IT: Chapter 2 (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

IT: Chapter 2 (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Two years after the highly regarded IT blew away cinematic records, IT: Chapter 2 arrives in cinema.  So was IT worth the wait? Well yes.. mostly.  Okay so IT isn’t as effective, scary or well paced at the 2017 film but you almost forgive all it’s issues due to the spot on cast who help bring the older characters to life so brilliantly.  Okay so there’s too many flashbacks, the CGI just doesn’t work, the story isn’t as engaging and the ending still has all the issues of the source material but IT: Chapter 2 still delivers plenty of jumps, scares and thrills.  Not essential but still a worthy watch.

Best Bit: Dinner

Cinema, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: IT (2017), IT: The Mini-Series, Stand By Me

 


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Jurassic World (2015) – A Revisited Quick Capsule Review

Jurassic World (2015) – A Revisited Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
So the best film ever made? No.  Not even the best film made about CGI dinosaurs. In a summer of hyper, critical love and box office smashes, Jurassic World does what it needs to and returns all the same thrills in similar types of movies that you’ve seen in the last 20+ years since Spielberg delivered his Jurassic Park. But that’s kinda the problem.  Jurassic World does little new, little interesting or little standout.  The CGI is okay, the script at times poor and the actors exist only to move you to the next CGI set piece.  It feels at times like a computer game being played that you get to watch.  Hell whatever I say however, you’ll see it anyway but this could have been so much better.

Best Bit: T Rex vs Uber Dinosaur

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: Jurassic Park, Jurassic Park 2, Jurassic Park 3

 

 


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Escape Plan 3: The Extractors – A Quick Capsule Review

Escape Plan 3: The Extractors – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Escape Plan didn’t need a sequel.  It certainly didn’t need TWO sequels.  That said I kinda didn’t hate Escape Plan 2 (most people did) and, for me at least, The Extractors (filmed back to back with Hades) was perfect train ride movie.   Literally – I watched it on a train journey!  It’s all bullshit machismo from start to end that you’ve seen a million times before and the story is so lean it could be vegan but Stallone delivers as always and the fights/action are just about up to scratch enough to enjoy.  Look most will hate it… for me it passed the time on a very boring day.  Make of that what you will….

Best Bit: Final assault

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: Escape Plan, Escape Plan 2: Hades, The Expendables

 


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Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Far From Home shows that Marvel is in safe hands post Endgame.  A confident, funny and charming sequel, in many ways it’s a better film than Homecoming (and in some less so) and once again delivers one of Marvel’s better villains in Mysterio – charmingly played by the excellent Jake Gyllenhaal.  But for all the crash bang wallop of the film (and there is a lot), it’s the central relationships that make this film work so well.  Be it Ned & Betty or Spiderman & MJ… you can’t help but fall in love with these characters once again. Zendaya especially shines as the honest, twitchy MJ and gives us one of the most honest love stories the MCU has ever told.  Yup it suffers from TOO much CGI and the stakes, whilst making perfect sense, are set so high that it needed risk which just isn’t there.  It’s the small moments that shine in Far From Home. So despite its few faults and unobtainable stakes, the film and the cast delivers.  Three for three this year with the MCU.

Best Bit: THAT post credit scene

Cinema, Stream, Avoid: Cinema

If You Liked this Try: Spider-Man: Homecoming, Captain America: Civil War, Spider-Man 2

 


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Toy Story 4 (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Toy Story 4 (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Toy Story 4 was always going to be a major risk after the near perfect Toy Story trilogy.  So I’m happy to report that for the most part Toy Story 4 is a success – a charming, funny and sometimes surprising continuation (and probably end) to over 24 years of flawless storytelling.   As you’d expect the animation is superb, the script on point and the voice acting first class.  What’s less expected is that the film hits a level of emotion and pathos you’re not expecting and by the time the final credits roll around you heart strings have been firmly tugged on… especially for those who’ve been there since the start.   It has flaws but you almost don’t care. A great family film and one that adults will love as much as kids.

Best Bit: The Ending.

Cinema, Stream, Avoid: Cinema

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

 


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Toy Story 3 (2010) – A Revisited Quick Capsule Review

Toy Story 3 (2010) – A Revisited Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
The Toys Are Back In Town to round up what is probably the greatest movie trilogy of all time (Yes Star Wars and Godfather take note). Mixing the usual Pixar magic with a heartwarming, emotional (yes I cried at the heart string pulling finally 10 minutes), funny and action packed story, the top notch voice cast (Michael Keaton as Ken! genius!) and a Randy Newman song or two it begs the question… can these guys make a bad film? As it stands I’d say no. Another 5 star Pixar Classic.

Best Bit: The Ending.

Cinema, Stream, Avoid: Buy

If You Liked this Try: Toy Story, Toy Story 2,Up

 


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Iron Sky 2: The Coming Race (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Iron Sky 2: The Coming Race (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review Uncategorized

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Iron Sky 2 is the slightly belated sequel to 2012’s bat shit mental Nazi lunar invasion film Iron Sky. The Finnish-German science fiction comedy mash up took a similar crowd funding route as its predecessor and, much like that film, manages to squeeze an incredible amount out of a very limited budget (it raised £500k USD).  Space ships, Aliens, Hidden Worlds, Hitler riding a T-Rex (I shit you not)… it has it all. Well other than a cohesive story of course.  But who cares… if you strap in and go along with the ride when Iron sky 2 get’s going it really delivers a wild, crazy, OTT ride unlike anything out there,

Best Bit: Sieg Heil Motherfuckers

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: Iron Sky, Kung Fury, Sky Captain & The World Of Tomorrow

 


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Ralph Breaks The Internet (2018) – A Quick Capsule Review

Ralph Breaks The Internet (2018) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Ralph Breaks The Internet is a sequel that very much feels like more of the same – it’s well made, it looks pretty and has a few clever ideas but ultimately much like the original Wreck It Ralph it’s just not funny, charming or clever enough to hold my attention for it’s near two hour run time.  Okay yup The Star Wars stuff is fun, the Disney Princesses stuff clever but the rest is pretty Meh!  Both films just feel like lost opportunities and even my 8 year old daughter wasn’t that enamoured. One to skip.

Best Bit: Disney Princesses

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Avoid

If You Liked this Try: Wreck It Ralph, Zootopia, Big Hero 6

 


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The Predator (2018)- A Quick Capsule Review

The Predator (2018)- A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
The Predator is rubbish.  But its Saturday afternoon sitting on the sofa not doing much rubbish that is actually quite good fun while it lasts.  Okay yes so there’s obvious studio interference and the film lacks a lot of Shane Black’s usual spark (it’s also not set at Christmas usually for Black).  There’s also some issues around the side that have contributed (at least in part) to the film flopping in the cinema but and, it’s a big but,  there’s enough here to enjoy that enables you to mostly forget this.  Black’s script is witty, the cast are good and the affects  more than passable.  Predator 2 still remains the best sequel in this franchise and there’s still a much better film to be made in this world but I enjoyed The Predator for what it’s worth.

Best Bit: Predator Dogs

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: Predator, Predator 2, Predators 

 


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Blog – Friday The 13th’s… Reviewed

Blog – Friday The 13th’s… Reviewed

Quick Review

To celebrate today being Friday The 13th In what may be either a heroic or heroically dumb move, off the back of the rather excellent Crystal Lake Memories documentary, I have decided back in 2014 to rewatch EVERY Friday The 13th movie.  From the original 1980’s classic to the franchise killing remake, I re-watched ever kill, every slash and every Jason death. So here it is – a complete look at the Jason Vorhees back catalogue…

Phil Hobden

Crystal Lake Memories: The Complete History Of Friday The 13th (2013)

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
So the documentary that started it all: Crystal Lake Memories is an exhaustive (and exhausting clocking it at a nearly 400 min run time) look at the history of the Friday The 13th films – from it’s humble beginnings right through Freddy Vs Jason and the studio remake and is a must see for fans of the films. Brough to you by the same team that delivered the equally essential Nightmare Of Elm Street documentary Never Sleep Again no stone is left unturned.  Best of all far from a fluff piece this digs into what worked, what didn’t work and what happened behind the scenes.  Simply put this is both essential and fascinating. 

IMDB Rating: 

Any cast of note?   Almost everyone who has ever been in or involved with the films! 

 

[divider]

 

Friday The 13th (2009)

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
So in hindsight the remake of Friday 13th is actually pretty good.  Gone are the japery and silliness of the later Friday films, back comes the hardcore gore and nudity that was a hallmark of the series at it’s best.  Plenty of gruesome kills, a story which nicely remakes three Friday’s for the price of one and a cast that can actually act, it’s directed with a sense of respect to the better instalments whilst delivering a few nice new moments.  I liked it and, stood alongside the rest in the series, it comes across as very good indeed.  Recommended.

IMDB Rating: 

Best Kill: Sleeping bag then on fire.  Ouch. 

Any cast of note?   Danielle Panabaker, Nana Visitor

 

[divider]

Freddy Vs Jason (2003)

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Okay that’s better.  Whilst most of the Friday films have aged badly, Freddy Vs Jason is still a prime cut in a butchers shop of (mostly)offal.   Bride Of Chucky director Ronny Yu once again delivers on a quirky premise and gives fans something they have been waiting for since it was first muted back in The Final Friday.  A knowing film with a strong idea its heart, the films full of crowd pleasing smackdowns, gross out blood and guts and nudity: everything you want from a Freddy or a Jason movie.  Best of all it leaves you wanting more which, sadly, hasn’t yet arrived.  So overall even though this isn’t strictly just a Friday The 13th movie it’s certainly one of the strongest in the series and for sure the one that delivers best all-round.

IMDB Rating: 

Best Kill:  Freddy’s hand kills… er… Freddy.

Any cast of note?   Robert England, Kelly Rowland, Monica Keena

 

[divider]

Jason X (2001)

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Yup Jason X is terrible.  But it’s terrible in a knowing, fun and silly kind of way that the franchise has been seriously lacking up to this point.  Just the idea of taking Jason and putting him on a space ship is insane BUT even with terrible 90’s CGI, a near total lack of nudity and gore and acting that is at best dubious the film is just such damn fun. From VR deaths, 80’s Friday The 13th homages to a Cyborg Jason this film just knows what it is and delivers on that, never trying to be anymore or less.  And I kinda salute it for that… oh and did I mention CYBORG JASON??????

IMDB Rating: 

Best Kill:  Face, Liquid Nitrogen, Desk.

Any cast of note?   Kane Hodder. LexaDoig. David Cronenberg. Peter Mensah

 

[divider]

Jason Goes To Hell: The Final Friday (1993)

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Oh dear.  Look I totally understand that the Friday 13th movies were never grounded in reality.  But seriously Part 9 really does stretch credibility to levels even I couldn’t get on board with.  Supernatural nonsense, Jason’s heart being the key to his powers, transferring from one body to another… it just jumped the shark.  And for a franchise that had last ended with the pretty dire Jason takes Manhattan that’s saying something.  What’s worse is that the gore has been dialled down to almost PG13 levels means the film doesn’t even have that possible redeeming feature.

IMDB Rating: 

Best Kill:  Freddy comes for Jason (okay technically not a kill but buy far the best bit of the film)

Any cast of note?   Kane Hodder returns as Jason an in a cameo as himself.  Steven Williams.  Erin Gray.

 

 

[divider]

Friday the 13th Part 8: Jason Takes Manhatten (1989)

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
This was one was a bit of a slog.  Which is a shame as I quite enjoyed Jason Takes Manhattan when I was a kid.  Reanimated via electrical cable(yes really!), this film borders on PG-13 at times with virtually zero nudity or gore (and when there are FX they are pretty poor).   Add to that a host of bad performances, an idea so totally dumb that you end up laughing at it more than being scared and you are left with one of the weaker Jason films.  That said it earns an extra star for having the infamous man boxing Jason sequence…

IMDB Rating: 

Best Kill:  Head knocked clean off.

Any cast of note?   Kane Hodder returns as Jason. Also TV stalwart Peter Mark Richman. 

 

 

[divider]

Friday the 13th Part 7: New Blood (1988)

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Sadly Jason returns once more (via telekinesis no less) and despite marking the first time behind the mask for the legendary Kane Hodder, Part 7 is a bit of a slog.  It doesn’t help that it take almost 20 minutes for the first kill to take place, and when they do most are pretty uninspired by this point.  Gone are the higher budget effects of Jason Lives as the franchise marks it’s decline into even cheaper produced tat.  It has a few moments – the sleeping bag kill is ace, but the ending is bad even for these movies.  All in all it’s one to miss.

IMDB Rating: 

Best Kill:  Sleeping bag around tree!

Any cast of note?   Kane Hodder makes his debut as Jason

[divider]

 

Friday the 13th Part 6: Jason Lives (1986)

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Jason Lives picks up on the momentum of A New Beginning and runs with it – more kills, more violence but oddly less nudity.   The MPAA strike again.  It also starts the journey of the franchise being (relatively) grounded that ends with Jason being in Space.  Tommy Jarvis returns (with Thom Mathews taking over the role) and this time manages to bring back the unstoppable killer with a bolt of lightning.  Accidental of course, and from there its back to the usual routine of creative deaths.  Jason Lives feels a little more high budget than some of the other entries and a bit more polished. All in all another fun entry.

IMDB Rating: 

Best Kill:  Head into a toilet wall.

Any cast of note?   Jennifer Cooke, Thom Mathews

 

 

[divider]

Friday the 13th Part 5: A New Beginning (1985)

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Well this was a surprise.  The legendarily bad Part 5 (the one where Jason isn’t actually Jason) is actually one of the stronger entries into the series so far.  So yes the plot is total hokum, but this is the last Jason film before things start to go really mental (physic powers, resurrection, Space) and you know what it’s brutal, bloody and well paced with out the “God is anything going to happen” tedium of Parts 3 and 4.  It also has a nice pay off at the end, a hint of where things could have gone, but sadly didn’t.  So far from being rubbish, part 5 is actually a pleasant surprise. Who’d have thought…

IMDB Rating: 

Best Kill:  Belt around face, tightened.

Any cast of note?   Corey Feldman. Shaver Ross 

 

[divider]

Friday the 13th Part 4: The Final Chapter (1984)

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Oh dear.  Growing up this was always MY Friday The 13th film.  The one that grabbed me, the one I thought I remembered.  It had Tommy Jarvis, a young Feldman and a kick arse nail in the coffin for Jason.  And years on those things remain.  It’s just a shame that the rest of the film is so tepidly done. Yes much like the previous Friday The 13th sequels, it’s an hour and 10 mins of nothing happening (well some 15 rated nudity but little else) with a handful of kills interspersed.  Sadly it ended up being quite a slog.  So far from the 7/10 classic I remember, this has been the most disappointing Friday yet (at least in terms of expectation!).  Oh and the legendarily bad Part 5 is looming.

IMDB Rating: 

Best Kill: Jason’s death at the hands of Tommy.  Brutal.

Any cast of note?   Corey Feldman, naturally. Crispin Glover (Marty McFly’s dad)

 

[divider]

Friday the 13th Part 3 (1982)

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Part 3?  In 3D?  Don’t mind if I do.  Problem is, when it’s all over, what you have is yet another retreat of the original movie, with little of new of note, zero nudity and some really toned down kills.  I know the MPAA was pretty tough back in the early 80’s but even so it takes the film almost 50 minutes to get into gear and when it does the screaming cast and modernly good FX do little to hop dour attention.  Okay so it’s fun looking at everything set up so that the 3D could be used to max effect and, back in it’s day, this was pretty innovative.  But now?  It’s just kinda funny. The weakest Friday yet…

IMDB Rating: 

Best Kill: Eye pop into screen.  Ah… 80’s 3d!

Any cast of note?   Betsey Palmer briefly returns again with reused Part 2 footage. Dana Kimmell did a few bits after. 

 

[divider]

 

Friday the 13th Part 2 (1981)

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
So Part 2 delivers slightly less gore (thank the MPAA for that), a slower pace (mostly the murders don’t start until after 45 minutes in) and a sack-headed Jason.  But whilst it’s not as strong as the original, there’s still a  lot to enjoy here.  Jason get’s his machete for the first time, there’s a nice call back to the infamous part 1 jump scare ending and the film certainly starts to set the tone for what would follow in it’s relentless Jason as unstoppable killer trope. I also really liked the ending where Ginny pretends to be Mrs Voorhees, confusing Jason long enough for her to try and escape.  Miner is a workman like director so the film overall is proficient rather than spectacular but still enjoyable none the less.

IMDB Rating: 

Best Kill: Machette + Head + Wheelchair

Any cast of note?  Amy Steel is something of a cult favourite.  Betsey Palmer briefly returns. 

 

 

[divider]

Friday the 13th (1980)

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
The original, and one of the lesser regarded films in the franchise (it didn’t, after all, even feature the iconic Jason as the killer), I was surprised at just how well the film held up some 34 years later.  A nice quality HD transfer, some creative kills and some excellent early Tom Savini FX work, Friday The 13th plays more as a who done it that the slasher series it would later become.  Yup the acting is variable and the fashion dated, but overall it’s a much stronger film that I remember.

IMDB Rating: 

Best Kill: Kevin Bacon of course! Arrow through the throat.  Excellent!

Any cast of note? Kevin Bacon

 

 

Author: Phil Hobden

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