So I've been given my first review copy of a piece of media to review on this blog, that being the pilot episode for Meatspace written and directed by William Carlisle. Now before I begin there is something that should be addressed about my criticisms, that being that the pilot episode is unfinished meaning that any complaints I have about the technical side of things can be addressed between now and when the episode airs. With that out of the way, let's dive in.
26 August 2014
So I've decided to take part in the Cinematic Katzenjammer Movie Challenge and the first thing I've decided to do for it is to review the film I hate the most and there is only really one candidate for it. Sure there are films like Batman and Robin, Twilight, You Got Served and The Waterboy that I hate but the film I'm reviewing is the only one where I was repulsed watching it. It is a film that has no artistic merit and should not be seen by anyone. That film is Michael Bay's Pain and Gain.
22 August 2014
21 August 2014
One of the films this year that I was both looking forward to and was trepidatious about has been The Inbetweeners 2. Being a teenager in the UK I am a fan of The Inbetweeners and I thought that the first film was one of the only good films based on a TV show so I knew that a good film could be made. At the same time, The Inbetweeners Movie was also a pretty clear end to the series, serving as a cap up to the characters meaning that there wasn't a real need for a sequel, with further warning signs being raised due to the film not being screened for critics, and since the last films not screened for critics were Mrs Browns Boys D'Movie and Pudsey the Dog: The Movie. My worries though were unfounded as The Inbetweeners 2 is a really funny film.
9 August 2014
So we've come to the final film in Politic-a-thon 2, and I think it's best to end with another excellent film looking at gay rights activism in the 1970s, Gus Van Sant's Milk. I feel this is the best film to end with because of how important stuff presented in the film is today with homosexuality being illegal in numerous countries, Uganda only just decriminalising homosexuality and gay marriage being a major topic in US politics and as such, Harvey Milk is still just as important a figure now as he was in the 1970s.
8 August 2014
So today is the final film in the sub-set of reviews focused on Richard Nixon, with this film focusing on the aftermath of Watergate, in particular a key event in which Nixon essentially confessed to a cover-up; the interviews he did with David Frost. These interviews were such an important event in the political landscape that a top notch writer and director were needed in order to do justice to the event. Thankfully, this film has Peter Morgan writing (doing an adaptation of his stage play) and Ron Howard directing.
Out of all the blockbusters coming out this summer, Guardians of the Galaxy seemed like the biggest risk. Giving a team of obscure heroes to a director who has never had a mainstream hit and started out working with Troma must have sounded insane on paper but the trailer have helped make it one of my most anticipated films of the year. The fact that I am writing this review after the second time I've seen it, and I'm planning on seeing it again in the next few days pretty much sums up what I think. I love this film and right now it's head-to-head with Avengers Assemble as being the best Marvel film.
7 August 2014
In the second part of my look at films revolving around Nixon is probably one of the most famous political films ever made, All The President's Men, with the focus here being on the investigation into Watergate. In discussing the Nixon presidency, Watergate has to be a major focus and as such, the work of the reporters that broke the story needs to be given a great deal of care and respect and this is a case where that respect has been given.
6 August 2014
Next up is the first in a set of films I'm going to do about Richard Nixon, with today focusing on his life and career with Nixon, tomorrow focusing on the Watergate investigation with All The President's Men and the day after with the Frost/Nixon interviews in well Frost/Nixon. Today though is focusing on Nixon's life and this film feels like a pretty comprehensive background to Nixon's life and career as President and a pretty good film comes out of it through Oliver Stone's direction and the performances.
5 August 2014
Sometimes when watching a film, you can't help but note the similarities between the events of the film and real life, as is the case with The Ghost. A lot of elements in the film are clearly inspired by Tony Blair's tenure as Prime Minister and the links he had with America and as such the film could quite easily fall into political exploitation. Thankfully, a really smart thriller is created instead.
4 August 2014
Next up in this blog-a-thon is the second film focusing on South African politics, albeit one which highlights the unexpected political power of sport. For the majority of the time, sport doesn't really play much of a role in politics but when it does, its importance cannot be denied. From the use of sport as a show of patriotism and the skill of other countries, through sport influencing policies through corruption (looking at you Fifa) and, in some cases, leading to the deaths of a large portion of the population (just look at the horrific conditions for workers in Qatar) sport can be highly important politically. When sport is used correctly though, it can help bring people together and that is what Invictus is all about.
3 August 2014
One thing I’m amazed at is that during both of the Politic-a-thons, I haven’t talked about any political themed documentaries. Some of the best politically themed films to have come out in recent years have been documentaries, from The Fog of War focusing on Robert McNamara to Five Broken Cameras about the oppression of Palestinians under Israel (which is really noteworthy considering what’s happening in Gaza now) to The Act of Killing focusing on the genocide in Indonesia. But I think that for my first documentary to cover on Politic-a-thon, it has to be one which was generally agreed to have been a major player in an election and helped turn the wave of public opinion against a President before his first term was up, that film being Fahrenheit 9/11.
2 August 2014
Next up in Politic-a-thon is another film based around the politics of South Africa during apartheid, with the one I’m doing today going more into detail about life in South Africa for black activists and the white population who didn’t support apartheid and out of the films based around apartheid that I can think of, there is no better example than Cry Freedom.
Next up in the Politic-a-thon is the first political film from my favourite script writer, Aaron Sorkin. There's just this great sense of humour and optimism present in a lot of Sorkin's scripts, mainly this and a virtually every episode of The West Wing he wrote and even the non-political scripts he's written (The Social Network and Moneyball springing to mind) have been some of the best scripts written in the past few years so I wanted to see if his earlier scripts were as good and I'm happy to say that The American President is another excellent film with an excellent script.