rhysfrench's Movie Ratings - Rotten Tomatoes

Movie Ratings and Reviews

The Hangover
The Hangover(2009)
½

Getting over my initial delight that Bradley Cooper is finally on his way to the A-List where he belongs - The Hangover is as fresh a comedy as they come. Putting a new spin on a classic tale, and using just enough gross out humour to make things realistic and relatable to. The fresh faced cast is proof that its the performances and the script that matter in movies, not star power.

Milk
Milk(2008)

While Harvey Milk was clearly an important man, and the performances on other here are amazing and seemingly perfect - Milk leaves you with a strong sense of underwhelment, and irrelevance. Perhaps this is a true reflection on the life that Milk lead, but as a movie goer it left me cold.

Confetti
Confetti(2006)

A welcome surprise. Confetti showcases some of the best of British comedy, only with everyone on lupe warm form. Each of the actors are far removed from their individual peaks - but still some laughs and warmth to be enjoyed.

Choke
Choke(2008)

Not the deliciously dark film I was expecting. but still a thoughtful portrayal of a broken man trying to find his way. Sam Rockwell keeps getting better and better, while Huston is always a welcome addition to any cast.

Blindness
Blindness(2008)

Blindness is a disappointment - that is inescapable - however there is still a lot to get from this film. The premise is certainly intriguing and fresh, while the cast do bring earnest, realistic portrayals (the evil male rapists aside). Thought provoking sure, thrilling - not so much.

Cocaine Cowboys
½

An interesting insight into a complicated and morally ambiguous world often overlooked here in Europe. Does it make for good filmmaking? not so sure.

Fracture
Fracture(2007)

Unfortunately a bit too far up its own arse for its own good. Hopkins is perverted creepy rather than vindictive creepy. Gosling and the plot do what they can, but ultimately it ruins itself.

Terminator Salvation

Terminator Salvation is fucking awesome -- don't let anyone tell you otherwise!

Tense, taught and reinvigorating the franchise.

Naruto the Movie 2: Legend of the Stone of Gelel (Gekijô-ban Naruto: Daigekitotsu! Maboroshi no chitei iseki dattebayo!)

A more accomplished stand alone story than the first movie - but not as engaging and fun. Still Naruto has plenty to offer!

Drag Me to Hell
½

Unfortunately not the revelation I was hoping for! Yes it is thrilling, jump out of your seat, hilarious, gross out stuff -- but it peaks far too early in the day - veering in totally the wrong direction. Whats more Alison Lohman is so incredibly annoying you just wish they would hurry up and kill her off.

Still all this being said -- not one to miss -- especially if you are in the mood for cheap thrills!

Dirty Deeds
Dirty Deeds(2005)

A pleasantly enjoyable teen romp. Nothing new here - just Milo Ventimiglia on worse form than Heroes S3. This being said its still a pleasant way to spend an evening!

Freddy Got Fingered

Not nearly as monotonous as you might expect - but still pretty damn shite...

Angels & Demons
½

More ridiculous than Da Vinci and no Audrey Toutou to boot!! Where is the appeal? Certainly not in MgGreggor's disastrous Priest. Instead get your thrills from the whirlwind tour of Rome...

Futurama: Into the Wild Green Yonder

The second DVD Futurama movie to disapoint - although definately an improvement on Bender's game. This time around it all seems a little too neat and on auto pilot. Lets hope they can redeem themselves with the newly commissioned fifth full season :D

Futurama: Bender's Game

Definately not Futurama at its best - but still a pleasure.

Star Trek
Star Trek(2009)
½

JJ "2nd only to Wheedon" Abrams could make make paint drying a riveting experience. Infusing a dead franchise with modern energy, emotion and tension. This is trademark Abrams and all the more awesome for it. Alias movie next please kind sir!

Waltz with Bashir

The unique animation style, heavy subject material and difficult language will make this hard to penetrate but stick with it and you shall be rewarded. Less an entertainment piece than an enlightenment in to a difficult period of time little discussed.

Coraline
Coraline(2009)
½

Not the classic that some might have you believe, but still entertaining and "out there" enough to impress -- just darker next time please!!

Mongol
Mongol(2008)
½

Ambitious, unique and intriguing.

X-Men Origins - Wolverine

X-Men or X2 this is not -- but it certainly provides bounds more entertainment than the blasphemy of The Last Stand.

Wolverine does not pretend to be smart or deep - instead it aims to deliver a full blown, hard hitting action spectacle. On this level it suceeds. Don't get me wrong I too was hoping for the ''real' follow up to X2 -- but its hard to begrudge Wolverine for falling a little short after all this is not a Bryan Singer movie!

So despite some great action set pieces and Jackman on terrific tortured form, onto the faults! The main issue here is the criminal underuse and under development of the supporting characters. X-Men was never designed to be a one man show -- and it cracks begin to show in the Wolverine show. Seeing Gambit and Deadpool sidelined to essentially 5 minute cameos is pure torture leaving you practically crying out for more. Perhaps the studio is saving them for similar one man show vehicles -- but I wish they wouldnt. Why have 3 or 4 mediocre films when you can have one awesome one! (Well we all know why...)

Also as a side note -- hurray for Junior Cyclops -- just a shame Marsden wasn't involved!

Bottom line here -- lots of bang for your buck, just not as deep and intelligent as you had hoped -- much like Wolverine really!

Fled
Fled(1996)

Fled is a pleasant surprise! Cheap and cheerful it may be, but its none the less entertaining. The chemistry between Fishburne and Baldwin doesn't entirely feel natural, but it still works and is the source of most of the big laughs. Meanwhile the action is suitably revved up and simple to keep you going through its relatively short running time!

Major props to Hayek -- can this woman do any wrong?! as usual adding another star to the review!!

Ferris Bueller's Day Off
½

Very much a product of the 80s but still remains likeable, cheeky and enjoyable to a modern audience.

Broderick oozes swagger and self confidence, while Ruck is equally spot on as his begrudging tag along.

At least for me Ferris Bueller was not a laugh out loud, balls out comedy - but it did raise a few smiles, and overall impressed -- you can definately trace back the roots of many teen comedies to this, making it arguably essential viewing.

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
½

Perhap's fear and loathing demands a knowledge of the source material - but to me the film seemed entirely at war with the times. Despite being made in 1998, in 2009 it feels largely irrelevant and dated.

The characters are interesting for an initial 10 mins, but quickly wear thin, offering no way in for the viewer, The film is hard to follow, watch, and ultimately appreciate. Perhaps that is the point??!

WALL-E
WALL-E(2008)
½

Pixar can seemingly do no wrong. Always charming, engaging and visually impressive Wall-E builds on the ever improving (at least in terms of perfection) studo's work. Not only is Wall-E cute and funny it takes a conventional love story - adding an entirely new dimension - in this sense the first sense has that classic, timeless feel to it.

Meanwhile the second act launchs into a highly relevant, if not exagerated commentary on the current state and mind set of the human race.

Wall-E takes the potential for family animation on to a whole new plane.

High School Musical 3: Senior Year

Defying all the laws of science High School Musical 3 is both the most enjoyable and accessible of the franchise so far. The minor annoyances of the previous films are still there in abundance. But the charm and innocence, and spot on performances from the two leads carry it through into the positive.

Step Brothers
½

Proving to remind me just how fed up I am with Will Ferell. and equally not doing much in John C Reilly''s favour either. This is childish, almost amateur film making. It offers the occasional laugh, but really has no place in any self respecting person's film collection. Jenkins what did you get yourself into!!

I'm Not There

Unfortunately I really didn't connect with I'm Not There. The performances and film itself are hard for me to comment on -- because it offers absolutely no way in for the non Bob Dylan fan.

Fast & Furious
½

While Tokyo Drift picked up the pace and was surprisingly inventive the 'New Model, Original Parts' addition slips the series back down into second gear. The plot line with Rodriguez is clearly a mistake despite its initial shock value. While Brewster is given exactly nothing to do, consequently the film lacks much of its original charm and chemistry. The action is good, and Walker and Diesel still have their bromance chemistry - but the rawness and passion is all gone. Honestly your better off watching the original for the millionth time to get your rocks off -- much more effective.

Eden Lake
Eden Lake(2008)
½

Brutal, different, fresh, culturally relevant, and with top notch performances Eden Lake deserves its praise. Yet despite all of the above being both true and abundent I still found the film to be a bit of a one trick pony, and in that sense it dragged and repeated itself a little. A llittle shorter and you may have been left with a genre masterpiece. Fassbender is one to watch for the future.

RocknRolla
RocknRolla(2008)

Against all of my expectations Guy Ritchie delivers a fast paced, enjoyable gangsta romp. The comic timing in RockNRolla is equally surprising with great performances all around.

Slumdog Millionaire

Perhaps the most satisfying thing about Slumdog Millionaire is the fact that it is deserved of its hype and consequently is every bit as good or even better than your expectations. Danny Boyle has proved to be a great, versatile director, injecting his trademark tension, and exceptional soundtracks into every genre going. The camera relishes in the novelty of Mumbai, making use of every opportunity going. The cast do their job well, but in honesty they are not at the center of the films sucesses, its all to do with Boyle'e achievements as a director. The marketing of the film as a movie about a poor kid who wins Who Wants To Be A Millionaire is deceptive - the movie itself surprises you in being more about life in Mumbai than the gameshow -- and in that lies its sucess - a moving, heartfelt success story masked as a social commentary. The contrived nature of the plot does not detract from the truly joyous ending, a warm feeling that will stay with you long after you leave the multiplex.

Gran Torino
Gran Torino(2009)

Yet again Eastwood delivers a vital, engrossing and moving film which you would be forgiven for thinking would be dull and slow. Its not. See it now.

Eastwood seems to have a natural talent to draw out supurb emotive performances, and to really capture the heart and soul of a scene and person on film.

Gran Torino will shock, move and defy oyour expectations.

Equilibrium
Equilibrium(2002)

No matter how hard I try to like Equilibrium, I just can't. On paper it ticks all the right boxes to set my inner geek on fire, instead it's just plain dull. Sure the innovativve fighting style is cool, and Bale's restrained performance is spot on - but the story just lacks that ability to grab you by the balls and excite.

My Little Eye

I've been waiting years to see My Little Eye -- one of the original horror films to experiment with the Big Brother concept -- and I was very dissapointed. The film creates an excellent set up, even builds some useable tension, but ultimately fails to capitalise on it. Its strengths lie in the rawness and the excellently creepy appearance by Bradley Cooper. The ending however leaves much to be desired. Interestingly it would seem that Hostel borrowed a lot from this little seen movie :p

Tropic Thunder
½

As I feared not nearly as funny as people would have you believe, yet it does have its moments. The barrel has really already been scraped to thin in previous films starring Jack Black and Ben Stiller and for that reason they are the least interesting thing on offer here. However the supporting cast is top notch. Downey Jr lets loose and shows a whole other side to him as do the enjoyable cameos from McCaughnhey and Tom Cruise.

The setting and plot is at least inventive and some of the action set pieces are indeed riotous -- but it could have been so much more.

Changeling
Changeling(2008)
½

Clint Eastwood once again proves that he IS the essential director of our time. Changeling manages to take what on paper looks like a boring yarn into an emotional and moving character study. As many critics have pointed out the story of Changeling is rather crowded, with a series of almost contradictory genres taking place within the subplots. However Clint never loses sight of where is leading lady is and her current emotional state. Under his wing Jolie proves that she is competant in almost any role, even if the glove of vulnerable 50s lady doesnt quite fit she pulls it off with honours.

Perhaps the most enjoyable thing about Changeling is its ability to keep you guessing. Its almost impossible to predict where the story is going at any given point of the film. Whats more Eastwood truly engrosses you in the story, with a vested interest in whether or not Jolie's son is alive.

A real homage to old school film making.

Death Race
Death Race(2008)
½

The Stath is oddly watchable is this mercifully short wam bam thank you m'am Speed Racer meets Battle Royale hollow action movie. The attempts to develop interesting character back stories are uninteresting, unneccessary and failed -- but lets face it we are here to watch the hardcore violent racing. Does it deliver on this level? Well it could have gone further and darker, but playing to a broad blockbuster crowd the action sequences will still prove winning and suitably torte and entertaining. Unfortunately its not at all the modern cult classic I had secretly hoped for - better luck next time.

Marley & Me
Marley & Me(2008)

An overly long tale of the life and death of a dog which simultaneously shows a the creation and growth of a family. Marley & Me strengths are also its greatest weaknesses, it is essentially a portrayal of life which has its ups and downs, its fun bits and the annoyingly boring bits. The film shamelessly targets are easy to access heartstrings and goes for the obvious, yet still enjoyable laughs. The leads aren't given much to do, but are competant and believable in their home life if not in their chosen career paths. Marley is clearly the centre of attention and responsible for all of the films successes - yet the problem is - who actually wants to see the events of this film transpire on screen, all in all its rather depressive, shining a mirror back at our own not so interesting afterall lives.

An Inconvenient Truth

Whilst hardly cinematic in any shape or form, Al Gore's Environment film is arguably one of the major drivers behind the current global green push. Despite this the arguements presented here are essentially flawed, unbalanced and incredibly one sided. Basically yes its an important issue, yes the film can be as moving -- but in more competant hands this really could have been a world changing vehicle as opposed to a marginally effective publicity vehicle. But hey at least he is trying,

The Ex
The Ex(2007)

Zach Braff has yet to show range beyond his JD/Garden State persona - and while the EX goes some way to trying, it still falls way back into his comfort zone. Whats more without Braff as the creative force behind the camera, whats created is a distinctly average comedy.

Certain scenes are indeed funny, but they are stretched across derogatory cliched nonsense, while Braff as often happens in Scrubs comes off rather unlikeable.

Whats more the usually dependable Bateman puts in an awful turn -- although lets face it, it probably wasn't his fault.

8MM
8MM(1999)
½

The eternal paradox of Nicholas Cage. Just how is it possible to hate one man so much, yet have to endure him in oh so many bloody films, and worse still actually like the majority of them. Such is the power of the story and mood of 8MM that makes it so compelling. Cage is fine, but its the talent of Schumacher as a film maker that makes 8MM a pleasant surprise. Great villains, great action and little explored themes make for a decent watch.

Desperado
Desperado(1995)
½

A seemingly complete 360 on the tone of El Mariachi, Desperado takes the mood to a march darker, more dangerous place, yet keeps some of the trademark humour that runs through Rodriguez's films. The decision to switch actors to Banderas is at first confusing - but Banderas works to completely dismiss these fears adding a whole new and more accessible character for the intended larger Western audience.

Perhaps not the masterpiece some would have you believe, but still a worthy investment, particularly for Banderas and Rodriguez fans - a chance to see some of their career origins.

El Mariachi
El Mariachi(1993)

Fantastic chance to see Rodriguez's origins as a director - showing where is style and flare comes from. The character of El Mariachi is a sweet and earnest creation, and one who never seems fully in control of his actions and destiny. For this reason the character lacks a certain drive and screen presense. While clearly dated, El Mariachi still ticks along nicely with a strong plot and excellent set pieces. As a whole piece the film is perhaps let down by inexperience - but none the less Rodriguez shows clearly the potential that led him to become one of todays more viceral directors.

The Break-Up
The Break-Up(2006)

A toxic excuse for a romantic comedy - Vince Vaughn has become about as charming as a fly. The support characters are all severly misguided cliches that distract from rather than add to the story.

The saving grace is Jennifer Aniston who puts in a reliable "Rachel" turn. Nothing new to be seen here and lets face it all the best bits were already in the trailer.

The Air I Breathe
½

Ever the Sarah Michelle Gellar enthusiast - i was eagerly awaiting my viewing of The Air I Breathe and was only mildly disappointed.

Its true that the film's intentions and grandeur fail to be translated onto screen - instead leaving a muddled series of tales that seem to fit together merely from direction rather than natural story telling.

But on to the strenghts. Ultimately the promise of this ensemble cast was too good a propsect to pass up on. On individual levels they all succeed, and there are some particularly strong and moving moments, which coupled with some excellent visuals and cinematography really shine. Unfortunately the impact of these moments are diminished by the overall meaning and impact of the film.

Shoot 'Em Up
Shoot 'Em Up(2007)

In this most vile excuse for a movie Clive Owen's one man army must protect a baby whilst being forced by the director to shove his head up his arse and destroy all of the charm that has made Owen so appealing in other roles.

The action pieces are good but lacking in substance, while Owen's regular "angry man" one liners are unconvincing, misguided, and ultimately all fall flat on their face. Worse still is the wasted talents on Bellucci -- begging the question if she can actually act in English?

Avoid.

TMNT
TMNT(2007)
½

While the update to CG isn't entirely welcome, TMNT does serve as a wonderful memory jogger to one of the most beloved cartoons of my childhood. Despite lacking in humour, the plot and the action sequences go along way toward keeping things watchable.

Heres to looking forward to the recently greenlit live action version.

The Mist
The Mist(2007)
½

Horrific, Unnerving, Unsettling, Thrilling or to sumise the best horror film in years that you probably haven't seen. The Mist is a terrific throwback to old style monster movies which actually leave a lasting impact on you, kinda akin to the first time you watched Jurassic Park as a kid, except for adults. Whats more the heart wrenching ending will leave you sick to the stomach, reeling in the glory of the story. A must see for horror fans, and definately one to convert the genre sceptics.

As a side note -- major props to Marcia Gay Harden for creating one of the the annoying, vile character's to ever grace the screen, while remaining wholly necessary to the story.

American Pie 5: The Naked Mile
½

By any measure 'Naked Mile' is much funnier than any DTV movie ought to be. In honesty its no classic, but none the less entertaining and sort of feel good in a cringe worthy kind of way.

The jokes and set ups are far filthier and more improbable than anything that came in American Pie 1 through 3. But they do have this strange endearing quality that makes you forgive its pitfulls. The young males stars come do a particularly good job with what they are given. The major drawbacks are the over reliance on 'little people' jokes, and the fact that considering this is a film based heavily around nudity --> It all has a bit of a PG13 feel to it.

2 Days in Paris
½

Why anyone would like to date Julie Delpy is beyond me. However the flaws of Marion and Jack, and the fact that they are both generally detestable and unlikeable proves to be one of the movies main strengths. There's something oddly engrossing about watching them navigate their relationship and emotional fuck ups. Meanwhile the city of Paris adds a certain charm and humour to the piece, essentially making the subjects palatable.

A personal highlight was the excellently done, genius cameo from Daniel Bruhl.

Turistas (Paradise Lost)
½

The pleasant surprise here was that 'Paradise Lost' isn't a rip off of Turistas, merely an international title switch. This is however the only pleasant surprise.

Despite how I loved the idea of getting to see backpacking get the cinema treatment, unfortunately this element of the story is sadly contrived and too full of cliches to even come close to stomaching. As for the horror side of things - this literally is Hostel does the Jungle. Only without the crazed, creepy European's its even less creepy.

The opening half leading up to the groups discovery that they have been set up is well handled and approaches frigtening. However the plot quickly degnerates into a run of the mill 'escape the murderers' scenario. Duhamel and George are well and truly wasted, Duhamel even approaches intolerable.

The Strangers

In all honesty a major disapointment. Comes off much like 'Vacancy' only taking the more serious approach. The problem with this is that the film's script, depth of characters, and even action fail to support its grand intentions. What remains is an often dull, predictable and uneventful horror. The redeeming quality is that the creepy, uneasy feeling is there, and its strong, but the director fails to build on this.

Watchmen
Watchmen(2009)

Firstly I am writing this as someone who had not read the graphic novel beforehand. Unlike what others have said I didn't feel an accessability problem, however I do think it is important to realise while watching that it does come from a graphic novel, and it sticks rigidly to it. This being said go along for the ride, open your mind and reserve your judgements and you will be in for one hell of a cinematic treat.

Watchmen as a whole for me is a successful attempt to bring a complicated story to screen. Yes it is a little talky and long winded at times, but the brilliant and brutal action scenes, sharp and witty dialogue and fantastic music selections more than make up for it.

Watchmen is dark and serious, although at times ridiculously funny and smug in its own little niche. A comic book movie for grown ups and intellectuals (aka geeks).

As for the giant blue cock, if left out of the movie i'm sure Snyder would have been branded a sell out. As it is it actually goes a long way into getting under the skin of who Dr. Manhatten is as a character. As with all the other cases, despite heavy handedness the characters are well developed, and the acting smart and tongue in cheek. The only character who comes of slightly worse for wear is Ozymandias.

Extra points for the most entertaining and joyous sex scene I have seen in years!

21
21(2008)

21 was a pleasant surprise. Not at all the dull, tedious, self important film I was expecting. Jim Sturgess puts in a particularly good turn as the protagonist. Meanwhile the film maker manages to portray the sense of fun, glamour and temptation which competancy. However where the film fails is in making the scam live up to the infamous story that the film is based on. Never do the proceedings seem quite as 'big' as they should be. As usual Bosworth is bland, but this aside 21 is well worth a watch, just don't expect it to change your life. Fun and light.

Donkey Punch
Donkey Punch(2008)

Not nearly the genius I had hoped for, but still an effective thriller that stays with you longer than most hollyood fair.

The cast is partially effective, with the guys putting in strong credible turns, the girls however are irritating as hell and deserving of everything that happens to them.

The initial set up and 'Donkey Punch' scene are well executed and as dreamy and sun drenched as you could hope for. The paranoia and attempted cover up that follows has its ups and downs. The special effects are largely unsuccessful despite the galiant attempt at a grounded home grown style. For my money the story kills off the characters in the wrong order, keeping the irritating ones alive for far too long. This being said the death scenes themselves are inventive, as is the yacht setting, and the short running time makes up for most of the pitfuls.

All in all a marginally successful breath of fresh air, that thrills rather than scares.

Halloween
Halloween(2007)
½

Almost exactly what you'd expect if you crossed Rob Zombie with John Carpenter. Zombie clearly has a lot of respect for Cerpenter, but is not afraid to inject his trademark gore, brutality and boobage into the film.

The two main criticisms are that Scout Taylor-Compton is no Jamie Lee Curtis, and despite a positive start ends up rather irritating towards the climax, whinpering and whining instead of showing that fight for survival attitude. The other problem isnt a problem if you are a Zombie fan, but my take on Zombie is that he only has two settings - ultimate tension and zero tension, the latter being deathly dull. In other words its like an on/off terror setting and when its off, Zombie doesnt have the chops to deliver engrossing film making.

All in all however the film surprised me, yes it had good source material, and yes its questionable as to whether Myers needed a more developed backstory - but the key thing here is that Zombie delivers a tense, creepy and at times genuinely scary film. A slasher film hasn't been this effective for a long time.

Flashbacks of a Fool

Unfortunately Flashbacks feels much like a racier version of an ITV drama. The acting and premise are good but something falls short in the delivery. Particularly since it is the death of an old friend that triggers Joe's memories, but then all the flashbacks we are treated to all almost all about selfishly about Joe, and not about the two friends. Perhaps this is the point, but still it makes little sense. Emotionally Flashbacks is affecting, but ultimately it lacks spark and drive.

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Or as some have come to know it 'Benjamin Butthole' or 'The Curious Case of the Shopaholic.'

Benjamin Button is by no means a disapointment, however nor is it the film I was expecting. The story is engrossing, touching and above all charming. The special effects are of course outstanding and wholly convincing, and the actors give subtle, accessible and vivid portrayals.

The only problem I had was with the pacing, at times talky the long running time can make you figit a little. Yet the films high points more than compensate. A personal favourite is when Benjamin's life at sea is explored. All in all Old (but young) Benjamin was far more enjoyable than Young (but old) Benjamin, although this makes the ending perhaps all the more bittersweet.

Cellular
Cellular(2004)
½

Firstly this is not the tense, boring thriller that the box would have you believe. It is instead a cheap, proposterous, shiny and hugely enjoyable FUN action movie. If you dont take the movie too seriously, go with the flow and above all dont question the plot or the liberties that the story takes theres a lot of fun to be had. Chris Evans is again on form, witty, charismatic and accessible to the everyday man. Meanwhile the Stath is even tolerable on this occasion. Basinger comes off the worst, but not so much that she spoils the action. Sit back, relax and basque in the ridiculousness. As a side note -- This movie would form the perfect pitch for one of those Orange cinema commericials :)

The Doors
The Doors(1991)

Going into this story without any idea about who The Doors were or what music they made was perhaps not the best idea, but still this is a film with much to offer. Val Kilmer puts out a powerful, commanding performance - one which previously i wouldnt have thought him capable of. Similarly Meg Ryan even manages to not be annoying! I did feel that the film could have done with some fat trimming, as it was a long film, often with unrewarding moments, however when its good its really good. The atmosphere of the concert performances and era is ecclectric and dizzying, perhaps the films greatest achievement.

The Brave One
½

AKA: The Dull One, The Over-The-Hill One or numerous other cheap shot jokes. Granted this wasnt actually as hideous as I had feared, but its still pretty bad. Foster gets equally worse and self righteous as her career progresses. The problem is largely to do with the contrived nature of the plot and the lack of plausable development. The premise is good -women devastated by attack consequently buys a gun - but similar films have done sooo much more. Meanwhile the feminist angle that is presented seems more offensive than progressive.

Lonely Hearts

Whilst its great to see Jared Leto in a chunky role, on this occasion he just doesnt have the presence and command to pull it off. Unfortunately this isnt the movies biggest mistake. In choosing to tell the story from the perspective of Travolta's cop the viewer is left with a bland and emotionless protagonist leaving the viewer out in the cold. The smarter option would have been to tell it from the perspective of Beck and Fernandez, the murderers. Hayek is often put upon to save a movie and in this respect she suceeds, Hayek's portrayal is both dangerous, desperate, sensual and compelling - seriously raising the game of whoever she is sharing the screen with,

Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem (AVP 2)
½

The sequel to the film that should never have been made. The Alien side of the film just doesnt work outside of its Space/Sci-Fi zone. The film is essentially a run of the mill monster on the loose wannabe horror with the Predators thrown in for good measure. The film spends copious amounts of time developing hollow, uninteresting characters and proceeding to do almost nothing with them. Dire, bland, boring, not remoteley thrilling or scary.

This Is England

Visiting this movie post hype has probably worked in its favour. The film is an interesting, real and honest take on life in 80s England, however it is by no means the masterpiece that some claim. The first half of the film centres around Shaun and his new found group of friends, the emotional reasonance is strong and the playful nature compelling to watch. However all niceties are soon removed as the Nationalist story line takes centre stage. Some may find the depiction of British racial issues vital, personally I felt that it took away everything I was previously enjoying. Nevertheless the final portion is affecting and shocking, but i cant help wishing that the movie had gone into a different direction. As a social commentary This Is England merely scratches the surface of more complex issues, fortunately the movie is saved by a stron ensemble cast and a strong break out from its child star.

Step Up 2 the Streets

After the intial disapointment of realising that the lead actress isnt nearly as hot as she looked on the poster you quickly settle down into conventional dance movie/finding yourself/being true to yourself territory. Other movies such as Honey and Coyote Ugly do a better job, but Step Up 2 isnt as horrible as you might expect. The short running time doesnt allow you to get bored, and allows for the forgiving of contrived plots and cliches. The music and dance routines are lively enough warrant extra mention, but to be honest the dancing could have been a little more progressive.

Deception
Deception(2008)

Given the cast of this movie you would be forgiven for expecting great things here. And yes to an extent the cast do deliver good performances, but the weaknesses in the story and direction shine through. Despite a good opening, esentially what you have is a lesser version of an already not perfect movie - Derailed (with Clive Owen and Jennifer Aniston), The movie sells itself with sexuality and the promise of tension, none are evident here in this wasted opportunity.

Lars and the Real Girl

Ryan Gosling again shows his versatility and knack for picking excellent roles in this delightful offbeat dramedy. My favourite scene has to be where Lars presents Bianca, with full conviction, to his family - The blend of shock, comedy and realisation of the extent to Lar's social disorder is fantastically dark and compelling. As the movie progresses you can really get under Lar's skin, and much like the town does you gain a huge amount of sympathy towards the character. The towns reaction is perhaps not the most realistic, but this really doesnt detract from the films core experience. Don't let the plot description fool you, this is a must see.

Douches froides (Cold Showers)
½

A highly sensual, erotic and emotionally charged movie that is somewhat let down by a weak ending. The tension leading up to the inevitable 'climax' is palpable, while the scene itself is well handled and highly justifiable. The actors do a great job, never over acting, keeping things grounded in a sense of reality. The problem comes with the ending, and its lack of explanation of the development. Yes ok its French cinema, and one can expect to be less convenitionally spoon fed than with Hollywood, but still while we understand Mickael's detachment and the isolation he ultimately feels - it seems underdeveloped and almost out of the blue from what had gone on before. Ultimately though, the films successes are greater than its failures, and its worth seeking out this quiet, subtle portrayal of teenage relationships.

The Orphanage

How refreshing it is to see an old school ghost story making waves once again. The Orphanage succeeds in creating a eary, tense and creepy movie without relying on gore and cheap scares. Underlying all of this is a truely saddening and moving story, excellently supported by a fantastic central performance from Rueda. Unfortunately things do occasionally turn a little drab, but the retribution is always only minutes away. A true treat for intelligent horror fans.

Meet the Spartans

Mercifullly short, terribly unfunny. I suppose what sets this apart from successful spoofs is the lack of intelligence or independent story telling. (Also when you have to tell us who you are taking the piss out of, surely that cant be a good sign..) Lets hope Maguire can get some better Hollyowood material in the future..

Death Sentence

A brilliant, bleak and affecting opening is quickly squandered as Bacon tries out his action chops effectively turning the movie into a run of the mill revenge thriller. Think sub-par Man On Fire. The movie clearly has a problem in determining wherever it wants to be an independent film or a hollywood blockbuster, ultimately suceeding at neither. The trick almost ending perhaps at first seemed pointless, as you felt robbed that the story 'ended' so abruptly, but what follows is much worse, making you wish they had decided to call it a day.

Die Hard 2
Die Hard 2(1990)
½

I neither have fond nor vivid memories of the original, however judging the sequel entirely on its own merit -- this is a great, enjoyable if not ageing action movie. McClane exudes much more charisma and charm this time, keeping things ticking along nicely. Moving the setting to an airport seems to make everything that more accessible and tense, although the casual dispatch of a jet load of people feels clumsy and forced, despite its obvious shock value.
It was a great surprise to see Roswell's William Sadler in an early role, and to his credit he does well in living up to Rickman's much more remembered villain, if not ever quite reaching the same levels. The only other negative is that the action pieces often seem overly contrived, jumping from one stunt to the next, however this canno't really be helped as it is a factor of the technology available at the time, proving only to show how far Cinema has come with the recent Bond and Bourne flicks.

He's Just Not That Into You

What could have potentially have been three above average seperate movies all with strong performances turns into a drab, lenghthy excercise in indulgence which results in unprecedented levels of boredom. Most of the film relies solely on already well explored cliches. The film boosts about appealing to both genders, however every single one of the male characters are complete asses -- until the miraculous turn around at the last frame. Some of the characters, particularly Ginnifer Goodwin, are so insufferable that i would have quite happily started to gauge my eyes and eyes out in order to escape. The plus side? a few charming moments and the odd mild laugh, but seriously not worth it! This film is just NOT that good.

Crying Freeman

Tripe! This film has all the subtely and feeling of a cheap porno! As a newby to the series I immediately saw the potential of the story, and the possible opportunities with some of the great set pieces and settings. However this is all largely wasted by a technically incompetant film which leaves you feeling cold and on the outside of the action. Note to film maker: Samurai swords good. Guns Bad.

Miller's Crossing

The more Coen brothers films I see the more confused I get as to whether or not I appreciate them. At the moment I seem to be registering a 50/50 hit miss ratio with Miller's Crossing falling on the miss side. The problem I found with Crossing is, much like other Coen films, it is highly inaccessible. I constantly found myself wondering if I was stupid for not having a clue what was going on half to time (aside from the bare basics of the plot) which in turn makes me angry, leaving a negative impression of the movie. There are some positives however, some beautiful shots and cinematography, particularly out in the crossing while Gabriel Byrne does a lot with his role. But still the overall effect is quite dull with the exception of a few rewarding, torte scenes.

Rambo (Rambo IV)
½

Pales in comparision to the similar, superior Rescue Dawn. The violence on display is purely exploitative and used for shock value. However if a mindless action movie is what you're after then Rambo delivers. While the previous three outings wernt exactly 'intelligent cinema' even they prove to be infinately smarter and as a result more enjoyable.

Nosferatu: Phantom der Nacht (Nosferatu the Vampyre)
½

Whilst i'm usually a Herzog fan, i've decided that he shat all over Stoker's book in all of the wrong places. There is certainly a great air of gloom and creepiness, and the addition of the plague factor is welcome, but the casting is horribel. Granted I didnt get to see the German version, but the cast fail dismally to creat listenable English accents. Meanwhile Harker did nothing for me, and Lucy failed to materialise into her actresses potential. Speaking of Lucy -- the decision to switch the characters of Mina and Lucy seems completely unjustified and is just plain irritating. As to the creation of Dracula himself -- well lets just say its not what I had in mind! He is effective, but is devoid of all the suave and menace that filled the book, instead what we get is a plain and simple creepy monster. I guess it depends on your outlook as to whether this is a success or not.

Bratz: The Movie

High School Musical this ain't! And that's saying something... Something seems to have gone horribly wrong between the pitch and the target audience -- why turn a children's toy into a wannabe high school romp? Thus the film fails to please a more grown up audience, and equally fails to provide fun for the kids. Where it does suceed is largely in the casting of the four leads - they certainly through everything they've got at the roles, and half of them even come out looking like they have some potential. There are a few laughs to be had, but the overall tone brings it down, and by the end you just cant take anymore impromptu miming. One to avoid.

Son of Rambow

A thoroughly enjoyable film full of charm and fun. The films greatest sucess is that you are seeing things from the children's perspective, experiencing fun and adventure in a way that only children can, whilst not alienating its adult audience. In this way it acts as a throwback to youthfulness and fond memories. The first hour or so is particulalry enjoyable, however after this the film does get bogged down in its mechanics, taking the focus of its antics away from the two central boys which proves frustrating. However the emotion that the boys evoke in the finale is so affecting that all flaws are promptly forgiven. Not to be missed, and a true family film, Son of Ranbow presents a realistic take on childhood which isnt spoilt by ideologies and PC characters.

Never Back Down

While not exactly original, Never Back Down is undeniably easy, brainless fun. Despite some poor scripting and paper thin plotting, the leads have some pretty decent charm and chemistry. Sean Faris fares particularly well with what his given, one to watch perhaps? The OC's 'Volchuk' on the other hand can stick to bit parts!

Good Night, And Good Luck

Despite being well put together on almost every level, Good Night And Good Luck fails to deliver sustained interest and intrigue. There are moments where the stakes are high and the story is genuinely intellgent and engrossing, however these are rare. You get the feeling that Clooney very much made a film that he wanted to make, with little regard to mass audiences; while I would normally applaud this approach, on this occasion the films audience is just too niche.

Raising Arizona

Who knew it? A film with Nicolas Cage that not only did I enjoy, but where his performance was the principle thing I enjoyed! He definately needs to stretch his comedic skills more often! The story isn't quite up to the Coen's usual standards, but the writing is sharp, and it has enough charm to get by!

Cars
Cars(2006)

As usual with Pixar they manage to turn a bland, difficult, uninteresting setup and premise into a charming, imaginative and likeable film. The motto? Stop doubting it and trust in the Pixar. True the plot isnt quite as good or imaginative as previous efforts, making the initial 25mins or so quite tough, but go with it and you will be pulled in for a rewarding and satisfying finale that you just cant help but love.

High School Musical 2

It's clear that everyone is having much more fun this time around, and similarly theres much more confidence in their acting. Hudgens comes off particularly well -- managing to make her character much less irritating and almost quite likeable. The downfall here is that the plot is not as fresh as the first time, and gets very grinding and frustrating as Efron gets shit after shit flung at him. But again the charm and forced smiles make it hard to resist.

The Eye
The Eye(2008)

Despite being Jessica Alba's most adult and 'normal' performance to date she seems to lack the competancy to create an opening for the audience to really get inside her character. Consequently we always feel cold and on the outside. As for the film itself it meanders between drab, dull and marginally intriguing. You find yourself wanting the answer to the mystery, but at a much much faster rate. All negativity aside the film turns up the ante for the last 15 minutes, almost, but not quite, making you forget the faults of the rest of the film.

Twilight
Twilight(2008)

First things first - the movie is definately not a patch on the book. This being said I can't quite understand my obsession with all things Twilight, the film being no exception. As each day passes since watching my appreciation for the film grows and grows - so much that I would gladly see it again and again. What makes it so great? Without doubt its the chemistry that the two leads bring to their roles. The scenes in the mid section where they are growing inseparable are beautifully shot and acted with intense passion that you cant help but feel. Furthermore Hardwicke's indie roots shine through on the cinematography and photography. The sets are delicious and the camera lingers in all the right places with a pale tint which only adds to the charm and characterisations. But now for the criticisms and their are many. Stewart at first seemed a little to abraisive to be Bella, but the excellent performance makes you forget this in minutes. As for Pattinson he struggles at first to get to grips with Edwards complexity but after 15mins he fits the role like a perfect glove, so much so that it would be impossible to pciture anyone else playing him. However to knit pick he doesnt quite manage to escalate the angry outbursts to a high enough level (as i imagined from the book). The times when the film irritated me the most was when it veered off track from the book. This may be because the book was so fresh in my mind, but for the most part I failed to see the gains from the changes, meerly seeing instead how the changes made the film story easier to tell. Similarly the whole thing at times seemed a bit rushed with the characters chucking in lines from the book left right and center to get them out there.

Scenes working particularly well included the ball game, the initial car crash and of course the meadow and bedroom scenes (excluding the pathetic attempt at shimmering skin!). On the flipside the introduction of the Cullen family at Edward's house was poorly handled and overtly camp. In fact the casting of the female Cullen's was particularly odd and uninspiring.

So whats the bottom line? I think the best way is to copy what many other critics have said. This film will not do much for those who havent read the book, coming off as distinctly average. The leads are great and what keep it watchable, but the film making and some support cast just aren't competent enough for a film of such high demands. For readers of the book, allow the film to get under your skin, relish in the beauty of Forks and the cast, and find delight in the all to brief references to the book.

I almost wish it had been split into two films or an even longer epic -- allowing the story to breathe more and impregnate viewers' minds.

As for New Moon lets hope the new director can avoid the mistakes he made with The Golden Compass and not let the tight deadline overwhelm him.

Teeth
Teeth(2007)

I guarantee that no guy will be wanting to have sex for at least 24hrs after watching this gore treat. Teeth has its black humour in the right place and the puritanical abstinance themes make for delicious irony. However the lead is so charmless that it lets the film drift on occasion. As for the knobs on the floor - definitely uncomfortable viewing, but in the 'cant help but look' way.

There Will Be Blood

Although There Will Be Blood was not the film I was expecting one can't deny its achievements. Anderson's direction and competence as a film maker are outstanding. Similarly the performances by Daniel Day Lewis and Paul Dano are fantastic, showing restraint, subtlety and power when needed. The negatives -- the pacing is clearly slow, as intended, but this can drain on you at times, particularly with the concentration that it demands. All in all a powerful, intelligent film that has to be seen - but perhaps leave the popcorn in the cupboard.

City Hall
City Hall(1996)
½

Whilst i'm sure there is a great movie experience to be had here it certainly wasn't to my taste. Pacino merely seems to repeat the great performances he has already given us, reducing the effect. Cusack does well and is the heart and soul to the peace, but he cant save the film from being bogged down in drawn out speeches, boring conversations and average action set pieces. What i'm getting at here -- the movie sent me to sleep.

City of Angels
½

And my hatred for Nicolas Cage grows yet again... and perhaps a new found hatred for Meg Ryan is developing. Both protagonists are horrible personifications of some of the worst of our traits. Aside from the unlikeable factor there is a good soundtrack here and some of the shots (although clearly intended to strike a note) are indeed striking. But the emotional bond is unbelievable and seemingly wasted at crucial moments. Even the ending fails in its attempts to unsettle.

Chopper
Chopper(2001)

After spending most of the film repeating to myself over and over 'nah thats no way Eric Bana!' i was eventually pulled into this complicated character. Bana's performance is great and really draws you in to the duality of his persona. Other than this the film suffers a little from pacing, and the bleak brutal tone can sometimes make it inaccessable. But its still refreshing to see a decent effort come out of Australia.

Carlito's Way

Playing out much like a more adult take on a Tarantino movie, Carlto's way is a bleak, violent and well developed story. Pacino's frustrations are superbly conveyed across to the audience. Whilst the film isn't aging so well it does emply a certain visual flare and definately closes with a high degree of emotional resonance.

Bedtime Stories
½

Bedtime Stories certainly made me feel like sleeping afterwards. Theres nothing essentially wrong, and there are some quite funny moments but it all ends up rather flaccid and boring. Performances offer nothing memorable, and the comedy (despite being for kids) is pitched far too low. Essentially the same story just repeats itself 5 times with differing versions of cheap costumes. Without Russell Brand and the infallible Hamster this could easily have been a contender for worst film of the year.

Jumper
Jumper(2008)

Unfortunately as dissapointing as you knew it had to be. The premise was great, as was the promise of the cast, however all fails in the finished product. Performances are wooden - Christenson in particular proofing his critics right - while the story fails to draw you in or engross you. In fact most of the time I spent thinking what a bastard everybody was. Not even Jamie Bell can save the day, even if his scenes do proove to be the only real highlights.

Being John Malkovich

How anybody managed to come up with this concept is beyond me. This strange and surreal film is a real treat, if not a little long. For once the story and actions take center stage over the actors.

Sky High
Sky High(2005)
½

Hopefully the X-Men Academy movie will be the movie I'd hoped to see from this one -- as the potential is definately there. Instead Sky High uses way too much camp humour, particularly with the villains -- yets it does have a certain charm, and their are some laughs to be had - the first 40 odd minutes being particularly amuzing.

High School Musical
½

If you can survive the first ten minutes of squirming, cringing and being begged by all your 5 senses to switch off - i hate to say it - it isn't actually that bad. Sure its full on Disney squeaky clean, but there is a story (however contrived) to tell, and it isn't all about singing and dancing. Efron comes off particularly well and is deserved off the Hollywood break he is getting. Hudgens on the other hand is bland and irritating - her solo being a particular down point. The rest of the cast is either so-so or in the case of the twins downright sickening. However I defy you after having watched the whole thing to have a certain smile creeping over your face during the final number -- however castrated you may feel.

Herbie: Fully Loaded

Initially it all seems a bit too sickening, and just when you are on the verge of switching off Herbie's charm wins you over. Ridiculous and over the top the it is, it still makes for a fun and warm, distinctly Disney movie -- Just not quite the romp the trailer promised.

Oliver Twist
Oliver Twist(2005)

As a virgin to this particular Dicken's tale I found in Polanski's take a welcome entry vehicle to the classic -- showing a true representation of the what the tale has to offer. Where other interpretations have always come across smaltzy, panto-ey and in the case of the musical - sickening - i found myself willing to commit the time to this film. And a cracker it is! The title role is played in an understated, subtle yet fully engrossing way that really puts you into the film's heart. Meanwhile Prague as a setting is suitably dark and dank if not a little clean for London :p Tense, heartwarming, saddening and full of Dicken's magic -- this is an interpretation not to be missed.

Nanny McPhee
Nanny McPhee(2006)
½

Fun warm family fare. But the weak conventional plotting and mediocre writing mean that this film could never hope to punch higher than Sunday afternoon half interested viewing.

Honey
Honey(2003)

Pleasant enough Saturaday afternoon viewing. Alba is watchable in this undemanding role, and sure its a cheesefest but the fuzzy kind as opposed to the cringeworthy. To top it off some genuinely cool dance routines with a lively soundtrack.

Chain Reaction

Bad Bad Bad! Packed full of plot holes, impossibilities and 'why would you do that' moments. All the cast are seemingly on autopilot, not managing to muster an ounce of audience reaction, while the plot and script are equally drab and predictable.

Up in Smoke
Up in Smoke(1978)

What a shocker to see the stoner from That 70s Show playing exactly the same chatacter 30 years ago. Still this is one not to seek out -- its easy to see that many of the ideas for modern stoner comedies from this, however it is lacking a certain edge that would make it truly funny -- perhaps being high would help with this respect - will report back after further investigation.

Futurama: The Beast With a Billion Backs

After reading a fair few negative reviews I was a little apprehensive about watching 'Beast' -- and although I can see where the negativity came from, I still loved every minute of it. Like the first movie it does struggle a bit with pacing, however this time the storyline more than makes up for it, along with some shockingly funny one liners. The best bit? Surely it has to be Yivo -- fantastically characterised, a true joy to watch. Just a wee bit more of Zoidberg and we will be back on track!

Captain Corelli's Mandolin
½

Entirely overrated. I'm sure that the book was wonderful, but the film fails to make the leaps and emotional changes that the characters go through realistic. The biggest problem for me was the irritating and unconvincing accents -- Cage being the person with the most lines and the biggest offender. Why bother?? either go full blown foreign, or ditch all pretense and stay with American accents. There are positives to be found, and most of the cast do do well (particularly Bale and Hurt) but unfortunately the whole package just isnt there.

The Brothers Grimm
½

For the first hour or so I found myself lost in this seemingly inpenetrable film, however once you come to terms with the filmmakers creation and story you can settle in to a lightweight yet entertaining family romp. Ledger in particular delights relishing his role of the blundering fool, Damon is perhaps less comfortable in his guise but none the less watchable.

The Cottage
The Cottage(2008)

Not funny enough to justify its comedic claims, nor scary enough to merit the horror tag. After a shaky first half, a semi-happy medium is reached for the climax, and a real sense of riot and fun is developed. Relish in Jennifer Ellison's dirty, dirty mouth.

Bad Santa
Bad Santa(2003)
½

Not gonna change your life, but a fantastic film to counter all the christmas nostagia. Thornton is a real treat in a glove fit role, while the jokes are as deliciously distasteful as you would hope for. A special mention is deserved for the Mum from Gilmore Girls - 'Fuck Me Santa! Fuck Me Santa! Fuck Me Santa'.

Black Christmas

As much as I wanted this to be a surprise enjoyment - it evidently wasn't! I think the main issue is that no sympathy is built for the characters and there is no tension built up as characters are dispatched in mere seconds without struggle. The result is something that runs more like a snuff film than a horror film.

Rise of the Footsoldier
½

The first half of this film runs much like GTA: Essex would do, and if you can get over the rather unlikeable characterisations its actually pretty enjoyable. Unfortunately the 'Fall' of the footsoldier isnt nearly as enjoyable as the 'Rise'. The result being an overlong, stretched plot which ultimately plays on shock value.

Body of Lies
Body of Lies(2008)

The anticipation of Ridley, Russell and Leo almost had me creating leakages in my pants. The payoff? While granted this is not the match made in heaven uber movie that me and the rest of the world were hoping for. However all is not lost. Scott's direction as usual is astounding, the cinematography parallelled only by the Dark Knight this year. Meanwhile the plot and story is certainly intelligent and engaging however it is so easy to lose attention for a mere second and be temporarily lost for the next five. For a cinematic outing the plot lacks glue, direction and ultimately a payoff, however in terms of a realistic eyeopener to Middle Eastern politics - this is competent and compelling.

Zack and Miri Make a Porno
½

Some genuine laugh out loud moments, ridiculous plot and the entire 'Star Whores' reel is what sets this Kevin Smith movie well into the 'above average' category and sending Smith happily into the mainstream for once. Unfortunately the comedy is drained by its sappy romantic comedy attempts and a dire ending that leaves you feeling raped of everything you have just enjoyed. The memo here is clearly 'Stick to the Porn!'

The Big Lebowski

As perfectly crafted as this Coen's film is -- pefect casting, dialogue, set pieces -- the whole thing, at least in my opinion, came off as boring and unengrossing. The character of the Dude is sublime, and the comic touches great as is the 'going through life without an ounce of control' theme -- but this is not enough to sustain it through its running time.

27 Dresses
27 Dresses(2008)

The pairing of Heigl and Marsden was enough to wet my appetite and send me in the chickflickville, but lets face it they could have done so much more given better material. Their chemistry, charm and comic timing is what makes for an entertaining film, but the script and supporting cast just arent up to the leads' high standards (particularly that irritating fuckwit of a sister -- why would anyone in their right mind choose her over Heigl.) This being said, the film still comes out the right side of the chick flick pile. Sweet, breezy with a comic of genuine great laughs.

Hostel Part II
½

I'm thinking that this film made me realise just how good the first one was -- because this quite frankly is a sorry excuse for a sequel. The main problem here is casting -- two of the three main girls are completly incompetent as actresses and their stereotyping is beyond annoying. Further to this who ever decided to cast two desperate housewives actors to play off one another was sorely mistaken -- I spent most of the film thinking this was a rather shite housewives subplot. The film is at its best when it plays with the 'creepy' Europeans -- but they are sorely underused. Lets face it -- bringing in the Yanks was a tongue in cheek idea, but was never gonna cut the mustard was it!

Flight 93
Flight 93(2005)

A powerhouse of emotion, realism and courage. Two main points of Praise are that the director chooses not to villify the terroists with sterotypes instead allowing them to be judged by their actions - to great effect. Second by choosing perhaps the least remembered event of September 11th and the final event -- the delivery and punch is that much stronger.

EDIT: Oops I noobed up! Mistakingly I thought this was Greengrasses 'United 93' which I hope I havent spoiled by watching this. Still not to take away this films achievements -- still engrossing and moving.

Silk
Silk(2007)
½

I would have thought Pitt incapable of playing such and adult, understated role -- but Pitt owns it -- if never thrilling the performance is always engaging. The same can be said for the film as a whole, interesting yet not exciting. Knightley's character is given little to do -- and for this reason this is not her film. Instead we get setting as the supporting character -- matching the events that Pitt's character goes through and grows into.

The Incredible Hulk
½

I must say not the horrfic mess that I was expecting. Norton's inner turmoil is infectious, subtle and engrossing. This however leads to the main problem - the Scenes with Norton are great, however the 'Hulked Out' scenes still see forced, unrealistic -- serving to take you out of the story and watch from a far. However even with this style of action the final showdown is still a spectacle in its proportions. One side sniggle -- Jennifer Connelly's acting over Liv Tyler's anyday..

Saw V
Saw V(2008)
½

Enough already? I think so. The plot here is such a creative strain that the whole thing reaks of holes -- and frankly doesnt make a lot of sense. In fact the majority of the film seems to go directly against the message that Jigsaw ramned down our throats in the previous four outings (despite equally ramming it down in this chapter). Since Saw 2 the plot hasnt been the memorable part of the experience -- so what of the inventive tortue and death scenes that made the previous films bareable? Well honestly they are mundane and unexciting -- in fact the best thrills come from flashbacks to previous films' traps -- creating a longing for something better! Characterisation is perhaps the films one saving grace, Julie Benz and her 3 other tortue buddies pull off no mean feat in keeping things exciting even when diminshed by the constant talky scenes featuring the bland surposed main characters.

Quantum of Solace

A Bond for the 21st Century -- As far as i'm concerned Craig is now the only Bond. This film has recieved much criticism -- yet I understand none of it. Yes gone is the cheese and shinyness that was the Brosnan era, but in its place is a more more Connery/original Fleming feel. Granted this is not a particularly happy movie -- but this does not mean it is bad. The action is formidable, packing one hell of a punch and the acting is top notch. The transformation that you see Bond go through is a necessity as it shows where Bond's character comes from and how he became the kind of man that he is in later movies. As for Greene -- yes he lacks a certain presence -- but in my opinion that makes him all the more menacing. Oh and special props for Artertons short yet memorable plot.

Evan Almighty

Sweet, warm family fun. Yet the negative is that this is a comedy totally lacking in any edge. Yes its inoffensive and charmig -- but this just doesn't go far enough. Also the end plot revelation just totally negates the whole plot -- afterall what was the point of all those animals?! Maybe im just a sadist -- but i would have quite like to have seen the entire planet flooded out with Evan riding on his high 'wave'.

Beerfest
Beerfest(2006)

Unbedingt ScheiÃ?e. Everything about this film is distasteful and the stereotypcal rascism ventures far into annoying. That being said there is a certain charm and a few laughs that merit the 1 star -- put dangerously into question by the overlong running time.

Pathology
Pathology(2008)

For the first half a genuine mood of unease and creepyness is developed which ultimately goes to waste in the ridiculous second half. Ventimiglia when good is great, but his skills aren't enough to carry the film -- which ultimately is whats asked of him. Milano is sorely underused -- would have seen her swapped witht he bland Lauren Lee Smith anyday.

Blow
Blow(2001)

Fascinating and gently paced. Its so refreshing to see Depp in a modern (well modernish) role without the aid of white face make up. Depp in a fine turn really makes you feel for his character -- especially after his repeated fuck ups and naivety of his will to change, and his all out trust in others. Cruz is ridiculously overbilled -- but thats a small criticism. The scene where Depp goes to meet Pablo Escobar for the first time must rate up there with one of the most tense movie scenes in history -- making his fish out of water victory even more remarkable.

Starship Troopers 3: Marauder

Runs sort of like a cheap version of BSG, or perhaps worse a cheap SG-1. The being said there are some enjoyable moments in what really feels like a throwback to the original. Scenes without Van Dien do kind of fall a little flat as does the ropey CGI. However the setting and cheap and cheerful action and plot do make for a fun time! Shame about the piffle 'Religion' ending...

Doomsday
Doomsday(2008)
½

Normally a multi genre piece is a fantastic asset making for a fully engrossing epic (Aka Buffy and to a lesser extent Marshall's previous works) however on this occasion it feels like Doomsday doesnt quite know what it wants to be -- and as a result a mixed back follows. The effects and set pieces are no doubt cool, and much effort is evident. Meanwhile the story, scripting and characterisation seems to have gone on a back burner. Plus im sorry but post apocalyptic Scottish cannibal punks were not the way to go... Neither was Frankie Goes To Hollywood -- just plan uncool.

All the Boys Love Mandy Lane
½

I felt like such an idiot for not seeing the 'twist' coming a mile off. While the stlye and cinematography are certainly noteworthy -- modern day Texas painted as rustic and stylistic -- Unfortunately the plot and script dont match up to this. Largely uneventful and dull with the odd streak of excitement.

Funny Games
Funny Games(2008)
½

Corbet and Pitt are genius casting choices and while throughout most of the film they only manage to pull off 'creepy' the final shot is truly a terrifying and unsettling image -- worthy of an extra star alone. As for the rest of the film I did enjoy the lack of plot convention, and really felt the effect of having the victoms believe that the worst of it was over. However this doesnt stop the film beginning to coast at this very moment. Overall an unsettling film which refuses to glamorise the subject of torture and murder -- really driving home the victims realistic and understated performances. I'm looking forward to catching the original.

Rendition
Rendition(2007)
½

In all honesty rather boring. Whats more Gyllenhaal's change of heart is mildy implausable. The plot on paper is interesting enough and the direction is adequate but allows for too much down time and meandering.

Mirrors
Mirrors(2008)

While the ghost story doesnt seem to work when set in the Western world -- there are some good moments to be had here. If you can contend with the drab opening half with a downright lazy attempt to build tension and suspense in the department store, the film does indead pick up particularly in the rare scene without Kiefer (who is sorely a fish out of water). Indeed most of the films best moments come from the effort Patton puts in to her performance. Plus an excellent scene offing Amy Smart will definately wake you up. Its a shame then to go through so much effort rescuing the movie to have it all ruined in the last 10 minutes. The finale serves to ruin the tension created in the last scene in the house, and becomes often laughable. As for the 'shock ending' whilst yes it looks cool -- care to give an explanation as to why??! its happening... Aja needs to go back to France and work on what made Haute Tension (Switchblade Romance) so intriguing.

Burn After Reading
½

Perhaps almost too clever for its own good. The film is expertly made and put together, the acting is faultless -- however something just didnt connect this time! That being said there are some performances and scenes to die for. Malkovich and Pitt stand out the most -- and in essence are what carries the movie, so forgive me for being pissed off come the mid point!

The Isle
The Isle(2000)
½

I can't help wishing that this had been a short. The style, the music, the setting and the story all work well -- but the meandering pace just goes on for too long (bear in mind the film is already a short 88 mins long) Despite the depression, violence and near sadism the whole thing does come off as surprisingly sweet.

Sex and the City

The film version of the show seems to incorporate much of what made the show popular and catches the sentiment, however it all seems a bit force fed, and the cheese factor is alarmingly too high in moments. The addition of Hudson is both unnecessary and contradictory to the show. A further criticism is the length which verges on boredom -- the show was always concise enough to forgive its girliness. It all feels like the rough draft to a season 7 - a whole year passes -- but it doesnt really feel that way. The acting and production is there, but one has to ask if a movie was really necessary and well utilised -- perhaps another season was in order?

28 Weeks Later...

A bleak stylistic massacre. This is heavy stuff. Like the original 28 Weeks Later knows how to pack a punch and knows how to make itself stand out from the ground. With some truely astounding scenes including the fantastic opener and a thumping, moving soundtrack -- this is one not to miss for horror fans and crossovers alike. Granted the film sometimes loses its way -- but the pick up is never too far away. Even the choice of centering the film on two children seems to be a winner -- and lets be honest how often does that idea pay off?

[Rec]
[Rec](2007)
½

While the movie took its sweet time in getting a hold of my attention, by the end I was practically crapping myself and was indeed hooked. Rec is a refreshing take on a tired genre, but the whole scenario did seem wholly implausible write up until the end where the movie partially justifies itself. One further quibble is that i would have liked to have seen the firemen in reverse roles. Oh yes and i am in no doubt that the upcoming Hollywood remake 'Quarantine' will be terrible.

Creep
Creep(2005)

There is a certain amount of inate creepiness about this films concept of being trapped down in the underground overnight. This being said, plot leaps, bad dialogue, and ridiculous 'why would you do that?' moments do seem to spoil proceedings. The film does have its moments, particularly towards the end (doctor backstory excluded) and Potente does suceed in having you root for her by the last reel (takes her far too long to achieve this though). All in all a sub-par horror effort.

Rocky Balboa
Rocky Balboa(2006)
½

A surprising treat. Rocky final outing is not without its cheese and 'rocky' dialogue, however Stallone plays his character like a dream in a role that he was seemingly born to play at his age. The decision to make this more of a character driven story as opposed to fight based pays off -- converting even a cynic like me to Rocky's cause.

Children of Glory
½

Not the film I was expecting, but none the less engrossing. Most of the action takes place outside of Water Polo, but solid characterisation and real life tragedy ensures that the film doesnt go off the rails. A fascinating step into a little discussed area of WWII history.

Cloverfield
Cloverfield(2008)

After a shaky start to the crisis -- no pun intended -- tension picks up to unbearable levels as the characters realise severity of their situation. One unfortunate is that the camera man is as irritating as shit, but in compensation I think this adds to the believability of the continued filming. The filming idea in itself breaks convention and others an alternate perspective away from the usual put upon scientist/milatary operation. Some truely stunning set pieces, and true fear inducing, terroising moments help to bring this film in above practically every other disaster movie ever made -- pushing the genre forwards into a new generation.

Rush Hour 3
Rush Hour 3(2007)
½

Derivative, contrived, borderline racist and devoid of any of the chemistry and charm that made the pairing of the leads entertaining (were they really?) in the first two films. There is barely anything positive to remark about this film, even the finale atop of the eiffel tower seems like a wasted opportunity. Chris Rock is most definately past his sell by date.

w Delta z
w Delta z(2006)
½

This is a movie that the Saw sequels should aspire to. The characters may not be as interesting as they could me, but the murders and motives certainly intrigue. Selma Blair is a surprising yet successful choice, if a little underused. The problem is that towards the end things get a little jumbled and sufficient explanation is not offered to save it from being derivative.

Akira
Akira(1988)

Whilst certainly epic - i must admit it did take me several sittings to get through -- Akira is a thoroughly enjoyable, interesting and exciting film, so much more than your average Manga, in fact at times you almost forget that you are watching animation -- rumours of a live action remake are certainly understandable. The one flaw here is that the plot is not fully explained, nor is justice given to the new 'Neo-Tokyo'.

Dirty Sanchez: The Movie

Dirty Sanchez is truly what 'Jackass' wanted to be but couldn't. The show has always been cringe worthy, fun and over all entertaining. While this big screen venture doesn't necessarily make full use of cinematic potential it does however deliver. Some truly cringe worthy moments interchanged with a true display of camradery. A superior stunt movie packed with pain, blood, welsh accents, and yes a fair amount of cock!

Black Mask
Black Mask(1997)
½

While the dubbing is reminiscent of Eurotrash (only without the Boobs) the action and story is actually rather good. Unfortunately i was unable to overcome the dubbing (the dvd not offering a cantonese option) and everything just ended up being cheesy, spoiling what would have been solid B-Movie action fare -- As if Hollywoods advancements in the last 30 years never existed :)

Pineapple Express
½

While by no means perfect (getting a little slow in places) when the comedy does come, its comes hard. Meanwhile Franco is a revelation -- garnering the majority of the big laughs --who knew -- definately a guy to watch. A funny, enjoyable romp with genuine charisma -- not too taxing on the brain, but who said it had to be.

Awake
Awake(2007)

The premise was good, but something definately got lost along the way. As I was watching I couldn't work out whether it would be worse watching Jessica Alba slowly deduce whats happening to her husband and figure out a solution or the equally painful and implausable 'twist'. Alba's worst performance to date, but i sense more a product of the script, as Lena Olin is commendable as usual, but on many occasions her lines fall utterly flat due to the horrific script. Meanwhile Chirstensen fares a little better, doing nothing wrong, but not much right either. A better supporting cast and better characterisation may have saved the day, but as it stands what we are left with is a sub-par thriller which relies thoroughly on the beauty of its leads.

The Benchwarmers
½

Apparently i'm on my own in loving this film, I found it both funny and smile inducing. The only major fault is the contrived and overly simple plot routine that the film treads through.

Sharkwater
Sharkwater(2007)

Needless to say slightly biased, but maybe in a good way. A very interesting documentary, which at times is excruciating to watch. The shots filmed are simply beautiful, enough to justify the films stark message. My only dig? missing shots of him hugging great whites.... yeah

Gone Baby Gone
½

Casey Affleck carries this movie and along with its direction and shots is what pulls this one up on the above average side. I felt that the movie had peaked after the quarry scene, and felt that this could have been an appropriate ending. After at first resenting the films continuation I was eventually won over by the final 10 mins. Moving and understated.

What Happens in Vegas

Instantly forgetable, but mild fun while it lasts.

The Visitor
The Visitor(2008)

A quiet, moving, heart warming affair. The political message can sometimes be a little overbearing, but all in all well worth your time.

Iron Man
Iron Man(2008)
½

Downey Jr. creates a fun, human and interesting superhero in the form of Iron Man. The movies action sequences dont quite match the demands of the film, but the creation of the suit segment and test flights certainly do justice. Paltrow did a surprisingly good turn, completely out of type cast.

Kung Fu Panda
½

The film has a shaky and weak start, and almost everything about the plot you have seen a million times before. However the fight scene animation is sublime, refreshing and engrossing. Totally makes it all worth it.

The Midnight Meat Train

There are many thorns in this films side - but the most catastrophic is the casting of Jones as the silent murderer. It may just be because i'm British - but he just doesnt carry that kind of presence and malice (especially after seeing Mean Machine). This being said Cooper does well, as does the source material and premise. All the effect built is somewhat ruined by the bland and boring death scenes. The end of the movie is somewhat double edged, of course you saw half of the revelation coming a mile off, but the introduction of the mythical timeless creatures that need feeding is surely an interesting premise that could have spanned the whole movie and not just the last 2 mins??! Turn it on its head and this could have been one of the best horror movies of the year. As it stands its a bland, meandering thriller with untapped potential. One last thing -- When movieing in Singapore apparently its ok for a bimbo to ring somebody in the middle of a horror film to let them know that they are 'Really Scared lah!' What a bint...

The Dark Knight
½

An epic movie totally worthy of the extended wait I had to go through and the many begs i had to extend to my friends to come with me (WHY?) Bale and Ledger (the whole cast really) shine, creating complex and most importantly interesting characters. The Joker is both disturbing, yey human - a triumph for Nolan and Ledger. However the movie is not without fault - slightly too long for its intent (although this is in some way also a strength) and the shaky Batman into is unclear and frankly dull. Speaking of which some of the technical, explanatory dialogue and plot leeps ask alot, but go with it and you will be satisfied. The major revelation for me is Gyllenhaal who rescues the character of Rachel and actually makes her 3 dimensional and likeable -- shame really...

The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian
½

A far superior vehicle to the LW&W -- yet it still feels much like i'm watching a sub par Two Towers effort, particularly during the battle scences. Would have perhaps liked to have seen more characterisation for Caspian, but Barnes proves that he is a rising star with much potential. Oh and hurray for the rats! and screw China Airways for cutting me off with only 5 mins to go!

My Super Ex-Girlfriend
½

Camp, ridiculous and completely disaposable -- yet there is something that had me playing along if only for the 90mins running time before I snapped back to reality. A pleasant trip. (But come on Luke we all know you can do better!)

Dr. Seuss' Horton Hears a Who!
½

While not a perfect movie, the story and characters are undeniably charming and warm. There is something about Dr. Suess and Jim Carrey together that gets me everytime!

I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry
½

Bollocks springs to mind, but i must admit this is not the complete throwaway that I had imagined. By all means dont pay to see this 'entertainment' but if you stumble across it this autopilot movie will surely pass the time.

Over Her Dead Body

Some charming moments, but sadly disapointing.

Fool's Gold
Fool's Gold(2008)

Mildly entertaining nonsense. Perfect airplane movie as any.

Chaos Theory
Chaos Theory(2008)
½

Another solid Reynolds effort. The problem is that the movie overcomplicates itself, and gets lost within itself.

Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit

Hardly classic Wallace and Gromit, but entertains none the less, and yes the rabbits are cute...

Wanted
Wanted(2008)

Long have I been waiting for the next film to make me grin ear to ear with sheer delight. The levels of "coolness" on offer in this film are on crack. Unfortunately the screenplay has its weaknesses, but none enough to counter the coolness factor! McAvoy goes through a great transformation, even if he does get a little irritating during his training :p Meanwhile Jolie's screen presence is like nothing i've ever seen, this commanding role was seemingly built for her. All in all not without fault, would have like to have seen it a little "grittier" but nonetheless a damn good effort!

Enchanted
Enchanted(2007)

A little too much sugar here, and a ridiculously neat ending make it just a little unacessable to me, although it came pretty damn close to hitting the right note with some exceptional standout moments particularly scenes with the ever impressive Marsden. WTB: Squeaking Chipmunk

Ned Kelly
Ned Kelly(2003)
½

The film is very much contingent on Ledger's powerful performance and strong screen presence, which keeps the film afloat throughout. Not an easy watch, but a moving thoughtful finale makes it worth the bother. Extra points for the monkey scene!

Rescue Dawn
Rescue Dawn(2007)

Shot mostly like a documentary (rightly so given Herzog's recent catalog) which means that at times the film lacks a certain cinematic power. Bale manages to get under his characters skin and delivers an understated performance. The finale is both cheesy and over the top, yet remarkably endearing and affecting. Its a slow one, but definately worth a look.

Hancock
Hancock(2008)

Hmm unfortunately not the film that I so hoped for. None the less it is still enjoyable box office fair. It reeks of unused potential and contrived 'wow i didnt see that one coming' moments. I think I would have much preferred to have seen the original 'R rated' concept get the go ahead (a problem with so many superhero movies is that they just dont work on the family level (hurray for Sin City)) I read somewhere that the marketing campaign misrepresented this movie as a kids affair, needless to say the language sharply disregards this and will no doubt offend some, further cementing the fact that this is not the movie it should have been. Smith however does well, and the box office figures no doubt will mean many more 'showy' Will Smith vehicles to come, just without the heart and sould of his earlier films.

The Other Boleyn Girl
½

A slow and droopy start is more than made up for as the film catches its stirde by the mid way point. By the final reel tension and emotion are at formidable highs as Portman does her very best to pull out a worthy performance out of the horrific script. You cant help feel that the story was focusing on the wrong sibling for the most part of the movie - - as frankly I found myself not giving much of a damn about Mary for the majority. The only other downsides are that Bana was criminally underused, and that this movie has done nothing to change my opinion that Johansson is greatly overrated.

Michael Clayton

The problem here is that the plot is overly complicated and too wrapped up it itself. Having said this it remains compelling, and you can just about stay afloat even if you aren't following everything. The climax makes the previous 1h45 all the more worth it -- we get to see just why Swinton was deserving of that Oscar (even if it perhaps should have been a best supporting actress nod rather than lead).

Analyze This
Analyze This(1999)
½

I went into this one with no expectations other than the fact I knew it was well loved. Needless to say this is with good reason. Yes it is ridiculous, campy and cliched - however its hard not to enjoy this romp. The dynamic between the two leads is clearly the driving force behind the film, along with some of the snappy dialogue.

Into the Wild

A moving quiet tale of one mans journey to tragic self realisation. The relationships he develops along the way are truly heartwarming and excellently directed. The finale is truly heartbreaking, yet none the less rewarding. Aside from that the soundtrack and cinematography/landscapes make it well worth accompanying Hirsch on his journey.

Blood Diamond
½

Something about films based on Africa really gets under my skin. I loved every second of this heart wrenching, if not overly contrived thriller. It really gets the heart racing, and the two leads pull off fantastic performances.

Good Luck Chuck

I really wanted to like this, but kind of knew that it would be complete rubbish. It does have a certain amount of charm to it, but is clearly lacking in excitment, with a plot that fails to generate enough interest for feature length.

Mrs. Henderson Presents
½

Thoughtful enough but rather blandly delivered. Starts out as promisingly as a lightweight romp, but drifts off into nothingness as the movie develops. Strictly afternoon tea viewing (if it wernt for the todgers and boobies..)

Once
Once(2007)
½

I had mixed expectations of this one, but i knew i had to see it. Needless to say it neither confirmed my fears nor my hopes. The film meanders slowly and pointlessly much like the lives of the two leads. The seaving grace is the charm of the two leads, and the music that they play. Its a genuine film grounded in everyday life. Also serves to show that perhaps Dublin is not as bad as i fear :p

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

This is very much what happens if you combine all of my favourite elements of the original 3 films, and transfer the setting to my favourite continent. On paper and on film this all sounds and looks great. The traditional Indy atmosphere and tone remains, the actions is highly entertaining as are the character dyanamics. LaBeouf is a welcome addition, increasing my love for his fresh acting, whilst it is great to see Allen return for a much more screen time this time around. Cheese is abound, as is the ever excruciating 'as if that would happen' moments, but hey its all in the fun of an Indy movie. The only negative here is the climax, it all gets a bit much for me, and seemingly doesnt quite fit in with the rest of the movie. Nethertheless a welcome and enjoyable return!

The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
½

A truely interesting story that is somewhat ruined by the pacing. None the less great performances, particularly Affleck, and some truly stunning cinematography. In this case patience is a virtue which pays off.

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
½

Great source material ruined by all the singing.. the songs just wernt interesting and went on for far too long. Other than that good performances and a shooting style that was much better than i had feared. Loses major points for cutting Anthoney Heads role!

The Nines
The Nines(2007)

One of those films with a great premise, intriguing plot development and great characters and acting, but still manages to be boring at times. Overall the strengths are greater than the weaknesses, and its a guarenteed thought provoker, just perhaps not as exciting as climatic as it could have been. The videogame addiction and God complex metaphor gave the movie added accessibility for me given my World of Warcraft glory days :D Reynolds and McCarthy give amazing performances, particularly in Part 1.

Kidulthood
Kidulthood(2008)
½

This is certainly no Larry Clark movie, and meanders too much for its running time. Some good examples of characterisation, but ultimately the plot wastes this. This movie has ideas above its station, but is however socially ept.

Scent of a Woman
½

Much like Pacino's character this film is over the top, and at times ridiculous, but its heart and soul is clearly firmly in the right place. Despite its extravegence it ticks all the right boxes, and tugs at the strings. Although if anything, I could have stood to lose the whole high school dilemma metaphor that runs throughout, particularly the 'courtroom' farce at the end. However the key thing to take out of this is the two powerhouse performances, the charm and the heart.

Paranoid Park
½

The style and structure is at first intriguing and innovative, but it loses some of its punch toward the end. The story and ending is more subtle than it appears on the outside, which may put some people off, but all in all this is a good break down of the mind of young teen dealing with a traumatic experience. The kid playing Alex underplays his role to maximum effect almost making it seem real.

The Princess Bride

A Warm and spirited retelling of the book. Ultimately the book fairs better in creating an epic tone, but the movie's comic, almost camp charm is a treat.

Stardust
Stardust(2007)
½

A film with fantastic highs which ultimately gets brought its overly long, patchy plot. Never quite reaches the realms of boredom, but irritating Pfeiffer certainly doesnt help matters. The 'throwback' tone, witty dialogue, wonderful set pieces and strong central characters go a long way to make up for this, yet i'd still take the Princess Bride over this anyday. I'm eagerly anticipating Charlie Cox's next role.

Pride and Prejudice

This is my first exposure to the novel, in fact any Jane Austen novel. A pleasant surprise was how accessible the movie was, and not as horrifcally feminine as I had feared. Wright does a stunning job of capturing a beautiful English countryside fast fading. Weather shots seems to be his forté, capturing sun drenched, deep mist and beautiful rain shots. Knightley is excellent showing versitility from her other roles and giving a more suble performance. The U.S. ending does how ever suck balls! Give the Americans some credit please! On a final note, the scene in the rain with Knightley and Darcy is one of the most accomplished film shots i have seen for a long time.

National Treasure
½

I tried very hard to dislike this, but eventually was semi-won over. Plot holes are vast and incredible. whilst Nic Cage exudes as much charm as a wet fish. Kruger and Bartha are able to rectify this somewhat. Up until the midpoint the action sets keep you interested, but things get a little tired after this, the film ultimately decides to ditch Sean Bean, but by this point its too late to salvage. Unoriginal and only midly entertaining, does serve as a lovely history reminder particularly in the vain of 'Where on Earth is Carman Sandiego'

Jesus Camp
Jesus Camp(2006)

What makes this disturbing as the creepy lady thankfully points out is that I just dont get it. Part of me wonders if I am missing a trick, but my rational side sees indoctrination and kids that were not given much of a choice in life. Quite frankly the idea of creating a radical Christian nation with people ready to die for Jesus is one which i can do without. The people protrayed would appear to do society more harm than good given the chance. From a documentary's perspective I believe I saw a cut version, which did seem to put out a biased viewpoint, although it did offer no personal critique and left the viewer to make up its own mind over what they were seeing. I would like to watch the complete cut, but I just dont think i can bear to sit throught it again.

Hallam Foe (Mister Foe)
½

Wildly different to what I was expecting. Another top notch, intriguing and unique performance from Jamie Bell (fast proving to be one of my favourite actors) and a surprisingly solid turn from the female lead. I think this films strongest element is that it offers a new perspective.

Forgetting Sarah Marshall
½

Granted i did kinda have pretty high expectations for this one! Knocked up and Superbad are tough vehicles to follow, and combine that with two of televisions finest Kristen Bell and Mila Kunis; salavation is immenent. The result is a very funny film, that is unfortuantely too long for its own good. Lengthy gaps between the truely funny moments, dampen impact, but ultimately you leave with a smile on your face.

Futurama: Bender's Big Score
½

Oh Futurama how i've missed you so! Its great to have the show back, and the jokes are indeed present in this movie version, but I get the impression that when this is later broken down into the four episodes it will run a lot better. Im used to watching multiple episodes at a time, but for some reason without the title breaks and mini conclusions it did seem to drag a bit too long. Also more Zoidberg next time please! Roll on the beast of a million backs!

La Vie en Rose (La Mome)

Both uplifting and heartbreaking. Cotillard is phenomenal, really making you feel her pain even if you cant really emphasise. The performance is central to the theme, as Piaf's troubled yet colouful youth is central to her character. The only evident flaw of the film is the somewhat muddled time periods of Piaf's life. While this is wholly intentional, the style sometimes can disrupt the flow, and confuse certain supporting characters' roles. The revlelation close to the end is also somewhat confusing. Despite this the film serves as a suitable memoire to the star, a powerful story which introduced me to some wonderful music. The final performance is so emotionally charged it will leave you breathless.

Naruto the Movie: Ninja Clash in the Land of Snow (Gekijô-ban Naruto: Daikatsugeki!)
½

Not a patch on the TV series, but still fun enough to watch. The superior animation makes for an interesting change. I have given an extra star for the fantastically funny bonus feature (the sports competition).

The Lookout
The Lookout(2007)
½

Gordon-Levitt is the saving grace of this one. As usual he aces his role, creating intrigue and vulnerability. The rest of the film however is standard fare, minimal characterisation, and an overstatement of 'artistic merit'.

Big Fish
Big Fish(2003)
½

Sometimes sluggish, but overall this is an imaginative and likeable story. McGregor makes a welcome break from Deppdom -- although Burton's direction is evident.

Shine
Shine(1996)

Tragically overlooked as a teenage boy, this is an engrossing tale dealing with the downside to supreme talent and tackling the complicated father-son relationship at levels of the highest extreme. A real treat.

Tim Burton's Corpse Bride
½

Very sweet and quirky. Not much substance, but works on the simple level it presents itself on -- a romantic fairy tale of sorts.

Street Kings
Street Kings(2008)

A pure popcorn flick, very entertaining and loads of action. Offers little new to the genre, and will be quickly forgotten (doesnt mean i didnt have fun!)

The Brood
The Brood(1979)
½

Definately not the Cronenberg i have grown to no and love, although you can clearly see hints of his work to come. Some good moments and a redeeming ending make up for some of the more lacklustre moments.

Lie with Me
Lie with Me(2005)

The protagonist is a likebale as a piss stain, which really doesnt help the flimsy plot. Has the sex scenes been more pertinent, sensual or point worthy this may have made up for it, but alas no! If you are going to make a movie about a sexual encounter, for the love of god give us some interesting people to watch!

Hellboy
Hellboy(2004)

Theres a bit of a yawn factor present, but Hellboy as a protagonist is likeable enough to keep things going. Didn't care much for the plot or the slimey monster things. To be frank im surprised a sequel is coming, but I trust Del Toro so il go with it.

Paris Je T'aime

There are some really charming gems to be found in this collection, but unfortunately I found some of the segments to be dull and detracting. Ironically some of the segments I enjoyed most reminded me of the cheesy french videos I used to watch in school :p Ultimately the strengths make up for the flaws, and the concluding section leaves you with a sense of warmth and satisfaction.

Superbad
Superbad(2007)

Man Love FTW :p Michael Cera is a genius,

Déjà Vu
Déjà Vu(2006)

Standard action shodder fare with a bit of sci-fi thrown in for good measure. Plot is a little patchy, Denzel saves the day with his usual performance -- can't help wishing he would offer a little more diversity in his role choices.

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade

Who would have thought that I could actually enjoy a Sean Connery performance outside of James Bond! The father son relationship is a real treat, as are the action set pieces,the descent from the blip a highlight. Better than the first, although I still prefer the 2nd - all in all the trilogy is well deserving of its status, although it fails to steal the place in my heart of that other Lucas 70s/80s trilogy!

Highlander
Highlander(1986)
½

Undeniably dated however still a blast. Excellent story with some great cinematography. Queen fits better than I had feared, and Connery's part is just the right size that makes it bearable.

Running With Scissors
½

Part of you wants to hate this movie, and part of you will find it inane and dull. However somewhere along the line it develops a charm that pulls you in and keeps you going.

Control
Control(2007)

Impressive film, Riley really draws you in and convinces. My only complaint is that since the book was written by his wife it feels a little bit like a bitter tale of neglect to her, and the actress who portrays his wife really pushes this which is somewhat distracting and irritating.

Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom

A far superior vehicle to the original although i get the feeling i'm alone on that one! Lots of corny fun to be had, and its nice to finally get to see so many iconic moments that have forever been used in action movies since. The plot and scripting were much smarter than the originals somewhat incoherent affair. Orginally i found myself hating the blonde chick wishing for this movie with the chick from the first one, however she somewhat grew on me and i realised that I found her endearing simply because it is like going on holiday with El!

Atonement
Atonement(2007)

5 star first half, and 5 star ending, however gets a little lost in the middle after Robbie gets arrested. Loved the use of the typewriter in the score and Ronan's unbeknowing bitch was a treat. Overall this is a moving and impactful movie, however not as heart wrenching as perhaps i like to see. (yes i am indeed a sadist) Original ending for the win!

Raiders of the Lost Ark

So i finally get around to seeing an Indiana Jones movie - with pretty high expectations. the verdict? Its a fun romp, but i felt some what disapointed. The action is great and very spirited, however i was hoping for a lot more characterisation, and perhaps its just me but plot didnt seem to be on the makers top priority list. {Insert cliff edge here} {You know what would be cool? FIRE} Despite this much fun to be had, and trust me when I say that this review was going to be a lot harsher until I proceeded to watch White Noise directly afterwards and thus learning what is a bad movie and what is not! I look forward to watching the remaining films in the series.

White Noise
White Noise(2005)

I thought this movie would never end! absolutely dire! I feel like it is the studios fault. What had been developed was a slow burning mystical thriller and then the studio turned round and said 'you know this would work much better as a horror movie, just like add in a few people screaming loudly and have faces pop up on the screen every now and again for no apparent reason, sounds AWESOME'

Sherrybaby
Sherrybaby(2006)
½

Gyllenhaul really makes this a movie worth a look. Successfully portraying a character who draws our sympathies yet at the same time scares us and makes us gringe. We want her to be the movie she wants to be, but at the same time wonder if she is really ready.

Hairspray
Hairspray(2007)

A little too fluffy for me! However personal taste aside this is a good, warm, happy film full of 'flare' 20 or so minutes in and i was liking it -- shortly afterward i overdosed. As a side note, the song 'I Can Hear The Bells' is up there with the best musical songs i have heard to date.

Definitely, Maybe
½

Not sure why this wasn't a bigger success. As a rom-com its a little too light on the com for my liking, however the captivating story, and excellent cast more than makes up for it. Perhaps a little long. P.S Isla Fisher is HoT.

The Client
The Client(1994)
½

One of my favourite films of all time. Loved it as a kid, love it as an adult. The story of a young kid with the weight of the world on his shoulders, and his saviour Sarandon. Renfro's performance showed promise and Sarandon was spot on showing vulnerability with a tough outta shell. Engaging stuff!

Cursed
Cursed(2005)

Caught this one a little way in on the tele. Some good parts, a lot of bad parts. Real bad work on the wolf design :p Ricci and the cast do well (excluding Jackson and the pyscho bitch)

Resident Evil: Extinction

I don't feel that this installment added anything useful to the table. The tension that was slipping away in the 2nd movie has now vanished into a far far away place. Action scenes are scarce, and the supporting players are neglected so much that you have bugger all sympathy for their plight. Disapointing even by the previous films' standards.

Resident Evil: Apocalypse

Lacks the tense atmosphere that made the first a riot, not enough screen time from Milla either. However still packs a punch!

Straightheads (Closure)
½

Anderson saves this movie from oblivion by giving an intriguing performance. Dyer on the other hand is rather shite. Not really what I was expecting, and somewhat unconvincing. The dynamics of the relationship post attack is however well handled. Note to English people: stick with Anderson's accent it becomes more bearable! Perhaps this films saving grace is its short running time.

Thank You for Smoking

Seems like I had the wrong idea on what this movie actually is. I dont think its worthy of all the praise its gotten, however it is fresh and original, and allows you to step into the shoes of an unconventional character.

Resident Evil
½

Recently rewatched this, and I have to say it it isnt quite as good as I remembered (poor teenage boy judgement was at work perhaps) Some of the SFX havent stood up to the test of time and now almost look tacky. Still lots of action and fun to be had. Still love the first 5 minutes. Definately one of the only video game to movie ideas to be worth a dime!

Stuck on You
Stuck on You(2003)
½

There are some good jokes to be found here, but they are few and far between. Ultimately its the two leads and their genuine relationship that make the movie work. Mendes is disastrously underused. Oh and as a side note - who knew Cher was a human being!? (nice job hiding her puppet strings)

No Country for Old Men

For the last few months Empire has done little else other than rave about No Country For Old Men -- Did it live up to expectations or did my bible sell me short? The answer is complicated, through and through its a great film, very dark, very entertaining and very sharp. Bardem creates a character that is original and deeply unsettling. The film plays with convention which has sparked much criticism. Whilst I understand why the directors shaped the movie the way they did and their rationale for the ending, i cant help but feel that I would have prefered a different take. Perhaps its simply that i was fooled by the Coens into believing it was Moss' story, but whatever the case its an entertaining movie worthy of its praise.

Perfume: The Story of a Murderer

Mixed feelings about this one! The first half is no less than a masterpiece, intriguing, dark and witty. The descriptions and lustful filming make you wish that you had smell-o-vision, and even without you still get a feel for the awe. My sole complaint is the ending, tone wise I just didnt feel it went with the rest of the movie. I would very much like to read the book to see if it deals with this transition differently.

The Fountain
The Fountain(2006)
½

Arguably my least favourite of Aronofsky's films. On a simple level the film is a success and emotionally powerful. However I canno't help but feel that the more complex, ambiguous aspects of the plot detract from the resonance. However on another level they very much add to the impact. At the end of the day this wouldn't be an Aronofsky movie if everything were clear cut and one dimensional. Instead we must search in the chaos to find our own interpretation, which is indead half of the fun. So not one for the mainstream then -- but who the hell cares -- infinately more interesting than the likes of Epic Movie and Scary Movie 23/Saw 12 that the public seems to lap up alongside their supersized popcorns to match their bellys. I still maintain that what sets Aronofsky apart is his ability to deal with psychological torment and grief. In all three of his movies I have been blown away by the scenes of emotional breakdown. Aronofsky draws something primal and real from his actors, and Jackman is no exception. Aronofsky produces tradegy to rival the heights of the Greeks.

Half Nelson
Half Nelson(2006)

A very subtle character driven movie. Not a whole lot to write home about outside of the two standout performances from Gosling and Epps. Ultimately however, it is these that make the film worth your time.

The X-Files - Fight the Future
½

As a fan of the show I can't be too critical, but suffice to say at times it felt like a normal double episode, whilst other times it certainly filled its cinematic boots. I found the overly 'we are a movie now' score to be a little too much. As for the film itself the first half is ridiculously entertaining, however 3rd act gets a little too ridiculous even for xfiles standards. Overall its an impressive effort -- but noobies to Mulder & Scully are better off checking out some of the outstanding episodes that the show turned out in its early years.

The Chumscrubber

Seriously fucked up shit! Takes Desperate Housewives and suburbia to a whole new level! Started off interestingly, kinda sagged in the middle, and went to purely horryfying heights towards the end. A must see, Jamie Bell is superb.

Ne le Dis à Personne (Tell No One)

Yet another example of what Hollywood has to learn from European cinema. Far superior to many of the thrillers put out on wide release this year. Tense, engrossing and well acted. Something goes a little wry towards the end, but the good far outweighs the bad.

The Lives of Others

You can't fault the movie for what it is, everything about it is finely done, however despite the interesting material i wasnt all that thrilled. I think much more could have been made of this.

Jarhead
Jarhead(2005)
½

Excellently shot, some great imagery is used. Really highlights how sometimes soldiers dont have a clue what they are doing or why they are doing it. Foxx for me is the standout, he follows his orders and training exactly, whilst also conveying a sense of not understanding, frustration and fear. Welcome to the suck.

Say It Isn't So

About 25mins in you start wondering what this film is actually about, and what connection the title has, and then 'You rodeod your sister!' gets thrown out there... Not exactly a smart movie, but there are laughs to be had!

Reign Over Me

hmm.. didn't match my expectations, Cheedle was great, but I felt the movie wasn't worthy of its subject material. However Burrows was a great little addition.

13 Going on 30
½

Still had me grinning on the 2nd watch ;p A little cheesy at times, but its impossible to resist its charm.

The Bourne Ultimatum
½

Somewhat dissapointing, but a satisfying end to the series. There are definate highs, but it fails to match the overall thrill of the first movie. I still think that Julia Stiles is horribly miscast.

Letters from Iwo Jima

A depressing affair, bleak and grim from the outset. Even more so having seen Flags of Our Fathers first and knowing what is to come (and no i dont mean because its history) Ironically not as powerful as I had expected. Just Bleak.

Juno
Juno(2007)

The most interesting script I have heard for a long term. It is impossible to resist Juno's quirky charm. Ellen Page deserves all the praise she is getting and more.

Alpha Dog
Alpha Dog(2007)

Like a less impressionate 'Bully' only with a sexier cast. The performances aren't bad, and some key scenes are pulled off well, even evoking emotion (however contrived) but the movie is somewhat lacking in believabilty and justification. Oh and LOLSA at the fat suit! Ridonculous!

The Royal Tenenbaums

Wes Anderson has a remarkable talent for turning complete random bollocks into something moving and meaningful. Unfortunately you have to sit through the entire movie to reach this revelation.

I Am Legend
I Am Legend(2007)

Great start and build up, however as soon as the dog dies it all plumets into the abyss. Nobody should have to sit through the last half! The feeling of dread lasts for entirely too long, translating into boredom. Smith whilst convincing just ends up being irritating. The ending, justification, and religious tones quite frankly made me vomit.

American Gangster
½

Its hard to fault this movie, everything seems perfect. The actors excel, the tension, drama and writing is all there -- Yet something is not quite right. I felt for starters that the pace was a little too slow, and that the story didn't offer enough to keep you interested for the near 3hr running time. Also the big payoff ('Money Shot') that you are waiting for never really happens. I would have like to have seen much more interaction between Crowe and Denzel. A solid film, but no masterpiece.

Capote
Capote(2005)
½

I think having not studied American literature I was clearly missing something... However an impressive film, the pace is sometimes painfully slow, but the performances more than make up for it. I developed quite a strong hatred towards the Capote portrayed, a cold, calculating man.

Lust, Caution

Ang Lee is fast becoming one of my favourite directors. This movie seemingly effortlessly draws you in and doesn't let go. Exceptional performance from the female lead. As usual the hype about the sex is unfounded, they are entirely necessary to depict the state and stakes of the relationship.

Hollywoodland
½

Yawn. Well made film with a great cast and setup, however it failed to keep my attention, becoming mighty boring and overly drawn out.

Blade Runner
Blade Runner(1982)
½

I was rather lost throughout the most part, but remained transfixed. The last 20mins or so are a real treat! The modifications for the final cut were impressive.

The Golden Compass
½

Bah! Does not do justice to the book :( The tone is lowered to a childish level (yes the book is a children's novel -- but it has so much more to offer) One example is the annoyingly squeaky Daemons. However it does have some good moments. Green and Graig do well, but Kidman irritates. Potential for better sequels is there. Oh yes and thanks to Little Britain 'Dust' has clearly been ruined ;p

Asylum
Asylum(2005)
½

hmm.. Not convincing at all. I did however enjoy the mood of the movie. Felt like some scenes were missing.

The Wind That Shakes the Barley

Nothing special as far as film making achievements go, however serves well as a historical piece, however accurate it may be, sheds light on something that isn't too well known about in todays Britain.

Beowulf
Beowulf(2007)

IMAX ftw :D Not sure how great this would have been if it was not in 3D. But 3D cinema has come a long way, mighty impressive stuff, a whole new reason to go to the cinema! The Dragon sequence at the end was phenomenal. Did not however need to see Anthony Hopkins' Butt -- even if it was digitally enhanced.. (5 Stars for visual effects, 3.5 stars for the movie)

The Virgin Suicides
½

I seen to be alone in totally not connecting with this tale. I just didn't get it.. and was distinctly unmoved by the final reel. I guess the point is that it is unexplained and unknown, but still give me a little more substance

Anaconda
Anaconda(1997)
½

I just re-watched this film, and i have to say it ages well :) not for conventional reasons, but this now looks like a seedy B-Movie (complete with ridiculous effects) Everything about it is a cheap romp, but in that lies the fun!

Godsend
Godsend(2003)

Nonsense ;p a real bore, and an ending which really emphasises all the fun that you didn't just have... De Niro stay away from the god damn scary children films..

Point Break
Point Break(1991)
½

Old school action movie ;) top notch... but why does it have Patrick Swayze in it?! (even if he is mildly kinda sorter convincing)

Trapped
Trapped(2002)

Mother & Son bonding time.. lets watch a movie! After fearing the worst i was pleasently surprised. Charlize Theron deserves formidable praise for turning a routine, drab role into something thrilling and watchable. The rest of the cast and the plot holes however do need some work ^^

Flags of Our Fathers

A good movie and an interesting angle to look at. My biggest problem was that it seemed to be a movie about the relationships between the soldiers, yet i failed to be able to identify which soldier was which throughout most of the war scenes.

Enough
Enough(2002)
½

Not as bad as you have heard ;p True it is overly long, and the plot is at first clichéd leading into absurd.. but its still a lot of fun. Lopez pulls off the character in my opinion and makes it worth a watch.

The Return
The Return(2006)

Yawn! Very very boring film, like a Pick-up truck commercial with added movie breaks. Gellar why did you chose this? you can do better! No suspense, no feelings for the characters, and a plot that is stuck together with wet toilet roll.

Sunshine
Sunshine(2007)

Slight let down on what I had hoped, failed to create an atmosphere, and I lost all track of what was going on during the last 15minutes or so. I would like to give this another shot when i'm more awake and not watching it on a pathetically small TV -- which i think helped to kill the mood and visual affects. Chris Evan's character deserves a medal or 10 ;p

Southland Tales

This is probably the film i have looked forward to most this year, and it didn't dissapoint. Sure its not perfect and can at times lag like a bitch, but the highs are so great it makes up for it. I read someone describe it as a bunch of clips stuffed together, which is I think how it comes off. There is a lot of fun to be had here, and most of all the film really sticks with you, not necessarily to make you think about what it means, but you can't stop thinking about what you have seen. Complaints about the acting are unjustified, it is spot on for the intention. Two last things; amazing soundtrack!; and Sarah Michelle Gellar never hotter ;p

Shortbus
Shortbus(2006)

Much more about the internal and pyshological shortcomings than what you have heard would have you think. The impact is strong and semi moving.

The King
The King(2006)
½

Didn't really connect with this film. Didn't really believe that the characters would behave in such a way, although its clear to see the directors intentions. Great to see Dano in another role though.

The Darjeeling Limited
½

Fantastically offbeat. Note to self - watch more Wes Anderson Movies. The setting adds a lot of charm to the movie, and the actors do a fantastic job, particularly Brody and Scwartzman. Great soundtrack too. Perhaps a little draggy at the end, would have liked to have seen the first half go on a little further.

Slither
Slither(2006)

A breath of fresh air, plenty of lauigh out loud moments. Loved the sexual connotations ^^

The Queen
The Queen(2006)

Took me a long while to convinve myself to watch it.. but thoroughly impressive. A story that perhaps many havent given much thought to.

Office Space
Office Space(1999)

Not quite what the hype had led me to believe, however very funny at times. THe first half in particular is spot on.

Night at the Museum
½

Nothing really stands out as wrong with this movie, and it does indeed have a few good laughs. I'm becoming quite the Wilson family fan.

The Guardian
The Guardian(2006)

Too long for its own good. Has some good parts to it, but something goes wrong with the whole. Makes you think twice about that childhood fantasy of being a lifeguard. oh p.s. what about those other coatsguards around the world mr.director?? think they need a shout out too!

Eastern Promises

Viggo Rules! as does Cronenberg. This could have been an ace movie had enough attention been payed to the supporting characters. As it stands Viggo's protagonist is an intriguing powerful man. A mob movie that sheds new light on the internals of the Russian Mafia.

Crank
Crank(2006)

An excellent example of what happens to a perfectly good premise when you cast a Chav in the lead role... All my intrigue in this movie was lost in the first frame.

30 Days of Night
½

A slight disapointment on what I had hoped for, but still very entertaining. Good to see an adult horror movie for a change. Any negatives are redeemed in the last reel.

The Marine
The Marine(2006)

Bullocks... enough said.

Snakes on a Plane
½

Slow to take off, but you get exactly what it says on the tin :D Absolute nonsense, but laugh out loud fun!

The Covenant
The Covenant(2006)

Good idea for a movie, somehow everything else got rather screwed up. Not bad, but not good either.

Ratatouille
Ratatouille(2007)
½

The story needs some work here, and the comedy isnt quite on Pixar form. However you can't deny that this is a masterpiece in terms of animation. Details are fine and intricate, a pleasure to watch.

Secuestro Express
½

I wanted to love this film for Mia Maestro, and while it does succeed in creating some tension, and good performances, something is evidently lacking come the final real. Nice to see South America on film though.

Caché
Caché(2005)

I seem to have understood the deeper meaning here, yet still feel it is pointless. Great performances can't save this one, don't beleive the hype.

The Host
The Host(2007)

Not quite what I expected. Monster is a formidable enemy :p However the whole thing feels a little pointless given the overall outcome..

Saw IV
Saw IV(2007)

Great gore.. if such a thing can be said... but this time around it is even more prominent that the traps are the only thing that makes these movies interesting. The story is even more devoid of an interesting plot than ever before. Could everyone including myself please stop going to see these movies so that i wont have to endure Saw 22 when i'm 40 :/

Die Hard
Die Hard(1988)

Some what dissapointing, but fun none the less. A solid movie, but perhaps not a classic.

The Kingdom
The Kingdom(2007)
½

The political message isn't as strong as it wants to be, and it somehow manages to convey equal strong bias to both pro and anti americanism.. but what the hell, after a slow middle picks up to deliver one hell of a action punch. (P.s GIEF Alias movie)

The Last Kiss
½

Not nearly as smart and out there as I had hoped for, still mildly entertaining, yet boring by the end. Hopes of seeing Rachel Bilson doing some real acting were dashed.

The Great Ecstasy of Robert Carmichael

Absolute shite. Good casting of the lead, but completely wasted. Culmunates in one of the most disgusting scenes i have ever scene of film. Makes no sense...

Final Destination 3
½

As usual complete trash, but much fun to be had with it :)

Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance

Some of the most depressing, sadastic scenes I have ever seen, yet unlike most it seems utterly pointless. The movie starts off with an overblown political message, and then descends into madness. Promising premise, from a good director, but not his best.

Disturbia
Disturbia(2007)
½

Fantastic thriller! Its been a long while since a movie made me feel this tense... well i guess Grindhouse wasn't that long ago :p Couldn't ask for a better teen movie.

Brick
Brick(2006)

I have no idea what film noir is... but this certainly intrigues me to the genre. Takes a while, but this film gets you, and gets you good. Gordo-Levitt is definately an actor to watch for the future, Oscar's should be a calling in a few years time.

Lower City (Cidade Baixa)

Very cool, and reminded me of this summer :) but really needed something extra to make the story really worthwhile... however great performances and great chemistry and tension between the trio!

We Don't Live Here Anymore
½

hmmm... good acting from Ruffalo and Dern, but unfortunately the story tires after the first half.

Inside Man
Inside Man(2006)

Completely overated. This doesn't mean its a bad movie, but purely run of the mill. Great acting as usual from the leads, but I hoped it would offer something new to the genre.

3:10 to Yuma
3:10 to Yuma(2007)
½

Love Bale, Hate Crowe, but two phenomenal actors in the same movie. Great chatactor development and very thoughtful.

The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada
½

A very slow paced movie with a simple message of frienship and respect.

Hotel Rwanda
Hotel Rwanda(2004)

Disturbing and unsettling. This is an important film that everyone should see, serves to educate on the horrors of genocide, and shed light on an incident that we may have been too young to appreciate at the time.

1408
1408(2007)

Very creepy and effective in the first half, but goes dramatically downhill and loses all the suspense built in the 2nd half. Good acting, probably could have toned down the SFX a little to make it more effective.

Sympathy for Lady Vengeance

Not nearly as engrossing as Oldboy, but judged alone this is a more subtle vehicle which still intrigues.

The Simpsons Movie

Funny, but no funnier than a average episode. Appease us all and make the Futurama epic instead! Homer however is gold! but pls gief more Santa's little helper :(

Transformers
Transformers(2007)

Even better than i thought it would be, very entertaining, and managed to pull off being convincing, shame i fell asleep in the beginning -- don't blame the film though :p

Vacancy
Vacancy(2007)
½

No matter how hot Kate Beckinsale is, it can't save this movie... nothing new to be found here.

Zodiac
Zodiac(2007)

Starts off fantasically, but fails to keep up the pace, grew bored of the movie by the end (though perhaps the lack of sleep and aireoplane was to blame...)

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
½

Major props for being the first movie i have managed to see in months (Yey Lima!). Didn't disapoint, and reset my interest in the series... shame about some of Daniel's acting, and could have been longer. but lots of fun and entertaining none the less!

Batman Begins

After falling asleep in the cinema i decided to give this movie another shot on DVD. Not as horrific as i had first imagined, yet while I appreciated the tone, mood and acting talent i did feel that it lacked a little excitement

Grindhouse
Grindhouse(2007)

Sex on a Stick! (well reel..)

John Tucker Must Die

Stuffed to the brim with cliches and predictable plot lines.

Pi
Pi(1998)
½

A complex and trippy movie, that quite literally made my head spin -- the style can be a little nausiating. However I am in love with Aronofsky's method of shooting human psychological torment - a style that is truly shocking and moving.

Pirates of the Caribbean: At Worlds End

enjoyable movie on par with the 2nd, but not as cool as the first. The romantic in me wanted a better result for Will and Elizabeth though.

Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels

Everything that is wrong with English Culture

Empire of the Sun

Interesting premise, but has a slow pace.. and Christian Bale as a kid is mighty annoying

Spider-Man 3
Spider-Man 3(2007)

not as cool as the others, though i loved the Harry and Peter storyline

Buffy the Vampire Slayer

awful movie -- but it did spawn the greatest TV show ever - so i forgive it

Eragon
Eragon(2006)

horrible script, horrible acting, horrible

Children of Men

Big disapointment, not the movie i was expecting

The Invisible

Interesting enough, lacks excitement though.

Jeepers Creepers

A horror movie with such great potential... great opening 40 or so minutes... but why a flying blue man :(

X-Men: The Last Stand

Big disapointment compared to the other two, not sure why everybody loved it, definately misses Bryan Singer.