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Watched Films (a lot) and even enjoyed some of them...
Excellent Fun - Some spoilers!
So, Battleship! Hmm what to say, I went into the movie with lowish expectations, I was expecting a transformers redux, Michael Bay style movie. And that is exactly what I got, but better. I often find these big budget special effect movies very over the top, full of cheesy lines, unbelievable and I know it is suppose to be fun, but often the mix just irks me, but this movie is a lot of fun, yes, there is a large amount of coincidence that moves the story along, and I would have liked to know more about the motives of the Aliens, but it was a fairly intelligent film, well acted, excellent explosions and action and when the remaining crew board the "battleship" at the end of the movie I genuinely felt like I wanted them to succeed. The film was lacking the "Go USA" that many of these films have and I iced the fact that it was teamwork with the Japanese that made the film work. The scene after the credits is worth sticking around for too. All in all, very good, excellent fun, nothing too serious and it won't win a lot of Oscars, but excellent entertainment and I give it an 8/10
Nim's Island (2008)
My daughter and I loved it
I missed this film at the cinema and only caught it by surprise as we were flicking through the movie channel one Saturday morning and we absolutely fell in love with it. It is not the best film ever but it has heart, humour some reasonably strong performances and memorable characters. What else could a Saturday morning film with the kids need? The story begins with a seemingly idyllic relationship between a father and daughter living on a desert island that they have adapted to suit their lifestyle perfectly. We are then introduced to Jodie Foster who charms as an agoraphobic writer who's only friend seems to be the hero in her books who appears throughout the film but only in her mind. The story develops at a good pace that kept us entertained and quickly Jodie Fosters character is pushed way beyond her comfort zone and "Nim", beautifully played by Abigail Breslin enters her story arc surviving alone. The communication between the characters is well done and whilst not entirely believable it does produce a good honest and fun story.
Quantum of Solace (2008)
OK, this is my first review so take it easy on me, there may be spoilers ahead.
Quantum of Solace begins as all Bond films should, with a fast paced action sequence, it is a (necessary) shame the Aston gets so badly damaged as it is a beautiful car but the action sequence is fantastic, fast paced and thrilling. It also ends with a real twist which links this to Casino Royale and sets the scene for the rest of the film to play out in. I have read other comments about the visible CGI, but to be honest, I couldn't see it and have to say I was quite out of breath by the time Bond stopped his car. I missed the usual opening of the bond eye.
Overall the story is fast paced but makes sense, you can see the logic to Bonds actions. There are some quirky one liners and although you can see that this film borrows from Bourne, it is most definitely a Bond film. All the ingredients (except Q and money-penny) are there. There are fantastic locations, beautiful women, lots of violence and killing, plot twists, double agents, misdirection and a great end sequence in a remote base... what more could you want!! (ok, perhaps some cool gadgets would be nice)
Judi Dench is fantastic as always and you can really feel the internal struggle as she tries to support and help Bond but doesn't quite understand why he is going so rouge. I feel that if Bond had taken 10 minutes out to explain things M would have been far more supportive, but as criticisms go, this is minor. The rest of the supporting cast are also great, big shout out to "Fields" and Mathieu Amalric who both stood out and of course there is Daniel Craig, who really seems to have settled into the role and I think is one of the best bonds ever!! Again, other reviews have criticised his coldness but I think he is still a bit of a "blunt instrument" and s still learning. I think much of the "cold" comments relate to the way Bond disposed of a certain "friend". But in the situation, he really had no choice and the coldness of his actions are balanced by the warmth of his cradling his friend as he dies. I think Bond id very Human. The film also deals with the internal struggle within Bond, he never sleeps, drinks a lot and is looking for closure from what happened to Vesper in the last film. I think he gets it and in a way, the actions and drive of Olga Kurylenko allows bond his own closure. We will see in the next film a much more balanced character who is at ease with who he is.
The villain, Mr Greene, is scary in so much as he is normal and completely based in reality. I could totally get the fact that in the future water is going to be an extremely valuable commodity and whoever controls it will have the power. The Quantum organisation (consider SPECTRE rebooted) is using its brains and vast network to ensure that its people will have power in the future.
Anyway, as a bond film and an action film, I loved it. *****
The Bourne Ultimatum (2007)
The worst of the Trilogy but still a good film
**POSSIBLE SPOILERS** Action, Action, Action. One amazing set piece after another absolutely terrific.... or so I thought. I actually missed an intelligent storyline, I didn't really get the motives of continuing to chase Bourne following the deaths of Abbott and Conklin. The story was out there and I clearly felt that at the end of Supremacy he was getting his memory back and was at a place where he could move forward.
The first two films were intelligent and combined great action with a feeling that to watch the films and understand, you got a sense of how the intelligence service really worked. This last film whilst exciting and I was really on the edge of my seat at times, just lacked the coherence of the others and I really feel that by creating a more believable plot and not just rehashing supremacy the film could have been so much better!!
The Terminal (2004)
...although I should not have been surprised, Spielberg and Hanks, had greatness written all over it. But I got suckered into a lot of the bad press around the film and suppose I judged it before I had watched it. Anyway, I have now watched it and I liked it.
I thought the first half of the film was absolutely fantastic, the humor, the acting, the character development - they were all good. I thought the second half of the film suffered a little from becoming a bit over emotional, the love story seemed out of sorts and the way the entire airport staff seemed to know every thing about everyone else was a bit far fetched, I worked in an airport for many years and knew virtually no-one from outside the people I worked with on a daily basis, but maybe that's just me! But I forgave the film these slight nuances and allowed myself to enjoy it. I don't think Hanks or Spielberg will win any more Oscars, but it was a very enjoyable way to spend a couple of hours on a Sunday night!!
Bad Boys II (2003)
Exactly What it says on the tin
I liked this Movie a lot. It has humour and some great action sequences. A reasonably complex plot and lots of laughs and explosions. What more could one want from a film like this. The car chase with the car transporter was on a par with those in Matrix reloaded and T3 and there is a lot more than that. I liked the banter between Will Smith and Martin Lawrence and just generally watched the whole film with a big smile.
It is not going to win any oscars and it does not make my top 10 movies, but I did like it and admired the scale of it all. The whole end bit in Cuba... it is on a par with any action film I have seen. 9/10
I know I am in a minority but I did not think this was a truly great film. It was good and I liked it but not great. I thought the story was painfully predictable and just could not get use to the guy playing Frodo. He just seemed so weak, there was nothing about the character that made me care about him. I thought Ian Holm did an excellent job as Bilbo and perhaps that was the problem. Frodo compared to Bilbo was pretty pathetic!!!
The special effects are very good, and Andy Serkis who did the gollum bit deserves applaud but I recently watched Braveheart again and The Last Samurai and I thought the battle scenes in those films were far better. OK, they were not on such a grand scale, but they are more "realistic". Now, I know this is a fantasy film and was aimed at a much younger audience but I preferred the more realistic battles in the films already mentioned. To see "orlando" sliding all over that big battle elephant thing just looked poor.
But anyway, no doubt the film will win a whole host of oscars and other accolades. I just wonder if it will still be so revered in years to come?
There are a lot of comments here saying "why?" and "what is the point?" Well, I will tell you. I had not seen the original and despite it being a "classic" I had no desire to see it. I am not a fan of sixties style black and white films. I just don't like the style. I was the same with rebel without a cause, a great film, but I just found it lacking by todays standards.
Anyway, When the film came out in 1998, I heard all the awful reviews and avoided it. partly because I heard it was the same as the 60's version and partly because of the bad reviews. But I saw it last night and I enjoyed it. It is a worthwhile film to see. OK, so the performances may not be as good as the 1960 film but how am I to know, I have not seen the 1960 film. As a standalone film, I thought it was really good. I felt that Norman was very creepy, I liked seeing the paranoia grow in the Anne Heche character and because I did not know what happened, I was on the edge of my seat all the way through it.
Perhaps I should have watched the original and perhaps I should be more openminded to accept the old black and white film, but I didn't. So, I for one am glad they remade this classic as it gave me a chance to watch what I am sure is a truly great film.
So, if you have not seen the original, I would highly recommend this modern piece of classic cinema.
Henry VIII (2003)
East enders meets something even worse...
Performances were not bad and I can forgive the "cockney" accent that the King had, but what is unforgiveble is the fact that the writers concentrated so much on the relationships with "six" wives that they gave almost no attention to the things that made the king great. As a result, Henry came off looking like a weak, confused, sex mad monarch who was guilty of more "back stabbing" than anyone since brutus.
For goodness sake, whilst Henry was on the throne, there was a huge war in France, as well as much more civil unrest in England. The catholic/protestant "debate" was only hinted at. The "token" inclusion of Sean Bean was welcome, all be it far too brief and the failure to show the absolute horrors of what atrocities were comitted in the kings name is an injustice to every english man and woman. These were defining times in our history but were passed off as cheap tricks purely to satisfy the kings lust for women.
very disatisfied. 4/10
Finding Nemo (2003)
Not as good as Monsters Inc.
Very good film, great animation blah blah blah, just missing the great comedy and imagination that was found in Monsters Inc/toy story et al.
The film fell into cliche's. Ellen was great as Dory and I loved the seagulls and there are a few great comedy moments. Story is basic but effective... I guess i was just spoilt by monsters and wanted more of the same, but without greats such as John Goodman and Billy Crystal, I just felt this was a little bit flat.