly more than fourteen . Take away the hairdressers and the people who worked in the make up section and one worries how low the mean average IQ of the production team then might be ? No worries mate ? A pity no one worried too much about the screenplay and the finished product

I came in to this expecting an Aussie version of RED DAWN and this is exactly what it is . It's probably no worse than the two Hollywood versions . Very unforgivable then that it's no better than either of those two American films because the RED DAWN movies seriously lacked any type of internal logic and were full of implausibilities . The first version had the full might of the Soviet Union and its European and Latin American allies invade America . Not very convincing but you've got to view it in the right wing spirit of the age . The remake made even less sense with an invasion by North Korea which couldn't possibly have the logistical means for such an endeavour . To be fair to TWTWB a Chinese invasion of Australia might be feasible but the way the story is developed nothing makes much sense Take the early opening sequence where the teens decide to go in to the countryside for a few days then come back to town only to find there country has been invaded and all the townsfolk have been rounded up by the nasty Asiatic commies . Would it not have been possible on their way back to town they might have bumped in to people fleeing the invasion ? The invasion just suddenly happens and the time frame doesn't hold up to any scrutiny when given any type of thought but this isn't a film you're supposed to think about . From then on the teens vow to overthrow these nasty reds

Now I don't know about you but I've always thought war was supposed to be a nasty business . Here however it looks like a lot of fun . Within a short space of time our noble heroine Ellie takes out a bunch of dastardly invaders by blowing them up via a quad-bike . It's at this point you realise you're watching a strange amalgam of MACGYVER meets a tampon commercial meets a teen soap . . The great thing about wars is that parents can't tell you what to do anymore because they've been murdered or interned by the invaders , you get to blow things up and kill people of a different ethnicity and cultural background but that's not racist if you've got a stereotypical Asiatic teen in your group . Best of all if one of the bad guys shoots you don't really feel it . No worries . There is a downside of course and that is you can't attend bars or discos but who'd want to if you're surrounded by the hottest teens in Australia . The invaders probably did everyone a favour by interning all the ugly and old people of Australia and suddenly they don't seem that bad

It's interesting that the remake of RED DAWN originally had the USA being invaded by the Chinese but the producers changed this when they discovered Western films are very popular in China hence the baddies became North Koreans . We see the same sort of moral cowardice where the invaders are obviously Oriental , obviously communistic via their proclamations of coming to share their neighbours resources and obviously don't want to state they're Chinese in case it interferes with the film's marketing campaign in China . Maybe the producers missed an opportunity by saying it's the Japanese who invaded them ? It wouldn't have made much sense , but if you notice anything about this movie that makes sense please tell me what scene this appeared in because I think I missed it ? There is a scene that alludes to being profound where Ellie sees a painting where Redcoats meet a bunch of Aboriginals and the implication is that while colonising Australia was once seen as a good thing it asks you to confront your prejudices as to why invasion followed by cultural genocide can ever be viewed as good . This is done via a film where the heroes are stunningly attractive and the film seems to be preaching a message that it's okay to kill people if you're good looking and the other side aren't . You're pretty ? No worries mate

Big Game (2014)
2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
Not What You're Probably Expecting, 25 May 2015
5/10

The President of the United States survives Air Force One getting shot down over Finland . Finding himself in the remote Finnish snow lands he has an ally in the shape of a young local boy but is this enough to save him from his pursuers ?

I vaguely recall the local buses carrying posters on their side promoting BIG GAME along with the occasional internet trailer . Samuel L Jackson runs around with a big gun . Hey this might be funky fun with its tongue firmly in cheek as Sam blows away the bad guys while making one liners . I almost feel sorry for the baddies in advance and what an entertaining - though disposable - film that might have been . Unfortunately we get an entirely different film altogether

What we have with BIG GAME is effectively a mix of a Walt Disney movie meets a foreign language film . At points the film connects with Hollywood action thrillers such as CLIFFHANGER and that the John Carpenter film where Snake Plisken saves the President in a future NYC . This is problematic because while briefly reminding you of these films it also reminds you of how much superior and focused they are unlike this one .BIG GAME is unable to make up its mind what type of film it is . Some of the violence is a little bit nasty which jars that this is a children's movie . There's also some ridiculous plot contrivances and the several different tones pulling about means you've got a confused movie . I can understand Sammy boy wanting to go on a Winter holiday to Northern Europe but at least if it was made by a Hollywood studio we'd get a star vehicle which isn't really what we've got with BIG GAME which has been unsurprisingly ignored at the box office

Let's Have A Sequel About The Fans Who Like Pretend Celebs, 25 May 2015
6/10

Ah fame . Something everyone is conditioned in to wanting become , I have met several famous people . Dappy and Fazer from N-Dubz borrowed a lighter from me and never saw the lighter again . If I ever see either again it'll be too soon and thankfully the pop charts have as missed them as much as I do . I had Alex Salmond walk past me one time , I got in to an argument with Nick Broomfield once and one time I accidentally literally bumped in to the Hibernian FC team of 2006 as they returned from training . That's probably it as far as famous people I met . I would like to be famous myself as a type of warrior poet , a hybrid between Lord Byron , George Orwell and Leon Trotsky . Until then my cerebral statements will have to be confined to this website .

This documentary by Jason Kovacsev and Matt Mamula revolves around people who resemble real life superstars on a physical level and how they make a living out of it . I can understand the appeal of this to an extent and do remember an interview in a lads mag many years ago with interviews with tribute bands like The Australian Pink Floyd and The Joshua Trio and the surprising amount of money that can be made playing gigs . It's interesting many people seen here such as Chris America who does gigs as an all era Madonna and Betty Atchinson does the same as Lady Gaga and if there's money to be made go for it . However much of this documentary reminded me of the documentary TREKKERS from a few years back where we seem to be invited to laugh at the subjects rather than laugh with them . I'm thinking most especially of John Allen who looks like a present day Sean Connery but sadly can't do the voice . John try speaking as though you've got an terrible abscess while having a fatal stroke , it's not that difficult . As for people appearing as Presidents of the USA well that strikes me as wanting to be a Gary Glitter or Jimmy Savile look-a-like

One thing I was puzzled by is the genuine adulation these dopplegangers receive . Now I can understand the appeal of wanting to be photographed with beautiful woman ( Check my avatar for absolute proof) and Ms America and Ms Atchinson drop heavy hints that their partners really enjoy being with a sexy superstar singer . I won't draw you a diagram but you know what I'm saying here guys . What I find strange is the general public being with these look-a-likes actually paying for autographs and having their pictures taken with these "superstars" . Maybe there's another documentary coming from the same production team as to why people are obsessed with fame on even the most vague and abstract level ?

12 out of 21 people found the following review useful:
Let's See A Bit More Imagination, 25 May 2015
6/10

Just when you thought Hollywood had remade every single horror movie you've ever seen they shock you - by remaking a horror film you'd almost forgotten about . To be fair to the Studios they do occasionally remake a film that if not superior to the original at least can claim to be totally different to its source . Remember THE FLY and THE THING from the 1980s ? So a film remade over 30 years after the original movie should in theory be different from the original . Unfortunately with this remake of the fondly remembered POLTERGIEST originality isn't in abundance

Eureka , I've got it ! Do you know the difference between a good remake and a bad remake ? With a good remake you've got something that shares the basic premise of something else but goes in a totally different direction . I'm thinking of the 1978 version of INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS which considering the subject matter gave me many sleepless nights . With a bad remake you've got something that constantly apes the original with very little embellishment and this would include ... well basically every single horror remake of the last few years

With POLTERGIEST 2015 you can see the producers wanting to go their own way very slightly but thinking this might be a bad idea for some reason . This version isn't so much a shot for shot remake , but more of restructuring of the original . Most of what you remember from the Tobe Hooper/ Steven Spielberg 1982 movie takes place here , just not in the same running order as you remember . To be fair we do get a show stopping turn from Jared Harris as a Catholic priest with an impressive Irish accent but apart from that there's little beyond the rudimentary . It should also be remembered that the 1982 film was made before CGI was invented , in other words the special effects back then might not hold up all that well when viewed today but at least you could appreciate all the hard work the special effects crew put in to the production . Here however most of the effects will have been done with CGI , and slightly obvious CGI . I guess Hollywood has lost a lot of imagination over the decades ?

Parallels (2015)
TV Competition Is Obviously Tough, 25 May 2015
6/10

This originated as a pilot to a TV show . Apparently Fox turned it down which means it has an ending that is vaguely unsatisfying and I guess the negative views are from people who are unaware of PARALLELS genesis . There's actually no shame in not getting a full length TV series because American television is on a crest of a wave and has been for the last couple of years . I never watch American shows but there's never a long gap before I get another request from Bob The Moo telling me he's got the latest DVD collection of a stateside show he wants me to review or social media is in meltdown about this show or that from America . From the outside looking in these viewers mirror the lifestyles of addicts . I'll just stick to DOCTOR WHO you thank you

Some people have compared this to an American version of DOCTOR WHO . I can understand where they're coming from but the comparison isn't all that accurate . I did think it owed slightly more to the 1960s show THE TIME TUNNEL but again it's not really an accurate comparison . It does have an idiosyncratic feel as the group of four humans find themselves coming in to a couple of alternative Earth scenarios and I did think this had great potential . Imagine for example an alternative universe where life does exist on other planets and an alien race decides to invade ? Sounds good ? I thought so too . It was also nice to see some mild swearing used . Not quite HBO but thankfully not something rabidly family friendly either and certainly better than almost anything being produced by the SyFy channel

7 out of 14 people found the following review useful:
What's Up With Disney ?, 25 May 2015
5/10

What's up with Disney these days ? I think the first film I remember seeing at the cine was 20,000 LEAGUES UNDER THE SEA . If you have someone waging a one man war against humanity while taking on a giant squid it does tend to sticjk out in the young and vivid memory , The last Disney film I saw was the recent version of Cinderella which didn't impress me much and TOMORROWLAND continues in the same vein

Effectively TOMORROWLAND is a run around featuring a young teen trying to find an important figure who has a secret invention and there's dangerous obstacles in the way . It's moderately successful in what it does but unfortunately like Cinderella it suffers heavily from an intrusive musical score that literally batters the audience over the head and tries to tell how they should be feeling in each and every scene . Again it counters the fundamentals of storytelling in "Show don't tell" and when you've got the soundtrack trying to elicit emotion out of the audience this has to be seen as a major blunder

The cast are a mixed bunch . Despite having well known faces like George Clooney and Hugh Laurie it's the young cast who carry the story . Britt Robertson makes an okay heroine but isn't much more than okay and I'm afraid Reffey assidy is rather irritating . In fact the whole film is rather irritating and it's a shame the Disney Studio hasn't come out with better films recently

Better Than I Expected, 25 May 2015
7/10

Dave is a London gangster who works for his uncle Jimmy . After his friend Tariq goes missing Dave's troubles are only just beginning as he becomes more and more reliant on cocaine and alcohol and finds he can no longer trust anyone

An unknown British independent film featuring a backdrop of gangland crime and instinctively I only watched it due to misguided jingoistic reasons of watching a Brit flick , In other words I knew in advance I wasn't going to enjoy it and considering it had no big names and a look of a student film it was going to be a waste of almost two hours

After seeing SNOW IN PARADISE one instinct that was confirmed is that it's not an "enjoyable" film . However that doesn't mean it's a bad film , in fact all things considered that most of the production team are inexperienced as are the cast this is a very well made film indeed . It's just that the tone is extremely bleak and nihilistic and while it's a film that shows the power of redemption we have to endure a lot of bad things happening in a depressing manner . In it's favour it is very compelling and much of this is down to the performance of Frederick Schimdt as Dave , an actor I'd never heard of prior to this film but look forward to seeing more of in the future . Perhaps due to Schimdt's obscurity I was never aware of an actor playing a role and was able to buy in to a gangster heading towards self inflicted total destruction

This is director Andrew Hulme's debut after spending several years working as an editor . Most of his work in SNOW IN PARADISE is surprisingly effective and achieves this via composer Kevin Pollard's constant and brooding musical score which adds a lot of heavy mood to scenes but unfortunately also tends to drown out the dialogue in some scenes due to a poor sound mix . Apart from that everyone involved in the film can feel some pride in making a hard hitting drama on a low budget

2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Let's Hope It Is The Final Sequence, 25 May 2015
2/10

Bill Boss the warder of a tough maximum security prison watches the European art house black comedy films involving the human centipedes and invites the films director Tom Six to see how viable this would be in real life

I can't say I was a massive fan of the original HC . I missed out on the sequel and only watched this one because I had the opportunity of seeing it free and contains the bizarre casting of Eric Roberts and former porn star Bree Olson. On top of all that there seemed to be a meta-fictional aspect of director Tom Six playing himself and the trailer looked good . What's wrong with investing a couple of hours in blackly comical horror ?

Well to be fair the trailer is accurate in a way of "Meglomaniac abuses power and really pushes the boat out" but the execution is dreadful . Dieter Laser looks totally camp in the trailer as Bill Boss and while the performance is bearable in a two minute trailer it's not in a feature length film . I can understand that he's not supposed to be taken seriously for a moment but that's not really the point as he shouts , squeals and uses lots and lots of swear words while inflicting violence on people . It's not satire we're watching but absolute farce and Laser becomes painfully irritating , so much so that you find yourself looking forward to Eric Roberts appearing if only to see a calm and reserved performance . Yes chaps you read that right - Eric Roberts probably gives the most calm , rational and realistic acting performance in the entire movie . I suppose you could also give Tom Six a back handed compliment in making a sequel that is a billion light years removed from the original movie but nothing about it really works and in cinematic terms it feels like a juvenile delinquent who wants to shock the adult world but just ends up looking silly . Take this insult:

"Not even the corpse of a spastic would want you . Now f--k off"

That's probably the most witty line in the film and I've come out with funnier compliments throughout my entire life which hopefully says more about THE HUMAN CENTIPEDE III than it says about me

The Fog (2005)
No Better Or Worse Than The Other Horror Remakes, 25 May 2015
5/10

I remember John Carpenter's 1980 film THE FOG but only very vaguely so looked up my review of the 1980 version where I wrote that it was a moody and atmospheric horror . I can see what the producers of this remake were trying to do and that is recreate the atmosphere of the original and even though they try there seems to be something missing . I'm not saying this is a great film and by doing a fairly straight remake it shows signs of laziness on the part of the studio but it probably deserves a slightly higher average rating of 3.6

Perhaps the main problem is the casting . Tom Welling , Selma Blair and Maggie Grace ? A little bit too pretty and young compare them with the cast of the original who did tend to look like "real people" for a better phrase and were of a wider age demographic . Ah I think I might have hit the nail on he head . This remake tries to pander to the teen demographic where a senior citizen is anyone on the wrong side of 30 . There's also a bit more incidents involved almost as though the studio think teens will be bored senseless if nothing much is happening which means everything is a bit clichéd . Perhaps worst of all the film feels the need to explain the ending and how it ties in with the rest of the narrative where as the original is left open ended and ambiguous and if a film needs to spoon feed the audience information in a clumsy way this can only be seen as a failure . As I said it's not a great film but probably no worse than the other vapid and insipid remakes we've seen over the last ten years


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