Showing posts from June 19, 2016

Review: Loser Takes All

Glynis Johns and Rosanno Brazzi are set to be married, but accountant Brazzi’s boss Robert Morley insists they get married in Monte Carlo at the company’s expense, spending their honeymoon on his yacht. So they go there, only to find that Morley is a no show, and their funds quickly drying up. Brazzi getting bitten by the gambling bug definitely doesn’t help. Their relationship also starts to hit seriously stormy seas, resulting in Johns being wooed by charming gambler Tony Britton, and Brazzi contemplating flirting with Shirley Anne Field. Sir Felix Aylmer plays an MIA co-owner of the business, and Geoffrey Keen plays a hotel employee who constantly pesters the couple. Surprisingly dull, uneventful 1956 romantic comedy from director Ken Annakin ( “The Informers” , “Swiss Family Robinson” , “Third Man on the Mountain” ) and screenwriter Graham Greene ( “The Third Man” , “Our Man in Havana” ), from his own novel. It’s the kind of film where you keep waiting for the real plot to

Review: Beauty and the Beast

Belle’s father has run afoul of a tempestuous Beast (voiced by Robby Benson, apparently with an assist by Optimus Prime), who locks him in his castle dungeon for trespass and generally interrupting his pity party. Belle (voiced by Paige O’Hara) comes looking for her father and offers up herself as his permanent prisoner in exchange for the Beast letting her father go. Over time, Belle sees the Beast for who he truly is: A man under a terrible curse that has rendered him ugly and pitiful. Meanwhile, the pompous Gaston (voiced by Richard White) rouses up a crowd of pitchfork-wielding townsfolk to slay the Beast, all because he’s jealous and wants Belle for himself.   By the time this acclaimed 1991 Disney animated film came out, I was around high school age, so it held absolutely no interest for me. That’s a shame, I now really wish I’d been acquainted with this all my life, because it’s clearly the best of Disney’s second wave of popularity in the animated feature department (

Review: Inside Out

The story of young Riley as mostly seen through the inside of her head where HQ is run by five emotions: Joy (voiced by Amy Poehler), Sadness (voiced by Phyllis Smith), Anger (voiced by Lewis Black), Fear (voiced by an unrecognisable Bill Hader), and Disgust (voiced by a thankfully unrecognisable Mindy Kaling). When Riley moves to San Francisco with her family, things start to take a downward turn for her. When things go really awry at her new school, both Joy (who tries to trigger positivity to cheer Riley up) and Sadness find themselves sucked out of HQ and into the vast storage space at the back of Riley’s mind, where old forgotten memories go. With only Anger, Fear, and Disgust at the helm and Riley’s emotional state worsening, Joy and Sadness try to make their way back to the control room. They also encounter Riley’s old imaginary friend, Bing Bong (voiced by Richard Kind).   OK, so first “A Bug’s Life” rips off “Three Amigos!” (which itself was a parody of “The Magnif

Review: 2 Fast 2 Furious

Paul Walker is no longer an undercover cop after the events of the first film. However, Federal agent Thom Barry requests his assistance in bringing down a drug baron named Carter Verone (Cole Hauser) who uses street racers to do the driving for his criminal exploits. Walker’s Brian O’Connor wants to recruit his childhood buddy Roman (Tyrese Gibson) to be his partner, rather than a suit who Verone will smell a mile off. Roman, by the way, is an impulsive, loudmouthed idiot who might just get them both killed, but hey, at least he’s a convincing driver, right? Eva Mendes plays an undercover agent who may have gotten too close to Verone, if you know what I mean. James Remar plays Mendes’ boss, whilst Ludacris turns up as the organiser of the street races, and Devon Aoki plays a pink car racer. ‘Coz she’s a girl.   The nadir of the franchise and a shameful moment in the career of the once very promising director John Singleton ( “Boyz ‘N the Hood” , the underrated “Higher Learni

Review: Trainwreck

Amy Schumer plays Amy, which is rather helpful for a non-actor to remember the name of their character, I suppose. As a child, Amy’s womanising father (Colin Quinn) seems to have passed down some bad behaviours, as now 30ish Amy has a similarly non-monogamous outlook on relationships. Yes she’s in a relationship with a likeable (but possibly gay) meathead played by John Cena (!), but she finds random (and frequently alcohol-fuelled) hook-ups to be more workable for her. That might just change, however, when for her job at Snuff magazine (yep, Snuff) her demanding boss Tilda Swinton assigns her the task of interviewing sports doctor Bill Hader. Despite Amy’s desire to keep things casual and preferably one-night only, she finds herself beginning a relationship with the boring but nice doctor. Meanwhile, Amy also has to contend with her father’s increasing MS that results in having to be put into assisted living care. She also has a sister (Brie Larson), who is everything Amy is not: