Fast & Furious 8

As I have seen all of the other atrocious films in this series, I thought I may as well watch the latest (on Amazon Prime). Five minutes in I was regretting my decision, but as I have a policy of finishing every film I start, I carried on.

The opening scene involved a race between Vin Diesel and a repo-man who at first seemed like a really obnoxious guy, but after Vin won in the most ridiculous way possible (of course), he turned out to be a stand-up guy after Vin won him over.

It was all even more downhill from there with all of the usual over-the-top action sequences, bravado, silly one-liners and predictable jokes, and what-not. The CG in places was terrible.

But, there were two scenes which saved the whole film from instant bargain-bin DVD hell. The first was Helen Mirren. She was very funny as the hard-talking, potty-mouthed mother of Jason Statham’s character. She only had a few minutes in all, but she alone made it all worthwhile. Another scene involving Jason Statham and a baby on a plane as he fought off several bad guys was funny too. Kurt Russell was good because he is Kurt Russell. Everything else was pretty forgettable, in fact it is already disappearing from my long-term memory.

I am quite convinced the story was written by a bunch of teenagers, and all of the dialogue was ad-libbed by the actors to save money so they could spend it on sports cars and a submarine. Vin Diesel was probably told to mention how important family is, and to say it at least 100 times throughout the film.

Looking back at my Fast & Furious 7 review I see that I enjoyed it, mostly because it was just so over-the-top and silly fun. This one though was just more of the same, too much of the same.

The next installment is due out in 2020…I guess I am bound to watch it.

Date watched: February 10th
Score: 3/10
Film count 2018: 12


Not a great start to my movie viewing year this, Bright is a Netflix produced film and it is pretty terrible, it can’t decide if it’s a comedy, or sci-fi, or social comment, or drama. It ends up being a mess, and is cheap looking even though it had a big budget. It is set in some alternative Los Angeles where humans, Orcs and Elves live together. It follows two cops who find some magic wand which everyone wants etc. Yawn! The main Orc cop was good, at least the actor looked like he was enjoying himself. He can enjoy himself more in the just announced sequel, hopefully the audience can as well for that one!

Date watched: 5th January
Score: 3/10
Film count 2018: 1

Star Wars VI: Return of the Jedi

James and I watched this in two parts, finishing the second part tonight.

Ewoks, damn frickin’ Ewoks.

The rest was pretty decent really, Georgie did a pretty good job on the main story, but he seemed to just take too many happy pills at some point, and dreamed up the Ewok horror which almost borked the whole thing.

Thank goodness for Disney.

Date watched: December 1st
Score (not including Ewoks): 7.5/10
Score (including Ewoks): 3/10
Film count 2017: 136

You Must Be Joking!

This is a 1965 British comedy film starring Terry Thomas, Denholm Elliot, and a few other familiar faces from British comedy.

It was supposed to be a madcap and nutty comedy with all kinds of sillines, but I don’t remember any particularly funny bits, although Terry Thomas is always funny, even when he doesn’t actually say anything funny. I actually watched this over three sessions because I just didn’t feel like watching it in one go.

The story is about some army guys who have to go on a scavenger hunt to test their initiative. They are tasked with getting things like an electric rabbit (greyhound rabbit), the “Spirit of Ecstasy” from a Rolls Royce, and , the Lutine bell from Lloyds of London, among other random things.

The best thing about the film was the acting. All of the actors were doing the best with what they were given, and they are obviously funny people, but the script was just not up to the task methinks.

Well, at least I can say I have seen it if it ever pops up in a conversation some day.

Date watched: November 9th (final third)
Score: 3/10
Film count 2017: 125


This is directed by Clint Eastwood, about the real life crash landing of a passenger plane into the Hudson River in 2009. I actually fast-forwarded most of this as it was really dull. Tom Hanks is always good to watch but it’s one of those films where you know what happens, give me a doco instead! The National Transportation Safety Board come across as the bad guys, which they never were of course, Hollywood artistic license rears its drab head again.

Date watched: 20th August
Score: 3/10
Film count 2017: 43

Terminator Genisys

Oh dear, this is a complete boring mess. And quite an embarrassment to this once great sci-fi franchise. Arnold returns and says the same old lines, there is the same confusing time travel time line to follow (after a while I couldn’t be bothered), and there is the predictable ‘Oh, he’s the bad guy.’ bit. The Terminator? The Disappointer.

Date watched: 5th August
Score: 3/10
Film count 2017: 40

Stark Fear

Netflix is not that great for watching films, just TV series, so I have been going back to YouTube to watch quality old films. This film though is supposedly a grindhouse film so not much was to be expected.

And it was pretty bad stuff. It was cheaply made, and cheaply acted, but the worst was the story which at times seemed rather random. Basically the story was about a husband who thought his wife (Ellen) was cheating with his former business acquaintance (Joe), so he sets about getting a divorce in Mexico (not sure what that was about, some kind of loophole or something), and also plots to have her killed (it turned out later that his mother whose name was Ellen, abused him as a child, so he married an Ellen to get some kind of twisted revenge on his mother). Ellen though still loved him and when his boss tells her he must return to work or he will be fired, she sets about finding him. This leads us on a bizarre journey to his hometown which is populated by psycho-country bumpkins, so she gets into all kinds of trouble. To cut a long story short, she has some inner tormoil about her life, then gets talked into going to Joe by her friend so they can live happily ever after (“You have to get on that plane and go to him”!).

Ellen was played by an actress named Beverly Garland who looked familiar but I couldn’t place her. Turns out she was in My Three Sons and Scarecrow and Mrs. King, although I didn’t really watch either of those, just in passing maybe.

There isn’t really much going for this, if anything. It wasn’t terrible, I have seen worse, but I should have watched another western instead.

Date watched: August 11th
Score: 3/10
Film count 2017: 89