Sunday 7 June 2015


2x01 Episode 1
[Watch it (again) on ITV Player.]


Ladyhawke (1985)
[#78 in 100 Films in a Year 2015]

this week on 100 Films

A new month began during this week on 100 Films in a Year, so we begin with a look back at... wait a minute! I forgot to post the look-back at April! Right then:

And now, May too:

After all that, six brand-new reviews were published this week...

The Black Cauldron (1985)
an intriguing footnote in the history of Disney animation. Their 25th ‘official’ film, it was the first with no songs, the first to earn a PG, and flopped so badly they disowned it for over a decade. Fully-animated sequences were cut after disastrous test screenings for parents, and famed exec Jeffrey Katzenberg reportedly ordered 12 minutes cut, muddling the film’s story.
Read more here.

Hancock (Extended Version) (2008)
If you’ve only seen the humour-focused trailers, seeing Hancock described as a comedy-drama might come as a surprise. There’s a whole behind-the-scenes story here, it would seem... [they] thought they were making a character drama superhero movie, while studio executives were more interested in it being a superhero action-comedy... While the marketing went all-out on the comedy angle, the film itself is torn between these two pillars, leaving viewers with mismanaged expectations
Read more here.

Olympus Has Fallen (2013)
The first of Summer 2013’s “Die Hard in the White House” movies... The remarkable thing, watching both movies, is just how many plot beats are so similar. Even when they’re not exactly the same, they’re functionally identical. For example, a plane shoots up Washington merely as a distraction to get the President sent to the White House’s bunker; in White House Down, an explosion at the Capitol is staged merely as a distraction to get the President sent to the White House’s bunker.
Read more here.

Room 237 (2012)
Possibly-crazy people offer definitely-crazy theories on the subtextual meaning of Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining in this controversial film analysis documentary.
Read more here.

Violet & Daisy (2011)
plays like Tarantino with a metric tonne of Quirk slathered over it. On the bright side, it’s sort of entertaining, albeit fundamentally derivative with a sheen of left-field try-hard wacky-uniqueness.
Read more here.

White House Down (2013)
where your opinion is likely to land is most succinctly summed up in Film4’s review by Rebecca Davis: “Whether or not you enjoy this film depends entirely on whether you judge it to be po-faced or parody. If you believe it’s the former, you’ll probably hate it. If you believe it’s the latter, you’ll have an absolute blast.” I definitely judge it to be a parody... not an out-and-out Airplane-style parody, but very much a self-aware retro-styled tongue-in-cheek Action Movie.
Read more here.

Finally, there were six archive reviews republished too...

Capote (2005)
Philip Seymour Hoffman’s Oscar-winning lead performance dominates this movie... in and around the mechanics of the murder investigation and Capote’s work process, it’s the character of the man, and how it’s affected, that is really revealed to the viewer
Read more here.

Catfish (2010)
a documentary (probably -- we'll come to that) in which 20-something Nev falls in love with a girl somewhere else in America over the internet. He and his friends become suspicious that she's not who she claims and set off to find out The Truth. ...reflects our current relationship with social networking technology... how these tools are and can be used, and what effects this can have on human relations.
Read more here.

The Man in the Iron Mask (1998)
Wordy political intrigue tries to coexist with broad comedy which is squashed against swashbuckling adventure. The latter two could co-exist, but the film feels like it wants to be the former and so suffers for it. The comedy jars too much to be effective... It should at least be able to swash buckles effectively, but entirely fails to achieve this until the climax.
Read more here.

The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh (1977)
If some later Disney ventures have lost sight of the correct spirit for Pooh’s adventures, at least this original is a great adaptation. Bouncy, trouncy, flouncy, and, above all, fun fun fun fun fun.
Read more here.

The Naked City (1948)
Police procedural film noir, shot entirely on location in New York... The story is quite straightforward -- girl is murdered, police investigate -- but it exists mainly as a structure on which to hang perspectives of the city, its criminals and its law enforcement
Read more here.

New York Stories (1989)
Anthology of three shorts, connected only by the New York setting, directed by Woody Allen, Francis Ford Coppola, and Martin Scorsese.
Read more here.

More next Sunday.