The Mandalorian: Chapter 14 (The Tragedy) – TV Review

TL;DR – An episode that is mostly one long action scene, and it just works

Rating: 4 out of 5.
The Mandalorian: Chapter 14 (The Tragedy). Image Credit: Disney+.

The Mandalorian: The Tragedy Review

As we have seen in shows recently, it isn’t easy to have long action scenes and pull them off. There is so much that goes into a critical action scene, and it is hard to do that successfully at a film level, let alone with the limited time you get to shoot with TV. Well, today’s episode showed that you could pull it off, with some creativity.

So to set the scene, in last week’s Chapter 13 we learned that The Child or Baby Yoda is called Grogu, but that to get him trained they need to go to the old Jedi Temple on Tython. Well, one hop, skip, and hyperspace jump later they arrive, however, it is soon apparent that they are not alone. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead. 

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TV Review – Star Trek Discovery: The Sanctuary

TL;DR – An episode that balances the personal with the large scale story and that was a delight to see.  

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.
Star Trek Discovery: The Sanctuary. Image Credit: CBS Studios.

The Sanctuary Review –

We are starting to get to the pointy end of the season for Star Trek Discovery, and many of the story beats that have been thrown out there have begun to come home to roost. Today we get to see three stories based around different members of the crew as well as our first primary interaction with the series apparent big bad.  

So to set the scene, in last week’s episode, we got to see the fruits of Spock’s (Leonard Nimoy / Ethan Peck) labour with the Unification of the Romulan and Vulcan people. But more than that, it was a turning point for Michael (Sonequa Martin-Green) in where she wanted to find her home. This week, things get turned on their head, when Book (David Ajala) receives a message from his home pulling the crew, Discovery, and The Federation into a direct confrontation with the Emerald Chain. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead. 

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Ever After: A Cinderella Story is the best Cinderella (1998) – Exploring the Past

TL;DR – A joy to watch from start to finish. 

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene

Ever After: A Cinderella Story. Image Credit: 20th Century Studios.

Ever After Review

There are a lot of films that landing when you were growing up, that no matter what, will always charm and excite. For a child of the 1990s, it is those films like 10 Things I Hate About You that hit you in your core no matter how many times you have watched them. Well, today we get to look at one of those films that does it better than many others, which can take you back in time with a single first trumpet swell.

So to set the scene, we open in the 19th century, when the Grande Dame (Jeanne Moreau) invited The Brother’s Grim to her bedside. She loves their collection of folk tales … well all that is bar one, The Little Cinder Girl. Noticing a painting on the wall, one of the brothers asks about its providence, which lets the Grande Dame tell the story of her great-great-grandmother Danielle de Barbarac (Drew Barrymore). As a young girl Danielle (Anna Maguire) lived in a grand manor house her father Auguste (Jeroen Krabbé). One day in his travels he brings home a new wife the Baroness Rodmilla de Ghent (Anjelica Huston) and her two daughters. It is another happy time, until when leaving on a trip to Avignon, Auguste has a heart attack at the gates of the property, leaving Danielle very much alone. 

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Let Him Go (Let Him Go: Fight For Family) – Movie Review

TL;DR –  A film that explores tension at every moment that leaves you sitting on the edge of your seat as it all falls apart.   

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene

Warning – Contains scenes of abuse

Let Him Go (Let Him Go: Fight For Family). Image Credit: Universal Pictures.

Let Him Go Review

It has been a while since a film has had me sat on the edge of my seat as the tension overwhelmed me. Well, today, we look at just such a movie that I was honestly struggling to find the right genre to categorise it. It is sort of a western but not, it is sort of a noir film but not, a detective hunt but not. But whatever it is, it was engaging from start to finish.

So to set the scene, we open in on a family in a full happy mode as they get ready for the day.  James Blackledge (Ryan Bruce) is out working breaking in a horse as his father George (Kevin Costner) watches on. Back in the homestead, his mother Margaret (Diane Lane) is making breakfast while his wife Lorna (Kayli Carter) is trying to corral their new baby. As James takes out the horse for a ride, everyone is working together, that is until the horse comes back without its rider. Three years later, Lorna is re-marring Donnie Weboy (Will Brittain), and she and her little one Jimmy (Bram Hornung/ Otto Hornung) go to move in with him. Much to the consternation of Margret and George, that is only elevated when one day Lorna and Donnie skip town without telling and take Jimmy along with them.

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The American Boys – Movie Review

TL;DR – In this collection of short films, we get a snapshot of life, of stories untold, but nothing that really stands out.     

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene

The American Boys. Image Credit: NQV Media.

The American Boys Review

One of the strengths of short films is their ability to give a concise snapshot into a world. You pick only a couple of characters and dive into their world and how it is shaped. While usually, you would release these films separately, you can also group them around a theme which is what the film we are looking at today did.   

The American Boys is a collection of six short films including These Things Take Time, Legend of Scotty Watts, Two Fish, You Can Play, I Think I’m Gay & Billy’s Blowjobs. All of these films look at different types of relationships, and as some of the titles would suggest, they look at the many different stages of gay relationships. Now because the film has grouped them as a whole, that is how we will look at them in this review.

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Civilization VI: New Frontier Pass – Babylon Pack – Map-It

TL;DR – Every single feature of Civilization VI (at time of posting) in one Map, this time featuring the new addition Babylon.

Babylon Maps –

Today we got the latest update to Civilization VI with the newest addition to the New Frontier Pass. The next pit stop is back into the Cradle of Civilization with Babylon. So once again, we are going to dive back into the world of Cartography plus Video Games. If you want more detailed information on anything that appears on the Map, you can find it at our Civilization VI Cartographic Educational Database.

 Now as always, a couple of notes before we start, first the Civilization boundaries on the Map are based more on clarity than anything else, so in most cases, they conform to their modern counterparts. We have also worked using the commonly implemented political borders, not necessarily what nations claim, and this means making some judgement calls which you will see below. Also, while all attempts have been made to make sure that everything is accurately placed, putting this together meant working from multiple different sources, and map projections. As such, no matter how much you try, there might be some slight discrepancies here and there.
We will be mostly going over the new additions and changes to the Map in this update, if you want to learn more about some of the location choices that we made you can find more detail in our First Full Civilization Big Map and out Gathering Storm Update Map.  

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The Mandalorian: Chapter 12 (The Siege) – TV Review

TL;DR – We return to the familiar but also the safe

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.
The Mandalorian: Chapter 12 (The Siege). Image Credit: Disney+

The Mandalorian: The Siege Review

One of the significant issues I had with the first season of The Mandalorian was several episodes just felt like filler and not good filler at that. I had a feeling that we would see this return in the second season, but so far that has not been the case. However, we have been edging closer and closer to this territory, and this week is no exception.

So to set the scene, in last week’s The Heiress, the Razor Crest had seen some better times, and that was after they had tried to repair it. There is no way that Mando (Pedro Pascal) and The Child could make it to Corvus in one piece, so they decide to visit some old friends. Landing in Nevarro, they have greeted Cara Dune (Gina Carano) and Greef Karga (Carl Weathers), who are there to help, but also could use some help in return. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead. 

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TV Review – Star Trek Discovery: Scavengers

TL;DR – An episode where roosters come home to roost.  

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.
Star Trek Discovery: Scavengers. Image Credit: CBS Studios.

Scavengers Review –

There have been a lot of unanswered questions this season that has been left dangling. The first is of course, what or who caused The Burn that devastated the galaxy. Was it a natural phenomenon, was it an accident, or was it on purpose? The second, is what was Michael (Sonequa Martin-Green) doing during her yearlong sojourn in the future? Today we get answers on one of those fronts, but also some consequences.  

So to set the scene, in last week’s Die Trying we finally found what was left of The Federation and Starfleet. It had been reduced to about 30 members and is on reactive rather than proactive footing. Well, The Discovery had to prove itself, but it was clear the crew and the ship would be an asset for The Federation, but it was also apparent when it took only one shot to take it down in People of Earth that the ship was woefully out of date. Good thing then that the Discovery has just had a major upgrade, one that went “do you need your nacelles attached to the ship”? This is just the moment that an unannounced cat arrives on the scene. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead. 

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The Lego Star Wars Holiday Special – Movie Review

TL;DR – There was so much wasted potential here that you actually start to feel sorry for the film    

Rating: 1.5 out of 5.

Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene

The Lego Star Wars Holiday Special. Image Credit: Disney+

The Lego Star Wars Holiday Special Review

Well, few things in pop culture have such infamy as the original Star Wars Holiday Special. Sure you may have been the first time we got a look at Boba Fett, but well you don’t get to be a gag in Weird Al’s seminal White & Nerdy for nothing. Well, today we look at Lucasarts giving a second crack at the idea, but this time Lego.

So to set the scene, at the end of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, The New Order was defeated, so Rey (Helen Sadler) and Fynn (Omar Miller) decided to travel to visit Chewbacca and his family on Kashyyyk to celebrate Life Day. But for Rey, this is a big struggle because she is struggling to train Fynn in the ways of the Jedi and takes a trip to the past to get some inspiration.

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The Mandalorian: Chapter 11 (The Heiress) – TV Review

TL;DR – A visual spectacle with some fun moments but not much more

Rating: 4 out of 5.
The Mandalorian: Chapter 11 (The Heiress). image Credit: Disney+.

The Mandalorian: The Heiress Review

One of the bonuses of using a streaming service for your delivery platform is that you are not constrained to 1-hour time-slot (well 45min with ads) of broadcast TV. The Mandalorian has already used this to bump up the story and action in the first episode The Marshall. This week we get to see it reverse with a much shorter but more concise episode.

So to set the scene, in last week’s episode The Passenger things didn’t quite go to plan, and that is saying something, which led to the Razor Crest being a leaky sieve with nothing but the cockpit secure from the ravages of space. However, janky it may be, but at the start of this week’s episode we finally make it to Trask an ocean moon orbiting the gas giant Kol Iben. After some … interesting moments landing (that did give me some Firefly flashbacks) they arrive mostly in one piece hoping to find the Mandalorians left on the planet. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead. 

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