TL;DR – This is sort of the cinematic equivalent of sitting down under a doona in your PJs eating ice cream while vegging out on some TV. Perfectly pleasant and even enjoyable in places, but with not really any substance with it.
Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars
Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene
Well, I am going to get something out of the way right from the start, I have
not watched a single episode of Downton
Abbey before today. I, of course, know what it is and also thanks to the
internet and the enormous fan following it has, I know most of the main plot
points but it never interested me to hunt down the DVDs. I say this so if you
are a fan of the show you can put my critiques in context, however, I am mostly
writing this for those like me who have never seen it before and may get
brought along for what is billed as the cinematic event of the year.
So to set the scene, it has been two years since the series finished off and
life at Downton is moving on at its usual pace, but no one could be prepared
for the letter that is making its way through the Royal Mail system all the way
from London. For you see King George V (Simon Jones) and Queen Mary (Geraldine
James) will be spending the night at Downton as part of their Yorkshire tour.
Suddenly everything is thrown into chaos as Robert Crawley (Hugh Bonneville) and
Cora Crawley (Elizabeth McGovern) rush to get the house ready, but there are
more problems on the horizon and I am not just talking about the boiler kicking
TL;DR – A story about finding your voice through rap in the slums of Mumbai hits just about every beat perfectly.
Score – 4 out of 5 stars
Post-Credit Scene – There is a scene over the first part of the credits
It has been a while since I have watched a movie about becoming a music
superstar that had any kind of weight and substance behind it. Usually, they are content just to ride on the
fact that people know the music very well, and as long as you drop those
classic songs every now and again people will lap it up. Today we get to look
at a film that doesn’t just rest on its laurels and call it a day, it instead
focuses deeply on what it is to come from nothing and try to make it in a very
So to set the scene, we open in Mumbai, India, specifically the Dharavi slums
on the outskirts of the city, and we start immediately in a moment of tension
when Aftab (Vijay Raaz) brings home a second younger wife, much to the annoyance of both Murad (Ranveer Singh) and his
mother Razia (Amruta Subhash). Murad is working hard at school, working hard on
keeping his relationship with Safeena (Alia Bhatt) on the quiet, but he has a
real passion for rap. In his quiet time, he
watches videos on YouTube and works on his own lyrics. However, he doesn’t have
the confidence to take it to the next level, which is when MC Sher (Siddhant
Chaturvedi) gives him the push he needs.
TL;DR – This is a film of dissonant halves, both funny, yet confronting, sad but also hopeful, engaging but also infuriating
Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars
Post-Credit Scene – There is a mid-credit scene but it does not offer any answers
Today I get to review a film thanks to the Brisbane International Film Festival that I would not have normally been able to see. I have been trying to increase the films that I have seen from Asia, and while this has included films from Hong Kong and China, today is my first dive into Taiwanese filmmaking with Huang Hsin-yao’s odd The Great Budda+. This is an interesting film but also a frustrating one at times, so to properly review it we will first give a general overview before we enter into spoiler territory as we dissect its ending, and what an ending it is.
TL;DR – Class does what the last season of Doctor Who couldn’t, it got me engaged with this franchise again, with interesting mature stories that feel like they have some weight to them.
Score – 4/5 Stars
As I mentioned in my Top 30 TV Shows Countdown, some way through season 9 I fell out of interest with Doctor Who, I can’t put my finger on any one thing, I just lost track of the episodes and found I did not really care to chase them down and catch them up. So when this new Doctor Who spin-off series hit my feed, I almost passed it up, because as at this point why bother. Well, I’m glad I didn’t, because Class is the most engaging entry into the Doctor Who universe that I have seen in a while.