American Made

Posted in Action, Biography, Crime, Drama with tags on January 15, 2018 by Mark Walker


Director: Doug Liman.
Screenplay: Gary Spinelli.
Starring: Tom Cruise, Domhnall Gleeson, Sarah Wright, Jesse Plemons, Caleb Landry Jones, Lola Kirke, Jayma Mays, Alejandro Edda, Benito Martinez, E. Roger Mitchell, Jed Rees, Mauricio Mejía, Jason Warner Smith.

“It ain’t about room, alright? It’s about weight”

Say what you will of Tom Cruise as I’m fully aware that some don’t take to him at all but, personally, I’ve always been a fan. That said, it’s been some years since I’ve fully embraced a film of his as nothing has really showcased his abilities. As good as they were, I turned a little cold on the Mission: Impossible series where Cruise seemingly focused on being an action star for a while. American Made, however, sees him return to what he does best. This is a tailor made role for the likes of Cruise’s cocksure mannerisms and shit-kicking grin. In fact, the film thrives on him in the lead which makes this very enjoyable entertainment. Continue reading

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Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Posted in Comedy, Drama with tags on January 8, 2018 by Mark Walker

Director: Martin McDonagh.
Screenplay: Martin McDonagh.
Starring: Frances McDormand, Sam Rockwell, Woody Harrelson, Peter Dinklage, John Hawkes, Caleb Landry Jones, Lucas Hedges, Abbie Cornish, Zeljko Ivanek, Kerry Condon, Amanda Warren, Malaya Rivera Drew, Kathryn Newton, Sandy Martin, Brendan Sexton III, Nick Searcy, Jerry Winsett, Darrell Britt-Gibson, Clarke Peters.

“What’s the law on what you can and can’t say on a billboard? I assume it’s you can’t say nothing defamatory, and you can’t say, ‘Fuck’, ‘Piss’ or ‘Cunt’. That right?”

Although Martin McDonagh’s last film, Seven Psychopaths, had a fervent fan base I was very disappointed in it; narratively it was all over the place and I found the humour to be extremely forced. With Three Billboards… it’s good to see that McDonagh has taken stock and decides to deliver something a bit different this time. Like his brother, John Michael, did after delivering laughs with The Guard, he followed it up with a more serious tone in Calvary and it was a magnificent change of direction. This doesn’t quite hit the same level as his brother’s aforementioned film but there’s still plenty to admire here. Continue reading

Dunkirk

Posted in History, War with tags on December 28, 2017 by Mark Walker


Director: Christopher Nolan.
Screenplay: Christopher Nolan.
Starring: Fionn Whitehead, Mark Rylance, Kenneth Branagh, Cillian Murphy, Tom Hardy, Barry Keoghan, Jack Lowden, Harry Styles, James D’Arcy, Kevin Guthrie, Adam Long.

“Men my age dictate this war. Why should we be allowed to send our children to fight it?”

It’s now fair to say that Christopher Nolan has become a director that instils huge anticipation when he announces a new film project. He’s equally adept at providing low-key, personal, thrillers like Memento and Insomnia and more than proved his worth with big-budget spectacles like The Dark Knight Trilogy, Inception and Interstellar. It’s fitting then that he tackle a war drama – a genre that demands an element of both approaches. After Steven Spielberg shell-shocked us with Saving Private Ryan and Terrence Malick encouraged us to ruminate and philosophise with The Thin Red Line, anyone treading the same ground had huge boots to fill. On this occasion, Nolan does an admirable job but I’d have to be honest and say that he doesn’t quite reach the high benchmark that had already been set by these contemporary films. Continue reading

Trivia Tidbits

Posted in Uncategorized on December 20, 2017 by Mark Walker

Welcome back to Trivia Tidbits. For those of you out of the loop, this is a little compilation of 10 movie related facts that I always find interesting. So without further ado, this weeks are…

1: Following J.R.R. Tolkien’s sale of the film rights for “The Lord of the Rings” to United Artists in 1969, The Beatles considered a corresponding film project and approached Stanley Kubrick as a potential director. However, Kubrick turned down the offer, explaining to John Lennon that he thought the novel could not be adapted into a film due to its immensity. The eventual director of the film adaptation, Peter Jackson, further explained that a major hindrance to the project’s progression was Tolkien’s opposition to the involvement of The Beatles. Continue reading

Everybody Wants Some!!

Posted in Comedy, Sport with tags on December 16, 2017 by Mark Walker


Director: Richard Linklater.
Screenplay: Richard Linklater.
Starring: Blake Jenner, Glen Powell, Tyler Hoechlin, Wyatt Russell, Ryan Guzman, J. Quinton Johnson, Temple Baker, Austin Amelio, Zoey Deutch, Juston Street, Will Brittain, Tanner Kalina, Jonathan Breck.

“We came for a good time, not for a long time”

I have never been one to hide my admiration for director Richard Linklater. I’ve always found him to be a hugely talented filmmaker and he’s always struck me as a very intelligent and savvy individual. Whenever a new project of his arrives, I’m always filled with anticipation, especially one that’s been mentioned in the same breath as his indie classic Dazed and Confused. Why is it then, that Everybody Wants Some!! left me with ever so slight feelings of disappointment? This could simply be explained by having very high expectations so for that reason I waited until I watched the film again before making any final judgements on it. Turns out, my opinion didn’t change. Everybody Wants Some!! has many great qualities but it doesn’t quite hit the heights of its predecessor. Continue reading

Jawbone

Posted in Drama, Sport with tags on December 11, 2017 by Mark Walker

Director: Thomas Napper.
Screenplay: Johnny Harris.
Starring: Johnny Harris, Ray Winstone, Ian McShane, Michael Smiley, Luke J.I. Smith, Anna Wilson-Hall.

“I don’t know what demons you’re fighting but when all this is done and dusted, just walk away. You can’t fight forever, son”

Let’s face it, boxing is a brutal and unforgiving sport. But it’s also reflective of class. Rarely, if ever, is it taken from the point of view of the privileged or the upper-classes. It’s a sport that offers the working class a chance to break free from their poverty or a chance of absolution from personal demons or afflictions. From Rocky to The Champ or Raging Bull to The Fighter, boxing flicks often provide raw and gritty, blue collar entertainment and Jawbone is no exception. Continue reading

The Ten Best Christmas Movies – Relay Race.

Posted in Uncategorized on December 6, 2017 by Mark Walker

Just recently an old blogger friend and I got to chatting. We spoke of how the blogosphere has changed dramatically since we entered into it. Which, as a result, led to him coming up with the idea that it would be nice to do an old school blogothon again.

The blogger in question is Nostra who runs the site My Filmviews and you can find the original post here. So, to introduce the relay race, I’ll leave it on the simplistic terms that he has laid out…
The goal of this new relay race is to find an answer to that question. The rules are, just like the past relay races (which Nostra did ages ago), very simple: The list has 10 Christmas movies (in random order) and when the baton is handed over to a new blogger, he or she has to remove one title of the list (with an explanation why) and add one new title. Once that is done a new blogger is contacted who will take the baton and run with it, doing the same (you can reinstate a title which has been previously removed). Now on to the initial 10 movies!… Continue reading