The Secret Life of Walter Mitty – Movie Review!

“Walter Mitty (Stiller) oversees analogue photographic images for Life magazine; he’s an outwardly quiet, sensible man, who carefully manages his income so he can support his widowed mother (Shirley MacLaine) and his sister (Kathryn Hahn). Many of Mitty’s colleagues mock him for being boring but, inside his head, he regularly embarks on fantastical exploits that are invariably intended to win the heart of a more sympathetic colleague, Cheryl (Wiig). However, real life is about to catch up with his fantasies. The search for a missing photographic negative will impel Mitty to set out on an adventure-packed global quest to track down the photo’s elusive photographer (Penn), and also bring him closer to the woman he secretly loves”

Release date: December 2013

Director: Ben Stiller

Run time: 1 hr 54 mins

IMDB: 7.3/10

A lighthearted comedy romance focused on one man and his elaborate and fantasy filled life, soon taking a turn for the better when he is forced to go on a real world adventure. Long gone are the daydreams plaguing Walter, here comes a brave tale of one man who frightfully mirrors a lot of people in the real world, including myself.

He works as a photograph processor for Life magazine, he is kind and visibly shy or quite. He takes his job seriously and has been processing pictures in a series for wild adventurer Shaun who is on the move sending photos to Walter for the magazine. We Can see early on his issues with confidence, he isn’t even confident enough to wink at a woman he likes on his dating site that he uses and he also pays someone to manage his profile for him. It is part comedy, but also given the nature of the way he is disrespected at work, we know he just wants a quite life. He lives in his head, daydreaming of saving people, of making himself a superhero, of doing good. This is to bypass his life in reality, to make it easier, or maybe he can’t help it.

His mother and sister know of this zoning out as Walter calls it. His name has become associated with those who dream of being something they are not, such as fake war heroes which have been referred to as Walter Mittys. The story takes a great turn when somewhat boring Walter is forced to go looking for a missing photograph or get fired by his bully boss. It takes him to Greenland where he takes the decision to then go by helicopter to Iceland, and from there beyond, involving a huge mountain.

We can see that his work is important and he is doing all this for work and it is slightly saddening, but as he continues his adventure, such as a lovely and wonderful skateboard downhill in the most scenic part of the movie, we see him moving from the work to actually enjoying himself. Toward the end of the film, he climbs the mountain, encounters Shaun, by chance, and at that point I knew that work was no in his mind.

The pair sit there waiting for a snow leopard, referred to as a ghost, the pair, Shaun and Walter, take in the moment and Walter realises what matters in life. That the moment there, where the picture isn’t taken, is more important to take a chance to get there and enjoy than to waste it worrying. Nonetheless, he as learned a valuable lesson. He is informed that the missing photograph was already sent to him in a wallet which he discarded. He does not know what the picture is.

After returning home, he hands the picture to his ex boss, even though he was fired, he persevered and completed Shauns work for him. Leaving a legacy at Life magazine despite losing his job. It is a really heart felt ending. As Walter, seemingly closer to the woman he loves, comes to see the picture on the Life magazine. The final photo was of Walter, dedicated to all those at Life magazine. This is such a lovely moment and is so so perfect when considering his old boss didn’t even know the company motto, and Walter in the end had the courage to stand up for what is right. He took the higher ground by giving the photo over, by accepting who he is.

I think this film was under appreciated when I first saw it. I think it is worth it.

Rating: 4/5

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The Fast and The Furious: Remembering Paul Walker

The first movie in the franchise, The Fast and The Furious, was released in 2001, 20 years ago. It was a high octane racing thriller and captivated youths all over the modern world. Everybody wanted to be either Vin Diesel or Paul Walker (Dom and Brian). A film that spawned the biggest grossing series in the world, with the first movie ranking in $206,512,310!

What really kickstarted the series was Paul Walker, an undercover FBI agent. See, he’d starred in other movies, but the Fast and the Furious films were what he was and is still known for. First starring alongside Vin Diesel in the first movie, then being the star of the second, and reuniting with Vin for number 4. Film 4 and 5 was where we start to see a competitiveness between the actors to be the lead. Vin had vanished for movie 2 and made a brief appearance at the end of movie 3, Tokyo Drift. The 3rd movie, Tokyo Drift, was never my favourite, I preferred the first 2 movies. At the time though it didn’t matter, you liked it and you were cool, didn’t like and you were living in the past of the first movie.

The movies could arguable be the reason for video games such as Need for Speed: Underground released in 2003, and Need for Speed: Underground 2 released in 2004. Don’t forget Burnout, released in 2001. I played all 3 and I preferred Need for Speed, simply because of the car customisation which was a huge part of the first few Fast and Furious movies. They went from being crime films full of octane chases and races, to more of action thrillers where the cars customisation took the backseat. I still like the movies and for me number 7, Paul Walkers last movie, was my favourite. I still have to see the 9th movie!

So, what happened? Obviously Paul passed away in 2013, after the release of Fast and Furious 6. Making a digital appearance for number 7. It was known that he loved cars in real life as well as being in the Hollywood success series. The 6th movie also introduced Dwayne Johnson, which was a surprise. What was a bigger suprise was that he stayed on in the following movies. Going from antagonist to friend of the group.

See, Paul Walker starred in the first few movies, helping to build up the franchise and make it what it is today. Sadly, not everybody wanted that. He brought to the series a likeable character. Overshadowed by one person and pushed to the back seat a lot of the time, which we start to see in 2009 releases Fast and Furious.

We can’t change the past, but we can appreciate that Walker played the main character, Brian O’Connor in the first movies and added that undercover cop magic. The series grew, so did the income, so it was really not a surprise to see more recognisable faces showing up, like Dwayne Johnson, like Kurt Russel. The excellent spin off movie, still a part of the franchise, Hobbs and Shaw, starring Johnson and Jason Statham! Yes, an epic combination and to be honest, one of the best films I have seen in terms of action and plot. It still retains that Fast and Furious seal of approval, the upgrading of vehicles, the car chases. The crew of the series did well to integrate this spin off. See, Jason Statham, if memory proves correct, made a brief appearance at the end of one of the Fast and Furious movies. I think it was number 7, and then then film ends. So, to bring him back in film 8 (?) been a while since watching, was a good idea. An ideal villain. Anyway the spin off was good.

Back when the franchise was starting Paul and Vin were the only big stars in the movie that people cared about. There was Michelle Rodriguez though, who turned heads. She stayed in the series until film 4, Fast and Furious, in which she was killed and the plot evolved around Dom trying to avenge her. It was a rather emotional entry in the series. But fear not, she magically comes back in a later movie and sticks around. Rodriguez did go on to star in films like Resident Evil.

If the series continues, and no doubt it will, because of the money, then lets hope they go back to a time when the film was about the races, the upgrading of cars, and the neon lights on the streets of Los Angeles. The movies still have cars and fast chases, but the original movies were about racing. They lined up, some women in tight shirts would wave the banner and then they race. There was nitrous, there were crashes, and there was winners and losers. It felt very real. The newer movies don’t feel quite the same.

This has been a remembrance of Paul Walker’s contribution to the franchise, without whom it would not be where it is today. For the sake of clarity, I like the movies.

The Rock : Movie Review!

I thought I had reviewed this classic action movie from the 90s! I am now reviewing it!

Where the heck do I begin with another all time favourite of mine. I absolutely love The Rock, along with Face/Off and Con Air! All 90s action movies starring Nicolas Cage. I recently re-watched them all as they have all just been added to Amazon Prime! $%@& me!

“Hugely improbable and hugely entertaining action thriller about a mild-mannered scientist (Nicolas Cage) and a hardened ex-con (Sean Connery) who join Navy SEALs in an attempt to retake Alcatraz from terrorists.”

Release date: 1996 (United States)

Director: Michael Bay

Gross revenue: $335.10 million

Run time: 2 hours 16 minutes (finished about 2 hours 5 minutes)

Starring: Nicolas Cage, Sean Connery, Ed Harris

A blockbuster movie set in the heart of San Francisco on the infamous ex prison island Alcatraz. The Rock is one of the most well known movies to be set on this island, and the movie and the plot, the acting, action scenes and generally overall theme including music, lighting, tension and drama are enough to make this one of the greatest movies of all time. The other movie set on Alcatraz which I really find amazing is the Clint Eastwood movie Escape from Alcatraz. (

Let us begin. We are introduce immediately to a rogue unit of military men who are seemingly breaking into a secure facility and stealing some potent vx poison gas rockets. They are doing this so that they can get some type of compensation for the fallen men of the military who have gone without a proper military burial and whose families have been left with nothing. This is quite true and unfortunately is still happening, the sad reality is that many courageous men, women and young people are giving their lives for their countries and are being disgraced by a government who won’t acknowledge them. This film takes that to the extreme, although cases of rogue soldiers and hostage situations are real and are happening as we speak.

Enter Stanley Goodspeed (an FBI chemical weapons specialist with a love of the Beatles and other classic music, note a reference to Elton John’s Rocket Man later on toward the end of the movie). He has been prepping for this moment throughout his career, and is thrust from the lab to the frontline by the FBI and the USA government to assist a cutting edge marine core unit who are assigned with entering Alcatraz, and disabling the vx poison gas rockets. Little does he know that the FBI is also seeking the help of John Patrick Mason (Sean Connery), an ex Alcatraz inmate who previously escaped and knows the ins and outs of the island and is therefore the best person to assist the team. Mason has a history of being trained by British intelligence and knows a shed load of state secrets, and was held without trial for most of his life until he gave up intelligence that he had.

Goodspeed (God Speed) is soon getting acquainted with Mason in San Francisco as he is being lied to in order to assist the FBI. All the while Frank Hummel is leading the rogue soldiers on Alcatraz with Tom Baxter and giving the government 17 hours to pay up. Mason is cleaned up in a nice hotel and I must say this is the start of one hell of a big action sequence involving a car chase. Mason escapes said hotel after distracting the FBI agents by ordering room service (LOL) and is soon hijacking a Hummer and flooring it across that all so famous San Francisco landscape. Stanley Goodspeed, out of some kind of responsibility to do the right thing, and being aware of the serious threat from Alcatraz and the poison, is soon pursuing Mason in a yellow Ferrari. It’s literally all down hill and carnage and mayhem ensue as the FBI and police are in hot pursuit. They can’t exactly arrest Mason since they requested his help in the first place!

Mason ends up evading the law for a brief while to visit his daughter. Goodspeed however is still following and informs them of the location. I guess we can imagine how hard Mason had it being locked up away from his daughter for years, and Goodspeed does the honorable thing when the law turns up and tells Mason’s daugther that he is assisting with an important FBI matter. It’s got the humour in this movie that I love, as soon as Mason’s daughter has gone, Goodspeed is soon grilling Mason on his pain from the car chase.

It’s time for the team to start moving into Alcatraz. Informed of the mission. Mason soon learns Goodspeed is in fact a chemical weapons expert and remarks that he was lying about being a field agent, and that he shouldn’t get them fucking killed. Good writing. It’s an underwater start to enter the island. With an ex con to guide the team and Goodspeed to assist, things go wrong fairly quick. The rogue militants on the island have booby trapped every entrance and after triggering a sphere alarm system, whist trying to enter the bathroom/shower room of the island, the elite navy seal team are now at the mercy of the mercenaries. It’s a brutal massacre of every member of the team except Mason and Goodspeed, and from that point on, there is a cat and mouse pursuit and Hummel knows of their presence, yet cannot find them.

It is only when Mason tries to leave that Goodspeed is forced to explain the situation to Mason. Disappointed with the news and fearful for his daughter, Mason, maybe out of a some sort of moral righteousness, decides to stay and help. Given that it is over 2km back to shore, realistically how could he get back without being caught? Things are tense, things are dark and wet and the duo, although chalk and cheese, do make a good team. Acting is great and the pair have a chemistry that I found echoed that in Cages other movies like Con Air and Face/Off. It is not often that such pairings are found in modern movies, save for The Fast and the Furious. Although The Rock in an action movie, it is I believe about working together and forming friends for the greater good. So although they may not like each other, and this is evident to an extent, the two have to work together to defeat a threat greater than themselves. Without this cooperation, neither could survive.

Although the marines are determined to kill the innocent citizens of the city and are holding 81 hostages, they have a plan, and they expect that plan to be executed. So, when Mason and Goodspeed interrupt this plan, it starts to reveal cracks in General Hummels moral mindset. Mason understands that such a man would not kill the innocent, but Goodspeed is unsure. The marines themselves have doubts. Soon the pair are killing off the marines, derailing the plan and having an awesome shoot out in some old mine in the belly of Alcatraz. The vx gas rockets guidance chips are being destroyed and Hummel, short on time, is pressure to fire. He decides to launch, and at the last moment stops the rocket confirming that Mason was right about him. This leaves one rocket left, and plenty of crazy marines. It is also the time when Mason and Goodspeed witness the general being killed by his men as they attempt to overthrow him.

Left with no choice, the remaining marines are determined to launch the final rocket and our duo heroes are still battling to stop the rocket. Unfortunately due to the previous vx poison gas rocket launch, the president has now authorised a bombing strike on the island. Cage is fighting to disarm the rocket and counting down to the moment the jets are dropping bomb on him, it is pure anxiety. We want the hero to succeed and we want the world to be safer.

Cage disarms the rocket, and is blown into the water, Mason saves him. This is our ending, an unlikely pair who happen to save 81 hostages, after what seems to be a massive glorious action movie. All of this takes place within an hour in movie time, yet it feels like more, this is clever movie making. The crammed action does not give you chance for breath. There is not a dull moment. A bittersweet ending sees Mason leave and Goodspeed off with his wife and future child.

We all love that sort of feeling. A story worth telling, a movie worth watching, a feeling worth having.

This film made my childhood along with other Cage action classics. You have to watch this if you haven’t.

Rating : 5/5

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Face/Off – Movie Review!

Obsessed with bringing terrorist Castor Troy (Nicolas Cage) to justice, FBI agent Sean Archer (John Travolta) tracks down Troy, who has boarded a plane in Los Angeles. After the plane crashes and Troy is severely injured, possibly dead, Archer undergoes surgery to remove his face and replace it with Troy’s. As Archer tries to use his disguise to elicit information about a bomb from Troy’s brother, Troy awakes from a coma and forces the doctor who performed the surgery to give him Archer’s face.”

Ranking 7.2 on IMDB and 92% on Rotten Tomatoes!

Face/Off, one of Nicolas Cage biggest 90s movies. They magical days of Cages career in a 90s decade which saw him in blockbusters movies like Con Air, The Rock, Face/Off, Snake Eyes, 8mm, Kiss of Death, Leaving Las Vegas and City of Angels among others.

Run time : 2 hours 18 mins

Director: John Woo

Genre : Action

Starring: Nicolas Cage, John Travolta

Trailer for 1997 Face/off

This is one of the greatest movies ever made, one of my all time favourites and one of Nicolas Cage and John Travolta best movies. It has all the material for a blockbuster action film, including guns fights, fist fights, terrorism, gangsters, crazy protagonists and more than enough likeable characters.

The highlight of this movie is the acting, really superb, surpassing many movies that either actor did after the year 2000. The movie starts with deluded terrorist Castor Troy being apprehended by FBI agent Sean Archer after many years of pursuing him following the murder of Archers son. It has all seemingly been settled, until they discover a bomb will go off and the FBI induct Archer into a top secret program to remove his face and replace it with Castor Troy who is currently in a coma, or so they think. After receiving Troys face, Archer is brought to a secret prison, where inmates are forced to wear metallic magnetic boots which they cannot take off. It is a sadistic prison and Archer, wearing Castors face, has to not only blend in but convince others he is who he says he is, including the terrorists brother, who has doubts.

Not long after extracting the information on the bombs location, Archer is ready to be removed from the prison, however, Troy has escaped, and killed the only people who know about the operation. This is also one of the points I did not understand, surely more than 2 people would know about this, but it addsto the tension and the fear. When Archer is visited in prison by Troy, wearing Archers face, both him and the audience will feel their hearts drop. I know I did, because it really is quite a scary moment in movie history, and the worst part is that these sorts of things are possible.

But this is where the magic happens, as Archer is breaking down, and Castor is reveling in his new found FBI career and new found wife and daughter, we see an incredible transformation in acting and I really believe they studied each other well. As Troy is living with Archers family, the first time I watched this movie, and still to this day, I was surprised that he did not hurt the wife or daugther, physically or sexually. I think it shows a different part of the bad guy, and also shows up how crazy he really is. He even tells the FBI where the bomb is to become an American hero, and free his brother at the same time.

See the source image
Sean Archer as criminal Castor Troy in prison.

I suppose it can be a little confusing when talking about it, but when you watch it I cannot imagine anyone struggling to understand, although when I first watched it I found it slightly difficult to grasp that they were the opposite person because again, the scenes, acting and storyline were convincing.

Of course, what would a 90s action movie be without action. It has plenty of guns fights, plenty of antagonist and protagonist chases and plenty of tensions. Soon, Archer has escaped the prison and brings the fight to the city where he encounters some of Troys well known friends. He also discovers that Troy has a girlfriend of sorts and a son. See, Archer is a FBI agent who caught this major criminal, and he still retains that goodness throughout as he doesn’t actually kill anyone, tries not to, by shooting to the side and maybe disarming. This is important as it shows a clear difference between the real Troy and Archer, yet, nobody knows, and this is blending. He has successfully blended with the criminal world and convinced them that he is still that bad guy. Back to Troys son, Archer does in a sense lie to the mother by saying that he will keep the son safe. This is sort of true, but if he really was Castor Troy it would be lies. At the end of the movie, Archer takes in the son, seemingly to replace his own deceased son Mike.

Before the finale, we have this tens church scene with Troy and Archer. It leads to a gun fight, and a boat chase. One of the most memorable and brilliant endings in any movie, up there with The Rock. It also kept me on edge, as Archer has now convinced his wife, but not his daughter, that he is wearing the bad guys face. This naturally leads to the FBI coming in, with this information and helping, at the end once Archer shoots Troy with a spear. A gruesome death.

I feel like the ending is bittersweet and I never want the movie to end. But of course it does, and it just always feels like a massive action adventure with enough heart and goodness that one can enjoy for many years.

I watched this on Amazon Prime the other day as it was recently added. I had not seen it for years so when it popped up I thought, that is a paid movie or a mistake. They never have movies like this on streaming, probably because it is actually good.

I recommend this movie to anyone who likes action, Nicolas cage or just good 90s movies.

Rating; 5/5

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Zombie for Sale: Movie Review!

Run time: 1hr 52

‘When a pharmaceutical company’s illegal experiments inadvertently create a zombie, the strange Park family finds it and tries to profit from it.’

Wow, the south Koreans have done it again with an awesomely terrifying, and this time, hilarious zombie comedy! From a country that has pumped out really imaginative and innovative zombies movies that frightened the life out of me, like #Alive on Netflix and Train to Busan (and the 2nd movie, Peninsula) comes something of a fairly creative yet effective take on the zombie genre. It has all the aesthetic one could want, huge Romero and Shaun of the Dead vibes, and decidedly knows how it is going to play out. It’s half comedy, half horror, by the time the scary dead arrive you’ll be fairly connected to the cast of characters.

Meet the Odd family. They run a small gas station, which I think provides a fantastic set piece, among the acres of hills and mountains that surround them and the small town where the dead take over. It all starts with a zombie, that zombie happens to be a lone wandered and nobody knows what he is until suddenly, after failing to kill him, this Odd family take him in, let their own father be bitten, and then turn it into a business. A zombie that eats lettuce by the way and is semi aware. That’s what they were into before, scamming people by setting traps to cause damage to vehicles. Now, they want to bite you and give you the thrill for a fee. Absolutely absurd, stupid idiotic and silly!

That’s what I love about this movie, it’s silly. Silly humour, yet manages to pull of the seriousness of the situation with comedy perfectly. I can’t count how many times I laughed, because say someone sets off fireworks at a gas station to distract the zombies, or the fact the family are so disjointed at times it is hilarious.

Of all the things in this movie, the way it took the focus off the negative and focused on the positive was a big plus. I enjoy movies that have an arc that ends upbeat. After we see the father biting people for money it is not long before the entire population is zombified and back for flesh. The father vanishes, returning at the end of the movie supposedly immune, he came back in Hawaiian shirt and hat. Yes, there is the immune survivors.

Considering this is a foreign movie I expected it to be of lower quality. This is most certainly not the case as I mentioned above, south Koreans really do a great job of zombies. They know have to choreograph and use their artistic and directive skills to make them realistic whilst providing what I consider to be some of the better stories in recent zombie movie. Flashback to Shaun of the Dead – original and groundbreaking, a huge smash hit in the UK. 28 days Later – another groundbreaking and terrifyingly memorable experience. Heck even Zombieland took things to a new level!

See the source image
Maybe not a Hawaiian shirt, but certainly seems to have come back from their? The man on the end is very similar to Glenn from the Walking Dead when at the prison, when he wore the riot gear.

The difference is that foreign movies and western movies from rich countries is that people automatically, I believe, place them in the category of inferiority. They shouldn’t. Maybe I’ve just got lucky that these foreign movies are about zombies which is my favourite genre.

Back to the movie. Some poor lady is pregnant during it! Yes, it is complicated. But all has a happy ending. The ending takes things to a familiar place, even though the film was released in 2019. The immune father, and the others, take a fortified campervan and begin to bite the zombies to reverse the illness and cure them. Ironic circle there. The camper is covered in writing such as ‘vaccination’ and the cause of the original zombie was that he escaped from a pharmaceutical lab with human experimentation. It was slightly uncomfortable to draw those connections but oh well, it’s not like anybody really cares.

This movie is also by Arrow Films! I didn’t realise they still made original stuff! It develops slowly and at a suitable rate, some films are slow and boring, however it held my interest and the location is quite eye pleasing. When things pick up, it becomes slightly scary but not terrifying which I believe makes this great. The comedy aspect helps to keep this watchable although there was a few moments when I felt like I could not watch.

I recommend someone to spend 1 hour 50 minutes watching this well thought out laugh fest, full of silly humour and a story about family and life. I had to use subtitles but not an issue. I also found this on Amazon Prime by mistake, but there are no mistakes, just happy accidents.

Rest in peace.

Rating: 5/5

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Anna and the Apocalypse! Movie Review

A cracking zombie comedy apocalypse musical! Among the funnier zombie movies over the last 20 years. Up there with the likes of Shaun of the Dead! Great British musical, with talented cast and effective cinematography. You want to watch this in the festive season, it puts you right in the mood.

Young British schoolgirl. Anna. A group of friends. A high school party. A zombie invasion. The music starts and you get singing. Really not what I expected. I was really glad that someone had the initiative to make a zombie musical, because it really works well. British cast make this even more special. Helps to make it feel like Christmas. I would also say it is similar to the video game Dead Rising 4, set during the holidays at the Willamette mall.

What this movie seems to pull off so well is the essence or theme and feel of close friends battling for their lives. I really enjoyed the scene at the bowling alley because it has an awesome set piece, with great lighting and just the right amount of comedy and singing to make it mega fun. Rated at 15, this movie is probably okay for children. Maybe I was an outcast, but when I watched Shaun of the Dead on its release I was not 15. The ratings board will always be there to protect the children from something that they see regularly on gaming consoles because their parents bought them it, or on billboards or in the street. Movies are the last thing to affect children. Anyway, 15 is more of a marker of a target audience.

What will a zombie comedy be without poor use of weapons and a bunch of egoist teens? Probably boring. The film had a run time of 1 hour 30 mins approx.

Not much else to say other than it is not too late to watch this movie. Watch it in April.

Forgot to add the rating! 4/5

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Oliver! – British Classics

Released in 1968, set in 1830s London and one of the most loved British musicals ever to grace the screens, this gem is always going to have a special place in cinematography.

Amongst one of the longer movies of the 20th Century, musical movies that is, and among the most popular, comes a tale of a young so called orphan, Oliver! Dragged from the workhouse for boys to the coffin filled rooms of the not so nice mortician, Oliver soon finds an escape after a dark start to the film, and makes his way to the big city, London!

One of the highlights of this movie is the set design. I really enjoy that because every set, dress costume and just aesthetic feel like the 1800’s, if I knew what it was like to be alive then. I praise the movies historical accuracy, especially one of the core themes, the difference between the rich and the poor. Oliver is soon embarking into the life of crime with Artful Dodger (Jack Wild) and Fagin (Ron Moody), skillfully directed by Carol Reed. Of course, what crime life isn’t complete without a bad guy, true bad man Bill Sikes (Oliver Reed) is one of modern films more harrowing villains.

All of this is accumulating rather quickly, Oliver is learning the ropes of pick pocketing. Only when a first job goes wrong, and he is being chased by police… soon in Magistrates… soon in the home of the very gentlemen he was accused of robbing. All of this is turning the tables, we expect this poor boy, an orphan will not fit in. In fact this act of kindness really helped us to empathize with Oliver more. He’s come a long way, and the trouble is still brewing. Bill Sikes don’t like the sound of Oliver living among the rich, especially since the risk of being grassed on is so high.

But we know that Oliver is good, enjoying his new life. A lot of song and dance really cast hope for him. Only later will we know that the rich gentlemens niece, by the miraculous miracle of movie magic, is Oliver’s mother. So it is claimed, the truth is that this is never proven. But hope can and will. You get into the film, really into each scene and I don’t like it when I know it will end, but it must.

Oliver has his final showdown with Bill Sikes. Fagin and the boys are just business criminals and nothing more or less, they never cared for Oliver. Of course, it takes the sacrifice of Sikes girlfriend Nancy to save Oliver from the clutches of the evil. But she does not succeed, instead meeting her demise at his hands. Such metaphorical and allegorical plays here, a movie within a movie. The good and evil battle rages on.

It’s a classic and it’s worth watching. A journey of struggle and reward. Much to be liked and much to be remembered. Did I mention set design? Choreography? Acting? Brilliant.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

5 stars, because it’s hard to find a movie like this anymore.

No Time To Die – Movie review!

Released on the 30th September 2021.

The newest and longest James Bond movie has finally arrived into UK cinemas.

I am a big James Bond fan, and have been since I was a young child. I know every film inside out. After Spectre I was excited to see Daniel Craig in his last James Bond movie. What can I say? The last 5 movies of his have been enjoyable. Starting strong with unforgettable Casino Royale, before moving onto Quantum of Solace, then Skyfall, to Spectre before reaching No time to die.

Where to start. The runtime is mega, making this is the longest Bond movie at 2:43. Originally, George Lazenby starred in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service which until Casino Royale was the longest running at 2:22. Why do I need to mention George’s Bond movie? Well…

No Time To Die tips its hat at Lazenby’s Bond movie. We get to here that song, all the time in the world, and certain plot points are rather similar, although it has been twisted. I also found references to other Bond movies. I guess this was how it used to be in the previous films, but more so in this and I put it down to being Craigs last movie, in which they wanted nostalgia to triumph over story. There is an annoying point to get across early on, I did feel as if there was a lot of advertising in this movie, and at one point I felt like the movie was nothing but an advertisement. It saddened me, Bond was never about product placement or trying to sell something. It was about a secret agent. This does detract from the movie for me, and I encourage the next director or film crew to forget about it… Bond has made enough dollar that you don’t need product placement.

Another huge familiarity is to the first ever James Bond movie. Yes. Dr No (1962) is elegantly seen in the new plot and movie. As you recall, Dr No in the original first ever Bond was a nuclear scientist working for Spectre. I see big similarities between Dr No and new and improve villain, played extremely well by Rami Malek, enemy Safin. Even though Blofeld is back in this movie, he is not actually in it very much. To get this out there, he and Safin are not working together. I want to point that out, so you don’t go thinking the new world domination goal is spectre… no, they’re just in the background and to be honest, aren’t really serving much of a purpose. Bond finds himself in Cuba, in a busy club full of spectre agents… he does not get killed even when Blofeld exposes him… at this point it’s safe to say spectre posed absolutely no threat whatsoever in the movie. But that particular scene, in the rich, elite club, does highlight some very disturbing things:

  • Some guests wear some variety of mask – almost venetian
  • Some guests wear animal masks, now that is extremely unnecessary in a Bond movie. Who ever thought that a good idea should think long and hard about why they would need to do that.
  • The entire scene stinks of something, and it doesn’t smell like Spectre.
  • It detracts entirely from the movie, and yet adds absolutely nothing of value

Now, without trying to spoil anything, let’s move onto the good points. There are some strong scenes, and the villain is one of the more frightening in a Bond movie. He’s into some strange hobbies, like keeping and maintaining particular types of plants. He wants to kill everyone on the planet.

Gadgets are minimal again which is something that has let the last 5 movies down. Gadgets were and should be a big part of a spy movie, especially something this recognised. I think bringing James Bond back from the dead – retirement – was a good way to start the story. This movie did have a more well developed storyline and it actually allowed us to see things through.

We get the return of familiar faces and Felix Lighter is finally back. We also have some great action scenes and amazing set design and explosions. Bond suffers a lot at the hands of explosions in this movie and I wonder whether the stunt man made it. Going back to the Cuba scenes, we get introduced to the famous face of black woman Lashana Lynch. She will divide fans, because of what the writers have done around her character. But, she is a good ally and edition and there is no talk of her taking over which is what divided fans after seeing the trailer and listening to interviews prior to the movies release. Daniel Craig is also getting old, and it’s time he moved on, so bringing some young women in was essential. Talking women, this is the only Bond film I think ever where he doesn’t sleep with more than 1 woman… he’s in love with Madeleine Swann (played well by Lea Seydoux, French actress), daughter of former Quantum of Solace and Spectre agent Mr. White (originally in Casino Royale). This is an important point in the movie. Her ties with Spectre are somewhat of a brick in the head for Bond!

I can’t say much other than watching in IMAX is how it is supposed to be viewed. Whatever. Watch it how you want. I’m upset and disappointed by the ending of the movie. I could forget and put aside some of the other extremely questionable writing decisions, but the ending is pretty unforgivable and it has reduced the movie by 1 star. I still think the movie is a good addition and worth watching, and it did bring back some of that witty humour we’ve been missing for years, and vodka martinis and fight scenes. Bond is all over the globe again, great!

No Time To Die – no time to forget that movie. Perhaps we will see nothing of Bond again.

Overall rating: comprised multiple ratings:

Action and adventure –

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Acting and characters –

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Bond theme –

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Story and development –

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Ending –

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Stonehearst Asylum: Movie review.


A British powerhouse movie, starring some well known names: Kate Beckinsale, Jim Sturgess, David Thewlis, Ben Kingsley, Michael Caine & Brendan Gleeson.

Running at 1 hour and 52 mins with an IMDB rating of 6.8/10.

“The year is 1899, and medical school graduate Edward Newgate (Jim Sturgess) is the newest clinical recruit at Stonehearst: a mental asylum for the privileged and wealthy. He’s keen to gain as much experience as possible, but Edward observes the techniques of his superior Dr Silas Lamb (Kingsley) with increasing concern, as Lamb’s practice strays far from convention.”

Set within an isolated asylum, this is a gothic, haunting psychological thriller. I watched it last night, and I could vaguely recall some details so I suspect I have watched it before. Overall it was good, with good acting and an interesting storyline. Of course, it is based on Edgar Allan Poe’s Gothic-thriller Eliza Graves.

Edward Newgate arrives at the asylum which is in the midst of winter. It isn’t long before he is suspicious and it is revealed fairly soon that Dr Lamb, the man in charge, is in fact crazy and has locked up the staff and is essentially letting the crazies run the asylum. So, what does the doctor do?

Throughout there is talk of escaping with patient Eliza, but nothing comes of this. Instead, Lamb becomes increasingly disturbed and conducts some horrific experiments, saying that the whole show is essentially a big ‘experiment’ and he doesn’t believe in conventional medicine. Lamb is an ex military doctor.

Newgate soon discovers there is no way to escape without taking out Lamb and helping the other staff escape. It all escalates to a point where Eliza is forced to save Newgate from electrotherapy, during a conversation which reveals that he has followed the lady there all the way from London where he witnessed his professor conducting an experiment on her.

Slightly obsessive and deranged. Newgate has to crack the code or secret to the mad Dr Lambs mental condition. In the words of Dr Salt (Michael Caine), he has to crack him.

The film raises some good ethical and philosophical points, including treating patients without medication and instead allowing them to express themselves, and that compassion goes a long way in treating the insane. But take note that this takes place at the turn of the 20th century, 120 years ago when psychiatry was primitive and experimental.

Overall a good watch with some cracking acting. I would of liked to see Caine play a bigger role and Gleeson, but that was not the case and it’s Thewlis with the most screen time after Sturgess and Kingsley.


Rating: 4 out of 5.

Guns Akimbo : Movie Review!

A action, thriller, comedy starring Daniel Radcliffe. On Amazon Prime. Great and hilarious entertainment. I really enjoyed the humour in this film.

6.3 from IMDB. 95 mins runtime. Starring Daniel Radcliffe, Samara Weaving, Ned Dennehy.

“In an alternative near future, an underground fight club and a criminal organization known as Skizm has achieved massive popularity by live-streaming real death matches between criminals and psychos. Ordinary computer programmer Miles Lee Harris, who gets his kicks by trolling online trolls, logs into Skizm’s forum to insult viewers who turn murder into entertainment. Riktor, the criminal kingpin and psychopath who runs Skizm, breaks into Miles’ apartment with his henchmen Dane, Effie, and Fuckface. After being beaten and drugged, Miles wakes up to find guns bloodily bolted into both of his hands. Miles learns that he has been forced to participate in Skizm by being pitted against Nix, the game’s deadliest and craziest killer; she wants out but Riktor requires she kill one last opponent – Miles.”

I watched this movie last night. It continually appeared on my home page on Amazon Prime. I took a chance and really enjoyed this film.

With pistols bolted to his hands, Miles, the good guy, is forced to fight for his life in a sick live stream deathmatch which usually sees ex cons face off against each other until one kills the other. After a night in, when Miles decided to troll in the comments of the illegal tournament, that is how they find him. They also track him during the fight.

What was good: there was good action, dark humour and acting. The storyline was good and easy to follow and allowed you as the viewer to sit back and just let it sink in without too much thinking. An easy going movie.

Of course, Miles becomes the most popular contestant on the show and then has to save his girlfriend who has been abducted by the shows hosts as he wasn’t killing or attempting to kill his opponent. He struggles and fight and we enjoy watching that, and so does his audience. Learning to use pistols for hands is no easy feat and that is the biggest feature of the character, which fits perfectly into the character, like a chalk cheese. As a nerdy game developer his life before was mostly virtual.

Does he save his ex-girlfriend? Does it matter? It was great to watch a movie and genuinely laugh. That is the biggest selling point for me. I recommend if you like violent no brainers. Daniel Radcliffe has starred in some rather surprisingly good movies over the last few years.


Rating: 5 out of 5.
From Kickboxer, featuring in the ending scene in Guns Akimbo.