Podcast: The Smoking Lamb #085 – All The Money In The World, Hostiles, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri

Podcast: The Smoking Lamb #085 – All The Money In The World, Hostiles, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri

The Podcasts The Smoking Lamb Podcast

It’s The Smoking Lamb Movie Podcast. A weekly, no-holds-baa-aa-arred, and R-rated look at the world of movies.

On this episode: The cinema show returns for 2018, and gets stuck right in with three reviews of the biggest movies out at the moment. First Mike gives an overview of All The Money In The World, then he and Ricky B take a look at the Christian Bale western, HOSTILES, and Mike and Steve talk at length about THREE BILLBOARDS OUTSIDE EBBING, MISSOURI. Plus we have the usual News Roundup, Educating Josh, Top Five (worst films nominated for Best Picture) and Ricky B Addresses the Lamb.

Check it out and BLEAT THE WORLD and don’t forget to follow up on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

#TheSmokingLamb #MoviePodcasts #Podcasts #FilmPodcast


Phil’s Top 5… Bruce Wayne’s

Phil’s Top 5… Bruce Wayne’s

Other Cr*p Top 5

Each week Phil, from Phil’s Quick Capsule Review, takes a look at a different movie or TV related Top Five.  This time out: the best Big (and small) screen Bruce Wayne’s…


Close but no cigar: Will Arnett, Val Kilmer, George Clooney


5 – Ben Affleck

Like the film or not, Affleck’s broken Bruce Wayne is a dark step for sure but one that works to establish this character now willing to go to the edge.


4 – Adam West

Play boy , raconteur and brimming with charisma West by far has the most fun with Wayne.


3 – Christian Bale

I like Bale’s version of Wayne.  He actually tries to give the character a different spin and plays up the arrogance you’d expect with a man of that wealth and power.


2 – Michael Keaton

Witness his opening scene in Batman.  The pen In the plant pot, the glass almost smashing.  The darkness under the eyes.  Keaton owned Bruce Wayne for me more than he did Batman.


1 – Kevin Conroy

The animated Bruce Wayne is near perfect.  Such charisma, all delivered with some skilful animation for sure but owned by the outstanding voice work.  The quintessential Bruce Wayne.



Blog: All Things Film – Exodus Gods And Kings Reviewed (Well Kinda)


So Ridley Scott’s latest… well to save you time (both in reading this review and watching this film) it joins a VERY small list of films I couldn’t actually finish.  Yup with a planner full of Justin’s, House Of Cards and, frankly, watching point dry as alternatives I gave up at just over an hour and a quarter.

However in lieu of a review of the full film, this is what I have learnt from what I managed to endure:

1) All Egyptians are camper than Julian Clary at a camping exhibition on national be camp day.

2) Every-time a Hebrew speaks I keep expecting dialogue from Life Of Brian to come out. Yes it’s that badly mounted at times.

3) It looks amazing. Computers can sure make an impressive looking film. Sadly however as you know nothing is real in the film and everything is CGI (maybe even Bale’s beard?) I keep trying to grab my PS4 remote to start playing the game then remember it’s actually a film and I haven’t just been watching cut scenes. This is disappointing. 

4) ALL Ridley Scott films MUST start with Basil Exposition captions. It’s the law. 

5) There are no mirrors in Ancient Egypt. If there were, Moses would clearly be able to see he looks nothing like a fucking Egyptian and therefore when he is told he is in fact Hebrew he, like everyone else watching, should be able to go ” Duh! No shit! Do I look like one of them?”. This could make the film about an hour shorter. 

6) John Turturro is a terrible actor. This is only JUST a step up from his appearances in Transformers. He should now retire safe in the knowledge that anything good he once did has now been forgotten. Much like Rolph Harris. 

7) Egyptians seem to have accents ranging from what I assume is Egyptian, to American, to British American to I have no god damn idea what accent Turturro was doing.  This is Russell Crowe in Robin Hood all over again but with a whole cast instead.

8) Time jumps from meeting someone to getting married in the NEXT SHOT just doesn’t work at all. Then to do it again seconds later and he has kids? Criminal.

9) Alien and to a lesser extend Blade Runner were flukes. Ridley Scott is a hack.

10) Prometheus 2 should now be avoided at all costs. As should this.

Author: Phil Hobden


To hear more on this review (and others like it) make sure you download the Filmsploitation podcast, part of the All Things Film network. 

Blog: Grosse Point Geek – Rapid Fire Reviews Jan 2015

Blog: Grosse Point Geek – Rapid Fire Reviews Jan 2015

A Blog Grosse Point Geek Uncategorized

Happy New Year fellow film fans! Welcome to Grosse Pointe Geeks Jan 2015 Rapid Fire Review!



Exodus: Gods and Kings

Director: Ridley Scott

Actors: Christian Bale, Joel Edgerton, Ben Kingsley, Aaron Paul, John Turturro, Sigourney Weaver.

Scott has another stab at the historical epic with this so-so retelling of the story of Moses. On the plus side its beautifully photographed, very well directed and the set designs are amazing. However, its too long, fairly dull in places and there isn’t nearly enough action. Also Weaver and Aaron Paul barely get a look in -making one wonder why they were cast in the first place, not only that but to be honest the whole thing had a distinct whiff of Ridley Scott tapping Gladiator all over again.

At Cinemas now



The Expendables 3

Director: Patrick Hughes

Actors: Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Mel Gibson, Harrison Ford, Dolph Lundgren, Wesley Snipes, Jet Li, etc etc.

Recently released on Blu Ray, which includes an extended more violent version than the one released in cinemas. Now i know i did a quick review of it last year, but if I’ve said it once I’ll say it again – for the love of God and Mammon – if you haven’t done it already  -please please watch this film!

Yes its silly, no it isn’t Shakespeare but if you love an action movie that doesn’t take itself too seriously, is well made and extremely entertaining – then this is definitely for you.

(On Blu Ray and DVD now  – however i would recommend getting it on Blu Ray)



The Heat

Director: Paul Fieg

Actors: Sandra Bullock, Mellissa McCarthy

The mismatched cop genre is mined once more in this fairly good action comedy. Bullock is the straight laced FBI agent who reluctantly teams up with McCarthy’s slobbish Boston detective. Skips along at a rare old pace, very profane and actually quite funny in parts – especially McCarthy who gets all the quality one liners.

However we have seen this kind of film many times before in the 1980’s and one hopes that its success wont necessarily inspire Hollywood to go down that route all over again.

Available on DVD/Blu Ray and Netflix




The Hobbit: The Battle of The Five Armies

Director: Peter Jackson

Actors: Martin Freeman, Richard Armitage, Luke Evans, Ian McKellan, Lee Pace, Orlando Bloom.

The Middle Earth saga comes to a close with this epic final chapter that sees all and sundry close in on the Lonely Mountain to try and claim the gold from Thorin and Dwarves.. Freeman, Evans, Armitage and McKellan give faultless performances once again, plus Jackson effortlessly crafts a film that not only looks fantastic but is incredibly enjoyable as well. I will say this though – as good as it is, it cant touch the Return Of The King and one did get the feeling that a lot of footage was held back for the yet to be released 2015 extended edition DVD.

At Cinemas now



The Imitation Game

Director: Morten Tyldum

Actors: Benedict Cumberbatch, Keira Knightly, Mark Strong, Charle Dance, Matthew Goode.

Based on the true story of Alan Turing – a brilliant mathematician who single handedly built a machine that could decipher the Nazi Enigma Code and as a result turned the tide of World War 2, saving millions of lives in the process. A totally outstanding film, with a mesmerising performance from Cumberbatch that, if there is any justice, will bag him a much deserved Oscar nomination. One of the best films of 2014 – highly recommended.

At cinemas now



The Pyramid

Director: Gregory Levasseur

Actors: James Buckley, Ashley Hinshaw

Found footage film featuring a team of archaeologists who unearth a lost pyramid then get trapped inside, whilst being pursued by evil supernatural forces and all manner of flesh eating beasties. Descends into CGI madness at the end but to be fair the story is quite interesting, there are some pretty scary bits and its certainly worth a look for anyone who enjoyed last years As Above So Below.

Possibly still at cinemas now




Sin City 2: A Dame To Kill For

Director: Robert Rodriguez, Frank Miller

Actors: Mickey Rourke, Bruce Willis, Jessica Alba, Eva Green, Josh Brolin, Joseph Gordon levitt, Powers Booth.

Not bad sequel to the 2005 original. Well made, fairly enjoyable with some good performances  – especially Brolin, Levitt, Booth and Green, however the narrative and story aren’t as well structured as the first film and overall it all feels like a case of been there done that with no need to do it again  – which seems to be all Robert Rodriguez does these days anyway.

Available on DVD/Blu ray



The Wicker Tree

Director: Robin Hardy

Actors: Graham McTavish, Christopher Lee

Adaptation of the novel ‘Cowboys for Christ’ and a sort of sequel/companion piece to Hardy’s original film – The Wicker Man.

Suffice to say that once in a while there comes a film that is so bad that it automatically gets into my top ten worst of all time list………and this is that film. Awful in just about every way you can imagine – cheap looking, amateurish direction, terrible acting, appalling script,  and overall a complete and utter insult to anyone who enjoyed the first film.


Available on Netflix (if you can be bothered)




That’s it for now.  I’ll be back soon…

Author: Will Strong 


Review: Out Of The Furnace (Cinema)

Review: Out Of The Furnace (Cinema)

Other Cr*p Uncategorized

The Review: As nice as it is to see Christian Bale not playing a campy superhero, there seems to be mostly only one setting he goes for, lately; that of the slightly angry, mostly psychotic revenge-fuelled layabout.

Out of the Furnace is no different. Here, Bale plays a mill worker who’s relatively happy shacked up with Zoe Saldana (and who wouldn’t be?) and generally getting on with life. His younger brother, Rodney, played by Casey Affleck is a war veteran deeply shaken to the core by his adventures and trying to make ends meet by involving himself in illicit bare knuckle boxing matches.

Of course this won’t turn out well. Affleck mostly steals the show as the dim-witted brother who enlists the services of a local kingpin (Daefo) to go and fight a few rounds under the supervision of DeGroat (Woody Harrelson, channeling Mickey Knox) – the USA’s most evillest, violent and balding crime lord since Ben Kingsley’s Don Logan.

It’s all played perfectly well. Bale does all he can to say the line “Rodney, You PLONKER!” at almost every turn. Affleck convinces us that he’s a no good, shell-shocked nitwit. He manages to continue to convince us with his performance in this film, too. Scott “Crazy Heart” Cooper’s direction is at once quiet and under-laboured – a welcome follow-up to the gushing Jeff Bridges starrer a couple of years back.
Sadly, all this grandiose blatancy is underserved by a script perfectly willing to throttle along one two major plot contrivances. Bale, early on, involves himself in a car crash. It’s a stone in the shoe of the film’s overall message, and certainly surplus to requirement. It’s a plot device enabling him to fester anger and defy the odds of engaging the world’s most ruthless badass on his own turf. It’s extremely unnecessary given the certainty of the material and feels more at home in a Scott Adkins picture.

Next up – in what I consider to be this year’s head-slapping “Oh WHY did you bother doing that?!” moment, a cell phone is accidentally knocked out of a pocket and records a damning indictment for two characters who meet their demise shortly after. The pious artificiality of this action and when it occurs – conveniently before both men are executed – donkey punches the believability of the movie right at the time when it’s most needed.

And then there’s the end. It’s satisfying, all right. It’s the payoff we expect and we deserve. Take this beginning and ending – and a rather edifying, if fleeting, repatriation between Bale and Saldana’s estranged lovers on a railway bridge – and you have one of the movies of the year. But take into account the liberal use of mistrust of an audience’s appreciation for not being treated like cretins in two moments such as the ones I’ve describe, then the filmmaker’s shouldn’t be surprised at a reaction like mine.

We’re not dumb. Casey Affleck is dumb.

And I’m not knocking off at least two points for the middle finger, thankyouverymuch

Reviewed By: Andrew Mackay

Join the debate on our Facebook Group (www.facebook.com/groups/Filmsploitation) or on our website (www.thefilmpodcast.co.uk)


Review: American Hustle (Cinema)

Review: American Hustle (Cinema)


The Review: Okay so the Award For Overrated Film Of 2014 goes to… American Hustle. Much like Silver Linings Snore Fest last year, this is a film that did nothing for me. Yes it looked nice (Gravity), yes it was well acted with a great soundtrack (Playbook) but fuck me after an hour I couldn’t care less about the characters or what they did, let alone the story that went nowhere fast.

It’s the smuggest film of the year (okay the year is but a day old but trust me year end no film will out smug this), from a smug director who everyone seems to think can do no wrong.

As you may have heard (in the somewhat over flattering press surrounding this movie) Amy Adams and Jennifer Lawrence are great, turning in real career highlight performances, and it’s nice to see Christian Bale acting again with his talent rather than his creepy bat voice, but seriously there are only so many shots of women in front split dresses and no bra (Bra budget for this movie =$0) that I can take and after about 15 mins (about 150 shots of said offence) I’d had enough. Which is roughly also the point where i start dot get bored.

This is the point where usually I’d recap the story. I can’t. It went something like… Someone cons someone then get’s taped up by the FBI to con someone else. Sound riveting? No. Not really.

But wait! Don’t worry about the story listen to this LOUD song from our GREAT SOUNDTRACK. Or look at this CAMEO. Whatever you do don’t focus on the story…

Director Russell has turned in a karaoke version of a Scorsese film without the heart or talent. It just made me want to watch Casino or Goodfellas again. In fact American Hustle is like a great receipt the filmmakers once saw on TV then years later tried to cook it again… they got the ingredients right (other than the dash of Cooper which turned out to be a full smug bottle full) but they just had no idea how to put them together into something that is more than a sprinkling of flash (okay food references over).

Wait! STOP! Over here! Look at Amy Adams in a front split dress and no Bra! Just ignore the story.

In my book Russell has made ONE good film – Three Kings, one okay film (The Fighter) and two of the most over praised films of the decade.

Side note: Also my bug for 2013/14… can directors please use different cast members in films. Even Scorsese gave DeNiro a break from now and then. Having almost the whole cast of Silver Linings PlayBook just annoyed me, whilst reminding me that Cooper overacts at ever chance.


Emperors new clothes? Sadly no… see the films greatest con is actually convincing the press (and cinema goers) that what they are seeing is something great when in fact it’s a polished turd. A nice looking one. But a polished turd none the less.


Reviewed By: Phil Hobden

Join the debate on our Facebook Group (www.facebook.com/groups/Filmsploitation) or on our website (www.thefilmpodcast.co.uk)


Phil’s 5 Best Films of 2012

Phil’s 5 Best Films of 2012

Quick Review Year In Review

Film of The Year: Argo
In Brief: Superbly tense, well paced and directed, Argo was not only the most enjoyable film of the year but also one of the most surprising. A+ for Affleck the director

2. Chronicle
In Brief: WTF. A found footage movie that makes all other found footage movies redundant, Chronicle is also the best superhero story of (a very crowded) year. Clever, shocking, compelling…

3. Skyfall
In Brief: Bond is back and he has (pretty much) never been better.  Whilst Casino Royale was a better film this is by far the better Bond film.  Classic references, great action, superb cast… Bond has a long way to go to top this.

4. Avengers
In Brief: Blockbuster of the year.  Smart, funny, character driven super hero flick that is only let down by an end that isn’t quite as good as the build up.

5. TED
In Brief: Funniest film of 2012 but a country mile, TED is just brilliant.

Bubbling under:
The Dark Knight Rises, The Raid; 21 Jump Street; The Muppets; Cabin In The Woods; Universal Solider: Day Of Reckoning; End Of Watch; Dredd 3D; Killer Joe; How I Spent My Summer Vacation; The Descendants; We Bought A Zoo; Everything Or Nothing

Phil’s 5 Best Films of 2008

Phil’s 5 Best Films of 2008

Quick Review Year In Review

Film of The Year: The Dark Knight (9.5/10)
In Brief: Without a doubt one of the best movies in many a year, let alone best superhero film ever, The Dark Knight is an amazingly well made and well acted blockbuster that ticks all the right buttons.

2. Wall – E

In brief: Pixar hit gold with this charming kids film

3. In Bruges
In brief: Shock Horror! An original take on the British gangster film.

4. Sweeney Todd
In brief: Tim Burton is back on form with this gruesome musical.

5. Iron man
In brief: Marvel strike gold with what will be one of the all time great Superhero films.

Bubbling under:
Hell Boy 2; Taken; Felon; RockNRolla; Forgetting Sarah Marshal; Rambo; Doomsday; Son of Rambow; Quantum Of Solace; What Happens In vegas