Thursday 7 November 2019


A good time continued to be had by all with the cinema passes, 7 films in the month (and after a quick tot-up, a running total of 36 for the 6 months or so that we've had them.)

Wow, looking back it seems absolutely ages ago I saw some of these and in truth if I hadn't logged them down after watching them, I would struggle to remember some of them, which isn't to say I didn't enjoy them.

Hustlers (2019)

I don't know if this one is kind of based on a true story, I think I heard it was (from my daughter) or the closing credits might indicate as such, or I might be off my trolley and made it up.

Enjoyable overall. Jennifer Lopez looks a lot better than me at 50, say no more. 

I liked the film, but didn't feel the urge to see it again immediately afterwards and I haven't added the DVD to my Christmas list for Santa. Sometimes I kind of struggle to be convinced by nice girls as criminals or desperadoes. (Not in the case of The Kitchen, last month but definitely here.)

From Google.....

Working as a stripper to make ends meet, Destiny's life changes forever when she becomes friends with Ramona -- the club's top money earner. Ramona soon shows Destiny how to finagle her way around the wealthy Wall Street clientele who frequent the club. But when the 2008 economic collapse cuts into their profits, the gals and two other dancers devise a daring scheme to take their lives back.

Release date: 13 September 2019 (United Kingdom)
Director: Lorene Scafaria
Based on: "The Hustlers at Scores"; by Jessica Pressler
Producers: Jennifer Lopez, Will Ferrell, Adam McKay, Benny Medina, Jessica Elbaum, Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas

The Goldfinch (2019)
Apparently panned by the critics, but I really liked it. I had kind of toyed in previous years with reading Donna Tartt's book but was always put off by the length of it. I don't feel the urge to now.

I did read a similar book of a missing stolen/saved painting and its journey through the centuries, with Deon Meyer's short novella - The Woman in the Blue Cloak. I don't know whether I feel like he copied her homework now after watching the film, or maybe it's a homage or hat-tip.

Quite long, I don't think I knew the main character actor, but he was very good. Quite sad in places. Maybe a bit of a stretch with the conclusion and the taking back of control of the painting, I wasn't entirely convinced by that element. I'd definitely watch it again in a couple of years when it makes an appearance on TV. I always enjoy Sarah Paulson on screen and I quite like Luke Wilson as well, though he usually plays a good guy.

From Wikipedia...

The Goldfinch is a 2019 American drama film directed by John Crowley and written by Peter Straughan, adapted from the 2013 novel of the same name by Donna Tartt. The film stars Ansel Elgort as a young man whose life is transformed after his mother dies in a terrorist bomb attack at a museum, from which he takes a famous painting called The Goldfinch. Oakes Fegley, Aneurin Barnard, Finn Wolfhard, Sarah Paulson, Luke Wilson, Jeffrey Wright, and Nicole Kidman appear in supporting roles.

Film rights to the novel were sold to Warner Bros. and RatPac Entertainment with ICM Partners brokering the deal. Two years later, Crowley was hired to direct the film adaptation and Elgort was selected to portray the lead role of Theodore Decker; much of the rest of the cast joined from October 2017 to January 2018. Filming began in New York City in January 2018, before moving to Albuquerque in April 2018 for the rest of production.

The Goldfinch premiered at the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival and was theatrically released in the United States on September 13, 2019, by Warner Bros. Pictures. The film received generally negative reviews from critics and was a box-office bomb, with estimated losses for the studio as high as $50 million.

The Day Shall Come (2019)

Wasn't totally blown away by this one, though it certainly made me laugh in places. A bit weak and a bit flat overall though. Anna Kendrick plays an FBI agent trying to set up a poor preacher in a domestic terrorist sting. I liked the snidey competition and oneupmanship on display from the Bureau as well as the incompetence. And I quite liked the preacher man and his band of brothers, but the two together just didn't really gel for me.

From Google....

An impoverished preacher who brings hope to the Miami projects is offered cash to save his family from eviction. He has no idea his sponsor works for the FBI, and the FBI plans on turning him into a criminal by fuelling his revolutionary dreams.

Release date: 11 October 2019 (United Kingdom)
Director: Chris Morris
Music by: Chris Morris; Sebastian Rochford; Jonathan Whitehead
Box office: 26,972 USD
Screenplay: Chris Morris, Jesse Armstrong

Abominable (2019)
Animation with a yeti, a mad scientist and a gang of teenagers. Enjoyable and I'm glad I was persuaded to watch it. Don't make me watch it again though, unless it with grandchildren in about 10 years time.

From Google...

After discovering a Yeti on the roof of her apartment building, teenage Yi and her two friends embark on an epic quest to reunite the magical creature with his family. But to do so, they must stay one step ahead of a wealthy financier and a determined zoologist who want to capture the beast for their own gain.
Release date: 11 October 2019 (United Kingdom)
Director: Jill Culton
Budget: 75 million USD
Box office: $128.7 million

Music composed by: Rupert Gregson-Williams

A Shaun the Sheep Movie: Farmageddon (2019)

Another one which I liked and didn't threaten to fall asleep during, but of the two animated films in the month I'd definitely pick Abominable above this one.

From Google....

When an alien possessing strange powers crash-lands near Mossy Bottom Farm, Shaun the Sheep quickly makes a new friend. Together they must run from a dangerous organisation who wants to capture the intergalactic visitor.

Release date: 18 October 2019 (United Kingdom)
Directors: Will Becher, Richard Phelan
Music composed by: Tom Howe
Distributed by: StudioCanal
Producer: Paul Kewley

Joker (2019)

WOW, WOW, FUCKING WOW. Believe the hype, I really loved this one. Joaquin Phoenix is incredible, intense, manic and a skinny bastard - I could only dream my stomach was half that size! My wife said he lost 3 stone for the role. Time to find my motivation.

I loved Robert DeNiro as well. I always do.

Funny, sad, violent..... my kind of film.

I did disagree with my daughter over whether Arthur's (Joker's) dad was the man his mother thought he was, or whether she was was actually delusional and very ill and it wasn't a cover-up-cum-conspiracy to hoodwink her. Maybe a second viewing would put that one to rest.

From Google...

Forever alone in a crowd, failed comedian Arthur Fleck seeks connection as he walks the streets of Gotham City. Arthur wears two masks -- the one he paints for his day job as a clown, and the guise he projects in a futile attempt to feel like he's part of the world around him. Isolated, bullied and disregarded by society, Fleck begins a slow descent into madness as he transforms into the criminal mastermind known as the Joker.

Release date: 4 October 2019 (United Kingdom)
Director: Todd Phillips
Cinematography: Lawrence Sher
Box office: $776.7 million
Music composed by: Hildur Guðnadóttir

Terminator Dark Fate (2019)

Another one I had been looking forward to ever since the trailers started hitting the screen a while back. It didn't disappoint. I loved seeing Linda Hamilton back on the big screen and looking her age. I can't remember when I last saw her in anything. Arnie's back - obviously.

Another one with ticks in a lot of boxes. I liked the two young female leads, both of whom were unknown to me prior to this - Mackenzie Davis and Natalia Reyes. I liked Mr Terminator - Gabriel Luna - as well, not that he got to display his full emotional range here

I had hope to catch up with some of if not all of the earlier films in the series, but apparently I don't have copies. Maybe I did on video and that format has long bitten the dust. Never mind.

From Google....

In Mexico City, a newly modified liquid Terminator -- the Rev-9 model -- arrives from the future to kill a young factory worker named Dani Ramos. Also sent back in time is Grace, a hybrid cyborg human who must protect Ramos from the seemingly indestructible robotic assassin. But the two women soon find some much-needed help from a pair of unexpected allies -- seasoned warrior Sarah Connor and the T-800 Terminator.
Release date: 25 October 2019 (United Kingdom)
Director: Tim Miller
Based on: Characters; by James Cameron; Gale Anne Hurd
Budget: $160–200 million
Production companies: Paramount Pictures, Skydance Media, 20th Century Fox, Tencent Pictures, Lightstorm Entertainment

October League Table
1. Joker
2. Terminator Dark Fate
3. The Goldfinch
4. Abominable
5. The Day Shall Pass
6. Hustlers
7. A Shaun the Sheep Movie: Farmageddon

Another plus point in the month - we dodged the new Will Smith film. Saw the trailers and thought it looked like dog-shit - The Gemini Man if you're interested.


  1. Glad to hear you had a few good experiences, Col. I keep hearing that The Joker is fantastic. Good to know it really is And I know exactly what you mean about films that you see with your grandchildren - and not before. Overall, sounds like not a bad month.

    1. Margot, I really would recommend Joker to anyone. I do hope you enjoy it when you get there!

  2. Haven’t seen most of these, Col.
    Tartt’s door-stop of a book put me off, too. But since you enjoyed the movie, it goes on the list to watch at home. I might check out Meyer’s novella.
    JOKER has some interesting moments, but I thought it needed a good editor.

    1. Meyer's book would be quicker to read, that's for sure. The film might be the way to go.

      I couldn't really find fault with Joker.

  3. I haven't seen any of these but then we don't go to the theater to see movies. Will probably watch Joker and Terminator Dark Fate later when available.

    1. I don't think we would go as often as we do without the pass system. We went twice over the weekend and are going again a few evenings this week.

      I hope you like both films when you eventually watch them.