Groundhog Day (1993)

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I know this movie is pretty old now but I watched it for the first time last weekend as I was told it was a ‘feel good film’ and you can’t go wrong with a ‘feel good film’ can you?

So the story to this movie is that self-centered weatherman Phil (Bill Murray) is fated to live the same day over and over again.  That day is, Groundhog Day.  Like yourselves and probably the rest of the audience I had no idea what Groundhog Day was but luckily for us it’s explained pretty early on in the movie and is basically the day when a little groundhog (google them, they’re cute) predicts how soon winter is going to arrive and stay for.   It’s just as silly as it sounds I’ll be honest, Phil starts off confused as you would be and thinks the town is playing tricks on him and then he starts to take advantage of his situation.  He uses a lot of his time trying to seduce his producer Rita (Andie MacDowell) but things don’t go as well as he hopes…

The acting in this movie is typical 90’s rom-com really, I can’t really say Bill’s performance was amazing but it was watchable… After seeing his later movie’s it’s difficult to picture him as a romantic lead though so watch this with an open mind… It’s a pretty cheesy film but I have seen worse movies and I do understand that the film is trying to get a message across in that you’re one choice or action away from a completely different life. Andie MacDowell was pretty wooden in this for me, I think they could have cast this far better, any other girls from St Elmo’s Fire would have done a better job in my opinion…

This is a film that has an interesting concept and I did enjoy watching it however, if they do remake this film (let’s face it one day, they will….) it needs to be cast better.  I did like how after failed attempts at dating Rita, Phil does see that there’s more to life but I think I’d have found it more interesting personally if this movie had a different outcome in the end.

Overall it’s worth a watch, if you want something with a bit of meaning to it but not have to be completely switched on while watching it.

Perfect Popcorn Score – I’m giving this a 6.5, the story is interesting and it’s funny in some parts but Andie MacDowell isn’t great as a lead love interest… 6.5/10

 

Cruel Intentions (1999)

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So this movie has been remade and the plot has been used in many films, to be honest this film itself is a modern take on the movie Dangerous Liaisons. 

The plot is that two step siblings Kathryn (Sarah Michelle Gellar) and Sebastian (Ryan Phillipe) have a bet, if he can charm his way into bed with virgin Annette (Reese Witherspoon) he gets to sleep with his sister.  If he looses the bet she gets his precious car.

It’s a very well done film, you can see that the actors actually wanted it to be a hit and worked very hard to make it one.  I’ve not seen Dangerous Liaisons  myself so I can’t make a comparison between the two films.  The characters and their lives do make it seem like your average American high-school movie but the way it’s written and how the plot works make it one that stands out.  Kathryn is so two-faced, she’s obsessed with everyone thinking she’s perfect and an angel so that she can get away with being the complete opposite.  Take note of this please, for future reference, it’s not always the kids in the lower classes that may not be as pretty that manipulate and bully others, sometimes it’s the ones up the teachers asses that they’d never suspect (trust me).

You start out hating Sebastian, only to almost like the guy later in the film.  Not because he’s ‘found himself’ but because he has the balls to tell it how it is. Annette is pretty sassy for the girl he preys on and I like that, she’s not a doormat and tells him exactly what she thinks of him from the off.

The acting is spot on, especially Gellar she’s brilliant as the bitchy Kathryn and I’m surprised she doesn’t get more roles like this actually. The whole cast work really well with each other and they’ve all been in other films or hung out since.

There’s no special effects to mention with it just being a teen movie but the soundtrack is great.  That end scene where one of my personal favorites, The Verve – Bittersweet Symphony plays is perfect, that song fits the ending so well.

Overall, this movie deserves a watch and is better than most modern day rom-coms it’s clever and well acted.     I’ve seen interviews and the people behind this movie really wanted it made and you can see that.

Perfect Popcorn Score –I’m giving it a strong seven, good plot, good acting and great soundtrack – 7/10.

 

Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse (2015)

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OK so, normally I avoid these kinds of films because I think it’s going to be a disaster like the Epic Movie’ franchise however, I decided to give this movie a go as it was showing on Sky and I just needed something to watch…

So the premise of the film is pretty simple, there’s a zombie apocalypse in a small American town and three guys who happen to also be scouts try and survive and save their friends.  It also touches on peer pressure and the whole, ‘we need to be popular to get laid’ typical teen movie story-line.

There’s not any really well known actors in this film, I have seen a couple of people in small roles in other films but that’s about it so I was quite surprised too laugh as much as I did.  The acting is pretty decent, it’s your typical American teen comedy and I’ll be honest the plot shouldn’t work as well as it does.  Tye SheridanLogan Miller and Joey Morgan are the three scouts and they’re not quite as good as the Superbad trio but they’re not bad and like I said, I did laugh quite a lot at this film.

The zombie effects aren’t as awful as a lot of films out there but could have been better, it’s probably on par with those used in Pride, Prejudice and Zombies to give you an idea.  I don’t usually like it when they have animal zombies in films because it doesn’t look realistic and to be fair, it didn’t in this movie but it did add to the comedy so I’ll let it slide because I think this film is just one big piss-take of the zombie film genre.

From the beginning of film there’s plenty of laughs and there’s one scene in particular that really just got me but I won’t ruin it for you and let you work out which scene that is… If you’re a fan of the horror comedies like Tucker and Dale then this movie is right up your street or if you just want something funny and easy to watch then I’d recommend giving this a try.  It’s not something you take seriously and it’s not up to the standard of Zombieland I’ll be honest but it’s clearly not got the same budget and still ends up being a decent movie.

Perfect Popcorn Score – I’m giving this movie a six, it’s got decent acting, easy to follow plot and some great laughs…  – 6/10.

 

 

Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017)

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So I saw this last night on the big screen (in 2D) as although it says 7/7/2017, my local cinema showed it yesterday (the rebels).

So I’ll explain a little about the story without any spoilers because it’s completely different too the previous two Spider-Man films we’ve seen.  Tom Holland plays Spider-Man himself and after seeing him in the last Captain America film (which was basically an Avengers film…) I was quite looking forward too this movie.

It’s set after the events of Civil War, fifteen year-old Peter Parker is having trouble adjusting back into his ‘normal’ life after being called to assist Iron Man on his last mission.   He’s itching to use his powers to help his fellow Avengers but is constantly being told to keep it all low-key and that he’s just a kid. This obviously makes him want to prove himself all the more so when he sees that a ‘gang’ of criminals are using and selling hi-tech weapons made from the left overs spoils of the Avengers battles he sets out to put an end to it. There’s quite a lot of humor in this film as with all Avengers movies which is great.

The cast is pretty good, Tom Holland plays the iconic superhero really well although I can’t help but think he’s just a little young… Michael Keaton is a fantastic villain as always. Laura Harrier plays LizPeter’s love interest in this movie which surprised me as due to the promotional material and interviews for this film I expected Zendaya to play Parker’s love interest.

With all Marvel movies now you know there’s a massive budget they’re given to play with so all the effects are flawless and even the various Spider-Man suits are probably the best we’ve ever seen. However, I was a little disappointed they all (bar one) came from Tony Stark, there’s just something I liked about Spider-Man making them himself.

Overall it’s a good movie however, I personally think (believe me I’ve though long and hard about this…) I preferred the 2002 Tobey Maguire movie because it was just a lot more true to the comics.  I also have an issue with this Spider-Man not being able to actually shoot web, it’s all made chemically and it just ruins it slightly.  I know a lot of people will rave over this film and I’m not slating it because it’s a well made movie but I think it was made to ‘fill a hole’ rather than because the writers and director actually wanted to make the film.  Marvel need to be careful I mean they didn’t reboot the Hulk movies, more so due to rights but we’d already had two decent films anyway.  I just liked the older, college graduate, photographer Peter Parker than the younger science nerd but I can appreciate both…

Perfect Popcorn Score – I’m giving it an eight, there’s some great laughs and a decent story line but there’s also so much missing… 8/10 

 

 

Charlie’s Angels [Reboot]

I’ll admit, this show was before my time so I never really watched it, even the re-runs as it just looked dated and cheesy.  However, the show does have a relatively good rating on IMDb and some decent reviews, plus it ran for five series so it couldn’t have been that bad right?

Then came the awful 2000 movie staring Cameron DiazDrew Barrymore and Lucy Lui. The movie had a terrible plot and considering the actresses selected, the acting was quite poor. Yet despite this there was actually a sequel which was even worse in 2003. 

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I bet none of you knew they also tried to reboot the series in 2011. It only lasted the one series (it was that good) and starred, Minka KellyRachael Taylor and Annie Ilonzeh, I’ve not bothered to watch it and probably never will…

So now Hollywood is trying yet again to reboot this franchise, no cast has been announced however, Elizabeth Banks is set to direct the film.  I’m personally not a massive fan of her previous director/producer films such as Pitch Perfect but they were quite successful box-office wise. The plot has been advised though ‘When Soh Bae turns up applying to be Charlie’s 4th Angel, she is thrown into the deep end immediately, as the other angels are kidnapped by the mysterious Ronny Petankan. With only her nerdy sidekick Nathan Woodhall to help, it is up to Soh to save the angels and save the world before breakfast!’

It sounds as though the film will be aimed at the younger audience judging by the plot and with Banks’ style of film it will more likely be a comedy than a series action flick which is a shame in my opinion.  I mean after Wonder Woman it would be interesting to a Charlie’s Angels film in that same style with us not having seen that before.  I know the series was a comedy but you can have action and comedy without going overboard, like all the jokes we have in Marvel films.

I don’t have anything against Rebel Wilson as a person, she seems lovely however, if she is cast in this movie, I won’t be watching it.  Personally I’d like to see actresses who haven’t yet quite made their mark in film compared with others so…

 

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Blake Lively 

Yes, I’ve warned you before, I’m a fan of Blake Lively’s and I personally think she could do this role justice.  She was really good in both Age of Adaline and The Shallows, proving she’s gotten more range in her acting since her Gossip Girl days.

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Jessica Stroup

Jessica started out in the reboot of 90210 and was probably the best actress in the show.  She’s since then done more serious roles in The Following and Iron Fist, I’m sure she would fit the role of an angel perfectly.

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Elodie Young

You may recognize this French actress in Netflix’s Daredevil as Elektra. Proving she can play a female superhero brilliantly and bagging herself a role in The Defenders I’m sure she can fill the boots of an angel.

The plot did mention a fourth angel and her nerdy sidekick I think this is where the comedy will come from so I think these pair would fit in great…

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Arielle Kebbel 

She’s been in so many TV shows I’ve lost count, from comedy to drama Arielle just needs a proper big break to give her a boost onto the big screen and have her stay there.

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Matthew Lewis 

He’s little Neville Longbottom but he was very good in Me, Before you and added some comedy into the film.  Let’s face it he’s got the nerdy, comedy look down but with added ‘British charm’ that might make this role more interesting.

Well there’s my opinions on the cast, it will be a while before anymore news is announced so let’s see what Elizabeth Banks comes up with…

The Ugly Truth (2009)

theuglytruth This film is one of those easy to watch rom-coms that you put on, chill out and enjoy.  Katherine Heigl seemed to want Jennifer Aniston’s rom-com queen crown around that time but seemed to fail when she was deemed ‘difficult’ to work with. 

Abby, played by Katherine Heigl  is a successful television producer and a very hopeless romantic that believes that she will meet the guy of her dreams one day.  Abby is watching TV alone (well, with her cat..) and comes across a ‘cable’ show called The Ugly Truth and it’s presenter/creator Mike Chadway, played by Gerard ButlerAbby is disgusted by Mike’s attitude and actually calls into his show, making a fool of herself in the process.  The next day her bosses all (coincidentally) saw the show and want to make it a feature of their morning show, Abby reluctantly agrees.

Abby meets Colin, played by Eric Winter and she is desperate for the relationship to work so she goes against her morals and get’s Mike to help her.  I mean it’s kind of a bet but still, why build a relationship being someone you’re not to try and prove a point? It’s obviously not going to end well…

This film has some good laughs and an OK story line highlighting what women think men (should) want and what men actually want.  Personally I think it’s all about opinions and based on individuals at certain times in life.  Everyone is in different situations, this film doesn’t really dig deep into that and misses, The Ugly Truth really. It’s a pretty predictable story line so don’t expect anything big but there’s worse films out there.

Acting is average and let’s face it there’s only so much you can do with a script like this but Gerard Butler does his best and makes this film.  Heigl is the same in every romantic comedy she’s cast in, nothing new here. The rest of the cast didn’t stand out but they did their jobs.

There’s no effects or anything in particular worth mentioning but like I said sadly this film does miss the point.  All men aren’t just after sex and all women aren’t just after marriage and babies (or vice versa).  This film massively stereotypes gender and it’s funny in parts but I’m getting a little tired of this same stereotype used constantly.

Overall, it’s easy watching and like I said, not the worst out there but it’s not one of the best romantic comedies either. It’s very predictable but if you’re at home looking for something to watch for a laugh then, why not?

Perfect Popcorn Score – I’m giving it a six, it’s your average rom-com with some good laughs but nothing to rave over – 6/10.

About Time (2013)

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I don’t normally see ‘rom-com’ type films at the cinema these days because at lot of them are very predictable, but I did catch this one on the big screen when it came out.  I’d seen the trailer when watching another film and I love Richard Curtis movies so this is one I just had to see.

The story is that all of the men in Tim’s family, on his fathers’ side can travel through time.  They’re not able to change history but they can change certain things in their own lives. Tim, played by Domhnall Gleeson, uses this opportunity to get himself a girlfriend (that’s it Tim think big…).

Tim meets Mary, played by Rachel McAdams in a sort of ‘blind date’ situation and uses his time travelling abilities to impress and then hopefully date her.  Tims’ Dad, played by Bill Nighy is always there to guide and advise Tim about life and his gift.  There are some laughs in this film but you just see life slightly differently when watching this, some of Tim’s plans don’t always work out and where or not you can travel through time, that’s just life for you.

The cast in this film are fantastic, I mean Bill Nighy is just a legend and Tom Hollander is brilliant as Tim’s land lord, the cynical writer Harry.  This was actually the first time I’d seen Margot Robbie in a film as Tim’s sister’s friend Charlotte.

There’s no effects to mention and I won’t go into wardrobe but I will, however say that this film is very bittersweet too watch. I can’t say too much as I try and review films without any spoilers but it does get emotional towards the end and the message of the film is explained.  It’s a cleverly written film and like I mentioned not all of Tim’s life goes to plan, there’s a catch or two to his gift that he has to learn and deal with.

It’s a lovely film to watch, the cast are brilliant and as with all of Curtis’ films, no one tries to outdo one another.  He directs and writes perfectly, something America have been trying to achieve for a while now with ‘flops’ such as Valentines Day.

Overall it’s a great, feel good film and defiantly one to watch with the family. I’ve got no complaints and this film is certainly on par with Curtis’s earlier work such as Notting Hill and Love Actually.

Perfect Popcorn Score – About Time gets a nine from me, it’s a great film, brilliant acting and a bittersweet ending that stays with you – 9/10.