Fun full length adaptation of the Grindhouse trailer. It raises an occasional smile but could have been a lot better and it pretty much completely runs out of steam about two thirds of the way through.
Psychological thrillers need to be written with the finest of pens. Subtle lines and marks that lead the viewer towards the inevitable, but unpredictable, conclusion. The Machinist however was written with a crowbar dunked in shit. 20 minutes in and you're fairly sure where the plot is going. 40 minutes in and you're absolutely certain. From that point on it's just a matter of sitting back and watching it happen. It's not a boring film, it's not a bad film but it is a predictable film and by definition you cannot have a predictable thriller. Oh, and the very last scene made me want to put my foot through the tv screen.
Man of Steel
Unlike when he returned a few years ago this new incarnation of the fella with the big S on his chest is actually pitted against someone that can go toe to toe with him. This means that no longer is he limited to lifting a series of increasingly heavy things as a way of showing how super he is the film-makers can actually resort to some gratuitous violence and property damage. And they do! They really, really do.
It's by no means a great movie but I didn't think it was a particularly bad one either. OTT and fun is pretty much all I want out of a superhero movie and this ticked both those boxes.
Men in Black 3
Josh Brolin does a bang on Tommy Lee Jones impression and that's the only good thing I have to say here.
A movie written by Neil Gaiman and directed by Dave McKean was always going to be a pretty enticing prospect for me. I love Gaiman's writing. Gaiman's world is one populated by characters and situations usually more at home in fairytales (the original pre-victorian ones not their crappy watered down versions) and gothic horrors. McKean's art for essentially the same reasons.
All the pre-release hype and interviews (and the extras on the dvd) kept referring to the tiny budget. At the time i thought they were labouring a point but now i know why. Essentially the film consists of lots of static set pieces with the actors reduced to talking their way through the plot instead of being allowed to move around the, visually sumptuous, world that McKean has created. The beauty of Gaiman's writing and McKean's art is the scope and that's still apparent through the use of green screen (for almost the entire movie) which allowed them to build an utterly fantastical reality but which, in turn, stiffled both the actors and ultimately the movie.
Lastly, it is a shame they aimed it at kids as it really would have benefited if they'd got a lot darker, a lot creepier and a hell of lot scarier.
A Stephen King movie with a good ending! I know, I was shocked too. Premise - a strange mist rolls into a small coastal town and traps a group of people in a shop. They bicker and argue and one rants endlessly about God's retribution (Stephen King cliche #1) then shit happens and on the whole it's not half bad after a bit of a slow start.
Monkey Dust - series one
Animated tv series featuring a variety of new up and coming UK TV comedians such as Rob Baynham. Bitting satire meets scatalogical humour of the basest kind in this riotously funny series. Characters such as 'Classically Trained Actor', 'First Time Cottager' and the 'Meatsafe Murderer (with Mr Hoppy)' take animation into the areas normally only populated by the little voice in the back of your head. Beautifully drawn and animated with scripts that can, and do, go anywhere this is highly recommended.
Grant Morrison - Talking With Gods
An interesting and enjoyable excursion into the career of one of the premier comics writers of his generation. I've been a fan of Morrison since his 2000AD days and he's one of very few writers in the field who you can rely on to give you a thoroughly enjoyable read every time out of the box whether he's doing work for hire or more personal projects.
This was a fairly typical talking heads style docu that didn't really offer too many insights into the man or the work but was most entertaining nonetheless.
I liked this a lot. Made like Sin City with a sort of futuristic steampunk feel to it. Sure there are plot holes you could drive a steam(punk)train through but what the hell. Beautiful looking with a quality cast that obviously took it seriously without ever taking it too seriously. Always nice to see a sci-fi movie with an actual sci-fi setting and premise.
My Name is Bruce
...Campbell and I'm going to trade on it to make a film that looks ok on paper but is pretty bad in actuality. I'll get the cheapest actors I can find, bang a script together over lunch and stick in some pointlessly smug references to my other (better) films and I'll make some easy money.