Phil’s End Of Year Awards 2019

Phil’s End Of Year Awards 2019

2019: In Review Quick Review Year In Review

So 2018 is almost over and it’s that time a year again where everyone reflects back on their best and worst films of the year.  So we’ve covered our best and our worst films of 2018, so before we look at the films coming up in 2019 here’s my ‘Alternative’ End of Year Awards for 2018…

 

The Most Entertainingly Bad Film Of The Year Award…

 

Oh god make them stop award!
John Travolta. Nicolas Cage. Bruce Willis. And others tarnishing their reputation with direct to streaming/DVD drivel.

 

 

Surprise of The Year Award…
Booksmart. The best Non-Joker film of 2019.

 

 

Performance Of The Year Award…
Joe Pesci, making a comeback and smashing it out the park in The Irishman

 

 

 

Yup, I’m over them Award…
Hobbs & Shaw. The Bromanace that just didn’t have legs.

 

 

Oh god HOW long…
The Irishman, Rise Of SkyWalker, Endgame, Once Upon A Time In Hollywood…

 

 

 

Okay so he CAN still make a great film...
Quentin Tarantino for Once Upon A Time In Hollywood.

 

 

Oh that came out THIS year? Award…
Men in Black: International and Godzilla: King of the Monsters

 

 

We like you but maybe take a year off…
Ryan Reynolds. We get it.  But Maybe just a little less next year? 

 

 

Come In Your time is Up Award…
Will Smith. And Lee. Gemini Man was terrible.

 

 

Trailer Of The Year Award…
Top Gun: Maverick (Teaser)

 

 

Let Down of The Year/How The Hell Did they Fuck THAT Up? Award
Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw. It SHOULD have been epic.  It was okay.That film should NEVER have been okay.

 

 

Emperors new clothes Award…
Ad Astra

 

 

Oh Bollocks! Turns out that was 2018 after all…
Holmes & Watson

 

 

Cameo of The Year Award…
John McClane in Lego Movie 2

 

 

The Oscars only like REALLY famous dead people award for missing out other stars who died Award…
Dick Miller, Stanley Donen, Carol Channing, Gary Kurtz

 

 

The Poof That Award Shows DONT Suck Award…
Spider-Man wins an Oscar!

 

 

The Proof That Award Shows Suck Award…
Black Panther is the best Marvel film ever because it was nominated for Best Picture.  Urm. Okay.

 

 

WHY GOD WHY? Award…
Hellboy. Holmes & Watson. Dark Phoenix. Godzilla. Bad films we’re REALLY bad this year

 

 

Less Is, Er, Less Award…
Disney.  We know you own everything.  But maybe occasionally let someone else have a film on at the cinema?

 

 

The Year of Good Sequels Goes To…
2019 for Happy Death Day 2U, Glass, Rambo: Last Blood, Avengers: Endgame, Spiderman: Far From home, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World, John Wick: Chapter 3, Toy Story 4, Jumanji: The Next Level

 

 

Remakes Suck! Award Returns from retirement for…
Child’s Play (2019), Pet Sematary (2019), Rabid (2019)

 

 

Films That SHOULD have been on my 2018 List’s but I Hadn’t Seen…
The Domestics, After The Screaming Stops, They Shall Not Grow Old, Assassination Nation, Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse, Free Solo, The Last Movie Star, Incredibles 2, Wonder (2017)

 

 

Next time: Phil’s Look at 2020 and a look back at my 2019 predictions… 

 


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Phil’s Best To Worst: Star Wars Movies! (Updated with The Rise Of Skywalker)

Phil’s Best To Worst: Star Wars Movies! (Updated with The Rise Of Skywalker)

A Blog

Listed from best to Attack Of The Clones, Phil, of Phil’s Quick Capsule Review, breaks down a film related subject in order of his own personal enjoyment.  This time out: Star Wars Films!

 

The Rules: So I’ve excluded the throwaway 80’s Ewok kids films here as well as the Christmas special as it’s far from cannon.  So just the main 12 Star Wars films and the feature length Clone Wars movie.

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BEST: Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back

Empire Strikes Back is a franchise high point for many reasons but MOSTLY as it’s the Star Wars film Lucas had least to do with, instead putting the film into the hands of Kasdan.  It shows – more mature, darker and edgier it still boasts one of cinemas best twist endings and adds depth to the cut out characters from Star Wars.  Essential.

 

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2. Star Wars: A New Hope

Groundbreaking, epic and genre defining space sagas don’t get much better than this. A lean plot, some edge of your seat action sequences and THAT ending make Star Wars a simply outstanding film.

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3. Star Wars: The Return Of The Jedi

I love Return of The Jedi.  Growing up it’s the Star Wars film I watched the most (it certainly has the best action of any Star Wars films).  Years on the excitement still holds but there are shadows of the failings of the prequels here also (Ewok’s for some but mostly the convoluted plotting, the fact everyone knows or is related to the Skywalkers and the weak dialogue).  Still the final space battle and the lightsabre duel stand out as the franchises two best moments

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4. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Yup that hit the spot.  Rogue One, a war story, a story of hope and overcoming overwhelming odds.  And thats just the making of it.  Yet it works.  It works SO well in fact that it’s jumped to No4 on this list.

 

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5. Star Wars: The Last Jedi 

Delivering a new style of Star Wars film, The Last Jedi makes some bold choices (and some silly ones) to take Star Wars in a fresh new direction that will finally allow it to move past it’s Skywalker focus story and firmly land the legacy on the shoulders of some new characters. It doesn’t all work but when it does it’s some of them most spectacular Star Wars yet!

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6. Star Wars: The Force Awakens  

After the much maligned prequels, the first Star Wars film to be Lucas free felt very much like a homage as it retooled A New Hope’s story and gave us a “Best of” compilation.  That said it was well done, set up an array of exciting new characters and gave us well hell of a twist when you know what happens to you know who.  Not as good as we wanted it to be but a massive step up from the prequels.

 

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7. Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker 

Look The Rise Of Skywalker is a mess for sure, the whole trilogy lacking a cohesive drawn out narrative from the start and this for sure plays out as a massive negative here as JJ struggles to pull it all together.  It also is hampered by Carrie Fisher’s death, something that causes narrative issues.  BUT these points aside it’s a good film – spectacular action sequences, solid twists and turns and some great character work by the core cast.

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8. Solo : A Star Wars Story 

Solo is good.  It’s just a victim of the production issues that plagued it from the start.  The cast are mostly superb (Clarke isn’t sadly) but the film runs out of steam as it tries to hit every Solo touch point referenced in previous Star Wars films.  Good but could have been better

 

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9. Star Wars: The Revenge Of The Sith

The best of a very bad bunch, Sith at least had a darkness to it that the franchise had avoided previously.  It’s still shouldered with terrible acting, a plot that steps on the original trilogy more than it ever needed to and some terrible FX work BUT it’s not Attack of The Clones.

 

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10. Star Wars: The Clone Wars (2005)

From little acorns big Oak Trees grow and that’s very much the case here.  See the Star Wars: the Clone Wars animated film has nuggets of promise that would later be fulfilled by the excellent TV show but the feature length pilot instead gets itself weighed down in trying to please too many people and ends up being a bit of a mess.

 

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11. Star Wars: The Phantom Menace 

Deeply flawed, badly plotted and criminally dull at times this film is saved by some excellent visuals (although dated FX), the pod race and the final duel between Jedi & Sith.  It overplays it’s hand throughout however and the Jedi prove to be rather dull as leading characters.  Less said about Jake Lloyd the better.

 

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WORST: Star Wars: Attack of The Clones 

A real low for the series and one of the worst sequels ever made, Attack of The Clones gets almost nothing right.  If A terrible story that makes no sense, a boring end battle where CGI things shoot CGI things and the blowing of one of Star Wars most talked about moments (The Clone Wars!!!) weren’t enough you also have one of the most wooden central performances ever (helped by some of the worst dialogue ever).  It’s a bad film. And one to be avoided.

 

 


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Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) – A Skywalker Saga Quick Capsule Review

Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) – A Skywalker Saga Quick Capsule Review

Collections Quick Review Star Wars

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
So the Last Jedi is good.  On balance it could well be the best true Star Wars film since Jedi and It’s fair to say when it delivers it knocks it out the park – The opening, Rey/Ren, The finale.  Even better watching it back on home video, the misses that bothered me first time around (The long middle section, Star Wars Casinos, the punking out of not one but two characters set up for great things but cast aside) actually made a lot more sense.  It’s still far to say that a better script could have made this up there with Empire, but even though The Last Jedi flirts with greatness it still doesn’t QUITE land it.  This all said it was a really entertaining film, with lots of surprises along the way and twists and turns you don’t quite expect that lived up to expectations and hype.  Hamill is great, Fisher gives one of her best performances and the support cast are mostly exceptional.  Where to next is anyones guess but the final film in this trilogy will have a hell of a job beating this. Recommended.

Best Bit: Finally! Lightsaber action!

If You Liked this Try: Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back , Rogue One : A Star Wars Story

 


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Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015) – A Skywalker Saga Quick Capsule Review

Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015) – A Skywalker Saga Quick Capsule Review

Collections Quick Review Star Wars

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
The danger is always that when you hype up a film to such a degree that it can only ever disappoint.  And episode 7 its probably the most hyped film ever.  To live up to this hype It would have to be special.  It would have to deliver.  And you know what – for the most part it does.  The Force Awakens is the Star Wars films I wanted.  Great new characters, throw backs to the great characters of old, a simple story, intrigue, a great bad guy and a plot that doesn’t feed you every little detail.  It’s not perfect – far from it – BUT in spirit and execution this film delivers.  It feels like a Star Wars film. It looks like a Star Wars film.  It IS a Star Wars Films.

Best Bit: BB8!

If You Liked this Try: Star Wars: A New Hope, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back 

 


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Star Wars: Return of the Jedi (1983) – A Skywalker Saga Quick Capsule Review

Star Wars: Return of the Jedi (1983) – A Skywalker Saga Quick Capsule Review

Collections Quick Review Star Wars

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Return of the Jedi isn’t the best Star Wars film.  That will always be Empire.  But it’s certainly the most watchable (and one I watched the most).  See Jedi is pure popcorn fodder – full of space battles, plot twists, ground wars and lightsaber fights.  The cast here are super comfortable, clearly loving  their roles (well maybe not Guinness) and proxy director Marquand delivers high action from the start. In this current version Lucas’ changes remain mostly in and around Jabba’s palace and still stand out like a sore thumb.  Like most of his additions they just feel so unneeded.  Other changes are okay but I think we all could do with out Hayden Christensen anywhere near this trilogy.  In short – despite Lucas’ best efforts to ruin his films, Jedi remains a perfect send off for the original trilogy. Fun, action packed and full of Ewoks.  Yes I went there… I love the Ewoks.  Thank god then in the end it was a trap!

Best Bit: Attack of the Death star 

If You Liked this Try: Star Wars: A New Hope, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back 

 


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Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back (1980) – A Skywalker Saga Quick Capsule Review

Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back (1980) – A Skywalker Saga Quick Capsule Review

Collections Quick Review Star Wars

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
The Empire Strikes Back is gritty, dark, challenging and bloody brilliant. Set after the events of A New Hope, it starts to put the pieces together that would form the core mythology at the heart of this franchise.  It’s a shame then that a LOT of those reveals have been ruined by the prequels.  Rewatching Empire the iconic ‘I Am Your Father’ moment becomes shrug rather than the fall of the chair moment it was before.  That said the film is still amazing (escape from Hoth, Cloud City, Fett and more) and even Lucas’ 90’s changes don’t ruin it too much. The Empire Strikes Back is, simply put, the best FILM of this series.

Best Bit: Hoth!

If You Liked this Try: Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Wars: Return of The Jedi, Star Wars: A New Hope

 


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Star Wars: A New Hope (1977) – A Skywalker Saga Quick Capsule Review

Star Wars: A New Hope (1977) – A Skywalker Saga Quick Capsule Review

Collections Hall of Fame Quick Review Star Wars

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review
Star Wars: A New Hope was my first major film crush.  It was unlike anything I’d ever seen before (Okay I as probably 4 when I saw it so that’s not saying much) but man 40+ years later it’s still one of the greatest films ever made. From the characters ( A princess, a rogue, a knight) to the set pieces ( escape the Death Star, The final assault, the duel), to the music, editing and everything else… its a film that doesn’t put a foot wrong and is impossible not to love. Star Wars: A New Hope launched a franchise, a media empire and redefined cinema for generations to come.

Best Bit: Escaping the Death Star

If You Liked this Try: Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, Star Wars: The Return Of The Jedi, Star Wars: The Force Awakens

 


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Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith (2005) – A Skywalker Saga Quick Capsule Review

Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith (2005) – A Skywalker Saga Quick Capsule Review

Collections Quick Review Star Wars

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith is the best of a bad bunch.  I know that’s kinda damning with faint praise but it’s true – the prequels just do not hold up.  Shonky effects are forgivable (just) but shonky acting, direction, script and story telling just isn’t.  In his desire to make a nice 6 film arc Lucas struggles to put all the pieces back together and rather than making things neat, leaves as many questions as he answers.  Yup it’s darker (killing kids… really?) but it’s also sillier with little cohesion between old and new trilogies.  So overall it’s still pretty weak it’s just not as bad as Attack of The Clones or Phantom Menace.  And I guess we can be a touch thankful for that at least… 

Best Bit: Nooooooo! (Joking – probably the opening attack)

Worth A Rewatch: Not overly 

If You Liked this Try: Star Wars: A New Hope, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story , Star Wars: the Clone Wars (TV)

 


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Star Wars: Attack of the Clones (2002) – A Skywalker Saga Quick Capsule Review

Star Wars: Attack of the Clones (2002) – A Skywalker Saga Quick Capsule Review

Collections Quick Review Star Wars

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
So three things stand out rewatching Attack of The Clones.  1. It’s actually paced pretty good.  For a two hour plus film I really didn’t want to rewatch it moves quite fast.  That’s where the positives end.  2.  It has one of the worst scripts I have ever seen on screen.  And I’ve seen (and worked on) some utter Bobbins.  3. Hayden Christensen is by far the worst actor in this film.  He truly stinks up every scene he goes near and has ZERO chemistry with Portman or McGregor.

Look Attack of the Clones was always the weakest of a bad bunch (the prequel trilogy).  But rewatching it I’m reminded just how bad the film is.  The CGI effects, acting, script, dire-logue, direction… all so amateur.  Also in the wider context of the Star Wars films it just makes no sense.  Example (of MANY): Skywalker/Vader met and in fact was related to the family Kenobi would later HIDE Skywalker’s son with.  Right next door to his old home. On his old planet.  Ugh.  Thankfully the film throws enough action at the screen that you don’t notice but man this is not a joy to watch again and has aged badly.

Best Bit: The Clones finally attack.

If You Liked this Try: Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge Of The Sith, Star Wars: A New Hope, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

 


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Star Wars: The Phantom Menace (1999)  – A Skywalker Saga Quick Capsule Review

Star Wars: The Phantom Menace (1999) – A Skywalker Saga Quick Capsule Review

Collections Quick Review Star Wars

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Look The Phantom Menace gets a LOT of stick.  It deserves it as well. The film that reignited a dormant (at least in Film) Franchise for a new generation remains very hard film to love.  From rarely mentioned since midi-chlorians, to the lack of force ghosts, bad acting (yup Lloyd I’m looking at you), JaJa bloody Binks, Poor CGI and, yup, trade disputes… Lucas went out of his way to make the simple, lean Star Wars franchise quite baggy. Oh and totally pointless as well hen you reflect back on it.  Yet… The Phantom Menace still has a certain something. The pod race, the final battle, even at times the Jedi.  Oh and THAT lightsaber fight.  It’s not much mind but next to Attack Of The Clones this is a freakin’ masterpiece.  A necessary evil then on a road to a MUCH better trilogy…

Best Bit: Pod Race

If You Liked this Try: Star Wars: A New Hope, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back 

 


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