Friday, 25 June 2010

Wednesday, 23 June 2010

The rise and rise of Russell Brand

Call him what you what you want but he is funny! That’s what I say; a lot of people think that the eloquent and eccentric comedian is arrogant. I think he is too but the difference between him and others like him is that at least Mr Brand admits it. Prancing across the stage at the O2 in his last stand up routine, he took great pleasure in telling us that he LOVED the press attention for the stupidly named sachsgate. What did we do? We cheered him and laughed at his side of the story (for the record I thought it was all rubbish anyway!).

I’ll admit I hated him the first time I saw him (Big Brother’s Little Brother) he did come across as horribly arrogant and his comedy seemed solely based on sex and gyrating at the watching public that were brave enough to go on the there. My opinion of the man changed when by chance I watched Ponderland, his channel 4 series which he divulges what he thinks about specific subjects. It’s very very funny and does reveal a more what can best be described as normal side, in revealing his inner thoughts he is being frank and honest and allows the public in. So although still pretty arrogant he’s not ashamed of a past that almost killed him, in fact he’s quite aware that it has all made him the man he is today.

Ponderland made me watch his stand up, the stand up material of a man unashamedly telling us everything! For me that’s the secret of his success, he doesn’t hide behind a curtain of celebrity and revels in the news stories and controversy about his life. So much so that he uses his life as his material, kicking up some of the funniest material from a comedian in a long time. It’s refreshing to hear a comedian be this frank and a celebrity just living his life regardless of the press.

This honesty coupled with his brilliant use of the English language has also made its way into paper in the form of two very funny books. My Booky Wook is a startlingly laid bare biography that reveals the roots of this funny man. Articles of faith may not be seem as accessible as its mainly about the beautiful game but never fear for this is Russell Brand (said with rolling r’s) and as such skirts around the more football related issues, to bring you a very funny view of the premiership.

Of course this is Beeonfilm and we do need to address movies at some point, of course Get him to the Greek is out this week and one of our biggest imports looks to have finally broken into that difficult American market. His performance in Sarah Marshall a little close to real life for Brand but he played it so well, that’s why the character got his own film and to be honest I’m looking forward to seeing it and another stand up routine not to mention My Booky Wook 2! More from you Mr Brand more from you please!

Monday, 21 June 2010


Lover: Taken from Tesco DVD rental.

“Based on the Western view of terrorism, the Middle East and the American viewpoint, this is an extremely plausible and extremely entertaining action movie. OK its obviously American biased, the outcome is rarely in doubt, but the whole story, the action and the horrors of terrorism play our really well, I thoroughly enjoyed this and would say it was a definate recommendation.”

Pretty good review of a pretty good movie…

Hater: Taken from Tesco DVD rental

“WOW! Who would have thought that a group of 4 Americans could go out and be incredibly dull for an hour and then single handed, in the last fifteen minutes of the movie save Saudi Arabia single handed and end the world terror threat! Absolute & total rubbish! I was so angry by the end of the Movie that you could quite easily understand why the US has so many enemies however this was better than the boredom that it makes you endure for the first hour YAWN! Sanctimonious RUBBISH! Jamie Fox must have been high on Crack Cocaine & Meths when he agreed to do this movie his acting as usual was brilliant however who would want to bring this character to life??? His Character is an idiot as are all his dim witted FBI comrades This movie should be tried for hate crime!”

this is a little over the top to be honest, I’ll tell you why bellow…

What I thought:
The Kingdom is one film in a long line of films that try and deal with the “war on terror”. It’s a touchy subject but let’s keep the real political debate away from being entertained shall we. There’s your first problem and why most of these films don’t translate, some people go to see it cause the trailer looked good or they heard it was an action movie, others go to see it expecting to see a thought provoking statement about terrorism and the conflict in the middle east.

The Kingdom comes out more on the entertaining side despite the rather misleading opening titles which works as a history lesson in Middle Eastern conflict. From that moment on the film is out to shock you, thrill you and surprise you, everything a entertaining thriller should do. Question is does it work on those things, answer pleasantly yes. The team of FBI agents who bribe their way over to investigate a terrorist attack are well played if a bit stereotypical. Jason Bateman for me is a stand out not because his better than the rest but because it’s a very different film for him to have done, good on the CV.

One thing that annoys me is people saying something is “pro American”, most of time I agree with the statement but it is over used! You’re watching a film where Americans have just died, more Americans risk their lives to find out who did it and the “bad guys” are Middle Eastern extremists. Ok so it is a bit a pro American and they do pick up a “token” middle eastern character during the film but just ignore politics and the news for a bit and sit back an enjoy what is not a half bad thriller.

Thursday, 10 June 2010


A new thing for the blog, top 10’s from my point of view…. Starting of course with my personal top ten movies of all time…

10. The War of the Worlds (2005)
This is a very personal movie and would surprise anyone by being in any critics top ten list. The reason put simply is that I love anything based on the original novel and this adaptation is for me the best film version. Steven Spielberg captures the feel of the novel by keeping it personal; a view of an invasion from one mans perspective. Of course that man is played by Tom Cruise and of course everyone gets pitchforks and torches out for him! I’m going to stand up for the man and say I thought he was very convincing as an irresponsible father. My pick of the scenes would be when they are in the basement of their step fathers house and the Aliens/Martians attack a plane, your not shown any of it just blasted with noise which when I first saw made me almost pee me pants! Of course there are the tense scenes in the basement at the end which are handled very well, and the fact that the fighting machines are actually tripods, yay!

9. The Dark Knight
I have gone on about this movie till I am blue in face, it simply pushed the standard of comic book movies up a notch and showed what could be done with them. In a conversation I was having the other day we were saying we are in a time when everything is being taken a bit more seriously just look at this years take on Robin Hood! One character it hasn’t done any harm to is batman, great film making and a worthy top 10 entry. Best scene, pretty much every time Heath Ledger’s joker is on screen but if forced to pick I would choose the scene between him and Harvey “Two Face” brilliantly acted and shot! You could argue that the film would be no where near as hyped had it not been for the sad passing of Mr Ledger, the sad truth is we will never really know and that’s the worse thing about it. That bitter sweet ending knowing the Joker is still alive but no actor out there alive who can play him.

8. 28 Days Later
In my humble opinion a landmark in British film making and a wake up call for the zombie franchise. Danny Boyle has shown himself a master of various movie styles and to be fair Trainspotting and Slumdog probably deserve to be in here instead of this but it’s my favourite. A star in the making was Cillian Murphy who played the role superbly, showing his descent into the madness at the end with utter conviction. 28 days later for me was one of the scariest films I have ever seen, the most realistic vision of this type of scenario I have ever witnessed. My favourite scene in this film, the attack on the house at the beginning as it is directed so brilliantly, silent camera movements then BANG! The visceral violence is what sets these films apart from other zombie films, in those it’s all about gore and flesh eating; whilst here they just want to pound your face to a bloody pulp. The sequel is also very good and with a hint of a third you can sniff a franchise coming on.

7. Goodfellas
Probably deserves to be higher up the list but then it was tough enough whittling them down to 10! The Godfather isn’t in the list and that’s because I thought one gangster movie and to be honest I do prefer Goodfellas simply because it’s rewatchable time and time again. For me Godfather was enough one time round and though I’ll watch it again at some point I’d still prefer to re watch Goodfellas. This film is a masterwork in Direction and one of the best scenes is the camera as it follows Harry and Karen as they enter a club and are shown to a table in front of the stage; in one long continuous shot showing what a life of crime can give you. My favourite scene, what else but the “What do you mean I’m funny?” scene, Joe Pesci steals the film with one hell of a scary performance! It is a landmark in Gangster movies that in my opinion has not been matched, unless you count a certain HBO series of course.

6. Grosse Pointe Blanke
Another very personal choice, an incredible intelligently written comedy about an assassin with an attack of conscious, a stand out performance by John Cusack and an awesome soundtrack! Favourite scene without a doubt being stared out by a baby as Under Pressure plays in background; nothing puts your life in context like a baby does. As a feel good movie it has everything and for men and women of a certain age it meets several criteria. Moments of slushy romance are dulled by the black comedy and moments of violence are lessened by the witty banter between every single character in the script. It’s just so well written is the bottom line, its clever snappy and charming not to mention very very funny. It’s just a shame John Cusack doesn’t get more roles like this, as in most things specially these days he is a talent wasted.

5. The Usual Suspects
A long time favourite of mine that fooled that hell out of me and I love it when films do that! I also love re watching it just to see how they tricked me! Best scene is the line-up at the beginning that despite the actors losing their cool it was kept in and it works brilliantly! That’s also the recipe that makes the film work so well, the chemistry between the actors is excellent and the film just seems to ooze cool! Bryan Singer ripped a good yarn so to speak and deserved to go on and direct bigger things.

4. Aliens
It’s tough to pick the sequel over what was a fantastic first film but that’s one of the reasons it’s in here. Aliens is not just one of the best films ever its also one of the best sequels ever! It took what Ridley Scott had done and not only placed it into a larger universe but also a different genre, how many directors are brave enough to do that. Who would have thought a film that is basically a stalk and slash horror movie in space be pretty damn good as an action sci-fi? It does so by honouring the original, it’s still scary and the Alien is still kept the same. The things it adds only bring a whole new perspective to the original idea i.e. the alien queen. The human factor has more meaning, not just because there are more to care for but because the chemistry is amazing, I’ve often thought that the first hour or so is the best. No avatar is not in my top ten!

3. Fight Club
It’s really tough not putting this up at number 1; Fight Club is the definitive film of a generation. Ask anyone around my age (26) what their favourite films are and I guarantee Fight Club will come up almost every time! It’s possibly the coolest film ever and fools the hell out of most people who see it for the first time. It is superbly acted by all involved, directed in such a wonderful individual style and based on one hell of a book.

2. Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
Now I could have said all three but the nature of this top ten is that its movies that stand alone not as part of a franchise. However the whole trilogy is amazing and groundbreaking it just that this one, like the books is more linear story telling. What that does is make the story simpler; in turn it also makes it much more emotional. One route and several characters progressing together on a steady but hard journey it’s a classic but it works. The other parts of the trilogy were a little detached due to manically having to cut between characters. That is the only reason though and The Lord of the Rings is one generations Star Wars and will be remembered as such because of everyone involved and their insane attention to detail, that created such a wonderfully in depth fantasy world. My favourite scene; Aragorn’s fight with Lurtz without a doubt!

1. The Shawshank Redemption
Still not 100% whether or not I want to have this at number 1 but I put it there when I wrote this list down and I’m keeping It like that, It’s in a lot of top ten lists and is not a stranger to the number 1 spot. The Shawshank Redemption is the very definition of an inspiring movie, above all it inspires hope. Based on a great book by Stephen King this story of wrongly accused Andy Duframe drags it self through what could potentially be a huge downer. The film has a rather episodic feel of traumatic moments tied together with blind hope; the important thing is that the blind hope wins in the end. In a book I have, someone accuses Shawshank of being too “sentimental”, although he may have a point I think it all depends on your personal connection to the movie and most people see it the way I do. That at the end of the film when you realise after everything he went through that hope really can be found in the darkest of places. Dramatic I know but this film deserves it.

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

X-Men Origins: Wolverine

Repeat viewings blunt the claws

Lover: Taken from IMDB
“I finally watched X-Men Origins: Wolverine today not too sure what to expect hoping for at least traces of the quality of the previous X Men movies which i love. Let me tell you that i was blown away by this incredible movie and dare i say was the best out of the series. It is action packed and the story line is superb, I was glued to the TV without wanting even to look away for a moment scared id miss something. I found X-Men Origins: Wolverine far more entertaining than Watchmen and several so called blockbusters.Whether you're are an x-Men fan or not do yourself a favor and watch this, I'm sure you'll be pleasantly surprised...”

I can see where this person is coming from I was swept up by it the first time I saw it but by no means is this the best Xmen related feature!
Hater: Taken from IMDB
“Close to one of the worst films I have ever seen. The story is so rushed it leaves you asking questions of why? With more focus on the visuals the story seems very slap dash and they have managed to ruin probably one of the best comic book characters. They need to focus at least more on his back story and perhaps the relationship with mutant group established by Stryker. Also they touched upon other characters within the Weapon X Project and then quickly skipped over, as soon as they came in they quickly left (trying not to give anything away). The biggest disappointment, especially after so much hype. This could have been something great. Also with Magneto in the pipeline as well, could they ruin another part of the X-Men saga.”

As time has gone (I have watched it about 4 times now) Wolverine has become a great big toy commercial set to line studio bosses pockets. So I’m kinda leaning more to this guy now.

What I thought:
The first thing I feel I should touch on is plot holes, this film is full of them and makes no effort to resolve them what so ever! Making some of the other mutants who make a cameo just that; a cameo! There is no exploration as to why some of these mutants, some of them stealing the screen when on it (Ryan Reynolds, Dominic Monohaughn) just appear and disappear as the script writers saw fit. Secondly the opening sequence whilst attractive to look at is just that! How did they end up in all of these wars and why is Sabretooth such a psycho?

All of these plot holes can be filled in if you know something about the comics but make no sense if you don’t. I guess on a personal level I hate it because I waited so long to see Gambit in one of these movies and what do I get? Some pubescent loser who plays him with no charm what-so-ever, such a waste of what is a great character!

It’s such a shame when they do this but the Wolverine sequel based on the samurai storyline sounds ten time better, fingers or craws crossed ah? For more on the world of the Xmen and Wolverine read my feature on the right.

Tuesday, 1 June 2010


Hater: Taken from Tesco DVD rental
“If you enjoyed Ang Lee's superior version of this superhero character I'd give this a wide berth. Gone is the character development and stylistic verve of Lee's underrated film as the focus switches mainly to action. Sadly it isn't enough action to keep you entertained during the moments of character emotions as the director wallows in genre conventions and lacks the touch to deliver anything from the characters themselves. A star-studded cast is given no help by dialoge that sounds it was written by a fanboy leaving the actors to look clumsy in their performances. There's not even room to ham it up the script is that poor. There are some decent action sequences along the way but the film drags tremendously when it's not 'Hulk bash!' and you end up feeling like you've just watched any old franchise film. Rent Ang Lee's version if you're looking for somebody doing something different with a superhero character not this.”
Who wants someone to do something different with a superhero character? I’ll grant you it works for Batman but then he’s been re done so many times! This is the Hulk and I’m sorry I don’t care what you say Ang Lee’s Hulk was pants!

Lover: Taken from Tesco DVD rental
“After the previous attempt to bring Hulk to the big screen overran by at least 45 mins, I was hoping that this latest offering would fare better. I was not disappointed. Edward Norton was great in this role & Tim Roth was equally as good as contender for the biggest & toughest dude in town. The fight scenes were spectacular & I loved the twist at the end featuring a future hero. I hope there's a sequel to this, as it was far better than The Hulk. Much faster pace & better plot. I'd definitely have this in my collection!”

That’s a bit more like it!

What I thought:
Firstly, comic book movies are supposed to be FUN! Even the Dark Knight with its moody feel was fun to watch! Ang Lee’s arrogant character exploration was not and I repeat not, fun! Not to mention the fact his Hulk liked to change size at moments in the film! Edward Norton first of all is great casting as Bruce Banner, this character is a science nerd with a lot of in cased anger, its part of the reason why the Hulk creature is so angry in the first place. All Mr Norton had to do was channel Fight Club and you’ve got it, except instead of Brad Pitt it’s a great big green monster.

The Incredible Hulk also has lots of great winks to the comics and the old TV Series, which should please fanboys and even more importantly with the appearance of one Tony Stark; tie itself in with the Marvel Studio Franchise. Please let Edward Norton’s Hulk be in the avengers!!!

For more from me about this movie check out my full review on the right.

About Me

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"Films are Loved, Films are hated. I'm here to help you decide where you stand..." I also do web work including a good knowledge of HTML, ASP, using the adobe web package and a strong understanding of SEO, Google Analytics.