Movie Review – A Life of Speed: The Juan Manuel Fangio Story (Fangio: El hombre que domaba las máquinas)

TL;DR – An exploration of a pioneer of racing    

Score – 4 out of 5 stars

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

A Life of Speed: The Juan Manuel Fangio Story (Fangio: El hombre que domaba las máquinas). Image Credit: Netflix.

Review

There are whole worlds out there that I had no idea existed or no idea of the complexities involved. One of those worlds is racing and specifically the F1. I know it exists, the basic rules, even many of the races and racers. However, I know very little about its history or the people that shaped. Well, today I take steps to fix that with a look at the life of Juan Manuel Fangio.

So to set the scene, we open in on Balcarce, Argentina as a voice-over lets us know how specialised being a top F1 racer is. It is here where we get a sense of just who this Juan Manuel Fangio is and the power his legacy has over the sport and racing in general. We start back in 1941 at the height of the WW2 where tiers were hard to come by, but he scraped it together and in 1947 was sent to Europe in Galliate, Italy which became his European base as he raced around the world.    

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TV Review – Altered Carbon – Season 2

TL;DR – It continues the story gallantly, but the second outing is more restrained and does not fix the problems of the first season.  

Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars

Altered Carbon – Season 2. Image Credit: Netflix.

Review

A couple of years ago, there was this odd TV series on Netflix that I described as “if Westworld and Blade Runner had a baby with Ghost in the Shell as the midwife.” It was odd, it was out there, and even though it had some limitations it kept powering through. Well, I have finally caught up with the second season and I have to say it is more of the say, which is both good and bad.

So to set the scene, we open in a dive bar on some desolate system out in the deep black. On the stage is a singer (Jihae) singing a haunting song when a synth that had just needle cast in-system. Trepp (Simone Missick) is a bounty hunter, and a good one at that, and she is looking for one Takeshi “Tak” Kovacs. But in what sleeve is he in? Possibly only the malfunctioning AI Poe (Chris Conner) behind the bar knows? Well, Trepp buts a bullet in his back and brings him to her employer Horace Axley (Michael Shanks). All Tak has to do is protect Axley and he gets to keep this new body (Anthony Mackie). But more importantly, he knows where he can find Quellcrist “Quell” Falconer (Renée Elise Goldsberry), the person he has been searching for all these years. It’s a good bargain, right up until the moment he needle casts in and finds Axley dead on the ground, and all of Harlan’s World is out for his blood. Now we will be looking at the season as a whole, so there may be some [SPOILERS] ahead.

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Movie Review – Yeh Ballet

TL;DR – a fun film about finding your place in the world through a talent you never knew you had   

Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars

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

Yeh Ballet. Image Credit: Netflix.

Review

We continue our look at Indian cinema this week with an interesting film that has recently arrived on Netflix. It is a film that charts the highs and lows of two kids finding a new outcome for their lives. Also, it is kind of cool that it is all based on a true story.  

So to set the scene, we open in on the Mumbai slums as Asif (Achintya Bose) competes in a festival of people stacking on top of each other to get the prize hanging above. Elsewhere Nishu (Manish Chauhan) has made it onto the TV and while his raw talent is impressive, his lack of skill lets him down. Both of the boys have a trajectory of where their lives are headed and neither of them is happy with where it is going. All of this changes when a local talent scout and dance studio owner (Jim Sarbh) brings over the cantankerous Saul Aaron (Julian Sands) to coach his students in ballet and he sees something brilliant in the two boys from the slums.       

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TV Review – Lost in Space: Season 2

TL;DR – A really great continuation of the first season showing the strengths of this new interpretation at every turn

Score – 4 out of 5 stars

Lost in Space: Season 2. Image Credit: Netflix

Review

We are currently living through a second Golden Age for Science Fiction on TV and one of the first really cool examples of that was a new Lost in Space landing on our screens a couple of years ago. It was energetic, delightful, but also had some thematic weight behind it. Well, Season Two is upon us, so it’s time to see how well it did.    

So to set the scene, at the end of Season One, the family Robinson, that is Maureen (Molly Parker), John (Toby Stephens), Will (Maxwell Jenkins), Judy (Taylor Russell), and Penny (Mina Sundwall) along with Don West (Ignacio Serricchio) and Dr Smith (Parker Posey) got launched through a warp portal by Robot (Brian Steele) to protect them. This leads them to land on a planet that is habitable, bar all the methane in the atmosphere. The warp drained most of the Jupiter 2’s power meaning they can breathe and stay warm but not a whole lot else. All of this changes when Maureen notices that there is a patch of lightning in the distance that comes so regularly that you can schedule it, and maybe a lighting jolt is just what the Jupiter 2 needs. Now as we go on there will be some [SPOILERS] as we will be looking at the season as a whole, so just be warned if you have not seen it yet.     

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TV Review – The Witcher: Season 1

TL;DR – Fun, brooding, entertaining

Score – 4 out of 5 stars

The Witcher. Image Credit: Netflix.

Review


As someone who generally enjoys fantasy, it is surprising that it took me this long to really get into The Witcher franchise. I had tried in the past with the video games, but by the time I was helping a miss-carried baby to get back into the grave it all got a bit too weird without the context, to add to this, the books seemed this large mountain of work that I didn’t know where to start with. Well with the new series starting I thought now was as good as time as any to dive into the world of the brooding Geralt of Rivia (Henry Cavill).  

So to set the scene, in a world of magic and monsters lives many feuding kingdoms and power structures in the land known as The Continent. We open in the kingdom of Cintra, ruled by its Queen Calanthe (Jodhi May). All is well until the day that the evil Nilfgaard set their sights on them burning their capital to the ground and killing all they find. Calanthe in her last act sends her granddaughter Cirilla “Ciri”(Freya Allan) away with one mission, to survive and find Geralt. Geralt himself is off in another kingdom stuck in a war between a powerful mage Stregobor (Lars Mikkelsen) and a bandit/princess Renfri (Emma Appleton). Meanwhile, a girl with a deformed back works caring for the pigs of her father. But Yennefer of Vengerberg’s (Anya Chalotra) life is forever changed when the powerful sorceress Tissaia de Vries (MyAnna Buring) arrives and buys her for a couple of coins. Now we will be looking at the season as a whole, so there may be some [SPOILERS] ahead.

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TV Review – Sex Education: Season 2

TL;DR – This is a show that deals with sex and sexuality in a very frank and refreshing way which you will find endlessly engaging or very off-putting

Score – 4 out of 5 stars

Sex Education: Season 2. Image Credit: Netflix.

Review

There are some shows that are irreverent for no reason other than the fact that cheap humour gets looks, so pitching your show at the lowest common denominator is a good business model. The crassness has no reason to be there bar being a punchline for people to awkwardly laugh about. However, once in a while you get a show that goes through all the different sex jokes you can have, and indeed it starts with a montage about someone discovering masturbation, however, not once is it about playing it low but instead, it finds a voice for those who don’t quite know how to express each other.

So to set the scene, at the end of last season everything at Moordale Secondary School was in a state of flux with Adam (Connor Swindells) being sent away to military school, Maeve (Emma Mackey) has been expelled, and while Otis (Asa Butterfield) final finds someone to love him back with Ola (Patricia Allison) but it comes at the expense of his one true love Maeve. In the time since Otis has discovered how to achieve release, Maeve has started work in a local mall to get by, Eric (Ncuti Gatwa) has developed a crush on the new kid Rahim (Sami Outalbali), and Otis’ mum Jean (Gillian Anderson) is still seeing Ola’s father Jakob (Mikael Persbrandt) even though they had told their kids that they had broken up. Which is the perfect storm for a chlamydia outbreak to cause the school to fall into a state of chaos. Now we will be looking at the season as a whole, so there may be some [SPOILERS] ahead.

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Movie Review – All the Freckles in the World (Todas las Pecas del Mundo)

TL;DR – If this was just a paint by numbers film it would be okay, but it does not even hit that level.    

Score – 1.5 out of 5 stars

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

All the Freckles in the World (Todas las Pecas del Mundo). Image Credit: Netflix.

Review

When you get to watch films from across the world you get to find some real gems that explore life in weird and wonderful ways. However, there are some things that can translate across cultures, like the coming of age story. Today we look at a version of that from Mexico full of football, unrequited love, and a school that really should have a governmental audit.

So to set the scene, it is 1994 in Mexico City and World Cup fever is everywhere. However, for José Miguel Mota Palermo (Hanssel Casillas) things are going from worse to worse. He has to move to a new school and on the first day of class was not what you would call a success. His father might be famous at his new school, but that does not make is life any better. But there is one ray of hope, a girl called Cristina (Loreto Peralta), one problem, she is dating Kenji (Luis de La Rosa), but then that is not going to stop José Miguel. All he has to do is learn how to play football, how hard could that be.     

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