The Defiant Ones (2017) – A Quick Capsule Review

The Defiant Ones (2017) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
I’ve been a huge fan of Dr Dre and his music for a long time.  Whether as an artist (The Chronic) or as a producer (see Eminem and MANY others) I’ve held him and his talent in high regard.  His partnership with Jimmy Iovine is at the heart of this HBO documentary which looks at their rise across the 80’s/90’s and eventually to the largest purchase of a company that Apple has ever made.  It’s fascinating stuff – from the those they have produced to the trials and tribulations, Rap wars and signings, falling outs and controversy that have happened along the way.  It’s essential viewing for anyone with even a passing interest into the history of modern music.

Best Bit: The whose who at Iovine’s wedding

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: Something From Nothing: The Art of Rap, Straight Outta Compton, Beats Rhymes and Life: The Travels of A Tribe Called Quest


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Podcast: The Smoking Lamb #069 – Detroit, Logan Lucky

Podcast: The Smoking Lamb #069 – Detroit, Logan Lucky

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: Welcome to episode Sixty Niiiine, Duuuuuude! While Josh indulges in all his Disney fantasies, its left to Mike, Steve and Ricky B to take the helm this week. This week, we look at DETROIT and LOGAN LUCKY, our Top 5 Movie Cameos, there is a special Educating Mike section and Ricky and Steve debate in Address The Lamb!

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

#TheSmokingLamb #MoviePodcasts #Podcasts #FilmPodcast


Phil’s End Of Year Awards 2016

Phil’s End Of Year Awards 2016

Quick Review Year In Review

So 2016 is almost over and it’s that time a year again where everyone reflects back on their best and worst films of the year.  So we’ve covered our best and our worst films of 2016, so before we look at the films coming up in 2016 here’s my ‘Alternative’ End of Year Awards for 2016…


The Most Entertainingly Bad Film Of The Year Award…
Gods Of Egypt


The best film to watch on a train as it makes it 100 times less shit Award…
Gods Of Egypt 

Surprise of The Year Award…
Low Budget films rule the roost!

Performance Of The Year Award…
Mark Kermode… for his oddly favourable reviews for his friends movies (see Jason Bourne)

Just Fuck Off and Die Award…

Michael Bay & the Transformers 5 trailer.

Least Deserving Commercial Bomb of The Year Award…
The Nice Guys


Come In Your time is Up Award…
Johnny Depp’s career (see Alice Through The Looking Glass & Yoga Hosers)


Trailer Of The Year Award…
Suicide Squad
Let Down of The Year Award…
Suicide Squad


It’s NOT the fact it has women in it, it’s just the fact it’s actually an average film Award…


The “Really? It takes some effort to fuck up this much” Award…
DC/Warner Brothers. How hard IS it to fuck up films with THESE characters?


Cameo of The Year Award…
Jesus (Ben Hur)


The Oscars only like REALLY famous dead people award for missing out other stars who died Award…
The Oscars for leaving out George Gaynes, Vanity, Gunnar Hanson & Rowdy Roddy Piper


The Proof That Award Shows Suck Award…
Sly Stallone, Creed, The Martian, Star Wars: The Force Awakens all missing out on awards


The Poof That Award Shows DONT Suck Award…
Ex Machina being awarded for Best Visual Effects

All reboots and remakes suck award and here’s the proof Award…
Point Break, Ghostbusters, Ben Hur


Okay so not ALL remakes & reboots suck Award…
Westworld. The Jungle Book.
Yup we just made it for the money award (aka The Sequels Suck Award…
Independence Day Resurgence, Jason Bourne, Now You See Me 2, Alice Through The Looking Glass


Films That SHOULD have been on my 2015 List’s but I Hadn’t Seen…
The Lady In The Van,  Straight Outta Compton, The Survivalist


Next time: Phil’s Look at 2016 and a look back at my 2017 predictions… 

Blog: Straight Outta Compton – A Quick Capsule Review

Blog: Straight Outta Compton – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Biopics are hard to pull off, especially when the subject (s) are both well known and still living.  But give a good director a good story and an oscar nominated script (criminally the only nominations or this film) and you end up with Straight Outta Compton – a quality look at the rise of N.W.A and rap music in America in the late 80’s and early 90’s.  Dre, Cube, E and Snoop are all represented here and whilst the film has taken some flack for leaving some of the rougher edges out, it’s still pretty hard hitting at times. Racism, AIDS, betrayal, drugs and money – it’s all on display alongside some of the best music of the decade.  A must see.

Best Bit: F–k The Police

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Buy

If You Liked this Try: 8 Mile; Boyz In The Hood

IMDB Rating: 


Author: Phil Hobden

Blog: Motion Picture Maniac – Top 10 Best Films Of The Year 2015

A Blog Motion Picture Maniac

Quick word of warning, these are all movies that I personally loved, looking at other top tens throughout the years I’ve noticed that quite a few people can get particularly passionate about the subject of the best films of a year, so I just want to say if you don’t like my picks then go ahead and make your own list, that’s what makes them so fun, the fact they can all be different.

Now, films like The Revenant, Creed and The Hateful Eight won’t be coming out over here in the apparently “not as cool as America” UK until January, worth a mention seeing as they’ve appeared on other top ten lists and I don’t want people thinking I didn’t like them now do I? I just haven’t seen them, and to keep the list neat and tidy, I have a rule that dictates that it doesn’t matter if a film was released during 2015, if IMDB counts it as a 2014 release, I can’t include it, which is also why you won’t be seeing Whiplash, Kingsman or John Wick on this list.

Now let’s get started:

  1. Straight Outta Compton

A movie I did not expect to like, a film that had more than a few reasons to be terrible, a film that completely blew me away. Energetic doesn’t even begin to cover it people, rap has always been a polarizing music genre but the film about NWA seems to have something for everyone, along with the perfect acting, snazzy dialogue, lack of ego and sense of scope, the film never forgot to bring the boom and burst it from the screen, it’s a music biopic that’s great; that’s saying something.


  1. Sicario

A modern western with more intensity than an apple on Halloween, with soul piercing performances by Emily Blunt, Benicio Del Toro and Josh Brolin, perfect cinematography and direction and a harrowing tone that refuses to leave you alone, Sicario is a beautifully gritty film, vile in all the right ways, teaming with the filth of corruption all building to ending that made me want to bathe in bleach, this is a powerful and hard hitting film that left me broken and hopeless, a job well done I think.


  1. Carol

I can’t say I love this movie enough, a romance made with professionalism and maturity that does away with the tropes of lovey-dovey rubbish and actually succeeds in producing knots in throats, Carol is the kind of film that stays with you, a poignant love story with true emotional payoff, the kind that can reinvigorate romance as a genre and restore it to long lost glory. I cried during this film, I mean I really cried, the acting, the direction, the story, the characters… Good God the greatness.


  1. Avengers: Age Of Ultron

OK, I think here is where I have some explaining to do… oh wait, no I don’t; it’s my list, haha. The entire way through, I waited for something to rub me the wrong way, but that never happened. I’m a big comic book freak so I suppose it makes sense that I loved this movie, I loved the characters, the chemistry they have together, the fun the actors seem to be having and the action is insane, from the climactic group shots among waves of destruction to the fight between Hulk and Iron Man. I know explosion based action has fallen out of fashion thanks to Transformers, but just because Avengers has plenty of things going boom doesn’t mean it’s exactly like the sexist/racist masterpieces of crap that are the transformers films. Yes there are a lot of characters but this is Avengers, that’s kind of the point.


  1. Legend

I seriously don’t get the hate against this film, Tom Hardy delivers a fantastically realized duel performance as the Kray twins, people who look alike but couldn’t be more different, it’s not just about gangsters, it’s about a man torn between his family by blood and his family by marriage. The film is fun, energetic, bursting with witty dialogue, captures and tells its story perfectly and in my opinion is completely flawless. I’ve heard people are down about the tone but I simply cannot agree, it starts out fun and vibrant but begins to casually descend into darker territory as it draws to a close, very well handled I thought. I’ve heard some negative comparisons to Goodfellas, like the film just wants to be Scorsese, but if you ask me, a film about the Kray twins in the style of a Scorsese movie sounds more than awesome.


  1. Inside Out

Pixar has always been a safe bet in my opinion and Inside Out isn’t just an example, it should be a staple of just how good they can be, this is a film that stands beside the Toy Story films and Finding Nemo in terms of greatness, I suppose it’s a given that a film about emotions should also be teaming with them. It tackles a subject that very few films have dared to, particularly animated family films, it’s about depression, growing up, the way in which we can look back at our lives or how we move along with them, it brought tears to my eyes during quite a few scenes and should be shown in psychology classes; I could actually make children smarter – happy days.


  1. Ex Machina

Looking at this film one would think Alex Garland had been directing for years, but no, this is his directorial debut, and a more than impressive one at that. Ex Machina is a haunting and deeply disturbing experience that never puts a foot wrong, every scene, every shot, every moment reeks of bright futures for all involved and you would think a film of such seriousness and frightening atmosphere would be ruined by a quick blast of disco dancing, but that’s actually one the reasons Ex Machina is so unique, and of course – great.


  1. Black Mass

Johnny Depp is a great actor who has long been kept at bay from achieving his full potential and in Black Mass he doesn’t just excel, he rockets through the roof and into space. Johnny is absolutely terrifying in this film, his portrayal of real life gangster Jimmy “Whitey” Bulger is so scary, so nerve racking and unrelenting I forgot I was watching a gangster biopic and thought I was watching a full on horror film. This is a brutal and nasty film that fills it’s stage with a cast of villains and the results are spooky to say the least. Its scope is huge, its handling of its story is spot on, the false or wrong moves, everything just feels right, it’s perfectly shot, perfectly written, perfectly paced and yet, just like Legend, it received negative comparisons to Goodfellas, is that some kind of fad, comparing everything to Goodfellas? Is that what all the kids are doing now?


  1. The Martian

This is why we make and watch movies, Ridley Scott’s grand sci-fi adventure epic is 100% a perfect film, I don’t care what anybody says, I think it’s as flawless as a film can be, literally everything about it is beyond great, from the acting to the cast, the effects to the sets, the story to the humor, the cinematography to the editing, everything, and I do mean everything, was out of this world. At the end I wanted to cry, not just at the emotional payoff but the fact that everything went down so well and I could feel it, I could feel the perfection everywhere I looked. It’s upbeat, powerful, fun, charming, poignant, uplifting and all around likeable. Now only one question remains, what the hell was Ridley doing when he made Exodus and the Counselor, how could those be so terrible when he can make something as grand as this?


  1. Mad Max: Fury Road

Honestly, what else could the film of the year have possibly been? Mad Max Fury Road is one of the best action films ever made, if we were to put together a portfolio of those that define film as a whole, this would certainly be one of them. This movie is to action what Carol is to romance, what Lord of the Rings is to fantasy, what Star Wars is to sci-fi, George Miller has crafted an experience like no other, it seems to be the year of both Tom Hardy and practical effects, as much as I love films like Age of Ultron and Man of Steel as I have no problem with CGI, the practical effect has become what CGI was back when it was this great new thing. It’s exhilarating, a truckload of fun, impactful, just plain awesome and the fact that lines of dialogue have taken the Internet by storm and its characters have been hailed as some of the best ever prove that there’s a place in the history books for this one, oh yes.


Honorable Mentions

It’s frustrating because I really wish I could include these films on the list, but there simply isn’t room, you could say I should just make it a top 20 but that’s a bit of a cop out is it not? Just imagine that including them as honorable mentions is still an indication of their greatness and that they haven’t been pushed aside or deemed not good enough.

Star Wars Episode 7 – The Force Awakens
Star Wars is certainly back guys, no more of that prequel rubbish, I lovely return to form, can’t wait for Rogue One.


Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation
In a world where 5th installments often suck, Rogue Nation is freakin’ brilliant, constructed masterfully in every way, it has a gun disguised as a musical instrument for heaven’s sake.


Steve Jobs
Now that’s more like it, after the abomination starring Ashton Kutcher, simply good would have done, but this was simply great instead, an example of a brilliant biopic that all others should follow.


Dark, gritty, well directed, haunting, atmospheric and who could have believed it, Arnold Schwarzenegger can actually act, he’s great in this, no really, he’s legitimately great.


The Gift
Joel Edgerton has always been a great actor, but is he a good director? Absolutely, while not being the horror thriller the trailer would have us believe, it’s certainly a thriller, with no shortage of thrills, can’t wait to see what he does next.

Author: Jamie Robinson


Phil’s Quick Capsule Review & Friends FILMS TO WATCH For 2015 Part 2: The Final Girls, Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, Listen To Me Marlon, Green Room, The Martian, White God

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review & Friends FILMS TO WATCH For 2015 Part 2: The Final Girls, Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, Listen To Me Marlon, Green Room, The Martian, White God

Other Cr*p Quick Review Year In Review
The votes are in.  The long list has been reduced to just 12… and here they are, the Phil’s Quick Capsule Review & Guests list of the FILMS TO WATCH for 2015.

In no particular order:


#7: The Final Girls
A young woman grieving the loss of her mother, a famous scream queen from the 1980s, finds herself pulled into the world of her mom’s most famous movie. Reunited, the women must fight off the film’s maniacal killer.


#8: Me and Earl and the Dying Girl
High schooler Greg, who spends most of his time making parodies of classic movies with his co-worker Earl, finds his outlook forever altered after befriending a classmate who has just been diagnosed with cancer.


#9: Listen To Me Marlon
A documentary that utilizes hundreds of hours of audio that Marlon Brando recorded over the course of his life to tell the screen legend’s story.




#10: Green Room
A young punk rock band find themselves trapped in a secluded venue after stumbling upon a horrific act of violence.


#11: The Martian
During a manned mission to Mars, Astronaut Mark Watney is presumed dead after a fierce storm and left behind by his crew. But Watney has survived and finds himself stranded and alone on the hostile planet. With only meager supplies, he must draw upon his ingenuity, wit and spirit to subsist and find a way to signal to Earth that he is alive.



#12: White God
Thirteen-year-old Lili fights to protect her dog Hagen. She is devastated when her father eventually sets Hagen free on the streets. Still innocently believing love can conquer any difficulty, Lili sets out to find her dog and save him.




Next Time: Turd Of The Year for 2016! 

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review & Friends FILMS TO WATCH For 2015 Part 1: Straight Outta Compton, Inside Out, Mission Impossible Rogue Nation, Whiplash, Spring, Going Clear

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review & Friends FILMS TO WATCH For 2015 Part 1: Straight Outta Compton, Inside Out, Mission Impossible Rogue Nation, Whiplash, Spring, Going Clear

Other Cr*p Quick Review Year In Review

The votes are in.  The long list has been reduced to just 12… and here they are, the Phil’s Quick Capsule Review & Guests list of the FILMS TO WATCH for 2015.

In no particular order:

#1: Straight Outta Compton
The group NWA emerges from the mean streets of Compton in Los Angeles, California, in the mid-1980s and revolutionizes Hip Hop culture with their music and tales about life in the hood.

#2: Inside Out
After young Riley is uprooted from her Midwest life and moved to San Francisco, her emotions – Joy, Fear, Anger, Disgust and Sadness – conflict on how best to navigate a new city, house, and school.


#3: Mission Impossible Rogue Nation
Ethan and team take on their most impossible mission yet, eradicating the Syndicate – an International rogue organization as highly skilled as they are, committed to destroying the IMF.


#4: Whiplash
A promising young drummer enrolls at a cut-throat music conservatory where his dreams of greatness are mentored by an instructor who will stop at nothing to realize a student’s potential.




#5: Spring
A young man in a personal tailspin flees the US to Italy, where he sparks up a romance with a woman harboring a dark, primordial secret.


#6: Going Clear: Scientology And The Prison Of Belief
An in-depth look at the inner-workings of the Church of Scientology.



Next Time: The final 6 Films To Watch for 2015. 

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review & Friends: The 22 Must See Films Of 2015

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review & Friends: The 22 Must See Films Of 2015

Year In Review

So this is it…  LONG list of the best films of 2015. Our pick of the 22 best films of 2015, as voted for by our house staff (Ross Boyask, Phil Hobden, Matt Duddy, Drew Cullingham, Andrew MacKay & Josh Morris)

This will also form the basis of our short list to vote for the Film of 2015.  So how many have YOU seen?

Fast and Furious 7
Straight Outta Compton
Inside Out
No Escape
Mission Impossible Rogue Nation
It Follows
Ant Man
Shaun The Sheep
Going Clear
Mad Max Fury Road
Me and Earl and the Dying Girl
Listen To Me Marlon
Green Room
The Martian
White God
The Final Girls

Check back in the next few days for our final list… Take the QUIZ here