Reviews written by registered user

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12 reviews in total 
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2 out of 5 people found the following review useful:
Why should I care?, 3 June 2017

It's hard to believe that so many people made this film and yet nobody asked the question "Why cares about this story?".

I don't like having to work too hard trying to figure out the plot or what motivates the characters into action, but after ten minutes I was still asking myself "what's the point of this movie?".

For me the animation was fine. Had the story been a good one then I wouldn't care about how realistic the characters are portrayed - it's a kid's animation so I don't expect it to look lifelike.

But I did wonder about the language. I don't think my 4, 7 and 9 year old kids know what "flailing" means, together with a script and story that seemed a little beyond their reach. Having said that, they all sat and watched the film, happily eating their popcorn and apples and said they enjoyed it. So what do parents know?

An uncomfortable film to watch if you have a moral compass, 28 November 2016

I watched with increasing discomfort as the premise of this film started to unfold. My moral compass kept kicking in and I never managed to suspend my disbelief sufficiently to entirely enjoy the film. Dudley Moore plays Rob Salinger very well. Ann Reinking (Micki) and Amy Irving (Maude) play their parts wonderfully too as the situation turns into a farce. I became intrigued to see how the screenwriters might resolve the plot in a socially acceptable way. The story didn't end how I might have guessed; more of a non-ending really. I hope that intrigues you enough to watch it and find out how you react to this movie. It's probably worth watching to learn something about yourself!

Locke (2013)
1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
One of the best low budget films ever made, 25 September 2014

I was amazed by Sleuth (1973) with only two actors, and by Tape (2001) with only three actors but I've never seen a film with only one actor. That needs a great script and a great actor. This is my type of film and I loved it.

Unfortunately the film suffers from an extremely poor attempt by Tom Hardy to speak English with a Welsh accent. Someone should have given Tom some language tuition. This is an unfortunate consequence of being low budget.

Putting the accent to one side, the film was great in every other respect and I loved the script, acting and photography. I wasn't too keen on the sound, however but I understand that the dialogue needed to sound like it was coming from within a car.

Well done guys. Probably one of the best low budget films ever made!

Noah (2014)
15 out of 27 people found the following review useful:
A nice retelling of the Noah story, 4 August 2014

I watched this movie with my wife and we both enjoyed in enormously. It was a very interesting retelling of the Noah story that brought home some of the anguish of all those involved in this tragic tale of destruction. We were very engaged with the story from the start, which was told sensitively and emotionally, especially towards the end.

I loved Noah's version of the Bible creation story and I found all the actors well chosen for their parts. Russell Crowe gives an outstanding performance as Noah. Emma Watson breaks free of her Harry Potter chains to give a credible performance as Ila. One of the most touching scenes towards the end of the film involves these two actors.

The film is slow paced, which I love, and the storytelling by Darren Aronofsky is just my cup of tea.

I cautiously watched this film on Amazon Prime because I wasn't sure if I would like it. Now that I've seen the film then I will definitely buy it on Blu-ray and it will be added to my special reserve of top-notch films that I will love to watch again in years to come.

My enjoyment of this film was only marred by having read so many negative reviews. As I watched it then I kept thinking of some of the comments I had read. I simply cannot fathom how this film has created so much negative criticism. I feel so sorry for the director and all the actors and technicians who put so much effort into making this film the success that it really is.

This film more than any other proves to me that I cannot accept the judgement of others when evaluating a film; I am so glad I ignored the reviews and experienced the film for myself.

3 out of 5 people found the following review useful:
Well told story about a controversial subject, 13 April 2010

Well told story (sorry, but I do suspend my disbelief whenever watching dramas) that's very well dramatised, about the controversial subject of celibacy among the priesthood of the Catholic church. You get a bit of a history lesson about the subject too. No doubt this film falls into the category of a film with a "message" to the Church itself, but that doesn't detract in any way from the entertainment value of the story if you're not Catholic and don't have an axe to grind about this subject.

Well acted, beautifully filmed and thoroughly entertaining - what more do I need? What's more, no big name actors, so you can concentrate and enjoy the story for what it is.

Faintheart (2008)
7 out of 8 people found the following review useful:
Another British Marketing Disaster!!, 4 April 2010

This is the second British comedy I've seen recently that I'd never heard of until a friend recommended it to me (the other one is "Blow Dry"). I'm completely perplexed. The filmmakers went to all this trouble to get a brilliant script and cast with matching performances and then what? - they forgot to tell the UK audience that it exist?! Also, it was never marketed outside the UK (although it seems to have had a Swedish premiere according to IMDb Pro), no doubt losing millions in the process!

It's really, really disheartening to all filmmakers everywhere to think that you can get everything right and still get it so wrong. If anyone knows the inside story on what happened (and to "Blow Dry" for that matter) then please let me know.

In the meantime, this goes straight into my private hoard of great comedies that I keep locked in my study, away from prying eyes, for those rainy days! :-)

7 out of 9 people found the following review useful:
Two great actors, 16 June 2009

You can really feel the tension and truth in this film. What a relief Hoffman and Thompson - an unlikely couple - should get together with this great script to produce an emotional roller-coaster. Thank you both. This really is my kind of film.

Having walked out of Terminator Salvation after an hour, for obvious reasons (okay, to spell it out: lack of plot and senseless action sequences), I was once again loosing faith in Hollywood with its animation madness. Didn't Dogme95 remind filmmakers about getting back to basics? Well, here's a film that does just that. Boy did this film hurt - especially if you actually have kids or have ever wanted them.

I would say this is the best of Hoffman's films, and a typically great performance from Thompson - who is allowed to really shine in this one. Neither of them are spring chickens but their acting is the reason why we still need experienced actors.

35 out of 71 people found the following review useful:
Another enjoyable and thought-provoking film by Jack Black, 23 February 2008

Looking at the existing comments you might be forgiven for wondering why over 500 people have given this a 10 out of 10 rating. To date, none of those have commented on the movie apart from me.

For me, Jack Black has appeared in three films that have unexpectedly made me think: School of Rock, Shallow Hal and this one. All these films seem to have a genuine sense of fun, particularly where children are involved, yet have a deeper message that lingers as an uncomfortable question in the back of my mind long after the film has ended: School of Rock about the nature of teaching, Shallow Hal about our perception of beauty and Be Kind Rewind about communities and film-making. I have found no answers to any of the questions posed by these films.

I easily managed to suspend my disbelief for two hours and found this movie genuinely funny and touching all at the same time. As a moviemaker myself this film reminded me that great movies are made by people who love them (e.g. Somewhere in Time, The Sting) and they're made for the audience of that time and place. It's not about realism, it's about loving the story. This film reminded me that communities are broken up in the name of progress, which gives the film a rather melancholy feel towards the end. But most of all it reminded me of the fun we have in making short films and the excitement you feel when you see the product of your own efforts.

Great acting by all - without exception. And what a nice touch to rejuvenate the memory of Fats Waller.

A film that grows on you with time, 15 March 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This review contains a spoiler - a summary of the whole plot! I've done this because you're very unlikely to ever see this film since it had such a small initial release:

"Appleseed Lake" is a once leafy, suburban town, inhabited by the narrator of the film, Eddie Freeman (Gregory Bell) and his ex-girlfriend turned mother, Kimberley Freeman (Sharon Gavin). After marrying his father and inheriting everything, she wants Eddie to leave the family home. Eddie's screwed up by events and starts making illegal wine, beer and spirits, aided by thirteen year old Chrissy Winlings (Jodie Wilde) who helps him deliver the booze. A delivery of beer to Dark Robinson (Jamie Scott) results in a meeting at the local "greasy spoon" where Eddie's heartthrob, Andie Farrow (Sally Humphreys), works as a cafe waitress. Following a sequence of soap dialogues, he wimps out of asking Andie for a date, despite encouragement from friends. Dark introduces Eddie to some rich new customers, the Cassidy brothers (Gareth Wilmot, Marc Parry) who need regular deliveries, so Eddie tries to convince the cafe manager to store some of his liquor on the premises. Unfortunately, Andie's brother, Max Farrow (Adrian Wrench), just happens to be visiting his sis - he's a local cop and takes the opportunity to warn Eddie to watch his step. Several more ensemble dialogues later and Eddie finally meets up with his ex, Robin Hudson (Elizabeth Gordon); Eddie takes the blame for their break-up and has mixed feelings for Robin, who leaves insulted and heartbroken. Meanwhile, Chrissy's father, Mr Windlings (Mike McConnel), is misled by Kimberley into thinking that Eddie is hitting on his daughter, for which he beats him up. Eddie limps back to the cafe with his mates and is confronted again my Max, in response to an irate phone call from Mr Windlings. In the end, it's up to Andie to ask Eddie out on a date as he sits by the cafe bins, nursing his wound. Robin is upset and runs off when Eddie announces his date to his friends. He runs after her and they have a heart-to-heart. She asks him to leave town with her but he refuses. Eventually she persuades him to sleep with her for the last time - which they do outside, but don't make love. The following day she gets ready to leave and Eddie goes with Dark and Billy Charles (Nick Washrook) to the Cassidy house to deliver their order. Hot in pursuit, Max ambushes the house. A comic chase ensues in the stately grounds of the Cassidy home, but Walter ends up hitting Clive accidentally with a bottle of wine. Eddie, Dark and Billy make a getaway, only to hear an explosion from the cafe. It turns out that one of the customers, Crazy George (Peter Hearn) blew himself up whilst in the cafe - apparently disappointed when he found there was no Lake in Appleseed! Max is convinced that Eddie has something to do with this until an agonising cry in the distance reveals Walter Cassidy bearing the body of Clive in his arms. Robin leaves Appleseed Lake again, placing her message in a bottle in a tyre swing. Eddie meets Andy in the cafe and kisses her, only to make a fast exit after Robin. He gets as far as the tyre swing and reads her final message to him.

The film cost around £5000 to make and was released only on VCD. It was originally shot in colour Super 8mm stock and telecined at the Pro8mm labs by Giles Musitano, however the final cut was made into a black & white film, which is tolerably grainy. Peter Hearn (director) describes the film as a "black comedy", however if timing and delivery are as important as they say in comedy, then the actors and director don't manage to pull it off. Sally Humphries (Andie), Edmund Dehn (Johnny Boothe) and Elizabeth Gordon (Robin Hudson) stand out as noteworthy actors.

5 out of 13 people found the following review useful:
Tolerable, 16 January 2006

I managed to find a second-hand VHS copy on eBay but to date there's no DVD version. Maybe that speaks for itself. A slightly hammy, poorly researched film, that doesn't even agree with the Christian account of Satanism, let alone the pagan notion of Witchcraft. And not even a Satanist would recognise the rituals conjured up in this film. I get the feeling they made up the rituals as they went along because they're rather obvious and simple-minded i.e. drinking the victims blood from a chalice.

Why is the Egyptian Ankh symbol of eternity scribed around the victims navel? The usual symbol for witches is the pentagram, which in this case would be inverted since this is a Satanist coven.

In terms of sheer entertainment value then I have seen worse films, so probably worth watching is you're curious.

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