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I’m thinking I’ve been neglecting this site for far too long.
Stay tuned!

I’m thinking of using the site more as a blog than a review site.  Basically i need somewhere to rant!

If you can to share thats cool!

I don’t really watch television when it’s on, I never know if I’m going to be in or out so keeping up to date with a particular series is about as easy for me as getting pandas to mate.  Luckily, we have various on-demand services such as the exceptional Iplayer, 4oD and various other websites.  So when I do watch a particular series, what do I watch?

Lie To Me

Based on the scientific research Paul Ekman, Tim Roth plays Dr Cal Lightman, a human lie detector.  After years of study, travel and less that reputable activities, Cal has learned how to read every involuntary move you make.  Lying to this man is nigh impossible.  You give away everything you try to hide with “micro expressions”.  Cal and his team investigate various cases for the FBI, the police and the needy.  Cal’s laid back attitude works well here, hiding his razor sharp mind.  Always one step ahead of his team and the suspect in question, he’s essentially the best con man in the world.  It’s a fun series, full of intriguing plots and genuinely amusing humour.

Supernatural

Imagine Buffy was a bloke, had a brother who could also kick ass and drove an awesome car.  That’s the basic premise of Supernatural.  Throw in angels, demons and Satan himself; the first 4 series saw the Winchesters trying to stop the Apocalypse.  Driven to succeed since they started of the chain of events that bring the end of the world, Sam and Dean trek from town to town dispatching ghosts, vampires and Paris Hilton.  I’m not kidding, she actually turned up in one episode and was promptly beheaded!  You can see there is a clear love for the show by all the cast.  Jim Beaver as Bobby, the boy’s go to guy for any advice be it lore or life is huge fun to watch.  Gruff, but with a heart of gold he’s always there for them.  One episode showed us what a normal day for Bobby was like and really opened up his character to the audience.

Human Target

Is someone trying to kill you?  Then you need to call The A Team!  Or you could contact Christopher Chance instead.  One time assassin and now protector, Chance hides in plain sight, luring would be killers out in to the open.  Sticking close to the intended victim, he waits for the right time and dispatches the threat once it presents itself.  But you want to know the best thing about this series? Jackie Earl Haley!  He’s has real career revival.  Since playing Rorschach in Watchmen and Freddy in the recent Nightmare on Elm Street revamp Haley has become in demand again. As Guerrero, he is by far the most interesting, disturbing and amusing character here.

So then what have I seen in the few months I disappeared in to oblivion? Well let’s give you a quick rundown of what I enjoyed and what I really didn’t!

Tron Evolution

What happened?  Did the directors think “Oh I know!  Remember how George Lucas ruined Star Wars with the prequels?  Let’s do that to Tron!”  I was deeply disappointed with this movie.  The one redeeming factor of this childhood raping abomination was Daft Punk’s amazing soundtrack.

Black Swan

If you are going to see this in the hope that you will see some lesbian action, I’m going to make it clear that there really isn’t any more here than what you will see on any late night movie on Channel 5.  What you do get though is a permanent look of fear on Natalie Portman’s face as she slowly driven insane.  This is not a film about ballet; this is a look into the life of a girl who is descending into hell, madness and terror.

The Green Hornet

I like Seth Rogen, there I said it.  He does what he does well! May people disagree and you are allowed to, doesn’t make you right though.  He’s taken the character of Britt Reid and made it more accessible for today’s audiences.  Jay Chou as Kato was a welcome and worthy successor to Bruce Lee.  His dead pan delivery provides a perfect foil to Rogen’s typical loud, obnoxious performance.  The only thing I wanted in the movie was for studio to release the reins on the stellar director, Michel Gondry.  This man is truly visionary and should be allowed to make whatever he wants!

True Grit

I’ve never really been in to the whole western scene, but I do like the Coen brothers.  It’s beautifully shot, capturing the sweeping landscapes of the old west.  Just looking at the vistas and sprawling scenery reminded me of the cinematography in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.  I could watch both movies with the sound off as they are just gorgeous to look at.  Jeff Bridges reclaims any respect I lost for him in Tron Legacy as Rooster Cogburn, although he could do with some elocution lessons.  Unlike Hailee Steinfeld, who performs with a sense of maturity rarely seen in such a young actor.

I’m sure I’ve seen more than this but can’t quite remember anything worth writing about!

OK, OK I know I’ve been quiet over the last six months.  I’ve started a new job and neglected the site for a long time.  It’s time to get back on the review horse and start writing again.  I’m also considering adding a Podcast to the site, so if any of you would like to get involved with that let me know!

I’ll try to keep you up to date with what I’ve been watching and playing and hopefully will give you something to listen to!

Cheers

Buck

I’ve been quiet for a while but Wez has decided to grace us with his review of Predators!

An “O.K” film that is not lacking in pace, but is lacking in the expected
rollercoaster ride an action film from this franchise should be. Someone
described this film as the equivalent of driving from Sheffield to London on
a Sunday morning on the M1. The pace may be fast, but there is little to
entertain you on the way.

I see this film as half a reboot and half a sequel. There is a direct
connection to the original 1987 Predator, but then again this is a whole new
kettle of ‘very ugly’ fish. There were a few blaring holes in the plot but
also some nice nods to the original.

If you go to see this film because of your liking for either Danny Trejo or
Laurence Fishburne. Save your money as their roles are nothing more than
cameos at best. Adrien Brody (King Kong, The Village and soon to be released
Splice) carries his role as action hero well. You can easily believe he is a
military type prepared to fight to the death, while at the same time looking
French, so that’s an accomplishment.

Alice Braga also did well, but her character appeared to be too close to
Lost’s ‘Ana Lucia Cortez’ played by Michelle Rodriguez (Fast & Furious,
Avatar and Resident Evil) for my liking.

By the end and much like an overweight relative sporting a Hawaiian shirt
and blowing a  vuvuzela, you see the plot points approaching a mile off.

It’s good to see a modern film that could so easily have gone down the CGI
intensive route show some restraint. This film is probably as close as you
can get to the old school methods of creating a sci-fi movie, without seeing
the fishing wire.

All in all I enjoyed this film even if the print did melt twice! See it if
you are a huge Predators fan. If not, wait until its out on DVD. Oh and if
you have seen the trailer with the scene with 10 or so Predator tri-lasers
on Royce (Adrien Brody). There is only one laser in theatrical version of
that scene. I personally hate it when trailers do not represent or
misrepresent a film like this.

7/10

Predators is on general release now in the UK.

I like a decent apocalyptic tale. Mad Max, Night of the Living Dead and The Devil Wears Prada, well that made me think the world had ended anyway.
Everything has been destroyed and inhabitants are scattered far and wide struggling to survive  In The Book of Eli one man has been given the task of taking a book “west” to where it will be safe from harm.  If you cant guess what the book is by now, please leave and never darken my site again.
Still here? Good. So along the way Eli meets scavengers, bandits and Michael Gambon.
In one town we find Carnegie played by Gary Oldman chewing up the scenery as usual.  He has been hunting for one particular book as he want to use it as a way to control the population.  Noticed the symbolism yet?  So Eli must continue his journey while dealing with Gary and his gang.
Now I love the look of this movie, bleak and desolate really don’t describe how bad the world we have here looks. Bleached out shots of barren landscape littered with craters from the war really ram home where we could be heading.
Denzel Washington kicks major ass and I was reminded of Liam Neeson’s brutality in Taken with each fight scene.
It’s a fun movie that tries far too hard to drive a message in your face.  The twist that comes near the end and would be a surprise to most, but on second viewing you can see the clues laid out for you to work it out.
The Book of Eli is available on DVD and Blu Ray on 31st May

Imagine having a life where all your opportunities are taken from you, where the love and care you want from your parents is filled with hatred and persistent degradation.
This is the world of Claireece “Precious” Jones. Sexually abused by a now absent father, not to mention made her pregnant twice.  Emotionally and physically tormented by a mother, played to perfection my Mo’Nique, Precious escapes in to fantasy to protect herself from reality.
Unable to read or write, she enrols an alternative school where she meets the inspirational Ms Rain.  From here on we are witness to a journey of self discovery, love and determination.
What surprised me the most about this movie is that it wasn’t based on a true story.  I’m sure that some elements are taken from life experiences, as is the way with all fiction. The level of realism of the story really hit hard.  Each character is well written and cast perfectly.  It’s easy to see why it’s the winner of two Academy awards and a Bafta.  Even Mariah Carey shines and that’s a first in her acting career.
I never saw this when it was in the cinema and that’s fine.  This is a very personal movie to the makers im sure.  So probably the viewing alone at home emphasises that point.
On the DVD are the some great cast interviews, some awkward public service announcements made for American television and a fantastic talk with director Lee Daniels and author Sapphire on who’s book the screenplay was adapted.

Precious is released on DVD and Blu Ray on 24th May

Now it has often been said that you cant choose who your family are.  Well in Dogtooth you really wish the children could.  Mum and Dad come from the school of parenting that would make Josef Fritzel proud.
In order to keep their children safe, they lock them away in a house in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by a giant fence and tell them about a “brother” that left and was shunned and disgraced.
Schooling is given by way of tapes where “words of the day” are read out with an accuracy that wouldn’t pass on Call My Bluff.  A “zombie” is said to be a small yellow flower, the “sea” is a large chair. Now I say children, but the two girls and boy are all in their late teens to early twenties, however being raised like this they haven’t really progressed in to adulthood.  Petty squabbles and childish games drive this point home right at the start of the film.
Dad brings home a female co worker to satisfy his sons sexual needs and she is known by all the family. This outsider soon upsets the balance created in this disturbing home and opens the doors for sexual experimentation and violence.
It’s not often we get a Greek movie here in the UK, however I think the masses wouldn’t know what to do with Dogtooth.  Being the winner of Un Certain Regard at Cannes and you can see why, it’s carefully shot, disturbing and strangely amusing in places, though that could be my dark sense of humour.
All in all I enjoyed Dogtooth but think it will be received in one of two ways, challenging, provocative filmaking or pretentious drivel.

Following on from our encounter with Dexter Morgan, here’s a look at another anti hero.

Richard B. Riddick
Built like a brick shithouse, able to see in the dark after a dubious prison health plan and a head that shines as much as his eyes.
First seen in Pitch Black Riddick was introduced to us as the most wanted man in the galaxy.  Evil, evil man.  A killer with no remorse, who’s well aware of who he is.  Adapting his own body to help with the stalking of his prey Riddick had his eyes “shined” to enable a permanent night vision.  This does mean he can be defeated with a wind up torch though.
No stranger to pain, he frees himself by dislocating both shoulders in a rather unsettling scene.  This was a man you didn’t mess with.
Later in the story we see a different side to Riddick.  Is he using these people for his own ends or does he actually care about what happens to them?  It’s left to us to decide.  Later came the less that stellar Chronicles Of Riddick, but I’m just gonna ignore that one.