The Boys: What I Know & Season 2 – TV Review

TL;DR – Just when I thought I had worked everything out, The Boys was like, you know nothing while pulling the rug out from under my feet and maintaining eye contact as I fell to the floor.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.
The Boys: What I Know. Image Credit: Amazon Studios.

What I Know Review

After an exciting and long season, we have drawn to the final episode for their sophomore season. This is a season where back in episode three, we exploded through the guts of a whale in its entire gory spectacle, and even that was not the most bonkers moment. With that in mind, in today’s review, we are going to look first at how the final episode came together. Then we will explore an overview of the season as a whole.  

So to set the scene, in last week’s episode Butcher, Baker, Candlestick Maker, we thought everything was coming to ahead … until the head’s started popping. Throughout this episode, there were several essential plotlines. The first was getting a good look at Butcher’s (Karl Urban) life and the world that formed him as to who he is today. Homelander (Antony Starr) and Stormfront (Aya Cash) manipulated Ryan (Cameron Crovetti) and turned him against his mother Becca (Shantel VanSanten). Meanwhile, after Vought captures starlight (Erin Moriarty), Hughie (Jack Quaid) goes on a rescue mission with Lamplighter (Shawn Ashmore) to save her, and it goes … mostly okay. Finally, after everything they have done up until this point, there is a congressional inquiry led by Victoria Neuman (Claudia Doumit) into Vought and what they did. Finally some progress, or not, as heads start exploding on live TV. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode and season as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.          

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Tenet – Movie Review

TL;DR – A film that blasts onto the screen with a roar of trumpets only to get bogged down in its own worldbuilding.     

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

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

Tenet. Image Credit: Warner Brothers.

Review

There are some filmmakers out there whose work has been consistently engaging that every new release gets immediately put on the must-watch list. For me, these are filmmakers like Denis Villeneuve, Ryan Coogler, Roger Deakins, Patty Jenkins, Taika Waititi, Wayne Blair, George Miller, and if I am honest with myself, at the top of that list for me is Christopher Nolan. His film Inception is still on my Top 10 Films list, and his work is always interesting even if like Interstellar the film does not capture me. Well, we live in precarious times, and I was not sure if I was going to be able to see Tenet in some form for a while, but thankfully I did get to see a screening today, and well, I think this is a film that is going to fall in the latter.

So to set the scene, we open in on an opera house in Kyiv, Ukraine, as a group of armed terrorists surge through the band and occupy the theatre. As the police arrive, one van is not what it seems because onboard is a CIA team led by our unnamed protagonist (John David Washington). This whole attack is a ruse to take out an operative whose cover has been blown, and it is our protagonist’s job to get the agent out. It all went wrong, but instead of dying to a cyanide capsule, he wakes up on a boat heading to an off-shore wind farm. It is here where he is informed that he is dead to the world, but a new opportunity has opened up. He is to explore Tenet, a mysterious phrase that is being used by arms smugglers and the like and which could be more dangerous than a missing nuclear weapon.  

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Peninsula (반도, Bando, Train to Busan Presents: Peninsula) – Movie Review

TL;DR – A film that unfortunately cannot reach the heights of its past.    

Rating: 3 out of 5.

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

Peninsula. Image Credit: Well Go.

Review

A few years ago, I stumbled across this fascinating Korean film called The Train to Busan. It was a zombie film where every character acted consistently and understandably throughout its run time. In a sea of mediocre zombie flicks, it instantly rose to the top, and since then maybe only Cargo has come close to meeting it. Thus, I was excited when I heard there was going to be a sequel to that great film. However, now I have seen it. I realise I should have modulated my expectations before going in.

So to set the scene, we open in on the day that South Korea fell. With Seoul burning in the background, Captain Jung-seok (Gang Dong-won) is racing through mountainous back roads to get his family out on the last refugee boat. While driving, they came across a stranded family with a baby and just kept on driving. They make it to the boat in time, however, as it is leaving one of the passengers turns and before they can stop it all of Jung-seok’s family is dead bar his brother-in-law Chul-min (Kim Do-yoon). Four years later, in Hong Kong living in squalor waiting for refugee status, Chul-min and Jung-seok are offered an opportunity by a local gangster to make some real money. All they have to do is go back to Inchon, in what is now just known as The Peninsular, under cover of darkness and recover a food truck with 20 Million Dollars in the back. What could go wrong?   

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The Gentlemen – Movie Review

TL;DR – A fascinating and engaging story filled with great performances and many yikes moments     

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

TL;DR – A fascinating and engaging story filled with great performances and many yikes moments     

The Gentlemen. Image Credit: STXfilms.

Review

When you sign up to watch a Guy Ritchie film, you sort of know what you are going to get yourself into as he has a very specific style. It is one that is a very flash in the pan, but with a lot more substance than similar filmmakers. On the whole, I do tend to enjoy his style of filmmaking and the stories he focuses on because at the very least they will be entertaining. Well let’s dive into his latest that I was not able to catch in cinemas given ‘waves hands around’, but I am looking forward to now.     

So to set the scene, we open with Michael ‘Mickey’ Pearson (Matthew McConaughey) walking into a pub he owns ordering a pint and a pickled egg and phoning his wife Rosalind ‘Ros’ Pearson (Michelle Dockery). Only to find out there is someone unknown in the house with her which is just the moment that someone puts a bullet in the back of his head. Jump to Raymond ‘Ray’ Smith (Charlie Hunnam) arriving at his home only to find general sleazeball and private instigator Fletcher (Hugh Grant) waiting for him with a story and a demand for 20 million dollars. A tale of a bad man who wants to get into the world of legitimacy from a world of danger and it goes about as well as you can expect.      

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Fast & Furious Franchise Review

TL;DR – It starts ridiculously serious for its subject matter before finding its groove after several films.     

The Fate of the Furious (Fast and Furious 8). Image Credit: Universal.

Well, when you are stuck at home unemployed in the middle of a pandemic, you can either head down some very unhelpful rabbit holes, or you can take the time filling in some blanks in your life. After spending too much time with the first, I decided to give the later a chance. So which movie blank should I look at correcting? This was the query set before me. There are a lot of films and genres to choose from but if there is one that most of my friends have seen, but I haven’t it would be the Fast & Furious Franchise, and well where better than to start there.

This has always been an odd franchise for me as I set well out of its target audience, hell I can’t even drive a manual, let alone parse most of the racing dialogue. Indeed, the only reason I know one of the characters is driving a 1970 Plymouth Barracuda and the other is driving a 2012 Nissan GT-R R35 Bensopra is that I looked it up in the Wiki. However, it keeps going from strength to strength, and while I had reviewed some of the later films, it was an oversight not to go back to the beginning and start anew.  To fix this, over the last few days, I have now watched all of the feature films in the franchise. So let’s dive into The Fast Saga a world of fast cars, high-speed crashes, so many different heists, and family above all.

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Movie Review – The Old Guard

TL;DR – A solid action flick, with an interesting premise, that lands from start to finish.     

Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars

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

The Old Guard. Image Credit: Netflix.

Review – I think it is no surprise that I like a good action film. Add an exciting premise, and compelling characters and I am there for the ride. Well, I have not seen a compelling action film since I went into lockdown, but I am glad to say this all changes today.

So to set the scene, we open in on Marrakesh, Morocco where a lady called Andy (Charlize Theron) walks through the market, stalked by someone on a motorcycle. Thankfully, it is was an old friend Booker (Matthias Schoenaerts), who is here with the rest of the team with a proposition. A former CIA contact Copley (Chiwetel Ejiofor) needs some help, a group of school girls have were kidnapped in Juba, South Sudan and no one else can help but her and her team. In a surgical strike, they take out the camp where the girls are kept only to find it was all a setup. Gunned down in a hail of bullets, this should be the end, but moments later they wake up and catch the would-be murders in a storm of their own. At the same moment in Afghanistan, a marine Nile (KiKi Layne) is leading a search for a bomb maker when she is stabbed only to wake up without a scratch.  

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Movie Review – Jumanji: The Next Level

TL;DR – A film that is as fun as ever, but shows that more does not always equal best.    

Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars

Post-Credit Scene – There is a mid-credit scene

Jumanji: The Next Level. Image Credit: Sony.

Review

A couple of years ago a surprise occurred, we got an unnecessary reboot that not only was a proper follow up to the last entry but also was a strong fun film in its own right. I had a wonderful time with Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, which meant I was looking forward to its sequel. Well, I missed it at the cinemas but now is the time to jump back in and discover the world of Jumanji (insert drum sounds here).

So to set the scene, a while has passed since the group had their last adventure with Spencer (Alex Wolff), Martha (Morgan Turner), Fridge (Ser’Darius Blain), and Bethany (Madison Iseman) having left town to go to separate colleges. But Christmas time is here, and the whole group is coming back home to Brantford, New Hampshire, but all is not well. For some, their lives have not matched that one time they were in the game. So when one morning Spencer does not show up for dinner, and the drums sound, the rest of the group rushes over to his house only to find the game to be broken, and there might not be works as well as the last time.

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Movie Review – The Hunt

TL;DR – A film that is brilliantly bookended but a bit of a slog to get from start to finish.    

Score – 3 out of 5 stars

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

The Hunt. Image Credit: Universal Pictures.

Review

Many films have a rocky road from start to release, however, the problems usually lie either during or in the post-production process. Rarely do films have problems once they are ready to go, well sometimes it is threats from North Korea, and sometimes it is issues well outside anyone’s controls. Today we look at such a film that whose second attempt at a release got messy thanks to the world at the moment, but it is here now so let’s take a look.

So to set the scene, we open in on a forest as eleven strangers wake up, with no idea where they are or what happened to them, nor why they are wearing gags. One of the group, a young woman (Emma Roberts) notices one of the group run off into the woods, but everyone else is fixated on the box in the middle of the field. Inside is the keys to their escape, but also the start of the carnage as guns start going off everywhere. Now unlike a lot of films, it is a bit difficult to talk about this film without hitting [SPOILERS] real quick, so there will be some plot points that are spoilers that we will be discussing in the review.

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Movie Review – The Legend of Baron To’a

TL;DR – A bonkers fun film from first till last    

Score – 4 out of 5 stars

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

The Legend of Baron To'a. Image Credit: Madman.

Review

Do you know what I needed this week? I needed a bit of fun, you know what I think a lot of people need this week, a little fun, well, have I got news for you. It has been great over the last couple of years to see Pasifika Cinema go from strength to strength and today we get to look at another entry into the great canon.

So to set the scene, we open in on the great Baron To’a (John Tui) himself as he does a tour of his home and local culdesac Kinlock Ave. He is the heart of the local community and he is most proud of his son Fritz (Lotima Pome’e). However, it cannot last and twenty years later when Fritz (Uli Latukefu) returns to help sell his house after his uncle Otto (Nathaniel Lees) stops returning his calls he finds that the sac is a very different place than what he remembered.   

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Movie Review – Guns Akimbo

TL;DR – There is a kernel of a good idea here, and there are parts of it where you can see how it could have made a really good film, just maybe not the one we got    

Score – 2.5 out of 5 stars

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

Guns Akimbo. Image Credit: Madman

Review

When you here that the premise of a film is that someone has bolted guns to Daniel Radcliffe’s hands and let him loose in the world. Well, that congers up a lot of images and expectations, indeed Daniel has been bouncing from one delightfully odd film to the next since his time in/as Harry Potter. At the very least, it is the kind of set up when you know before walking in that it is either going to be amazing or a dumpster fire but not in-between. Well trust me, I am just as surprised as you that I got it very wrong.   

So to set the scene, Miles (Daniel Radcliffe) is your usual loner who lives a less than great life as a code monkey for a soul-sucking corporation. But at night, he finally comes alive as he trolls, well other trolls. One night, however, things take a turn as he discovers ‘Skizm’, which is kind of like Twitch but with murder, indeed we are introduced to the program with Nix (Samara Weaving) annihilating another contestant because two people start and only one comes out alive. Well, Miles starts trolling the chat and eventually gets noticed by the admin Riktor (Ned Dennehy) who smashes down his door, knocks him out, and performs a little surgery. Miles wakes up with a splitting headache … oh and two guns bolted to his hands.

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