Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Remote Control (1988)

I was lucky enough to pick this tape up earlier today for 30p from a local charity store. It wasn't until a few hours later that I looked the plot up on imdb and that was that, I was sold.
Kevin Dillon works in an 80's video store and must destroy all of the tapes of a movie called Remote Control to save the earth. Fantastic!

I love how the movie is set in the store, there were so many great 80's titles that I know, love, have and remember from back then. The plot is typical of that period, when films like Terror Vision and Night of the Comet were coming out, this just seems like a perfect blend of the two. With Grampa (aka Bert Remsen) from Terror Vision even making a brief appearance in this one.
I was a little bit annoyed when they killed off Jennifer Tilly within the first 20 minutes or so, obviously this is from a selfish view but still, it's Jennifer fucking Tilly, man!

I loved Kevin Dillon in this, almost as much as I love him in The Blob. The rest of the cast are great too, in a cheesy 80's kind of way of course.

Am amazing find and i'll thank the tapegods every day for coming across this one on the floor in my local charity store. Seek it out!

Midnight Madness (1980)

Wow! What a gem of a movie. A few weeks back I put out a request for some 80's movies that people remembered from their youth, this one was recommended to me by @bobfreelander on Twitter and I must thank him for it.

The plot is brilliant and textbook Disney. Think It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World meets The Cannonball Run but with college kids!
I loved every team, even the Blue one. Michael J. Fox makes an appearance too as the brother of David Naughton's character, and Paul Reubens even steps in with a few lines too.
I loved the sheer insanity of it. Seek it out if you haven't already seen it.

Confessions (2010)

I'd been desperate to see this film since I heard about it towards the end of last year, unfortunately the UK cinema release in Februaury was very limited to select cinemas, none of which were in reaching distance of myself as I work until late most days. So I had to wait until the DVD and Blu release, and even then i've delayed it a little.

The story is very simple but effective, gripping you from the get go and refusing to give in. It does the wonderful thing of explaining the secrets and mysteries from the start, to lure you into the false sense of security that you already know what's going on and what exactly is there left to tell, all after the first 15-2- minutes. Then it takes you on a series of twists and turns and you just give in and accept that you have no idea where it's going. The actors were really great too and very believable, but then again I never have noticed bad acting in Asian films.
I loved the score/soundtrack for this movie, it really seemed to capture each scene and bring the film to life. As did the editing and visual effects too, quite brilliant in places.

Overall it's a pretty solid revenge flick but nothing masterful like I was expecting. Roll on Dream Home and I Saw the Devil next on my hit list.

Monday, 25 April 2011

Scre4m (2011)

I went into the film with the lowest of expectations. It boasts a very credible score on imdb (currently the highest of the franchise at present) but everyone I respect has panned it. Whether it was the low expectations or not, I had a really fun time with this movie.

A few months back I saw Craven's latest effort My Soul to Take and thought it was one of the worst movies i'd ever seen, so you can imagine how awkward I felt parting with good money to see a new addition to the Scream franchise.
This is nothing like MStT, thankfully this is both funny and smart. It constantly takes the piss out of it's cliched plot points throughout and really works because of that fact. My only negative thoughts are with the ending but i'm not about to spoil anything about it.

Had it not have been for that dreaded third instalment which was absolutely dire, this could have been a wonderful and fun trilogy, but I fear it may always be tarnished by that ugly sister of a third film.

Don't be put off by any negative reviews, if you enjoyed parts 1 and 2 then you're in for a real treat.

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Life As We Know it (2010)

Could it be humanly possible that i'm losing my love for the rom-coms? I didn't really care much for Made of Honor the other night and this was the same. I was quite looking forward to this film, it stars the gorgeous Katherine Heigel and the lead from the surprise hit Paradise Lost (I'm aware he's been in other things but I haven't seen them).

I guess the long winded run time didn't help my feelings towards it, 2 hours? Come on.
The subject matter isn't new to me, I love Jack and Sarah and Knocked Up and this seemed to be like a perfect blend of the two. This is nowhere near as good as either of those films.

Maybe I am losing my love or maybe these films are losing their touch. The Switch and Barry Munday were another two disappointments.
Don't necessarily avoid it but don't move heaven and hell to see it either.

Friday, 22 April 2011

The Rocketeer (1991)

Wow! I completely missed this film upon release, mind you I was only 6 years old.
I never wanted to catch up with it on DVD or Blu (if there was one) so I decided to wait until I found the VHS tape. Luckily last week I stumbled upon a copy from one of my hauls. It had to be screened right away. It was one I always used to see sitting on the shel in my local video store.

Just like in Hot Fuzz Timothy Dalton has a monstrous sidekick built like a russian shotputter and with a face only a Mother could love, both are excellent characters. Jennifer Connelly is stunning as per usual and the leade actor Bill Campbell is wonderfully likeable, as is the ever likeable Alan Arkin.
I love films set in the 1930's, it always looks like such a beautiful place and Joe Johnston capures it perfectly. It almost feels like an Indiana Jones movie.

Watch this one immediately if you haven't done so already, it's amazing! Loved it!

Made of Honor (2008)

I'm a huge sucker for a good old rom-com and when this came on channel 5, I couldn't help but give it a try. At first it was some nice background noise but then I kept getting more and more involved, especially as Patrick Dempsey was in it.

My major concern with this film is the fact that every woman fancies the Dempsey. Now don't get me wrong, he is a very good looking man (I can appreciate that), but every single woman he passes? Come on!

There are other problems with it too, like the done-to-death plot. Overall it's not a bad effort but it's nowhere near as good as The Break-Up, The Family Stone etc. See, I have a very gay eye when it comes to chick-flicks and rom-coms. I love em!

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Little Fockers (2010)

Another film that I just was not looking forward to in the slightest due to the bad reviews upon release. Maybe it was the after effects of having just screened an absolute turd, but I really enjoyed this one.
I was a huge admirer of Meet the Parents, and didn't really hate the sequel too much either but this one really gets back to the fun of the first.
The plot was pretty much non-existent, but then again it's tough to keep trying to think up new ways of adding another Focker film to the franchise. I thought it was very funny in parts and I had a smile on my face throughout.
I definitely recommend this to anyone who liked the original but like I said, I did just a screen a massive turd beforehand, so don't go expecting miracles.

Splash (1984)

A classic film from my youth but not one that I remember a whole lot about, other than the fact that Daryl Hannah was a mermaid in it. It's been about 15 years or maybe even more since I last saw this one so it was well overdue for a revisit.

I'll watch any movie with Tom Hanks or John Candy in and that goes double for any released in the 80's. Add to the mix an absolutely stunning Daryl Hannah and Candy's SNL right hand man Eugene Levy and you've got yourself some sure-fire gold there. Directed by Ron Howard too? I'm in dreamland.
I'm happy to report that I still love this movie, in a similar way that I love Mannequin. It's that fantasy romance that draws me in, almost dream state, like the movies we all want to make in our heads.

Hanks is hilarious and to pick one scene in general would be very harsh but in the case of the spoon at the restaurant, I can't help it. "Nice earrings."

It's a childhood classic and one that still holds strong enough today.

Sunday, 10 April 2011

Scott Pilgrim Vs. the World (2010)

My favourite movie from all of last years releases. A truly magical film!

The film is littered with other movie references, manistream and obscure. Some are finding Cera a little too much of late but I happen to enjoy most of his films and early TV work.
I can remember walking out of the cinema and talking about this film all the way home, I can't remember the last time a film gave me such a huge buzz and grin. I love the fact that a movie like this was crafted by and English director.

An epic of epic epicness indeed.

Saturday, 9 April 2011

Twelve Angry Men (1957)

Sadly, cinema lost one of it's brightest lights this morning with the news that Sidney Lumet had passed away. As soon as I heard the news I knew there was only one film to screen tonight.

My Dad first showed this one to me as a 12 year old with very basic knowledge of film, but my eyes had a rude awakening as soon as the film opened up.
For me this is Lumet's masterpiece. The script is fast and timed to perfection, the acting is second to none and the execution is simply breath-taking. Over 50 years since it was first released and it's still recognised today as one of the greatest movies ever made. You can't help but get sucked into the story and you almost feel like the twelth man on the jury,

It's a work of magic, simple as that. Check it out!

High Fidelity (2000)

A personal favourite and major point of reference for me. So imagine my horror when my Wife dropped the bombshell that she hadn't seen it. Before she even finished the sentence I was already out of my chair heading for the movie room, I picked up the tape and she experienced the magic.

I have always loved this movie, and as a fellow collector I can really relate to the John Cusack's character. His love for all things vinyl is exactly the same as mine for VHS. The way he organises his shelves to the way he's always ranking them in order of top 5, it's just like my collection.
In my opinion this is one of Jack Black's best performances. Although not a major part in the film he is still integral to the key funny scenes and superb finale, which probably launched his career. The cameos are fantastic in this too, from Tim Robbins to Joan Cusack to Catherine Zeta Jones etc.
I'm a huge Cusack fan, most notably his 80's work but this one is a cracker that I like to revisit a lot.

This is just one of those great break-up movies that can proudly stand among the likes of Almost Famous, Swingers and so on. I don't need to say much more as you're all probably aware of it's greatness, unlike my Wife. But that has now been corrected.

Monday, 4 April 2011

The Social Network (2010)

Behing Scott Pilgrim from last year, The Social Network was my other favourite movie of 2010. I saw it a week earlier than most as it was part of a Mystery Movie Monday screening but I can still remember how buzzed I was when I walked out of the cinema.

This was my first revisit of many but it still left the same impression on me, David Fincher is a genius and this film can go down alongside Zodiac as a modern day masterpiece. This may one day rise to my all time top 10 list but for now it will just have to be happy receiving a 5 star rating.
I doubt there is a movie fan left on earth who hasn't seen this movie at least once, but if you're one of those people, amend that great mistake now. This film will blow you away in both performances and script.
Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield and even Justin Timberlake are fantastic in the central performances and the score is amazing too. Loved it!

Sunday, 3 April 2011

Babes in Toyland (1986)

My Mom used to work for Sony BMG when I was little and she would always bring back VHS tapes from the label RCA. Over the years we'd constantly watch the same films over and over like The Monster Squad, Ghostbusters and alike but there was always one film that I could never remember the name of. The only thing I knew about it was that it featured a shop on the corner of a street and it was really snowing. I knew deep down that with only tose two fragments of a memory i'd never be able to track the movie down, litte did I know that my Sister would be the one to locate it. After years and years of racking my brain I asked her and she said Babes in Toyland. Quite bizarre considering she's the worst person in the world when it comes to movies.

I couldn't wait to screen this one as part of my Sunday screenings, hoping that it would bring back some memories and put me in a good mood. Sadly this only goes to further strengthen the fact that some films are better left in the past, remembering them for how they made you feel back then.
Drew Barrymore and Keanu Reeves do their very best here but the acting overall is atrocious, as is the story really. The songs are cringeworthy already without the lips sync added. Imagine an 11 year old Drew singing like a 40 year old woman? It's not great on the old ears, let me tell you.

It's a shame that this film is terrible because the opening 10-15 minutes show a great deal of promise. I can't believe that imdb show a run time of 90 minutes, because the version I had was on for almost two and a half hours! And man did it drag.

Friday, 1 April 2011

Sideways (2004)

Not as rewatchable as something like Swingers but certainly one of my all-time favourites. Paul Giamatti excels as the down and out manic depressive while Haden Church completely steals the show with this carefree ways and wily charms.
It's almost a year to the day that I visited theSanta Barbara wineries and this film brings back so many memories. I even ate in the same restaurant and drank in the same wine testing huts as the pair.
This is expertly written and wonderfully acted throughout that I find it almost impossible to believe that anyone could dislike it, it's like poetry in motion. Seek it out if you happen to be among the very select few that have missed it. Wonderful film!

I've seen this film quite a few times now and it's funny because like a fine wine, this film really does get better with age.