Spenser Confidential (2020) – A Quick Capsule Review

Spenser Confidential (2020) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
If ever there was a film didn’t know what it wanted to be then Spenser Confidential is that movie.  Is it a knock around comedy?  A hard bitten private eye thriller? A buddy action movie?  The problem is by trying to be all three it fails to do anything that makes it stand out.  It doesn’t help that with Wahlberg as your lead you already lack that charismatic heart of your film. Wahlberg on a bad day is… well pretty bad.  It’s not terrible – there’s a few nice action scenes – but it just doesn’t do anything new or interesting to grab your attention.  Welcome to the world of Netflix originals then…

Best Bit: Big Rig arrives

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: Payback, Lethal Weapon, The Other Guys

 


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American Factory (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

American Factory (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
A compelling documentary that looks at the reopening of an old General Motors factory by a Chinese billionaire and the inevitable culture class that follows.  What’s most scary here is how quickly the two different worlds fail to gel and the openness and honesty in which the documentary dig’s deep into this.  Whilst Netflix original narrative films often fail to deliver, its documentaries are some of the best out there and once again they hit big with the Oscar nominated American Factory.  Stream it now on Netflix.

Best Bit: Lazy Americans

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: Icarus, 13th, Fyre

 


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Eli (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Eli (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Eli is another Netflix Original horror in what ended up being a pretty busy year for the genre.  And, much like many Originals, it ended up being more than a little divisive. What starts as a haunted house movie, ends up being something quite different as the film massively jumps the shark in the final act.   Look I love bat shit mental films.  Color Our Of Space is the perfect example of that.  or Mandy.  But at least both of those made sense in their own construct.  Eli goes off at such a tangent that you kinda wonder if it was two films stitched together as one. Either way it’s a shame as the first hour or so it’s properly creepy and does a great job of make you feel super uncomfortable.  So again another mixed bag from Netflix that’s JUST worthy of a watch.

Best Bit: Slow Build…

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: The Perfection, In The Tall Grass, The Hole in the Ground

 


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In The Shadow Of The Moon (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

In The Shadow Of The Moon (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
In The Shadow Of The Moon starts off as a serial killer thriller and quickly spirals into something quite different. Okay so it’s far from perfect but at least it plays with some new concepts and ideas as the story soldiers on through decades after decades even if when the ending finally arrives it is a touch unsatisfying, with one particular turn being pretty obvious early on.  But overall In The Shadow Of The Moon is a pretty decent diversion, with a  good cast and some solid direction.

Best Bit: Ah it’s THAT film

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream (Netflix)

If You Liked this Try: Primer, Predestination, Twelve Monkeys 

 


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6 Underground (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

6 Underground (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
6 Underground is a hot mess of a film with one of the worst and most unwatchable opening action sequences in recent memory.  Get beyond THAT car chase however and actually there’s a pretty fun action film with some solid set pieces, a handful of genuinely great free running sequences and a winning (if somewhat familiar) central performance from Ryan Reynolds.  It’s also a film that showcase the best and worst of it’s director Michael Bay – from poor dialogue and OTT acting (and a dash of sexism) to beautifully shot action, excellent use of slow mo and some top notch ideas (the magnet for one).  This gives me hope that Bad Boys for Life may actually be fun… so 6 Underground will not be for everyone but it won me over in the end.

Best Bit: Boat + Magnet

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream (Netflix)

If You Liked this Try: Bad Boys for Life, Bad Boys, The Rock

 


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The Great Hack (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

The Great Hack (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Eye opening, scary, complex and fascinating… The Great Hack dives deep into the Facebook/Cambridge Analytica scandal with a sharp eye and unflinching dedication to its subject.  As the realisation of how deep and insidious this whole thing was dawns, you cant help but feel dirty and betrayed.  It packed a huge gut punch for sure.   In short it’s pretty terrifying as it details the exploitation of personal data on the internet by those you trusted to keep it safe.  You’ll never want to use facebook again!

Best Bit: Not best but knowing you can never trust any company again ever

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream (Netflix)

If You Liked this Try: Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened, We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists, Citizenfour

 


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El Camino : A Breaking Bad Movie (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

El Camino : A Breaking Bad Movie (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
El Camino : A Breaking Bad Movie picks up seconds after the end of the much loved TV series.  Yup the cast have aged somewhat but that’s suspicion of disbelief aside there’s a lot to enjoy here.  Was it an essential addition to the near perfect TV show? No. In fact if you never watched El Camino you’d not be missing that much BUT if you want some serious fan service and a bow tied around the end of the show once and for all then this is the film for you.  It’s got cameos, call backs as well as a few surprises along the way and all in all it’s great fun.  One for the fans.

Best Bit: THAT cameo.  Oh and Forster’s last movie role.

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream (Netflix)

If You Liked this Try: Breaking Bad, Better Call Saul, The Sopranos

 


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Gerald’s Game (2017) – A ’31 Films Of Halloween’ Quick Capsule Review

Gerald’s Game (2017) – A ’31 Films Of Halloween’ Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Gerald’s Game is yet another 2017 Stephen King adaptation.  This one sits between the most excellent I.T and the less than excellent (but still not as bad as everyone says!) The Dark Tower. With some strong central performances, a tight story and a nippy run time it works well, even if the tones and story is a little bit familiar.   Another strong Netflix original…

Best Bit: Netflix Hits again

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream (Netflix)

If You Liked this Try: IT, The Stand, Fifty Shades Of Grey, Misery

 


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The Bad Batch (2017) – A Quick Capsule Review

The Bad Batch (2017) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
The Bad Batch is crazy.  From insane Keanu Reaves extended cameos, to crazy Jim Carrey appliances to just its central premise, long run time and trippy middle section… it just makes no sense.  It’s Spacehunter: Adventures in the Forbidden Zone meets Mad Max meets The Hills Have Eyes meets pretty much anything nuts you can think of.  Its also not amazing and far from essential but it’s also not THAT bad. In fact it passed the time quite well even if there are probably a 100 better things to watch.  Watch it for the eclectic cast, for the best audition to direct a Mad Max movie you have ever seen or just because you have a two hour train ride with time to kill.

Best Bit: Legs. Arms. Lunch.

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream (Netflix)

If You Liked this Try: Max Max: Fury Road, Spacehunter: Adventures in the Forbidden Zone, Drifter 

 


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Point Blank (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Point Blank (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Another day, another poorly reviews and received Netflix ‘original’.  This time out is a remake of the 2010 French film of the same name starring Marvel’s own Frank Grillo and Anthony Mackie. And nope it doesn’t suck as much or as bad as the critics will have you think.  In fact it’s a pretty easy to watch, ultimately forgettable romp that ticks all the usual hardboiled crime film cliches almost as if it’s working from a tick list.  What makes the film work is the paring of Grillo and Mackie who both have buckets of charisma.  So it’s a decent way to pass an evening. Nothing more or less.

Best Bit: Always Frank Grillo

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: À Bout Portant, Payback, Man On fire

 


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