Kurt Bell's Movie Ratings - Rotten Tomatoes

Movie Ratings and Reviews

Phantom from Space
½

So we have another one of those sci-fi's when a strange man in a suit drops from outer space, this time he happens to be invisible underneath his suit and goes around hurting a few people. Eventually the scientists trying to track him down manage to shanghai his suit because he gets out of it for some reason even though his life is dependent on the gas that is in the suits breathing apparatus. With the suit they set a trap because they know he will need to return to breathe the gas again.

Memorable moments, the film was that dull I only remember two things in detail. The first one being the worst comb over I have ever seen being sported by a man in a radio station who pops on frequently to send messages over his tannoy. The second memory I have was when the alien locked the woman in the science lab and watched her labour over some machinery, they should have named this 'Pervert from Space' just because of that scene.

Other criticisms were the amount of narration used to explain this, it was obvious that they must not have had all the facilities possible to just create the story and had to resort to a sort of narration that sounded similar to a news reporter to explain this. One positive is I thought was some of the special effects were pretty good for its day, not all the moving invisible objects were moved by string.

Unknown World

This feature is your classic 'tunnel to the centre of the earth' scenario but on this occasion they are doing it in search of another place for people to live after they have come to the conclusion that soon the earth will not be habitable after the event of a nuclear war. A bog standard drilling machine that also houses the crew is constructed and after some external funding our hero's get on their way.

Throughout the film I felt as if it was almost a science lesson to the viewer, the way the characters explain why stalactites and caverns are formed when everyone in the group knows how they are formed because they are all seasoned scientists or at least harbour a few brain cells. The world they are exploring is not your typical centre of the earth filled with dense jungles and dinosaurs but rather just normal caverns and miles of stalactites so to stop us getting bored we see two of the main characters kicking of every five minutes with our busty companion getting in the mix to sort it out.

At one point some silly sausage leaves the ships only water exposed to some dangerous gasses and spoils it all but for some reason to the woman of the group this is the least of her worries as you can blatantly see in her chops when she discovers Rabbits can't breed in this underground world. I thought rabbits lived and bonked underground myself, I think this happened because of the vibrations from the drilling machine digging a good 1600 miles underground through solid rock that seen all the test rabbits babies of but that's just me.

It may seem pretty ridiculous in places but I'm sure this film had allot to say back in 1950, being only 5 years since Hiroshima people would have been predicting similar things about the end of the world and the ideas in such films might have frightened people more than any horror film at the time.

Red Cliff Part II (Chi Bi 2)

So finally the Battle of Red Cliff had dawned, or so I thought... It looked like from the first Red Cliff we were just about ready for the big attack but in fact we actually still have a long way to go, not that that was a totally bad thing although I was bursting for some more action. This film focuses more on the generals using tactics to disrupt the enemy through means other than on the battlefield, tricks to destroy moral and the effectiveness of each faction's troops.

There is really some ingenious and interesting tactics they use from sending boat loads of leukaemia ridden corpses to the strategists predicting weather forecasts. My favourite scene has to be when the coalition of Shu and Wu are desperately in need of arrows so they send boats loaded with straw out under the cover of a mist so the enemy can't see what's in the boats, just a figure on the horizon. Wei release a hail of arrows upon the boats and the vessels simply catch the arrows in its straw, magic 100,000 arrows obtained. It might sound a little unrealistic but I assure you it was marvellously executed. One of the greatest things is the score that has been used within these scenes; all these Chinese melodies give you a real feel for the time and story and create some of the best atmosphere I have felt.

Finally after about maybe an hour and a half the battle begins but even during this battle you will not see nearly as much action as was in the first Red Cliff but what you will see is stupendous amount of fire from this point until the end, in fact it started to give me a headache. Again just as visually stunning as before and gives you an ideal grasp of the sorts of tactics and formations used within ancient china. The movie also offers a small love story throughout which is somewhat interesting but ultimately there wasn't as much action as the first part of this tale to be as eye catching, still a marvellous film to watch.

Walker
Walker(1987)

A true story of sorts just with the added effect of a helicopter, cigarette machines, computers and bolt action rifles in the mid eighteen hundreds, Walker is the story of a man who basically invades another country declaring it's for their best that America should rule it. It's an adventure story as much as it is a war film and a satire which had me enjoying it from the off.

Walker is a film that I believe doesn't take its self seriously but has a strong message with it, Walker is shown as a hero but yet it's obvious he is an absolute nob. He shows exactly what a nasty piece of work people who are given absolute power can be but at the end of the day still be perceived as the hero. Another thing I noticed was that Walkers army had muskets but whenever they get into a confrontation those muskets turn into bolt action rifles which I thought must resemble the difference in power when countries like America invade lesser countries Vietnam or something?

I spent about fifty minutes looking for Joe Strummer and Dick Rude's cameo appearance and when I found it, it was less than four seconds but still made me laugh. The key to the enjoyment of this movie was its absurdity like in Terry Gilliam movies and if the likes of Roger Ebert can't see past historical accuracies and every detail being perfect then they should shove a firework up themselves. That man just seems to make everyone's minds up for them and takes away peoples own opinions which make us all individuals.

Saam gwok dzi gin lung se gap (Three Kingdoms: Resurrection of the Dragon)
½

Three Kingdoms depicts a time in China's history that was full of war and violence, three major factions emerge all vying to unify China under their banner. This feature follows the faction of Shu who have always been depicted as being the good guys through this period; in particular the film follows the general Zhou Yun through his career finishing with the battle of Hanzong. The main opposition is the kingdom of Wei who is first ruled by Cao Cao but the film covers thirty two years of the war and by the end Wei is ruled by his granddaughter who is just as cruel and cunning as he is.

Unfortunately I had the dubbed version of the film so I can't judge the acting as well as I would have liked to, this was some of the best dubbing I have ever seen but like with all films it just spoils emotional scenes or make them seem humorous so I would advise obtaining it with subs. From what I could tell the acting was solid, all the recent Chinese and Japanese films have stepped up a notch in training actors because once over it looked like they couldn't say a line of dialogue without having the biggest grin slapped across their chops.

Pretty much from start to the finish the movie is absolutely packed with action; we have about four or even five duels throughout and a few large scale battles. That's what's great about this film is that there isn't really a love story going on and it just purely focuses on the war part of things and the sheer amount of blood that is spilled is insane! As for a favourite scene I would say the final scene is one of the most powerful ones I have witnessed in a long time despite the dubbed dialogue it is still emotional.

Invisible Ghost

Bela Lugosi plays an old man who has lost his wife in a car crash and is trying his best to get on with things. Unfortunately it is not to be, Bela keeps seeing what he thinks is his dead wife outside the window every night and people in the mansion start dieing from be strangled by a murderer who is revealed right at the start of the movie...

There is no way I could possible spoil the movie for anyone, even if it didn't tell you that it was Bela Lugosi doing the murders at the start you would because well, it's what Lugosi does. It also very blatant that Bela is also not aware he is behaving badly because he goes into some sort of zombie trance every time his catches a glimpse of his hot wife out the window. I find it such a waste of a fine actor when they make him walk round the house with both his arms raised in front of him in such a stereotypical way.

There was one scene which was absolute magic in this feature, every morning the residence of the mansion wake up to discover that someone has been murdered but this time the painting of Lugosi's wife has been vandalised, obviously he is unaware it was himself that committed the atrocity because of the trance he enters at night. When he comes down the stairs in morning with everyone else he sees the painting and the look on his face is very upsetting to see, he is absolutely devastated but consoles himself and checks the house to see if everyone else is ok.

The Stranger
The Stranger(1946)
½

The Stranger is an Orson Welles directed movie that he also stars in as well, it's all about the bloke Francis Kindler who was apparently the mastermind of the holocaust. He has destroyed all evidence of him ever existing and made a new life in America until his one of his comrades' is released from prison and followed to where Kindler is living. The Stranger is also the first film to feature videos from concentration camps which would have given the movie allot of power to shock when it was released.

I was rather surprised that Orson played Kindler as I would have thought he might have wanted to play the hero and not a man responsible for millions of deaths. He played it brilliantly though as his tall threatening presence could easily be pictured in a pair of jack boots and the rest of the attire especially with his moustache. There is no spoiling the movie for anyone for who is Kindler as it is announced within the first ten minutes of the movie when Orson strangles his former comrade to death because of the possibility someone has followed him to Kindler's destination.

I'm not convinced this film is as good as it is made out to be, I think most of the hype comes from the fact it is simply Orson Welles who has directed and starred in it similar to every Spielberg film being somehow magical because its him who has done it. I still enjoyed the movie I just thought it lacked a bit of atmosphere that could have been created within the village it was set and made things a tad creepier to reflect Kindler's evil personality.

The Killer Shrews

A typical story of the lab experiment gone wrong except this time it's a couple of hundred Shrews on an island that have grown strangely to the exact same size as dogs. The inhabitancy have to stop the Shrews getting in over night as through the day their eyes are sensitive to light so they can then make a quick get away to a boat on the other side of the island.

Negatives, the Shrews were simply dressed up Dogs and it was dreadfully noticeable in fact one of the Dogs had spots on its leg and was probably a Dalmatian. I was actually very surprised by the film maker's choice to do things this way; I was expecting to see stock footage of Shrews edited into the movie a bit like "Empire of the Ants". Another negative was when one character is going to give the other a gun but keeps it in his hand and then when the shot changes the gun appears in his hand. The story line was also really cliché as the scientist was also German; also as this was filmed in the 50's it was noticeable that the characters of a different ethnic background were killed first except the scientist.

The acting of The Killer Shrews was actually rather good or as good as it can be for a b-movie. Although there were a load of cheesy elements and some mistakes I couldn't help but like this film a rather lot. It was just like a zombie movie but with Shrews and it captured the atmosphere of the people being stuck inside with no way out rather perfectly making me think of this film of a cross between "Night of the Living Dead" and "Empire of the Ants".

The Screaming Skull
½

A couple moves into the husband's house that has already had a murder committed in it previously, the woman has been in a sanatorium before and people don't believe her when she starts seeing the dreaded skull pop up all over the shop. The gardener is also a bit slow in the head and weird so when the husband starts smelling something fishing he immediately thinks the gardener is playing some jokes on them. The DVD case suggested this was going to be some atmospheric horror perhaps a bit like "Horror Hotel" or "Sleepy Hollow" but unfortunately it was not to be.

In the opening of the movie it states that the film may frighten you to death and if this happens the makers of the film have promised to pay for any funeral costs, must be a safe bet for the makers of Screaming Skull unless they would be financially crippled from this. The acting was at an ok level that I could handle although the lead character done allot of that single tone emotionless acting with that deep American accent allot which eventually becomes tiring. I do give the film credit for building on the characters more and giving the viewer more chance to get to know them which is what these new murder films with a group of teenagers are missing.

There are some absolute terrible scenes in this movie. There is one where the lead actor and some other dude simply standing outside talking, it has both of them in the shot but then goes to a close up of the lead character talking which is so painfully obvious that it was shot separate to the scene as the quality of audio is allot different and most of all he's pointing in the opposite direction to the character he is speaking to. It does this again another scene when the same character and his wench are in the bedroom although this time It's worse as when it changes views she is wearing a completely different dress... The final thing that somewhat cheesed me of was in the final scene that was meant to kill the viewer the guy is wrestling with the skull in a pond using his hands to move it back and forwards into his neck as if it's coming in for multiple attacks.

The Bat
The Bat(1959)

A murder mystery set in a large mansion in the middle of a forest, The Bat is a murderer who is on the prowl for the missing million dollars that were stolen just from a bank and believed to be hidden in the mansion that is within the story. With the Bat making frequent visits and people dead or alive all over the shop in the mansion it is very hard to guess who is committing these crimes. The movie was based on the 1920 Broadway play and was previously filmed in 1926 and 1930 making this the third version.

Vincent Price and Agnes Morehead co-star in this thriller and help boost what would be considered a typical and cliché story that could easily go wrong in what is considered a b-movie of the 50s. With Vincent Price committing crimes on screen that are not related the Bat and butler disappearing and acting suspicious amongst others this film truly kept me guessing right up until the end, as the film was relatively old and being a low budget feature there were times I was thinking the murderer was the obvious choice but then other times I thought I wasn't going to be let down and it was going to be someone unsuspecting.

Most of the setting was within the mansion and the doctor's laboratory with all the footage seeming to be filmed indoors but I didn't notice this until after the film was finished which was very pleasing as that meant my interest was satisfied throughout. In all I thought this was a great little film especially for one I got for a single pound out of a shop because allot of these old films are out of copy right and can be mass produced at a low price by anyone.

Centurion
Centurion(2010)

Centurion shows the ill fated march of the Ninth Legion on Caledonia located in Britain north of Hadrian's Wall. The rough idea of the story is as follows; when the army is massacred in an ambush the survivors attempt to free their commander who was captured in the conflict while doing this they are rumbled and the Picts who send out a small force of trackers the next day to jizz on their parade. The Romans know what is coming and have to hatch a plan to evade the pursuers.

At first glance I thought the film was based on the novel of the same name by Simon Scarow as it was a Roman war film set in Britain but as the story unfolded this was proven to be untrue. The idea still excited me as all historical war films do so I still gave it a bash. The first twenty minutes were not so good, the movie launched into a whole bombardment of bog standard Romans acting the dog's bollocks with all that "I'm Marcus Testicleese from Jizzlopolis sent by the emperor" crack but after the survivors of the ambush emerge they seem to develop more character.

There were still some other faults with the feature like the whole concept... The idea of a bunch of heroes on the run is not an unseen one especially in historical movies i.e. "Apocalypto" and "10,000 BC". Another problem was that the black Roman was the same guy who played Mickey the assistant in the new Dr. Who meaning there was no way I could ever take his Roman banter seriously, lucky for me the movie doesn't focus on him too much. The final problem was that the leader of the people tracking them was one of those stereotypical evil butch women; in all fairness a woman would never be allowed a position that high in the army bad then unless she was born into nobility and more strangely there is not a chance in hell she would have such a lean figure, she would have to be ripped to bits to take out as many Romans as she did. It's obvious this was added to please the male body of the audience which makes you worry that they thought they needed to do this.

Putting all these faults aside this film is actually rather great, the best actor being Liam Cunningham who has just been appearing in loads of films for the past three years now playing a similar style role as in "Clash of the Titans" showing he is well adapted for these sorts of movies. The story was very well engineered and directed making me think it could possibly be the best version of that run away plot I was referring to before. The amount of blood in all the fight scenes is rather impressive reminding me of those Chinese war films set in the times of the three kingdoms and the climax to this movie was actually much unsuspected and pleasant.

I Sell the Dead
½

18th century grave robbing at its best, Ron Perlman reprises his role as a priest again after 2008s "Mutant Chronicles" and Dominic Monaghan (stars as the grave robber himself. Also a light comedy I Sell The Dead manages to combine such a dark horror topic extremely well with the humour with a great balance between the two. The movie starts with Dominic imprisoned and his friend beheaded before Ron Perlman comes to read him his last rights before he himself also ends up with the same fate of beheading. The film then shows the series of events leading to how they ended up in this predicament and how they ventured from flogging corpses to then selling the undead!

Most of the acting was sound, especially Larry Fessenden who really suited that 18th century commoner and played a convincing Englishman as he is from New York, Dominic Monaghan was also satisfactory but Ron Perlman for what little scenes he had doesn't seem to fit to well as a priest and for me will always be the awesome Russian from "Enemy At The Gates". The movie a few excellent things going for it, the score was fantastic fitting in perfectly with the time, setting and dark atmosphere that was trying to be created. Angus Scrimm also played a part of a mad Doctor who purchased dead bodies from the heroes, he played it very well but I couldn't help but thing that part had Christopher lee wrote all over it.

The transaction from the normality of grave robbing to doing specialist jobs involving the undead was brilliantly aided with the light comedy which tells the viewer not to take things to seriously. There was also some references to aliens in the film which is something I havn't seen in a movie set in this sort of period before. There isn't many faults to comment on, there were a few parts early on where I thought the editing was a little sloppy, could have been to do with the editor been given lack of footage to work with I don't know but it wasn't anything keeping from enjoying his feature as I really started getting into it which made me forget about any minor mistakes that could have emerged. Definitely one to watch!

Attack On Darfur

Dafur, named so after the witty one liner in the film where the elder of the village tells the thieves, rapists, terrorists, murderers or plainly ' the bad guys ' he was going to turn his village into an independent country called "Dafur" before taking an AK-47 clip to the chest. This is one of the latest features by the infamous director Uwe Boll who was actually on set filming Dafur when he got another award for being the worst director of 2009 by the Razies. A shame really because everything this guy has done for the past few years has made me blow a gasket in my pants, unfortunately for him it is almost impossible in this world to change a bad first impression in people's minds.

The movie is about a group of news reporters, who go to Sudan to get some footage and stories of the natives while being accompanied by a couple of Nigerian troopers, after hearing about all the bad times for the populace there they decide to leave. When they see a gang of about thirty thugs heading to the village to commit murder they decide to turn back in hope they will leave ' Dafur ' alone because of the presence of the media, unfortunately they don't give a crap...

There is no main character as such in the film, they are all equal which is great as its different and doesn't outline anyone as being safe of certain to die giving it more suspense and freedom of choice for who you select as your favourite. This has to be one of the most barbaric and gruesome things I have seen in some time, the viewer gets the privilege of being able to see babies impaled on stakes, head shots on children and stupid amounts of rape. All this comes with the statement of something needs to be done in Sudan as the movie suggests in its credits. The acting was very realistic even by all the natives that only had small parts in the interviews, the actor Edward Furlong appeared in the feature who has also been in Uwe Boll's "Stoic" which is as equally if not possibly a better movie which was in 2009; he is also known as playing the young John Connor in Terminator two. Another thing that springs to mind when watching Dafur is "Cannibal Holocaust", not only did it have a have a very similar story line but also I was puzzled how Boll managed to afford and get so many fake bodies to the setting of the film with such a small budget for scene when they all get burned.

House On Haunted Hill

Another murder mystery starring Vincent Price in almost an exactly same setting, this time the stars of the movie are unable to the leave the house that is apparently haunted. Vincent has decided to host a party in the house inviting random individuals to stay the night for $10,000 each which will have been a lovely sum considering the time of which the movie is set.

I was worried from the off with this film, the introduction was very cheesy especially when this dudes head pops up and tells the viewers the crack of the story line with some horrendous acting, even when the superimposed Mr Price himself pops up on the backdrop still of the mansion saying he rented the house also had me worried. Then the narration of Vincent Price introduces the rest of the characters that would be staying at the house which wasn't too bad as it had a bit of originality. There was one other problem; the score was diabolically bad which is never good thing as it resurfaces throughout and you will be continuously faced with the same irritation, it sounded like one of those cheep sci-fi eerie pieces of music where the alien slowly emerges from a spacecraft.

In comparison to "The Bat" the story line of this movie was far better; it had me guessing more what the crack was so much more. Was it Vincent, was it one of the people he invited who were committing the murders and when I couldn't figure it out I ended up going back to maybe the house is actually haunted? As there was plenty of evidence suggesting so. Another comparison to "The Bat" would be the setting of the film, to me this again won as it seemed as if it was actually filmed within a mansion as some shots had the camera pan 360 in a room and sometimes you could see the roof whereas "The Bat" seemed almost like it was just filmed in a studio. I have to credit this movie for doing one thing a horror film hasn't done to me in a while, I shat bricks at one scene where the camera pans and the alleged ghost is behind the person as it was so surprising and looked really grotesque in black and white like one of those Jack the Ripper victim photos...

Robin Hood
Robin Hood(2010)

Not what you would call your typical Hood story or your men in tights interpretation but when you get Ridley Scott in he isn't going to do it conventionally. The movie starts in France on the return of the crusades and Richard the Lion heart is sacking every castle for provisions until he makes it back to England. Unfortunately the night before the last siege Robin had some harsh words with Richard and he ended up in the stocks. When Richard the Lion Heart dies in battle Robin makes of in the confusion and returns to England in disguise as a nobleman and starts banging Maid Marian and lives happily ever after...

In this version of Robin there is no evil Sheriff of Nottingham, he just another character in the county this is set. I noticed allot of people were not pleased with this version of the tale but I thought it was brilliant, what allot of people are forgetting is that Robin Hood is technically a fictional character which means Ridley Scott can have allot of fun with. Besides I'm sure this movie would have been a flop if it had followed the same boring forest dwelling band of merry men as it usually does. Although at the end of the film it is shown there is obviously going to be a sequel that looks like it will show some of that classic Robin Hood allot of people want to see.

There were only a few historical inaccuracies, Lion heart lived for a couple of days after the siege before getting gangrene and released the man who shot him with the crossbow for showing bravery or such crap only to be killed anyway after Richard died. Not very important but would have been fun to see also I wasn't aware the French tried to invade England in 1299AD? Wikipedia seems to also agree with me on this one.

The acting was all great although I thought they should have made use of more good British actors, Russell Crow made a good Robin Hood I thought as yet again like the rest of the film it wasn't a stereotype which in this case would have been some young stud in some sort of skin tight pants and perhaps Robin wood have been a little older or at least looked that old after fighting all those years in the holy land and squinting at the sun. I liked how the film almost echoed "Kingdom of Heaven" with the travelling group of heroes as it was at the start before Robin made it to England it was obvious why Ridley was chosen to direct this feature. The last thing I have to address is that I was told by allot of people that this movie was to long? But I honestly didn't notice.

Rammbock: Berlin Undead
½

Yet another zombie film, luckily I can't get bored of these but I was a bit sceptical of the title of this one as all zombie films are usually a siege of some sort and I was worrying about how it could be different with such a revealing title. I was surprised when I found out this was German and even more surprised when I discovered its run time was only one hour one minute, this time the survivors are in a block of flats which are built round a courtyard with one exit and one entrance with the question of how to get away or even if they should even bother trying to leave.

Within five minutes of the movie I realised why it was only one hour long and that was because it jumped straight in at the deep end which was superb. We watch zombie films to see how people cope with the challenges of struggling to live and to see a whole bunch of sausages pop out of someone's stomach when they get caught by the world's slowest villains followed by a load of hands entering them through non traditional routes. We don't watch them to see why Fred is also having a crap time because his bitch also left him the day before the apocalypse. The success of this film as a great horror flick is rather puzzling as you don't see anyone typically destroying the brain as you usually do, in fact you don't even see any guns which is more realistic than the other zombie films I have seen when every person on a terrace row has a uzi or shotgun under their pillow.

I really liked the idea of how the whole block of flats worked, everyone was too scared to enter the stairwell and has to resort to going through some unorthodox doors to get to the flat next door like through the wall or over the roof and it made this small setting seem like more of an adventure than you would think. There is also some new ideas introduced on how to piss the zombies of as well, the flash from a camera is too sensitive for their eyes which temporarily stuns the opponents. This film was so great I didn't even know I was reading the sub titles once it got going so I would recommend this for anyone who has a spare hour lying around.

1968 Tunnel Rats

A Vietnam film directed by Uwe Boll, this movie focuses on the underground warfare in all the tunnels constructed by the Vietcong turning this into more a claustrophobic horror than a war film. One striking element was the films score; Uwe Boll has used something similar in a few of his more recent directional efforts and seems to do the trick rather well.

There was no script for Tunnel Rats with the actors improvising all their lines, sometimes it shows with allot of the topics of the soldiers being very similar about missing their families and how to survive you have to shut up and keep your head down and get on with things. The people who were destined to survive were pretty predictable as one of the characters dreamed of going home and starting a restaurant that sold burgers, fries and a drink within minutes of ordering, i.e. McDonalds so if this guy is going to start McDonalds he has to survive right? The improvisation of the script didn't affect the quality of acting in the slightest and once the men entered the tunnels it didn't matter much anyway as there was little talking down there.

Having the war film set mainly in the tunnels gave this a very original take on Vietnam, it was essentially a horror and to go with this was the correct amount of blood and action. I distinctly remember a man getting hung with the rope to long which resulted in some unpleasant times for him, there was a graphic moment when a fella got a massive slice of bamboo though his neck and then probably the worst of all was when someone had to cut a dead Vietcong up in the tunnel in order to create enough room for him to squeeze round. With this films originality and gore I would certainly recommend seeing this at least once.

Black Death
Black Death(2011)

Apparently the film that sees Sean Bean reprise his role as Bromir except he is obsessed with religion in Black Death. Black Death is all about Sean Beaneo getting a band of bad ass soldiers together to go and cleanse what they think is a daemon filled village in the middle of the marsh as the plague somehow hasn't reached it yet which means to people of medieval societies that they are obviously doing something naughty. Their mission to eradicate the populous and bring back the necromancer to claim a very nice reward, the less people to come back the bigger the share of the bounty each person collects.

Once the movie got under way it started to get very exciting, I was hoping for one of those stories where the people go to an isolated village and don't know who to trust and at the same time try to solve some sort of mystery. In many ways this is what you get but the setting of the village let me down in a few ways, the inhabitance of the village weren't creepy enough and neither was the setting. I assumed everything would be darker, it wasn't bad at all just wasn't what I was expecting. The action wasn't all that brilliant in the early periods but then I don't think the movie was really about the action like the poster may have suggested but more about the story.

Even with its faults I still thought the film was great, just the fact Sean Bean was acting like he owned the shop was good enough for me, all the acting was great to which I was quickly wondering not far in who my favourite character was which isn't usually the case when the Beaninator is about. The ending was great in a horrible but genius way which kind of reminded me of "The Mist", unfortunately someone spoiled part of the ending for me but they missed out on some key information when they were doing so making me very pleased when I witnessed the full extent of the climax.

The Escapist
The Escapist(2008)
½

A prison brake movie, but not your bog standard one. The Escapist is very original in the fact it is not only about escaping from prison but also a psychological thriller with an ending that will leave you so hard you won't be standing up for hours. When Frank realises his daughter may die of a drug overdose at any moment as she is in intensive care he must escape from prison within the next day or two to see her before she kicks the lid giving him limited time to plan a brake such a complex brake out in a modern built prison.

As far as actors go we have Brian Cox who transforms the movie a huge amount but with others like Liam Cunningham, Steven Mackintosh and Damian Lewis the film is unstoppable. Steven Mackintosh's acting was very good but also disturbing to watch as he got too close to allot of men it made me think how much id hate being in some of their positions. Liam Cunningham as always came up trumps as well making him possibly the coolest character in the feature and Damian Lewis played the prisoner who owns the spot even though he's just a prisoner himself, there's always this character in most prison brake movies.

Everything was well executed and well directed with only a few minor embellishments lying within the escape plan but there was little more that could asked for with the depiction of a prison brake movie that has to be all wrapped up within 2 days within the story. The style in which it was shot was great, the film swapped between the actual brake out and the leading up to it before all coming together at the end and revealing the twist.

Cromwell
Cromwell(1970)
½

The English Civil War from 1642 to 1651, Cromwell shows the story of the man himself portrayed by Richard Harris. When King Charles I stars the civil war by neglecting his people and more importantly in the course of things his own parliament things kick of when Cromwell's friend gets his ears lobbed of for getting a bit stroppy over the king giving his land to some rich get. The war comes to an end at the battle of Nasby but the king is bitter and continues to get up peoples noses.

Since this film I have never seen an English Civil War film revolve entirely round Oliver Cromwell even though he is the key figure in the whole ordeal. The reason for this in my opinion is Richard Harris; there has never been anyone that can even scratch the surface of what that man done for this film, he has almost created a stereotype of Cromwell (apart from the warts) and anything that will be made featuring a similar story line would just become a flop. There are also some good performances from Alec Guinness and a very young Timothy Dalton.

For the time there must have a been a tremendous amount of coinage put into the production of this feature, the battle scenes are huge and there was no aid of special effects, just pure labour, costumes and gunpowder. At over two hours I thought the movie would be a bit boring as I already knew allot of it would focus more on the arguing of parliament and people having banter about nasty Charles but I was surprisingly entertained.

Intruder
Intruder(1989)

Entirely set in a super market, some dude comes and starts some hassle in a late night shift because his former wench works there and he's trying his hardest to get back with her. It turns into a fight and then he has to be removed by force but not for good it seems... Shortly after murders start to come into the film thick and fast with someone getting crippled every few minutes.

After reading the back of the box for the movie I assumed this would be something like "The Mist" but with a better cast. There was a bit of that atmosphere there that no one could get out of the shopping centre and people were getting picked off one by one, unfortunately it all seemed a bit overdone and pointless in a sense. Another thing that was annoying was that on the front of the box art it said Scott Spiegel from "Evil Dead 2", Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell but Scott Spiegel was in it for less than 30 seconds and Bruce Campbell was in it for about a minute at the end with about two lines of dialogue but at least still two lines more than Scott. There was a fair bit of Sam Raimi and also allot of his brother Ted Raimi who maybe should have got been slapped on the front cover. In fairness to the movie it's not its fault for these names being on the case I just thought I would mention it if anyone was thinking there was going to be stacks of Campbell in this.

I couldn't help but notice some very experimental and at most of the time good camera shots and directing, It added allot more to some simple scenes of dialogue. The deaths in the movie were great, there was a few memorable scenes like when Ted Raimi was slicing some melon while blasting some tunes out through his headphones and then the maniac brings down a knife on his head, then after a couple of the seconds the headphones split apart and drop to the deck like a sack or crap. Another scene I was impressed with was when this guy's head got thrust through some meat cutter, the latex head was amazingly accurate and looked very realistic for what seems a low budget film from the 1980's.

44 Inch Chest

The story of this film is rather basic; Colin's wife has left him for some young stud of a Frenchman which quite naturally upsets him. It's not a classic revenge story in fact there isn't much action at all, most of the story is set in one particular room and the movie relies allot on character development to make the viewer sympathise with Colin even though he slapped his wife round allot when he found out about her getting shafted by the frog.

A film like this that is set mainly in one room and relies on the characters to interest the audience needs a great cast to hold everything together. 44 Inch Chest delivers, we have one hell of an outstanding cast in my opinion, Ray Winston, John Hurt and Tom Wilkinson are the ones that stick in my mind the most. It was especially nice not having to see Ray play another back stabbing Englishman like in the latest Indiana Jones but a good guy of sorts who spends most of his time crying over the whole affair.

The movie can get a little confusing and almost annoying at times with Colin often day dreaming and leading the viewer in the wrong direction before returning to reality. I wasn't particularly interested in Colin getting his revenge; I found the most exciting parts were when his friends were sitting about having banter about what they did the night before followed with a flashback of the events described. In the end I wasn't quite sure of the aim of this film other than good prevails of evil with Colin being somewhat kind at the end but neither the less the feature was more than satisfactory in entertainment.

Devil's Playground

Another relatively low budget zombie film of 2010, this time it's an independent British film starring Danny Dyer most probably because of his recently decent performance in the "Dog House" in 2009. Everything in this movie is very bog standard of the genre, everyone gets infected because of the scientists messing things up and some poor souls have to fight their way to a helicopter or boat.

Other than the non adventures plot the movie doesn't step a foot wrong during the execution of the story and actually tries to offer some twists and turns to keep you interested. The graphics were very impressive for the budget, not Hollywood standard but the explosions and fires seen across London were very well blended.

The only thing that motivated me to watch this film was the fact it said Sean Pertwee was in the film, he is such a great actor and it is a pity he doesn't get more roles and unfortunately he probably won't get many starring roles now he's as bald as a plucked chicken, saying that he has a new movie coming out in 2011 called 4th Reich about Nazi zombies. Sean only makes two appearances in the movie but the second one is hilarious, he basically just leaves all his mates, runs past them and does an amazing jump straight into the driving seat of a speed boat and funks of down a river. He is never seen again but I presume he survives as the zombies hate water.

Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem (AVP 2)

I heard allot of bad things about the second Alien versus Predator and most of it was indeed correct. I first read the original (first in the series) book of AVP and I thought it had so much potential but the films seemed to have borrowed so many ideas from it and at the same time been so bad that the book could probably never be adapted now.

It is exceptionally hard to pick out a favourite part within the film and the only time I felt anything in it was only the part when they hammered that lad and chucked his keys down the drain. That just shows how bad the action is in this; even when there was action I could never understand why the alien blood never seemed to burn through predator equipment or its skin because it did in the first one.

The film wasn't as terrible as I speculated but it was still pretty bad making the first one look brilliant. It would have been so much better if like in the book the films were set in the future on a recently colonised planet, this doesn't seem to be a sci-fi horror but just another horror story with a monster in it. Another problem with this was the fact it was so dark most of the time you could never see the predator alien in full form and only so its head is seen most of the time. Lastly I felt that at least the first in the series had a reoccurring actor, Lance Henrikson which at least made it feel a little like part of the Alien and Predator series.

Bravo Two Zero
½

Sean Bean plays the leader of a British S.A.S. team put together to monitor what goes on behind enemy lines during the gulf war. The first half of the movie follows the troops as they attempt to withdraw from Iraq and head for the Syrian border after they are spotted by some farmers who immediately rat them out to the enemy troops. The second half of the movie focuses on Beans capture and torture which is rather brutal, eventually the poor sod has to lick faeces of his hands after being put to work on latrines.

Richard Sharpe in the twentieth century? Yes please! The film even has the same director as the TV series Sharpe in the form of Tom Clegg and the duo certainly do seem to be on reasonable form; Sean Bean?s acting is brilliant and really keeps you interested during the parts of the movie that feature him alone festering in a cell or when he gets separate from his mates. For myself the film had allot more to say because I find it extremely rare these days to find a film that focuses on the British rather than just America but after all the movie was funded by the BBC.

I knew I was going to like the film from the off, the music at the start consisted of three songs by The Clash and one song by the Sex Pistols which just shows the great taste of the film makers. Best scenes in the movie were when troops had to fight a running battle as they retreated into the desert; Sadam?s troops get a right seeing to but there is just that many they start running out of ammo and just have to get out. Of course my favourite scene of them all was watching Mr. Bean being forced to clean his crap covered hands by licking it all of simply because it made me laugh and also wonder what his character would do to him in revenge if he got the chance.

The Mist
The Mist(2007)
½

It's a standard survivor's story in which a large group of people become trapped within a local supplies shop, the story is based on a Stephen King novel much like the title suggests... it is also directed by Frank Darabont who has done other Stephen King adaptations such as The Shawshank Redemption and The Green Mile. I think this was the perfect direction for a survivor's story film to go in because most of these features are just a group of people boarding up some windows in wait of the Zombie onslaught, in this movie we have so many more elements chucked into the mix. We even have what seems a split society within the small shop of those who are following the religious fanatic and those that I would refer to as being sane.

As the movie started I was somewhat sceptical of the opening scene, it didn't have any dialogue for a good five minutes and got into action almost instantly giving me no reason for what was happening until at least a good hour and a half in and even that was a bit flimsy. When it got going I was pleased, the acting was great although our hero just looks like a poorer version of James Purefoy who would have made an outstanding choice in this if he had more recognition back in 2007. I was upset to begin with that his child was with him in the car because I was picturing another War of the Worlds (2005) scenario, I just feel children and love stories get in the way of everything in action films and ultimately slow the hero's progress down. Luckily the child wasn't too involved as David Drayton pawned him off on a woman who he must have took for some sort of child minder at pretty much any opportunity he could.

The personalities of the characters were pretty bog standard, we have the dad and his child, the love story, the one who gets them in trouble because he disagrees or envies the hero and then we have a whole lot of dumb extras who just get in the way or get picked off in quick succession. There wasn't an ounce of originality in the characters but that's what's so special, for example I seen the young soldier swapping spit with some long lost bitch who was wet for him at high school and I thought "a love story but they aren't banging in some back room, this means they must automatically survive to the end or at least get close". Fortunately the film shocked me within minutes and Christ did her face swell up which made it somewhat humours for me watching the poor lad crying over her, the unpredictability of the characters fates was key to the success of the movie and left an outstandingly diabolical ending for David Drayton.

Insomnia
Insomnia(2002)
½

In this Christopher Nolan directed thriller Will Domer is a distinguished detective who is sent to the Alaskan town of Nightmute to solve a homicide case along with his partner who is called Hap. During the pursuit of the killer Domer accidently shoots Hap but fears no one will believe him that it was an accident because of recent feuds with him. Domer attempts to cover his tracks but unfortunately for him the killer was watching the whole thing and now he has more than just a bog standard murder crime on his hands.

The acting was absolutely fantastic; they could not have picked better people to play the characters. Al Pacino plays the part of Will Domer and not only is he such a likable main character because of how much of a stud he is but it's great watching how he deteriorates throughout the movie because of how little sleep he is having from his ordeals. Robin Williams could be the most convincing part but I think that could be due to the fact his usual line of movies are comedy and some are even children's comedy so when he plays a middle aged maniac who wanted to sodomise a young girl it makes it all the more creepier. The best scene had to be when one of the murder victim's young friends comes on to Pacino during some questioning, it just backs up what I was saying about him being a stud but unfortunately he had to turn her down but not after he winds her up about taking her somewhere "fun".

I found it good that this wasn't just the standard cop story where he solves a mystery or not even one of those bad cop stories when the star "bends" the rules to bring the criminal to justice, in this movie he seems to be simply a man who has lost his way and is looking out for number one because everything around him has fallen apart. There were some simple stuff that also added to the films atmosphere like the scenery and the films setting, I find it more enjoyable when these detective movies are set in some isolated town in the middle of nowhere because it gives the story a more isolated feeling from major civilization giving the characters less options thus making it more scarier. I would recommend this film to anyone who likes any sort of Drama or cop film but even more so to those who are fed up of seeing standard L.A.P.D. stuff that gets rerun after hours.

Braveheart
Braveheart(1995)

This is an epic adventure/war film directed by Mel Gibson who also stars in it; it shows the Scottish struggle for independence in the thirteenth century from the view point of William Wallace and follows him right from the start of his rebellion right up until he gets hung drawn and quartered as the end which is arguably the best part within the whole movie. I'm going to start with all the positives I found while enduring through the entire three hours of pain, Mel Gibson's acting is superb along with all the cast but obviously Brian Cox is by far the best actor in the feature. The best scenes again involve the death of William Wallace at the end and when the Scots get all those arrows in their anus's while taunting the English. The directing was great and all the action scenes were well done but unfortunately this film still visually tortures me every time I have the misfortune to see it on television, but why?

I just can't watch this film because of sheer principle, no matter how good the action scenes may seem or how good they could have been. It's yet another film that is funded by an American film company portraying the English/British getting beaten in a battle or war and I just can't tolerate it anymore, the battle of Bannockburn and in fact the war shown in the movie is massively inaccurately shown. I done some research into just how much this was actually full of crap, for example the battle of Stirling Bridge is depicted as being fought on open land but in actual fact the reason it won was because the Bridge provided a bottleneck in which the English could only funnel so many men across it which limits movements and how many men can engage at once.

If I was to make such a movie set in the Scottish wars of independence as this it would make sense to make one with the most heroic and famous battles in it so to me it would make sense to depict the battle of Dupplin Moor which shows a very small English force (more outnumbered than the Scottish at Bannockburn) defeating the much larger Scottish force with the casualties being 33 English dead and up to 13,000 casualties for the Scottish. The problem is that I would think that the battle would be accused of ' war crimes ' or ' a massacre ' by any American film company because it being on the side of the English so I have come to the conclusion that this film was made because America see Scotland as freedom fighters just like they were in their own War of Independence? This assumption makes perfect sense to me considering America funded the IRA because they were also seen as freedom fighters, some reward for helping in Iraq.

Something about Mel Gibson which I also noticed as well, he was in the news for being racist a while back and now when I look he's made the films Braveheart and The Patriot which just shows me exactly what he could possibly be thinking of England. With major British film companies basically collapsed it seems I will never see another war film in our favour and will have to settle for the good old films like Zulu (which even that got craped on a bit with the American funded sequel Zulu Dawn showing a catastrophic defeat). In conclusion the thing I can say this film has done for the United Kingdom is create yet more segregation; I was on holiday in Edinburgh with my farther and some guy randomly approached him in a pub and just come out with "We give you a good hammering at Bannockburn" looking for a fight or something and its very scary business as aye was only very young at the time, possibly another reason why I have such a grudge for this film because that event stuck with me.

Anyway before giving it a straight thumbs down consider how it is for people living in England because I know all my friends in the area I live (which happens to be right next to the border) pretty much think the same. If you need any links for me to back up anything I've said I will be more than happy to paste them in the comments.

The Hound of the Baskervilles

A classic Sherlock Holmes story retold by the Hammer Horror production company, Sir Henry Baskerville is considered to be the last of his blood line after two of his descendants were killed on the moors by a wild beast or possibly an escaped convict who is loose in the area. Sherlock Holmes and Watson are brought in to protect Henry from meeting the same fate as his predecessors and to solve the mystery of the murders.

I was thrilled that Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing and Andre Morel were all in the same movie, they are defiantly the cream of the Hammer Horror actors. Peter Cushing managed to capture Sherlock's character perfectly and much better than Robert Downy, Jr. ever will and as for Andre Morel playing Watson he may have done the best portrayal of Watson I have seen to date. I was also pleasantly surprised to see that John Le Mesurier played a part as the butler in this movie because of the simple fact I love him in Dad's Army playing Arthur Wilson.

So I've seen a few adaptations of this novel before but I couldn't help but be surprised by the ending, it was perfect and unsuspected mainly because you have other actors within the film who have been known for playing villains in many features before and after this. The setting of the moors is always key to all adaptations I have seen, it needs to give a feeling of isolations and scary in a way the characters fear it from inside the safety of the mansion and that you can join in with that feeling. The scenery for the whole movie was great; plenty of smoke and darkness like you would expect from a Hammer production, this may be one of their best adaptations I have seen.

Keeping Mum
Keeping Mum(2006)
½

The movie starts forty three years from the present day within the film; it shows a psychotic woman who thinks it's genuinely ok to murder people if she doesn't like them. When we return to present day the film depicts a family that is going down the spout, they are then joined by a nanny whose job is to pick the sprog up from school and clean the house but she has a deadly secret that she is keeping from the rest of the family.

The cast was one the films strong points, I am a big fan of Rowan Atkinson and Black Adder so I was excited for this movie from the beginning but one of the biggest surprises for me was Patrick Swayze. He was absolutely hilarious and the scene when he was teaching golf to Rowans wife in a sexual manner just had me in stitches and the fact this wasn't one of Swayze's usual roles made it all the more funnier. Another thing that stood out for me was that Rowan Atkinson is in his fifties in this movie but a bit of hair die and he would look in his mid thirties I reckon.

The movies score was key to the atmosphere and setting within the small village in the country, it give that light hearted effect that showed the film was never too serious at any point. I think the ending was rather predictable though especially as the name of the film practically gives it away before you open the DVD box but that was about the only problem I could pick out of this and I would recommend this to anyone that likes the darker genre of comedies.

Clash of the Titans
½

When warriors of Argos come to the conclusion the gods are no longer needed they decide to desecrate a statue of Zeus, unfortunately the gods need the prayers of man to keep them immortal so Hades was been granted permission to teach the mortals a lesson. He gives them the ultimatum to either sacrifice the princess Andromeda or have the city of Argos be destroyed by the great Kraken, they have seven days to comply but one man is determined to find a solution to destroy the Kraken.

The cast was just pure amazing! Allot of my favourite actors were in the movie, Liam Neeson, Pete Postlethwaite, Jason Flemyng and even a bit of Vincent Vegan and they all acted brilliantly. I have to say my favourite performance in the movie was without a doubt Liam Cunningham playing Solon and this could possibly be his best display ever so far, he was hilarious at time like when he snapped the flute and chucked it on the fire and when he didn't want to travel on the giant scorpion because he argued it just tried to kill him.

Action scenes were everywhere and I roughly knew what order they were going to come in with watching the original, the giant scorpions were just amazing except it seemed to me a handful of men shouldn't have taken them down but I suppose it's just a film. The CGI was pretty good; they seemed to get the shading on the creatures just right to blend in to the scenery which I think is absolutely key with the amount of CGI they used. The best scene had to be simply when Purseus picked up the metal owl and asked Liam Cunningham what it was for? I had to laugh with it being one of the main gifts from the gods on the original movie.

Like always almost every remake has its problems, even though the main actor was English which is pretty fresh for a film of such stature and Hollywood funding I found he just wasn't the right man to be cast. He seemed to modern in a sense and no one had a skin head back then, he should had long hair like the original Perseus and another thing about him was that I think they simply cast Sam Worthington because they were looking for a studly figure to star. Anyway I had allot of fun watching and allot of the time I was smiling at some of the dialogue and that I could reminisce with the original in a non rip of way, I consider this one of the few successful remakes of the 21st century.

Right at Your Door
½

The basic plot of this Drama film directed by Chris Gorak is as follows, two dirty bombs are exploded in Los Angeles releasing lethal doses of toxins. Brad goes in search of his wife who is at work in the area in which the bombs were exploded but his journey was wasted, he is then joined by man who was working in the local area and both must seal the house before the toxins travel to the area. When the house is safe and the ashes start to fall on his house his wife turns up but she has already come in contact with the toxins, Brad has a decision to make to let her in or make her suffer outside.

At the start of the movie he hears the news of the bombs and immediately attempts to contact his wife who was in the area of the bomb blast but unfortunately couldn't get in touch because all the telephone lines were busy. I felt I could really connect with the film because that was exactly what I was doing when Derrick Bird went trigger happy in the town I live in and all the lines were blocked just like in the film which shows it has a real sense of realism. Personally I don't think some gaffer tape is going to keep toxic waste out of a home but it had a certain atmosphere about it like when they seal a house up in a zombie flick; I think the government will have told people to do this to make them feel safer in their home.

What's most spectacular about the movie is that it sums up the governments state of mind perfectly, it shows how much they really do care about the individual which as depicted in this feature is not very much at all. The acting was splendid it seemed just like how anyone would act under such circumstances and the score was also wonderful, it really reminded me of the sort of music I used to hear in the film and video games of Silent Hill. Fast camera angles give this film yet more of a realistic feel in fact it reminded of Uwe Boll's latest film "Rampage" in which it tries to capture the same feeling (actually a very good film is "Rampage"). I like most films that involve people holding out in a house so it was no surprise to me that I liked this movie.

The Mystical Adventures of Billy Owens

The movie follows a school boy and his friends as an ordinary day turns into ' adventure 'and ' action ', They spend most of their days in school getting bullied by a kid called Kurt... After class Kurt chases them into an old antique shop in which they discover a Rowdy Roddy Piper sitting behind the till, the hero Billy then purchases a magic wand by accident and soon discovers he is destined to save the earth.

The first minute of the film shows Piper and a friend in a boat surrounded by fog; all was good until the dragon showed up. It was the worst special effects I have seen in years, I sh!t you not I have seen porno's with better CGI than this, "Lord of the G-strings" and "Play-mate of the Apes" had way more and better CGI within the film than this and much much much better action scenes if you catch my drift. I know I said in my last review that graphics didn't matter that much but the dragon in this is almost unwatchable due to the amount of pixels you can see.

The directing was shocking and you can tell most of it was done on a single take; some characters even glance at the camera at the end of a scene acknowledging whether they have acted the part right, the child actors are no better and make the film beyond all doubt one of the worst I have seen this year. Roddy Piper must have done this for free there is no way they had enough money to pay him; this would have worked so much better as an episode of "Hey Arthur".

Empire of the Ants

Based on a H.G. Wells novel of the same name, Empire of the ants offers what would seem an insect version of Godzilla. What's responsible for the enlargement of these ants isn't very original because it comes in the shape of the good old toxic waste leakage although some may argue this is original in its own rights if the novel was wrote in 1905 before the idea had been used before. A group of people touring an island in search of buying plots of land stumble across the beasts but can't escape because their boat is already infested with ants. After the party travel through the jungle to reach safety they realise that the human inhabitants of the island are also in league with the ants but have to pay them a tribute of vast amounts of sugar to insure their survival.

The acting was seriously atrocious but for me that was about as bad as it got, contrary to what allot of people think about this movie I loved the special effects. The effects themselves mainly contained actual footage of real ants edited into filmed jungle and any close up shots are plastic ants covering the helpless individual, I never really look at the effects of films much because I believe it leaves more room for the imagination and story unlike films like Avatar which do everything for you. You can really see the story is the work of H.G. Wells, the idea was superb and the only other time I have seen giant ants is in films where people have been shrunk as opposed to the ants being enlarged.

A concept I admired allot is how the movie points out how smart ants are and how much of a threat they can pose, it's a fact ants herd Aphids like we herd cattle and they grow fungus deep underground much like we cultivate crops, in my opinion they are much more intelligent than Dolphins and actual have been classed as ' Nomadic ' by experts. Some bad points I couldn't help but laugh at were the scenes that included the ant vision and in most of the stock footage you could see the ant's put their legs on the side of the glass tank in which they were being filmed. As this is a rather original story then it must be considered fresh in a sense but I would sure like to see a remake of this.

Warlords (Tau ming chong)
½

The year is 1861 and the Taiping Rebellion is at its height, the opening sequence tells us that the Taiping owns half of imperial China but that's not really as much as you think considering Great Britain had just claimed a large portion of China a year earlier in the Opium War. Jet Li plays a general who has been defeated in battle through betrayal; he manages to recruit eight hundred armed villagers and works his way back into a fighting position to which he can again challenge the soldiers loyal to the Taiping Rebellion.

Jet Li acts brilliantly throughout the film as you watch his character change; it displays a man who has become vulnerable to the craving for power and greed that might possibly prove to be his ultimate downfall. There is an attempt to create some emotional scenes at various points but I couldn't quite get into it because it was just them crying over how their honour had gone to seed. Action scenes were good and give a brilliant display of the kind of tactics China used in this period although they are very out dated using swords in the eighteen hundreds and any muskets shown were used to poor effect.

I've seen many foreign films of this genre now and this wasn't one of Jet Li's best films but it was great in its own right. My biggest problem with the movie was the fact the British played a large part in helping squash the rebellion but don't even get so much as a mention throughout, personally I think was actually a good strategy for marketing the film because looking at the statistics for the first Opium war there was only sixty nine British deaths and up to 20,000 Qing Dynasty casualties so I would presume we aren't in their good books and it may have affected the films viewing figures and sales?

The Conqueror Worm (Witchfinder General)

Set in the travesty of the English Civil War when witch craft was at a high the film follows Mathew Hopkins, a famous parliamentary employed Witch finder who is portrayed in this movie by Vincent Price. Unfortunately for the Witch finder he shafts the wife of a civil war cavalry man, technically the young soldier is deserting but goes on his quest to find the witch finder none the less in search of revenge.

Some outstanding acting from Vincent Price really brings the movie alive, he plays his part calmly and cautiously putting all his faith in the fact the law is on his side, he travels from town to town accusing witches and seems to target the younger of the township and has them sent to his room for ' questioning ', the dirty old man. You really come to feel for some of the poor unfortunate people that get burned or have their loved ones burned, there is a tremendous amount of screaming from the women as they are being tortured of being finally lowered into the flames and supposedly being cast back to the devil.

I loved the medieval score that was used, it fit perfectly combined with the country side and the round heads prancing about on horseback and the towns and costumes seems to be relatively authentic. The movie has to be a classic but it wasn't all perfect, most of its faults come from actual historical fact. Mathew Hopkins was actually only twenty seven when he died but it portrayed by an aging Vincent Price and also Mathew Hopkins was said to have died of tuberculosis or some people say he was himself accused of witch craft and was tried by water and drowned, neither of these are his final ending in Withchhunter General.

Red Cliff (Chi Bi)
½

The battle of Red Cliff or more accurately known as "the battle of Chi Bi" was a decisive battle fought during the war of the three kingdoms period on the sides of the coalition of the factions Shu and Wu against the kingdom of Wei; the film depicts the build up to the battle leaving the actual battle for the sequel Red Cliff 2. Even with the major conflict not being within the movie there is still tremendous amounts of action and plenty of Characters that I have come to know through my childhood of playing the Dynasty Warriors series...

The acting was pretty standard I couldn't pick out any characters I thought stood out but I am going to compare acting to that of the film The Three Kingdoms: Resurrection of the Dragon which is another major film of the same year about the very same war that shares many of the same characters and events (I had to review it through a blog because it wasn't found on Rotten Tomatoes). Anyway the acting in Red Cliff was not a scratch on that of The Three Kingdoms but then again this didn't need that sort of acting ability with the film as the goal is focusing mainly on the action.

There are so many similarities between this and its counterpart The Three Kingdoms; they both have the same scene depicting Zhao Yun rescuing Liu Bei's son and most importantly they both movies have the same amount of blood. The amount of blood spilled when a poor unfortunate has a spear thrust in his face is similar to that of a two litre bottle of Ribena popping all over the shop but not in a silly way, it's all done magically and looks very real, in some occasion we see the armour splitting before the rush of liquids. One advantage I noticed is that Chinese historical films can be allot more superior to some western ones because of the large amount of population they can use in the extras, I mean there is a serious amount of people involved in the battle scenes not including the ones that are computer generated.

Visually this is one of the most beautiful films I have had the fortune to witness, not just the battles I get to see from a bird's eye view but the cities and landscapes were just stunning, I even found this move visually appetising than Avatar which is saying something. For me personally the greatest thing was to pick out the parts of all the individual battles and the way the characters were dressed and compare them to that of the Dynasty Warriors video game and that of The Three Kingdoms: Resurrection of the Dragon. Anyone who wants to see vast action scenes I would recommend this to and anyone who is interested in a more emotional and character involvement film I would recommend The Three Kingdoms (2008). I simply can't wait to see the sequel!

Edge of Darkness

When Mel Gibson isn't beating the English up in historically inaccurate films he usually plays the role of man seeking revenge, personally I think Gibson excels in these roles. This time he is a policeman whose daughter has been murdered for what seems like no reason other than a standard hit and run. Like usual the hero must put together a series of clues that will eventually lead to the person who he needs to kill to avenge his daughter's death.

The storyline doesn't have much originality in the sense I've seen the revenge thing done many times before but the reason for his daughter being popped off was different as it involved lethal amounts of radiation and some nuclear weapons. It was all well executed with the clues and the bad guys, some of my highlights were when Gibson bashed his way through a window in some public toilets to escape some badass men in suits and the fact he seemed to be taking to himself on a regular basis throughout the feature.

The acting was very good; in fact Gibson is on fine form and gets better throughout, I loved it when you could see how weak he was becoming as the film progressed. Ray Winston also played a good character although I thought they overdone the "lets meet somewhere private" which means a bench in a park that you seen in like every film of this sort. One particularly big surprise was that Ray Winston wasn't exactly what you expect from him in this movie judging on the roles he usually plays in blockbuster s. I think I would have enjoyed the film move if "Taken" with Liam Neeson hadn't been released as that just seems like a much superior version of Edge of Darkness.

Hell Comes to Frogtown
½

Hell comes to Frogtown is a post-apocalyptic film that stars the wrestler Roddy Piper, not only do we have all the usually elements of a futuristic earth wasteland but a large percent of the male survivors are all infertile. The government capture Roddy Piper after he has left a large string of pregnancies across the wasteland and fixes him up with a chastity belt that says "government equipment" on it as they have now claimed his nuts. With a stack of explosives strapped to his wanger he must fulfil a contract given to him to impregnate as many wastelanders as possible but there is also mutated frogs lying in wait within this devastated world.

With a story line like that what else could you possibly want? Most of piper's acting is sound, there is a few occasions when he starts shouting that look pretty bad but then he does very well considering his usual line of business is wrestling. As other actors go there are mainly just stacks of hot females waiting about for Roddy to give them a good seeing to, most of the other actors after that are just gigantic Frogs who also have sins for the flesh, human flesh...

The costumes of the frog people were amazing for a cult film in 1987, they had perfectly looking slimy skin and there was allot of robotics going on under the masks in the eyes and mouth. I Laughed allot during this, just looking at the storyline you can tell it's not all that of a serious movie. Some memorable moments were when Roddy got excited because some scientists were injecting a drug into a wastelander to make her "ovulate" also Roddy is so much of a stud he even acquires the nickname Stud of some of the women and manages to pull a female frog! In a nut shell this film somehow reminded me of a cross between "Children of Men" staring Clive Owen and "Super Mario Brothers", not totally sure why though.

Ghosts of Goldfield

Pretty standard story line for a horror, a bunch of teenagers end up in a mansion or large building with a restless spirit who is unable to pass over to the other side because of some silly reason. The kids get axed and that's pretty much all that happens, all the usual things are included that just spell a recipe for disaster in teenager infested horror's.

The acting is pretty standard of these sorts of films, which means pretty bad... Notable bad performances were the ghost, every time she opened her mouth it was a case of verbal diarrhea. There was only one performance I admired in particular which is Roddy Piper! obviously because his unforgettable performance in "They Live". The DVD cover of Ghosts of Goldfield has Roddy Piper's name at the top as if he's staring in the movie but he must appear in it for a maximum of ten minutes if you add all his scenes up.

There wasn't an ounce of originality within the feature, the kids act like a bunch of pricks and it's obvious they are all going to get a face full of ghost so Roddy doesn't bother to put them through his pubs bar worktop and just gives them the key to the haunted hotel instead. Like usual all the teenagers die in order of who is the biggest prick or who is the biggest stud and manages to shaft some females. One of the girl's to go happens to be a thief and a slag so she bites the dust first. The last person to go is always the innocent girl who shouldn't really be there; it's been a rare occasion to actually see the bloke survive when you also have a smoking hot virgin in the film.

There is one annoying character in particular. You always get the one in every movies of this calibre who jumps out from behind a cupboard to scare the rest senseless and it just becomes so annoying, it would be more of a surprise if it was actually the ghost doing this within the first twenty minutes. Some of the directing within the movie is absolute diabolical, I don't want to be fed the same crappy camera angles and murder scenes in every horror movie, well at least not one from the year 2007 anyway. In comparison to the movie "See No Evil" staring another wrestler in the shape of Kane and also set in a hotel this is about ten times worse; at least the deaths in "See No Evil" were original and made you cringe.

Another problem which stuck with me that I feel necessary to share are that in the flash backs Roddy Piper's side burns are blatantly stuck on with no more nails or something; I couldn't take it seriously in the slightest. Even with all the problems I have listed I shall still award Ghosts of Goldfield a generous ten percent, the only thing earning it this is because of that ten minutes with Roddy (one percent a minute) and the man doesn't look a day older since he stared in the classic "They Live".

AVH: Alien vs. Hunter
½

After two strange objects fall from the sky a group of people living in the area become subject to a hunting game between the Alien and the Hunter... They have to make a set of decisions, either to run, fight or hide because their lives are depending on it. Not really an original story line but then if I was comparing it to Alien Vs Predator 2 I would say that was even worse.

Like most asylum films this only had a budget of $500,000 so I try to be as lenient as possible with their films especially when AVP:R had a budget of $40,000,000 and couldn't even hire more famous actors than the asylum version. I went through the cast for Requiem and couldn't even find a single actor I had heard of; obvious the biggest name on the project will have been Dan O'Bannon who helped write the feature.

In Alien Vs Hunter (AVH) however, the film immediately starts with a scene of William Katt going for a jog with some rock beats on in the background. William Katt stared in many films such as "House" which is one of my personal favourite horror films so for me AVH craps all over Requiem as far as the cast is concerned. I believe William acted to the best of his ability with what he was offered in the movie and his acting alone and perhaps one of two other supporting roles may have held this film together.

Fair enough we don't have the special effects that perhaps Requiem has here but at least we get to see more of the monsters in full form instead of just seeing their heads peering out the shadows every now and then. Basically in conclusion for almost a hundredth of the budget that AVP:R used I prefer this much more and it gives a look on how outstandingly well William Katt has aged considering he is almost sixty.

The Scorpion King 2

A prequel to a prequel in some respects, the scorpion king 2 is set in the younger days of his life (probably so they didn't have to spend all their money hiring Dwayne Johnson). This is a classic revenge story in which we have the scorpion king's farther murdered by the man who becomes emperor, after years of learning the necessary skills to wreak havoc on the villain he finally returns to defeat him but unfortunately the bad guy seems to have acquired some special powers so Mr. Scorpion must travel to a far away land to recover a special weapon to destroy him.

The acting in this film is absolutely diabolical, it loses all atmosphere built up on many occasions because of how awful the acting is. I absolute hate it with these films when they pick the main villain's actor because in real life his is a "martial arts expert", the villain in this is just an absolute terrible actor and I'm glad every second he is of the screen. One of the few good actors was the man who played the Poet, he has real potential and I could see a hint of Sean Pertwee in him, another actor I wish I could have seen more of was the man who was leading the army of the bad guys, he was wearing what can only be described as Roman armour and all I was thinking was Wow! He would make an excellent villain compared to his master.

The young man who was playing Dwayne Johnsons replacement (the scorpion king) was also pretty bad at acting but I can see why they chose him because in certain lights you can certainly see he looks like Dwayne but unfortunately that wasn't enough and I found myself laughing at some of his dialogue. As storylines go I thought there was more adventuring involved in the second instalment of the Scorpion King than there was in the first, there was obviously allot of money gone into this production as far as direct to DVD titles go, all this film need was better actors and it may have been something decent.

Taken
Taken(2009)

Liam Neeson plays a retired government ' preventer ', which he claims that it means he stops bad things happening. His daughter wants to go on a trip to Europe but she must get her dads permission as that's how it's done when parents are separated, after much hassle Liam finally decides to let her go as long as she keeps in contact on a regular basis. Once his daughter gets to Paris she is practically immediately picked up by some sex trafficking Europeans to do their dirty bidding, Liam goes nuts and immediately gives chance using his "set of special skills" from his previous employment to locate her.

The acting is just spot on, Liam Neeson is just superb and certainly brings this film to life. The major difference with this to other action films is the story line, it's not just some action film with a villain who wants to blow something up of conquer world. Sex Trafficking is something that is very common in Europe and that just adds to the realism of this film, the next best thing is Liam's gung ho attitude. Even though he may be just a normal family man it's just marvellous how far he will go to retrieve his daughter, no one is spared, he must have popped a few dozen guys and even a woman to achieve his goal.

Not many other actors could master this role, what's so special about Liam Neeson is his powerful voice which I believe is essential considering he is in most of the scenes on his own or with a bunch of bad guys. His voice was most defiantly the reason to which Mr. Neeson was picked to play Abraham Lincoln in his forthcoming film. The set of clues that are obtained in the chase to recover his daughter are wrote with great detail, you can just tell a lot of thought and imagination went into writing the story.

The action sequences are some of the best I have seen from a film of similar story lines in some time, I loved the part where the land rover full of Traffickers crashed into the digger and the electrocution scene brilliant combined with Neeson's lack of mercy. In all a brilliant action film which I would recommend to anyone in search of a film in which you really want the lead character to succeed because that was the feeling I got as you form a sympathetic relationship with the character.

The Scorpion King

The somewhat prequel to the Mummy, the scorpion king follows Dwayne Johnson through the events that lead up to when he finally becomes the ruler of the huge armies. The scorpion king intends to destroy the evil that is known as Memnon from conquering all the known land in Egypt. He is hired by the last surviving states to assassinate Memnon's sorcerer but is ultimately betrayed and his life is made allot harder in achieving his goal.

I have said before that I am a fan of Dwayne Johnson (but not wrestling), I think if you are looking for an action film with a likable main character Dwayne is a sensible choice because you know exactly what you are going to get from him. Perhaps this spin-off was made just to make money from the crazed wrestling fans who crave some "rocks elbow" or such crap but I still enjoyed it for what it was and there is just an endless supply of action throughout.

I still think the Egyptian atmosphere was present to a certain degree but there wasn't any of the accents or Egyptian language or even much hieroglyphics which was a little bit of a letdown but even with this the acting was solid enough to make up for anything the film may be lacking. As well as Dwayne beating up anyone he sees as a threat we also have the inevitable love interest in which he becomes friendly with Memnom's as we now know Sorceress.

There were some other pleasant surprises in the film including Bernard Hill who I admire and he may have possibly been one of my favourite performances within this. As far spin-offs or sequels usually go I rather enjoyed this action based adventure movie, you know what you're going to get from Dwayne Johnson movie that have swords on the front cover and that's just great sometimes.

Inkheart
Inkheart(2009)
½

Brendan Fraser has the rare gift known as "Silver Tongue" granting him the power of making books he reads become real and physical in front of him. Unfortunately to restore the balance of something leaving the book he reads something must then enter the book to replace it, in this case Brendan's poor wife. He must then go on a quest to find the last copy of the book and read her back out of it and along the way meet some old friends and enemies.

Brendan Frazer himself has put up a good display of acting in this and I am starting to admire him more and more, maybe it's just his hair style, hair transplants or no transplants it's still amazing! Paul Bettany is possible my favourite actor within the movie, you seem to like his character even though he frequently upsets Brendan. The cast as overall was amazing, we have actors like Andy Serkis known for his role as Golem in Lord of the Rings but then we have actors such as Stephen Graham (This is England, Public Enemies) who has little or no lines in the film, that alone just shows you how big and brilliant the cast is.

I got a real feel for the adventure that unfolded, the idea was great and especially as the film is based on a book, a book that is about reading books and bringing them to life. There were a few unlikelihoods of the story like Brendan somehow keeping his gift of silver tongue a secret during his whole life but it's nothing to disrupt the story line. Some people might be dissatisfied with the adaptation from book to film but that's ok for me because I haven't read the book of Inkheart.

Léon: The Professional

After all poor Mathilda's family are blown away by Gary Oldman and co because of some dope dealings she manages to get taken in by Leon who is a professional Hitman or "cleaner" as he prefers to call it. In exchange for being trained to also be a cleaner Mathilda offers to clean Leon's house and do all his chores. After months of service to Leon we are lead to the moment when she wants revenge for her poor family and must confront Sir Gary Oldman.

Jean Reno plays a very good and convincing role that shows both a soft and harsh side to Leon. As much as I thought Natalie Portman's acting was brilliant I almost found her character somewhat irritating but I suppose that's just part of the role she had to play. Of course like always I believe Gary Oldman to have the best acting skills out of anyone in this film and he displayed them in fine form. His character was so deranged and unpredictable you could feel the tension that his own Hench men had just being around him, he was certainly not the type bloke you want to get a simple math question wrong around but his moments of magic were defiantly his acting when he bit into the tablet or drug he has sometimes.

It felt good to have the standard Luc Besson score just like the one he uses later on in the Fifth Element, it creates a brilliant atmosphere within the feature especially to create certain emotions when a particular character is perhaps sad or in danger. I can never understand why I don't hear similar film scores outside the world of Luc Besson because they are so effective but then I suppose it wouldn't add to his uniqueness if every film maker used them.

One of the touchiest parts in the film is the fact 12 year old Mathilda repeatedly tells Leon she has fallen in love with him, in every one of these scenes you can smell the tension and see Jean Reno's desire to escape the situation. The film was almost perfect, just lacking in some small areas like what's the likely hood of a Hitman training a 12 year old girl how to kill and then there is his employer who lets her work with him in his line of employment. Maybe he never thought she would actually attempt to use anything he had told her and was just saying it to shut her up.

The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor
½

The problem with the plot on the Dragon Emperor is simply the fact you can't call Jet Li in this a Mummy but rather just a terracotta warrior come back from the dead so I find it rather defeats the object of the film. Instead of going to Egypt where Mummies are made our Heroes make a journey to China to put down another villain threatening to enslave the earth, we have some reoccurring characters and a grown up Alex O'Connell in the film.

Let's start with the cast, like everyone is aware of we only have two reoccurring actors but four reoccurring characters. That's because Alex has grown up and they have changed the actor of Eve which was a complete disappointment, fair play to her replacement she acted to her full ability but it just wasn't the same. I found the only thing that made me reminisce about the first Mummy was the sound of Jonathans voice, without him this film would have been a lost cause. So perhaps it wasn't the films fault that they couldn't get some of the actors back after so long but they couldn't even get the simple things right, when watching the Mummy returns then this right after is just sounds so stupid that Alex's accent turns from British to American, we don't even get a stupid excuse like in the 2010 Wolfman where we are told he's spent all his early years in America. This means to me that my favourite acting performance comes from Liam Cunningham who plays the pilot who ferries the cast around on occasion.

Another few of the things to anger me were the amount of times characters were referring to jet Li as a mummy, it seemed so obvious they were trying to instil this into the viewers mind because even the makers probably knew there were a lack of mummies in this. It almost seemed in a sense the makers were also aware that this film was going to be bad because I personally thought they overdone the humour so much they were trying to adopt a non serious approach to the film which would give it the freedom for the whole plot to be exaggerated and to make up for what the film lacked in other areas. The first and second Mummy had a little bit of light humour but wasn't dependant on it because there was enough going on within the storyline.

Some of the action scenes were impressive, again vastly over done from its predecessor with Yetis and such but I still felt the film never really kicked off until the fight scene at the great wall with the terracotta army and the undead slaves. All the action and communists just made it look like it was trying so hard to equal to that of Indiana Jones or even be it that it just made it look cheesy. Even with allot of these faults I feel the last thirty minutes of the film saved it from being terrible and I am even excited to here Maria Bello say that there will "absolutely" be another Mummy film because at the end it of the day it's Brendan Fraser and co kicking ass. To conclude, Brendan Fraser's hair transplants are looking good...

The Mummy Returns
½

With the Mummy being released from the story line it had to follow as its predecessor being a remake this gives more freedom of the story line as the rules it must follow have become much less. This time we have gigantic battles, adventures across huge distances of land and almost a complete cast of reoccurring characters from the original.

Not only do I rather dislike eighty percent of love stories that are woven into such films which to be honest I actually found bearable in the 1999 version of the Mummy but when they add the child from the relationship in the next instalment I feel as if this limits the story line and holds the characters back even more that just a simple romance. There are almost all the same cast that survived from the original movie with the added addition of Dwayne Johnson as the scorpion king, I admire Dwayne Johnson's acting abilities despite having a rather big dislike for wrestling and I was please to see he didn't use his stupid ' trademark special wrestling move ' within the Mummy returns even though he bashes a few sculls in the opening battle scenes.

I find with allot of sequels that they tend to go overboard with the story line, this can sometimes be acceptable because they can't just create something as limited as the original and they need to take it a step further. The story in this in my eyes is an acceptable elaboration on the first, we do have allot of massive battles and scenes so big they are reliant on special effects which may not be faithful to the first movie but I think this only builds on the story line as the 1999 remake was good because it added that sense of adventure that the original 1932 feature and the hammer versions didn't have to offer as much.

The film wasn't perfect and it wasn't as good as its predecessor, some of my criticisms include that although this is labelled "The Mummy" we see very little of Imhotep in his mummified form which I think is what these films should be all about, also this does slightly take the focus of Imhotep with all the characters worrying about ' The Rock (Scorpion King) ' destroying the world. In all as far as sequels go I find this more than acceptable.

The Mummy
The Mummy(1999)

What is great about this film is that it takes the original storyline and also a lot of features from both films and combines them. The storyline gets even more complex, Imhotep now wants to "plunge the world into darkness", I don't know why he would want to do this I thought getting his girl might have been enough. When watching remakes of films I usually think what is the point of remaking this classic? But I respect the 99 version of the Mummy because I believed there was more that could be done with this tale. Now we have the resources to film the entire film in one period of time and also entirely in Egypt can attempt to give the Mummy an extra element and sense of adventure its predecessors didn't have a chance at.

There was a few good acting performances in this, my personal favourite being Benny, the poor sod who has to become the Mummies servant. Oded Fehr is also good as the Medjai warrior in this and makes an excellent stud of a man whore in Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigalo. Yet again it is expected as this film is American funded for the title role to be taken away from the English aerologist and give to a hard as nails yank but I could live with it and didn't really think too much into it as it usually winds me up in all other films I have watched.

This definably offers a different view of the film the mummy and has had the most action of a series of film so far, even though we don't have the classic Imhotep I didn't really think a Christopher Lee or Boris Karloff style Mummy would fit in well in this feature.

The Mummy
The Mummy(1959)

Yet again the Mummy has been accidently resurrected by breaking the curse on his tomb except this time the Mummy has to be brought to England in a crate by a servant of the gods. Other differences include the Mummy must destroy all the people who entered the tomb and broke the seal and also the famous scene in which the villain has his tongue cut out during "mummification while being alive!" later to be reused on the 1999 version.

Christopher Lee certainly makes the Mummy his own and masters all the movements that you would imagine an undead man might posses. What's essentially different about Christopher lee's Mummy to Boris's is that he gave the Mummy a conscience like he only wanted to be with his bird and didn't really want to kill all these people. Our leading man comes in the shape of Peter Cushing whose performance is excellent, but it's always the same when Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee are in the same film. To me it's like the best duo possible.

If there are any faults with the film the only ones I can think of are the film seemed a little limited to studio and not even stock footage was used but saying that the settings such as the camp where the very realistic and sparse.

The Mummy
The Mummy(1932)

The first version of the Mummy staring Boris Karloff is an epic that's set in Egypt in 1932 in which the resurrected Imhotep plans to also resurrect his dead lover for who he has had a thing with for over 4000 years or so. Basically Mr. Imhotep was a bad man and was buried alive for shafting the Pharaohs bitch so he is a bit pissed upon resurrection meaning our heroes need to put a stop to him and also save the woman he has chosen to be the sacrifice in order to bring his woman back, this is basically the story line for all the versions of the mummy with other bits added or taken away.

Boris Karloff certainly ' brings the mummy to life ', he has obviously had allot of experience playing the evil creature in films before and continues to nails it on the head in this feature. Obviously he is a nasty bit of work in this film but he keeps a civil attitude with the only hint of his evilness being in his lack of emotions that makes you think "maybe this dude isn't of this earth?" The rest of the acting was fairly decent but I couldn't think of any other outstanding performances.

It's fairly obvious that allot of this wasn't actually filmed in Egypt but rather in a studio somewhere in England but the use of stock footage, scenery and a couple of what looked like Egypt scenes impressed me to the point it captured the feel of being there. I believe all versions of the Mummy have something to other someone, Boris Karloff has his own take on it and so does Christopher Lee to great effect.

Flight of the Phoenix
½

I started watching this thinking it would be total poop but I didn't think it was as bad as what most people say. We start with a plane journey and from the off we have a bit of Johnny Cash playing in the background which made me think someone making this has good taste and interwoven it well, the classic Egyptian sort of Arabic score created a real feel in some places that made us feel lonely and isolated from the world.

In terms of story line we have no real deviation from the original, in fact it probably get a little worse in a sense. They should never have tried to involve a love story between Dennis Quaid and Miranda Otto, I think that's the real difference here as I felt the original was more of a 'lads' movie than this. The acting was pretty decent; I'm a big fan of Dennis Quaid and an even bigger fan of Hugh Laurie and I also think Giovanni Ribisi's acting was good even though I stand by the fact he was the wrong choice for the German aircraft designer. He offered a new nastier side to the character but ultimately couldn't combine this with the charm Hardy Kruger had to offer.

Even though all the famous scenes were included from the original film and even some of the same dialogue there are still a few memorable moments from this like when they are going to speak to the Mongols or whatever, they use a famous piece of music to great effect that created a superb atmosphere. With some enjoyable parts to the film this is still almost an exact copy of the original and cannot be considered fresh because well, it has been done in the same way before...

The Flight of the Phoenix
½

This truly is a classic survivor's story and defiantly one of the best out there. We have a group of men from different ethnic backgrounds (mainly British and American) who come together through a plane crash. The plane crash happens to be in the middle of a desert with no life for miles around, there are tremendous amounts of factors that are preventing them from leaving the crash site including lack of water, magnetic rocks messing up compass's and even simply being right handed can land you in the wrong destination when it comes to walking to the nearest waterhole.

We have a rather amazing cast in this film but then it needs to be if we are only going to be focusing on the same group throughout the duration. Richard Attenborough was perhaps my favourite character in this, he seemed to always radiate the depressed feeling in the camp but in a sense you're not being bored by the fellow. Hardy Kruger played the German who claims to be an aeroplane designer; he was cast perfectly for this. He had a smartness that was crossed with always feeling a lack of trust for the man which in a sense proves true in the end but like Attenborough said "he never tried to hide anything", unfortunately I think his role was terribly cast in the remake of Flight of the Phoenix in 2004.

The feature was very well directed, you really come to know almost all the characters in such a short space of time and even though the film is set mainly in the same thirty by thirty square metre piece of sand it really does feel like an adventure. We have characters who try to leave, characters who do and we never see again and even those that somehow manage to return to the crash site. The personalities for after the crash were well chosen also, we have one dude who was declared insane before takeoff so we constantly have to look after him but we also have one guy who gets his leg crushed on impact and it is obvious he will be the one to sap the water supply and then why have the bad asses who are thinking does he really need the water? He's going to die anyway.

Anyway the film results in a insane idea of building a new aeroplane out of what's left of the old one which leaves our poor survivors scratching their heads but at the same time with the 'we have nothing to lose by trying' attitude. This is full of action, not only full of the internal hardships of personal quarrels and the weather but even scenes when Arab raiders are on the prowl, this has to be a must see from me.

Voyage to the Prehistoric Planet

It's one of the many that involves a group of men going on an adventure in a world full of dinosaurs, this time it happens to be Venus where scientists are wanting to go down there and collect some samples for testing. On the trip they overcome many hardships from giant lizard men to pterodactyl, at one point we almost have a case of the damsel in distress at the end but thank god it was a false alarm.

There are many problems with this feature, the most important one to me is that it says Basil Rathbone stars in this but he must only appear in a handful of scenes even though his acting is solid. The acting is shocking at the best of times, thick American accents with no emotion not even in the facial expressions but even with these problems I managed to have a good and fun time.

There was countless lizard men that were laughably men in suits wrestling with our hero's in a mud bath, they loved it. And there was a river of Jam coming from the volcano but it didn't matter, I've never been one for being impressed by special effects. It's the effort and imagination that goes into films like this that I appreciate. I wouldn't recommend this to many people but I've always loved the cheap and cheerful element in such Sci-fi's.

The Wolfman
The Wolfman(2010)
½

When it comes to watching remakes of classics I find it almost essential to attempt to forget the original film exists to have a hope of enjoying it. I never had high hopes for this film but I so wanted to like because I love to disagree with the critics, sadly it wasn't to be. Basically we have the classic story of the dude getting bitten with the good old love story interwoven; there isn't anything else really to say about the story line. The so called surprises and twists in the movie are so blatant from the off I only hoped they would come sooner rather than later.

Visually the film is outstanding; some of the graphics were really impressive especially seeing what was left of our hero's brother, which sent a shiver down me. I heard allot of reviews stating they made a load of crap with a good cast, now if by good cast they mean Anthony Hopkins and Hugo Weaver then I would agree but I couldn't see many notable performances and as much as I love Hugo he just couldn't pull off a Scottish accent so he seemed to resort to his low key tone to hide it.

Again just like Sherlock Holmes we have the infamous American funding in the film which nine times out of ten means they want an American star. All the original story lines suggest our hero returns to his ancestral home in Wales so why don't they just use a native actor? They try and make some bull crap story up that he spent a lot of his years in the states to explain his accent. Another thing I noticed allot of was they tried to scare me with the wolf man jumping from behind a bed so many times I just started taking this for granted and even laughed on occasion.

In all fairness though I have seen allot of worse remakes and I think there was a fine line between this being a successful remake and not so I would say its defiantly worth a watch and I could defiantly see why people would enjoy this.

Outpost
Outpost(2007)

It starts with Ray Stevenson hiring a band of mercenaries; ironically they all have different nationalities pretty much. They have to travel to a bunker far in the east of Europe to recover some Nazi relic that was an experiment during world war two to create the ultimate soldier. Unfortunately for Ray and the boys the relic in fact works and a group of preserved Nazi zombies try to stop them taking as they would seese to exist.

It was filmed on a rather low budget of £3,000,000 but they seemed to make every penny count, this is a great action packed horror film which sometimes uses the claustrophobic approach and works great as its set in a bunker underground. Ray Stevenson is a great actor in it and may gain in popularity soon as he has had a streak of good films; his latest major film appearance is The Book of Eli.

The Terror (The Haunting) (The Castle of Terror)

Just from reading the back of the DVD I knew I was going to be in for a great time, the story was just excellent. It's all about Jack Nicholson becoming separated from his regiment in Napoleons army and winding up pursuing a stunner to a castle only inhabited by Boris Karloff and his servant.

I can certainly see why Bella Lugosi 'disliked' or at least envied Boris Karloff; his acting in this is rather outstanding. This is one of those films like Sleuth where there are only 1-3 characters on screen at most so it is essential to have a good cast. I particularly like the way in which Jack Nicholson can put an insult across in the calmest of manors with the only thing to break his temper being Boris's denial of the existence of the female he so wants to shaft.

Some rather good scenes included anything at all set in the graveyard, I feel these old films capture the creepiness and mist perfectly. The film had a far from text book ending, I thought Jack Nicholson was going to get the female and have a very happy future but I was wrong. The funny thing was he didn't seem that bothered by how it turned out, more bothered by perhaps the foul taste in his mouth?

Horror Hotel
Horror Hotel(1961)

Horror Hotel tells the tale of a young student who visits a place called Whitewood, notorious for its history in witchcraft and devil worshiping. Christopher Lee recommends she goes there to help her current study in the subject.

As soon as we are at the mysterious setting of Whitewood I could see what a scary place it was, the setting was well constructed and looked very authentic. Tim Burton must have seen this film when he was doing Sleepy Hollow, I can see many similarities between the two. The story line creates a claustrophobic horror in the sense we follow someone who has went to a village and they are on their own with no indication of who is out to get them or not, this is again similar to Sleepy Hollow and classics like the Wicker man I thought.

I had a sense that no one was safe in this film; the main characters all had an equal chance of being popped as any other which makes the film unpredictable. The most memorable scene was when the girl's blind grandfather told her to get the funk out the village because she was a target for the witchcraft. With the film having all these element and such Studs as Christopher Lee I think it is well recommended.

The Corpse Vanishes
½

You really need to credit some of these old films; they just cut straight to the action. 5 Minutes in and we already have two casualties in the shape of the brides which are being mysteriously knocked unconscious at the altar. The film moved so fast to begin with it was almost hard to keep track of but once it settled into the scenes at the mansion it started getting better.

A certain atmosphere started to grow within the house when then they were constantly being spied on while they sleep but I felt this wasn't enough to make the film great. I don't think Lugosi really felt at home out of the silent era, his amazing facial expressions and actions just weren't made use of anymore although I credit the film for trying to exploit this in the scenes when he creeps round the house at night.

Some things I noticed from the feature straight away were that Ed Wood certainly did his research when it come to using Lugosi, I think it was the Bride of the monster where Lugosi plays the mad scientist? He even beats Tor Johnson like there no tomorrow just like he beats the poor hunchback in this. I do love the music in this; it needs to be relied upon more due to small budgets and poor special effects, the scene when that hunchback followed our lead actress round the tunnels located under the house, it just seemed right.

Some of the acting was laughable but then it wasn't like people had the proper facilities to develop the art at that point. Anyway I still think the story line even for the forties isn't fresh, I've seen many films before this that featured the mad scientist and his pet hunchback.

And Now Ladies & Gentlemen

I simply wanted a film in which Jeremy Irons stared as he is one of my favourite actors of all time and this is what popped up in Wikipedia. It starts with Sir Jeremy robbing a jewellery store in the most amazing way possible; he then uses the money to purchase a Yot and then enters a race but the poor guy keeps having black outs so he wakes up in Morocco harbour and basically he meets a girl and it goes from there.

The difference is that they are both having these blackouts and soon they discover they both have brain tumours and go on a massive adventure to get rid of them. The film is also classed as a psychological thriller as there is a robbery involved towards the end, there were so many elements thrown in that the film almost never came together but thanks to Jeremy Irons I think his convincing acting and just being a stud saved this. I hadn't a clue that some of this film was dubbed in places until about 60 minutes in when Jeremy's voice didn't quite fit his lips but I suppose I never noticed because the actors do their own voices.

Legion
Legion(2010)

Most films that start off with quotes on the opening titles usually spell bad things for me, it's almost like they are trying to set a tone for a film using the words of someone else instead of what's actually been created within the film. Anyway I heard allot of bad things about this film, I was pleased to see Paul Bettany as the lead role even if he seems an unlikely character for such a role. He displayed a good set of acting skills I never thought he could be so flexible with roles; I also liked Dennis Quad in this.

In the opening scene I thought the film seemed a little cheesy especially with the hole Paul blasted in the wall being in the shape of a cross. I didn't expect from the DVD cover that this would be the classic survivor's story with the cast holding out in a cafe, the atmosphere at this point worked very well and I felt the isolation the poor unfortunates in the film must have felt. In fact the film started to get even better, I loved the occasional humour such as the ice cream man and the old woman swearing and then running round the walls but then it got even funnier when the possessed kid accidently sliced his fingers of.

There was a large amount of problems though. I've seen similar story lines before that are done better without angels which I thought was a bad idea to include and there never seemed to be a full explanation to what was going on, there just seemed to be bits and pieces of information now and then. Throughout the feature there was the occasional scene that wasn't deemed necessary, this wasn't a television show, I didn't need to know the back story of anyone or what the one handed cooks dad told him when he was little that made him cry more than when he got his back covered in acidic puss.

Even with all these faults I can't understand why the film is rated so low, it's not great but I thought less than 20% from critics was a bit steep. This probably deserved to watched at least once.

28 Weeks Later...

I was so excited to hear there was a sequel to 28 Days Later I almost Jizzed all over the shop, and then I heard Robert Carlyle was staring in it which only made me more excited. The film started to a stunning scene of some of the infected attacking a house, Robert was the only one to make it out alive and he leaves his wife screaming at the window for his help and just started running which I thought was an amazing use of realism in the fact that who the f***k would go back for her and play the hero, would you?

I'm afraid to say that from here the film started to deteriorate for me, why did the Americans have to come and occupy Britain? Then it hit, they sold the rights to make the film to an American film company and what American wouldn't jump at the chance for an excuse to occupy London? Part of me wanted to switch the film of but I stuck with it just encase Robert Carlyle would start braking some heads but OH NO! He had to swap spit with his half-infected bitch and turn into one of them himself just 40 minutes in. I understand what the film was trying to achieve with all the killing of the main characters, it wanted to be unpredictable and make you think no one is safe but for Christ sake you've just killed of Robert Carlyle to have this effect, I wanted to cry.

Ok that is by far not the biggest problem in the film for me, to have someone who is practically half infected and half normal is something that anyone with half a brain should not touch. It's like the return of the Daleks in Doctor Who they made a 'goody' Dalek, it just shouldn't be done, it's almost childish, these baddies shouldn't be gifted with a consciences it just removes a hole element from them.

The ending was somewhat satisfactory it didn't redeem the film and to be honest I found it extremely predictable, goodbye Europe. And another thing using the music from the original film scores this no points either, they thought they could use it to create the same sort of feelings that it did in the first one.

City of Ember

After the foundations for the film were laid I realised what a fantastic idea this story line was and yet again it was another of the many post-apocalyptic films realised at the moment. Unfortunately I don't think this film reached its full potential, I'm not saying it was bad I just think it could have been a lot better in what it was trying to achieve.

There was a great cast in the film; I was really pleased to see Martin Landau although it's a pity he had a somewhat small part to play. Bill Murray and Tim Robbins also played brilliant characters in the film, there weren't many highlights as such but I was impressed with the amount of imagination and special effects that went into some of the contraptions and the isolated civilization in which the movie is set.

It was rather upsetting to see that such a good idea for a film be handed to a couple of children for the lead roles but then I'm sure the film would appeal even more to me if was of that age group. Apparently the lad who plays the lead role was 23 when he done this film but it's obvious he was playing a 17 year old or something. I would have been a lot nicer to see more of what was outside the City Of Ember because it seemed a bit limited to the problem they had with the generator.

Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans
½

I was looking forward to seeing Nicolas Cage in a roll he felt at home with, after seeing him in the Wicker Man I felt sorrier for him than upset for how terrible the film was. When the film started I thought I'd be in for another standard cop film with Nick playing the hero but I couldn't have been more wrong, he truly defined the words 'bad cop' and 'anti hero'.

I never seen it coming that most of the time he would be just lifting people he thought were drug dealers so he could have a snort himself. His character seemed to change allot throughout the film, one minute he would attempt to single handily remove a bad guy so his fellow cops didn't have to risk getting shot and then the very same night he would be getting a hand job as a bribe not to send them to jail for possession of drugs while he forces her boyfriend to watch at gun point.

It gets even weirder as a strange sense of humour emerges when he's high of crack which I don't even have the right words to explain. I think this is one outstanding film and I defiantly think this could be the most unpredictable film of 2009, not in twist endings but just what you would expect from Nicolas Cage being in a detective film.

The Plague of the Zombies

This hammer horror production doesn't feature the classic line up of Christopher Lee or Peter Cushin but stands just as high as any other hammer film to feature them. The film is about a small town in Cornwall that has been infected by some strange disease but locals won't let the doctor conduct any examinations on the body because they believe it's disrespectful.

Andre Morell makes a brilliant and convincing role as the hero in this hammer flick and John Carson is an outstanding villain, the rest of the acting is pretty standard. The atmosphere the film has is fantastic; the idea of the town basically being isolated from the world and just the way it was set out makes it very creepy.

One noteworthy thing about the film was that not only was it a zombie film but it was set in perhaps the late stages of the 19th century and I haven't seen any zombie films set in any other period than the 20th and 21st century. The actual effects on the Zombies were perfect for me, there seemed to be more effort going into making them seem authentic that most recent zombie films.

The best moment in the film was a classic scene when Andre Morell decapitates a zombie with a shovel; I found this particularly brilliant considering Evil Dead 2 didn't do this for another 21 years. Amazing scenes like this coupled with the films great eerie score make this one of my favourites.

Rampage
Rampage(2009)
½

I have been awaiting this film for a very long time, I had read on the internet that this was good but also saying it was 'statistically' going to happen that Uwe Boll was to make a good film. I even read one review saying he must have got some fresh out of university film student to help him, I wish people would just accept the man is getting allot better.

The film does what it says on the tin, it's about a young man who is sick with the system and the way the country is run and basically goes on a rampage through his home town to somewhat cleanse it of people who I would consider victims of society and are lead like sheep into thinking that life revolves around materialistic products. There were some outstanding moments such as when he blasts away a bloke he remembers for making a very poor coffee or such product before he started the spree.

Uwe Boll was really at home with this film because his fast camera angles really suit the fast action and almost make it seem like it's live as if it was being reported. The story is well constructed and doesn't need that much dialogue because of the sheer amount of action; this is ideal because screen writing never was Uwe Boll's strong point. I was very fond of the twist at the end which I am not going to spoil and I shall recommend this to anyone who likes to see high body counts in films or simply just all out action.

Shutter Island

The only thing that happened to attract me to this film was the DVD cover to be honest; I never really thought much of Leonardo Di Caprio which I admit was because of his type cast role as the gimp in Titanic but my poor expectations of this film were soon turned around. I didn't even know this was set in a different time period when I started watching it which was a nice and as the film progressed I started to admire and have more respect for Di Caprio that I never had before.

I admit the film was very predictable and it's the same ending I've seen many times before in countless psychological thrillers but what was different was the passion I had that I hoped it wasn't going to be that typical ending and what if they were actually messing with his head like he thinks? I also loved the atmosphere the film created such as the graveyard scene; it was spooky like in most of the films settings and made it seem like they were really alone on this island and possible even the very people who called them out to the island were there to get them.

This had so much changing and different elements thrown in that it made you think maybe this wasn't going to have a text book ending at all, some people say they disliked the ending but I found that I could only see people disliking it because of a possible attachment you can form with Leonardo and the expectations you want to have of him. The part of the film that summed it up for me and thought this is brilliant was in the last few seconds of the film when Leonardo says his last sentence of dialogue, it was just magical and I would recommend this to anyone.

Legionnaire
Legionnaire(1998)
½

The films take most of its setting in the later days of the French empire in Africa after a man signs up for the foreign legion to escape some local mafia. Everything seemed authentic within the film and I was very pleased to see him get away from the woman he loved and didn't have to bother saving her throughout the film. These sort of films don't seem to be made anymore which is sad because I love the classics such as Zulu but the nearest films that seem to be made about the ages of the empires is crap like the Patriot which any self respecting English person cannot watch.

The story was packed with action throughout and kept me on edge, fair enough there were some mistakes in the films such as most of the actors were British pretending to do a French accent which you could see through easily and in one battle scene you couldn't hear the sound of his gun shots which was weird but all this can be excused. At first I thought the ending was terrible as the Arabs let him go but then if you read the history books it is recorded that at one point 3 remaining members of the foreign legion charged a whole army because they thought they had no hope of escape and the Arabs were so impressed they let the soldiers go which makes me think the ending to this film was not all that unbelievable at all and I would recommend this to anyone who searching for an exciting time.

Final Storm (The Storm)

With a current run of films being themed in a post-apocalyptic environment I decided to check out the Uwe Boll version of things... The films is about a storm that hits the planet and for some reason people and animals alike start disappearing, apparently because God has thought it time to get rid of the earth and many other solar systems in the universe. During the storm a suspicious man stumbles across the house that basically plays with the minds of the rest of the cast throughout the film.

Some of the acting was pretty poor apart from the Luke Perry who played a very convincing part. I think it was partly because the script was so poorly written that the acting could have possible seemed the way it was. Despite these elements which may make the film sound bad there was allot of positives within it that I could find and besides I didn't expect too much from an Uwe Boll movie that was using funds allot less than he usually does.

I loved how they had to keep going into the local town to collect supplies while it was infested with survivors from the apocalypse that were out to kill them and steal one of the few vehicles that had petrol. The most impressive thing I liked about this film was the part when they realised there was no more animals on the planet and no sound of the birds or crickets, the scene made my hairs stand on end and that is something a film hasn't done to me in years. In all a pretty fun experience but if Uwe wrote the script for this then maybe he should leave it to someone else and focus on the directing which I thought was extremely good in this film.

The Book of Eli
½

The film is one of the many recent to feature a post-apocalyptic world most likely because of the approaching 2012 end of the world Mayan prediction. The setting for the film I thought was fantastic and the cloths even more accurate to what I would imagine in my own post-apocalyptic future. The acting was brilliant, I particularly liked Gary Oldman's performance and then I was pleasantly surprised to see Malcolm McDowell, Ray Stevenson from Outpost and Michael Gambon who makes an appearance as a cannibal. The film was also packed with action throughout and there was a memorable moment when he turns a shotgun on Tom Waits the shop keeper.

My first grudge with this film has to be the woman that follows Denzel about and slows him down like the woman always does in countless films, I wish the she would just stay out of a film for just once and we could see the hero tackle more inventive situations. We could have had Denzel ravage her like Gary Oldman offered her to him for and then he goes on his way instead of him talking the 'honourable' route and telling her to sleep on the floor. If anyone has played the video game Fallout 3 I was hoping for something similar in terms of the amount head popping!

Like most people I was massively disappointed in the ending, I am not going spoil it for anyone who hasn't seen it but it was huge let down. I don't know how they could make you believe that all the way through, I was annoyed so much I looked through the film for bits where I could catch him out. Anyway I still thought it was better than the average film out at the moment and I probably will watch it again just out of curiosity of analysing Denzel's actions.

Bosque de sombras (BackWoods)
½

Seeing Gary Oldman playing a good character in a film is quite a change but he seems to pull it off very well, in fact I like him more like this than playing his notorious villain roles. The action starts kicking of when convincing Paddy Considine blasts a hole in the chest of a Spaniard trying to ravage his girlfriend, from there allot of shotgun sounds are heard throughout the film.

Some criticisms were that the film seems a little isolated in parts limiting it to only a couple of cast members in a scene but then again the atmosphere was good because of this. The ending however was brilliant though.

Sherlock Holmes
½

Just from seeing the advert it made me cringe to think about this film but never the less I couldn't resist giving it a watch. I'm going to start with this films many problems before even thinking about any positives I may have come across. I couldn't believe that Sherlock Holmes was played by an American in the form of Robert Downey, for me picking the right the right Sherlock is like picking the right person for Doctor Who or even James Bond. You can't change the nationality of the actor even if he is portraying an Englishman; I also thought he was too young for the role and there is just no loyalty to the original idea of Sherlock Holmes. Sherlock was never a Boxer when out of work, he was never one with the martial arts, he was never a sharp shooter, inventor and even some sort of telepath he is portrayed as in the film the only thing they obviously had in mind when making this was its gross revenue and in doing so has come close to destroying a great series. The only way they could deviate more from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes was if they had him bend Watson over and sodomise him vigorously which would have been a perfect reflection of the personalities they are portraying themselves.

Ok! There was some parts I actually liked about this film, the setting of Victorian London was brilliant and had an atmosphere about it. The choice of villain was also brilliant I remember that dude also giving Richard Sharpe a hard time in one of the old episodes. Finally for what the film was I have to admit it was directed well, all the action scenes were done brilliantly and the riddle about the use of magic was good (if it turned out to be real magic I would have banged my head of a wall). Lastly my favourite thing about this was simply the films score, well written and very different to usual.

War of the Worlds 2: The Next Wave
½

The first thing that needs to be taken into account when watching this film is that this is a sequel to the Asylum version of War of the Worlds and not the Spielberg version. As speculated in the title of the film the alien?s come back for another go at harvesting some human blood but in this movie our hero, C. Thomas Howell (who plays Jim Halsey in The 1986 version of The Hitcher) allows himself to be captured to rescue his son who is onboard the mother ship.

The film starts with a sequence of the alien?s landing and kidnapping some humans, it was nice to see that the special effects had increase since the first film even thought this has half the budget of the first and that the alien machines known as tripods actually have three legs in this where as they had four in the first one. C. Thomas Howell is defiantly the linchpin in the film; his acting is brilliant he holds the film together even when it?s going through some poor moments.

There were some parts of the film where I really liked the music used in certain situations but then it could just turn round and make a scene look like a joke. I think the whole plot of the film was a brilliant idea and some of the directing was great, the only thing letting this down is that most of the acting is terrible only being saved by Thomas Howell. I found the film fun though and not bad at all for an Asylum production and C. Thomas Howell?s first directional effort.

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
½

I found the first twenty minutes or so extremely hard to get through, you have your usually bad guys who come from a non-English speaking country and then we have a classic English traitor who is portrayed by Ray Winston which was very predictable and upsetting. When the action started we see our Indiana jumping on some sort of jet engine powered train to escape, I thought that was a step too far but then it just got worse. He gets in a refrigerator to avoid a nuclear bomb, gets hurled miles through the air and gets out without a scratch on him? I thought we were going to be in for a complete masterpiece of unrealistic crap.

After this opening scene finishes which I just think was an overdone effort from Spielberg trying to get us all exited we then settle back into the Indiana Jones we know. I loved the feeling of him working as a professor again and the atmosphere started to grow, some other things I liked and remembered from the originals were for example simply the map used to show how far our heroes had travelled and also Harrison ford figuring out riddles from reading an old piece of paper and looking at patterns on concrete floors. I could just about get away with the whole idea of aliens in this film and the amazing Crystal Skull which would make this film an asset to Damien Hirst?s porn collection.

The film was far from brilliant though, I thought there were one too many references to how old Mr. Harrison Ford was and I knew from our first meeting with Mutt Williams character that he was going to eventually turn out to be Indiana?s son. Anyway the whole idea of Indiana Jones is to entertain and this film was very entertaining even with a few problems.

Gran Torino
Gran Torino(2009)

The film starts with the funeral of Eastwood?s wife and just from that start you can see that this film is going to be an emotional plot. It?s basically your standard story of an old grumpy fella who comes good in the end. Next door to Clint a group of Koreans move in and he isn?t on good terms with them as he had to shoot them on a regular basis in the Korean War.

There are a few humorous remarks in the film including one part where he repeatedly tells some Korean thugs to get of his lawn, his threat was ?we used to stack fucks like you five feet high in Korea and use you as sand bags?. From an early stage in the film we see Eastwood coughing up blood which obviously in movies like this means he?s going to die at the end, it?s a plot I?ve seen many of times before, at least with Michael Caine?s similar breathing problems in Harry Brown the film turned round and surprised me at the end as he walked away unharmed.

Some moments I did like in the film were when his son bought Clint some birthday presents which included a telephone with massive buttons and basically a litter picker so he didn?t have to bend down to get anything, this was very patronising and helped build up the emotions for the final scene in the film. Ultimately I seen that sort of thing was coming at the end and because I knew this from an early stage I was unable to build up any sadness or shock for what was about to happen.

Even with all the negatives I found I still enjoyed this to a certain degree and it?s always nice to see Clint Eastwood appear in films these days especially as the star as he will be doing less and less films as he becomes older.

Seed
Seed(2007)

Upon hearing the film had a very cliché plot similar to that of Halloween and Friday the 13th I had poor expectations of the film and that?s not to even say that it?s an Uwe Boll film. The plot is your standard bad ass killer who?s mute and wears a mask because he?s to god dam ugly, he then sets about murdering various people for not much reason at all.

The opening scene of the film starts with real footage of animal cruelty which involves a man hitting an animal in the face with a machete and even one of an animal that had been skinned and was still alive, just. This was very disturbing but it did set the tone beautifully, the next ten minutes of the film started going downhill with poor acting and a scene that involves a dream which Boll does in most of his work. I thought I was in for another Uwe Boll special in which I would pause the film every five minutes to refresh my rotten tomatoes page to view updates, but it actually started picking up at this point and got better throughout.

In comparison to Uwe Boll?s Alone in the Dark he seems to have learned allot in two years and it certainly doesn?t seem like the same man directing. The camera quality has increased, the directing has got better and most importantly I think is that the films score has increased tremendously and all this on half the budget Alone in the Dark was filmed with. Perhaps the only thing to worry me about this is the fact Uwe claimed he accidently deleted the script and the second one he wrote was knocked up pretty quickly.

As this is a horror film with a serial killer in it the bare essential is to have good deaths and in modern day it may seem all originality has been taken out of the genre but this completely surprised me. There was a scene that involved our masked villain kicking a police man?s head through some iron bars which was rather well done; one hell of a horrible arm break in it but the most gruesome part was when he was teasing one of his victims who is tied up in a chair. He starts but just taping her on the head with the hammer but each time he does it slightly harder until eventually the room is covered in blood, the film also shows many a speeded up videos of decomposition as well.

To support the gore and effects in this film I was actually surprised to discover it had won an award for best special effects in the New York horror festival. The twist ending I found to be very good and effective the only problem is that I?m sure I?ve seen it done before just not sure where. The film makes me cringe way more than any Halloween or Friday the 13th film I just wish the plot was more original unless it would be brilliant.

Alone in the Dark

Hearing bad reviews of films usually only encourages me to watch them; after all you are your own critic this however is one time I wish I listened. As the film started I first noticed the camera quality wasn?t up to scratch but I put up with it. The acting in the film was dreadful and I was laughing from the minute the taxi driver opened his mouth, it?s a real pity because I like Christian Slater allot especially his direct to DVD movie The Good Sheppard but this is completely terrible and what the hell was he wearing? I?ve never seen a less heterosexual attire in a movie ever; he certainly didn?t pull of that tank top he had to wear.

I tried to remain optimistic about the film but when the first fight scene come into the play I just wanted to cry. The music used was absolute horrendous and every time even a punch was thrown the slow motion would be used, I bet if they put the slow all those scenes to regular speeds you would iron out a good ten minutes of the film. The fight scene reminded me of the plot from a porn film (Jenna Jameson?s pirate film called Conquest in particular) just without the actual entertainment after the scene is set...

There was one particular part(s) of the film that had me laughing, every time they discovered a secret artefact or whatever it was this cheesy magical wind shim sounding noise would play to basically tell you, the viewer, that this little pebble the guy is currently holding is special. During the film you will see one sex scene which starts with Tarra Reid attempting to erotically touch the scars that cover Christian?s back, well that certainly wasn?t sexy.

I wondered and better wondered what the $20,000,000 budget for this film was spent on; I mean there didn?t seem to be that much CGI that would take up all the money and it was almost like they cut the budget in certain areas to save money but that was just Uwe?s lack of abilities leaking through. Towards the end there is a last desperate gamble that was obviously an attempt to copy the film Alien in which a black sloppy monster is hanging from the ceiling and when our poor victim turns round he gets a face full of teeth.

The strangest thing about this film yet is after severely disliking this I started getting curious of Uwe Boll?s other ?films? as he defiantly is the modern equivalent of Ed Wood and at least his passion is to be admired.

The Wicker Man
½

A remake of the 1973 version this version stars Nicolas Cage as the police man sent to Summerisle to investigate the disappearance of a young girl, this version offers little deviation of the original version. The outcome is exactly the same making it impossible to rout for Mr. Cage.

First of this a complete slap in the face for fans of the original, I can?t believe they had the cheek to change the setting of the film from an island off the coast of Scotland to an island off the coast of America. Nicolas Cage just Fannies around running a mock on the island looking for clues like a prick, no offence to him he battled with the script to the best of his abilities but at the end of the day it just wasn?t successful and was it me or does kate beahan's facial expressions in this reflect the mood of the film.. depressing.

The film had no presence in the slightest of an actor that could even be compared to that of Christopher Lee?s character Lord Summerset. One deviation from the original was Anthony Shaffer?s use of mild pornography mixed with horror in the original which certainly gives films like that a certain element and you can simply see what the 2006 version is missing from its PG-13 rating.

In all fairness though there are way worse remakes of films out there and it wasn?t a complete disaster outside the script and comparison to the original. Although the only positives I see from the movie are that the island the film is set on looks great (but they never used this setting to their advantage) and one other thing that will stick with me from this film is the hardcore knee cap smashing at the end.

A Room for Romeo Brass
½

As Paddy Considine?s first collaboration with director Shane Meadows this really is a great film to watch. The story is about two kids who happen to meet a young man who seems to have some sort of special needs disability and is about ten years older than them.

Paddy Considine?s acting is absolutely brilliant; this is just another example of how flexible he can be and this is probably one of his films he has done. Just like his character in Dead Man?s Shoes you can never quite read him or know what to expect. The attitudes of his character can change instantly and you never know if you like this guy or not as some of the time he can actually be rather humorous. The most particular funny part for me was when he was shouting ?Ladine, Ladine come back? who is the girl he is in love with.

Bob Hoskins also plays a small part in this but his acting is solid. As a Shane Meadows movie its pretty standard of the sort of films he puts out, it?s set in a working class environment somewhere in England like most of his films and uses a soundtrack comprised of music from the time it is set or music he admires.

The Prestige
The Prestige(2006)

The first thing that immediately caught my eye with this film was the great cast, Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Hugh Jackman and even a great appearance from David Bowie. The film is about two magicians that become enemies due to some unfortunate accident and then become rival magicians trying to outdo each other. What I find most interesting about the film is that you can never quite tell who is the villain, you opinions are either always changing or you are led in the wrong direction.

My favourite acting in the film has to be David Bowie, it was pleasant surprise to see his appearance and believe his acting abilities are underrated as I thought he was fantastic in Labyrinth. There are twists and turns in the film throughout and the end is absolute fantastic. The era in which it was set was perfect as magic tricks were a common form of entertainment then and makes the idea of the Tesla magic way more believable.

The Dark
The Dark(2004)
½

Pretty much your bog standard psychological horror film that has a strange little exorcist like girl running around in shadows talking with a dark posh accent. There is some originality though, I would have thought that with Mario Bello?s character gallivanting all over the shop gathering these clues to bring her daughter back that Sean Bean would think she has gone insane until the later scenes when Bean finally gets a piece of the action. Instead of this the girl comes forward to Mr. Bean quite early on and seems like a rather ordinary person who is lost, I found it rather strange...

Obviously what saves this film from being less than average is Sean Bean himself, he is a great actor and makes no exceptions in this. It was very nice to see him playing a hero of sorts instead of a villain like he usually does in most of his major films. If you like horrors that have strange meanings that you have to figure out this probably won?t hurt your head trying to guess the plot but I think it?s worth having a watch.

A History of Violence

After seeing some recent good performances by Viggo Mortensen I decided to watch some of his films made after the filming Lord of the Rings. A history of violence is a thriller about a man whose adamant a group of mafia mobsters have got the wrong guy, it may have seemed obvious but the twist half way in or so actually surprised me.

There are a few violent scenes but not that many, to make up for this these scenes are extremely gore filled in parts like when he practically shoots a man?s face of and leaves what?s left of it drowning in blood. Another memorable part was when Viggo turns a man?s nose to pulp by bashing him in the face so much only the bone underneath is visible.

This film was a pleasant surprised as I thought it was going to be complete crap but it was great. I was also happy to a see an appearance from Ed Harris who Viggo has worked with on Appaloosa.

Walking Tall
Walking Tall(2004)

If you are looking for fight scenes featuring Dwayne Johnson you will find a few of them here. I think Dwayne Johnson is actually a rather good actor and he wants to keep moving as far away from wrestling as possible, unfortunately for me this is not one of his better movies.

The film starts with Dwayne coming home from the army to discover his home town which is now full of crime and corruption, not a very original story line... Anyway Dwayne decides his town should take no more of this crap and goes on a rampage with his bit of 2x4 lumber.

The best part of the film is the fight scene in the lumber mill at the end when he has final got to the head honcho and old friend who is played by Neal McDonough but I found the film to be missing something, it had lots of different elements but never enough of one, I would have just liked to see maybe one more fight scene.

Starship Troopers

Based on the book of the same name this is an action packed adventure film set in the future when mankind is at war with a race of oversized bugs. This film seems to have so much going on within it you would think it would be three hours long.

For 1997 I believe the graphics are outstanding and the bugs seem to appear in vast quantity as well which indicates this obviously had a huge budget. My personal favourite character had to be Zim who is the sergeant who trains the troops, I think his acting is so good that you know his character treats the rest of the cast like crap but you like him anyway especially when he is practically a hero of sorts by the end of the film.

This film has everything any other war film has in the way of action and battle scenes. There is one memorable battle scene in which a small group of soldiers defend an outpost from what seems millions of bugs until they get rescued from the space fleet. This is a film defiantly worth seeing.

Valkyrie
Valkyrie(2008)

I always wanted to see a film based on the attempted assassination of Hitler and when Valkyrie was released I was not disappointed. The film contains a great cast, every actor made the film come together and work.

The films greatest asset is the tension and suspense that is created in allot of the scenes and despite you knowing the outcome of the film you are on the edge of your seat hoping that the writer changes the result just for your viewing pleasure because you become attached to the characters and the idea of Hitler being killed.

One of the things I liked was the transition from the German language to the English language, it simply fades the German out and the English in literally as Tom Cruise is talking at the start. The last positive I thought was that it seemed a change from your regular world war two films that depict every last German to be a fascist Nazi.

The Patriot
The Patriot(2000)

The few positives of the film are the reasonably decent acting by some of the cast like Mel Gibson and Tom Wilkinson. Unfortunately I think this is one of Heath Ledgers worse films, it may have been the character he had to play more than his own acting abilities. The costumes and settings where the film takes place are very convincing and the film is full of action.

The main problem with the film being its historical inaccuracies especially the one depicting the British as practically war criminals equal to that of the Nazi?s. I accept films that have inaccuracies to make it more of an action packed film and to entertain people but this is just offensive.

Appaloosa
Appaloosa(2008)

It?s all about action, gun fights and even Ed Harris getting metaphorically crapped on by a woman. This film is a great effort for Ed Harris?s second attempt at directing and it makes it seems like he has been doing it his whole career.

Ed Harris and Viggo Mortensen?s acting in the film are great but for me the best performance of the film comes from Jeremy Irons who really does make his character his own. You can never quite know what is going through his mind and why he acts the way he does, you almost what to believe him when he says he?s a reformed man.

I was also pleasantly surprised by the appearance of actor Lance Henriksen who played a convincing part. This is very worthwhile watching and is a great effort for a modern western, in fact I even believe this is better than 3:10 to Yuma.

Deathwatch
Deathwatch(2002)

As a horror film set in the trenches of world war one I think immediately this is a fresh idea. The plot is a group of soldiers who survive a big offensive against the Germans and then regroup to find a practically unmanned German front line trench; they attempt to hold the trench until support comes but this trench isn?t what it seems.

I was first concerned that the leading role was Jamie Bell from the film Billy Eliot and I thought as he?s pretty much typecast for that film that it would be a major problem. Fortunately the way he plays the character is completely different and he actually puts on a rather good act. The film also has actor Andy Serkis who plays Smegal in the Lord of the Rings series.

The actor?s costumes and the trench in which the film is set are very realistic, the trench is full of rats and rotten corpses which makes this a brilliant setting for a horror film and brings a true meaning to ?the horrors of war?.

I think the story was well worked and the idea is totally unique especially with a surprise twist at the end of the film, it is written and directed by Michael J. Basset who is also the director of Solomon Kane. Summed up I think this is another great British horror film that just hasn?t got the recognition it deserves.

3:10 to Yuma
3:10 to Yuma(2007)
½

With both Christian Bale and Russell Crow staring together I heavily anticipated this film. It?s simply about a group of people having to escort a prisoner to the infamous 3:10 to Yuma train so from there on he can travel to a prison to await execution.

I thought the plot seemed rather standard but it was executed very well and there were some original ideas for example I thought it was very interesting and different to see Christian Bale?s character only have one leg but yet be a star in the film.

Action scenes are plentiful and you will get all the gun fights you need to see. The only problem I found was that I don?t think Ben Wade would have simply got on the train for the benefit of Dan Evens making his son proud. This was a decent film though and worth watching.

Blade Runner
Blade Runner(1982)
½

The film depicts a future when humans use genetically engineered humans known as replicants to do jobs on of world colonies. However the replicants only have a four year life span which is a failsafe to stop them developing their own emotions and thoughts. Harrison Ford plays a blade runner whose job is to locate replicants and ?retire? them.

The image of the future in the film shows a world that has a population count which is too high; the film even shows adverts on television that try to influence people to move to of world colonies. Small things like that which are included in the film make the story line more believable because this seems what the future could be like.

The highlight of the film is certainly the fight scene which starts in the last twenty minutes of the film, Rutger Hauer?s performance in this is absolutely amazing and he makes the film more than worth while watching. The most memorable part of the fight scene for me was when Hauer pushed a nail into his hand to make the adrenaline flow as he is coming to the end of his replicant life span.

The Zombie Diaries
½

A great British horror film that depicts three periods in a zombie apocalypse all filmed through the sight of a cam coder. It starts off with the with the outbreak of the virus and then moves on to some point in the middle of the outbreak and final a point near the end.

I thought it was great that the film also had a sub plot of sorts that involves a non infected human who is taking advantage of the apocalypse and is committing murders of people who are also not infected.

For this film being filmed on a nano budget it is great and the choice to film it in a cam coder view makes it all the more realistic and makes you wonder what is behind the camera as you can?t see all angles of the setting. The final triumph of the film is that this was surprisingly made one year prior to Diary of the Dead.

The Terminal
The Terminal(2004)
½

This film seemed to drag on a little for myself, watching a man living in an airport for over two hours isn?t what I call fun. The film done very well and grossed allot of profit but I think that is simply because Steven Spielberg?s name is on it.

Spielberg is a good director and I like some of his films and you can see some moments of magic within this film and its directing. It seems massively overrated to the point when I?m only one hour in I don?t actually want Tom Hanks to make it home or have the pleasure of getting Benny Golson?s autograph anymore.

The most impressive thing about the film is how well thought through the plot was as this isn?t actually based on true events like I heard many time.

9
9(2009)

The film is set in a post apocalyptic world where the only survivors seem to be some sort of dolls that are alive. The film is hard to classify as to which age group it is aimed at, at first glance it would seem to be a children?s film but when watching it the monsters and violence suggest it?s for an older generation.

I think the idea of this film would be completely fresh and new if it wasn?t for the release of WALL-E which is also set in a world absent of humans and is an animated feature. It was a pity to see Martin Landau?s character was only in the film for a short amount of time.

The film seemed pretty good at the time but when I sit down and think about it I probably wouldn?t watch this again.

Sleuth
Sleuth(1972)

The film is full of twists and unexpectedness throughout which keeps you entertained for the full two hours and fifteen minutes. The film only features two characters throughout which are Michael Caine and Laurence Olivier, you may think then that this may be a little boring with only two people talking at any one time but they put on such a great show with brilliant acting it wasn?t a problem at all.

Some of the film?s most powerful moments were watching Caine beg for his life and my personal favourite line from the film was ?Be sure and tell them it was just a bloody game?. Basically you will understand why it?s so good when you see it if you haven?t already.

Most of the film takes place in the mansion itself but the film doesn?t seem isolated to any one room through the film as the mansion is so big it almost seems an adventure film.

Dead Man's Shoes

Dead Man?s Shoes is one of the many collaboration between director Shane Meadows and actor Paddy Considine. It?s a psychological about revenge, in particular Paddy has returned from the army to seek revenge on some local thugs who tormented his brother while he was away.

The acting from Paddy Considine is great, you think you know the character and think he?s sane but then he can just snap in a second like in one of the first scenes in which he goes completely mental because one of the thugs asks him what he?s looking at.

You may think this is just a typical revenge story but the plot does have twists and good ones at that.

Harry Brown
Harry Brown(2010)
½

It?s just great to see Michael Caine back in the sort of roles he used to play. Caine plays a retired man you who he and his mate are getting hassled by youths to the point his friend is murdered which is when he seeks revenge.

It may sound like a classic sort of vigilante film but what makes it great is the acting by Michael Caine, you sympathise him from the start because of how upset he sounds that he?s just lost his best friend and his wife in a short space of time. Another factor that makes you sympathise with him is possibly the respect you have for him from doing such roles before.

Liam Cunningham also makes an appearance in the film in the part that is basically the twist, the only criticism for this film is that you just want Caine to fill a few more harassing youths with led.

District 9
District 9(2009)

The idea of District 9 was extremely fresh, all but the actual attempt at filming the first half of the film in a documentary style. I think that has been done better so many times before which has been done with such a less budget than that of this film.

One quality of this film I liked was that some of the issues in the film like evicting of the bugs and referring to them as illegal immigrants contrast with issues that happen in real life just with different ethnic races of people.

In all I feel some of this film is over rated most probably because it has Peter Jacksons slapped all over it but still had enjoyable parts. The part I actually liked the most was the acting of Sharlto Copley, you may hear him use the F word multiple times and it may sound funny but I think this is the most accurate way to portray what you would react like if the situation was real.

Dog Soldiers
Dog Soldiers(2002)

Dog soldiers has to be one of the all time greatest British horror movies. The film is full of humour, action and references to other films like Zulu and is filmed in the same sort of plot of a last stand zombie film.

This is one of the few films where I didn?t see the twist coming and when it did it was great. Its acting was also quality with performances from Sean Pertwee and Liam Cunningham being my favourite. The best part of the movie doesn?t really involve any action as such; it?s a part when Sergeant Harry G. Wells (Pertwee) is telling a story about his experiences in the army. He seems to create such a good atmosphere just by telling a story it?s a wonder he hasn?t gone on to star in major films.

I think it?s very difficult to make a decent Werewolf film these days especially one that is taken seriously, this has succeeded in every area for me.

The Midnight Meat Train

A first hear of this film you wouldn?t think Vinnie Jones would fit into a horror film as villain, you would probably find it hard to take him seriously. Surprisingly he fit perfectly into the role and as the film progresses you almost want him to get away with all bad deeds he is doing.

The film has so much gore and almost unrealistic murders it has a slapstick element which is emphasised as soon as you see a cameo role by Ted Rami in which his eyes pop out due to a hit on the back of the head with a hammer. This style worked perfectly and it has so much blood you can defiantly see the influence from the original book by Clive Barker which is made even more so apparent when the twist ending comes into play.

Inglourious Basterds
½

Personally the best part of this film was the humour that occurred every so often especially the part when they are going blow each other?s ?testicles? of and when a whole clip is emptied into an already snuffed Hitler.

Person favourite character for me was Lt. Archie Hicox who was in probably the best scene in the film when they are in the pub full of Nazis. Tarantino?s presence was obvious within the movie, for example the music that doesn?t fit the time in which the film was set like Cat People by David Bowie and the cheesy writing that appeared now and then highlighting the name of certain characters.

The only problem I found with the film was that I think it was over rated, still a good film just not what I thought it was going to be.

Mutant Chronicles

The opening battle for the film got me very excited, the idea that the soldiers were basically wearing world war uniforms in the future gave the idea this war had gone on so long they were running low on supplies and in fact going in a backwards direction as far as technology was concerned.

The greatest set back in the film is noticed within the first fifteen minutes. Sean Pertwee who is in my opinion the greatest actor this film has dies or so you think until he makes a five minute appearance later in the film. Ron Perlman is then the only relatively great actor left in the film and he seems to find it rather difficult to battle with the script which is rather poor.

I did however like the chrome effect it was filmed in that looked reminiscent of Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow and looks very good. To be honest though I just think the chrome effect is a technique used to blend poor graphics into the film better as chrome is a darker shade of film and you can?t quite make out the scenery.

Aside from all the negative points I liked the idea of this film and some of the places they travel to through their journey looked very spectacular. Seeing Ron Perlman as a mutant at the end was also a small twist as he banged on about how god would save him throughout the film.

Terminator Salvation
½

As far as Terminator fans are concerned this is rather a letdown for the series. Maybe this is simply the lack of Arnold Schwarzenegger but I do believe Christian Bale done a great job in this film as it wasn?t particularly easy for him to pick up this role. I just think this film deviates too much from what the terminator series is meant to be about which was more of a horror science fiction film and has become what seems to be an adventure film.

There were some enjoyable moments though. I like the idea of the skirmishes within the destroyed city I just wished they built more on it rather than only seeing one terminator which ultimately meets a sticky end.

Another great moment was the computerised Arny, the graphics were amazingly realistic and I think the computerised version of Schwarzenegger does him great justice making him look fresh out of Mr. Olympia 75? he looked that buff.

See No Evil
See No Evil(2006)

The first problem that immediately springs to mind is the acting. There is a character called Frank who reminds me so much of Dr. Cox of the television series Scrubs it makes me laugh except the difference is Frank?s character is meant to be serious.

It gets even worse when you see the this ?Kane? character act, even though he plays the part pretty much mute the facial expressions that he pulls makes any tension created drop in a nanosecond. WWE seem to think that because Dwayne Johnson can act so can the rest of their wresting cast.

There were a couple of positives though. I thought the setting of the film looked relatively decent and real, also I thought some of the deaths and gore seemed original including a memorable moment when one of the hapless teenagers lands point blank on her wrist from a great height.

Starship Troopers 2: Hero of the Federation

The first thing taken into consideration before watching the film for me was the budget. Having only $7,000,000 compared to the original which was $100,000,000 so I wasn?t expecting anything like the first one anyway. It was a pity not to see Clancy Brown reprise his role as Lt. Jean Rasczak as was rumoured as I think this would have added an extra element to the film having a reoccurring character and might have made it seem more of an official sequel.

Aside from that I think they had the right idea to film a more ?horror? version of the bug attacks as I think it is a great way to manage their budget and builds on the idea of the bugs becoming smarter like with the capture of the Brain Bug at the end of the first film.

The Tournament

Upon reading the plot of this film I was immediately interested, the idea of thirty of the world?s greatest assassins coming together in one village to fight for a cash prize provokes many possibilities for the film.

The opening scene shows one of these contests seven years previous to when the film is set, this is possibly one of the best scenes and shows what sort of action is to come in the film. Some parts of the film seem long and drawn out but great acting from Robert Carlyle and Liam Cunningham seem to hold the film together.

One memorable moment was when The Tournament start with the English assassin attempting to take out the Chinese assassin, one of the characters describes this as England vs. China. That coupled with people betting and treating it like any other form of gambling makes it sound as if it were no more dangerous than the Olympics.

The action scenes are good but the film almost seemed isolated to a few locations within the town it was set.