Tag Archives: review

Netflix Dare to Daredevil

demolidor-poster2303

The first thing you have to do when you make the plunge into Netflix portrayal of Marvels Daredevil, is stop asking the wrong questions. There is one purpose of this show and one alone – Entertainment. The show does not suggest accurate and ground breaking Scientific explanations and of course is not based on any sort of fact. Lets be honest, If every show or movie was attempted this we would have no Star Wars!

Forget the questions about how this blind man, can move around the city like a world champion Parkour free runner, and fight fifteen bad guys like he was the man who taught Bruce lee.

Lets take the concept of a typical Marvel comic meets small screen show, but then also take a little bit of “Suits” and “Law and Order”, Mash them with any of the “CSI” Series, and you have Daredevil.

I have just finished the first season of the series, and my girlfriend and I were hooked from Episode one. One of the key performances in the show is Vincent D’Onofrio’s portrayal of Kingpin, AKA Wilson Fisk. We have seen the type of character time and time again. The tough up bringing, the resulting child like nervousness around the new found love interest, and the “can’t stop myself” temper that when brought together make the perfect villain. But D’Onofrio’s ability reaches further than many.

When Heath Ledger portrayed the Joker in “The Dark Knight”, audiences were taken by his connection both with them and the dark depths of the character. The psychological illnesses of the character were evident, and at no point did you remember that Ledger was actually acting this part. For 152 minutes, he was the faceprint wearing, infamous clown resembling Joker.

D’Onofrio achieved something similar in this part. watching him convey the pain, heartache and at times regret, shine through his emotions and acting ability. He looks genuinely connected to these emotions, meaning even those who the him most will find it difficult not to find some room for sympathy for him, and at times question what his real motives actually are.

His performance at the character made me wonder if his intentions for his city were actually positive at the outset. Did he want the best for Hells Kitchen, and understood that in order to do this he would have to sacrifice his life to a life amongst criminals and danger. That the only way to rid the city of them is to become one, work with them to gain their trust, and then slowly turn them against each other and eliminate them one by one? . Maybe, he got caught up in the power, and similar to his temper, couldn’t stop. Therefore the only remaining option was survival. Who knows, but these thought are only considered as a result of the performance.

I would recommend that anyone that has put off the series because A. they didn’t like the movie ( there are a lot of you), B. Don’t tend to enjoy the Superhero Movies/Tv shows or C. Doesn’t have Netflix. I suggest you see past these reasons and watch. I didn’t have many high hopes for the show, but certainly do for Season two.

Blo88er

Recent Watch – “What We Did On Our Holiday”

What_we_did_on_our_holiday

I had never heard of this one. Never seen and advert, never heard it mentioned, then one night whilst trailing through Sky Movies, looking for something to watch we decided to take a gamble. We found a little pot of gold ..

In this family film, David Tennant plays Doug, a Scottish born father of three, living with his family in England. Having recently learned that their father Gordie, (Billy Connolly) has been diagnosed with Cancer and doesn’t have long to live, Doug and his brother Gavin (Ben Miller), arrange an evening with Gordie’s family and friends, to celebrate his life.

However, Doug and his family have something to hide and when Gordie takes the kids to the beach to allow the grown ups to set up for the party, chaos ensues.

The three children put in wonderful performances, and at times you question whether their ramblings are part of a script, or just the genuine observations a rambling child. Make sure you listen closely, as there is so many little remarks you could miss!

This a wonderful family movie, with lots of laughs, a little bit of craziness, with a few tears. It is sad to see wonderful and talented Billy Connelly, starting to show effects of his illness, however,  as always, he delivers a truly heartwarming performance, and reminds everyone of that special bond between a child and their grandparents.

What we did on our holidays is currently available on Sky Movies, to buy and Rent.

Give this one a go..

Blo88er

Give up tomorrow – “Paco Larranaga” – Netflix

2012-10-06-GUT_web_POV_Mini

I have an interest in documentaries, usually I will watch those in the crime genre, and within this, those that explore serial killers, murders and the court trials that follow. I just finished watching “Give up Tomorrow” on Netflix, a documentary that explores the prosecution of Juan “Paco” Larranaga, of murdering the Choing sisters on the 16th July 1997. He was convicted alongside seven others, however the film focuses mostly around Paco’s story.

I don’t have time this morning to go into all of the details within the film itself,and the arguments it proposes, you can watch the documentary for that, but what I can take time to say it convinced me… I strongly believe the innocence of the accused, and think the evidence is overwhelmingly in favour of his story.

There seems to be so many suspicious circumstances , from the behaves of the judge ( given that his closing statement opens by quoting how the media referred to the case, which would have had him thrown out of court here in the UK for being influenced by the media), to the character of Davidson Rusia, who confessed to the murder, and placing the others at the crime scene and guilty of the crime, who then walked free, only to have an unusual relationship with the deceased girls family, in particular the mother

The mother herself is an unusual character, Thelma Choing, who apart from the unusual sympathy she had for Rusia, has many other unconvincing traits and moments throughout the film.

The story is one of mass corruption, which is so plain to see to anyone watching the events, but we never see real justice being served. Why when everyone can see that Paco is innocent, has nothing really been done. This one opened my eyes to how remarkable corruption can be, that even when we know the level and outcome this led to, that no-one will stand up and doing anything about it.

Then again maybe I’m wrong. Maybe my mind has been corrupted by the documentary itself, maybe the director behind it needed a story and left out the concrete evidence. I don’t think so, not in this case. There is too much that supports Paco’s innocence.  But its an important consideration to make, as it is always possible. Never juts believe because the source appears to be reliable.

Either way.. I think he is innocent, and if that is the case, what a horrible and terrible crime. Pack will be 61 when he is due for release, he was 19 when convicted. He will have lost so many years of his life for nothing. How many other are there, that have either lost their lives or have not been allowed to live freely, for something they had no involvement in? .. its a frightening thought.

Have a watch, let me know what you think ..

Blo88er

Serial – The podcast that got me hooked

serial-social-logo

I usually read when I travel to work… but I go through phases when it comes to reading. For about a month I can go through multiple books, then the next month I loose interest.

At the start of this month I was having one of those can’t be bothered reading moments. So I had a think about an alternative. I remembered having listened to one or two episodes of “The Ricky Gervais Show”, a podcast where him and two of his friends sit and talk about the world and their views on it.

I then found a easy listening sports podcast called “Fighting talk”, basically a snippet of a radio show on BBC radio.

But I wanted something a bit different, something that stimulates some thought. So i downloaded a load of the “Top Rated” podcasts hoping something would pop up.

I found myself listening to the firs episode of a podcast called “Serial”. Originally I thought this was just a fictional audiobook, written by some crime novelist, also available in book stores… but it was much more.

Basically Sarah Koenig, a american radio personality hosts this series, which is an investigation into the 1999 murder of Hae Min Lee, in Baltimore, Maryland. The series explores the evidence, defence and prosecution of Adnan Syed, who was convicted for the murder.

Sarah explores all of the storylines, interviewing Adnan and many of those involved or around on the day of the killing, and the podcast itself bring serious questions about the truth in the case.

I am about half way through the series just now, but would urge everyone to give this a listen. I will no doubt blog some more about my own thoughts on the case and the podcast itself, but want to reach the end before I do so, to ensure I’ve heard the lot.

One day I believe Adnan is innocent, the next I don’t buy his story.

Give it a listen..

Blo88er

Recent Watch – “The Interview”

The_Interview_2014_poster

Its one of the most controversial movies of all time, certainly in more recent years. So far that North Korea requested the movie be cancelled and never released, in a much less polite manner, I may add. I decided that I had to see what all the fuss is about, having seen a few “Rogen and Franco flicks”, I know these can be somewhat outrageous,.. yes “This is the End” i’m talking about you.

I initially felt robbed, the way the movie introduced the North Korean leader caught me by surprise, and he was depicted as a man just hugely misunderstood. I wondered what all of the fuss was about.. It didn’t last. He soon became the eccentric and power hungry leader that we see in the news, and I can see why he was slightly pissed about the way the film portrayed him, as well as the way in which they killed him off.

The film has some good laughs and Franco plays a slightly self obsessed, and eccentric chat show host, which  delivers some of the most memorable lines from the movie.

I didn’t laugh just as hard as I expected though, which was the feeling shared by the company I was in. However, about a week later, the movie came up in conversation, and we started to rhyme off some of the lines from the movie, which did lead to much laughter and more discussion.

This is the kind of film it is, one of the movies you watch, you enjoy, but you feel guilty and not enjoying s much as you felt you should have. This is solely down to the hype of others who viewed it before you, and the huge influence the media has had over its release.

Nevertheless, I do think back to it now, and can appreciate some of the classic lines that the movie delivered. Its worth it for that.

For me the film is far from the level of Superbad and the first time I watched The Hangover, but it does have a few of those lines that just get you every time.

Blo88er

A round of applause – Hugh Laurie

hugh-laurie

I just finished a quick review on the film “Her” starring Joaquin Phoenix, in which I mentioned the actors ability to connect with his audience on a real and emotional level.

I have also recently become hooked to the first season of TV series “House”, starring Hugh Laurie. the huge success of this series, with 8 seasons in total, owes very much of its praise to the man behind Gregory House. Laurie is exceptional at portraying the damage and disabled, diagnostician, who’s best known for his quick but insulting wit. He is hugely sarcastic and extremely smart, and is perceived initially as somewhat of an arrogant, uninterested skiver.

As we get to know House, we start to realise there is much more to the man than initially thought, and that his intentions are indeed selfless. There are so many layers to the man, and I believe it is the Character Hugh Laurie was made to play. The sympathy we feel for a man who is nothing but insulting most of the time, is a difficult connection for an actor to achieve, but no matter how horrible he is, you can’t help but love him and share his pain.

The writers are also worthy of an applause, given the type of series house is, it is commendable that the writers have managed to keep producing story lines for house and the gang, considering the amount of research that must be involved.

This is a terrific series, and everyone should give it a go at some point, even if this is only for the brief few minutes per episode that we see house have to suffer his “clinic hours”, which brings about some of the most witty humour the small screen has ever seen.

All 8 seasons currently available on Netflix.

Blo88er

Recent watch – “Her”

MV5BMjA1Nzk0OTM2OF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwNjU2NjEwMDE@._V1_SX640_SY720_

Have you ever watched a film starring an actor who plays a part so well that, for 90 minutes you start to believe is real, and you genuinely believe the joy and heartache that the character experiences in that short time ?

Director Spike Jonze released “Her”, a futuristic love story, in December 2013. He cast Joaquin Phoenix as “Theodore” a somewhat lonely writer, who discovers a new world upon purchasing a newly released operating system, that, after a few quick questions, designs itself to be your perfect OS.

Imagine apples ‘Siri”, but sometime into the future, and you have Samantha, Theodore’s perfect matching OS. The story line is good, although many question whether the performance of the OS is actually realistic, the movie certainly delivers entertainment on a plot that I myself questioned would hold my attention.

The movie proves that relationships rely on so much more than physical aspects and shows the audience a full example of the ups and downs of a relationship. The script is good, but the cast is the best part ..

Scarlett Johansson provides the vocals of the OS, and to be honest, she sounds like every mans perfect woman. Joaquin Phoenix portrays that damaged, lonely character so well, you can’t help but ooze sympathy for him, share his happiness in those joyful moments. You want things to work out for him.

Once a film connects with you at that level, you know its going to be a winner.

If your looking for something a bit different, and can cope with a minute or two of extreme awkwardness, give this one a go. But please, approach with an open mind.

Blo88er

Recent Read – The Humans

the-humans

I recently finished reading “The Humans” by Matt Haig. In the beginning.. I didn’t like it.. I read what the book was about, I got an idea in my head of what I wanted the book to be like, and out of its 294 pages, the first 270 odd never done it for me. I continued to read in the hope the book would pick up.

The plot is based around a man named Prof Andrew Martin, whom after an incident one evening, finds himself no longer enjoying and accepting basic human life, but instead struggling to comprehend how and why we live. Therefore he starts to view our world as if as an alien, having never experienced our world first hand..

I felt at times as if I had picked up a book that had been incorrectly placed in the adults section of Waterstones book shop.

However, around page 271, near the end of the book, Prof Martin lists, all the things he has learned about human life since that peculiar night and it is at this point the book finally started to meet my expectation. I finally found some food for thought.

He questions everything – and advised we should too, in point number 6.

“Be curious, question everything. A present fact is a future fiction”. He then goes on to do so..

At one stage in the book he considers the mathematical probability of human existence, before the big bang (or any other possible theory of our existence). This is one of my favourite lines in the book, point 13 –

“You shouldn’t have been born, Your existence is close to impossible as can be. To dismiss the impossible is to dismiss yourself.”

Its something to think about. The odds of us existing are near impossible, so why do we so easily dismiss other things because we have been told they are also near impossible.

Another point the Prof raised is point 14.

On Average ” your life will have 25,000 days in it. Make sure you remember some of them.”

Think quickly now, of the days you have lived so far, how many can you remember and for what reason. Eliminate the bad ones, and the reasons you have for remembering these days, is how you want to try and live moving forward. The more days you can remember the better your life may have been.

Another suggestion, that is relevant to so many people I meet on a daily basis is that in point 15.

“The road to snobbery is the road to misery, and Vice Versa”.. This one is self explanatory.

One of my favourites is point 29.

“If there is a sunset, stop and look at it. Knowledge is finite. Wonder is infinite.”

Remember to live, and don’t mis the opportunity to experience real life. This leads to point 46.

” Things you don’t need to live – books, art, wine, cinema and so on – are the things you need to live“.

Things that truly have the ability to make us happy are a key theme of this list, and this is put quite bluntly in point 66.

“As a black hole forms it creates an immense gamma-ray burst, blinding whole galaxies with light and destroying millions of worlds. You could disappear at any second. This one, Or this one. Or this one. Make sure as often as possible, you are doing something you’d be happy to die doing.”

I think this one is important, because I think its human nature, to take on heavy workload, to get caught up in things like our work, in which we forget that thats all they are. They are not our entire life, they are but a small part of a very, very long lifetime, they should only be treated as such. Remember whats most important, and give your time to it.

I think point 77 appears random, but when you think about it, its important in current times, and links with the points above

“When you watch the news and see members of your species in turmoil, do not think there is nothing you can do. But know that it is not done by watching the news.” Again, this one explains itself.

In the end I was relieved that I made the decision to finish this book. Matt Haig brings about some philosophical thoughts come the end of the novel, which is exactly what I had been looking for. There are 97 in the list, most relating to an experience from the story itself. It wasn’t until I got until the end, I realised what I had been reading. The books is kind of like an outsiders guide to basic human life and existence. Not to complex and in most parts not over simplified. Just enough to get you thinking, and to start valuing the things that matter…

In the end .. I kind of loved it.

Blo88er

Poll 1 – What is the Best DiCaprio Movie ?

He’s my favourite actor, and is continually releasing box office hits. But, which is his movies do you think is best ?

Here are 10 possibilities, but if you think its another, leave  comment.

1. Wolf of Wall Street-  

2. The Great Gatsby – 

3. The Titanic           – 

4. The Departed      – 

5. Inception             – 

6. Shutter Island –    

7. The Beach – 

8. Gangs of New York – 

9. Blood Diamond –   

10. J. Edgar – 

Best Comedy Characters Of All Time

GENIE – ALADDIN

256px-Genie5

Everyones favourite character from the aladdin films. He makes the kids laugh but loves to throw in a discreet laugh for the adults. Voiced by the late, great Robin Williams, one of the best Disney creations of all time.

THE MINIONS – DESPICABLE ME

BQelWO5CcAAsUm7

One of the main attractions to the hit films, the minions are simply comedy genius. Hundreds of little yellow henchman whose sole purpose is to assist the worlds most ambitious villains. Rumoured to have served under T-rex, Genghis Khan and Dracula, these little mischievous lot will soon have their own motion picture, which will no doubt be a hit.

OLAF – FROZEN

Frozen-image-frozen-36065985-500-313

Although slightly underused in the movie, Olaf provides all of the laughs in the movie. With lines such as “Hey, Sven? Not sure if this is gonna solve the problem, but I found a staircase that leads exactly where you want it to go.” You have to listen carefully to catch some of his lines, however many look forward to his return in the rumoured short film sequel.

ERIC CARTMAN – SOUTH PARK

200px-Eric_cartman

Rude, offensive and sometimes borderline illegal, Cartman pushes the boundaries of television humour as far as they can go. Sometimes you just can’t help yourself from letting out a laugh.

ROSS AND CHANDLER – FRIENDS

Ross-and-chandler

The most common asked TV related question of the 90s, “who is your favourite friends character?”. Impossible to pick just one, both ross and chandler are the comedy genius behind much of the show, chandlers quick wit sarcasm and Ross’s little temper tantrums never fail to get you hooked on episodes you have watch many many times.

OFFICER CRABTREE – ‘ALLO ‘ALLO

60b1d6fa83e3b6ba2e2103db8b195509

“Good Moaning” one of the most popular and simple lines of its time. Officer Crabtree would have just played a normal part if it wasn’t for the deliberate poor attempt at the french accent. Arthur Borstrom portrayed the character perfectly and it becomes difficult to look at him without smirking.

LANCE CORPORAL JONES – DADS ARMY

722496-dad-039-s-army

One of my favourites of all time, Jones is the over enthusiastic, a little too old but very dedicated member of the platoon. His tales of the Sudan and reference to the enemies they faced there not “liking it up them” gets me every time. Just comedy gold.

ALAN – THE HANGOVER

alan-hangover2

Just look at the picture above, and think of all of the outstanding lines this character delivered.

SHELDON COOPER – THE BIG BANG THEORY

sheldon-cooper-wrong

“Bazinga” – The extremely intelligent, but socially useless physicist constantly patronises and fails to understand sarcasm. We all know someone just like Shelly.

GONZO AND RIZZO – THE MUPPETS

muppetchristmascarol_commentary3

The two best buds that always find themselves in trouble. They always provide laughter in-between the meaningful topics raised in the muppets. Often a good duo when it comes to the sing songs.

TIMONE AND PUMBA – THE LION KING

timonandpumbaa

Hakuna Matata – The slug eating pair guide Simba on his journey and guide the viewer through their own version of events in The lion King 3, a clever and hilarious sequel from Disney. I wish they would do this on more movies.