27 August, 2014

The Inbetweeners 2 review

Genre: Comedy, Romance,
Starring: Simon Bird, Joe Thomas, James Buckley, Blake Harrison, Emily Berrington,
Year Of Release: 2014
Certificate: 12A (UK)
Runtime: 96 Minutes
Director: Damon Beesley & Iain Morris
Synopsis: "Jay, Neil, Simon, and Will reunite in Australia for a holiday." IMDB

Not sure how many of many readers will have even heard of "The Inbetweeners", I know the American adaptation wasn't received very well and I don't know how much of a release the first film got outside the UK. Well for those of you who don't know, the film is based on a TV Series that ran for three series from 2008-2010, the show had a very critical acclaim here so it wasn't that much of a shock when it was announced. However, the first film was a complete and utter let down, they took a step away from their Comedy roots and went for a Rom-Com and failed across the board, anyway back to this one.

The film starts off with Jay (James Buckley) giving us a wonderfully and the lads an overly dramatised version of his life living down under in the land of Aus' working in a top nightclub calling himself "DJ Big Penis", back in sunny ol' England, Simon (Joe Thomas) is in University studying sociology and still dating his girlfriend from the first film Lucy (Tamla Kari) who is now an absolute psychopath to say the least. While Will (Simon Bird) is also at University having the same luck he as always had when it comes to friends, then we have Neil (Blake Harrison) living his deluded happy life as he always has done.

The three lads stuck at home decided to go to surprise Jay and flight to Australia for a visit, they arrive in the top night club in which "DJ Big Penis" is claimed to be working, they find Jay working in the toilets in the club. Will bumps into an old friend Katie (Emily Berrington) who he claims was his first love, she persuades him to go to Byron Bay where Will meets a rival for her heart Ben (Freddie Stroma) a guitar playing, trust fund inheriting, dreadlock rocking douchebag, type of person you want to fail at life.

As the film unravels, we find out Jay has an ulterior motive for moving to Australia, he has his own little "side mission" shall we say, leading him to have some extremely memorable scenes. I don't want to delve any more into the story without giving away pivotal parts of the film, however don't be expecting a perfect script the film is all about the gags and boy does it deliver in that department.

Overall, in my honest opinion it is at least ten times the film the first one tried to be, where the first relied heavily one the romance and letting the comedy slide, the second has its romantic elements but never lets it get in the way of some of the funniest moments in films in recent years. The film is full to the brim of gut busting laughs, I advise you buy it on DVD/Blu-Ray when you can because you will need to pause at times to catch your breath. There's a laugh for each of Jays apparent lovers, all 6,004 of them ha.

9/10

26 August, 2014

2014 Emmy winners

Here is a list of the winners from the 66th (2014) Emmy Awards;

Drama

  • Drama Series: "Breaking Bad," AMC.
  • Actor, Drama Series: Bryan Cranston, "Breaking Bad," AMC.
  • Actress, Drama Series: Julianna Margulies, "The Good Wife," CBS.
  • Supporting Actor, Drama Series: Aaron Paul, "Breaking Bad," AMC.
  • Supporting Actress, Drama Series: Anna Gunn, "Breaking Bad," AMC.
  • Directing, Drama Series: Cary Joji Fukunaga, "True Detective," HBO.
  • Writing, Drama Series: Moira Walley-Beckett, "Breaking Bad," AMC.

 Comedy

  • Comedy Series: "Modern Family," ABC.
  • Actor, Comedy Series: Jim Parsons, "The Big Bang Theory," CBS.
  • Actress, Comedy Series: Julia Louis-Dreyfus, "Veep," HBO.
  • Supporting Actor, Comedy Series: Ty Burrell, "Modern Family," ABC.
  • Supporting Actress, Comedy Series: Allison Janney, "Mom," CBS
  • Directing, Comedy Series: Gail Mancuso, "Modern Family," ABC
  • Writing, Comedy Series: Louis C.K., "Louie," FX

Miniseries, Movie & Vairety

  • Miniseries: "Fargo," FX
  • Movie: "The Normal Heart," HBO
  • Actor, Miniseries or Movie: Benedict Cumberbatch, "Sherlock: His Last Vow," PBS
  • Actress, Miniseries or Movie: Jessica Lange, "American Horror Story: Coven," FX.
  • Supporting Actress, Miniseries or Movie: Kathy Bates, "American Horror Story: Coven," FX.
  • Supporting Actor, Miniseries or Movie: Martin Freeman, "Sherlock: His Last Vow," PBS.
  • Directing, Miniseries, Movie or Dramatic Special: Adam Bernstein, "Fargo," FX.
  • Writing, Miniseries, Movie or Dramatic Special: Stephen Moffat, "Sherlock: His Last Vow," PBS.
  • Variety Series: "The Colbert Report," Comedy Central.
  • Writing, Variety Special: Sarah Silverman, "Sarah Silverman: We Are Miracles," HBO.
  • Directing, Variety Special: Glenn Weiss, "67th Annual Tony Awards," CBS.
  • Reality-Competition Program: "The Amazing Race," CBS.

James Bond 24 going old school???

Looks like James Bond 24's production is moving forward at a nice pace, now they are working on some casting for the upcoming film. According to MI6 a website dedicated to James Bond himself are reporting that Daniel Craig will be facing "someone extremely physically fit and over 6' 2", check out the apparent casting call here;

"Casting has begun for the main assassin, with the search specifically focussed on someone extremely physically fit and over 6' 2". Whoever wins the role will have several altercations with Daniel Craig's 007 throughout the film and also a driving sequence. Former sports athletes will be under consideration along with anyone 'very unusual'. The character has the working name of 'Hinx' (which may change before shooting starts) and is said to be between 30 and 45 years old... The goal is to find the next Jaws or Oddjob - a henchman so different to anything that has gone before that they will become instantly iconic in the film series,"

Does this mean we are set to see the return of the over the top iconic henchman like in previous Bond instalments some of the wonders like Jaws or Oddjob? That would be a great addition to the newer Bond world, I loved watching Jaws as a kid he is still an all time favourite villain to a lot of fans of the franchise I know.

25 August, 2014

"As Above, So Below" red band trailer

I haven't been on the look out lately for Horror films, even though they're my favourite genre of film. They have been given a back seat due to the high amount of brilliant blockbusters we have been given, so when a friend told me about a Horror film set in the French catacombs of Paris I was intrigued to say the least.

The film stars Ben Feldman, Perdita Weeks and Edwin Hodge and they go into the French catacombs, here is the synopsis as IMDB has it;

"When a team of explorers ventures into the catacombs that lie beneath the streets of Paris, they uncover the dark secret that lies within this city of the dead."

The Expendables 3 review

Genre: Action, Crime, Adventure, Thriller,
Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Atonio Banderas, Jet Li, Wesley Snipes, Dolph Lundgren, Kelsey Grammer, Randy Couture, Terry Crews, Kellan Lutz, Ronda Rousey, Glen Powell, Victor Ortiz, Robert Davi, Mel Gibson, Harrison Ford, Arnold Schwarzenegger,
Year Of Release: 2014
Certificate: 12A (UK)
Runtime: 126 Minutes
Director: Patrick Hughes
Synopsis: "Barney augments his team with new blood for a personal battle: to take down Conrad Stonebanks, the Expendables co-founder and notorious arms trader who is hell bent on wiping out Barney and every single one of his associates." IMDB

Let me just start off by saying all you people who are saying "this film lacks substance", "no character development" or "just Action porn". You people need smack upside the head, this film never advertised itself as anything but a pure Action ride popcorn flick. You wouldn't go into "The Godfather" and complain there isn't enough Spaceships, so don't go into a popcorn flick expecting an Oscar worthy performance or perfect script! Now that is out the way onto the review.

We're back for a third instalment in easily one of my most enjoyable franchises for a long time, I love a full on over the top Action film and The Expendables franchise never fails to deliver in that department. However, this film does come with a 12A certificate which is obvious when you watch it with the lack of actual blood they use, that doesn't mean there is enough over the top violence to enjoy.

The film starts off with the the Expendables rescuing a former member Doctor Death (Snipes) after a prolonged spell spent under the capture of some Russians, turns out there is no razors where he was kept because Snipes is rocking a hella beard! Within the first fifteen minutes of the film we get an armoured prison train, helicopters, boats, planes, tankers, jeeps, missiles, guns, knives and explosion that would make an everyday man wet his pants. However the Expendables escaped unscathed, well all but one Caeser (Crews) finds himself left in a critical way after Conrad Stonebankes (Gibson) leaves him that way in his escape.

This latest close call has Barney (Stallone) disbanding his near perfect team due to the fear that they're all getting to old. Leaving Barney and his badass companion Bonaparte (Grammer) to race around America and Mexico gathering a new rag tag bunch of younger and possibly even dumber Expendables (Rousey, Ortiz and Powell) however there is one older addition to his crew Galgo (Banderas) and damn does Banderas deliver, his verbal diarrhoea is enough to drive any sane man to tears however some of the stuff he comes out with will leave you in tears of laughter.

Overall the film delivers in all the areas you expect from such an Action flick, full of explosions, gunfire, destruction and hilarious one lines one that sticks out is Arnie dropping a "Get to da choppa!" retort that made me nearly keel over on the spot. Plus we get a solid performance from Harrison Ford, leaps and bounds better than Bruce Wills' ever gave us. Then we have Mr Mel Gibson who may have just made himself the go to guy for the big dog villain in the future. He is the most deranged, crazy, insane, is there any point? I will run out of superlatives, Mel is phenomenal I can't wait to see him again.

I highly recommend this film and I always will, they're just pure Action porn, however what more can you ask for from a film that is purely built around recreating 80s Action nostalgia? So PLEASE, PLEASE if you want to see it, go see it and help these guys make some money back and get us a fourth, fifth or heck even a fifteen ha.

8/10

22 Jump Street review

Genre: Comedy, Action, Buddy-Cop
Starring: Channing Tatum, Jonah Hill, Peter Stormare, Ice Cube, Amber Stevens, Wyatt Russell, Nick Offerman.
Year Of Release: 2014
Certificate: 15 (UK)
Runtime: 112 Minutes
Director: Phil Lord and Christopher Miller
Synopsis: "After making their way through high school (twice), big changes are in store for officers Schmidt and Jenko when they go deep undercover at a local college." IMDB

Not going to jump on the hype, I will be straight up honest none of the trailers done it for me, just felt like recycled jokes from the first and an unneeded sequel. So now you know my thoughts going in, here is my "review" I guess.

So here we are round two in a franchise, a franchise in my eyes I couldn't see progressing after the first, not that I didn't enjoy the first it was a surprisingly enjoyable watch so I was worried about the second. You know sequels usually don't live up and Comedy sequels in recent years have been extremely poor "The Hangover Part II & III" spring to mind quicker than you can say "Why was Justin Bartha even in it?". There it is a sequel to a reboot of a TV Series, wow who'd have thought it ha. The first was a shockingly good success, which now a days means they have to make a sequel.

It is a very stupid concept to stick to your formula to an exact, however the guys behind the success of 21 decided to stick with it even with their bigger budget, however the big budget didn't get to their heads they stayed true to their nob gags, slapstick and the fact Jenko (Tatum) is a few bullets short of a full clip. All we truly care about with a film like this is over the top action, the Comedy that borders on idiotic and enjoyable characters, so three ticks there.

However, plot is one of the last things you care about when watching a film of this calibre. That being said here is a brief outline without giving away to much. The film revolves around Jenko and Schmidt trying to track down the latest drug craze sweeping the school scene (of wait we're in college now) WHY-FHY, huge over lying element is the dealer may be Jenko's new best bud Zook (Russell). This time around we get to see Jenko in his element like, while Schmidt is swimming in the deep waters fearing their border line homoerotic bromance is over.

Tatum and Hill have a brilliant on screen relationship, from the get go their on screen presence is as good as it was in 21 along with a barrage of self-referential humour from Jenko joking about protecting the White House to pretty much EVERYTHING Deputy Chief Hardy (Offerman) says. However, Tatum and Hill aren't the only ones on top of their game in the film, every scene that Ice Cube has playing Captain Dickson he steals and makes his own, so many times do you forget how insanely funny his character is when he gets angry and this time around he is even angrier.

Overall, the film is so much better than I expected I went in expecting one or two laughs here or there boy was I wrong I laughed pretty much the whole way through. You will be in pain from pure laughter, however I do have one complaint and that is the film is a bit too long, just as you finally feel like it's dragging there is a truly incredible credits scene that will make the dragging feeling disappear in an instance. I've seen some fellow reviewers saying "bigger AND better" however, in my honest opinion, bigger doesn't always mean better, they should be saying "bigger yet equally as funny".

7/10

17 August, 2014

The Purge: Anarchy review

Genre: Action, Thriller, Drama, Horror.
Starring: Frank Grillo, Carmen Ejogo, Zach Gilford, Kiele Sanchez, Zoe Soul, Michael K Williams, Justina Machado, John Beasley.
Year Of Release: 2014
Certificate: 15 (UK)
Runtime: 103 Minutes
Director: Jason DeMonaco
Synopsis: "A young couple works to survive on the streets after their car breaks down right as the annual purge commences." IMDB

Going into this film I had absolutely zero expectations, the first one was such a let down I struggled to even bring myself to watch this one. However the trailers for this had more of the vibe you'd expect for a film set within this world.

The Purge: Anarchy gets rid of all its original cast, thankfully, however they do keep all the elements that gave the first film the potential to be brilliant. A future in which America attempts to keep their criminals in check by allowing them a lawless night once a year. This time around we get a full on free-for-all street massacring world, unlike the first which took place in a rich suburb within one household pretty much.

The basic plot of the film is that Leo (Frank Grillo) is out on a revenge mission which we find out the specifics for late in the film, however even the most basic movie follower can suss out the story early on. Grillo ends up helping and protecting four strangers he meets while out on his own personal "purge" these are Eva (Carmen Ejogo), her daughter Cali (Zoe Soul) and a married couple Shane (Zach Gilford) and Liz (Kiele Sanchez) whose car decided to die on the night of the "purge".

The film itself is avast improvement on the first, with the first I struggle to even finish it, the second was a thoroughly enjoyable film. Don't get me wrong it will not go down as an all time great, however it is a fun popcorn flick as they say. It's surprising how much better it is, considering it is merely a year later it released and written and directed by the same guy Jason DeMonaco. This next part is a !!!SPOILER!!! potentially, in the first film there is a character called "Dwayne" and the actor returns for the second but they do not tell you who it is, he is the guy with the mask on that says "God".

Overall the film is a clean slate in the universe introduced in the first film, it's a great Thrill-ride with characters that you can relate to unlike the first. While the film is pretty brutal and gory at times it manages to keep itself from becoming a pure gore flick like you expect may happen.  There were several scenes that could have been incredibly violent and gruesome, however they were rather conserved, leaving you to imagine the brutality which I personally love. 

6/10