Ford V Ferrari (aka Le Mans ’66) – A Quick Capsule Review

Ford V Ferrari (aka Le Mans ’66) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Le Mans ’66 tells the story of the battle between Ford & Ferrari for dominance at the famed race event in the 60’s.  Well actually that’s not right because really it’s the battle between Shelby and Ford that sits at the heart of this true life tale. It’s a great story – full of twists, turns and surprises.  It’s also a damn good film as well, with director James Mangold once again delivering a tense (but never over the top) film that allows Damon and Bale to really shine.  Once you get past Bale’s accent. For a film closer to there hours than two it flies by and the racing is everything you ant it to be. Had I seen this in 2020 it would have hit my best of teh year list for sure.

Best Bit: Le Mans

Cinema, Stream, Avoid: Cinema

If You Liked this Try: Senna, Rush, Le Mans

 


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Phil’s Best & Worst Films Of… The Decade (2010-2019)

Phil’s Best & Worst Films Of… The Decade (2010-2019)

Quick Review Year In Review

So this is a look back at all the films I gave the coveted Best & Worst awards each year to from the previous decade, as we look back at the previous 10 years of movies.  Have opinions changed?  Actually on a few… yes.

All in my very humble opinion…

 

BEST Films Of The Decade… (By Year)

2010 – The Social Network
2011 – Hugo 
2012 – Argo (Should have been: Skyfall)
2013 – Rush
2014 – The Wolf Of Wall Street
2015 – Whiplash (Should have been: Mad Max: Fury Road)
2016 – The Nice Guys (Should have been: Kubo And The Two Strings)
2017 – Baby Driver (Should have been: T2 Trainspotting)
2018 – Coco (Should have been TIED with: Mission Impossible: Fallout)
2019 – Joker

BEST FILM Of the Decade: Mad Max: Fury Road


Honourable Mentions:
American: the Bill Hicks Story, Senna, Skyfall, Zero Dark Thirty, Life Itself, Inside Out, Kubo And The Two Strings, T2 Trainspotting, Mission Impossible: Fallout

 

WORST Films Of The Decade… (By Year)

2010 – Skyline
2011 – Transformers 3: Dark Of The Moon
2012 – Ghost Rider 2: Spirit Of Vengeance
2013 – The Host
2014 – Transformers 4: Age Of Extinction 
2015 – Fifty Shades Of Grey
2016 – Point Break (2016)
2017 – Fifty Shades Darker
2018 – The Cloverfield Paradox (Should have been Holmes & Watson)
2019 – The Dead Don’t Die 

WORST FILM Of the Decade: Transformers 4: Age Of Extinction 

 

Dis-Honourable Mentions: 44 Inch Chest, Sucker Punch, Cold Light of Day, The Worlds End, Sex Tape, He Who Dares 2: Downing Street Down, Central Intelligence, Transformers The Last Knight, Fifty Shades Freed

 

 


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Williams – A Quick Capsule Review

Williams – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Williams is a fascinating look at a the life of driven, talented and flawed icon who has endured heartbreak & pain alongside success and admiration in a career unlike any other.  Frank Williams comes across as both warm and standoffish in this intimate portrayal of a man who refuses to be defined by his injury. With interviews including key figures from his life, his family and friends this is a must for fans of both motor racing and F1 alike.

Best Bit: Clare Williams reads to Frank.

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream (Netflix)

If You Liked this Try: Senna, Rush, 1: Life on the limit

IMDB Rating: 

 

Author: Phil Hobden

My life In Movies… (Best Film from EVERY Year I’ve Been Alive)

My life In Movies… (Best Film from EVERY Year I’ve Been Alive)

Best... Other Cr*p

A look at the BEST films, one from each of my years on this planet…. (Yes ’86 and ’84 was impossible to split!)

… And yes a few do differ from my Annual ‘Film of The Year’.  Hindsight is a wonderful thing!!!

The 70’s

1976 – The Outlaw Josey wales
1977 – Star Wars
1978 – Dawn Of The Dead
1979 – Alien

The 80’s

1980 – Empire Strikes Back
1981 – Raiders Of The Lost Ark
1982 – The Thing
1983 – The Return Of The Jedi

1984 – Ghostbusters/ Gremlins
1985 – The Goonies

1986 – Aliens/ Ferris Bueller’s Day Off/ Top Gun
1987 – The Lost Boys

1988 – Die Hard
1989 – Tango & Cash

The 90’s

1990 – Goodfellas
1991 – Terminator 2 Judgement Day
1992 – Reservoir Dogs
1993 – The Nightmare Before Christmas
1994 – Pulp Fiction

1995 – Heat
1996 – Trainspotting
1997 – Con Air
1998 – Lock Stock & Two Smoking barells
1999 – Fight Club

The 2000’s 

2000 – Snatch
2001 – Black Hawk Down
2002 – 28 days Later
2003 – Love Actually
2004 – Shaun Of The Dead
2005 – Serenity

2006 – Children of Men
2007 – Bourne Ultimatum

2008 – The Dark Knight
2009 – Slumdog Millonaire
2010 – The Social Network

The 10’s 

2011 – Hugo
2012 – Skyfall
2013 – Rush
2014 – Wolf Of Wall Street
2015 – Whiplash
2016 – The Nice Guys

Phil Hobden
Editor – Phil’s Quick Capsule Review

Inferno – A Quick Capsule Review

Inferno – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Oh wow. This was directed by Ron Howard.  He can direct films.  He’s done a few pretty good ones.  In fact Rush from a few years back was awesome.  But here… here I get the impression he may not have been on set much for this one as Inferno is pretty woeful with both Howard and Hanks delivering sub par career low efforts.  And they made Ange;s & Demons.  From a clunky script that is laugh out loud bad TO THE MOST OBVIOUS TWIST EVER, Inferno takes the standard piss poor Dan Brown source material and does nothing to make it better.  In fact in a rare twist the film actually makes it worse.  One to avoid.

Best Bit: THE TWIST. The film plays it like a surprise.  You won’t be.

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Avoid

If You Liked this Try: The DaVinci Code, Angels & Demons, Rush

IMDB Rating: 

 

Author: Phil Hobden

Blog: A Walk Among The Tombstones- A Quick Capsule Review

Blog: A Walk Among The Tombstones- A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
So, expecting an action packed Taken style movie? Well if you are re-engage those exceptions because AWATT is NOT that film. What it is is a solid, if unspectacular and a little over long, broken cop thriller very much in the vein of Narc or Rush.  Just not as good. What’s good?  Neeson is solid and well honed in this type of role nowadays and whilst he doesn’t put in a great deal of effort, he’s not phoning it in either. Some good support roles, a few gruesome moments and an interesting story JUST ABOUT compensate for a film that could do with a pace increase at times and a shorter run time.  So… not bad by any stretch but also in no way a classic.

Best Bit: Beareded Hobo Neeson

Buy, Rent, Stream, Borrow: Rent

If You Liked this Try: Rush, Narc, Non Stop

 

Author: Phil Hobden

Best Film of 2013: Rush

Best Film of 2013: Rush

Best & Worst Quick Review
The Review:
 In over 60 years of official competition, there have only ever been a handful of movies about what is one of the worlds most popular sports.  It’s not through lack of inherent drama – just the last few seasons of F1 alone we’ve seen a no hoper team come from being scrapped to winning the world title, a championship won on the last corner of the final race of the season and racers walk away from what should have been life ending crashes.  
But whether it be the subject matter often being almost too extraordinary or the fear that recreating the sport on screen could almost be as expensive as running a team for a year, in general cinema has steered clear of the sport.  So with RUSH arriving in cinemas, from Imagine Entertainment, Working Title Films and in the hands of director Ron Howard, have they achieved what few had dared challenge previous and created a heart pounding thrill ride of a movie or was the task too much for what is a modestly budgeted British film from a company best known for making Hugh Grant rom coms?RUSH tells the extraordinary story of the 1976 Formula 1 world championship, and the merciless 1970s rivalry between the cool, calm playboy Brit James Hunt and methodical, driven Austrian Niki Lauda. Starring Chris ‘Thor’ Hemsworth and Daniel Bruhl, director and former Happy Days star Ron Howard has crated a film of such brilliance that, much like documentary Senna, it transcends interest of the sport it focus on and presents what is one of the best performed and most gripping stories of the year so far.  It helps that this truly was a fascinating year – from Lauda’s near fatal crash, to behind the scenes political manoeuvrings and some of the most fierce on track racing ever witnessed in the sport, a year if someone wrote it down without the facts to back it up you’d probably never believe it.But is this anything more than a love letter to the glory days of a sport now controlled by corporations and banks?
 Yes, in fact whilst the racing is expertly handled and form some of the films most intense moments, it’s the story of two men’s bitter rivalry (and friendship) that sit firmly at the heart of this story.  Hemsworth, who no doubt will set hearts a fluttering all bare chest  and flowing haired,  proves he more than a man with a large hammer and tights matching his charismatic subject matter James Hunt smile for smile.  At the same time not to be outdone Bruhl, whose credits mostly include European films few have seen other than a turn in QT’s Inglorious Basterds delivers a performance layered and emotionally grabbing that you just know he will rightfully end up with a trophy cabinet of awards come silly season next year.   The positives don’t stop there: From the lovingly recreated period detail (and not just the numerous F1 cars dragged out if retirement and museums to once again roar for the crowds), to the sense of danger at every turn, Howard and his team recreate the era almost perfectly and when the cars do race, the film pulls no punches.  Actual arial photography taken at the time, mixed seamlessly with some of the most innovative racing cinematography ever placed on screen, every gear change, every button push is a thing of beauty.  RUSH’s cinematography (by Anthony Dod Mantle) is genuinely a thing of beauty and does well to hide what is, by all accounts, a low budget by Hollywood terms.
 But don’t forget this ISNT a Hollywood movie.  It may be directed by Ron Howard but this is a Working Title film.  A British film.  Okay so at $40million USD it’s the biggest film working title have put together, but this is more British that Potter or Bond could ever hope to be.In short RUSH is a directorial triumph and probably Howard’s best movie for some years.Also special note should go to Peter Morgan, writer of The Queen and Frost/Nixon, for a excellent screenplay that allows the story to take shape through the characters whilst allowing the actors enough space to add their own flair to the film.  Is the film perfect? No.  It takes liberties with actual events, being more a story inspired by the truth rather than representing the truth and at times it’s both predictable and obviously when it strays from what is obviously the facts.  But these things rarely matter against the backdrop of a film that tells the story of one of sports best rivalries, presenting in what is probably the best film of the year so far.Like Senna, RUSH tells a story that transcends the sport that works as the backdrop, a story of dedication, desire, competition, death defying acts and men willing to give everything for the glory of success. In doing so it opens itself to a wider audience that it could have hoped and, when awards season comes, should hopefully see itself recognised accordingly. 

Reviewed By: Phil Hobden

Phil’s 5 Best Films of 2013

Phil’s 5 Best Films of 2013

Quick Review Year In Review

So here it is… my pick of the BEST films of 2013.  

Film of The Year: Rush
In Brief:I loved Rush.  An excellent drama, a brilliant F1 film and best of all, a movie that keeps it sense of fun and humour.

2. Zero Dark Thirty
In Brief:  One of the first films I saw in 2013 ends up being one of the best.  Thrilling edge of seat drama, with tense direction from Katherine Bigelow and  top notch performances.  Brilliant.

3. McCullin
In Brief: A fascinating documentary on a fascinating man.  It’s not flashy or showy but it tells the story of a true original.

4. The Way Way Back
In Brief: A lovely coming of age film, charming sweet and funny with some great central performances.

5. Despicable Me 2
In Brief: Not just one of the funniest film of 2013 but also one of the most charming.  Okay so it’s mostly down to the excellent Minions but Despicable Me 2 had me quoting lines even to this day.

Bubbling under:
Thor 2, Hitchcock; Alan Partridge Alpha Papa; Mea Maxima Culpa; Iron Man 3; White House Down; Django Unchained; Batman The Dark Knight Returns Pt 2; The Impossible; Olympus Has Fallen; Fast 6; Kick Ass 2, Blackfish

Phil’s 5 Worst Films of 2013

Phil’s 5 Worst Films of 2013

Quick Review Year In Review

So here it is… my pick of the WORST films of 2013.  And man what a bunch there were to pick from this year, probably one of the worst years in film of recent memory. 

Worst Film of The Year: The Host
In Brief: Oh god.  So incompetent.  So boring. So devoid of any skill or a talent.  Yup The Host is by far the worst film of 2013 and THAT’s saying something.  Inept on every level. Yes if you hated Twilight then this is one to avoid.

2. The Worlds End
In Brief:  I loved Shaun of The Dead. I adored Hot Fuzz. Okay so I didn’t like Paul or Scott Pilgrim so maybe the bubble had already burst but for two hours I sat stoney faced, not laughing more than once. Horrid.

3. A Good Day To Die Hard
In Brief: This was neither good day or a Die Hard movie.  Watch RoboMcClane as he jumps from helicopters, baths in Nuclear water, gets shot at, jumps from buildings and rapes your memory of what a good Die Hard film looked like.

4. R.I.P.D
In Brief: You heard it was bad.  And it was.  Really bad.  Like Men In Black without the good bits.  Or Will Smith. Or even the piss poor sequels.

5. Stoker
In Brief: Yes okay so maybe I just didn’t get it but I was thoroughly bored and unmoved as Poker Face Kidman fails to emote for almost two hours whilst something happens and then… fuck it who cares.

Bubbling under: A Field In England; ABC’s Of Death; I Spit On Your Grave 2; This Is The End ; After Earth; Only God Forgives; Oz The Great & Powerful; Killing Them Softly; Broken City; Gangster Squad; Pain & Gain; Now You See Me; Elysium; Pacific Rim; The Family


Overrated Film of 2013… So Far:
 Gravity (6/10)
Yes that’s right, critic fav Gravity did little for me.  It was nice to look at but man was the story dull and the performances average.  By the end?  I just didn’t care.

 

Will Strong’s Round Up of 2013

Will Strong’s Round Up of 2013

A Blog Grosse Point Geek Quick Review

Every year Phil and Will debate the years top (and bottom) films.  Here’s Will Strong’s Best & Worst for 2013.

Best Films

  1. The Hobbit – The Desolation of Smaug (awesome)
  2. Django Unchained (just brilliant)
  3. Rush (outstanding – couldn’t fault it)
  4. Olympus Has Fallen (awesome action film – took me totally by surprise at just how good this was)
  5. The Escape Plan (so much fun, great action and just fantastic entertainment)
  6. Captain Phillips (Hanks and Greengrass back on form)
  7. Thor-The Dark World (Not enough Hiddlestone but a very very good sequel with some top action)
  8. Star Trek Into Darkness (not as good as the 1st one but Cumberbach was brilliant and it was very well made and directed)
  9. World War Z (I really liked it)
  10. Gravity (Most amazing SFX in years – superbly made)

Honorary Mentions

  1. The Last Stand (great fun)
  2. White House Down ( extremely good fun)
  3. Fast and Furious 6 (glorious lunacy)
  4. Cloud Atlas (far better than expected)
  5. Les Miserables (too long but very good nonetheless)
  6. Man of Steel (should have been better but  I enjoyed it)
  7. The Dyatlov Pass Incident (surprisingly good)
  8. The Hunger Games –Catching Fire (almost made my top ten best list – very very good – if a little bit repetitive of the original)
  9. Prisoners (brilliantly acted and kept me guessing till the end)
  10. Gangster Squad (good fun and well made)

Not bad but could have been better

  1. The Wolverine (sounds odd I know but there was too much Wolverine  -it wasn’t exciting enough, too little supporting characters and was a tad too long)
  2. Iron Man 3 (yes you read that right – I said it! – just didn’t connect to this one – despite the very funny script and the hilarious Mandarin reveal)
  3. Jack Reacher (ok but too slow)
  4. Oblivion (wasted opportunity but not bad)

Worst

  1. Pacific Rim
  2. Bullet to The Head
  3. The Councillor
  4. GI Joe Retaliation
  5. A Good Day to Die Hard
  6. Mama
  7. The Evil Dead
  8. The Raven
  9. Texas Chainsaw 3D
  10. Now you see me