Podcast: The Smoking Lamb #108 – Venom, The Predator

Podcast: The Smoking Lamb #108 – Venom, The Predator

The Podcasts The Smoking Lamb Podcast

It’s The Smoking Lamb Movie Podcast. A weekly, no-holds-baa-aa-arred, and R-rated look at the world of movies.

On this episode: Mike is away so the children will play!!! On this episode we have two huge reviews in Venom and The Predator. We also continue with our countdown of our favourite films of each year, this time from 2010-2006.

Check it out and BLEAT THE WORLD and don’t forget to follow up on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

#TheSmokingLamb #MoviePodcasts #Podcasts #FilmPodcast

 

 


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Venom (2018): Review by Motion Picture Maniac

Venom (2018): Review by Motion Picture Maniac

A Blog Motion Picture Maniac

OK, this is a weird one, sometimes, having mixed feelings on a film isn’t the surest thing in the world, the answer to the question “what did you think?” simply being “I have mixed feelings” doesn’t feel like it does a rather endearing little film like “Venom” the justice it deserves. Did Venom have bad? Yes, yes it did. Did Venom have good? Also yes, I would be lying through my teeth so hard they would come flying out like bullets if I said I thought it didn’t. Do I feel hesitant to call the overall piece a generally good film? Yeah, I’m afraid so, but why then give it a 6 as opposed to 5? The reason is, when I’m mixed in this particular and oddly specific way, I ask myself the question – would I actively want to see it again? And in the case of Venom; the answer is yes.

Tom “Shut The F*ck Up You C*nt” Hardy plays Eddie Brock, a famous reporter who, through a series of circumstances, finds himself host to a parasitic alien symbiote named Venom, sometimes a disembodied voice in Eddie’s head with some control over Eddie’s body, other times a big black monstrosity with big teeth who likes to bite off people’s heads. Eddie must get over the fact that Venom is here to stay and embarks on a raw meat munching mission, kitted out with quips n’ quotes, to win back his girl and beat the baddie.

The plot is very basic when you think about it afterwards, but is that a bad thing by definition? I’ve seen a lot of people make a comparison between this film and all the Marvel superhero films that predate Iron Man and I think that’s because Venom’s plot is late to the game. It’s as simple as A B C, 1 2 3 and at this point in movie history we’re all used to A 1 B 6 17 C (the same reason some MCU films are feeling familiar in the story department), but again, does that make it bad? Personally I have no idea, I’m disappointed that A B C, 1 2 3 lacks ambition but I also like the aesthetic of the movie ending up that way because it enjoyed watching Tom Hardy go nuts too much for its own good; something I’m not mad about because I too am guilty of doing.

I freaking love Tom Hardy, he’s one of my favourite actors and the primary reason I look forward to films he’s in, films I otherwise wouldn’t think too much about before seeing anyway due to cinematic obsession but I digress. I have read some reviews that call this his worst performance but I couldn’t disagree more, there’s not a moment in the entire movie in which he’s onscreen that I could take my eyes off him, as well as being a much more likeable iteration of the character than what’s found in the source material and the stupid Spiderman 3; he’s like the physical embodiment of a carnival (I’m talking about Eddie Brock and the voice of Venom with that one).

It’s a shame the tone is as inconsistent as it is because when the movie wants to be funny I think it really succeeds, Venom’s quips always had me laughing and big dumb fun action scenes accompany that sort of thing quite well. Unfortunately the jokes are often broken up by evil mad scientist stuff that belongs in a different movie – not badly made, just inconsistent and strange. The directing doesn’t help the tone much since I’m not sure Ruben Fleischer was interested in originality so much as just doing his own version of stuff he liked seeing in other movies, he didn’t bring his own sensibility to the table, Venom doesn’t have an original look or feel of its own, its cinematography is commercial and unremarkable and I think a sequel needs both a different director and an R rating, sorry Ruben but i think this task is better suited to an auteur.

There’s a word I would use to describe Venom, unremarkable, apart from Hardy a lot of it feels just that, even bordering on generic, shoot maybe the story being late to the game is a bad thing after all , the plot, characters and style feel derivative of other works and I, like many others it seems, was hoping for more, in fact I’ll be truthful – I really wanted Venom to be great to spite a critic I can’t stand and who embodies a lot of the arrogance and pretentiousness that has mutilated modern internet film criticism into the popularity contest it is today (no, it’s not Mark Kermode), I mean what is the deal today with judging a film’s quality before it’s even been shot because of, in this guy’s case, the character it’s based on supposedly being overrated and the fanbase is just ill-informed?

No, I’m not grasping at straws in a desperate attempt to say Venom is a good film out of sheer spite and personal resentment towards the current comic book movie critical culture that called it terrible before it was even made, I’m just a bit fed up with movies like Venom doing nothing to help disprove these idiots and falling into status quo’s that make their pompousness predictions look like some kind of prophesising like their smug looks suggest!

All that being said I did enjoy Venom, I enjoyed its action, its cast and performances, its jokes and while the CGI on things like crashing vans and super powered feet leaping from a brick wall wasn’t all that good the CGI on all things symbiote was top notch and impressively detailed, like I said at the beginning, I asked myself if all that is enough to want to see it again and the answer is yes. Venom is a messy, flawed, not sure what it wants to do with itself guilty pleasure that I had fun with during moments of genuine effort such as the action and the dynamic between Eddie and Venom.

Author: Jamie Robinson (Motion Picture Maniac)

 


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Phil’s Best To Worst: Marvel Cinematic Universe (inc. Ant-Man And The Wasp )

Phil’s Best To Worst: Marvel Cinematic Universe (inc. Ant-Man And The Wasp )

Best... Other Cr*p

Our ongoing look at the Best To Worst of the Marvel Cinematic Universe films!  Updated as and when a new Marvel (Studios) film is released…  Note scores reflect my original IMDB ratings.

[divider]

Best: Captain America Winter Solider

A cold war thriller with Robert Redford and a mini Avengers team up.  Add in the always awesome Frank Grillo and a genuinely interesting script and you have Marvel’s strongest cinematic outing.

——

2. Guardians Of The Galaxy

Massively far out of Marvel’s usual comfort zone, Guardian’s introduced spaceships, talking racoons and a giant tree person. Cracking script, expert action and a heap of fun.

——

3. Iron Man 3

The Iron Man film that broke a lot of Marvel fans, Shane Black took the playbook and ripped it up.  Twists, turns and a cute central relationships made this a different take on the norm and was all the better for it.

——

4. Thor: Ragnarok

Well this was a bundle of fun.  The previous Thor films have been okay but Ragnarok delivered a brilliant romp which dragged in The Hulk, a handful of memorable new characters (Korg!)  and some great set pieces to end up being one of Marvel’s best films yet.

 ——

5. Marvel’s The Avengers 

All the groundwork paid off as Marvel delivered it’s first ever super hero team up.  The Hulk was back (and done right this time), Hawkeye and Black Widow joined the team and director Joss Whedon delivered the goods.

——

6. Spider-Man Homecoming 

Funny, charming, with Marvels best villain and best Spiderman (yup sorry Andrew Garfield) Homecoming is a joy of a film that is by far the closest to what the comic book Peter Parker is.

——

6. Avengers: Infinity War

Shocking, well paced and with one of Marvel’s greatest screen villains Avengers Infinity War ALMOST delivered on it’s considerable promise.  Almost.

——

 

8. Iron Man

The Film that started it all… Iron Man was a rock n roll action movie with an unlikely lead, an even more unlikely director and enough balls out moments to wow.

——

9. Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2

Loud, silly and funny as heck, Vol. 2 isn’t quite the tight film that it’s 2014 original is but it’s a hell of a lot of fun.  Add in an amazing cast (including Stallone, Hasselhoff and Russell) and you have another winner from Marvel…

——

10. Ant-Man

Ant-Man is a heist movie. With Ants.  And fights on toy trains.  It’s crazy but it’s also full of charm, humour and fun.

——

11. Black Panther 

Black Panther takes a different approach to the usual Marvel film, yet falls into a lot of the same traps of relying a bit too much on visual effects at times.  That said it’s one of Marvel’s most intimate stories and whilst not perfect is a really strong entry into the increasingly bigger MCU.

——

12. Ant-Man & The Wasp

Ant-Man & The Wasp is GREAT fun.  It’s also totally forgettable and delivers what is possibly Marvel’s weakest villain to date.  Not bad by any stretch just off pace of the original.

——

13. Doctor Strange

Off the big screen Doctor Strange looses a little but this visually stunning film shows that marvel are still interested in pushing the envelope as far as you can in mainstream blockbusters.

——

14. Captain America: The First Avenger 

Solid, fun and well done, whilst it has little rewatch appeal Captain America again took a different approach and gave us a couple of Marvel’s most enduring characters.

——

15. Captain America: Civil War

It’s not bad.  It just didn’t gel with me as much as it did others. Don’t get me wrong there’s a lot to like and again it plays with the expected formula, but ultimately i’m just not that keen to go back to it.

——

16. Thor: The Dark World

I liked The Dark world MUCH more than others.  Okay so it’s flawed for sure but it’s crazy fun.

——

17. Thor

Thor was a sold film, tasked with the near impossible job of making a god fit in a world of men.  It does it well but not one you’ll rewatch much.

——

18. Avengers Age Of Ultron

Marvel’s first disappointment, Age Of Ultron was all show and little else.  Too big, too dumb and too long.

——

 

19. The Incredible Hulk (2008)

It has charm and the casting works well but ultimately The Incredible Hulk (whilst FAR better than the Ang Lee version) just doesn’t have enough to recommend it.

——

 

Worst : Iron Man 2

The idea was fine but sadly most of the film misses.  Even Mickey Rourke (yes one of the oddest Marvel villains ever) can’t save this.

——

 

Click here for related content

Phil’s Best To Worst: Marvel Films! (Updated – with Avengers Infinity War )

Phil’s Best To Worst: Marvel Films! (Updated – with Avengers Infinity War )

Best... Other Cr*p

In our latest regular feature, coming out the first Friday of each month, Phil (of Phil’s Quick Capsule Review) breaks down a film related subject in order of his own personal enjoyment from Best To Worst.  This time out: Marvel Cinematic Universe films!

Note scores reflect my original IMDB ratings.

[divider]

Best: Captain America Winter Solider

A cold war thriller with Robert Redford and a mini Avengers team up.  Add in the always awesome Frank Grillo and a genuinely interesting script and you have Marvel’s strongest cinematic outing.

——

2. Guardians Of The Galaxy

Massively far out of Marvel’s usual comfort zone, Guardian’s introduced spaceships, talking racoons and a giant tree person. Cracking script, expert action and a heap of fun.

——

3. Iron Man 3

The Iron Man film that broke a lot of Marvel fans, Shane Black took the playbook and ripped it up.  Twists, turns and a cute central relationships made this a different take on the norm and was all the better for it.

——

4. Thor: Ragnarok

Well this was a bundle of fun.  The previous Thor films have been okay but Ragnarok delivered a brilliant romp which dragged in The Hulk, a handful of memorable new characters (Korg!)  and some great set pieces to end up being one of Marvel’s best films yet.

 ——

5. Marvel’s The Avengers 

All the groundwork paid off as Marvel delivered it’s first ever super hero team up.  The Hulk was back (and done right this time), Hawkeye and Black Widow joined the team and director Joss Whedon delivered the goods.

——

6. Spider-Man Homecoming 

Funny, charming, with Marvels best villain and best Spiderman (yup sorry Andrew Garfield) Homecoming is a joy of a film that is by far the closest to what the comic book Peter Parker is.

——

6. Avengers: Infinity War

Shocking, well paced and with one of Marvel’s greatest screen villains Avengers Infinity War ALMOST delivered on it’s considerable promise.  Almost.

——

 

8. Iron Man

The Film that started it all… Iron Man was a rock n roll action movie with an unlikely lead, an even more unlikely director and enough balls out moments to wow.

——

9. Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2

Loud, silly and funny as heck, Vol. 2 isn’t quite the tight film that it’s 2014 original is but it’s a hell of a lot of fun.  Add in an amazing cast (including Stallone, Hasselhoff and Russell) and you have another winner from Marvel…

——

10. Ant-Man

Ant-Man is a heist movie. With Ants.  And fights on toy trains.  It’s crazy but it’s also full of charm, humour and fun.

——

11. Black Panther 

Black Panther takes a different approach to the usual Marvel film, yet falls into a lot of the same traps of relying a bit too much on visual effects at times.  That said it’s one of Marvel’s most intimate stories and whilst not perfect is a really strong entry into the increasingly bigger MCU.

——

12. Doctor Strange

Off the big screen Doctor Strange looses a little but this visually stunning film shows that marvel are still interested in pushing the envelope as far as you can in mainstream blockbusters.

——

13. Captain America: The First Avenger 

Solid, fun and well done, whilst it has little rewatch appeal Captain America again took a different approach and gave us a couple of Marvel’s most enduring characters.

——

14. Captain America: Civil War

It’s not bad.  It just didn’t gel with me as much as it did others. Don’t get me wrong there’s a lot to like and again it plays with the expected formula, but ultimately i’m just not that keen to go back to it.

——

15. Thor: The Dark World

I liked The Dark world MUCH more than others.  Okay so it’s flawed for sure but it’s crazy fun.

——

16. Thor

Thor was a sold film, tasked with the near impossible job of making a god fit in a world of men.  It does it well but not one you’ll rewatch much.

——

17. Avengers Age Of Ultron

Marvel’s first disappointment, Age Of Ultron was all show and little else.  Too big, too dumb and too long.

——

 

18. The Incredible Hulk (2008)

It has charm and the casting works well but ultimately The Incredible Hulk (whilst FAR better than the Ang Lee version) just doesn’t have enough to recommend it.

——

 

Worst : Iron Man 2

The idea was fine but sadly most of the film misses.  Even Mickey Rourke (yes one of the oddest Marvel villains ever) can’t save this.

——

Avengers Week: Spider-Man Homecoming – A Quick Capsule Review

Avengers Week: Spider-Man Homecoming – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

With Avengers: Infinity War opening this week, Phil’s Quick Capsule Review will be rerunning the reviews of some of our favourite Marvel Films! 

 

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Marvel’s Spider-man works.  Be it the excellent Tom Holland, one of the MCU’s best bad guys in Michael Keaton’s Vulture or even the appearances by Robert Downey Jnr & Jon Favreau as Iron Man & Happy, Marvel have finally nailed the web slinger.  Gone are the memories of the lack lustre “Amazing Spider-man” films or emo dancing of Spider-man 3, in is real heart and soul, a witty script and an actor who actually looks like he should be at school.  It even gets around the tricky last act with a few killer story developments. Time will tell how good this will be on second viewing but for now Marvel have done a top job.  Oh and REALLY stick around of the end credits… this one’s worth it

 

Best Bit: End titles

 

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Buy

 

If You Liked this Try: Spider-man 2, The Amazing Spider-man, Captain America Civil War 

 

Rating: 

 

Author: Phil Hobden

Phil’s Best To Worst: Marvel Films! (Updated)

Phil’s Best To Worst: Marvel Films! (Updated)

Best... Other Cr*p

In our latest regular feature, coming out the first Friday of each month, Phil (of Phil’s Quick Capsule Review) breaks down a film related subject in order of his own personal enjoyment from Best To Worst.  This time out: Marvel Cinematic Universe films!

Note scores reflect my original IMDB ratings.

[divider]

Best: Captain America Winter Solider

A cold war thriller with Robert Redford and a mini Avengers team up.  Add in the always awesome Frank Grillo and a genuinely interesting script and you have Marvel’s strongest cinematic outing.

——

2. Guardians Of The Galaxy

Massively far out of Marvel’s usual comfort zone, Guardian’s introduced spaceships, talking racoons and a giant tree person. Cracking script, expert action and a heap of fun.

——

3. Iron Man 3

The Iron Man film that broke a lot of Marvel fans, Shane Black took the playbook and ripped it up.  Twists, turns and a cute central relationships made this a different take on the norm and was all the better for it.

——

4. Marvel’s The Avengers 

All the groundwork paid off as Marvel delivered it’s first ever super hero team up.  The Hulk was back (and done right this time), Hawkeye and Black Widow joined the team and director Joss Whedon delivered the goods.

——

5. Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2

Loud, silly and funny as heck, Vol. 2 isn’t quite the tight film that it’s 2014 original is but it’s a hell of a lot of fun.  Add in an amazing cast (including Stallone, Hasselhoff and Russell) and you have another winner from Marvel…

——

5. Spider-Man Homecoming 

Funny, charming, with Marvels best villain and best Spiderman (yup sorry Andrew Garfield) Homecoming is a joy of a film that is by far the closest to what the comic book Peter Parker is.

——

6. Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2

Loud, silly and funny as heck, Vol. 2 isn’t quite the tight film that it’s 2014 original is but it’s a hell of a lot of fun.  Add in an amazing cast (including Stallone, Hasselhoff and Russell) and you have another winner from Marvel…

——

7. Iron Man

The Film that started it all… Iron Man was a rock n roll action movie with an unlikely lead, an even more unlikely director and enough balls out moments to wow.

——

8. Ant-Man

Ant-Man is a heist movie. With Ants.  And fights on toy trains.  It’s crazy but it’s also full of charm, humour and fun.

——

9. Doctor Strange

Off the big screen Doctor Strange looses a little but this visually stunning film shows that marvel are still interested in pushing the envelope as far as you can in mainstream blockbusters.

——

10. Captain America: The First Avenger 

Solid, fun and well done, whilst it has little rewatch appeal Captain America again took a different approach and gave us a couple of Marvel’s most enduring characters.

——

11. Captain America: Civil War

It’s not bad.  It just didn’t gel with me as much as it did others. Don’t get me wrong there’s a lot to like and again it plays with the expected formula, but ultimately i’m just not that keen to go back to it.

——

12. Thor: The Dark World

I liked The Dark world MUCH more than others.  Okay so it’s flawed for sure but it’s crazy fun.

——

13. Thor

Thor was a sold film, tasked with the near impossible job of making a god fit in a world of men.  It does it well but not one you’ll rewatch much.

——

14.Avengers Age Of Ultron

Marvel’s first disappointment, Age Of Ultron was all show and little else.  Too big, too dumb and too long.

——

 

15. The Incredible Hulk (2008)

It has charm and the casting works well but ultimately The Incredible Hulk (whilst FAR better than the Ang Lee version) just doesn’t have enough to recommend it.

——

 

Worst : Iron Man 2

The idea was fine but sadly most of the film misses.  Even Mickey Rourke (yes one of the oddest Marvel villains ever) can’t save this.

——

Phil’s Best To Worst: Spider-Man Movies

Phil’s Best To Worst: Spider-Man Movies

Best... Other Cr*p Top 5

In our latest regular feature, coming out the first Friday of each month, Phil (of Phil’s Quick Capsule Review) breaks down a film related subject in order of his own personal enjoyment from Best To Worst.  This time out: Spider-Man films! 

[divider]

Best: Spider-Man 2

Easily the best Spiderman film, introducing Doctor Octopus and with both Rami and McGuire a bit more free in their roles.  Which means Rami gets to add an element of Evil Dead to the visuals and no film has ever been worse for that.

——

2. Spider-Man HomeComing 

MCU Spiderman almost (almost!) takes the crown here on his first full length story – Keaton is superb as the Vulture but it’s Holland’s film and he runs with it.  A great MCU film and even better a great Spiderman film.

——

 

2. Spider-Man

Still years on the relationship between Parker, MJ & Spiderman remains strong, with a origin story we weren’t yet bored of so expertly handled.  A great film.

——

3. Captain America: Civil War

Okay so STRICTLY not a Spiderman film as he only appears in it but Tom Holland’s Spiderman debut steals the show as was SO memorable it became almost the sole topic of conversation when leaving the film.

——

4. The Amazing Spider-Man

Rebooted with Andrew Garfield, it’s actually not a terrible film. It’s just a bit pointless. It also suffers from a really weak villain in The Lizard and far too much CGI.  That said it DOES feature one of the best Stan Lee cameos ever!

——

5. Spider-Man 3

Emo Spiderman. A bored MJ. A host of sub plots that don’t work. A villain you don’t care about. And Sam Rami forced to include a character he hated in Venom.  It’s just a mess and not a fun one at that.

——

Worst : The Amazing Spiderman 2

It’s not that The Amazing Spiderman 2 is bad, it’s just boring.  So boring that as I wrote this I cant remember much about it, Too much CGI, Garfield looks far too old to be playing the role as it’s written and a central relationship you just don’t care about.

——

Spider-Man Homecoming – A Quick Capsule Review

Spider-Man Homecoming – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Marvel’s Spider-man works.  Be it the excellent Tom Holland, one of the MCU’s best bad guys in Michael Keaton’s Vulture or even the appearances by Robert Downey Jnr & Jon Favreau as Iron Man & Happy, Marvel have finally nailed the web slinger.  Gone are the memories of the lack lustre “Amazing Spider-man” films or emo dancing of Spider-man 3, in is real heart and soul, a witty script and an actor who actually looks like he should be at school.  It even gets around the tricky last act with a few killer story developments. Time will tell how good this will be on second viewing but for now Marvel have done a top job.  Oh and REALLY stick around of the end credits… this one’s worth it

Best Bit: End titles

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Buy

If You Liked this Try: Spider-man 2, The Amazing Spider-man, Captain America Civil War 

IMDB Rating: 

 

Author: Phil Hobden