Wednesday, 23 June 2010

44, The Killers

From the second I saw Tom Sellecks trademark moustache arrive on the trailer (and later discovering that there is a "3 Men and a Bride" film on the way!)a few months ago I wanted to see this movie.

It had this funny swagger about it that said action meets comedy and like the up coming Cruise / Diaz Movie "Knight & Day" (one of his 13 movies currently in production - including a MI.4!!)looked like a great rom-com meets action adventure with Spy meeting innocent girl, fall in love etc.

And I was right. From the outset this is a funny film and you are drawn to the leading roles of Kutcher and Heigl as the unlikely pairing who meet in France, fall in love, get married only for her to realise that he is an ex-spy with a £20mil contract on his head - but by who?? out rolls the plot, the brilliant story, a great twist and some fight / action scenes that would not look out of place in a new Bond Movie.

But the real attraction is not our doughy eyed love birds but the Mum & Dad pairing of Selleck & O'Hara (who for those of you that don't recognise the names, He was Magnum P.I and she was the Mum in Home Alone). They are brilliant. The mum especially is hilarious as you will see, not so much by her lines but expressions and actions throughout. He is the smooth talking sophisticated pilot turned wealthy globe trotter with an aire of greatness but one not to be messed with. They fir the roles beautifully and for me, the definite draw to the film.

Although you cant take anything away from the leading actors. Kutcher has become quite a headliner since his obnoxious Punk'd days and recent good roles in Valentines Day, What happened in Vegas & The Guardian have placed him mid way up the A-list with Demi Moore doing her bit to kick him a little higher, and as a producer on this film is achieving behind the camera recognition as well. Heigl is adorable. As she was in Knocked Up & 27 Dresses, even though she flagged a bit in The Ugly Truth she plays a blinder in this. Very funny.

So - I am not going to spoil it. I've seen it twice and laughed more the second time - even though I knew the plot in advance I still enjoyed it. A definite repeater worthy of a blu-ray purchase.

See this if.................You like a laugh with your guns and action!!

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

43, Street Dance (3d)

Who here loves "Britain's got Talent"???

Okay, me too - and the highlight is always the team dance troops (The good ones anyway!) so when my daughters started Street Dancing off the back of TV telling them they had to because that's what everyone did, my world was opened up to George Sampson, Diversity and Flawless as well as a string of American movie offerings like Step Up etc.

So when this hit the screens in 3D is was a given that I would have to attend.


Okay, I am no street dancer, a few drunken dad moves at a party but these guys smashed it up. The music, moves and atmosphere that this film generated was excellent. It starts out like an expensive version of "Britannia High" and the acting looks like it belongs in an episode of Dr Who (It's by the BBC so give it a chance) but quickly you forget all this and the almost 100% UK cast and their abilities, looks, dress and tunes shine through and both me and my wife were as much into it as the girls.

The group you know, Diversity only appear for a few minutes although George Sampson (Eddie) and Flawless (Surge!) are in it from the start and I was impressed by the appearance of Frank Harper (Football Factory & Lock Stock) as the cafe owner, he was a surprise. A few more familiar TV faces pop up including a guy from "Holby City" and another from "The Office" and it ended up playing out to be quite well acted.

There is also a good story that brings Ballet and Street together but I'll let you go and see it to work it out.

The soundtrack is excellent (if you have kids that love that sort of thing.....secretly me too!) and the dancing is fab!

I loved this film - and the 3d was excellent, very subtle and atmospheric throughout but kicked in when it really counted with a few hats flying out at you and kicks / jumps looking really good. I found myself bouncing along all the way through.

I don't have a bad word to say, the girls are hot, the boys are fit (say wife and daughter) and even George Sampson plays a blinder as Eddie.

Love this (again! will stop gushing now) - Its been out a while so be quick but see it in 3d as a must - go this weekend. Take everyone.

See this if.................. B.G.T hits your TV's EVERY WEEK!

42, Brooklyn's Finest

Wesley Snipes, Richard Gere, Don Cheadle & Ethan Hawke. All fine actors, each starring in amazing movies. An A-list to be proud of?

Its a shame they all put their name to the worst film I have seen since "Ponyo" (A movie so bad it did not even make the Blog!)

Now don't get me wrong, I love a good action movie. Dirty Violence, Swearing, Gun fights and bloody action but this was just truly awful.

Narcotics, Undercover & Uniformed Cops, all from the same precinct go about their days oblivious to each others existence dealing with money troubles, undercover loyalties, alcohol / women trouble, drugs, all the usual suspects and the premise is great but it just does not deliver. Over two hours of plodding along with no real pace, a few gun fights and more "F" words between Cheadle and Snipes than is really necessary made for a dull, slow, long turkey that will not be on my DVD Xmas list.

The last 10 minutes gets a bit better when all 3 of our burnt out cops end up in the same place and it all comes together. But even that's disappointing.

I really don't have anything else to say. Avoid this film. sorry.

See this if...............Pulling teeth is fun for you.

41, Letters to Juliet

So, in Mamma Mia! a new icon for romantic love stories made a huge splash onto the cinema screens and Amanda Seyfried was born to the masses. But, she had been around for a while before that. A brief appearance as a full on hottie in Alpha Dog along with some CSi, House Md & Law and Order TV episodes with her movie debut in Mean Girls has paved the pay for Hollywoods nicest and newest sweetheart.

She does not have the WoW! factor of Megan Fox but as the "girl next door" its obvious that Hollywood has taken this cutie under their wing and are rolling her out in one romantic flick after another with an appearance as Little Red Riding Hood in 2011 (and its not an animation!)

So I stepped into this film expecting a soppy love story. Blah blah blah.......yawn but to be brutally and openly honest.....It was a great film.

It follows a couple taking a pre-wedding Honeymoon to Verona, Italy as due to the Mr's Restaurant opening straight after the wedding there would be no time! It quickly becomes apparent that he is only there for the suppliers and food / wine tasting leaving our sweetheart alone, bored and with nothing to do in the city of love.

On an solo outing she stumbles upon Juliet's balcony and hundreds of letters left on the wall by girls who need Juliet's love advice.

Having never been to Verona I don't know if this is true but it could easily be.

So, she sees a woman taking down the letters, follows her home and discovers "Juliet's Secretaries". A gaggle of old Italian ladies who respond to every letter Juliet receives, spreading love and hope to the many heartbroken souls who descend upon this romantic city.

As an aspiring writer she joins them an upon discovery of a 50 year old letter hidden in the cracks decides to reply, launching the recipient into a mad dash across the ocean with snooty grandson in tow to seek out the love of her life, albeit 50 years prior. Now we have a slightly odd road trip movie with our heroine tagging along where, you guessed's more than the old lady (Redgrave) who discovers true love.

So, Is it soppy?...Definitely, but its beautifully acted, the setting are adorable and the English rogue's charm who who at the start, you believe is the worst actor in the world quickly changes your mind and you keep shouting !!!KISS HER!!!

This is not my normal choice of film but take a chance, take the Mrs and kiss her during the title will see why! If she is half as romantic as my wife she will see that softer side of you shine though. Shoot and Score!

Be a Man. See a good chick flick and enjoy it.

See this if..................There's a Romeo inside you, gagging to get out!

Sunday, 6 June 2010

40, Robin Hood

Without a "Bryan Adams" in sight I was glad that another crack had been taken at telling the story of Robin Hood. Why? Well because if you think about it, potentially it all the adventure of "Pirates" mixed with the scale of "Gladiator" and if, like me you love your epics this is one not to be missed.

When Disney's Robin Hood came out with a Fox, Bear and Lion taking the lead roles it was simple, as with the Kevin Costner version, Robin of Locksley robbed from the rich and gave to the poor, governed by the evil King John awaiting the return of Good King Richard the Lion Heart from the crusades, John (aided by the Evil Sheriff of Nottingham) raided the simple village folk of all their taxes allowing Robin to run around with his band of Merry men looting the rich folk and giving it back to the poor?............sounds correct? of course it is, everyone knows the story of Robin Hood.

However, not this time. Robin Hood is NOT Robin of Locksley, he is Robin Longstride - a totally different family, who assumes the identity of Robin of Locksley when the real one dies and our hero decides to return his sword to the dead Robins father. On arrival at the Locksley farm / village he meets Marion (Robins wife) and after a lengthy chat with her father in-law assumes the role of Robin of Locksley and takes up his place as the rightful heir and husband???? - There is loads more to this plot line but that about covers the basics.

Okay - so a bit distant from the story we all know but to add a few more twists, King Richard dies early on leaving the actual throne to John - who on the surface is actually quite nice!!! The Sheriff of Nottingham is a bit of a sap, albeit beautifully played by Tom from Spooks but its the Merry Men and Friar Tuck who in my eyes steal the show (and the first time I have seen the actor Kevin Durand play a good guy role - look him up)they are absolutely hilarious!!

This film can easily be portrayed as a prequel to the Robin Hood we all know - it is only after facing the french army head on, led by their King and an English traitor (Mark Strong) bent on instigating civil war so the English borders are weakened do Robin and King John stand side by side, wreaking devastation of the advancing French troops - and for that part its a great partnership. But when the "adoration" of the troops is bestowed upon Robin and not King John does he get declared an outlaw... blah blah blah and then it ends. So a sequel maybe?? well there is no talk of one yet so who know...........maybe in the future.

As you know, I don't normally go on about the plots in this much detail but if you watch this film thinking you know what its all about you will be mistaken - a new plot, a new story and a new twist - personally I loved it.

There has been criticism about the accents, acting etc but don't let it bother you....its hardly noticeable and gets washed away with the great story and fight scenes very quickly.

A host of British & American talent star, including 1 Aussie and in general - this is a great film.

See this if...................Gladiator floats your boat

Saturday, 5 June 2010

39, The Tooth Fairy

What half term would not be complete with a trip to see the most recent kiddie flick. The thought of the "Rock" camping it up in yet another poor, unfunny kids film was almost too much to handle knowing that my wife and sister were in the next screen watching SATC2 but never mind - what's the worst that could happen?

Maybe a pleasant surprise!

Okay, as with most kids films this one is not going to win any Oscar's and Dwayne's performance is on par with that of his recent PG outings - the last 5 movies have all been kids flicks and Grid Iron Gang was his last major role of any interest but believe me when I say that this film is not about him. The supporting cast are amazingly funny.

Take The Rock out of the picture and Stephen Merchant is absolutely hilarious as the case worker Fairy Tracy and Julie Andrews and Billy Crystal also put in memorable performances.

But in my eyes its all about Tracy - The lanky spectacle of comedy perfection taking the form of Mr Gervais witty comedy sidekick stands well and truly on his own two feet playing a blinder alongside Dwayne's somewhat lack lustering portrayal of a down and out ex NHL hockey player, busted to the lower leagues due to injury and taking on a new girlfriend and her somewhat disappointed kids. Carly, the girlfriend is played by Ashley Judd - her first major role since forever and in her defence - plays her role with a touch of class.

This story focuses on childhood dreams and a kids perception of what is imaginable - even with that saying I have probably built more into the story than the producers did but if you have kids they will laugh out loud. If like me, you find Merchant the funnier of the Gervais / Merchant partnership then this one is for you. There are some good points to the film but no spoilers this time, just watch out for the scenes with Mary Poppins and Tracy the case worker fairy - even if you laugh at those bits alone it will be worth the time and money spent on seeing your little cherubs smile.

See this if................the half term is getting too much!!