‘Phil’s Quick Capsule Review’ (a nod to legendary comedian Bill Hicks who coined the phrase when he reviewed ‘Piece Of Shit’ movie Basic Instinct)… where a perfect 10 is rarer than a rain free British summer!
Written by Phil Hobden – UK based podcaster, writer and former filmmaker. Part of the All Things Film network…
The final part of our run down of Phil’s Quick Review’s 100 Best Films as chosen by a select team of hosts, podcasters, fans and writers from Ross And Phil Talk Movies, The Smoking Lamb Podcast, Filmsploitation and the Phil’s Quick Review Facebook group.
Each week Phil, from Phil’s Quick Capsule Review, takes a look at a different movie or TV related Top Five. This time out: Movie Trilogies
For most a sequel is an unwanted thing. And rightly so, after all most can be let downs and for every Godfather 2 there is an Independence Day Resurrection. However their are also some great sequels and in fact some great threequels out their. This week I take a look at the best movie trilogies (and no the Matrix is NOT included).
Close But No Cigar:Bourne Trilogy, The Indiana Jones Trilogy, Evil Dead, The Godfather Trilogy, Die Hard, Mad Max
5. Lord Of The Rings Trilogy (The Fellowship of the Ring,The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King)
It’s no mean feat, adapting a multi-tome epic source novel over nearly 5 years with a cast and crew almostly permanently relocated to New Zealand by a director best known for low budget shlock films. But man did Peter Jackson pull it off. Epic does not even come CLOSE to describing the Rings trilogy (and the multiple endings of Return Of The King for that matter) but even now, over 10 years after it all finished, they still stand out as some of the best films of the last few decades.
4. Back To The Future Trilogy
There may be technically better films out their for sure, but the story of Marty McFly which spans over a hundred years, is everything that is right with how blockbuster films should be. It defined a career for Michael J Fox, allowed my fascination with Elisabeth Shue to continue and gave us the iconic Doc Brown. “What the hell’s a gigawatt?”. Indeed.
3. Aliens Trilogy (Alien, Aliens, Alien 3)
It’s a testament to just how good the first two films are that you almost ignore the fact that Part 3 is considered by most to be a disappointment. Thing is… it’s not. In fact Alien 3 is probably my second favourite of the whole trilogy (just under Aliens and just above Alien). Okay yes I’m mad but still! The key point here is just how good the first two films are, with both rating as best of their genre (Sci-fi and Sci-Fi Action). And trust me… whilst it’s FX’s are dated, try alien 3 Directors cut again. You MAY be pleasantly surprised.
2. Toy Story
Toy Story not only defined a genre, it also redefined how animation was done for ever. It’s groundbreaking and things would never be the same again. Yet at it’s heart of every one of the films is a great story, expertly told and brilliantly voiced. Pretty much perfect.
1. Star Wars (A New Hope, Empire Strikes Back, Return Of The Jedi)
The trilogy that defined my childhood, that ignited my love with film and that left me playing in my room with 3″ plastic toys for years to come. Ageless (in it’s original form, not the horrid CGI remasters), this is epic storytelling, grandstanding action and odd plot twists at their best. Iconic.
Phil’s Quick Capsule Review: Aliens is the template for how to make a sequel. Whilst Alien was a sci-fi horror, Aliens is pure action wrapped in a sci-fi narrative. And it works. Up the Aliens, add in more cannon fodder and take Ripley from a victim to killer. A quotable script, memorable characters and some of the most tense set pieces film has ever delivered. Yup Aliens is that good. Pretty much perfect.
Best Bit: Special Edition sentry guns!
Buy, Stream, Avoid: Buy
If You Liked this Try: Alien, Terminator 2 Judgement Day, Alien 3
Phil’s Quick Capsule Review: The Thing is the template for how to make a (relatively) low budget tense, character driven sci-fi horror. The remake is the template for how NOT to and that’s why it should be avoided at all costs. Carpenter’s The Thing is lightning in a bottle, it could never be bettered. In fact it cemented Russell as a leading man for generations to come and Carpenter as a true icon of horror. Critics hated it but even today it holds up as a true cult classic. Nearly perfect.
Best Bit: The ending.
Buy, Stream, Avoid: Buy
If You Liked this Try: Escape From New York, Halloween, Alien
In our continuing regular feature, Phil (of Phil’s Quick Capsule Review) along with podcaster Josh Morris, Writer Mike Parkin, Grosse Point Geek’s Will Strong and Motion Picture Manic Jamie Robinson breakdown the 25 Best Films Of a particular genre…
This time out: The Best Horror Films of All Time
The close but no cigar Films: Dawn of The Dead, You’re Next, The Blair Witch Project, The Pact, Grave Encounters, Let The Right One In, The Evil Dead
In our latest regular feature, coming out the first Friday of each month, Phil (of Phil’s Quick Capsule Review) along with podcaster Josh Morris, Writer Mike Parkin, Grosse Point Geek’s Will Strong and Motion Picture Manic Jamie Robinson breakdown the 25 Best Films Of each major film decade.
This time out: Films OF The Modern Era (1970’s – Now)
The close but no cigar Films:Apollo 13,Starship Troopers,Little Miss Sunshine,Lord Of The Rings The Fellowship of The Ring,The Descent,The Warriors,Airplane,Ghostbusters,The Thing,Top Gun,Social Network,The Cabin In The Woods, The Dark Knight Rises,Tree Of Life,Whiplash
Phil’s Quick Capsule Review: I like Blade Runner. I rewatched it today in it’s Final Cut form (a version I’ve never seen before). It’s a great film for sure, visually stunning and unquestionably groundbreaking . BUT and this is a BIG but… the story isn’t that great and worse still Decker is pretty useless as a character (Come on he lucks in at almost every turn). Controversially I also think the music is WAY to intrusive throughout and dates the film much more than the visuals or FX which hold up well. I can see why it’s classic to many and it’s influence has been vast. BUT not in my top 50 films, maybe even not in my Top 100.
Best Bit: “Ive seen…”
Buy, Stream, Avoid: Buy
If You Liked this Try:Blade Runner 2049, Alien, Strange Days
A look at the BEST films, one from each of my years on this planet…. (Yes ’86 and ’84 was impossible to split!)
… And yes a few do differ from my Annual ‘Film of The Year’. Hindsight is a wonderful thing!!!
1976 – The Outlaw Josey wales
1977 – Star Wars 1978 – Dawn Of The Dead
1979 – Alien
1980 – Empire Strikes Back 1981 – Raiders Of The Lost Ark 1982 – The Thing
1983 – The Return Of The Jedi 1984 – Ghostbusters/ Gremlins
1985 – The Goonies 1986 – Aliens/ Ferris Bueller’s Day Off/ Top Gun
1987 – The Lost Boys 1988 – Die Hard 1989 – Tango & Cash
1990 – Goodfellas 1991 – Terminator 2 Judgement Day
1992 – Reservoir Dogs
1993 – The Nightmare Before Christmas
1994 – Pulp Fiction 1995 – Heat 1996 – Trainspotting 1997 – Con Air 1998 – Lock Stock & Two Smoking barells
1999 – Fight Club
2000 – Snatch 2001 – Black Hawk Down 2002 – 28 days Later
2003 – Love Actually
2004 – Shaun Of The Dead
2005 – Serenity 2006 – Children of Men
2007 – Bourne Ultimatum 2008 – The Dark Knight 2009 – Slumdog Millonaire
2010 – The Social Network
2011 – Hugo 2012 – Skyfall 2013 – Rush 2014 – Wolf Of Wall Street 2015 – Whiplash 2016 – The Nice Guys
Ah the 70’s, such an odd decade, one we’re looking back on today for its contribution to cinema and the films it gave us, pretending for a moment that the first thing that comes to your mind when someone mentions the 70’s isn’t “oh yes, the time taken for the LSD induced insanity of the 60’s to transform into the cocaine fuelled haze of the 80’s; but I digress, here are the 10 best films of all the 70’s according to my stupid opinion; I really wanted to make it a top 20 if only to include all the well known classics and avoid sparking hatred but what can you do? Here’s hoping counting them as honourable mentions is good enough.
10. Monty Python And The Holy Grail
I tried picking a quote for this one, it couldn’t be done.
My skin still crawls when I think of the chestburster scene.
8. The Godfather
One of the greatest Gangster epics of all time, how can you top it…?
7. The Godfather Part 2
… Oh, that’s how.
6. Watership Down
The bloodiest U rated film of all time – that’s saying something.
5. Days Of Heaven
One of the most well shot films I have ever seen, and hey, Richard Gere can act.
My favourite Woody Allen film, just perfect in every way.
Terrence Malick’s first, and I love his recent works so screw you.
2. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre
Vile, sadistic and ugly – what’s not to love?
1. Star Wars
What can I say except what the hell else was it going to be?
Honourable Mentions: Aguirre: The Wrath Of God, Jaws, Taxi Driver, The Exorcist, The Life Of Brian, Duel, Dawn Of The Dead, Apocalypse Now, Saturday Night Fever, Rocky, A Clockwork Orange, Assault On Precinct 13, Close Encounters Of The Third Kind, Annie Hall, Salo Or The 120 Days Of Sodom