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Don Cheadle

Kicking off the year’s film watching with Flight

Flight - starring Denzel Washington, directed by Robert Zemeckis

An airline pilot saves a flight from crashing, but an investigation into the malfunctions reveals something troubling.

The first day of the first month of 2013 and I’m getting started with my film challenge for the year – watch at least 100 new-to-me films within the year. And the first film? Flight. Starring Denzel Washington and directed by Robert Zemeckis, who hasn’t done a live action film since Castaway.

I admit it. I have a soft spot for Denzel Washington. I wouldn’t go so far as to say I don’t think he can do no wrong, but he can almost do no wrong. Even with last year’s Safe House, while the film wasn’t the strongest, his performance was the best part of the film.

Flight is a much stronger film. It’s does have its flaws, but Flight is an engaging and thoughtful film. If a little repetitive at times. Watching the self-destructive Whip Whitaker drown himself in booze and drugs is depressing. Here’s a guy who’s a straight up hero, clearly has a drinking problem and yet can’t admit to himself that he needs help. And yet, it was how Whip’s addiction was written was one of the weakest aspects of the film. Drilled home time and time again. I get it. He’s an alcoholic. He’s a jerk. Let’s move on!

Despite this weakness in Flight, I enjoyed watching. It’s probably not the best film depicting addiction (The Basketball Diaries holds that mantle for me). But from the beginning watching the disaster of the doomed flight unfold to the ever excellent comic timing of John Goodman, it’s hard to keep your attention off the film. The final conclusion is sign posted a good mile before the end. But, by then it doesn’t matter. Denzel’s performance sells this film for me.

Flight (Viewed: 01/01/13 | Rating: 4/5)

Check out all of the films I’ve seen this year: Continue Reading

100 movies: Start of the summer blockbusters

Think Iron Man 2 marks the start of the summer blockbusters, am I right?

Iron Man 2 (03/05/10)
Comic book sequels have a patchy history. For every Dark Knight you’ve got a Silver Surfer. The comic book hero origin story seems to be the easiest thing to do, though taking it further is a little bit more tricky. While Iron Man 2 wasn’t as good or as well put together as the first one, it still was a very enjoyable comic book movie. A lot better than some of the ones that have been released and I think a worthy successor to the first film. There was a point during the film I was beginning to think that the movie was getting a little bit crowded – a lot of heavy hitters all wanting screen time. Think the balance was there. Robert Downey Jr and Gwyneth Paltrow are the best pieces of casting for this movie – I’ve not been a huge fan of Gwyneth pre-Iron Man (Apart from Sliding Doors) but I LOVE her as Pepper Potts! It was strange not to miss Terrence Howard as Rhodes – Don Cheadle was good! Oh and John Slattery as Howard Stark made me giggle inside more than it should have! Him and his little ‘tache.

The beginning of the film was a bit all over the place – well the middle got a bit like that, but it sorted itself out. The action sequences were awesome – just what I wanted out of them. I feel as though I need to see the first film again now.
Rating: 4/5

Read more to see the full list of movies I’ve seen so far this year.

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