Sunday, 20 August 2017

TV

The Defenders
1x03 Worst Behavior
1x04 Royal Dragon

Designated Survivor
1x05 The Mission
1x06 The Interrogation

this week on 100 Films

Not that much to report this week from 100 Films in a Year, though the two things I did post were quite lengthy.

First, my latest TV review roundup, including Game of Thrones, Line of Duty, Peaky Blinders, Top of the Lake: China Girl, Twin Peaks, and more...





Secondly (and finally), another film review roundup, including quick thoughts on Headshot, Money Monster, and Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen - Big Screen Edition...





More next Sunday.

Saturday, 19 August 2017

TV

The Defenders
1x01 The H Word
1x02 Mean Right Hook

Designated Survivor
1x03 The Confession
1x04 The Enemy

Collection Count

Collection Count tracks my DVD/Blu-ray collection via a number of statistics every week.

There wasn't much to say this week, but then a bunch of stuff turned up surprisingly early on Saturday, and instead of one title with one film there was... well, all of this...

Number of titles in collection: 2,017 [up 3]
Of which DVDs: 1,173 [down 1]
Of which Blu-rays: 844 [up 4]

Number of discs in collection: 5,185 [up 9]
Number of films: 2,247 [up 5]
Number of TV episodes: 7,910 [no change]
Number of short films: 584 [up 1]

Also, it's time for another running time update! Hurrah!

Total running time of collection (approx.):
386 days, 4 hours, and 16 minutes.
(Up 1 day, 13 hours, and 38 minutes from last month.)

See you next week, faithful reader.

Friday, 18 August 2017

Wednesday, 16 August 2017

TV

The Bletchley Circle
2x03 Uncustomed Goods Part 1
2x04 Uncustomed Goods Part 2 [series finale]

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Sunday, 13 August 2017

Films

Death Note 2: The Last Name (2006)
[#112 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]
aka Desu nôto: The last name

My plan to watch loads of films this weekend has, uh, not gone to plan.

this week on 100 Films

5 brand-new reviews were published to 100 Films in a Year this week, and they were...


Arrival (2016)
An intelligent sci-fi movie released by a major studio? What madness is this? A good kind of madness, because Arrival is one of the best — and, importantly, most humane — science fiction movies for years.
Read more here.


Free Fire (2016)
If an hour-long gunfight doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, maybe Free Fire isn’t the movie for you. Conversely, this isn’t a Jason Statham flick: instead of an hour of highly-choreographed gunplay, most of the participants get injured early on and end up seeking cover around the rubble-strewn floor of an abandoned factory, occasionally taking potshots at each other. Most action movies are defined by their characters sprinting about — in this one, they crawl.
Read more here.


The Fugitive (1993)
Once upon a time this was a blockbuster; nowadays it’d be a mid-budget thriller… and probably wouldn’t get made because Hollywood doesn’t do those anymore. It’s a pleasingly ’90s manhunt movie — they can’t just track his mobile phone or zoom in with a satellite or what have you — but, aside from the nostalgia kick, the quality is a bit wobbly at times. It has strong performances, a breakneck pace (at least early on), and some stunning sequences, but the behind-the-scenes story of many, many drafts and a rushed schedule occasionally leave their mark on the screen
Read more here.


Shin Godzilla (2016)
Written and directed by Hideaki Anno of Neon Genesis Evangelion fame, Shin Godzilla is not just a film about a giant beastie stomping on things. Most obviously, it pitches itself as a kind of political thriller, as an intrepid gang of semi-outsiders battle establishment red tape to get anything done. In this respect it’s something of a satire, though not an overtly comedic one. It also seems to be taking on Japanese society, with the in-built deference to age or rank being an obstacle to problem-solving when it's the young who have the outside-the-box ideas
Read more here.


Suicide Squad (2016)
That there were editing tussles becomes evident almost immediately: the way it introduces Deadshot and Harley before cutting to Waller pitching her plan is a little clunky, surely a re-ordering to get the big-name characters on screen ASAP... However, it really goes awry when Waller’s pitch and introduction of the Enchantress is immediately followed by another meeting where Waller makes her pitch and introduces the Enchantress. Maybe the screenplay was that clunkingly constructed to begin with, or maybe they just made a ham-fisted job of the restructuring.
Read more here.


More next Sunday.

Saturday, 12 August 2017

Films

Jaws (1975)
[2nd watch]
Rewatchathon 2017 #28

Nashville (1975)
[#111 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]
Blindspot 2017 #8

Collection Count

Collection Count tracks my DVD/Blu-ray collection via a number of statistics every week.

Not a great deal to report this week. Well, four new additions, which would be a lot to most people, but things get crazy around here sometimes, and they arrived in two batches almost a whole week apart so it didn't feel like so many.

Anyway...

Number of titles in collection: 2,014 [up 4]
Of which DVDs: 1,174 [no change]
Of which Blu-rays: 840 [up 4]

Number of discs in collection: 5,176 [up 6]
Number of films: 2,242 [up 5]
Number of TV episodes: 7,910 [no change]
Number of short films: 583 [up 1]

See you next week, faithful reader.

Friday, 11 August 2017

Films

Arrival (2016)
[2nd watch]
Rewatchathon 2017 #27
+ all the UK Blu-ray's special features, and the Eternal Recurrence: The Score featurette the left off it.

Death Note (2006)
[#110 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]
aka Desu nôto

Thursday, 10 August 2017

TV

8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown
9x03 (19/8/16 edition)

I used to watch this regularly, back when it started, because it's silly and funny but sometimes kinda clever. Then it took off and they started making far too much of it, so I stopped. That was almost two years ago. But I was at a loose end this evening and caught this one on 4seven.

[Watch it (again) on All 4.]

Wednesday, 9 August 2017

TV

The Bletchley Circle
1x02 Cracking a Killer's Code Part 2
1x03 Cracking a Killer's Code Part 3 [season finale]

Films

Ghost in the Shell 3D (2017)
[2nd watch]
Rewatchathon 2017 #26

My full review from when I watched this at the cinema is here, and I left a short comment on Letterboxd about this rewatch.

Sunday, 6 August 2017

TV

Peaky Blinders
2x05 Episode 5

Films

The Fugitive (1993)
[2nd or so watch]

Rewatchathon 2017 #25

+ the Blu-ray's special features (bar the commentary)

this week on 100 Films

It was a brand-new month back on Tuesday, meaning it's time for 100 Films in a Year to look back at the month before...





There was also just 1 brand-new reviews published this week...


22 Jump Street (2014)
they’ve taken one of the most memorable and likeable bits of the first movie — the meta-jokes at the expense of the film itself — and ramped them up to 11. And it works. Or, at least, it did for me. Is this the most meta comedy ever? I dunno, but I can’t think of another that so relentlessly riffs off both the expected tropes of its genre and its own status as a sequel.
Read more here.


More next Sunday.

Saturday, 5 August 2017

TV

Peaky Blinders
2x03 Episode 3
2x04 Episode 4

Films

This is the End (2013)
[#109 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

Collection Count

Collection Count tracks my DVD/Blu-ray collection via a number of statistics every week.

Ten new acquisitions this week, but the net change is just +5 thanks to various upgrades -- some DVD to Blu-ray, some 2D to 3D, and one collating several individual DVDs into a single Blu-ray set. The total of actual new-to-my-collection titles? Five. Well, I guess that's kinda appropriate then.

Number of titles in collection: 2,010 [up 5]
Of which DVDs: 1,174 [down 4]
Of which Blu-rays: 836 [up 9]

Number of discs in collection: 5,170 [up 9]
Number of films: 2,237 [up 6]
Number of TV episodes: 7,910 [no change]
Number of short films: 582 [no change]

See you next week, faithful reader.

Thursday, 3 August 2017

Wednesday, 2 August 2017

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Sunday, 30 July 2017

TV

Top of the Lake: China Girl
Part 3 Surrogate
Part 4 Birthday
[Watch Surrogate and Birthday (again) on iPlayer.]

Films

Sing 3D (2016)
[#107 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

this week on 100 Films

3 brand-new reviews were published to 100 Films in a Year this week, and they were...


Finding Nemo (2003)
it’s packed to the gills with engaging characters, memorable lines, funny ideas, colourful designs, and a couple of strong moral messages. It’s a true family movie.
Read more here.


Kong: Skull Island (2017)
a monster B-movie realised with a modern blockbuster budget and a dose of class from director Jordan Vogt-Roberts. Its major thrills come from the dust-ups between humans and giant beasties, or giant beasties and other giant beasties, but these are executed with a verve and enthusiasm that renders them a constant delight. Vogt-Roberts unleashes his skill with a palpable sense of excitement for the material, never seeming to hold back as he fills the entire movie with cool imagery and vibrant colours.
Read more here.


Moana (2016)
The songs are a toe-tapping treat too, with Moana’s big number, How Far I’ll Go, a more likeable earworm than certain other Disney songs about going; a David Bowie-inspired villain’s song, Shiny; and, my personal favourite, a comedy number sung by the Rock called You’re Welcome (with some 2D-that-looks-fab-in-3D animation).
Read more here.


More next Sunday.

Saturday, 29 July 2017

TV

Top of the Lake: China Girl
Part 2 The Loved One
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

Films

Drive (2011)
[#106 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

What Do You Mean You Haven't Seen...? 2017 #7

+ the UK Blu-ray's special features

Collection Count

Collection Count tracks my DVD/Blu-ray collection via a number of statistics every week.

Number of titles in collection: 2,005 [up 3]
Of which DVDs: 1,178 [no change]
Of which Blu-rays: 827 [up 3]

Number of discs in collection: 5,161 [up 5]
Number of films: 2,230 [up 3]
Number of TV episodes: 7,910 [no change]
Number of short films: 582 [no change]

See you next week, faithful reader.

Friday, 28 July 2017

TV

The Musketeers
3x01 Spoils of War

Top of the Lake: China Girl
Part 1 China Girl
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

Films

Free Fire (2016)
[#105 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

+ the Blu-ray's special feature (a short but interesting making-of) and the first half-hour of the audio commentary

Thursday, 27 July 2017

TV

Sherlock
1x00 A Study in Pink [unaired pilot]
Finally got round to watching this, after having it on Blu-ray for years (it's included as a special feature on series one). It's not actually all that bad -- I'd always assumed that it must look terribly cheap or something, but while it's undoubtedly not as slick as the finished version, it's perfectly fine. And the acting, dialogue, pace, etc, was all there right from the get-go -- that survived pretty much intact.

Films

Ocean's Thirteen (2007)
[2nd watch]

Rewatchathon 2017 #24

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

TV

Wallander [British]
4x03 The Troubled Man [series finale]

Films

Get Out (2017)
[#104 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Monday, 24 July 2017

Sunday, 23 July 2017

TV

The Persuaders!
1x16 Anyone Can Play

Pitch Battle
1x06 Episode 6 [season finale]
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

this week on 100 Films

This week on 100 Films in a Year, this month's second 'monthly' TV review...





Also, 2 brand-new reviews...


Dunkirk (2017)
the main effect Nolan was aiming for is intensity. Not of war, so much, but of survival. That this is a PG-13 war movie caused some to balk — how can you depict war nowadays without blood and gore? But this isn’t a war movie per se, it’s an escape movie. It’s not about the reality of someone getting their arm or head blown off, it’s about escaping a sinking ship, or running out of fuel, or keeping going when the odds are against you. Couple this with the aforementioned visual spectacle, and a thunderous sound mix, and Dunkirk is definitely an Experience.
Read more here.


Ocean's Eleven (2001)
Apparently Soderbergh said that he saw this as an opportunity to give audiences “pleasure from beginning to end… a movie that you just surrender to, without embarrassment and without regret.” Well, he nailed it. It’s a film packed with likeable characters, memorable lines, snazzy direction, cool music cues, and the raison d’être of a heist movie: a final act that pulls the wool over the audience’s eyes.
Read more here.


More next Sunday.

Saturday, 22 July 2017

TV

Line of Duty
3x06 Episode 6 [season finale]

Collection Count

Collection Count tracks my DVD/Blu-ray collection via a number of statistics every week.

Number of titles in collection: 2,002 [up 2]
Of which DVDs: 1,178 [no change]
Of which Blu-rays: 824 [up 2]

Number of discs in collection: 5,156 [up 24]
Number of films: 2,227 [up 2]
Number of TV episodes: 7,910 [up 111]
Number of short films: 582 [up 1]

Since the last running time update I've added 34 films and 126 episodes of TV, which means quite a bump this month...

Total running time of collection (approx.):
384 days, 14 hours, and 38 minutes.
(Up 6 days, 20 hours, and 28 minutes from last month.)

See you next week, faithful reader.

Friday, 21 July 2017

Thursday, 20 July 2017

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Sunday, 16 July 2017

TV

The Persuaders!
1x15 Someone Waiting

+

Films

Joining the likes of Citizen Kane, Lawrence of Arabia, and One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest in my #100 club, it's...

City of God (2002)
[#100 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

this week on 100 Films

4 brand-new reviews were published to 100 Films in a Year this week, and they were...


Contact (1997)
Contact is 20 years old this week. I don’t remember it going down particularly well on its release (Rotten Tomatoes backs me up on that: it scores just 62%) and I’ve largely paid it no heed, other than it still comes up now and then. I can’t remember what gave me a sudden urge to watch it last month, but doing so was a bit of a “where have you been all my life?!” experience.
Read more here.


Nocturnal Animals (2016)
Although the story is black as night, it’s a beautifully constructed film — as you might expect from someone with a background in design like writer-director Tom Ford. It’s not just the visually appealing work of cinematographer Seamus McGarvey or the film’s various designers that is so striking, though. The three narrative strands are expertly handled. There’s never any doubt about which is which, even when Ford at times intercuts between all three in one sequence, but he hasn’t resorted to simplistic tricks (like vastly different colour grading, say) to pull that off. It’s subtler, and more effective, than that.
Read more here.


Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017)
As everyone well knows by now (thanks to it being repeated ad infinitum in the previous Spidey movies), the catchphrase of the Spider-Man franchise is “with great power comes great responsibility”. However, it’s not said once in this film. Instead, it’s threaded through the very core of the film’s story and character arcs. It’s the lesson everyone comes to learn. It’s what Stark is trying to teach Peter by giving him a fancy suit with a lot of its special features disabled, and by discouraging him from biting off more than he can chew. When Peter gets himself in too deep, as he does repeatedly, it always comes close to costing innocent lives. It’s a lesson Stark learns too, though.
Read more here.


War for the Planet of the Apes (2017)
This is not a war movie in the sense of it being two hours of epic battles. There’s a set-to at the start (one which reminded me of the opening of Saving Private Ryan without in any meaningful way being a rip off of it), and a big battle forms the backdrop to the climax, but in between the film is something else. Or, rather, somethings else: there are multiple genres one could cite as an influence on the film as it transitions betweens phases of its story. There’s a bit of the “men on a mission” thing going on, with an edge of the Western in there, before it turns into a POW camp movie of sorts, with a healthy dose of Apocalypse Now for good measure.
Read more here.


More next Sunday.

Saturday, 15 July 2017

TV

Pitch Battle
1x05 Episode 5
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

Wallander [British]
4x01 The White Lioness
So, it's over a year since this was on and five years since I watched the last series. Where does time go?! Anyway, this was a particularly good one, with absolutely stunning location photography in South Africa.

Collection Count

Collection Count tracks my DVD/Blu-ray collection via a number of statistics every week.

This week, my collection lands on exactly 2,000 titles. Crikey. When I started this weekly update, almost 8 years ago, I'd only fairly recently crossed 1,000. (I say "fairly recently" -- that first edition counts 1,057 titles, which, based on my acquisition rate over the last 8 years, means I actually passed 1,000 around 5 or 6 months earlier.)

What interests me is how much things have increased -- not just the plain number, but on a percentage basis. For instance, I assumed there would be way more discs in the newer 1,000 titles, due to the proliferation of DVD copies in Blu-ray releases and probably buying more box sets, but that's not completely the case: the number of films and TV episodes have both more than doubled, but the number of discs hasn't. That said, where there was an average of 2.475 discs per title back in 2009, now the average is 2.566, so it has gone up on the whole.

Anyway, here are the actual stats, with the percentage increase since that first edition also included. (I didn't count shorts until later, so no increase stat there.)

Number of titles in collection: 2,000 [up 4] [up 89.21% since 2009]
Of which DVDs: 1,178 [no change] [up 15.04% since 2009]
Of which Blu-rays: 822 [up 4] [up 2,390.91% since 2009]

Number of discs in collection: 5,132 [up 16] [up 96.18% since 2009]
Number of films: 2,225 [up 10] [up 103.38% since 2009]
Number of TV episodes: 7,799 [no change] [up 113.55% since 2009]
Number of short films: 582 [up 1]

Look at that Blu-ray percentage! Mad.

Anyway -- see you next week, faithful reader.

Friday, 14 July 2017

Thursday, 13 July 2017

Monday, 10 July 2017

Sunday, 9 July 2017

Films

Jersey Boys (2014)
[#97 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

Planet of the Apes (1968)
[#96 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]
Blindspot 2017 #7

this week on 100 Films

It's a busy time on the telly right now, so I brought 100 Films in a Year's monthly TV update forward a fortnight to this week...





Plus, there were 6 brand-new reviews this week...


The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension (1984)
I’ve found it quite hard to tell what I thought of Buckaroo Banzai. On the one hand, I can definitely see where it gets its cult appeal, and I appreciate some of the ways it’s being different and boundary pushing. On the other, there’s been a definite backlash to it and I can appreciate where that comes from too — the criticism that some of that “boundary pushing” is merely sloppy storytelling and crazy overacting. There are parts where it’s hard to tell if it was deliberate and quite clever, or just incompetently done.
Read more here.


Blair Witch (2016)
the first Blair Witch was the father of found footage, so it only makes sense to retain the form. However, I’d argue that everything that worked about the original movie did so because of how it was filmed — that the cast had been put in that situation ‘for real’ and the filmmakers were fucking with them. It gave it all a rough plausibility, which is largely what made it scary. Conversely, this Blair Witch feels scripted and constructed from the off. That’s fine for most movies, even found footage ones, but here it stands in sharp contrast to how the original worked, and I think it undermines this movie.
Read more here.


The Girl with All the Gifts (2016)
we’re introduced to Melanie (Sennia Nanua), a young girl who sits in a concrete bedroom treasuring her photo of a kitten. Then soldiers enter and, at gunpoint, strap her to a chair, before wheeling her to a classroom with similarly restrained children. It’s just the beginning of a fantastic first act, full of atmosphere and intrigue as this world is rolled out before us. The less you know the better, though the chances of going in so cold that it’s a total mystery are sadly slim. If you’re intrigued enough already to check out the movie on my recommendation alone, stop reading now! Go watch it! If not…
Read more here.


Inferno (2016)
Inferno is a bit silly. Not utterly silly, but silly in the kind of way the previous Dan Brown movies have been silly — pretending they’re taking place in a plausible real world, when they’re not. The kind of silly where a villain leaves a trail of clues for someone to follow and make sure his scheme is executed, rather than, I dunno, putting a timer on it. The kind of silly where apparently the World Health Organisation is some international enforcement agency with gun-toting special ops units and the power to override local police.
Read more here.


Road Games (1981)
The film's low-budget roots and exploitation-derived genre tag may give the impression it’s a slasher movie or something, but nothing could be further from the truth. Rather, it could best be described as Rear Windscreen, because fundamentally it’s the same story: our hero spies on a guy from a distance because he thinks he saw him commit a murder, but is it all in his head? Where Hitchcock staged that impressively in a single confined location, writer-director Richard Franklin opens it up to the whole Australian outback.
Read more here.


Sully: Miracle on the Hudson (2016)
I liked Sully a lot while it was on. It’s well made (though sadly not available in its IMAX format for home viewing), Hanks is always watchable, the supporting cast are good too, and the headline incident is effectively staged, including the post-landing rescues. It’s a heartwarming story of real-life drama and heroism, with a punch-the-air-type moment when Sully is vindicated.
Read more here.


More next Sunday.

Saturday, 8 July 2017

TV

Pitch Battle
1x04 Episode 4
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

Films

'71 (2014)
[#95 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

Collection Count

Collection Count tracks my DVD/Blu-ray collection via a number of statistics every week.

At one point I thought this was going to be a quiet week... then loads of stuff turned up. There were three brand-new acquisitions; a Blu-ray box set that replaces three individual DVDs; and two DVD-to-Blu-ray upgrades where I'm yet to decide if I'm ditching or keeping my DVD copy (so those subtractions may happen next week).

That works out as changes to every stat:

Number of titles in collection: 1,996 [up 3]
Of which DVDs: 1,178 [down 3]
Of which Blu-rays: 818 [up 6]

Number of discs in collection: 5,116 [up 16]
Number of films: 2,215 [up 12]
Number of TV episodes: 7,799 [up 15]
Number of short films: 581 [up 15]

See you next week, faithful reader.

Friday, 7 July 2017

TV

Automata
1x01 The Neon Rose
1x02 Mice Plans
1x03 Confirmation Day
1x04 Anointed
1x05 Just Murder [season finale]
I'd love to point you towards where you can see this, but it's currently exclusive to its Kickstarter backers (like me!) It's good though. Impressive production values, likeable characters, decent story, interesting world being set up. I hope they get to do more.

Films

Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017)
[#94 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

Thursday, 6 July 2017

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Sunday, 2 July 2017

TV

Pitch Battle
1x03 Episode 3
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

Films

Big (1988)
[#91 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

this week on 100 Films

July has reached us this weekend, so it was time for 100 Films in a Year to look back at June...





There were also 3 brand-new reviews published this week...


Baby Driver (2017)
the main thing the film has attracted attention for is the driving. Done for real by stunt drivers with not a lick of CGI, that knowledge means it packs a viscerally real punch. But it’s not just snobbery: this is genuinely breathtaking action, slickly planned, masterfully performed, magnificently shot and edited. It’s this year’s Fury Road — a kinetic action spectacle made with skill rather than hand-waiving fast-cuts.
Read more here.


Dragon (Wu Xia) (2011)
when the action does kick in, it’s fantastic. With the combat directed by star Donnie Yen, these sequences are expertly and inventively choreographed dust-ups. It’s stylishly directed by Peter Chan — classy, but also thrilling, exciting, and sometimes innovative; and the whole is majestically shot by DP Lai Yiu-Fai
Read more here.


Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (2016)
When J.K. Rowling wrote the seven-book Harry Potter series, she didn’t just make it all up as she went along — it was well planned in advance. And she didn’t just envisage a seven-book story, either — she built a whole world, including a massive history that is only fleetingly referred to in Potter itself. It’s part of that history that the five-film Fantastic Beasts series is setting out to explore. (Despite sharing a title with a short tie-in book Rowling once wrote, Fantastic Beasts isn’t somehow an adaptation of that tiny tome, despite what some pithily moronic internet commenters who think they’re funny would believe.)
Read more here.


More next Sunday.

Saturday, 1 July 2017

TV

The Americans
5x13 The Soviet Division [season finale]

Doctor Who
36x12 The Doctor Falls [season finale]
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

Films

Transformers: Age of Extinction 3D (2014)
[#90 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

Collection Count

Collection Count tracks my DVD/Blu-ray collection via a number of statistics every week.

Five acquisitions this week, including two lovely multi-film box sets (Sinbad and Marx Brothers), a DVD-to-Blu-ray upgrade, and that rarest of things nowadays: a new purchase on DVD.

Number of titles in collection: 1,993 [up 4]
Of which DVDs: 1,181 [no change]
Of which Blu-rays: 812 [up 4]

Number of discs in collection: 5,100 [up 11]
Number of films: 2,203 [up 10]
Number of TV episodes: 7,784 [no change]
Number of short films: 566 [no change]

See you next week, faithful reader.

Wednesday, 28 June 2017

TV

The Americans
5x11 Dyatkovo

Films

Baby Driver (2017)
[#89 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (2009)
[2nd watch]
Rewatchathon 2017 #19... though it was my first time watching the so-called "Big Screen Edition", which is the Blu-ray version of the IMAX cut of the film: it's about 30 seconds longer and has two sequences in an IMAX aspect ratio.

Monday, 26 June 2017

Sunday, 25 June 2017

TV

The Americans
5x08 Immersion

Films

District 9 (2009)
[#88 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

Blindspot 2017 #6

this week on 100 Films

7 brand-new reviews were published to 100 Films in a Year this week, and they were...


10 Cloverfield Lane (2016)
We’ve all read reviews where a critic (or blogger!) will write something like, “it would benefit from being 10 minutes shorter”. That sounds very precise and therefore clever, but it’s really a number plucked from thin air. No one who’s written a sentence like that has actually sat down with a film, noted all the bits they’d cut, added them up, and then presented that total in their review. It is, at best, intuition (at worst, it’s random and thoughtless). However, with 10 Cloverfield Lane I can say exactly how much needs to be cut: 9 minutes and 10 seconds. To be exact, those’d be the 9 minutes and 10 seconds between a (spoilery) revelation and the credits rolling.
Read more here.


Moonlight (2016)
In telling the story of a young gay black man, Moonlight is exposing a world and lifestyle that’s not seen much, or at all, in (mainstream) cinema — that is, being black and gay. Or just being gay, really. Or black, to an extent. There’s an inherent positivity in getting such untold stories out into the open. Nonetheless, there’s a certain universality to Chiron’s experience.
Read more here.


Our Kind of Traitor (2016)
Some of Traitor’s detractors have a problem with it right from the off, finding the premise to be inherently ridiculous. I disagree. In fact, I think it’s quite a good plan on Dima’s part: to use an unsuspected casual acquaintance to smuggle important documents to the authorities. The way the MacKendricks continue to be involved does wind up stretching credibility, but that’s narrative structure for you — it’d be a real trick to construct a satisfying relay of perspective characters.
Read more here.


Space Jam (1996)
It is joyless. Not funny. Not clever. It’s just flat. The concept of character is nonexistent — no one has an arc. It wastes time on a subplot about a bunch of players who aren’t Michael Jordan. (I say “wastes time” — the whole thing’s a waste of time.) Bill Murray turns up for no apparent reason — did he need the money? Does he really love basketball? I don’t know. He brings some small joy just by being him. Elsewhere, there’s a grand total of one funny line.
Read more here.


Review Roundup
Quick reviews of 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi, Snoopy and Charlie Brown: The Peanuts Movie, and Young Frankenstein.
Read more here.


More next Sunday.

Saturday, 24 June 2017

TV

Doctor Who
36x11 World Enough and Time
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

The Persuaders!
1x10 Chain of Events

Pitch Battle
1x02 Episode 2
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

Films

The Great Muppet Caper (1981)
[#87 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

Collection Count

Collection Count tracks my DVD/Blu-ray collection via a number of statistics every week.

A couple of new additions this week, but really it's all about the monthly running time update. Yes, it's that time! And it's a pretty huge one -- the biggest in almost 10 months, in fact. A major part of that was getting all of Star Trek: The Original Series at the start of the month: it accounts for exactly 75% of this month's increase.

Number of titles in collection: 1,989 [up 2]
Of which DVDs: 1,181 [no change]
Of which Blu-rays: 808 [up 2]

Number of discs in collection: 5,089 [up 3]
Number of films: 2,193 [up 2]
Number of TV episodes: 7,784 [no change]
Number of short films: 566 [no change]

Total running time of collection (approx.):
377 days, 18 hours, and 10 minutes.
(Up 3 days, 19 hours, and 26 minutes from last month.)

See you next week, faithful reader.

Thursday, 22 June 2017

Sunday, 18 June 2017

TV

The Americans
5x03 The Midges

The Persuaders!
1x08 Take Seven

Films

The LEGO Batman Movie 3D (2017)
[#84 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

this week on 100 Films

This week it was time for 100 Films in a Year to review the past month's TV, including the first third of the new Twin Peaks, four new episodes of Doctor Who, and much more...





In regular business, there were 2 brand-new reviews...


New Tale of Zatoichi (1963)
With studio Daiei apparently realising they had a potential long-running series on their hands, blind masseur cum roving wrong-righter Ichi makes his colour debut in this third film. Despite the obvious visual change, New Tale picks up on plot threads from the previous film, concluding a trilogy of sorts that spans the series’ first three instalments.
Read more here.


Raiders!: The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made (2016)
It’s a great tale, but unfortunately it’s told in a really sloppily made documentary. The narrative is a complete jumble — it jumps in and out of stories all over the place, getting distracted by something else before looping back around. Exposition and setup are bungled, leaving the viewer constantly playing catch-up and trying to piece things together.
Read more here.


More next Sunday.

Saturday, 17 June 2017

TV

Doctor Who
36x10 The Eaters of Light
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

The Persuaders!
1x07 The Old, the New and the Deadly

Pitch Battle
1x01 Episode 1
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

Films

Mamma Mia! (2008)
[3rd watch]
Well, I half watched it. Pretty sure I've half-watched it before too, but I obviously didn't bother to log that.

Moonlight (2016)
[#83 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]
+ all the Blu-ray's featurettes

Collection Count

Collection Count tracks my DVD/Blu-ray collection via a number of statistics every week.

Including one thing that was supposedly dispatched at 6AM this morning and arrived here at 10AM (yeah, right), and not including one thing that was dispatched days ago and was due to arrive today but hasn't (weird).

Number of titles in collection: 1,987 [up 4]
Of which DVDs: 1,181 [no change]
Of which Blu-rays: 806 [up 4]

Number of discs in collection: 5,086 [up 8]
Number of films: 2,191 [up 4]
Number of TV episodes: 7,784 [no change]
Number of short films: 566 [up 5]

See you next week, faithful reader.

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Sunday, 11 June 2017

TV

The Late Late Show with James Corden in London
2x182 (6/6/17 edition)
2x183 (7/6/17 edition)
2x184 (8/6/17 edition)

this week on 100 Films

3 brand-new reviews were published to 100 Films in a Year this week, and they were...


Mr. Nobody (2009)
Jared Leto stars in this sci-fi drama about the last mortal on Earth reflecting on his life… or is it lives? Essentially, the film is an explanation or exploration of scientific theories realised as a character drama, using a nonlinear narrative to mix and contrast different timelines and realities. For some, this makes it a very confusing movie. That said, if you get the theories behind it, I don’t think it’s an especially complex film at all.
Read more here.


The Saint's Return (1953)
Although this was made years after the RKO films and by a different studio, it’s not a reboot or remake. Even allowing for those terms having become more applicable recently than they probably were in the ’50s, The Saint’s Return actually seems to be making a concerted effort to appear connected to the earlier series... It's even shot in a way that's reminiscent of the older films
Read more here.


Split (2016)
the really exceptional part of the movie is McAvoy’s performance. I don’t know how accurately or sympathetically the film handles the science of his character’s condition, but his embodiment of the role — of all the roles — is superb. The multiple distinct personalities aren’t created just by putting on a silly voice or funny costume; McAvoy changes the way he holds himself, the way he stands and moves, the way his face expresses. It’s the kind of performance that in a different kind of film would’ve been all over awards season.
Read more here.


More next Sunday.

Saturday, 10 June 2017

Articles

The Book of Jeremy Corbyn
by Anthony Lane (from The New Yorker)

Chances are you've heard about this somewhere else, but it's brilliant, so...

Collection Count

Collection Count tracks my DVD/Blu-ray collection via a number of statistics every week.

Nothing to report this week, mainly because I'm away -- there's probably some stuff sat on my doormat at home. There'll definitely be a few things next week.

Number of titles in collection: 1,983 [no change]
Of which DVDs: 1,181 [no change]
Of which Blu-rays: 802 [no change]

Number of discs in collection: 5,078 [no change]
Number of films: 2,187 [no change]
Number of TV episodes: 7,784 [no change]
Number of short films: 561 [no change]

See you next week, faithful reader.

Friday, 9 June 2017

TV

The Graham Norton Show
21x10 (9/6/17 edition)
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

Have I Got News For You
53x08 Election Special
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

Thursday, 8 June 2017

TV

Cowboy Bebop
1x25 The Real Folk Blues Part I
1x26 The Real Folk Blues Part II [series finale]

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Monday, 5 June 2017

Sunday, 4 June 2017

TV

Arrow
5x23 Lian Yu [season finale]
Oh look, everybody is definitely dead. I am sure there will be a whole new cast next season, then. Yes siree.

The Persuaders!
1x03 Five Miles to Midnight

Films

Gran Torino (2008)
[#78 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

What Do You Mean You Haven't Seen...? 2017 #6

this week on 100 Films

Yet another month of 2017 has passed us by, so it was time to look back at May on 100 Films in a Year...





As well, 5 brand-new reviews were published...


The Deer Hunter (1978)
The Deer Hunter was controversial before it was made (no American company wanted to touch it, leaving British group EMI to put up the initial funding), controversial when it was released (Peter Arnett, who won a Pulitzer for his coverage of the war, called the use of Russian roulette “simply a bloody lie”), and remains controversial today (Mark Kermode called it “one of the worst films ever made, a rambling self-indulgent, self-aggrandising barf-fest steeped in manipulatively racist emotion”), but is cited by some as one of the best movies ever made.
Read more here.


Underworld: Blood Wars (2016)
Kate Beckinsale is back in her role as a werewolf-killing vampire for the fifth entry in the Underworld series, which seems to be as undying as its star creatures... They seem to have made something of an effort to get back to the ‘world’ of the first film, with extravagant vampire covens and underground Lycan forces, while also growing the series’ mythology by introducing us to new areas of vampiredom, primarily a Nordic coven. This move also brings with it a degree of politicking among the vampires, which is kind of what I imagine a millennia-old secret society would be like. I mean, don’t expect House of Cards — it’s done at the level of the action B-movie this series is — but it’s kinda fun.
Read more here.


Plus a new review roundup that covered Charlie Bartlett, Florence Foster Jenkins, and Partners in Crime...





More next Sunday.

Saturday, 3 June 2017

TV

Doctor Who
36x08 The Lie of the Land
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

The Flash
3x23 Finish Line [season finale]

Who Dares Wins
10x06 (27/5/17 edition)
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

Films

The Muppet Movie (1979)
[#77 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

Collection Count

Collection Count tracks my DVD/Blu-ray collection via a number of statistics every week.

Six additions this week, thanks in part to some Amazon misprices I managed to jump on -- all of the original Star Trek for under £11? Yes please!

Number of titles in collection: 1,983 [up 4]
Of which DVDs: 1,181 [down 2]
Of which Blu-rays: 802 [up 6]

Number of discs in collection: 5,078 [up 29]
Number of films: 2,187 [up 2]
Number of TV episodes: 7,784 [up 87]
Number of short films: 561 [up 2]

See you next week, faithful reader.

Friday, 2 June 2017

Thursday, 1 June 2017

TV

Grantchester
3x06 Episode 6 [season finale]
[Watch it (again) on the ITV Hub.]

Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Films

A Matter of Life and Death (1946)
[#74 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

Blindspot 2017 #5

+ the 10-minute interview with cinematographer Jack Cardiff that is the DVD's only special feature. Why is there no extras-laden Blu-ray of this classic?!

Monday, 29 May 2017

Sunday, 28 May 2017

TV

The Persuaders!
1x02 To the Death, Baby

Films

Underworld: Blood Wars 3D (2016)
[#72 in 100 Films in a Year 2017]

+ the Blu-ray's special features, though they only amount to half-an-hour.

this week on 100 Films

3 brand-new reviews were published to 100 Films in a Year this week, and they were...


Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956)
A sci-fi thriller about a stealth alien invasion using human duplicates (clue’s in the title), this original film version of the oft-remade Invasion of the Body Snatchers is best not at genre-movie chills, but at evoking and commenting on paranoia and what causes it.
Read more here.


Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest (2006)
Here’s the first in an infrequent new series of posts, inspired by my 100 Favourites entries, which I’ll be using to plug some of the gaps in my review archive. As a good starting example, this is the only Pirates of the Caribbean film I haven’t reviewed.
Read more here.


Pirates of the Caribbean: Salazar’s Revenge (2017)
Dead men may tell no tales, but lucrative franchises never die, so Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean has taken to the high seas once again... Despite the unusually-long six-year gap since the previous film, and all the promotional talk of this being a fresh start for the series that tonally harks back to the standalone fun of the first movie, Salazar’s Revenge (or, if you prefer, Dead Men Tell No Tales) seems doomed to repeat bits and bobs from the series’ other instalments. It’s not a complete wash-out, however, because it at least executes some of those bits quite well. Sadly, other bits are beginning to look a little tired.
Read more here.


More next Sunday.