Film Review: Sherlock Gnomes

Posted on by 5WC in Film

I want to say that I was dragged, kicking and screaming to see Sherlock Gnomes. But that wouldn’t be true. I want to claim how the involvement of Emily Blunt was enough to draw more than just a passing interest, but again, that would be a lie. I’m sure, however, that Blunt’s involvement was enough to get me intrigued but ultimately, and truthfully, I went to see it because I’d seen everything else and fancied a trip to the cinema!

Sherlock Gnomes is the follow up to Gnomeo & Juliet, a film I haven’t seen., and so, while the trailer seemed honest and amusing enough what the final film would be like, the tone and maturity of its humour and tale, was a complete unknown. Without any prior reference point, what I was letting myself in for could be absolutely anything. Read more

Film Review: Avengers Infinity War

Posted on by 5WC in Film

I sit in this strange middle ground when it comes to “comic book” movies. I never grew up reading comics and I’ve never really been mad on the films. I watched the bric-a-brac stories – Michael Keaton as Batman, Andrew Garfield as Spiderman, Patrick Stewart as Charles Xavier in X-Men – but when Marvel reinvented itself, unleashing the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), I just let things drift me by. I just couldn’t get excited by it all.

This means that as the behemoth of the MCU gathered momentum I was always one step behind. I didn’t bother with their early films, and I feel I should admit I’ve never seen Ironman. As time has progressed I’ve remained almost blasé about them, and the MCU. I really wouldn’t call myself a fan. I don’t really know much about the characters or their stories, but for some reason, that doesn’t stop me from going to see them on the big screen, I’m always swayed by the marketing machine. Read more

Film Review: Rampage

Posted on by 5WC in Film

I really don’t know why I wanted to see Rampage. Every time I’d seen the trailer for it, I had come away thinking it was just a throwaway popcorn fodder film. After all, when you combine Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson with a big CGI monkey and huge petrol-fuelled explosions, you’re never going to set the bar at awards season levels of expectation. And yet, there was a huge advertising poster for the film in the lobby of my local multiplex – a static image that did nothing but reinforce the tone of the trailer – but it appealed to me somehow, it made something click inside my mind. It screamed “silly explosive fun” and left me longing to see the film.

As expected, Rampage is a bad film. I’d even go as far as to say that for large parts of it I just sat there thinking it’s a shame that we live in a world where people will throw vast sums of money – an estimated $120million – to create a film so implausible silly and stupid, when there are hundreds of projects and stories that could be have been funded instead, and provided a far better 107minutes of entertainment I’m sure. Read more

Film Review: A Quiet Place

Posted on by 5WC in Film

I don’t watch many horror films. It’s a genre that has never really appealed to me because I find it’s often too polarised in its construction to be really entertaining. Films seem to forget the need for a plot and become dominated by the single idea of trying to scare you. Boringly plodding along, hanging everything on either the monotony of “quiet, quiet, BANG” suspense or shockingly repulsive over the top gore. Both of which cause me to mentally withdraw.

What does work for me, however, is tension. I like horror when it doesn’t conform. When it builds and builds and builds, driving you to the edge of your seat because you can’t face the thought of what may happen next. Get rid of the gore, get rid of the clichéd scare tactics, and play with the unknown. Build emotional naivety into a twisting, real story and you can easily keep me awake at night. It’s just that too few films have the courage to stick with it and not shout “BANG” just as I’m beginning to panic. Read more

Film Review: Love, Simon

Posted on by 5WC in Film

There is a predictability to the film industry that is as regular and reassuring as clockwork. You can guarantee that each year will start off with hard-hitting stories that are baiting the upcoming awards season. This will be followed up by school holidays littered with CGI comic book adventures before Christmas arrives with a huge blockbuster release. All padded out and supported by a foundation of franchise follow-ups and happy-go-lucky tales of growing old (dis)gracefully staring the elder statesmen of Hollywood.

You can also be sure that the high school uniforms will out in force. Every year, the already flooded genre of “American Teenage Coming of Age Tales” will get reworked to reflect the changing world and attitudes we now inhabit. Whether it’s through the dark seriousness of Cruel Intentions, the introspective search of The Perks Of Being A Wallflower or just the warm plagiarism of She’s All That – to name just three – the genre has been providing comedic examination and explanation, to reassure and guide, ever since, this one time, at band camp… Read more

My 5 Worst Films Of 2015 – A review of the Year, Part 1

Posted on by 5WC in Film
My 5 Worst Films Of 2015 - Header

While I may not have watched anything like the number of films during 2015 that I did during 2014 (it’s still an impressive 134 so far), the year has produced a lot of memorable moments for both good and bad reasons. As I did last year it seems, as Christmas fades into memory and you start to hear people bemoaning “I can’t believe it’s 2016 already, that year flew by”, only right to look back over the best and worst films the year had to offer.

So, starting with the worst and, in no particular order: Read more

Film Review: The Pursuit Of Happyness

Posted on by 5WC in Film

I still remember seeing the trailer for The Pursuit Of Happyness on the big screen and being completely sucked in to this uplifting sale of hope, dreams and following what’s in your heart. I will forever associate Soar by Christina Aguilera to the movie and I will always remember Will Smith as Chris Gardener ending his pivotal speech “…if you want something go get it. Period.” Overcome, believing, that at that moment, every dream in my head, every desire for my future, was possible, whatever anyone says.

But sadly for every minute of rousing passion and can do self belief that the trailer implies, the end product, the actual movie, just doesn’t live up to the hype its set. The movie is just a let down, too focused on one man’s impossible dream rather than the relationship with his son, and even worse, when you really start to look at its story everything feels a bit too shallow and a bit too vain. It just lacks any real sense of distress or depth. It’s a story that sold you it’s heart only to realise it’s a fake. Read more

Film Review: What We Did On Our Holiday

Posted on by 5WC in Film

It’s a strange situation, I had heard good things about What We Did On Our Holiday and yet having watched the film I can’t for the life of me see where or why this praise was earned. I just found it farcical balderdash and a poor imitation. A side from a few quick one liners dotted sporadically throughout, I struggle to find any redeeming feature.

It was written and directed Andy Hamilton and Guy Jenkin and is obviously their way of attempting to bring the successful formula for Outnumbered, their hit BBC sitcom in which two parents are run ragged by their three ad-libbing children, to the big screen. The problem is though, the formula doesn’t translate without the characters. Firstly because you spend the entire time comparing the characters from one to the other, and secondly, because the story becomes too stretched out, and the madness of a flexible script ends up more distracting and annoying as time goes on. Read more

Film Review: The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas

Posted on by 5WC in Film

The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas has always been something of an enigma to me. I have always been drawn to it whenever I have seen it: sitting on a shelf, in a TV guide, listed on demand. And yet, for one reason or another I have never committed to it.

But last night I was running late and so, faced with an option of either having a late night or simply picking a shorter film. I decided to go with the shorter film option; and with The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas available through the Curzon Home Cinema service, an early night seemed like the perfect reason necessary to finally watch the film that has stalked my life for the last few years. Read more

Film Review: My Name Is Joe

Posted on by 5WC in Film

This is one of those films where from the trailer, from a brief synopsis of the plot, you’d be forgiven for thinking that it’s a movie about nothing at all. That it’s an extended episode of the nations favourite Soap Opera. Just set North of the border. However, there is much, much more to this film than it’s slightly basic, and overly mundane plot would suggest.

Essentially, it tells the story of a recovering alcoholic, trying to build a simple and honest life post drink, while living in a hard, rough neighbourhood of a hard, tough city and the lives he touches and connects to as he progresses on his journey. As I said, it’s not a plot that fills you with much desire or hope that this movie is going to really impress.
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