One of my favourites! Loved this when I was a kid, especially the Grand
High Witch unveiling, which was obviously terrifying. As an adult it's just as enjoyable,
remembering the folklore that Dahl created at the beginning of the
film - such a good book as well. Really well acted, and just one of those films that you have to watch when it's on TV - when Iwatched it recently I realised I could quote large chunks of it offhand - ooops! A classic.
The Princess Bride
Found this disappointing at the time - maybe it's the CGI in me, but
this did feel terribly 80s. Maybe I needed to have seen it as a child,
at the time (as showing adult friends the Labyrinth just produced utter apathy). It's still
good fun for tea time viewing.
Miiiilton! This film is wonderful. "but...but...but I can burn the building down..." Milton is probably one of my favourite comedic film characters of all time, and he just steals this film (an excellent endearing performance from Stephen Root). An under the radar peach of a film following the misguided attempts of a group of disillusioned office workers to launder money from their company. Also boasts the title of most decent Jennifer Aniston film!
I hate, hate, hate animation that has a preachy, ethical message to it.
Cartoons are supposed to be visually beautiful, enoyable, surprising and
escapist and if they have to have a message, it's something emotionally
moral and rooted in all of us. I don't really want to be told about the
beneficial effects of recycling, the danger of obesity and how we are
screwing up the world when I am trying to have a bit of childish fun.
OK - rant over!
I am confused about what I think of this film though: not a patch on
Finding Nemo or Toy Story. In parts I caught myself switching off
completely and wondering what I'd missed! Other times the plot twisted
in a really interesting direction which I hadn't been aware of in the
promo for this, and so that kept me entertained.
WALL-E's hoard of junk was like Ariel's cave of wonders! Absolutely
loved the spork moment. Found him quite annoying at times, although
whenever there was a threat to his relationship with EEEEEEVAH tears
were rolling down my face like I was a loon!
So up and down, wow and meh, not sure if I would watch it again and
Pixar need to stop being so up themselves.
Oh and PS - I ADORED Presto! Even the bunny was fab!
I'm afraid I just don't get this superhero shtick. Whilst I'm led to
believe this is one of the more "realistic" interpretations that has
been done (I haven't seen any of the Batman films, but I can have a good
guess) it still seemed pretty ridiculous at times. Christian Bale's
attempt at portraying intense and charismatic through his voice just
made me think of Jim Carrey putting on the wise-guy accent from Me,
Myself & Irene - he may as well have stuck out his finger, tilted
his chin and clicked his tongue. (Not that I have anything against
Christian Bale, he's a fine actor)
I lost interest half way through, mainy because I don't know the
background to any of Bruce Wayne's antics and therefore had no idea what
was going on or who was who. I loved the setting of Gotham City though,
superbly macabre and gothic. And what's the deal with the Katie Holmes
bashing? She was perfectly reasonable in this.
Maybe I've been caught up in the Dark Knight/Heath
The Dark Knight
Amazing! 100x better than Batman Begins, which was: "let's get the
boring bit out of the way, and now we're onto the proper stuff!"
Even the start sequence is destined to cult status - the film doesn't
let up for a second. Towards the end of the brilliant brilliant middle
sequence I found myself thinking "I don't want this to end!" - if it had
ended with the death of Rachel, then it would have been perfection and
worthy of five stars.
The ending let it down slightly - why scramble up a Harvey Dent/Two Face
mini storyline in the last 30 mins when the film has already been
stolen by the Joker? I was really expecting the transformation to set it
up for the next film. I did like how the film ended though, and Two
Face was pretty ridiculous as a villain, so maybe it was worth it in the
Can't praise Heath Ledger enough - WHAT A WASTE. I can't believe we'll
never see this man do anything again. Rest of the cast were so-so.
Maggie G's neck was really annoying me throughout.
I wanted my cinema audience to clap when the truck flipped over as well!
But at least everyone erupted into laughter when Heath Ledger revealed
himself in the nurse's costume, sat down, preened himself and then said,
Taut, well acted and monochrome drama which addresses the latest taboo
subject with some deftness. I say "some" because there's nothing truly
shocking in this film (other than the actions of Hayley) and it's only
an 18 because of the subject matter.
I found parts of the film quite slow and "chatty", and then I guessed
one of the big double bluffs because they strung it out so much. But I
did like the psychological twist at the end, and how ambiguous Hayley's
By golly, Ellen Page is a bit of a star isn't she? She's got a few
Oscars coming her way.
Angus, Thongs and Perfect Snogging
Well it wasn't hugely bad - it was pretty average throughout and in some
places utterly dire, but then some bits were quite funny (mainly
involving Angus and the stuffed olive) and overall, I'd probably just
call it nice. Good things: a) The Nicholson family was cast really well. I really liked Georgia
Groome - she's not overly pretty, but she's a good actress, b) I thought they did sentiment really well, if a tad too much. It really
knocked me back to the days of high school and stalking around the 6th
form boy you fancy! The trying to dance away from a boy who clearly
wants to dance with you bit made me cringe soooo much! c) Whelk boy was AMAZING. Such a talented little actor, with an
interesting face! He was so funny when he was moping after her. The
whole snog lesson set up was brilliantly done.
- they tried their best to keep to the books, and I appreciate that. I
still think they could have done more, but at least they had a go.
And now the bad things: a) WHERE THE HELL WAS JAS'S FRINGE?! I mean, honestly, ask any Georgia
fan the first word to describe Jas and they would say fringe. And they
cast someone who is much too tall, too assured looking, with a big
forehead and they make her wear a THONG! A THONG! Jas is famed for her
big knickers. And that leads me to... b) the casting of the Ace gang was so, so so WRONG. Rosie looked like one
of those skanks you get in schools who wear too much eye make up and
constantly walk around with their mouths open. Sven was barely in it, Dave the Laugh looked like one of those annoying
smelly boys who has fleas and was not attractive AT ALL, Wet Lindsay was
suddenly 'Slaggy' Lindsay with no flat chest at all, Tom was
practically a skin head and Robbie was all moochy moochy over his newly
implemented cat. Who the hell does the research for these things?!
Utterly bonkers. And they missed out Hawkeye, and Elvis - who was one
the main characters in the first book (however: Miss Stamp was
brilliant). c) Some of the acting was absolutely dire, and Eleanor Tomlinson needs to
go and bash her head against a wall so she can loosen up a bit. Steve Jones can just fuck off. d) Where were the berets?! e) The ending was complletely ridiculous, predictable, unbelievable and
melodramatic. Very Mean Girls, actually, except in ATAPS Georgia's
bitchiness is glossed over and there is no recompense at all for her
actions. She just gets a massive party with a band. Ha! If only high
school life was really like that...
It was all very feel good though, and sweet in lots of ways. I guess I
wouldn't be so harsh if the books weren't so substantially better.
I wonder if they'll do another. I wonder if it will be any better and
less cheese-fest and safe. I wonder if they'll actually get Louise
Rennison to HELP next time around. She was what was missing from this
film: the god damn author.
Breakfast at Tiffany's
Cute little film, and I wish I could say more about it, but you know
when a friend lends you a DVD and you just don't get around to watching
it, and then you sort of have to rush watch it, at a time when you're
not really in the mood so you can give it back to them?!
So I did miss a lot of what was going on (have no idea why she was
arrested), and it was all a bit cliched watching it today, but it was
still really sweet and I loved the "let's have a day of doing things
we've never done before!" and the rainy alley scene at the end.
Audrey was sweet, too. I probably should watch it again under better
AWESOME film, one of my favourites of the year so far. I just wish
someone would find the technology to clone Del Toro so we could get
twice as many films out a year because he is an absolute genius.
The special effects were thoroughly outstanding, jaw dropping. The Giant
rising from the Giants Causeway was one of the best revelations I have
seen in terms of sheer impact, and the forest spirit attacking Brooklyn
Bridge was also wonderous. Very similar to Pans Labyrinth with the
monsters/drawing, yet he makes them all so intrinsicly different, scary and
amazing to look at.
But what made the film so enjoyable were the characters and the humour -
just the right balance, it stopped it from being so ruthless. LOVED
LOVED LOVED the bit in the middle where Hellboy and Abe get really drunk
and start singing "can't smile without you" and Seth MacFarlane was
hilarious as Johann Krausse. JA, JA!
There were also some great story dimensions as well which made it deeper
(although it was all about the action bits) and hopefully sets us up
for a third.
Oh God, one of the most depressing and horrible endings I have seen for a
long time! I was laughing along, closing it all off in my mind when I
suddenly remembered it didn't have a happy ending. And then it got
worse, and then the twist came and it was just HORRIBLE! But also really
cleverly done (Stephen King in quite good shocker alert!), and it
definitely gave the film a credible factor, because it did start off
quite silly with the tentacles and giant bugs and spiders.
There's something quite indulgent in King adaptions. I quite want to get
the Langoliers now... Oh yes, and I was SO pleased when they finally shut that religious nutter
up. Never have I ever wanted to enter a movie so much and pull the god
damn trigger myself.
I cannot fault this film: I remember seeing this in the HPPH brochure a
few years ago and it was on my birthday, and it just looked sooo
amazing, it was such a treat to see it then!
Every time I watch it, I keep seeing and loving more things about it.
One of my favourite things is the attention to detail Del Toro makes to
every single little thing: from the Pale Man, right down to the little
mandrake root. How he came up with this story is just beyond me - again,
I hail to the man's geniosity. Such a legend.
As well as the mythology which he has created himself, he has also
managed to create such a diverse, rich script which begs the question at
the end: what was reality and what was fantasy? Is what you perceive
the truth or is it a mask? It really divides opinion, and I love showing
this film to people - not because they'll be blown away by the fantasy
sequences - but because I love to see how people have interpreted the
story. I seem to be the only one who thinks it's a happy ending though!
A perfect adult fairytale.
Girl With a Pearl Earring
There's something really quiet about this drama which I liked: it
doesen't become overly melodramatic, or bogged down by technicalities -
every scene feels so delicately put together, almost like painting
I knew nothing of the story going into this, so the climax being what
the whole film is about was very well done, and meant it didn't peak too
soon. Scarlett was very similar to the character she played in The Other Boleyn Girl,
and I think she plays both meek and minxy really well. Colin Hanks with
long hair was a right ole giggle. It was all played seamlessly though -
understatement being the key: the power of the unsaid.
Enjoyable to watch, and it's a good tale on love and jealousy too, as
well as the birth of a famous painting.
Also - why on earth does Cillian Murphy keep popping up in all the films
I watch? I swear he's become stuck in my DVD player and can't get out!
The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou
There's something really comforting about a Wes Anderson film: whether
it's the quirky humour, the solidly good story telling or the presence
of Bill Murray (who is excellent in pretty much everything he does).
This film is great fun to watch, and as always, you come to love the
bumbling characters and their little ways. But not one of his finest.
As a horror film, it's pretty competent.
When comparing it to Ils however, it's a pale comparison. It starts off
promising (the masks definitely do add a degree of horror to the story,
and there were a couple of jumpy moments) but then it reeeeally drags in
places, and that's unusual for an 85 minute film.
Bringing in a friend who gets caught out in the cat & mouse chase added a
new dimension it did not need. And what on EARTH was the deal at the end
when Liv Tyler wakes up? Is she dead or not?! What a cheap ending.
Ils left me feeling depressed and shaken, but this just left like
another stalk and slash. Better than other offerings of late, but within
the home invasion genre, it's pretty poor.
The Darjeeling Limited
I love this film. Watching it a second time around just made me love
the characters even more. I love how pathetic they all are, and their
hilarious fantasy that a 'spiritual' journey will make them all
closer and better people, and it's just a catastrophe!
I love how each brother cements his role in the family: Owen Wilson is
particularly brilliant as the older brother who has to control
everything. Such good mini characters as well: Brendan has got to be the
The dialogue is also wonderfully dry, and filled with sibling bitchery.
The way they see through all of Jack's fictional pieces is brilliant. Of
course, the line of the film has to be: "I love you but I'm going to
mace you in the face!"
I also love the music, the way it links with Hotel Chevalier (ahem), the
cinematography... now I really want to go on a longhaul train ride through
The Blair Witch Project
Wow, I haven't seen this film for nine years; since I went to see it at
the cinema for my 15th birthday (where I wore clunky 90s heels as I
recall.) I swear I either went to see a different film or I invented it
all up in my head: this is COMPLETELY different to how I remembered it.
I thought there were more eyes & hat shots, and at the end I thought
we actually saw the witch figure standing in the corner - how jumbled
up I was!
In fact, I enjoyed it a lot more this time (probably because I am more
intelligent and not so pre-occupied by "wooo at the cinema on my own
with my friends seeing my first certificate 15!") because I'm quite used
to this style of film now - I think back in 1999 everyone thought this
was really weird, and cheap. But this style makes it so much more
realistic and chilling (see [rec]), particularly the voodoo bits in the
trees, and the sense of helplessness when they realise they are going
around in circles.
It also made me think about what was happening to them in a much more
in-depth way. Why were they getting lost? Is it a feature of the wood,
or is there some greater force present? What noises did they hear at
night and how was something able to creep up to their tent and leave
offerings without being noticed? And most of all: who on EARTH was
carrying the video camera in the last 20 seconds?
I think this film is so undervalued for what it is, and the effort they
went into producing this so it looks the real deal is a great testament.
There are also loads and loads of theories as to what actually
happened, leaving the film open to interpretation and oooh: I do like
that in a film!
Really, really enjoyed this. I love my dark school stories (adolescents
are so easily manipulated), and the premise for this really interested
me, especially the setting in Germany. It really forces you to think of
what it's like growing up there, and how they are taught about Nazism.
I love how the kids are sucked into the Wave and are thrown on its
destructive path. It preys on all their insecurities - boyfriends,
friends, clothes, bullying - and gives them this deluded sense of power
through belonging to a unit. It just shows how something done with the
right person, in the right climate, can be so dangerous.
The film built suspense up really well as it led to the disturbing
ending. No over dramatics, just a heightened sense of paranoia that nods
nicely to the 1940s regime.
Intelligent script, rocky soundtrack, great young performances - hurrah
for German cinema at its finest.
Not as amazing as I thought it was going to be: although I had just seen The Wave so I had high expectations!
I thought the beginning was a little rushed, and they could have taken
some more time to explain the background to the experiment and what they
were looking to achieve, rather than just starting it. And the scenes
with the love interest were not needed either: they didn't seem to serve
any purpose at all.
On the up side, this film raises so many questions, the main one being:
if the roles had been switched around, would the events still have
turned out the same? Is it individuals who have the power, or is it the
power which has the people? Contentious stuff.
Oooh, I wanted this to be more amazing than it was. It didn't quite
manage to make the most of the two-tierred storytelling and I'm not sure
why. Visually it was stunning, and some of the shots they used really
set it apart, and the two leads were great too: nice to see Lee Pace
playing someone a bit darker than in Pushing Daisies, and oh my, little
Catinca was gorgeous! Such a talented little thing, she's sure to go
I think the two main gripes were the story wasn't strong enough: even
though it cleverly used characters from real life (ala Wizard of Oz) and
the fluidity of the storytelling was also quirky, it was quite messy at
times and jolted too much without being clear that it was shifting
perspective. And enough wasn't explained to us about the characters and
their world: a thing, I guess, Roy wouldn't think to put in because he
has no real enthusiasm for what he's telling, but that's a poor kop out
for the viewers. Also, the background of the characters in real time
wasn't well established - spent half the time trying to work out what
era and country the hospital was set in!
Overall it was good fun, a nice bit of escapism that isn't that
dissimilar to a Terry Gilliam film, or even the recent Mirrormask. But it could
have done with a bit more concrete before dancing on it.
The Lives of Others
Another gem of a film. Completely engrossing throughout, and even though
no clear reason is ever given as to why Wiesler comes to be on the side
of the couple, it doesn't spoil the plot of the film at all.
This gives a real insight into a period of history I didn't know much
about and it really had not progressed that much from the Nazi regime 40
years before it which is astonishing. I got really involved with the
film, especially when the poet was so adamant that his flat was safe.
NO, NO, NO!
Thank goodness for Wiesler, who was the central heart of the film
(strangely) and such a complex, interesting character. Just when you
think it's all been for nothing, you realise he HAS changed, and the way
he embraces this change is strong and inspiring.
I lovvvvved the ending when he buys the book; it wasn't sentimental
enough to have me crying my eyes out, but there were a few tears! It
wasn't all for nothing after all!
Ahh, it was so well acted and so tightly put together. What a shame
Ulrich Muhe isn't with us anymore :( Defiinitely deserved its Oscar win.
Not as good as I remembered it, to be honest! I love the story of it,
and Maleficient is one of my favourite Disney villains - loved
everything about her castle on the Forbidden Mountain. But I like my
Disney characters to say things! Aurora and Philip barely spoke at all,
and I think it would have added so much more if they had. Perhaps I am
conditoned to the "newer" forms of Disney - and this is one of the older
ones - but it did lack a little something.
It's very nostalgic though, and brought back lots of memories. I love
the scene where they bake the cake and make the dress and fight over the colours (psst, blue!).
Into The Wild
NOOOOOOOO I was so disappointed with this! I found the storytelling
vague, the background scanned over without providing any real reasons as
to why he decided to do what he did. The main problem was the main
character himself: he was pretentious, acted like every word he spoke
was a wise insight (at 23!), selfish, righteous and bah - he needed
taking down a peg or two!
Found his death at the end a kop out (I wasn't aware it was a true story
until the end credits) - of course they couldn't have changed it, but
they could have damn well made a better job of squeezing the sympathy
out of this viewer. I was just past caring after a point.
I just feel the whole thing could have been done so much better. Less
jumping around, more linear. More actual detail on the character and the
relationship with his family. How are we supposed to guage things from
small, clipped scenes?
Such a let down.
Have I seen too much disturbing stuff in my time or is this film
completely overrated? I'm afraid it didn't leave me with anything other
than a half hearted meh, and a wave of the hand.
There were some nice parts: I like the beginning in the tunnel, and the
flashback as to how Saskia is actually abducted. 'Twas a little freaky,
especially as it was all done in a busy daylight scene. But that was
about it: didn't care for the main character, thought the villain was
more 'wacky' than the stuff of nightmares, and - buried alive? Really?
is that the most ingenious, inventive thing you can come up with? I was
expecting it to be clever, something you would never think of happening,
such that it would haunt you for days afterward. Not so.
Perhaps I am too desensitized to it all now, but, meh....
I find this film so precious. I love every single moment of it: every
character, the funny quirks, the one liners, the brilliantly imagined
story, all the soppy mush. I LOVE IT!
I remember watching this in the cinema, and everyone was enjoying it so
much, it was really lovely - that feeling stays with me every time I
watch it. Definitely a film I could watch over and over again, and
become more and more enchanted by. Yvain and Tristan are soooo sweet (I
actually think the more I watch this film, the more I fall a teeny bit
in love with Charlie Cox, to the point where very soon it will be a big
ol' crush) - I love how detailed they are with her shining every time he
touches her. It's brilliant! I heart the mouse scene, too.
Everything with Robert De Niro is AMAZING. I can't believe they made all
that up for the film: quite disturbing, if you think about it...
Michelle Pfeffier is wonderful to watch too, but I actually think my
favourite characters are the princes - both alive and as ghosts. There's
some amazing British talent there - I think Mark Heap is the perfect Dr
Statham/Tertius crossover! Mark Strong has some of the best scenes as
well, because he plays the role so straight - when he discovers Captain
Shakespeare, when he's drowning-sword fighting at the end, and my
faaaaaavourite moment of the whole film: when he kills Ferdy and walks
off snapping, "FREAK!" I think it's hilarious!
I love how they made a fairytale so witty and so dark and yet still
managed to keep it within the realm of fantasy, topped off with a happy
ending. I sob at the end every time - this film is pure joy in a little