TL;DR – While this is not charting any new ground narratively, the solid work from the cast makes it an enjoyable romp through the jungle.
Rating: 3.5 out of 5.
Post-Credit Scene – There is a mid-credit scene
Disclosure – I paid to see this film
The Lost City Review –
There is a group of films that fit within the ‘romantic-comedy’ genre that I think you may have watched before. This is where two people not in a couple are dropped into a life-or-death situation and must learn how to get along with each other or more by the time the film has finished. They can be good like Romancing the Stone and My Fellow Americans, and well, they can be not so good. Today, we are looking at a film that hits all the main points of this world and manages to shine due to a cast committed to the chaos.
So to set the scene, Loretta Sage (Sandra Bullock) is a prevalent romance author. However, she has been stuck with writer’s block since her archaeologist husband passed away. She put together a new book for her agent Beth Hatten (Da’Vine Joy Randolph), but her heart was not in it, and even less so in the book tour that she had to go on to promote it. Sensing this, Beth asks the popular model Alan Caprison (Channing Tatum), who has been the cover model for all of Loretta’s books, to come along to boost attendance at the events. That also goes poorly, but as Lorretta is leaving, she is kidnapped by reclusive billionaire Abigail Fairfax (Daniel Radcliffe). For you see, as an undergrad, Loretta was an expert in a small Indigenous people’s group in the Atlantic and incorporated that work into her novel. Abigail is after a lost treasure from those people, and Loretta might be the only one who can help him.
TL;DR – A film that works through the sheer charisma of its cast but left me feeling hollow when I left.
Rating: 3 out of 5.
Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene
Disclosure – I paid to see this film
Free Guy Review –
I had wanted to catch Free Guy for a couple of weeks now, but schedules never lined up, well that was until today when I managed to slip in just in time for the start of the film. I was intrigued because I like Ryan Reynolds as an actor, and I enjoy the video game/streaming intersection that the game is delving into. However, as I walked away from the cinemas there felt like a lot of opportunities were not taken.
So to set the scene, every day, Guy (Ryan Reynolds) wakes up, wishes his goldfish a good morning, gets a coffee, and goes to work at the bank, where he gets robbed multiple times a day. Because Guy is an NPC (non-player character) in the video game Free City. However, one day he notices one of the player characters in the game is humming a song that he loves, and it breaks him from his gameplay loop. It is here where he discovers a whole new world is just under his fingertips … or glasses.
TL;DR – A great follow-up, but it does struggle to find its feet in places.
Score – 4 out of 5 stars
So the original Kingman: The Secret Service was one of the first films we reviewed back in 2015 when we started (and you can read it HERE). Overall we really liked the film, it had great action, a fantastic cast, a magnetic lead villain, and it was a star-making turn for lead Taron Egerton. Overall the movie worked bar one ill-placed ‘joke’ at the end which was out of place, tacky, unnecessary, and literately brings the whole movie to a stop to get it out, but that didn’t stop Kingman from getting on our Top Films of 2015 list (see HERE). So I was wondering if they could make the follow-up as good as the first film and I think they may have just pulled it off.
TL;DR – Logan Lucky is equal measures fascinating and boring, with a heavy dose of Sothern Americana on top.
Score – 2.5 out of 5 stars
I love heist films, indeed there are so many facets of them that I find really fascinating. I love the setup, the betrayals, oh and you better believe a love a good double and triple crosses, I love the prep work, the crime, the hustle and the con, and that point where everything inevitably goes wrong. I think it is safe to say that everyone has seen a heist film at some point, from both Ocean’s, Die Hard, The Thomas Crown Affair, if you haven’t the good folks over at CineFix have you covered. So I was really intrigued going in to see Logan Lucky, especially with a name like Steven Soderbergh at the helm, who has a long history of fantastic films in this genre. However as I walked out of the cinema, I was left feeling perplexed, confused and honestly, more than a little underwhelmed.
TL;DR – It takes the very best of Batman, adds in some great animation and adds an interesting villain, I highly recommend it
Score – 4 out of 5 stars
“I’m Batman”, it is a phrase so common I bet you just said it in your head Christian Bale style or indeed Will Arnett style. Batman is one of those unambiguous pop-culture references and touchstones that everyone knows about even if they have never read a comic or seen a movie. So if you are a marketing executive you are loving this exposure, however, the Batman from the Lego films is a parody and an almost one-note parody at that. This is a problem because we have seen over and over again when you take the zany side character and give them their own film it often doesn’t work, see the last Pirates of the Caribbean. So with today’s review, we are going to take a moment to look at what lead to the creation of this film, then look at the animation, story and characters, and see if it holds up.
TL;DR – Hail Caesar is an interesting film, with a lot going on, but that is much of the problem, its scattershot nature means the film lacks real substance, but it still has a lot of spectacle to make up for it.
Score – 3 out of 5 stars
This is an interesting film, but it is also a very flawed film and that makes it quite difficult to review, or at least score. There are some really interesting ideas at play here, and there are also some amazingly wonderful set pieces throughout which are a joy to watch. However, it is trying to do so much, that it just can’t do any of the ideas justice, so it just feels like a scattershot of a film, which is a bit a disappointment.
TL;DR – A beautiful film in a certain respect, filled with Tarantino’s trademark gore but not a whole lot of anything else
Score – 2 out of 5 stars
So two of the three films I have seen this year have been set in the snowy reaches of frontier America, both contain people battling against the elements and a lot of blood, violence and unsettling themes. However, while I walked out of The Revenant feeling that I had witnessed something truly remarkable, when I walked out of The Hateful Eight I felt, “well, yer, that was a thing”.