Sunday, 21 August 2016

JULY 2016 - FILMS AND TV

Another decent month's viewing - good films, bad films and only a bit of TV drama.

An Irish cop drama set in a fictional small town. My eyes lit up when I saw this was airing on BBC daytime daily. Unfortunately the scheduling was such that all 40 episodes were being shown, I guess over an 8 week period. I set the player to record the series, but while enjoying the show couldn't maintain the hectic viewing pace required to keep up. Each episode is approx 45 minutes long. I enjoyed 7 or 8 then hit delete, as no-one in the family could record anything because I had eaten up all the recording hours. I was really enjoying it, so will keep an eye out for it appearing on Netflix.

Small town cops, drugs, a murder, blackmail and an overriding feud  between two families, a police officer messing around with the underage school friend of his own daughter and a rookie cop who is wise to him. Lots to like about this one. 

New Blood and the continuation of another 2 episode story line with a couple of cops one of Polish extraction, one of Iranian. Penned by Anthony Horowitz, I'll finish this off, probably when the Olympics is over.

Another hard-hitting and brutal British film starring Eddie Marsan. Marsan is a drunk who takes pity on a teenage girl sleeping rough. Little does he know what he's just let himself in for. Didn't quite buy the ending, but up until then it was gripping and compulsive viewing. Tom Sturridge is quite chilling as our gun-wielding young thug.

A film I quite enjoyed without feeling the urge to see it again the second it was over. Ye Olde Victorian magicians taking their rivalry a bit too far. I was rooting for the Bale fellow throughout, boo to Hugh Jackman. Very clever, though I kind of saw through one of the character's disguises before the big reveal. I did like Michael Caine in this also.

What a pile of old shit - lasted about 10 minutes before hitting stop and then delete. I don't think I'm a massive Dan Aykroyd fan anyway to be honest. My wife wasn't up for this, left on my own I would possibly have persevered. It could only have improved.

My daughter's big idea. What a waste of celluloid. I caught snippets of the first and it was 10 x better than this lame affair.

Really enjoyable - eco terrorism and the infiltration of the group by an undercover operative working for Meryl Streep's powerful company. Our undercover oppo eventually questions her loyalties. Brit Marling was superb, I don't think I've seen her in anything before. 

Enjoyable if far-fetched espionage romp with old Bruce and John Malkovitch. Obviously not taking itself too seriously but I think my enjoyment perhaps suffered by not seeing the original. 

Another cracking film. Phillip Seymour Hoffman and his brother Ethan Hawke commit an unthinkable crime. Albert Finney, their father - wonders where it went wrong with his two boys? Highly recommended. Now this one I could have watched again the second it finished.

Synopsis.......While still a teen himself, Donny (Adam Sandler) fathered a son,Todd (Andy Samberg), and raised him as a single parent. On Todd's 18th birthday, Donny cut the youth loose. After years of estrangement,the older man shows up unexpectedly on the eve of his son's wedding day, sending the young man's life into a tailspin. Donny wants desperately to reconnect with Todd, but he must now deal with the repercussions of the bad parenting he exhibited in the past.
I saw some scathing reviews of this after having watched it. I do like Andy Samberg (Brooklyn 99) and I've enjoyed a fair few Adam Sandler films over the years, most notably The Wedding Singer and Fifty First Dates. Me and mine really enjoyed it. Infantile, puerile, rude, crude, bawdy, childish, offensive - a tick in every box. Funny as fuck. Sometimes you want to watch a film where you can leave your brain at the door and it gets played strictly for laughs. Probably not one to show my mum or mother-in-law when they're over at Christmas!

Stellar cast and another great British movie from about 15 years ago. Michael Caine dies and the gang of friends and his son, Ray Winstone are left with carrying out his final wishes - disposing of his ashes. We delve back into the past and see the war,  the establishment of a life-long friendship, the blossoming of a young romance, a marriage, some rocky spells and a child that is the source of a deep division between Caine and his wife Helen Mirren. Does Bob Hoskins rise to the occasion and do the decent thing at the end? Watch it and find out.

Another Friday night horror film. Haven't finished it yet. Not at all scary, more of a comedy. Maybe I'm just getting braver!

10 comments:

  1. I want to see Red Rocks, too, Col! It sounds like a really good show. And Before the Devil Knows You're Dead looks terrific, too. Glad you found some things to really enjoy.

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    1. I hope you get the chance to see RED ROCK, it's quite a decent series. Shame about the scheduling - it just beat me. Twice a week and I would have been fine. Phillip Seymour Hoffman really was a talent, he's very good again in AND BEFORE THE DEVIL KNOWS.....

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  2. Col, I didn't care for THE PRESTIGE though some of my friends liked it. I found it a bit of a drag. LAST ORDERS is what I'm looking forward to watching. I try not to miss any of Michael Caine's movies.

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    1. Prashant, I enjoyed THE PRESTIGE a lot more than I thought I would as I'm not a massive fan of things set in the era. LAST ORDERS would be my preferred pick of the two if I had to have a re-watch!

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  3. I had to comment on Grosse Pointe Blanke. I loved it and it is a favorite in our household. Can't remember exactly how different the first 10 minutes is from the rest of the movie. There is a lot of violence, but I like the story. Sorry you did not like it. Except for RED 2 (which I also loved), not familiar with anything else here.

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    1. Maybe it was a case of wrong film wrong time and we ought to have given it more of a chance.... RED2 was good but not great in my opinion.

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  4. Col – I agree, BEFORE THE DEVIL KNOWS YOU’RE DEAD is a really good film, terrific cast and made by the late, great Sidney Lumet who also directed SERPICO, DOG DAY AFTERNOON, PRINCE OF THE CITY, NETWORK, THE VERDICT, and a lot of other excellent movies.

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    1. Elgin - a few there for me to look up thanks. I may have seen SERPICO years ago but the others definitely not.

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  5. Members of my family are watching Red Rock, and like you they say that it is hard to cope with the sheer quantity of epis, but that it is very good.
    The Prestige and Last Orders are two films that I absolutely love, both of them excellent.

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    1. Yes I think they mucked up with the scheduling of RED ROCK, a gentler pacing would surely reach a bigger audience? I would re-watch LAST ORDERS over THE PRESTIGE, but liked it well enough. One time only for me though!

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