What I've been watching: Last five films

What I’ve been watching: Last five films

Film

Pre-Bahrain I spent a fair amount of my weekends in Summer at the cinema. Well, maybe not weekends, but certainly a lot of Friday nights. See, I’m a sucker for blockbuster films.

Sure we get them here. But as I’ve mentioned before, films can tend to be cut. But you’re left guessing as to which films and what’s been cut. The safest thing for a film fan like myself to do is just see the film on the small screen. So while I wait for summer blockbusters, I catch up on other films.

It’s been such a long time since I mentioned anything film related on this blog. I’ve been wondering whether it fits in anymore here. But I tend to over think things. So to tell with the wondering and here’s the last five films I’ve seen. That are mostly not even recent releases.

Film Review: Guardians of the Galaxy

Film

Guardians of the Galaxy

Do you remember when the first Guardians of the Galaxy trailer was released to the masses and the masses balked? This isn’t a Marvel comic book film, were the cries. There was space, and spaceships and people with green skin. Ohh… people.

That trailer totally got me. My knowledge of the Marvel universe is limited. Did not have the remotest clue about Guardians of the Galaxy. Nothing. It was new. It looked different. And after the disappointment of Man of Steel, Thor: The Dark World and, to a lesser extent, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, I really needed to see a comic book film that would restore my faith in the genre.

Guardians of the Galaxy

Peter Quill – sly devil.

James Gunn’s Gaurdians of the Galaxy did just that. Guardians takes us out of the well-known universe and plonks us somewhere completely alien, while still building a universe and arc that’s going to be pivotal in Avengers: Age of Ultron. It’s funny, witty, dry and sarcastic. It’s a mainstream James Gunn film. And a good one. A GREAT one.

Guardians of the Galaxy felt very much like The Avengers – putting the band together. But with Guardians the band of misfits really felt like a proper band of misfits. Misfits, outcasts and those who don’t fit in. None of these guys can be classed as “genius, billionaire, playboy philanthropist” – somewhere Peter, Gamora, Drax, Groot and Rocket just fell of a wagon and carved their own paths.

Thoroughly enjoyed the action in the film. It just feels like it’s been forever since there was a good space based film. (Just as I typed that, my brain went to Interstellar. What I mean is a space sci-fi pulp feeling film. K?) The final battle was incredible. It was perfectly done with some actually very emotional moments alongside Gamora and Nebula slogging it out and epic air battle going on around it all.

Guardians of the Galaxy

I am Groot.

The score disappointed. Tyler Bates’ score didn’t shine in the film. It didn’t bring anything to the moments it was backing. Then on listening to it as a standalone album, I can’t remember much of it. Perhaps I’m moving on from the “soundtrack-y” sounding scores. BUT the actual movie soundtrack is fantastic – the awesome mix vol. 1 was the oddly perfect selection of songs for the film.

Chris Pratt knocked it out of the park as Peter. Funny, intelligent, witty – completely sold on Star Lord. Was surprised how attached I got to both Rocket and Groot. Especially Rocket – the film did a brilliant job at not over sentimentalising the shitty situations each of the Guardians were previously in. Or saw themselves as.

Guardians of the Galaxy

An utterly magical moment in the film.

And it’s that that made the film for me. Despite all the glorious space opera going on and the action – the Guardians of the Galaxy themselves were each incredibly relatable characters. At one point in our lives, we’ve all felt some of what these characters have portrayed. And look at them – they’re fucking heroes who still have a long way to go.

In-flight entertainment… poor choices?

Film

Before heading off to Bahrain, it had been a very long time since I’d gone on a long haul flight. But I always have one rule when it comes to what to watch. Don’t watch anything that needs more than an ounce of attention and concentration. Keep it light. Because you know you’re going to have to pause for the food, drinks and random fellow passenger interruptions.

See, I was conflicted. There were so many films I wanted to watch – Mud, The Hunt, Monsters University, The Great Gatsby, among others. But I can’t do that to films. I can’t watch films that could potentially be amazing with a dodgy set of headphones and a tiny screen. I just can’t.

So what did I end up watching? Well nothing on the way there. Sleep was what I needed. On the way back? I needed to stay awake, so was intending to cram as many as I could in the 7 or so hours. Looked through the films that were available and was looking for some silly action, comedy, is short and anything that doesn’t require a single brain cell.

100 movies: New York, I Love You

100 movies of 2012

Every year I set myself a target, usually of about 100, of films to watch. These are new films. Not new, new films. But films that are new to me. Any time I’ve seen a new one, I post a bit of a brain dump of my thoughts on the film here. Enjoy!

New York, I Love YouNew York, I Love You (25/05/12)

An anthology film joining several love stories set in one of the most loved cities of the world, New York.

After watching this film, I don’t think I ‘get’ anthology films. Or maybe this was just a particularly bad one. It felt like it was going to go on forever, one story following another, with no end in sight. And no real tangible thing connecting the stories. Maybe I missed some of the points.

Here we have a collection of love story-esque stories happening across New York, across the races, ages, everything. All the short films are directed by a bunch of different directors, including Brett Ratner, Joshua Marston, and Natalie Portman herself. Maybe it was all the different directors which made this anthology just feel too disjointed. I get it’s not a typical film, but it just didn’t work for me.

The film does do a good job of selling New York and there are some very nicely put together shorts. Ethan Hawke’s little section stood out for me. Always love the characters he plays, no matter how seedy they can come across.

Some good performances, but towards the end of this average length film I was just willing it to end. Finally it did. To my relief.
Rating: 2/5

Read on to see all the films watched this year…

120+ Movies: Limitless

120+ Movies of 2011

LimitlessLimitless (29/08/11)

A writer discovers a top-secret drug which bestows him with super human abilities.

I think the trailers and marketing sell this film short. Very short. It’s a surprisingly good film. Or maybe that was the marketing bods idea.

The opening scene reminded me of Vanilla Sky. I guess there were some similarities, in that you’re left thinking if everything’s real or not. Or maybe that was just me.

Bradley Cooper is a great lead. Though I’m lost as to how they made him so unattractive at certain points in the film. I didn’t think it was possible.

Back to the film, it’s hard to say anything without giving away some major plot points. I’ll just repeat what I said before – it’s a good film, just ignore the trailer and marketing.
Rating: 3/5

Read on to see the entire list of movies seen this year so far: