Motion Picture Maniac’s Review of 2018

Motion Picture Maniac’s Review of 2018

A Blog

Another ghastly year on this spherical clump of crap we call a planet closes up shop while we all desperately try not to think about how quickly it said it’s bye-byes and left without finishing its coffee, further making us dread how fast the rest of our lives could very well cut to credits as inspired by Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Anyway enough sunshine and lolly pops, here’s my roundup of 2018, as if it’s a year for film we actually want to look back on but what can I do?

I mean this was a dull one wasn’t it? How many of the year’s most anticipated like Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom left everyone with little more than a shrug, in fact I’ll go even further, you wanna know how bad this year was? I didn’t have any room for Fifty Shades Freed even on my dishonourable mentions! The infamous leather-clad climax of boring McMimzie girl’s dumbass relationship with abusive-o billionaire managed to escape via human shields with the films I felt were somehow WORSE.

Let’s start with the favourites:

 


Top Ten Best

Aquaman
Silly and stupid can often mean good just as much as bad, and there are different spectrums for every type of filmic goodness, point being: if deliberately stupid and bonkers popcorn entertainment could a masterpiece in its own right – Aquaman would be it; well done DCEU, I liked you before you were cool.

Assassination Nation
Not a pleasant movie to watch at times, but on top of simply being aligned with my own personal taste for trippy weirdness, any film that’s truthful and direct about how stupid masses of human beings can be and how irredeemably amoral we are as a species is ok by me.

Susperia
You want to know something, I actually rather liked this more than the original, sure there’s some stuff that didn’t need to be there story-wise but the filmmaking on display here just tickled me pink, every shot you see exists one helluva freaky personality, the style rocked and there’s plenty of scenes I think I’m going to remember for a long time; and that last act… oh my heavens!

Deadpool 2
This movie is so… damn… funny! It’s pretty well made too, so from my perspective it only did its job well and then some, a successful exercise in classy tastelessness that brought forth the filth without forgetting to have a heart for cuteness sake.

Mandy
What did I say about films aligned with my own personal taste for trippy weirdness? What it has appeared to be a good year for seems to be the crazy ones, the bonkers beasts, the hallucinogenic journeys into the unknown and Mandy ticked all those boxes, Nic Cage back to what he’s good at; please tell me this is only the beginning.

First man
Im not surprised that, in today’s political climate, a film that doesn’t explicitly show a flag being planted into the moon gets labelled “unpatriotic” by attention seeking shoulda-been-abortions, but who cares about them, this was one of the most powerful and engaging and extremely well made/best looking movies of the year, seriously, this is the best Neil Armstrong movie that could be made.

A Quiet Place
Wasn’t a bad year for horror either now that I think about it, nice to have it back, boasting a premise so good it almost should’ve been disappointing (this is not a perfect world after all) A Quiet Place beat multiple odds and executed, not just its brilliant gimmick, but just plain good filmmaking, almost like Krazinski himself suffered the epidemic of bad horror films these past few years and took it upon himself to make things right, I wonder what he’ll do next.

Isle of dogs
Before seeing the next two this was my pick for film of the year for a while, talk about the style being the same as the substance, just like Deadpool this film earns its place by simply doing its job really well, a job other films prove doing so is rather tricky, it’s both well made and really-really funny, yes Mr Anderson, I do indeed love dogs, also the animation, the jokes and a million other things.

Blackkklansman
I’ll just say it, Spike Lee sounds like a bit of a dick, but this joint just rules, not only is it nostalgically stylish and thought provoking beyond preparation but it couldn’t have come out at a better time, when there’s a childish racist KKK defending fat loser (don’t deny it) in the Whitehouse the cockroaches feel safe coming out from under their rocks to go public with their backwards-as-hell views and it’s up to films like this to shock the rest of us with brains into maybe doing something about it.

The miseducation Of Cameron Post
And what an absolute gem this is, winning the top prize as my pick for film of 2018 not just for being the best film, I think, both functionally and aesthetically but because of its success in executing a theme very important to me personally, modern religion rarely proves itself anything more than a blatantly irrational imaginary right to oppress the current minority group of the day! It was used to argue for slavery once upon a time, against interracial marriage after that and now they’re calling for the gays to either convert or die; it’s up to tear jerking and wonderfully heart warming movies like this to slap those backwards fools in the face so we can maybe start working harder towards greater worldly empathy among humankind – not that fundamentalists know anything about empathy, kindness or morality but oh well.

Honourable mentions that didn’t make the cut:

Creed 2
Mission Impossible: Fallout
Widows
Avengers: Infinity War
A Star Is Born
The Old Man And The Gun
Christopher Robin
Sicario 2: Soldado
Tully
Black Panther

Notable Netflix Release:

Annihilation (I didn’t love Roma as much as everyone else it seems)

Best films that came out in 2018 but IMDB counts as 2017 releases for some reason:

The Shape Of Water
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri
Lady Bird
You Were Never Really Here
I, Tonya
Revenge
Phantom Thread
Brawl In Cell Block 99
First They Killed My Father

Best Trailers For 2018 Releases:

Aquaman Final Trailer
Sicario 2 First Teaser & Third Trailer
Creed 2 Second Trailer
Mission Impossible: Fallout Official Trailer
Deadpool 2 Final Trailer
Widows Trailer
A Quiet Place Teaser
Black Panther Official Trailer
Isle Of Dogs Official Trailer

 

Most Anticipated Film Of 2019

 

Godzilla: King Of The Monsters

 

Favourite Quotes:

 

Aquaman: “Dad”? That’s your kid? – shame on you.

Isle Of Dogs: To the north, a long rickety causeway over a noxious sludge marsh leading to a radioactive landfill polluted by toxic chemical garbage, that’s our destination, get ready to jump.

Creed 2: Is good picture.

Avengers: You should have gone for the head.

Deadpool 2: Scout master Kevin?

Ready Player One: it’s fucking Chucky!

Blockers: these aren’t made for comfort, they’re made for speed.

Susperia: They’ll hollow me out and eat my cunt on a plate.

Christopher Robin: People say nothing is impossible but I do nothing every day.

Rampage: Of course the wolf flies.

Notable Scenes:

Sicario 2: Different way to fire a gun.

Game Night: Amateur Bullet Removal.

Aquaman: Arthur vs Orm 2nd round.

Creed 2: Drago embraces his son.

Bohemian Rhapsody: Live Aid.

Infinity War: “I don’t want to go”.

A star Is Born: first duet.

Fallout: Tom breaks his foot.

First Man: Spinning out of control.

Deadpool 2: opening credits.

Black Klansman: Charlottesville footage.

A Quiet Place: Cut to Black.

Solo: Darth Maul.

Susperia: Dance the twist.

Annihilation: Bear.

Brawl In Cell Block 99: Face stomp.

Revenge: Glass removal.

Phantom Thread: “Where is Cyril”?

Now for the other end of the spectrum, the least fun half of an end of year review, the worst films of 2018, the cinematic experiences that make me question just what the hell I’m doing with my short time alive, but never mind, here they are; brace for impact!

 

Top Ten Worst

Proud Mary
Talk about televisual, generic and boring!

Teen titans go to the movies
Heard it wasn’t that bad, it wasn’t, it was so much worse, the image of a twerking naked baby Superman will haunt me for years.

Winchester
There’s a shot of the haunted mansion made entirely of CGI that starts as an unmoving frozen frame for a split second, now that’s lazy.

Dog days
Romantic ensemble comedy with dogs, could be funny, could also be agonisingly dull and unoriginal.

Breaking in
How far the director of V For Vendetta has fallen, when characters in a life or death situation start saying “freaking” but their lip movement say a different four letter word – you know you don’t care.

Walk like a panther
Similar filmmaking standards to Pudsey The Dog… I am in hell.

The nutcracker and the four realms
The poor guy playing the title role will never work again if this is the best he can do, one of the few movies I’ve fallen asleep watching.

A wrinkle in time
I expected better of Ava Duvernay, also a movie less awkward, embarrassing and horribly acted but we all want things we can’t have, what an absolute cringe this thing is.

The Necromancer
The pieces of camcorder crap I made at college were better than this, I understand the plight of the no budget filmmaker, but no money is no excuse for no effort, or the inclusion of every dialogue cliche that ever existed – EVER!

Show dogs
It was either gonna be The Necromancer or this, but Show Dogs won out because at least Necromancer isn’t a kids film containing a running gag about learning not to bite a guy whose job it is to fondle your genitals, that’s right kids, if someone wants to touch your bits then you should let them without complaint, would be bad enough just being one of the worst made films in existence but no, they had to go the extra mile into the inferno.

 

Dishonourable mentions

 

Death wish
The strangers prey at night
The guernsey literary and potato peel pie…
Hell fest
The predator
Status update
The possession of Hannah grace
Truth or dare
Night school
Johnny English strikes again

 

Biggest disappointment I was actually looking forward to:

 

15:17 To Paris

And I suppose that’s it, so – Merry Christmas and all things in between, happy new year and see you in hell.

 


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Show Dogs (2018) – Motion Picture Maniac

Show Dogs (2018) – Motion Picture Maniac

A Blog Motion Picture Maniac

The degree of filmmaking present in Show Dogs has left me scratching my head to the point of self-scalping trying to work out how such a war crime of a film could be given final cut, let alone even released, especially since we live in a world where studios aren’t above dumping a half completed film and starting again with a different director all because the tone was too comedic; and I guarantee that the Phil Lord and Christopher Miller version of Solo: A Star Wars Story would have been Return Of The King compared to the evil filmic genocide Show Dogs.

The temptation to simply write “it’s bad” was pretty damn strong since I don’t like repeating myself and an in depth review of this monstrosity would sound too similar to my last 1/10 review. Hollywood is the one that doesn’t seem to mind repeating itself because most worst films ever nowadays all seem to make the same careless and borderline malicious mistakes, after some pondering I thought you know what, I don’t want to be like that same idiot who ended up becoming the topic of video essays for unfairly reviewing BVS with a single word: “Really?”

Show Dogs is about Rottweiler police dog that goes undercover into a dog pageant show to thwart some criminal plan to sell a baby panda and steal the winning who, by winning, has made themselves worth something on the black market… apparently. No more beating around the bush – this film is EVIL, it makes amateur college short films look worthy of preservation by the National Film Registry, it has not one single good point to be found among its ocean of bad mistakes and I don’t know if it should be exorcised, experimented on or simply encased in cement and thrown into a sinkhole.

Our hero dog, Max, is voiced by Ludacris who’s dialogue and delivery never really seems to switch to a different tone appropriate to the situation, as though, when he was recording his dialogue, he had no idea what was supposed to be happening as his character was speaking so he just gave the line as tough sounding and “cool” (when really he just sounds like and arrogant douchebag who never shuts up). Off he goes, pumping out one-liner after one-liner, some intended to be cool, others meant to be funny – ALL extremely annoying.

The visual effects are unacceptable, animal characters are either entirely CGI or have horrifying CGI mouths that are just cringe inducing to look at, that’s when these real life dogs don’t very suddenly become fully CGI so they can do all the action movie jumping, dodging and rope swinging; I wouldn’t complain if it didn’t make want to shoot myself from embarrassment. The editing has no flow, no sense of timing or efficiency, the cinematography is flat and artless, the music is kids movie generic, the jokes made me want to rip the screen from the wall and WHAT THE HEL IS WILL ARNETT DOING IN THIS THING?

Ok, it’s not like Michael Caine appearing in Jaws 4 but still, this movies bares such a strong resemblance to the kind of hideous schlock that shows up straight to DVD in second hand pawn shops that I am aghast at how he ever could say yes to such a project. I was wishing myself to sleep from the opening shot onwards but we haven’t even gotten to the worst part yet folks, oh no, I’ve described to you how the film is ugly and cheap looking, lacking in any artistic integrity/value and pretty much in the same vein as Nine Lives or Pudsey The Dog The Movie; but it still manages to get even worse than that.

You may have already heard of this controversy, you may not, I know I hadn’t, but there is a sequence in the film in which Max undergoes a bikini wax thus making him weary of any other humans going back there. Later on, Will Arnett has to prepare Max for an examination by the judges, which involves them getting a good feel of his evenly shaved ball sack, he has trouble restraining himself, snapping at Arnett every time, so when the dreaded examination actually occurs, Max must do his best not to bite the judge lest he lose the competition.

To stop himself from biting, Max imagines several other characters telling him to go to his happy place and think of himself dancing with Arnett beneath the stars. So let’s summarize, Max must allow himself to be fondled against his wishes and go to his happy place so he doesn’t react negatively, all in a comical context, call me pretentious but when this happened I thought it all seemed a bit child-molesty and it turns out I’m not the only one. Seems this scene has stirred up quite the fuss and I completely see why, I’m sure the intention was just to be funny but that just makes it all the more disturbing; how could they not have realised early on in the scripting process?

Show Dogs is really rather horrible, badly made across the board and just when you think it cant get any worse it goes and stoops into unintentionally offensive territory, watch the trailer, it’ll explain everything, take pride knowing I saw it instead of you and move on with your life; something I’m going to have trouble doing since I sat through the whole thing.