Sunday 23 May 2021


 A mixed bag of viewing, more enjoyed than not, truth be told. 

                               Bull - Season 1 and Season 2 (2016/17) - TV Drama series

I watched some of the first series of this a few years back and enjoyed them. I pretty much forgot about them, but my TV box didn't and started recording some episodes which had obviously aired on some obscure channel.

We watched maybe four or five of these, some of which I could dimly remember from before. No problem though, as I do like the cast and in particular the main lead actor, Michael Weatherly. I've enjoyed seeing him in NCIS for years.

It's a bit far-fetched, but who knows maybe there are people doing exactly what Bull and his team do here?

From Wikipedia ....

The series follows the employees at Trial Analysis Corporation (TAC), a jury consulting firm headed by Dr. Jason Bull, who is a psychologist and trial-science expert. Bull uses his skills and those of his team not only to select the right jurors for his clients, but also to help his clients' lawyers decide which type of argument will win over jurors best. Bull is inspired by the early career of Dr. Phil McGraw, who also serves as an executive producer.

                                              Outlaw (2007) - DVD Film

A revenge/vigilante thriller featuring Sean Bean, Danny Dyer and Bob Hoskins. Best film ever? No, but it was enjoyed and there wasn't anything else I wanted to be doing when watching it.

From Google ....

Veteran Sgt. Daniel Bryant finds himself trapped in a world of urban violence. He feels that the law enforcement agencies have cheated him. He forms a vigilante task force to establish public order.

And When Did You Last See Your Father (2007) - TV Film)

I was reminded a bit of Big Fish here, with the depiction of a difficult father, son relationship. One which doesn't get resolved really while both are alive. Jim Broadbent is excellent as the sometimes feckless father, as is Colin Firth as the resentful son. 

From Wikipedia ....

And When Did You Last See Your Father? is a 2007 British drama film directed by Anand Tucker. The screenplay by David Nicholls is based on the 1993 memoir of the same title by Blake Morrison.

While Blake Morrison, his mother, and younger sister Gillian tend to his father, Arthur, on his deathbed in his Yorkshire home, Blake has a series of flashbacks of moments he shared with his father. Despite Blake's success as a writer, poet, and critic, his father – a rural general practitioner – never accepted his decision to pursue a literary career or acknowledged his achievements.

Bullying, blustery, and boorish, Arthur blunders his way through fatherhood, regularly calling his son a fathead and intruding into the boy's private moments with a sense of entitlement. He has a penchant for exaggeration when he is not telling outright lies, and publicly humiliates his long-suffering wife Kim with his shameless flirting with various women and an affair with Beaty, a friend of the family.

At other times, he seems genuinely interested in bonding with his son, taking him camping so they can test supposedly waterproof sleeping bags he has made or allowing him to practise driving in the family's Alvis convertible on a wide expanse of deserted beach with reckless abandon. As a result, Blake is left with mixed feelings for his father, ranging from deeply rooted anger to compassionate acceptance. Only after Arthur's death is he able to set aside his resentment and recognise him as someone whose flaws ultimately helped mould his son into the better man he is.

                                              Unforgotten Series 4 (2021) - ITV Drama

My new favourite series. Where the hell was I when the first three series aired?
Series four finished with a bang. Off to track down the other three! Started in March, finished in April.

From IMDB ....

Episode #4.1
When a headless and hand-less body is found in a North London scrapyard, the team led by Sunny are called to investigate.
Episode #4.2

Cassie and Sunny continue to investigate Fogerty's driving offence.
Episode #4.3
Cassie and Sunny interview each of the four suspects, who deny knowing the victim. Boulting discovers Walsh was cautioned three weeks before his death, while Collier locates the rest of Walsh's body.
Episode #4.4
Cassie and Sunny discover Walsh was chased by all four suspects on the night in question. Willets realizes Fiona's blood sample may have been deliberately lost by Liz. The pathologist identifies Walsh was murdered.
Episode #4.5
Cassie and Sunny interview two of the suspects again and get closer to the truth of what happened to Walsh. Balcombe believes she may have found the cause of death.
Episode #4.6
Despite a shocking event, the Bishop Street team start to piece together which of the four was responsible for the murder of Matthew Walsh but it is pathologist Leanne Balcombe who provides the crucial piece of evidence.

                                                    The Nun (2018) - Netflix Film

A bit of Netflix horror and not one I would have picked. That said I quite enjoyed it. Maybe because it had a credible plot and I wasn't too scared or disturbed by it.

From Wikipedia ....

In 1952 Romania, two nuns living at the Saint Cartha's monastery are attacked by an unseen evil force after entering a tunnel to retrieve an ancient Christian relic. The surviving nun, Sister Victoria, flees from the attacker, a demon appearing as a nun, and hangs herself. Her body is discovered by Frenchie, a villager who transports supplies to the nuns.

The Vatican learns of the incident and summons Father Burke to Rome, where they ask him to travel with Sister Irene, a nun in her novitiate, to Romania in order to investigate the situation. While Sister Irene is teaching children the relationship between religion and science in a school, her Mother Superior interrupts her and informs her that Burke has arrived in order to request Irene's accompaniment in his trip to Romania.

The pair travels to Romania and meets with Frenchie, who leads them to the abbey. They discover Victoria's body and take a key from her corpse. Inside, they encounter the Abbess, who informs them that the nuns observe a period of silence during the night and offers them lodging at the attached convent if they wish to return tomorrow. Frenchie is attacked by a demon as he returns to the village, but escapes. Burke tells Irene that a boy he exorcised in the past, Daniel, was fatally injured during the ritual, and Burke has carried the burden of the boy's death with him ever since. Irene reveals that as a girl, she had visions and each of them concluded with "Mary points the way", causing the Church to take an interest in her. That night, Burke is rescued by Irene after being buried alive in the graveyard by the demonic entity.

The next day, Irene and Burke return to the abbey, but only Irene can enter as it is cloistered. She meets some of the other nuns and learns that they are praying constantly, swapping in shifts, to keep the evil entity at bay. Sister Oana reveals the abbey's history: it was built in the Middle Ages as a castle by a duke obsessed with the occult. The duke summoned the demon through a rift in the catacombs but was killed by Christian knights, who sealed the rift with a vial filled with the Blood of Christ. However, the bombings during World War II accidentally reopened the rift, unleashing the evil entity once more. Burke identifies the demon as Valak and discovers the Abbess has been dead all along.

Frenchie heads back to the abbey to help Irene and Burke. Irene is attacked by Valak and joins the nuns in desperate prayer to ward off the demon. When the group reunites, Irene discovers that none of the nuns she had seen and talked to were real and she had been praying alone, later realizing that Victoria had been the last nun in the abbey and had sacrificed herself to stop Valak from possessing her body and unleashing evil.

Theorizing that Valak can only be stopped if they seal the rift with the blood of Christ contained in the reliquary, the trio retrieves the vial with the key Victoria possessed. Irene then informs Burke that God has called her to make her solemn vows as a nun and asks Burke to elevate her to the status of a professed nun, which he does in the abbey's chapel.

After the trio unlocks the tunnel door, Irene is lured into a pentagram and possessed by Valak. Frenchie smears some of the blood of Christ on her face, casting out the demon. Burke is wounded by Daniel's ghost as Valak starts to drown Irene in a flooded chamber. Irene expels the blood of Christ in the demon's face, banishing it as the blood of Christ seals the rift. After Frenchie resuscitates Irene, he reveals his real name is Maurice. Unbeknownst to the others, Maurice has been possessed by Valak, as evidenced by an inverted cross on his neck.

Twenty years later at a university seminar, in Wakefield, Massachusetts, Carolyn Perron watches as Ed and Lorraine Warren present footage of their attempt to exorcise a possessed Maurice. In the footage, Maurice grabs Lorraine, giving her visions of Ed dying, which initiates the Warrens' investigation of the Perron farmhouse haunting.

                            The Righteous Gemstones (2019) - TV Comedy/Drama Series

Biff, bang, bosh - what a cracking show. Funny AF. From afar I've always thought US TV evangelists to be a right bunch of dodgy fuckers. This hilarious send-up doesn't do much to dissuade me of that notion. A couple of episodes watched, a few more to enjoy during May.

Favourite character - Jesse Gemstone and his impressive mutton chop sideburns. John Goodman and Walton Goggins feature. I loved Goggins in Justified. The rest of the cast are very good, but unknown to me.

From Google ....

Well into the second generation of a grand televangelist tradition, the world-famous Gemstone family is living proof that worship pays dividends in all sizes. Patriarch Eli, the man most responsible for the tremendous success of the family's megachurch, is in mourning over the loss of his wife. Jesse, the eldest of the three grown Gemstone siblings, looks to lead in his father's footsteps, but finds his past sins jeopardizing the family ministry. Next in line comes middle sister Judy, who secretly lives with her fiancé and dreams of escaping the Gemstone compound. Rounding out the dysfunctional trio is pseudo-hipster Kelvin, the youngest of the preachers and a thorn in Jesse's side. As the family battles numerous threats to their renowned religious empire, they continue to spread the good word... and make a solid buck doing so.

                                                   The Ice Harvest (2005) - DVD Film

A film I've been wanting to see for a few years now, ever since I read the book by Scott Phillips
It didn't disappoint. I always enjoy seeing Billy Bob Thornton on screen.

From Google ....

A shady lawyer attempts a Christmas Eve crime, hoping to swindle the local mob out of some money. But his partner, a strip club owner, might have different plans for the cash.

                                           Briarpatch (2019) - TV Drama Series

A few more episodes watched and the less said the better. Suffice to say it hasn't really improved in my estimation.

From Wikipedia ...

Briarpatch is an American television series starring Rosario Dawson based on the 1984 Ross Thomas novel of the same name. The series was picked up in late January 2019 by USA Network, after being ordered to pilot in April 2018.

In advance of its broadcast premiere, several episodes of the series received a preview screening in the Primetime program of the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival.

The series premiered on February 6, 2020. On July 17, 2020, the series was canceled after one season.


When Detective Felicity Dill is killed in a car bombing, her sister Allegra Dill, an investigator working for a senator, returns home to San Bonifacio to find her killer. In the process of her investigation, she uncovers a web of corruption in the small Texas town.

                                                 Papillon (2017) - TV Film

Loved the original book by Henri Charrière. I still have a copy. Loved the original film featuring Steve McQueen and Dustin Hoffman. Enjoyed this fairly recent remake. I do like a prison story, especially if it's based on real life events.

From Google ....

The epic story of Henri "Papillon" Charrière, a safecracker from the Parisian underworld who is framed for murder and condemned to life in the notorious penal colony on Devil's Island. Determined to regain his freedom, Papillon forms an unlikely alliance with convicted counterfeiter Louis Dega, who in exchange for protection, agrees to finance Papillon's escape.

                                                The Boy (2015) - Netflix Film

Another Netflix punt and an enjoyable dark, dark film about a nine year old boy who just isn't right. Jeez, if you'd hate to cross paths with him at this age, you'd do well to avoid him in adulthood. 

I enjoyed David Morse's performance as the boy's father. I liked him in The Green Mile.

Dark and disturbing. One I won't forget too quickly.

From Wikipedia ....

The Boy is a 2015 American horror film directed by Craig Macneill, written by Macneill and Clay McLeod Chapman, and starring Jared Breeze, David Morse, and Rainn Wilson. It was based on a short film by Macneill and Chapman, Henley, which was in turn loosely inspired by a novel written by Chapman, Miss Corpus. Breeze plays the titular boy, a budding serial killer.


  1. I liked the original Papillon (the film), too, Col. Remakes often don't live up to the original, so I'm glad that this one did. I've heard good things about Unforgotten, too, although I've yet to watch it. I should try to find that and see what I think. At any rate, I'm glad you had some good viewing.

    1. Margot, if you do try the Papillon remake I hope you like it. Ditto Unforgotten. It's well worth a look if you can cross paths with it.

  2. We like Bull. It is one of two TV shows we watch as it airs. (The other is NCIS.) I really like Michael Weatherly and I think they have a good cast that works well together.

    Loved The Ice Harvest. I like Billy Bob too, but John Cusack is a favorite. I can't remember whether it is the book or the film that has the most depressing ending. Probably the book. Both are very good.

    1. Agreed on Bull and I do like NCIS as well.

      I must try and dig out the book of The Ice Harvest. I'm pretty sure I've kept it. Not a massive John Cusack fan myself. I remember him from Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. That was a slog to get through.