Wednesday, December 18, 2013

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

SF: On a par with the first installment. That is to say, from a cinematic point of view this is beautiful, has amazing effects, lovely scenery and the production value is excellent. The first hour was rather enjoyable, however I did find it dragged a great deal towards the second and third hours. However plenty of brilliant things about this (the effect of Thranduil's face) but equally many awful additions which made no sense to me at all (the love story) and didn't enhance the story in anyway. Dragon looks amazing! But wasn't thrilled by this movie as a whole. Of course I'll still see the next one 6/10

50 Eggs: I've just re-watched the first on DVD and, on reflection, it's actually fairly boring. This is much better though. All the things I was looking forward to seeing were in there, and I loved the 'extra' scenes scrounged from Silmarilion and Unfinished Tails, such as Gandalfs face-off with Sauron. I do agree with SF on one point though - the love story was ridiculous and unnecessary. The last act was the best, with Cumberbatch making an awesome Smaug. Credit to Freeman too - he is so much better than Elijah Wood ever was. 8/10

DonkeyB: n/a

Overall: 7/10

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

SF: On a par with its predecessor, suffice to say its an average film. The visuals and set design are spot on but this suffers from the exact same flaw I loathed the previous version for - absolutely no depth to any of the three main characters. It astonishes me that this film and the franchise have so much potential and its clearly being wasted. Rather then listing all my grievances again see the previous review here. 5/10

50 Eggs: For me the first Hunger Games book should've been the last, as the quality took a sharp dip for the second, and a vertical plunge for the third. So no surprises that I feel the same about the film. The story just has no-where to go and it ends up been a poor-mans rehash of the first. It annoys me that this child friendly rubbish is so successful when what the world really needs is a full-on 18 rated remake of Battle Royale. 4/10

DonkeyB: n/a

Overall: 4.5/10

Monday, December 2, 2013

Saving Mr Banks

SF: You don't have to have seen or love Mary Poppins to watch this film but it will help. That aside this is a genuinely lovely film for the most part. There are some very emotional scenes and a number of touching moments. The director manages to blend the present sequence of events and memories in a nice fashion that isn't too condescending to the audience. Emma Thompson superb and rather understated performance is rather refreshing. The film manages to be moving and funny in just the right measure. 7/10

50 Eggs: n/a

DonkeyB: At the time I thought this was great fun, but I have to say as I've sat on this review for several weeks, I'm less and less enamoured with the film. I know I am biased against Mr Farrell, in fairness I did have to sit all the way through both 7 Psychopaths and Total Recall, but part of me was with the noisy German behind me who talked all through the film, dropped his change on the floor part way through (etc) when he took to shouting "why don't you just die already" every time poor Colin appeared as Mrs Travers' father. Way too much Australia. In the end however good Emma Thompson's performance (I would pay to watch her read out the phone book, but not Jane Austen) I was left wondering, to what end? 5.5/10

Overall: 6.25/10