What general film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Film Reviews and Release Comparisons
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Markgway
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Re: What general film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by Markgway » 28 Nov 2018, 05:12

Peppermint (2018) **
Disappointing vigilante thriller casts Jennifer Garner as one-woman army taking out a Colombian drug cartel.
Never boring, but low on credibility, even for this sort of movie.
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Re: What general film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by Markgway » 30 Nov 2018, 00:07

Kaleidoscope (2016) **
Drab psychological drama in which mother-hating ex-con Toby Jones murders a tart.
Jones is good, but the film's really a giant tease that doesn't add up to terribly much.
Writer-director Rupert Jones (brother of Toby) is no Alfred Hitchcock.
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Re: What general film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by Markgway » 30 Nov 2018, 05:54

Death Wish (2018) **
Not bad (but not exactly good) remake of the Charles Bronson vehicle is different enough to stand on its own feet, whilst horror hack Eli Roth handles the violence capably (with only a couple of moments of his trademark strong gore/torture). The real problem here is, surprisingly, Bruce Willis, whose acting is below the standard we know he's capable of. Whilst Bronson was low key, but believable, Willis is just wooden, and palpably disinterested. I couldn't help thinking how much better this would have been had the originally cast Liam Neeson been retained.
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Re: What general film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by Markgway » 01 Dec 2018, 04:53

Unsane (2018) **½
A woman is tricked into committing herself to a psychiatric facility where her stalker awaits.
Steven Soderbergh's experimental thriller shot entirely on an iPhone is more interesting than satisfying,
though Claire Foy is fine in the lead role.
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Re: What general film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by Markgway » 02 Dec 2018, 00:43

The Lost World: Jurassic Park (1997) ***
Suspenseful, smartly written follow-up.
The best of the series, despite a final act that should've been saved for JP3.
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Re: What general film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by HungFist » 02 Dec 2018, 11:42

The Outsider (USA, 2018) [Netflix] - 3.5/5
A highly entertaing twist to the usual yakuza film formula with Jared Leto as gaijin yakuza in 1950s Osaka and Kobe. The unusual protagonist adds a constant tension to a film that, with its depictions of Japanese yakuza, police and prison guards as corrupt animals... is otherwise just like any standard Japanese yakuza film! Indeed, there's is just a little bit too much familiarity to the ingredients as well as some tourist touring with one sumo, sauna or tattoo scene too much. The casting however is excellent (Kippei Shiina, Min Tanaka, Shun Sugata, Tadanobu Asano, Shioli Kutsuna) and the 50s milieu is nicely brought to life with good production values.

Obviously not without flaws, but to me some of the film’s poor reception strikes as a mix of modern sensitivity (oh no, don’t steal the poor Japanese their culture and trick their clueless actors into your film) and lack of knowledge of Japanese genre cinema. Of course you can criticize the film for clichés or being a movie for people who have never seen Fukasaku, Kitano or Miike films, but then, those are the genre’s most unique filmmakers. The criticism is valid if you take this approach, yes, but you’d have to disown 95% of Japanese genre cinema, including a lot of movies by genre favorites like Sadao Nakajima, on the same basis and I don’t see that happening.

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Re: What general film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by Markgway » 03 Dec 2018, 03:06

The Hunt (2012) ***
Upsetting Scandinavian drama about a playgroup supervisor falsely accused of child molestation and how his friends (sometimes brutally) turn against him. I would've done the ending differently but it gets the point across.
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Re: What general film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by Markgway » 05 Dec 2018, 05:01

Brubaker (1980) ***
Good drama in which liberal warden Robert Redford is determined to reform a hellhole prison.

Kill Me Three Times (2014) **½
Aussie crime caper told in three time-shift chapters.
Has plenty of Tarantino's darkly violent humour, but little of his wit.
Cast (including Simon Pegg as a wry hitman) is fun to watch.
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Re: What general film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by HungFist » 07 Dec 2018, 15:47

Wheelman (USA, 2018) [Netflix] - 3.5/5
A getaway driver receives a threatening call while on a gig. Tightly paced at just 82 minutes and claustrophobically filmed almost entirely from inside the car, this is less an action film and more of a tense, well written thriller with a good leading performance by Frank Grillo.

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Re: What general film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by Markgway » 09 Dec 2018, 13:06

Buck Privates (1941) **
Innocuous first starring vehicle for A&C has minimal plot, more musical numbers than laughs.
Vaudeville routines are largely dated.

Abbott and Costello... Meet the Invisible Man (1951) **
Maybe I'm getting grouchy in my old age, but I found this more silly than enjoyable.
I loved A&C when I was a kid, perhaps where these memories belong?
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Re: What general film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by Markgway » 10 Dec 2018, 18:01

Abbott and Costello... Meet the Killer (1949) **½
This was a bit more up my alley.
A murder mystery-farce with a nice atmosphere and supporting role for Boris Karloff.
Costello is still LOUD and his shtick can be wearying.
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Re: What general film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by Markgway » 11 Dec 2018, 09:52

Green for Danger (1946) ***½
Classic British murder mystery with Alistair Sim's delightfully wry Scotland Yard inspector.
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Re: What general film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

Unread post by Markgway » Yesterday, 22:41

Predator 2 (1990) **½
Frantic sequel, not as good as the original, but better than what came after.
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