Tuesday, 12 February 2019

JANUARY 2019 - FILMS + TV

A decent month's viewing - 7 films, 2 of them fantastic, 1 of them a re-watch and a couple of mini-series on TV - almost as I've yet to watch the final episode of the latest Luther series.


Wind River (2017)

Not a film I'd heard of until recently when an author interview with Finn Bell saw it hat-tipped and then seconded by Noirish blogger and film expert John Grant. My verdict - pretty bloody amazing. Jeremy Renner is fantastic, as is Elizabeth Olsen and the rest of the cast. The cinematography captures the cold and harshness of our setting superbly. I nearly had to put a coat on watching it. It's brutal, violent and a difficult watch at times, particularly the depiction of the attack on the victim, who's murder we are investigating and her boyfriend. Highly recommended.

From Wikipedia......

Wind River is a 2017 neo-Western murder mystery film written and directed by Taylor Sheridan. The film stars Jeremy Renner and Elizabeth Olsen as a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service tracker and an FBI agent, respectively, who try to solve a murder on the Wind River Indian Reservation in Wyoming. Gil Birmingham, Jon Bernthal and Graham Greene also star. According to Sheridan, the opening "inspired by true events" card was a reference to the "thousands of actual stories just like it" involving sexual assault of women on reservations, his primary motivation for writing the film.

Wind River premiered at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival and was released in the United States on August 4, 2017. The film received positive reviews from critics and was a box office success, grossing $45 million against an $11 million budget. While theatrically released by The Weinstein Company, in October 2017, following the Harvey Weinstein sexual abuse allegations, the film's distribution rights for home media were acquired by Lionsgate, with Weinstein's credits and logo being omitted on home media and streaming services, which caused TWC to lose distribution rights.

Dead Pool (2016)
My daughter's boyfriend is a massive Superhero film fan and he brought round the two film box set for us to watch over a couple of evenings. I was initially a reluctant viewer, but actually really enjoyed the first one a lot more than I was expecting to at least. Ryan Reynolds is watchable and the humour in the film tickled me. I must have been caught in an odd good mood when I watched it. I'll probably remember this one for a while.

From IMDB.....

A wisecracking mercenary gets experimented on and becomes immortal but ugly, and sets out to track down the man who ruined his looks.



Dead Pool 2 (2018)
More of the same and to be honest. My mood had soured a bit as the same kicks played for laughs a second time, wore a bit thin. Maybe if we had left it a month or so in-between one and two I might have enjoyed it a bit more. I just found it a bit tiresome after a while. Not the worst film ever though. Ryan Reynolds again.

From IMDB......

Foul-mouthed mutant mercenary Wade Wilson (AKA. Deadpool), brings together a team of fellow mutant rogues to protect a young boy with supernatural abilities from the brutal, time-travelling cyborg, Cable.



Tell No One (2006)
I read the Harlan Coben book a few years ago and enjoyed it without being stunned and amazed. Several people told me the film was good and a bit of post-Christmas charity shop browsing saw this one hoovered up. I really enjoyed it and the story came back to me as I watched. A French film and subtitled, but well worth a look if you get the chance. Assuming anyone else is about 12 or 13 years behind the times.

Harlan Coben - Tell No One (2001) - read in December 2012 - very sketchy thoughts here.

From IMDB ......

An accidental discovery near a doctor's estate stirs up some painful memories eight years after his wife's hideous murder, and now, things are bound to take a turn for the unexpected. Does the good doctor know more than he's letting on?


Manhunt (2019) - ITV drama

A 3 part mini-drama that I almost missed after seeing it advertised prior to airing. Fortunately I managed to catch up with the laptop as it was available on the ITV website, but not on the various catch up services available through my TV.

Martin Clunes has come a long way since his Men Behaving Badly days. He does serious pretty well. Interesting retelling of a police detective involvement running the investigation into the murder of young French women Amelie Delagrange in Twickenham in 2004. Terribly sad, particularly the scenes involving the young woman's parents. Disturbing how the friction between two police forces almost threatened the closure on another high profile case - the murder of Milly Dowler.

From Google.....

Looking at the work of Colin Sutton, who was the senior investigating officer in the hunt for Levi Bellfield, the killer of Marsha McDonnell, Amelie Delagrange and Milly Dowler in the early 2000s.


The Heat (2013)

A re-watch and just as funny second time around. I do like Melissa McCarthy, though she might not be everyone's cup of tea. Sandra Bullock grows on me, each time I see her in something.

From Google....

FBI Special Agent Sarah Ashburn (Sandra Bullock) is a methodical investigator with a long-standing reputation for excellence -- and arrogance. In contrast, foul-mouthed, hot-tempered detective Shannon Mullins (Melissa McCarthy) goes with her gut instincts and street smarts to remove criminals from the streets of Boston. Sparks fly when these polar opposites have to work together to capture a drug lord, but in the process, they become the last thing anyone expected -- buddies.
Release date: 31 July 2013 (United Kingdom)

Den of Thieves (2018)

I have a major problem investing in certain films and series where I have an irrational antipathy towards one of the main characters. Step forward Gerard Butler. I really don't like him and I don't know why. I did enjoy the film. Butler's character is a massive bell-end. He probably didn't have to extend himself to fulfil the requirements of the role - ha ha only joking. I did enjoy it, though would probably have enjoyed it more with someone else as the lead.

From Google.....

Nick O'Brien is the hard-drinking leader of the Regulators, an elite unit of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. Ray Merrimen is the recently paroled leader of the Outlaws, a gang of ex-military men who use their expertise and tactical skills to evade the law. O'Brien, Merrimen and their crews soon find themselves on a direct collision course as the criminals hatch an elaborate plan for a seemingly impossible heist -- the city's Federal Reserve Bank.

Luther Series 5 (2019) - BBC drama

Step forward bell-end number two - Idris Elba. Hand on heart, I loved him in The Wire, or at least the first series and a bit of it that I've watched thus far. Enjoyed him in the first couple of series of Luther. Loved the book by Neil Cross - Luther: The Calling, read in the pre-blog days. Then just got a bit jaded by seeing him everywhere. I don't believe I watched the third or fourth series, mainly because of him and my aversion. He gives off the impression (probably wrongly) that if he was made out of chocolate he would have eaten himself a long time ago. Either three episodes from four watched or four from five. I expect I'll finish it in February.



From the BBC....

Idris Elba stars as DCI John Luther, waging his own passionate and ruthless war on crime.

Calvary (2014)

Joint tied for film of the month with Wind River. I haven't enjoyed everything I've seen Brendan Gleeson in. The Guard was a bit lame. Didn't mind him in Harry Potter as "Mad-Eye" Moody, loved him in In Bruges with Colin Farrell. Quite a topical film for me with my Irish blood and Catholic upbringing. Very funny, very dark. I wouldn't mind watching it again in a year or so.

From Google....

An honest and good-hearted priest (Brendan Gleeson) wrestles with a cynical, spiteful community after he receives a death threat from an unknown parishioner.

12 comments:

  1. Glad you've had a good viewing month, Col. I saw Wind River, too, and I agree with you: it's violent and very hard to watch in some places. But it's a good story, I think.

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    1. Margot, it's a very good story. Brutal but not gratuitously so.

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  2. Col – Thanks for the tips. I will check out the Martin Clunes series, and the Brendan Gleason film looks good, too. We saw WIND RIVER in the movies – a very good flick.

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    1. MANHUNT was very interesting. I hope you can find it your side of the pond. I think you would enjoy CALVARY as well.

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  3. Col, I watched both WIND RIVER and THE HEAT, and I think I liked both, though I probably saw the latter for nothing better to do. I'd like to see TELL NO ONE and MANHUNT, as well as LUTHER which, I think, is available on Netflix. Frankly, I hardly watched any movies or television dramas in the past two to three weeks; there are times when I just go off viewing anything.

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    1. Sometimes I can go weeks without watching anything myself, Prashant. Other times the screen takes over from the books!

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  4. Glen and I liked Tell No One very much. I have the book but haven't read it yet. Wind River sounds good, I may give it a try, hope it isn't too brutal for me.

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    1. It does get a bit uncomfortable in places, but for the vast majority of the time I think you will be ok.

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  5. Ooh an interesting month's watching. Agree on Calvary, and The Heat is considered the perfect family watching treat in our house. Tell NO One I always remember for the scene where he runs and runs through the streets with U2 in the background - that scene has always stuck with me.

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    1. Maybe more in common than I would have thought. There's a few Melissa McCarthy films I could watch and re-watch - she always cheers me up!

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