Tag Archives: film blog

October Film Feast

Hola ma chicas, if you’re a wee bit interested, here’s a list of films I’m going to make a date with this month. It’s not all of them, I know, but they’re chunkiest most juiciest ones I wanna see.

Judy 02/10
Staring Renée Zellweger, Jessie Buckley & Finn Wittrock
Directed by Rupert Goold

Film: It’s 1969 and Judy Garland arrives in London for a five week sell out tour while battling depression, alcoholism and drug abuse.
Judy looks on the star and her final performances just a few months before her tragic death at 47.

Fact: some of the performances from that very tour in ’69 can be found YouTube.

From me: Judy’s life was a rollercoaster from being Two years old because of a hellbent and obsessed mother. Between the ’30s right through to the ’50’s, The Hollywood Studio System churned out films like toys off a conveyor belt until the US Government ended their monopoly; Judy was just one of the many cogs that churned that belt and it’s no secret how badly she was treated. Judy was starved, forced fed drugs and abused as a result of her young life in the system. This film is from her final year so I can only imagine it’s going to pack a punch.

Joker 04/10 
Starring Joaquin Phoenix, Robert De Niro, Zazie Beetz, and Frances Conroy
Directed by Todd Phillips

Film: An origin story of the DC Character, Joker.
Set in 1981 and failed as a comedian Arthur Fleck, slowly descends into madness, chaos and crime.

Fact: The Joker’s character is inspired from the film “The Man Who Laughs” made in 1928. It’s   based on a novel of the same name. A King sentences the main character, Gwynplaine, to have his face carved into a grin for crimes his father commited.

From me: I reckon any new depiction of the Joker is going to bring you back to all the Joker’s you’ve seen before – it does me. Cesar Romero 1966, Jack Nicholson 1989, Heath Ledger 2008 or Jared Leto 2016 – are all going to be compared to the next. The beauty being, with every new Joker – we get to see another deranged and depraved depiction of one of the most popular villains in cinema. One thing always remains the same, Joker is Batmans polar opposite but we have never seen such a detailed ascent to anarchy. I can’t wait to see how Joker got started being the most fun murderer on Tele.

Gemini Man 10/10
Starring Will Smith, Mary Elizabeth Winstead and Clive Owen
Directed by Ang Lee

Film: A retiring assassin, Henry Brogan, finds himself pursued by a mysterious killer that can predict his every move. Discovering that he’s being hunted by a younger clone of himself, Henry needs find out why he’s being targeted and who the creator is.

Fact: The film was first conceived in 1997 and has been tied to several writers, actors and directors since. Production didn’t actually begin until February 2018 though, meaning this film has been in the making for over 20 years.

From Me: “If I knew then, what I know now”, comes to mind when I heard what this film was about. Yes, yes, there’ll be fighting and action and we will all get to see a CGI version of the Fresh Prince, but I do hope the film has a bit more to it considering it’s seen so many writers over 20 years. Perhaps there’ll be some sort of poignant life lesson amongst all the fighting.

Maleficent 18/10
Directed by Joachim Rønning
Starring Angelina Jolie, Elle Fanning, Sam Riley and Michelle Pfeiffer

Film: It’s been a peaceful Five years for Maleficent and Aurora until Philip decides to propose. Suddenly, Aurora and Maleficent find themselves on opposite sides of a war between fairies and humans when Philip’s mother, Queen Ingrith manipulates the family apart.

Fact: the film wasn’t meant to be released for another Eight months.

From me: I expect this film will be fantasy version of Jeremy Kyle mixed with a hint of Romeo and Juliet. There’s nothing like the complexities that come with a family, especially two from opposing fantasy worlds. I am sure there’s going to be a few families that relate to the manipulative mother in law, Queen Ingrith.

Zombieland : double tap 18/10
Directed by Ruben Fleischer
Starring Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone, Abigail Breslin, and Bill Murray

Film: Tallahassee, Columbus, Wichita and Little Rock are back with a handful new survivors to join the Zombieland orphans. The Zombies are badder than bad after evolving into super Zombies, so we have to hope that the family and their new members have evolved into something stronger too!

Fact: The film is going to be released 10 years after the original as a special kind of anniversary.

From Me: Of all the Zombie films I have ever watched, Zombieland was my favourite (closely followed by Dawn of the Dead and World War Z). I loved the fact that it was a funny horror film with moments of real heartfelt drama, (oh, and “Bill Fucking Murray” was in it too). I aren’t sure how they are going to match the Original, but man, am I excited to see the gang again.

Terminator: dark fate 23/10
Directed by Tim Miller
Starring Linda Hamilton, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Edward Furlong

Film: Nearly 30 years after T:2, Sarah Connor and the T-800 must come to aid of Dani Ramos, a human-cyborg hybrid, when a liquid metal terminator is sent from the future.

Fact: James Cameron, the original creator of the franchise, only came aboard as a Producer when it was suggested Dark Fate would be a direct sequel to Terminator 2 and all the films since the 1991 blockbuster, would be discarded from the timeline. He had one condition, Schwarzenegger was involved.

From me: I’ve seen all the Terminator Movies, but I’ve only seen Terminator 1 & 2 more than once (I could probably recite T:2 backwards… maybe not). The films that came after Terminator 2 were never going to live up to the originals because they just didn’t have the same message, they weren’t trying to convey the same idea that Cameron’s films are rooted with. Cameron doesn’t make action films, he makes films about people,  about humanity and the two sides of it’s face; Then he decorates them with action and drama (Do I sound like a Cameron fan-girl?). There may be a few that disagree but I genuinely hope that there’s a Cameron stamp on this film, that’s the only way it will Terminate at the Box office – ha.

The beach bum 25/10
Directed by Harmony Korine
Starring Matthew McConaughey, Snoop Dogg, Isla Fisher, Zac Efron, Jimmy Buffett, Martin Lawrence and Jonah Hill

Film: Moondog’s a writer that loves Pot, Beer and Good Times. He’s never out of his comfort zone until his daughters wedding, where a bumpy journey of losing control and self discovery begins.

Fact: While he was on Jimmy Kimmel Live, McConaughey told how Snoop Dogg swapped out fake prop marijuana.

From me: McConaughey is one of my all time favourite actors and like every other film he’s in I am sure it’s going to be great. It’s on of the only reasons it made it on this list because it sounds a bit silly. But, I have only briefly scanned the internet to get bits of info about it so I don’t spoil it. It could be amazing. I already feel like ‘the making of this film’ would probably be as good as the film though and that’s after only a few minutes of scrolling posts about it.

Monos 25/10
Directed by Alejandro Landes
Starring Julianne Nicholson and Moisés Arias

Film: on a remote mountain in Latin America a young group of rebel soldiers watching over a hostage are driven apart when they’re ambushed and driven into the jungle.

Fact: The film is set on site, in some of the most remote places of Latin America, that have never been filmed before

From me: This film has been circulating for less than 6 months and it’s already accumulated awards and nominations of all kinds. I had to be careful finding things out about this film because I really did not want to spoil it. As it turns out, it was not difficult to see that there’s children, alcohol, drugs, sex, the great outdoors, violence and an overbearing presence known as the Organization; the drama that will unfold, I can only imagine, will be dark and brutal.

Doctor Sleep 31/10
Directed by Mike Flanagan
Starring Ewan McGregor, Rebecca Ferguson and Kyliegh Curran

Traumatised by the events of his childhood Dan Torrence, struggles with alcoholism and finding peace in his life. Sought out by Abra, a teenager with the gift of the ‘shine’ she begs for his help against a cruel cult, the True Knot.

Fact: The Doctor Sleep Novel by Stephen King came out in 2013 and Warner Bros started developing the adaptation by 2014.

From Me: It must be really something to write a bunch of stories and create a movie franchise like Stephen Kings has. Imagine writing the most nightmarish things you can think of and one of the largest entertainment companies on the planet just churning them out; making them real on the big screen -Must be mental. I don’t have much to say on this film because I refuse to read about it until after I watch it.

That’s my Film Feast this month anyway. I hope you enjoy being at the pictures as much as me.

The quake

Kelly was hiding beneath a door that had come off its hinges; the bottom half was wedged in the door frame and the top half was resting on the kitchen table. Her hand was clasped over her mouth as she tried to stay quiet and control her breathing.

*****

Kelly lived on her own in a 1st floor flat on an estate in Dagenham, East London.

It was about 2am when she woke up. Her bed was shaking, the ornaments decorating her room were rattling and the two pictures on her wall crashed to the floor as the rumbles ended.

The last time she felt anything similar was in 2008 – she woke up to an earthquake then too.

There was a little delay after, but then she could hear dogs barking, car and house alarms going off and people shouting and children crying.

But then she heard screaming, then she heard more screaming.

Had someone been killed by that little tremor? She thought.

She jumped out of bed, but there was screaming coming from everywhere. Even the hall on her floor.

She pulled on her joggers and hoody piled up next to her bed, and as she went out the bedroom door she slotted her feet into her trainers. She looked through the spyhole in her front door and saw someone rush past.

Was there a fire? Becoming a little frantic, she undid the Yale lock, turned the key and finally took the hook off the catch.

She opened the door in a scramble and as she was about to head out, she saw Mrs Jackson from number 14 on the floor holding a bloody hand out to her. A man in a Tracksuit covered in blood was clawing at her chest like a dog trying to find a bone.

“Mrs Jackson”, Kelly screamed. The hooded man looked up and snarled. He leapt forward but Kelly was still behind the door. She slammed it closed as he thudded against it.

She ran to find her mobile phone out of her bedroom when there was another rumble. This time the shaking was a terrifying rocking. The floor and the walls were vibrating -big, swaying vibrations.

Seconds after the violent tremor began, giant cracks began to appear. She could hear the pots and pans rattling out of the cupboards in the kitchen and smashing to the floor.

She managed to make it into the kitchen as her front door banged open. The ceiling just before the kitchen door began to collapse. The kitchen door cracked off forcing her to the ground under its weight. The door had become wedged above her, protecting her from the rest of the smashing and crashing which was so loud she had to clamp her hands over ears.

For a long time she held her hands on her ears and her eyes were so tightly clamped shut that it hurt when she finally opened them.

She didnt know she had been screaming until the tremor finally came to an end. She stopped a few seconds after it finished, the shrill sound ringing through her head.

There were no car alarms this time. No house alarms and the screaming seemed to have stopped for the moment.

A pipe had burst and Kelly could feel her clothes shrink to her legs the cold water hit.

She began to try and wiggle free when she heard a snarl from above the door.

film review. brightburn

MOVIE: Brightburn

YEAR: 2019

DIRECTOR: David Yarovesky

WRITER: Brian Gunn, Mark Gunn

MAIN CAST: Jackson A. Dunn, David Denman, Elizabeth BAnks

RUNNING TIME: 1hr 30min

There are spoilers below…

I try and avoid movie trailers out of fear that they will spoil a film or take something away from it. Most of the time I feel like they show way too much information and as though they somehow force me to develop an opinion about a film before I have even seen it.

Brandon Breyer

Brightburn was one of those times I ended up seeing the trailer and although I wouldn’t necessarily say I developed an opinion about the film I did start thinking up questions about it and I was coming back to Superman every-time.

ooooo, I thought, interesting – my initial reaction to the first few seconds of the trailer. Then as it went on I began to cringe a little, ah I don’t know. I mean, a bad Superman? Is that where they’re going with this? We’ve seen Superman turn bad. Then again, we’ve never seen him start out bad. Ok – they’re either gona do this good or it’s gona be real bad.

I kept seeing odd buzz words around the film though: Horror, Gory, Bad seed, Evil Superhero. I was wondering, how dark is this gona be?

When I thought about a bad Superman, I couldn’t help going back to the 1983 Superman III starring Christopher Reeve. It’s the one where Superman splits into an evil version of himself after being exposed to synthetic kryptonite. He becomes a bit of a horny, juvenile alcoholic. Sure some of the stuff he does is a bit bad, but considering the power he wields he doesn’t go that mental. This got me hoping Brightburn wasn’t just about a moody Mama’s boy going through puberty.

Superman and Clark Kent

To be fair, the trailer made it quite clear the little dude in this film was one step ahead of getting wasted, blowing out the Olympic Torch and straightening out the Leaning Tower of Pisa (Superman III). He is definitely a bit of a psycho, but how far was he really going to go? Was he just going to maim people? Or was this angelic looking kid going to just go to full on Killing sprees? I think there’s a few occasions in the DC comics where Superman goes a bit nuts and even starts killing members of the Justice League, so maybe he will go that far?

The Gunn brothers, Mark and Brian, that wrote the screenplay are adamant the film is not based on a ‘bad Superman’, but an already evil alien raised on earth. I don’t read about films until I’ve seen them so most of this I didn’t really pick up until afterward.

However, perhaps I should have observed that statement a little harder while I watched it. I got caught up on this whole Evil Superman parallel, that it was easy to only see the Superman element.

Yes! There’s bunch of references paying homage to Superman from the red cape to the laser beam eyes. Yes! Like the Superman back-story, a baby crash lands on a farm and Mr & Farmer decide to raise the baby as their own, but you can read more about all those on another site.

Forget for a minute that Brightburn had anything to do with Superman at all.

What got my skin crawling is what’s implied about Brandon’s backstory and what he’s going through. After much consideration, I think Brandon is less like Superman – and more like some killer Wasp-Bee alien, and here’s why.

To give that a little more context, I’m going to start from the scene in the school where Brandon talks about bees and wasps.

By the complex answer he gives his teacher when they’re learning about the Bees and the Wasps Brandon appears to be smarter than the average kid. The other children tease Brandon; he is clearly different to them and maybe they all sense that.

I don’t think this scene just makes a point about how smart Brandon is, or how the other kids in the class are bullying him. I think this scene is a big clue about why he landed on Earth and what makes this film stand away from Superman.

I’ll expand on what Brandon talks about to show where I’m coming from. Brandon says about the aggressive nature of wasps and how they don’t have the ability to create hives so they take them over by brute force. True Brood Wasps are insects that infiltrate host nests as larvae (like Brandon as a baby) and are raised by the adult hosts (like Tori and Kyle). Cuckoo Bumblebees do the same, but also release pheromones in order to slip past bee security and kill or subdue the queen of entire colonies and take them over, forcing the host worker-hive to feed their offspring.

I think showing him being bullied is by the other kids at school could also be seen as they are poking the wasp nest – so to speak but I won’t get carried away.

When Brandon wakes up in the middle of the night after a seizure, the hidden space-vessel he came in seems to have sent out psychic messages awakening his powers of strength, flight and speed (not to mention the laser eyes). Later in the film Brandon cracks the psychic code and realises its telling him to TAKE THE WORLD – which he seems to take to like a Cuckcoo Bee takes a colony.

Yeah, from here on in, Brandon starts displaying a whole load of manipulative and twisted behaviour that involves bloodshed and threats – but there’s a fair few indicators that what he’s been going through doesn’t just start after the seizure in bed.

Knowing that despite his innocent appearance, Brandon is not a real human child, Kyle points out the things he’s noticed as they have raised him.

Kyle and Tori discover some magazine clippings which aren’t just teenage boy spank-bank material. Beneath a few pictures of bikini models, there’s pictures and drawings of the anatomy of people. The notebook that he is always writing in is quite tatted and used up and when we see it later in the film, there’s a lot of disturbing content (even the logo he stamps everywhere is like a rudimentary bee or wasp stamp). It all suggests these are things that have been playing on his mind for a while. It’s not quite as simple as a Space-ship talking to him awakening some sudden urge to kill, it seems Brandon has been wondering what people look like from the inside-out, for a lot longer.

Does he want to know our anatomy so he can kill us easily? Does he want to lay eggs in our abdomen? Is he going to eat us when he is done? I mean, when he stuck his finger in the blood on his dying uncles face, I half expected him to lick it off!!

Ok I aren’t clutching at straws here – I can give this Bee-Wasp Alien theory a bit more traction.

Another part of the film that seems to back up the idea of Brandon infiltrating Earth to potentially colonise it like the Cuckoo Bee, is his interest in Caitlyn. Despite the fact that he crushes her hand, in some sort of controlling and manipulative effort he still wants to pursue her sexually. The reason I specifically say sexually, is because the first thing he does after Kyle ‘gives him the talk (about the birds and the bees‘) is stalk her in her bedroom. It’s also more carnal than it is romantic especially because he actually stalks her. Even after he breaks her hand he is still imposing. Has he intended her as his mate?

Ok so enough about that – one of thee main and most definitive reasons I think Brandon is a Wasp Monster… The insect-like hooded-mask he wears. I mean, come on, could you get more symbolic than that? He hovers like a wasp, he moves at speed like a wasp, he’s aggressive and parasitic and imposing – he even wears a wasp mask!!

So if I forget for a minute that the word Superman is even remotely related to this little monster, I become extremely creeped out. I reckon Brandon is more likely from a liege of Super Wasp Aliens that can morph into their hosts, permeate an entire planet and destroy it with no conscience.

If you think I’m totally off the mark then message me or comment. I’d love to hear it.

…anything but Superman related comparisons!

film review. child’s play

MOVIE: Child’s Play

YEAR: 2019

DIRECTOR: Lars Klevberg

WRITER: Tyler Burton Smith

MAIN CAST: Gabriel Bateman, Mark Hamill, Aubry Plaza

RUNNING TIME: 1hr 30min

There are spoilers below…

The year before I was born, Charles Lee Ray possessed a doll and began a murder rampage that lasted over 30 years-

Chucky and Andy

well he didn’t, ’cause Charles Lee Ray was a fictional character in a film called Child’s Play – but the Doll, Chucky was recognised by any kid born in the 90’s as the franchise kept pumping out horror films. We even saw Chucky get married and have a kid!

Ok, so by the time he had that kid, anyone who saw the original few movies was beginning to get a little bored (to put it nicely) and by the time Cult of Chucky came out, Chucky was nose-diving into box-office bomb-oblivion.

The other night I went to see a contemporary take on my favourite killer toy and I don’t know what I expected (I’d purposely not even read a synopsis on the new film), but I did not expect what I got.

I was sold. Reboots are risky business. You may have the die-hard fans of the originals who want scrutinise every frame for fault; pre-dispostioned to hate whatever comes onscreen, then they go off and spread their narrow opinions.

Well, other than being really really picky, I think for a reboot – Child’s Play 2019 is bang on the money.

Ok, so instead of a possessed doll, Child’s Play 2019 is something more like a killer toy version of Alexa. Buddi is an artificially intelligent Doll. Designed for the modern family, he syncs with all your Kaslan Products. He keeps an eye on your kids, remembers their favourite shows and he is the best friend every kid deserves to have (that’s the sale angle anyways).

Chucky Rebooted

Manufactured in a Vietnamese factory a disgruntled worker decides he’s going to switch off the safety protocols of a Buddi doll, before he throws himself out of a window.

After seeing the Buddi doll may be faulty, a shopper returns it to the store – where a single mum, to a kid called Andy, works. She takes Buddi home and the rest is history.

The best thing about a reboot is that it’s a new start to an already existing fictional universe. It gives other creative minds the opportunity to put their new stamp on an old idea.

One of my favourite things about this reboot is that it’s taken something implausible (voodoo and possession) and made it plausible (computers, internet, the cloud, artificial intelligence). The “fear of technology” isn’t a new concept when it comes to horror films, but it does help to draw you in when you can conceive the idea as a true possibility.

Lars brings the Chucky Franchise out of the Voodoo age and into the Digital Age. The kids have phones, the old lady across the hall can finally work Uber and drones are on sale at Zed Mart; If there’s a time to be scared of AI, the time is now.

Chucky and Andy

My second favourite thing about this movie is Andy and his mates. This kinda ties in with the 80’s theme of adventure nostalgia seen in the new IT film and Stranger Things the Netflix Series. People are mad for a bit of kids against the world. I thought the acting was brilliant and the dialogue and interaction with the kids, the adults and even Chucky was believable, engaging and funny. Quite a few times through the film I couldn’t help but think Chucky was the cutest! I even felt sad for Andy and Chucky when Falyn pulled the power source out of Chucky’s chest.

Pugg Falyn Andy Omar

I thought Lars did a smashing job of sharing out the credit while also making the new Child’s Play New. Not only were there a bunch of nods to the original Child’s Play but also to a whole other movie catalogue from around the same time.

From the very start, the original Orion logo in the opening credits was probably what had me bought and sold. I remember it vividly from all my favourite films when I was a little kid. I remember it at the start of Robocop and of course Lars even slotted a reference to that in too.

There’s a few little eggs for Child’s Play, the most obvious being the Doll, Andy, his (almost single) Mum and of course the whole thing gets started with a violent death on a stormy night.

Other acknowledgements are when Andy begins the Buddi set-up he tries to call the Doll Han-Solo. Mark Hamill is the voice of Chucky and played Luke Skywaker in the Star Wars films. Han Solo was the other main guy in Star Wars and Chucky just ends up naming himself completely ignoring the Han Solo suggestion.

Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 is a slasher movie from 1986. About this time, a whole host of slasher-gore films were beginning to pop up where comedy was a staple element. Seeing how everyone finds it hilarious to see Leatherface wearing a victims skin during a scene where Andy and his new mates are having a movie night, Chucky becomes kind of inspired by the violent scenes on-screen and decides to give it a go himself.

Leatherface

From 1988 – the year the original Child’s Play was released, Andy’s Bedroom has posters of Poltergeist III and Killer Klowns from Outer Space.

Andy’s posters

Killer Klowns is another Horror-Comedy. Like in E.T the Extra Terrestrial, another 80’s movie, Chucky’s finger lights up when he is controlling various Kaslan products.

In the 90’s another movie franchise began called Leprechaun, about…. you guessed it, a Leprechaun. Only this Leprechaun is pure psycho killer. Like Child’s Play and Texas Horror, this too is riddled with funny scenes of death and violence. You can see the reference in the Zed-Mart toward the end of the film where there’s the Leprechaun version of the Buddi2 doll and the Pot of Gold accessories.

There’s a couple other eggs hidden in there but you should just have a crack at trying to see them yourself by watching it again.

I know I will be.

It’s the best reboot I’ve ever seen and I am already hoping there’s a sequel.