Podcast: Ross And Phil Hijack – The Smoking Lamb #83

Podcast: Ross And Phil Hijack – The Smoking Lamb #83

The Podcasts

On this episode of the podcast we hand over our partners and friends at The Smoking Lamb for a revisit of their Christmas 2017 special episode featuring Phil from Ross And Phil Talk Movies.  Basically I’m filling here whilst Ross And Phil is on hiatus (back August!) but it’s a great episode!

Find out more about The Smoking Lamb here or subscribe to the podcast via Soundcloud or Apple Podcasts

#RossAndPhil #RossAndPhilTalkMovies #MoviePodcasts

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

   

 

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Phil’s Best To Worst: Star Wars Movies! (Updated with Solo)

Phil’s Best To Worst: Star Wars Movies! (Updated with Solo)

Best... Other Cr*p

Listed from top to Attack Of The Clones, Phil, of Phil’s Quick Capsule Review, breaks down a film related subject in order of his own personal enjoyment.  This time out: Star Wars Films!

 

The Rules: So I’ve excluded the throwaway 80’s Ewok kids films here as well as the Christmas special as it’s far from cannon.  So just the main 11 Star Wars films and the feature length Clone Wars movie.

——

 

BEST: Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back

Empire Strikes Back is a franchise high point for many reasons but MOSTLY as it’s the Star Wars film Lucas had least to do with, instead putting the film into the hands of Kasdan.  It shows – more mature, darker and edgier it still boasts one of cinemas best twist endings and adds depth to the cut out characters from Star Wars.  Essential.


 

——

2. Star Wars: A New Hope

Groundbreaking, epic and genre defining space sagas don’t get much better than this. A lean plot, some edge of your seat action sequences and THAT ending make Star Wars a simply outstanding film.

——

3. Star Wars: The Return Of The Jedi

I love Return of The Jedi.  Growing up it’s the Star Wars film I watched the most (it certainly has the best action of any Star Wars films).  Years on the excitement still holds but there are shadows of the failings of the prequels here also (Ewok’s for some but mostly the convoluted plotting, the fact everyone knows or is related to the Skywalkers and the weak dialogue).  Still the final space battle and the lightsabre duel stand out as the franchises two best moments

——

4. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Yup that hit the spot.  Rogue One, a war story, a story of hope and overcoming overwhelming odds.  And thats just the making of it.  Yet it works.  It works SO well in fact that it’s jumped to No4 on this list.

——

5. Star Wars: The Last Jedi 

Delivering a new style of Star Wars film, The Last Jedi makes some bold choices (and some silly ones) to take Star Wars in a fresh new direction that will finally allow it to move past it’s Skywalker focus story and firmly land the legacy on the shoulders of some new characters. It doesn’t all work but when it does it’s some of them most spectacular Star Wars yet!

——

6. Star Wars: The Force Awakens  

After the much maligned prequels, the first Star Wars film to be Lucas free felt very much like a homage as it retooled A New Hope’s story and gave us a “Best of” compilation.  That said it was well done, set up an array of exciting new characters and gave us well hell of a twist when you know what happens to you know who.  Not as good as we wanted it to be but a massive step up from the prequels.

 

——

7. Solo : A Star Wars Story 

Solo is good.  It’s just a victim of teh production issues that plagued it from the start.  The cast are mostly superb (Clarke isn’t sadly) but the film runs out of steam as it tries to hit every Solo touch point referenced in previous Star Wars films.  Good but could have been better

——

8. Star Wars: The Revenge Of The Sith

The best of a very bad bunch, Sith at least had a darkness to it that the franchise had avoided previously.  It’s still shouldered with terrible acting, a plot that steps on the original trilogy more than it ever needed to and some terrible FX work BUT it’s not Attack of The Clones.

——

9. Star Wars: The Clone Wars (2005)

From little acorns big Oak Trees grow and that’s very much the case here.  See the Star Wars: the Clone Wars animated film has nuggets of promise that would later be fulfilled by the excellent TV show but the feature length pilot instead gets itself weighed down in trying to please too many people and ends up being a bit of a mess.

——

10. Star Wars: The Phantom Menace 

Deeply flawed, badly plotted and criminally dull at times this film is saved by some excellent visuals (although dated FX), the pod race and the final duel between Jedi & Sith.  It overplays it’s hand throughout however and the Jedi prove to be rather dull as leading characters.  Less said about Jake Lloyd the better.

——

WORST: Star Wars: Attack of The Clones 

A real low for the series and one of the worst sequels ever made, Attack of The Clones gets almost nothing right.  If A terrible story that makes no sense, a boring end battle where CGI things shoot CGI things and the blowing of one of Star Wars most talked about moments (The Clone Wars!!!) weren’t enough you also have one of the most wooden central performances ever (helped by some of the worst dialogue ever).  It’s a bad film. And one to be avoided.

——

 

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Podcast: Ross And Phil Talk… Solo: A Star Wars Story (Spoilers)

Podcast: Ross And Phil Talk… Solo: A Star Wars Story (Spoilers)

Ross and Phil Talk Movies The Podcasts

On this episode of the podcast we take a look at the latest Star Wars film, Solo: A Star Wars Story .  What did we make of this latest spin off, of the new Han Solo and Lando’s interesting sexual conquests. All will be revealed.  Warning: Spoilers for ALL Star Wars films and TV shows.

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

Films Discussed: Star Wars: Rebels, Solo: A Star Wars Story, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Game Of Thrones, Killing Eve

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

   

Star Wars Week: Star Wars The Empire Strikes Back (1980) – A Hall Of Fame Quick Capsule Review

Star Wars Week: Star Wars The Empire Strikes Back (1980) – A Hall Of Fame Quick Capsule Review

Hall of Fame Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
The Empire Strikes back is quite possibly the best sequel ever made.  Not only does it expand what (at least felt like) a relatively contained story but also adds colour and depth to the characters whilst increasing the peril, action and tension. And that ending.  Before Infinity War and The Last Jedi, Empire Strikes Back was the original sequel to deliver the gut punch ending. It’s also worthwhile to note that until Disney arrived, Empire was also the Star Wars film with the least Lucas involved and it shows – rounded characters, lively script and a tight story (even if the timeline is a bit… dubious).  As flawless as a sequel could be.

Best Bit: Hoth

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Buy

If You Liked this Try:Star Wars Force Awakens, Star Wars A New Hope, Star Wars The Last Jedi

 

 

HOF

 

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Solo: A Star Wars Story – A Quick Capsule Review

Solo: A Star Wars Story – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
I liked Solo.  It has issues for sure but overall it’s a thumbs up.  But it’s production issues (fired directors, massive reshoots, more reshoots) do shine through the film, especially the first and last act.  The pacing and tone suffer the most with the original directors comic stylings not sitting at ease with Howard’s more pedestrian direction.  BUT these issues can almost be forgotten when you have performances as spirited and fun as Glover and Ehrenreich who do excellently with such iconic roles, leaving you wanting much more.  Harrelson makes a good addition to the Star Wars universe but sadly Emilia Clarke once again fails to shine away from Game Of Thrones.  So far from a disaster, Solo is a worthy if lesser entry to the Star Wars cannon.

Best Bit: Meet Lando

Cinema, Stream, Avoid: Cinema

If You Liked this Try: Rogue One, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Star Wars Rebels

For related content click here

Star Wars Week:  Star Wars A New Hope – A Quick Capsule Review

Star Wars Week: Star Wars A New Hope – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

With Solo: A Star Wars Story out this week it felt a good time to revisit our previous reviews for the Star Wars films… next up A New Hope. 

 

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Star Wars is a genre defining, once in a life time kinda film that not only changed a genre of films for good it showed that the true value in film laid beyond the movie itself openning up multiple untouched revenue streams that kept the franchise alive well beyond it’s original runs.  It’s a film that wears its influences on it’s sleeve, from pulp serials of the 30’s and 40’s like Flash Gordon to the World War two dog fights that influence it space combat action so heavily.  The script is hokey for sure but the effects have rarely been topped by CGI and the pace and editing are top notch.  Star Wars defined a generation and still continues to entertain and endure over 40 years later.

Best Bit: The death star assault

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Buy

If You Liked this Try: Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, Star wars: Return Of The Jedi, Star Wars: Rogue One

IMDB Rating: 

 

Author: Phil Hobden

 

Phil’s Best To Worst: Star Wars Movies! (Updated)

Phil’s Best To Worst: Star Wars Movies! (Updated)

Best... Other Cr*p

Listed from top to Attack Of The Clones, Phil, of Phil’s Quick Capsule Review, breaks down a film related subject in order of his own personal enjoyment.  This time out: Star Wars Films!

The Rules: So I’ve excluded the throwaway 80’s Ewok kids films here as well as the Christmas special as it’s far from cannon.  So just the main 10 Star Wars films and the feature length Clone Wars movie.

——

 

BEST: Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back

Empire Strikes Back is a franchise high point for many reasons but MOSTLY as it’s the Star Wars film Lucas had least to do with, instead putting the film into the hands of Kasdan.  It shows – more mature, darker and edgier it still boasts one of cinemas best twist endings and adds depth to the cut out characters from Star Wars.  Essential.


 

——

2. Star Wars: A New Hope

Groundbreaking, epic and genre defining space sagas don’t get much better than this. A lean plot, some edge of your seat action sequences and THAT ending make Star Wars a simply outstanding film.

——

3. Star Wars: The Return Of The Jedi

I love Return of The Jedi.  Growing up it’s the Star Wars film I watched the most (it certainly has the best action of any Star Wars films).  Years on the excitement still holds but there are shadows of the failings of the prequels here also (Ewok’s for some but mostly the convoluted plotting, the fact everyone knows or is related to the Skywalkers and the weak dialogue).  Still the final space battle and the lightsabre duel stand out as the franchises two best moments

——

4. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Yup that hit the spot.  Rogue One, a war story, a story of hope and overcoming overwhelming odds.  And thats just the making of it.  Yet it works.  It works SO well in fact that it’s jumped to No4 on this list.

——

5. Star Wars: The Last Jedi 

Delivering a new style of Star Wars film, The Last Jedi makes some bold choices (and some silly ones) to take Star Wars in a fresh new direction that will finally allow it to move past it’s Skywalker focus story and firmly land the legacy on the shoulders of some new characters. It doesn’t all work but when it does it’s some of them most spectacular Star Wars yet!

——

6. Star Wars: The Force Awakens  

After the much maligned prequels, the first Star Wars film to be Lucas free felt very much like a homage as it retooled A New Hope’s story and gave us a “Best of” compilation.  That said it was well done, set up an array of exciting new characters and gave us well hell of a twist when you know what happens to you know who.  Not as good as we wanted it to be but a massive step up from the prequels.

——

7. Star Wars: The Revenge Of The Sith

The best of a very bad bunch, Sith at least had a darkness to it that the franchise had avoided previously.  It’s still shouldered with terrible acting, a plot that steps on the original trilogy more than it ever needed to and some terrible FX work BUT it’s not Attack of The Clones.

——

8. Star Wars: The Clone Wars (2005)

From little acorns big Oak Trees grow and that’s very much the case here.  See the Star Wars: the Clone Wars animated film has nuggets of promise that would later be fulfilled by the excellent TV show but the feature length pilot instead gets itself weighed down in trying to please too many people and ends up being a bit of a mess.

——

9. Star Wars: The Phantom Menace 

Deeply flawed, badly plotted and criminally dull at times this film is saved by some excellent visuals (although dated FX), the pod race and the final duel between Jedi & Sith.  It overplays it’s hand throughout however and the Jedi prove to be rather dull as leading characters.  Less said about Jake Lloyd the better.

——

WORST: Star Wars: Attack of The Clones 

A real low for the series and one of the worst sequels ever made, Attack of The Clones gets almost nothing right.  If A terrible story that makes no sense, a boring end battle where CGI things shoot CGI things and the blowing of one of Star Wars most talked about moments (The Clone Wars!!!) weren’t enough you also have one of the most wooden central performances ever (helped by some of the worst dialogue ever).  It’s a bad film. And one to be avoided.

——

Star Wars The Last Jedi – A Quick Capsule Review

Star Wars The Last Jedi – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
So the Last Jedi is good.  On balance it could well be the best true Star Wars film since Jedi and It’s fair to say when it delivers it knocks it out the park – The opening, Rey/Ren, The finale.  Even better watching it back on home video, the misses that bothered me first time around (The long middle section, Star Wars Casinos, the punking out of not one but two characters set up for great things but cast aside) actually made a lot more sense.  It’s still far to say that a better script could have made this up there with Empire, but even though The Last Jedi flirts with greatness it still doesn’t QUITE land it.  This all said it was a really entertaining film, with lots of surprises along the way and twists and turns you don’t quite expect that lived up to expectations and hype.  Hamill is great, Fisher gives one of her best performances and the support cast are mostly exceptional.  Where to next is anyones guess but the final film in this trilogy will have a hell of a job beating this. Recommended.

Best Bit: Finally! Lightsaber action!

Cinema, Stream, Avoid: Cinema

If You Liked this Try: Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back , Rogue One : A Star Wars Story

Rating: 

 

The Best & Worst Of 2017 – Motion Picture Maniac

The Best & Worst Of 2017 – Motion Picture Maniac

A Blog Motion Picture Maniac Year In Review

Remember when the disappointment that was 2016 ended and we all toasted to 2017 hopefully proving to be better? Didn’t exactly meet expectations did it? Last year many of our favourite celebrities passed away, this year many of those left have turned out to be sex offenders – go team. But anyway, just like last year I’ve had to stretch my film lists out from top 10’s to top 20’s, which could be seen as a good thing, an indication that there were enough good films to warrant a longer list but then, you remember, the same goes for the bad list.

What can I say; this year was long and depressing, the year before it was long and depressing and, realistically, the next year will probably be long and depressing also; happy days! So here we go, the best films of the year and… the other list, along with some other fun considerations because why not? Of course there were some well-regarded films I was unable to see like Call Me By Your Name and Brigsby Bear and I do hate that I missed them but hey, what can I do?

 

Best Films Of 2017

  1. Dunkirk – (Film of the year, a perfectly shot single feature length action sequence rife with lethal intensity, brutal sound design and gargantuan production value; all of which transpire to do justice to real life heroes)
  2. Blade Runner 2049
  3. Wind River
  4. A Ghost Story
  5. Wonder Woman
  6. Loving Vincent
  7. Thor: Ragnarok
  8. Song To Song
  9. War For The Planet Of The Apes
  10. Mother
  11. American Made
  12. It Comes At Night
  13. Lego Batman
  14. John Wick Chapter 2
  15. Logan
  16. Battle Of The Sexes
  17. Star Wars: The Last Jedi
  18. It
  19. The Disaster Artist
  20. Atomic Blonde

 

Honourable Mentions

The Beguiled

The Killing of a sacred deer

Detroit

Double date

Only the brave

T2 Trainspotting

Okja

Get Out

Baby driver

Spiderman homecoming

 

Special Sympathy Mention:

Justice League

 

Worst Films Of 2017

  1. The Shack – (Worst film of the year, one of the most morally bankrupt, self satisfied, arrogant and offensive pieces of propaganda garbage I have ever seen in my life, it’s not just bad, it’s hurtful and dangerous)
  2. The Bye-Bye Man
  3. Diary Of A Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul
  4. Unforgettable
  5. Everything, Everything
  6. Girl’s Trip
  7. The Snowman
  8. Flatliners
  9. The Zookeeper’s Wife
  10. The Sense Of An Ending
  11. Hampstead
  12. Unlocked
  13. The Emoji Movie
  14. The House
  15. Daddy’s Home 2
  16. CHiPS
  17. Bitter Harvest
  18. Overdrive
  19. Transformers: The Last Knight
  20. Fifty Shades Darker

 

Dis-Honourable Mentions

Geostorm

The Star

A Bad Mom’s Christmas

The Space Between Us

Wish Upon

Fist Fight

Table 19

The Book Of Henry

Snatched

Rings

 

 

15 Favourite Action Sequences

Pretty much everything in “The Air” – Dunkirk

Silo Hostage Rescue And Subsequent Battle – Justice League

No Man’s Land – Wonder Woman

Bifrost Bridge Battle – Thor: Ragnarok

Stairwell Fight – Atomic Blonde

Helicopter Swatting – Kong: Skull Island

Hocus Pocus – Baby Driver

The Battle Of Crate – Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Drill Sight Massacre – Wind River

Art Gallery Shootout – John Wick Chapter 2

Aero Baby Rescue – Fate Of The Furious

Throne Room Slaughter – Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Steppenwolf In Themyscira – Justice League

K VS Luv – Blade Runner 2049

Opening Sequence – John Wick Chapter 2

 

 

Favourite Villainous Performances

Adam Driver as Kylo Ren – Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Ciaran Hinds as Steppenwolf – Justice League

Jamie Foxx as Bats – Baby Driver

Jeff Goldblum as The Grandmaster – Thor: Ragnarok

Bill Skarsgard as Pennywise The Dancing Clown – It

Sylvia Hoeks as Luv – Blade Runner 2049

Will Poulter as Krauss – Detroit

Woody Harrelson as The Colonel – War For The Planet Of The Apes

Ruby Rose as Ares – John Wick Chapter 2

Robert Carlyle as Francis Begbie – T2 Trainspotting

 

 

Best On-Screen Couples (Romantic, Bromantic Or Otherwise)

David and Walter – Alien: Covenant

Thor and… his Hammer – Thor: Ragnarok

K and Joi – Blade Runner 2049

Hobbs and Deckard – Fate Of The Furious

Billie-Jean and Marilyn – Battle Of The Sexes

Greg and Tommy – The Disaster Artist

Rocket and Baby Groot – Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2

Wolverine and X23 – Logan

Batman and Superman – Justice League

Bryce and Kincaid – The Hitman’s Bodyguard

 

 

Special Awards

Best Opening Credit Sequence: Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2

Best Use Of Music In Correlation To The Visuals: Blade Runner 2049 – “Sea Wall”

Pottymouth Of The Year: Robert Carlyle – T2 Trainspotting

Most Interesting Style: TIE – Loving Vincent/A Ghost Story

Best SFX: War For The Planet Of The Apes

Most Immersive Camera Movements: Justice League

Funniest Line (Intentional): “I’m gonna knock your teeth so far down your throat you’re gonna stick a toothbrush right up your ass to brush em” – Fate Of The Furious

Funniest Line (Unintentional): “Blow into the hole gently, I’ll do the fingering” – Alien: Covenant

Captain Obvious Award: Josh Duhamel, Transformers: The Last Knight – “Look, it’s a big alien ship”

Guilty Pleasure Of The Year: TIE – xXx: Return Of Xander Cage/Resident Evil: The Final Chapter

Notable Face-Palm Of The Year: Fakest Sneeze Of All Time – The Bye-Bye Man

Done and dusted, recalling and sifting through the stuff I liked about the year was great fun, doing the same for what I didn’t like bloody hurt. Oh I wonder what the next year will hold, not just regarding the movies but the politics, the sociology, the very backbone of public opinion… who am I kidding, it’s gonna suck, it’ll all suck and we should probably all just save time by taking turns gleefully leaping into a giant deadly shit hole to boil and desolve to death.

 

Happy New Year.

Motion Picture Maniac 

Phil’s 5 Best Films of 2017

Phil’s 5 Best Films of 2017

2017: In Review Quick Review Year In Review

And that’s it.  Another year in the rear view mirror and another reason to take a look back at the BEST, WORST and, well, others of 2017.

So here it is: my pick of the BEST films of 2017.

 

Film of The Year:  Baby Driver

In Brief: Yup the Spacey factor makes this awkward for sure BUT the fact that it still remains as many favourite film of the year DESPITE of that should tell you just how good Baby Driver is.  Edgar Wright delivers a fanatic, charming, 90’s style film that mixes True Romance, Bullet and many other great films to make what will probably be a modern classic. Oh and THAT soundtrack.  Superb.

 

 


2. T2 Trainspotting
In Brief: : Silly title yes. Silly film? No.  Few films are ever made about what it’s like to be middle aged, by T2 Trainspotting nails it. It’s not perfect but it hit where it counted.


3. Paddington 2

In Brief:  Who saw this coming?  Well anyone who actually watched Paddington 2 obviously.  Charming, fun and silly Paddington has more heart than it can share.  It’s just brilliant.


4. Raw
In Brief: This French horror film is a tough watch and will turn some people off for sure.  But I found it captivating, brutal and, er, raw.


5. Star Wars The Last Jedi
In Brief:
  It’s a really good Star Wars film and an excellent blockbuster, up there with the year best. Full of massive highs and a few lows, The Last Jedi mostly lives up to expectation.

6. OJ: Made In America – Fascinating documentary

7. Blade Runner 2049 – One of the best SCi-Fi films in many years

8. La La Land – Charming, funny and heart breaking all at once.

9. IT (2017) – One of the best horror films for many a year.

10. Thor: Ragnarok – Marvel go three for three and Thor whilst not the obvious choice was the one, on reflection, I enjoyed most.

 

Bubbling Under:  Shot Caller, Dunkirk , Spider-Man Homecoming ,Logan ,Prevenge,  Logan Lucky ,  Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2 ,Counterpunch,  Jawbone ,  Silence,  Hidden Figures