Killer Klowns From Outta Space (1988) –  A ’31 Films Of Halloween’ Quick Capsule Review

Killer Klowns From Outta Space (1988) – A ’31 Films Of Halloween’ Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Killer Klowns may sound like a cheap 80’s low budget horror film (which to be fair it is) BUT it offers far more invention and creativity than you would expect from a film made for peanuts and directed by a trio of brothers who have done little of note since.   The basic premise of Alien clowns killing people in a small town is silly enough but the charm in which is does it and the creative use of clown tropes makes this far more enable that it has any right to have and oddly stands up well over 30 years later.  One to stream for sure (now on Netflix UK).

Best Bit: Shadow Puppets

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: Ticks, The Blob, Critters

 


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Shaun the Sheep (2015) – A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

Shaun the Sheep (2015) – A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
What a lovely surprise.  Shaun The Sheep is a joy – a laugh out loud, charming, heart warming smash from Ardman…  the studio that can do no wrong.  A film that will appeal to kids and adults alike, there’s no reason NOT to watch this.  Great cast, amazing animation and hysterical set pieces… Top 5 of 2015 so far.

Best Bit: All of it!

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Buy

If You Liked this Try: Despicable Me 2, Wallace & Gromit Curse Of The Warerabbit, The Book Of Life

 


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X-Men Days Of Future Past (2014) – A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

X-Men Days Of Future Past (2014) – A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
This is a strange one.  Whilst the film is undoubtedly excellently made and is now considered by most to be one of the two best X-Men films (with X2 no doubt) I left the cinema somewhat underwhelmed.  Apart from a few strong sequences (notably the Quicksilver/ Magneto Rescue), the far more interesting future world is sacrificed for a 70’s set linear tale that offers little action but is heavy on the talking.  And whilst it shouldn’t, the eve growing inconsistencies in the X-Men time line is starting to really grate. So overall competent but nothing we haven’t been, better, elsewhere.

Best Bit: Quicksilver

Buy, Rent, Stream, Borrow: Rent

If You Liked this Try: X-Men Days Of Future Past, X-Men 2, The Avengers

 

 


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Godzilla (2014)- A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

Godzilla (2014)- A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Gareth Edwards’s second film as a director sees him once again dealing with ‘monsters’ but this time he dares to tread where many more experienced directors have failed and take on the might of Godzilla.  And you know what?  For the most part he pulls it off.  What Edwards does best is to strike the right balance between the ample destruction and the people.  Where as Zack Snider’s destruction porn is all about falling building, Edwards makes it about the characters.  Where as Michael Bay reveals in explosions, Edwards reveals in human drama.  This doesn’t mean that the film doesn’t have it’s wham! Bam! moments – it does and in spades – but they mean something. So the story isn’t perfect and the film uses the ‘hint’ reveal a few too many times, but Godzilla does so much right that you can forgive it a few small issues.

Best Bit: Monster Smack down.

Buy, Rent, Stream, Borrow: Buy

If You Liked this Try: Pacific Rim, Jurassic Park, Monster

 


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The Secret Life Of Pets (2016) – A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

The Secret Life Of Pets (2016) – A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Secret Life of Pets is basically Toy Story without Pixar.   That’s not a bad thing of course but it does feel like somewhat of a retread of the much better Pixar classic.  It’s charming, funny and (occasionally) smart.  It’s also not as funny as it should have been, not as clever as you want it to be and not as charming as it thinks it is… which is a shame as the film has bucket loads of potential. Ultimately the kids will love it, adults with find it witty and it will make money.  Hopefully of the sequel they can develop the bits that worked best into a what could be a comedy gem.

Best Bit: When the owners leave…

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: Toy Story, Despicable Me 2, Toy Story 3

 


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Interstellar (2014) – A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

Interstellar (2014) – A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Man did the though of this film leave me cold.  A trailer that did little for me and hype that bordered on ridiculous. It felt like the 5 star reviews had already been written.  But a week or so away from the release, sitting down to watch the film I have to say- for the most part the hype was right. This is astounding filmmaking. It’s not perfect – the Nolan’s script is lacking once again with terrible on the nose dialogue and large chunks of plot dump, the ending is pure Spielberg at it’s worst and the film because of it ends up being longer than it needed to be.  HOWEVER this is a film that demands to be seen on the big screen (the biggest you can find actually) , has visual FX that create some of the most believable worlds ever seen on screen and has note perfect after note perfect performance.  Oh and the sound.  Just… wow. So overall whilst not the 5 star classic certain reviewers would have you believe, Nolan delivers probably the best 4 star movie ever and is back on form after the lacklustre Dark Knight Rises.

Best Bit: Matthew McConaughey delivers the goods once again.

Buy, Rent, Stream, Borrow: Buy

If You Liked this Try: Inception, The Dark Knight, Insomnia

 

 


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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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White House Down (2014) – A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

White House Down (2014) – A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
One of 2013’s biggest misses this arrived months after the hit that was Olympus Has Fallen to a chorus of meh!  But I have no idea why because, as an action film, it’s much better that Olympus, has it’s tongue firmly in cheeky and mangoes to deliver whilst never taking itself too seriously.  In fact White House Down is probably one of the best action films of 2013.  No Really.

Best Bit: President of the USA + Rocket luncher.

Rent, Borrow, Buy, Stream: Buy

If you liked this try: Olympus Has Fallen, Die Hard With A Vengeance, Under Siege

 


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Grimsby (2016)-  A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

Grimsby (2016)- A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Critically Sacha Baron Cohen’s worst performing film to date, Grimsby in general however seems to have connected far better with the fans.  Why?  Well because its’ actually pretty funny.  Okay so it doesn’t hit the heights of Borat or Bruno, but there is a hell of a lot to like here as Baron Cohen pushes beyond the levels of decency in what could feature at least two of the most gross out sequences ever put in a comedy film.  Oddly behind its knob gags and The Sun level humour there’s actually quite an interesting ideas about where you come from and the meaning of family at play here, something that most critics missed (that said it’s easy to do under the weight of penis related jokes).  So occasionally clever than it thinks, frequently low brow but smashed the Kermode six laugh test with ease.

Best Bit: Elephants.

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: Borat, The Dictator, Bruno

 


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Cinderella (2014) – A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

Cinderella (2014) – A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
As old school and classic Disney as you can get, Kenneth Branagh’s retelling of the classic Cinderella is a charming, funny and beautiful film that will be loved by older children and just about tolerated by most parents!  Actually that’s pretty harsh – the filmmaking craft alone on display here is worth watching (sumptuous visuals, glamorous clothing and stunning sets), as are the central  performances of Lily James, Cate Blanchett and Game Of Throne’s Richard Madden.   And in fact whilst it’s pitched, and often feels like classic straight Disney the Cinderella as presented here is no wallflower, instead a strong, independent Disney princess up there with some of the best of them.  So overall whilst you’ll be dragged along by the kids, you’ll probably end up secret quite enjoying it.  I did.

Best Bit: The Ball

Buy, Rent, Stream, Borrow: Buy (for the kids)

If You Liked this Try: Enchanted, In The Woods, Maleficent

 

 


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