Million Dollar Baby (2004)- A Quick Capsule Review

Million Dollar Baby (2004)- A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Million Dollar Baby is a great boxing film with a brutal ending that I honestly didn’t see coming.  I have no idea why it’s taken me fifteen years to see Eastwood’s Oscar winning sports film, but seeing it devoid of hype all these years later allowed me to really settle in and enjoy what is a really good film. Eastwood is excellent as the gravelly trainer and Swank really convinces as the from the streets Boxer come good.  If the pay of hurts, it’s became you really bye into the characters.  I probably could have lost the Freeman narration (a  little too Shawshank) but overall this one really does deserve the plaudits.

Best Bit: The title fight

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: Rocky, The Fighter, When We Were Kings

 


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Phil’s Quick Review’s 100 Best Films… #75-51

Phil’s Quick Review’s 100 Best Films… #75-51

A Blog

Part two of our run down of Phil’s Quick Review’s 100 Best Films as chosen by a select team of hosts, podcasters, fans and writers from Ross And Phil Talk Movies, The Smoking Lamb Podcast, Filmsploitation and the Phil’s Quick Review Facebook group.

So here’s numbers 75-51…

 

 

 


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Creed 2 (2018) – A Quick Capsule Review

Creed 2 (2018) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Creed 2 at times is lacking and for sure feels like a step down in quality when compared to the superior Ryan Coogler directed Creed.  That said just the nostalgia and concept alone (Drago’s Kid fights Creeds Kid)  is almost enough to guarantee it being worth a watch and somehow feels like a natural end to the franchise. And let’s be honest – there’s very little meat left on the bones of this story.  We’ve had Creeds Kid, Drago’s kid, Rocky’s Kid, we’ve had come backs and street fights… there’s nothing left to tell and I’m happy with that as, at this rate, Creed 3 could see us step back in to the (fun) but flawed late era Rocky films.

Best Bit: Training Montage

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: Creed, Rocky, Rocky 4, Rocky Balboa 

 


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Fighting With My Family (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Fighting With My Family (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Fighting With My Family follows the standard format of the sports movie almost to the letter.  You’ve seen it in Rocky, The Karate Kid and hell even Cool Runnings.  Underdog get’s their shot at the big time, wobbles, comes through it and ends up beating the odds.  What makes Fighting With My Family stand out from the more run of the mill offerings is the heart on show.  The pitch perfect cast really deliver (yes this is the rare good Vince Vaughn performance), especially Florence Pugh who totally convinces as soon to be WWE wrestler Paige (no spoilers – this is based on a true story) and it’s good to see The Rock as, well, The Rock.  Reminded me of my youth.  The ending almost brought a tear to my eye and whilst the film probably does focus a bit too much on the wrestling side (which could put people off) this is a cracking film and well worth a watch.

Best Bit: Raw debut

Cinema, Stream, Avoid: Cinema

If You Liked this Try: No Holds Barred, Beyond The Mat, The Wrestler

 


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Creed 2 (2018): Review by Grosse Point Geek

Creed 2 (2018): Review by Grosse Point Geek

A Blog

Plot in a nutshell: Newly crowned world heavyweight champion Adonis Creed (Johnson) faces an irresistible challenge by undefeated Russian fighter (and man mountain) Victor Drago (Munteanu)  who just so happens to be the son and boxing protege of one Ivan Drago (big Dolph) who killed Adonis’s father Apollo Creed 33 years previously (see Rocky IV for more).

However, Adonis’ trainer and mentor Rocky Balboa (Stallone) wants nothing to do with it, feeling that Adonis is doing the fight for all the wrong reasons and is likely to get seriously hurt in the process.

To say anymore would spoil it for you but safe to say that if you have seen any of the other Rocky films you can pretty much guess the rest.

 
What worked? Very much like 2015’s Creed, all the performances are absolutely superb – Stallone is of course brilliant as Rocky (in his 8th go around), Johnson is extremely good again as Adonis as is Tessa Thompson as his long term girlfriend Bianca. Munteanu also does very well in what could have been a standard villain role but instead manages to give Viktor a good deal of depth which was very refreshing. Finally Dolph Lundgren is absolutely superb and a total joy to behold returning to his most famous role as Ivan Drago – snotty critics take note  -never let it be said that this guy cant act as he is bloody fantastic here. Lastly the boxing matches are very well staged  – particularly the bruising climactic bout and naturally there’s a great training montage which will have you clapping and cheering.
 
What could have been better? As good as it is this sequel doesn’t quite scale the heights of its 2015 predecessor, the original Rocky or for that matter the sixth entry Rocky Balboa.
Newcomer Steven Caple jr does well in the directors chair but lacks the same raw flair and edge of Ryan Coogler (who takes an executive producer credit here) also for me the filmmakers could have had Stallone and Lundgren share more scenes together and this seemed like a wasted opportunity. Finally the film does drag a bit in the middle somewhat. 
 
Best Scene: What else? The training montage, the big fight between Drago and Creed and naturally THAT music theme.
 
Review summary: Not as bonkers as Rocky IV nor as good as some of the other entries, but despite some shortcomings Creed 2 is a damn good sequel and another great entry in this wonderful and seemingly never ending franchise. 

 


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Podcast: Ross And Phil Talk… The Oscars That Should & Shouldn’t Have Been! EXTENDED

Podcast: Ross And Phil Talk… The Oscars That Should & Shouldn’t Have Been! EXTENDED

Ross and Phil Talk Movies

This episode Ross & Phil Talk… The Oscars That Should & Shouldn’t Have Been!

This episode we jump on the Oscar bandwagon, we give out the very first (and unofficial) Stunt & Action Oscars (the quippyly titled Boscars) and take a look at the best and worst decisions of the academy in our lifetime. All in a special extended 60 minute episode.

Hosted by Award winning Filmmaker Ross Boyask and blogger/writer/failed filmamker Phil Hobden.

Films Discussed: The Departed, The Wolf Of Wall Street, Gladiator, Baby Driver, GI Jane, Brawl In Cell Block 99, Moonlight, Forrest Gump, Goodfellas, Dances With Wolves, Tootsie, Rocky, Room, Titanic, Hacksaw Ridge, Jailbreak, Fate Of The Furious,Trainning Day

#RossAndPhil #RossAndPhilTalkMovies

For more subscribed on iTunes or check out www.philhobden.co.uk

For more on Phil Hobden check out www.philhobden.co.uk
For more on Ross Boyask search @RossBoyask on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook

   

The 25 Best… 70’s Movies!

The 25 Best… 70’s Movies!

Best... Other Cr*p

In our latest regular feature, coming out the first Friday of each month, Phil (of Phil’s Quick Capsule Review)  along with podcaster Josh Morris, Writer Mike Parkin, Grosse Point Geek’s Will Strong and Motion Picture Manic Jamie Robinson breakdown the 25 Best Films Of each major film decade.

This time out: The 70’s. 

The close but no cigar Films: Rollerball, The Omen, Deliverance, Halloween, Invasion Of The Bodysnatchers, Bednobs And Broomsticks, The Outlaw Josey Wales, The Wicker Man, All The Presidents Men, Blazing Saddles, Monty Python And The Holy Grail, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Slapshot

 

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Phil’s Top 5… Sports Underdog Films

Phil’s Top 5… Sports Underdog Films

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: Sports Underdog Films!

 

Close but no cigar: Kingpin, Tin Cup, Million Dollar Baby, Rocky Balboa, Moneyball

 

5 – Bloodsport
Yeah so Dux maybe a martial arts expert, but chased by the military, entering a no hold barred tournament never won by a Westerner  before, the odds are firmly stacked against him.  Love Bloodsport.

 

4 – Cool Runnings
A true (ish) story, Cool Runnings is one of the most unbelievable stories ever told.  Featuring a great cast (including the late John Candy) it’s a heart warming tale.

 

3 – Major League
Cheesy for sure.  But when Wild Thing kicks in, there’s not one person watching the film that doesn’t feel their heart pounding.  Charlie Sheen’s never been better.

 

2 – Rocky
THE sports underdog film, still rating up there as one of the greatest films of it’s time.  An Oscar winner with a career defining performance at it’s core… few top it.

 

1 – The Karate Kid
For me, even more so that Rocky, The Karate Kid is the quintessential sports underdog film.  Greta montages, cheesy music and Elisabeth Shue.  Say no more.

 

 

 

 

Counterpunch – A Quick Capsule Review

Counterpunch – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Counterpunch takes an interesting look at three boxers at different stages in their career – the pro, the Olympic hopeful and the up-and-comer set against the background of a sport whose popularity is on the slide.  It’s an intimate portrayal for sure that, excuse the expression, pulls few punches.  It’s a really interesting documentary and is backed up with opinions from some serious legends such as Sugar Ray , De La Hoya and more.  It’s one flaw is the lack of acknowledgement of MMA as a legit contender to boxing. This aside if you like combat sports this is a must.

Best Bit: It’s a Great Story

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: When We Were Kings, Rocky, Tyson

IMDB Rating: 

 

Author: Phil Hobden

Top 10 Movies Of The 70’s – Motion Picture Maniac

Top 10 Movies Of The 70’s – Motion Picture Maniac

A Blog Motion Picture Maniac

Ah the 70’s, such an odd decade, one we’re looking back on today for its contribution to cinema and the films it gave us, pretending for a moment that the first thing that comes to your mind when someone mentions the 70’s isn’t “oh yes, the time taken for the LSD induced insanity of the 60’s to transform into the cocaine fuelled haze of the 80’s; but I digress, here are the 10 best films of all the 70’s according to my stupid opinion; I really wanted to make it a top 20 if only to include all the well known classics and avoid sparking hatred but what can you do? Here’s hoping counting them as honourable mentions is good enough.


10. Monty Python And The Holy Grail

I tried picking a quote for this one, it couldn’t be done.


9. Alien

My skin still crawls when I think of the chestburster scene.


8. The Godfather

One of the greatest Gangster epics of all time, how can you top it…?


7. The Godfather Part 2

… Oh, that’s how.


6. Watership Down

The bloodiest U rated film of all time – that’s saying something.


5. Days Of Heaven

One of the most well shot films I have ever seen, and hey, Richard Gere can act.


4. Manhattan

My favourite Woody Allen film, just perfect in every way.


3. Badlands

Terrence Malick’s first, and I love his recent works so screw you.


2. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre

Vile, sadistic and ugly – what’s not to love?


1. Star Wars

What can I say except what the hell else was it going to be?

Honourable Mentions:  Aguirre: The Wrath Of God, Jaws, Taxi Driver, The Exorcist, The Life Of Brian, Duel, Dawn Of The Dead, Apocalypse Now, Saturday Night Fever, Rocky, A Clockwork Orange, Assault On Precinct 13, Close Encounters Of The Third Kind, Annie Hall, Salo Or The 120 Days Of Sodom