The Expendables 3 (2014) – A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

The Expendables 3 (2014) – A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
I’ve not been the biggest fan of the Expendables films.  The first had a great concept but fell short and the second, whilst fun, was pretty forgettable.  So it really was with limited expectations that I arrived at Expendables 3.  And you know what?  Not only is it the best of the three films, it’s also one of the better films of 2014. Fun, funny (with some amazing one liners and call backs to classic action films from the cast) with top notch action scenes and a cast at the top of their game (not least a resurgent Mel Gibson & Wesley Snipes).  In short: Great fun.

Best Bit: The finale

Buy, Rent, Stream, Borrow: Buy

If You Liked this Try: Expendables, Expendables 2, Commando


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Phil’s 2015 Preview & Look Back At 2014 Predictions…

Phil’s 2015 Preview & Look Back At 2014 Predictions…

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick look at what’s wetting his whistle for the upcoming year in films… Yup 2015 is going to be a BIG year.

Most Excited:  Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Er of course.  What else could it be? Well probably the Avengers. or Mad max.  But actually it was always going toe Star Wars.  Even after the prequels tanked and Star Trek Into Darkness ended up being a bit of a let down, an intriguing teaser trailer and a promise of film more like the original trilogy has gotten my excitement levels peaking.  It could all still go very wrong BUT right now the signs look very good.

2. Avengers: Age Of Ultron
Come on did you REALLY expect anything else???  Avengers was blockbuster cinema at it’s best and so far Marvel haven’t put a foot wrong (even the ‘risky’ Guardians turned out to be a massive hit).  So the returning Joss Whedon, the additional of the excellent Elizabeth Olson, James Spader and Andy Sirkis, the fact it’s coming after probably the strongest run of Marvel film yet (Iron Man 3, Capt 2, Guardian’s) well it all means this one has VERY hight expectations attached.  Oh and judging by the trailer… it’s shouldn’t disappoint.



3. Mad Max: Fury Road
This is an odd one.  The trailer looks amazing. Tom Hardy is about as good as you can get in terms of replacing a peak Mel Gibson. And Miller has always been at his best with the Max films.  There is a BUT. And that But is it’s been forever since the last great Miller film.  And even longer since the last good Mad Max film.  BUT (again) the trailer is amazing and it IS Mad Max… so fingers (and toes) crossed.



4. Pitch Perfect 2
Oh fuck it. Come on Pitch Perfect was awesome fun. And if they go in with even a 10th of the same spirit and sense fun as they did with that film, this should be a winner.  The Pitch Is back.



5.  Bond 24
No trailer.  No story.  Pretty much no idea other than Mendes and Craig returning, alongside Skyfall alumni Whishaw, Fiennes and Harris.  Oh and Lea Seydoux.  And Christoph Waltz.  And… okay to be honest I was sold with Mendes.  Look Skyfall was probably one of the best Bond films ever.  And whilst it’s going to be hard to follow up, you kinda get the feeling if Mendes is back he has an idea.  And THAT should make this well worth a watch.  Oh and did I mention that pesky Blofeld rumour…


Bubbling Under: Mission Impossible 5 (At worst the last two MI films have been bloody good blockbusters), Ant Man (Could this be Marvels first flop… no), Minions Movie (It’s got Minions… ), American Sniper (Clint! Cooper! Guns!), Kingsmen The Secret Service (Great trailer! Great Cast! Great Director! ), Fast & Furious 7 (It’s still got lets), Magic Mike XXL (Magic Mike was ace), London has Fallen (Butler is back!  If it’s half as mad as part 1 it should be a hoot)













Stinker Of The Year (Part 1): Terminator: Genisys
It pains me to say it but this just looks terrible.  A terrible title. Those horrid Entertainment Weekly cast shots. A reboot story.  An old Arnie T-800.  There’s just nothing that excited me about this film.  At all.

Stinker Of The Year (Part 2): Point Break
Fuck you Hollywood.  Point Break is about on of the most perfect action crimes films ever made. And you want to reboot it.  In the wold of ‘Extreme Sports’.  Yup Hollywood is creatively bankrupt and this is the proof.

Jupiter Ascending (They haven’t made a good film since The Matrix), Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension (Ugh… really?),  The Fantastic Four (Good director, bad cast), Fifty Shades Of Grey (Shooting fish in a barrel) , Jurassic World (Trailer didn’t grab me. ), Hunger Games, Insurgent, Maze Runner Sequels (The Teen Angst thing has dramatically run out of steam)



So how did I do last year?

This is the time of the year when I look back at my picks of the good, the bad and the ugly from 2014 and see how close I was (or as it often is the case, how far!)…

For the Best:  I tipped X Men Days of Future Past, Godzilla, Interstellar, The Raid 2 and The Monuments Men as my Most Anticipated of 2014.  Well X-Men was a bit of a let down for me (although critically it was very well received).  Godzilla, Interstellar &  The Raid 2 were all very good, but with only Interstellar ending up near my top 5 films of the year. The Monuments Men flopped critically and commercially and whilst it wasn’t quite as bad as everyone thought it was a let down.

As for the Stinkers?  Well Transformers: Age Of Extinction ended up being one of the worst films I’ve ever seen.  But we all knew that even before the film was made.  So that was spot on then! Jupiter Ascending slipped to 2015 so is back on that list for next year and whilst  Need For Speed was bad Robocop wasn’tthe cluster fuck we all expected (although totally forgotten about by the time end of year rolled around), Expendables 3 was great fun probably the best of the 3 films (and the unrated cut delivered all the action the PG13 cut missed) and Noah ended up being EXACTLY as expected – dull, stupid and far too long.


So here’s to 2014… see you again next year!

Blog: Grosse Point Geek – Will’s Rapid Fire Reviews

Blog: Grosse Point Geek – Will’s Rapid Fire Reviews

A Blog Grosse Point Geek Uncategorized

Will delivers his quick reviews for July… Warning! Contains Transformers 4! 

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Expendables 3

Director: Patrick Hughes

Actors: Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Mel Gibson, Wesley Snipes, Harrison Ford, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Antonio Banderas, Dolph Lundgren, Jet Li.

Sly, The Stath, Arnie etc return for a 3rd outing as everyone’s favourite geriatric arse kickers  – this time they are up against a ruthless arms dealer and former Expendable played by Mel Gibson.  As per usual the highbrow critics have already got their snooty claws into this one  –TAKE NO NOTICE OF THEM!.Expendables 3 is huge fun, jam packed with fisticuffs, gunfights and enough explosions to blow up a 3rd world county, its also very funny in parts and extremely well directed by newcomer Patrick Hughes. The performances are all great too- Stallone and Statham continue to make a great on screen duo, Harrison Ford is his usual grizzled self and clearly having a very good time, thankfully there’s alot more of Arnie this time round – and he’s brill, Antonio Banderas is hilarious as the motor mouthed Galgo and finally Mel Gibson is simply fantastic and effortlessly upstages everyone as the villainous Conrad Stonebanks -why? well basically because he’s a far better actor than most of the cast put together!

Great film this, don’t miss it. One of the years best.

At Cinemas now

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Guardian’s Of The Galaxy

Director: James Gunn

Actors: Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Dave Batista.

Marvel continues to impress with this cracking sci fi/superhero film, that proves once and for all that no other studio can touch them for comic book adaptations. The entire cast are universally excellent, especially Chris Pratt as Peter Quill – a sort of Han Solo wannabe, who’s not as cool as he thinks he is, there are also great turns from Saldana and Batista, plus Vin Diesel and Bradley Cooper are very funny as Groot (a talking tree) and Rocket (a gun toting genetically enhanced racoon). James Gunn’s direction is fast paced and frenetic, the action comes thick and fast and the use of 70’s and 80’s songs throughout is very clever. A word of warning though  – it aint nearly as good as The Avengers and alot of the best bits were already featured in its (admittedly very good) trailers. However i had a great time with it and I would certainly watch the sequel.

At cinemas now

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The Lego Movie

Directors: Phil Lord and Chris Miller

Actors (Voices) Chris Pratt, Morgan Freeman, Will Ferrell.

My other half went to see this earlier in the year and absolutely raved about it. However i wasn’t as enthusiastic as she was. Admittedly it is a good film and there is alot of things to admire – notably the animation which is very well executed, and at times displays moments of utter genius. Despite this though, its at least 15 minutes too long, and its script isn’t as clever as i thought it would be. Worth a look though and if you have kids they will enjoy it.

Available on DVD/blu ray now

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Machete Kills

Director: Robert Rodriguez

Actors: Danny Trejo, Mel Gibson, Amber Heard, Charlie Sheen.

Rodriguez continues his unfathomable obsession with the Grind house movie subculture with this marginally better sequel to his 2010 original. Quite funny in parts but to be honest that’s about all the praise i can muster. For a start ,its way too long, has a humour that seems to be targeted only at fans of these types of films, and despite his cult status, Trejo is not a very good actor and has zero leading man presence. Then there is Mel Gibson – appearing here as Voz, the main villain – what he does is good and admittedly its a fun role, but for the love of God, the guy is an Oscar winning director, an extremely accomplished actor (he was Hamlet!) and far too good for a film like this. Yes we all know he has done wrong in the past few years, and no one is condoning his actions, however time is a great healer, he’s done his penance, and the fact that he has appeared and in some of the best and most successful  films of the past 25 years should at least warrant Hollywood giving him another shot. Mel, you are one hell of an actor and filmmaker, don’t do any more crap like Machete Kills – you are better than that mate. Available on Netflix and to buy on DVD

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The Colony

Director: Jeff Renfroe

Actors: Lawrence Fishburne, Bill Paxton, Kevin Zegers.

Doomsday meets Snowpiercer in this enjoyable but low budget post apocalyptic actioner. Well made with strong performances from Fishburne and Paxton, and good solid direction from Renfroe. At its heart its nothing more than a B movie but damned good entertainment nonetheless. Available on Netflix and to buy on DVD.

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Alex Cross

Director: Rob Cohen

Actors: Tyler Perry, Matthew Fox.

Reboot of the character previously played by Morgan Freeman in Kiss The Girls and Along Came a Spider. Starts well, with some good action and an interesting plot. All this is for nothing though due to a cheese coated script and an incredibly miscast Perry in the lead role.

Very average

Available on Lovefilm and to buy on DVD.

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About Time

Director: Richard Curtis

Actors: Domhall Gleeson, Rachel Mcadams, Bill Nighy.

Smashing film this. Gleeson finds out that the men in his family can travel back in time and uses said gift to win the girl of his dreams, do nice things for his mates and spend more time with his Dad. Sounds corny  – and it is, but when a film is as enjoyable as this it really doesn’t matter. A proper date movie…………and if Bill Nighy isn’t knighted soon then there’s no justice.

Available to buy on DVD

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Director: Brett Ratner

Actors: Dwayne Johnson, John Hurt, Rufus Sewell, Ian McShane

The walking man mountain of testosterone that is Dwayne Johnson plays the title role in this very enjoyable (and somewhat mental)adaptation of Steve Moore’s Hercules: Thracian Wars comic book. Great battles, lots of fighting, a charismatic lead performance from the always good value Johnson and a surprisingly intelligent streak that is rarely (if ever) seen in a Brett Ratner film.
Highly recommended.

At cinemas now.

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Transformers: Age Of Extinction

Director: Michael Bay

Actors: Mark Wahlberg, Kelsey Grammar, Stanley Tucci.

There are many ways to describe this film, all of which are potentially libellous and offensive. So i will sum it up thus – when i was 14 years old my parents took my sister and I on a family holiday to Portugal, during which i managed to contract an apocalyptic case of amoebic dysentery. Safe to say that given a choice of repeating said near death experience and having to sit through another showing of Transformers: Age Of Extinction – I’ll happily take a screaming dose of the trots any day of the week and twice on Sunday.

Unfortunately at cinemas now.

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Author: Will Strong