Baywatch (2017) – A Quick Capsule Review

Baywatch (2017) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Baywatch is a let down. The trailer, rumoured 21 Jump Street style approach and The Rock made this look like a slam dunk but at near two hours and with a tone that can never decide whether it’s a knock about romp or semi-serious take it’s much less the sum of it’s parts.  Oh and I wont even labour too much on the boat sequence fire CGI (some of the worst CGI I’ve seen in a big screen blockbuster in 20 years). It has it’s moments and the cast try hard but this could have been SO much better.

Best Bit: Mitch meets Mitch

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: 21 Jump Street, 22 Jump Street, Starsky & Hutch

IMDB Rating: 

 

Author: Phil Hobden

Blog: Ted 2 – A Quick Capsule Review

Blog: Ted 2 – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Okay so Ted was a case of lightning in a bottle.  A great script, a clever premise and a cast at the top of their game.  Oh and THAT cameo.  So Ted 2 was always going to struggle to beat that.  And unsurprisingly it doesn’t.  But at time sit comes bloody close.  It also has a stand out fight scene that is pretty much as funny as anything I’ve seen over the past year.  Seyfried offers an interesting love interest and Wahlberg is as good as he can be.  Yup the premise is stupid but then so its the central conceit.  So it’s not Ted.  But it’s also not as bad as many critics have said.

Best Bit: The geek fight scene.

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: Ted, Family Guy, 22 Jump Street

IMDB Rating: 

 

Author: Phil Hobden

Blog: Grosse Point Geek – 2014 Roundup Best & Worst Of The Year!

Blog: Grosse Point Geek – 2014 Roundup Best & Worst Of The Year!

A Blog Grosse Point Geek Uncategorized

As the year comes to a close, it has to be said that on reflection, 2014 has been pretty damn good for films. The summer blockbuster season produced one of the best sequels for ages in Dawn of The Planet of The Apes, we bade a fond farewell to Middle Earth with the release of the final Hobbit film and Marvel managed to do it again with the one two punch of both Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Guardians of The Galaxy. There was also the continued rise of some really exciting actors, specifically Richard Armitage (The Hobbit and Into the Storm) Benedict Cumberbatch (The Imitation Game) and Matthew McConaughey (just about everything).

It wasn’t all plain sailing though – Michael Bay managed to take a stinking robot sized dump on us all with the appalling Transformers: Age Of Extinction, Renny Harlin proved that Die Hard 2 and Cliff-hanger were but distant memories by giving us the risible Legend Of Hercules, and shockwaves went round Hollywood with the untimely deaths of both Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Robin Williams – both wonderful, talented actors who will be sorely missed.

So to business – now remember the following is only my opinion and doubtless a certain person (no names mentioned Hobden) will be in dire disagreement with me on most of it.

Read On.

 

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2014’s Top Ten Best Films (in no particular order):

  • The Wolf Of Wall Street – one of the most entertaining, profane and downright hilarious films since Pulp Fiction.
  • The Dallas Buyers Club – managed to be both heart-breaking and very funny with a brilliant academy award winning turn from Mathew McConaughey
  • Dawn Of The Planet of The Apes -really well made with amazing SFX, Andy Serkis’ astounding motion capture performance as lead ape Cesar and some exciting top notch action.
  • Captain America The Winter Soldier -incredibly entertaining and refreshingly different.
  • Guardians Of The Galaxy – utterly mental but so much good fun – damn clever too.
  • The Imitation Game – cracking film – If Cumberbatch doesn’t win an Oscar for this there’s simply no justice.
  • Fury -highly realistic, relentlessly exciting, and superbly acted – will stand the test of time as one of the best war movies ever made.
  • Interstellar -mind bending sci fi, outstanding SFX, great direction from Nolan and yet another amazing performance from McConaughey.
  • Gone Girl -great date movie, Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike were fantastic in the lead roles, and there was the usual rock solid direction from David Fincher. A must see.
  • The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies – certainly flawed and not as good as Return of The King, but still a cracking good movie, full to the brim with director Peter Jackson’s boundless imagination, epic battles and great acting (especially Richard Armitage as Thorin).

 

The Top Ten Honourable mentions

  • The Expendables 3 – daft as a brush, but absolutely huge fun, jam packed with fisticuffs, explosions and gunfights – plus Mel Gibson was a revelation as the villain.
  • Godzilla – Would have easily made the top ten best list if it hadn’t been for some very limp human characters and the criminal underuse of Brian Cranston. However it was exceptionally well directed by Blighty’s own Gareth Edwards and featured SFX and monster action that was frankly gobsmacking.
  • Maleficent – surprisingly lovely film, with real hidden depths and a wonderful performance from Angelina Jolie.
  • Pompeii – great action, good use of 3d that actually benefitted proceedings and a deliciously OTT Kiefer Sutherland as the chief Roman baddie.
  • Hercules – preposterous in just about every way you can think, but a rollicking good ride, featuring some top battles and good show from Dwayne Johnson.
  • Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit – Another fun film – Phil hated this, but I just couldn’t help liking it – hopefully there will be more.
  • 300: Rise Of An Empire – ridiculous prequel/equal/sequel to Zach Snyder’s 2006 original. Nary a shot was without a rippling torso, severed limb or a lot of shouting, and Gerard Butler was sorely missed – but despite this it managed to be extremely entertaining.
  • The Raid 2 – Another one that would have made the top ten best list – not quite as good as the first entry, a bit talky and at least 20 minutes too long, but the presence of the indestructible Iko Uwais, Gareth Evans sure handed direction and some bone crunching fight scenes made for a absolute corker of a film.
  • Lone Survivor – Peter Berg atones for Battleship, with the true story of four Special Forces commandos trapped behind enemy lines in Afghanistan. Featuring brutal action, a welcome absence of jingoistic American flag waving and some great acting – especially from Mark Wahlberg and Taylor Kitsch.
  • Edge Of Tomorrow – Basically Groundhog Day meets Aliens –but Cruise gets his best role for a long time, plus it was really well written, and all the set pieces were excellent.

 

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The 4 Most Overrated of 2014

  • X-Men: Days Of Future Past – With Bryan Singer back directing, I expected to be blown away by this one – but instead of a welcome return to the awesomeness of X2 and X-Men 1st Class, what we got was at times a very entertaining film, that sadly let itself down all too often by miring the audience in overly talky dialogue and overblown exposition. Not only that but the ending made no sense at all.
  • 22 Jump Street : The first one was well written and funny, this admittedly was good in places – especially when Ice Cube was on the screen – but was I the only one who thought it was just a rehash of the original film?
  • Lucy – On release this was a massive box office hit – however I am still trying to fathom out as to why. Ok Scarlett Johansson was pretty good in the title role, but the story was basically a rip off of Limitless and by the end got so preposterous that it stretched even my usual levels of tolerance.
  • Snowpiercer – Despite having a good first 40 minutes plus a great title, cast and setting – this one turned out to be a right let down. Mainly due to the fact that what should have been a slam bang post apocalyptic actioner ,turned out to be a rather boring arty farty oddity that had woefully disappeared up its own orifice by the time the credits had rolled.

 

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The Top Five Worst of 2014

  1. Transformers: Age of Extinction – There are not enough words in the English language to describe the utter unmitigated hatred I have for this steaming pile of celluloid ordure. There is just no excuse for a summer blockbuster about Robots fighting each other to be nearly 3 hours long, deathly dull, mind numbingly boring, badly written and offensive. Without doubt the worst film of 2014 and quite possibly of the last 10 years too. Shameful.
  1. The Legend Of Hercules – Laughably pants, with a balsa wood infused “performance” from Kellan Lutz, crap fights; terrible direction from Renny Harlin and editing that appears to have been done with a blunt machete. Avoid like the plague.
  1. Non Stop – how on earth an action movie starring Liam Neeson of all people can be this bad is beyond me. Dire.
  1. 3 Days To Kill – Despite a spirited central performance from Kevin Costner , this meandering Taken wannabe failed miserably on every level to be even remotely engaging and provided more evidence (if any was needed) that McG is one of the most inept directors working today.
  1. The Amazing Spiderman 2 – Overly bloated sequel with an oddly dislikeable performance from Andrew Garfield as Spidey, Jamie Foxx’s awful pantomime villain, zero story and dull action scenes – which all in all made for one of poorest superhero movies for a very long time.


Next Time: My Preview of 2015

 
Author: Will Strong 

 

Blog: A Million Ways To Die In The West – A Quick Capsule Review

Blog: A Million Ways To Die In The West – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Okay so if you are expecting a film on par with the rather superb Ted then A Million Ways To Die In The West will disappoint.  If you are looking for a comedy that has laughs, some nice set pieces and the greatest cameo in a film ever (yes even better than Zombieland) then there’s actually a lot to enjoy here.  It’s still crap but it passed the Kermode 6 laugh test within the first twenty minutes and maintained it throughout. SO not amazing, a film you will only ever watch once but if you like the Family Guy style humour then this should appeal.

Best Bit: THAT Cameo

Buy, Rent, Stream, Borrow: Rent

If You Liked this Try: Ted, Family Guy, 22 Jump Street

 

Author: Phil Hobden

Blog: Let’s Be Cops – A Quick Capsule Review

Blog: Let’s Be Cops – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Er… Let’s Not? Look the trailer was funny enough, well enough to convince me to give this a go despite the generally scathing reviews.  Add to the fact I quite like Wayans & Johnson from their roles on New Girl… well it couldn’t be that bad could it? Actually it’s not THAT bad. It’s also not that good either.  The film has it’s moments but the joke (and the jokes for that matter) run thin within 4o minutes and sadly the film has well over an hour to go at that point.  In short: It’s a good idea for a TV show episode, a bad idea for a movie. Wayans & Johnson DO have charisma but you’re better off sticking to New Girl.

Best Bit: The first time the guys suit up is pretty funny.  By this film’s standards.

Buy, Rent, Stream, Borrow: Borrow

If You Liked this Try: 21 Jump Street, 22 Jump Street, Neighbours

 

Author: Phil Hobden

Blog: Grosse Point Geek – Will’s Quick Capsule Review

Blog: Grosse Point Geek – Will’s Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Will is back with another round up of films he’s seen including two classic films (well in age sense at least).  Thanks to Netflix (not that they pay us or him but thanks for having the cool movies).

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Nymphomaniac Volume 1 and 2 (Netflix)

Actors: Charlotte Gainsbourg, Jamie Bell, Shia Lebeouf, Christian Slater, Willem Dafoe, Udo Kier, Stellan Skarsgaard, Uma Thurman.

Two part film directed by the highly controversial (and somewhat self important) Lars Von Trier, his latest opus features Gainsbourg as the titular nympho who recounts her naughty life story to Skargaard’s bookish virgin. On the plus side its well acted – especially by Sharsgaard and Slater (in a career best performance) and at times has some inventive direction from Von Trier. However its hideously boring, deathly slow, over long, utterly pretentious throughout and features a laughable performance from Lebeouf who adopts the kind of crap comedy British accent that would shame even Dick Van Dyke.

One to avoid.

 

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22 Jump Street (BluRay)

Actors: Channing Tatum, Jonah Hill, Ice Cube.

So so sequel to the superb 2012 original. Funny in parts, with another hilarious turn from Ice Cube as Tatum and Hill’s bad tempered police captain. However its just a (admittedly deliberate) rehash of the 1st film and despite some laughs just didn’t cut the mustard for me .

Soon to be available on dvd and Blu Ray

 

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New Feature: Grosse Pointe Geek’s Retro Review Corner!

Having invested wisely in Netflix, i now have the opportunity to watch all manner of films released in the 80’s and 90’s that i never got round to seeing in the 1st place  or only watched the once. This month – Re-animator and Fright Night.

 

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Re-Animator (1985)

Directed by Stuart Gordon and starring Jeffrey Combs as mad scientist Dr Herbert West. This is blood soaked Frankenstein inspired mayhem on an epic scale and more than a bit sick in parts as well. The make up effects are also excellent and Combs has never been better. Very funny, they dont make them like this any more!

Highly recommended!

 

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Fright Night (1985)

William Ragsdale is the goofy high school kid who discovers a vampire (Chris Sarandon) has moved in next door. Obviously no one believes him so he recruits Roddy Mcdowell’s reluctant horror film actor to help him kill said Nosferatu. Back in the day this was a sizable hit and is fondly remembered by all who watched it – with the exception of me  -indeed i remember it being crap then and its still as crap now. Sarandon is good as the vampire but the sfx are terrible, the script is appalling and Ragsdale is extremely lame in the lead role.

Interestingly this was remade in 2011 with Anton Yelchin, David Tennant and Colin Farrell, and in my opinion is a hell of a lot better than the original.

 

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Author: Will Strong