Check out our movie review on youtube here if you want a more in depth look at this one, but all I will say is like any movie adapted from a well loved book, this one was always going to divide opinion, especially when it diverts from the book quite substantially.
This was certainly not made to be a movie for the book lovers themselves as quite a lot of the plot and moments were either left out, or in some cases, changed completely for the adaptation to the big screen. I can forgive it for many of these myself, despite loving the book, because some of those moments would have, for me, fell completely flat while watching. But did it divert a little too far away from its source material? My nerdy compatriot JB certainly felt so, who was more than a little disappointed with the outcome. I saw this movie slightly different however, and throwing my opinions of whether the book is better or not out the window, I was more than happy immersing myself into the Oasis on screen.
All in all I was allured by the sheer excitement and pace of this movie, it was gripping and fun and my was it pretty to look at. More easter eggs from movies/games of years gone by than you could probably take in one viewing, will lead this to being rewatched a lot by most I imagine, and perhaps the biggest compliments are coming for Spielberg. Many outlets reporting this as a return to form from those big beloved blockbusters of old he has conjured over the years. This was a big ball of fun designed to appease the non-reading masses, tapping into game culture quite marvelously while seamlessly splitting between real life and a game graphics concept that could easily have bombed if not done right. Anyway, as previously mentioned more debate can be found on this here in our video review on you tube!
12 Strong - 6 out of 10
A good 'once-through' of this is probably all it will need. It's hardly spectacular but still provides some decent action to warrant a one time viewing. This movie has Chris Hemsworth in his stereotypical hunk hero style role, as a captain leading a specialist forces unit, the first to engage in Afghanistan after 9/11.
Hemsworth is OK and the supporting cast, including Michael's Shannon and Pena, provide OK support but this one is a pretty paint by numbers war film, which really is overtly pro-war America following on from the tragedy of the twin towers! If you want a film to shut off the brain for a bit, this will do nicely but it's hardly up there with a Hacksaw Ridge or Dunkirk.
Paterno - 6 out of 10
Usually anything with Al Pacino in will peak my interest, but add in to that the subject of him being a football coach hankering back to films such as 'Any Given Sunday' and I was all in on this, despite it being far trickier subject matter than your average American Football movie.
For those not familiar with the story surrounding Penn State's most successful coach Joe Paterno, he was heralded as one of the greatest coaches in college football history, winning more games than anyone else, a quite remarkable 409 career wins, but sadly a dark twist to the tale focuses on a child sexual abuse scandal, which occurred right under his nose and a cover up designed to hush the victims for the benefit of the successful sports programme.
It's a very interesting true story, sadly not particularly well presented and even Pacino fails to flatter in his usual form, as coach Joe Pa. Again, I would probably say this would be a decent enough viewing 'once-through' but unlike the brilliant 'Any Given Sunday', watching this on one Sunday would surely be enough!
I Kill Giants - 5 out of 10
Wasn't all that sure what to expect from this latest comic book adaptation movie but again I have to say what I witnessed really didn't inspire me to much. A lot of this movie just felt so so slow, I didn't feel too engaged with the lead girl Barbara, played by young Madison Wolfe, and I have to say the film would have hinged on that connection to make it a success.
Something about the character I just couldn't warm to. What some would perhaps love of her loner-style-sass, I felt it came across as quite-annoying-teen! Imogen Poots is probably the best thing about this film playing the struggling motherly sister of Barbara, she brings a genuine performance out of a fairly dull script, not even the attempted tug of the heart strings toward the end was enough to truly bring this one out of its slumber and the effect of the scenes involving giants really didn't excite either.
So all in all, your basically just killing a dull ponderous hour and a half watching this one!
All the Money in the World - 7 out of 10
Based on the true story of the kidnapping of 16 year old billionaires grandson John Paul Getty III in 1973, this film focuses on his quite bizarre and eccentric grandfathers reluctance to pay the ransom for his own flesh and blood.
Mark Wahlberg and Michelle Williams provide great performances but it is the portrayal of Jean Paul Getty by 88 year old Christopher Plummer that really makes this a decent watch. This role was to be played by Kevin Spacey originally before his recent scandals and although it is reported he brought something completely different to the role, I am delighted we got to see this performance by Plummer, who I think in hindsight playing the 80 year old Getty gave far more realism to the role than Spacey could have at the tender age of 58!
Director Ridley Scott delivers suspense and the subject of greed argued throughout in a pretty enjoyable flick, which will have you reaching for the Wiki pages to learn more of the real story.
The Greatest Showman - 7 out of 10
Michelle Williams is on duty again for this next film, this time for a fun musical in which she co-stars with Wolverine, Hugh Jackman. Jackman is back to his theatrical roots with this one, belting out tunes, dancing throughout with his energy enlightening the role. Through the delightful tunes is the story of the creation of the circus as we know it, the world famous Barnum circus (later known as Ringling Bros), which ran from 1871 to 2017 under the banner of the greatest show on Earth.
Not everyone loves musicals and I get that, they are hardly my favorite genre either but sometimes the songs and the movie go beyond the realms of a normal standard musical and provide a film I think the average movie fan can watch, and this is one of them. Jackman is fantastic throughout and Zach Efron also puts in a decent shift alongside. The true hero is the standard of the tunes, not quite La La Land sublime but this will cater far more for families of all ages!