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Showing posts from March 31, 2019

Review: The Post

Set in the early 70s, this tells the story of the Washington Post getting a hold of a massive story that calls into question several American presidents in regards to America’s involvement in the Vietnam War. Owner Kay Graham (Meryl Streep) and Editor Ben Bradlee (Tom Hanks) are somewhat at loggerheads. Bradlee and his journos want to go to print with the story. Graham is getting pressure from investors to cool the jets and wait until a lawsuit involving The New York Times’ print of the same 4000-page document is settled. The White House (Presided over by the honest and virtuous Richard Nixon) obviously is very much not happy. Bob Odenkirk plays one of the journos, Bradley Whitford is a nervous Washington Post board member, and Bruce Greenwood is a friend of Graham’s caught up in the scandal.


You’d think with this subject, that cast, and Steven Spielberg (Director of most of your favourite movies) at the helm, this 2017 newspaper flick would be an “All the President’s Men” for the ‘fa…

Review: Stranger Than Fiction

Will Ferrell stars as ordinary fellow named Harold Crick, who works for the IRS, and also happens to have an inner monologue running through his head. Literally. In more than one sense of the term. Whilst Dustin Hoffman, as a literature professor tries to work out whether Harold’s story is a comedy or a tragedy (despite not believing a word of what Harold is telling him), Ferrell is getting frustrated with his every thought and action being described or commented upon. This inner monologue, voiced by Emma Thompson, is actually the troubled author of Harold’s life story, and unfortunately, Thompson has decided that in order for this story to work, poor Harold must die. Needless to say, Harold isn’t very happy about all this, especially since he has just struck up a tentative relationship with tattooed bakery shop owner Maggie Gyllenhaal, who is initially severely unimpressed at being audited by Harold on their first meeting (she’s a bit of an anarchist and possibly a little bit of a sa…

Review: Blockers

Three overly protective parents (Leslie Mann, John Cena, and Ike Barinholtz) learn their teenage daughters (Kathryn Newton, Geraldine Viswanathan and Gideon Adlon) have made a sex pact for prom night, and make plans of their own to stop it from happening. Bodily function humour ensues.


If your joke title has to be cut in half, surely it’s best to just call the film something else entirely, yes? This 2018 comedy is really “Cock Blockers”. It’s also really…not good. It’s the kind of film that in addition to a dirty joke title it can’t fully commit to, casts John Cena as an overly protective father and runs that one gag into the ground before the end of the first act.


Although the film has been directed by a woman named Kay Cannon (writer of “Pitch Perfect” and a novice director), it’s unsurprising to me that the film’s screenwriters are men: Jim and Brian Kehoe (writers of the very classy-sounding “The Hand Job”). That’s because for a film with predominantly female protagonists and purp…

Review: Farewell, My Lovely

Solid 1975 Dick Richards (the average horror flick “Death Valley”) version of the Chandler classic has a well-cast Robert Mitchum as a somewhat jaded Phillip Marlowe (though his voice-over narration is sadly not very well-written), as the dick investigates the apparent disappearance of hulking Jack O’Halloran’s girl. Charlotte Rampling is extremely underrated as the film’s alluring femme fatale. Some say she’s aping Lauren Bacall in the earlier film version, personally I thought she was doing the standard icy Rampling thing, and doing it well). Underrated character veteran John Ireland is rock solid as one of the few honest cops, with Harry Dean Stanton a less moral cop. Good roles for slimy Anthony Zerbe (sadly not in the film enough, playing a hood), Best Supporting Actress nominee Sylvia Miles (it’s her best work), and a trio of thugs played by Joe Spinell, grinning Burton Gilliam (the railroad boss from “Blazing Saddles”), and a young Sly Stallone (Kate Murtagh is also excellent a…

Review: Jet Li’s Fearless

In a fine performance, Jet Li plays real-life martial arts figure Huo Yuanjia, a Chinese martial arts master who starts out as a puny kid and wannabe tough guy, before becoming a louse and a vengeful bully (which has unfortunate consequences for his family, leading to his self-imposed exile), and ultimately, a national hero (China was looked down upon elsewhere in the world at the time) and founder of Jin Wu Sports Federation. This is due to his competing in a tournament where he, as a great Chinese Martial Arts Master, competes for his country against the best in the world in a tournament. It’s him alone against several other guys (including one American, played by Aussie-born former wrestler Nathan Jones), one at a time.


Billed as ‘Jet Li’s final martial arts epic’, this 2006 Ronny Yu (“Bride of Chucky”, “Freddy vs. Jason”) wushu film is a tad different to the usual wushu film. The period setting is there (early 20th century at any rate), as is the epic nature, but this is like “Blo…