#BigRonFilmReviews: Reblogged

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Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)
A Captain America take on a kind of Enemy of the State meets Tinker, Tailor, Soldier Spy movie with the usual sass, style and banging about we expect from these modern Marvel productions. And I really enjoyed it.
The plot is engaging, the espionage stuff works and they’ve done really well continuity-wise, especially considering it’s a sequel set 70 years after the first. That said the twists are fairly obvious and Toby Jones feels a little shoehorned in.
Plenty of stuff to enjoy, they beat the 95 year old Cap drum well and look out for the excellent Mission Impossible moment that made me smile.
Chris Evans makes a good cap, Scarlet Johansson has more to do than in previous movies and and being ScarJo is rather brilliant. Anthony Mackie’s Falcon is a nice addition and Robert Redford continues the Marvel tradition of never trust a bloke in a suit.
When it does descend into smashy, bangy, runny, jumpy stuff its big its bold and explosion heavy (which I understand the kids dig) and I wasn’t as bored as I have been with that kind of thing - Zack Snyder take note.
I like the superhero stuff and this is up there with the best of the stuff we’ve seen before. (well not the Dark Knight Rises that of course stands alone),
“I do what he does. Only slower”
“Well, all the guys in my barbershop quartet are dead. So no, not really.”
“Before we get started, does anyone want to get out?”
"On your left".
"When do we start?"


Transformers: Age of Extinction (2014)

Caught this trail whilst waiting for Noah last night…… Sorry Marky Mark but this looks appalling. I think i’ll wait for DVD or maybe even TV….


Noah (2014)
Or Lord of the Noah: Return of The Rocklords as it might have been titled.
Here we have Darren Aronofsky’s vision of the bible story. It took some effort getting into see this, really not my bag but having forced myself into the theatre I pretty much enjoyed it. Pretty much.
The representation of Noah as a a fallible man suffering the torment of a crisis of faith is absolutely spot on. Do we need rockmonsters? Probably not. Did we need übercockney Ray Winston as the personification of Darkness and Evil to contrast the light? Possibly not.
Its a crazy portrayal of a miraculous story (sorry i’m not sure story is the right term but i’ll persist). I guess the important thing is that the message of the tale is not lost, far from it, so I guess the artistic license (ab)used is acceptable. I mean what do I want humble retelling? Hardly.
The creation sequence is excellent, the eco message obvious and apparently this is how I like my bible stories but i’m unlikely to ever revisit.
"He’s going to destroy the Earth".

The Counselor



I understand there is a question of ethics when one attempts to review a film after having not watched the picture in its entirety, which is what I am attempting to do right here, right now. However, I hope that by stating this dilemma at the forefront of this post, it will help absolve me of…

Yep woeful movie


Divergent (2014)
I wasn’t expecting much from this but it’s not too grim - in a derivative, contrived and cheesy formulaic kind of way.
Set in a desolate, post apocalyptic Chicago. Society has separated into five factions: 
Cool Punky Tattooed Kids
Blazer wearing Boffs
The Amish
Something about truth-tellers that doesn’t seem important (but probably will be…)
Ones destiny is determined by a glorified sorting hat but not everyone wants to be in Slytherin - you get the idea. Our Heroin is one such kid, a Divergent. As is the way in these dystopian societies human nature tends to find away and insurrection begins.
There’s some decent stuff in here. The girl kind of grows on you and i’m always a fan of any kind of training regime (plus the obligatory montage). There are a few twists and surprises that are telegraphed yet still fulfilling. Anyone that’s been to Chicago will also enjoy some well used landmarks, Navy Pier, The Sears Tower and lots of the ‘L’ train.
The Black and White character types are none too subtle and the movie certainly drills home the “we’re all different” point. Theo James takes the brooding a little too far but i’m sure it’ll work for the target audience.
I quite liked this but was coached by having heard some other reviews. Had I rocked up cold the premise of this segregated society may well have lost my interest.
The Twilight and Hunger Games fanbase will probably dig this.
“I don’t want to be just one thing. I can’t be. I want to be brave, and I want to be selfless, intelligent, and honest and kind. Well, I’m still working on kind”.
“Why does everybody keep saying that?”
“Fear doesn’t shut you down, it wakes you up”

Nebraska (2013)
Yes, yes, yes! I knew you could do it Alex. 
Historically I have a strange relationship with Alexander Payne films. I like the idea of them, I dig elements of them, I enjoy performances in them and I buy into style of them. But I seldom enjoy the entire piece. (I feel the same way about Ben Wheatley incidentally)….. This movie however, this is right on the money. 
The broader plot is around a crazy old man on a mission to collect a fake million dollars in a postal scam but what this is really about is growing old, regret and Father & Son relationships. I think.
No tricks of the camera, no cgi, not even colour just fantastic writing and everyday scenarios. It’s all about the dialogue and the interactions. The stuff around the relatives, the graveyard and his ex business partner is superb. Not gag ridden per ce but situationally amusing and I giggled a lot.
However it’s not all laughs. There is some expert craft on display here, when Payne wants to he flashes a deeper meaning, a hint of sadness, of an alternate happier life without ever straying into overly melodramatic sentimental Gouda. 
Great performances from all, Bruce Dern is excellent as the slightly sozzled and confused old man with a good heart, MacGruber does an excellent straight man and June Squibb is in scene stealing form.
I loved this, it could well have made my 2013 list if i’d seen it in time.
“You know beer. You just rent the stuff”.
“I’m not trusting the mail with a million dollars!”
“Are we still having sex?”.
“Beer ain’t drinking”.
“Of course they’re my teeth. Don’t be a moron!”
“Cos I like to screw, and your Mother’s a Catholic”
“Grabbed a handful of boob and Woody was right there and didn’t have a clue, did ya Woody?”

Dom Hemingway (2013)
A derivative cockney gangster romp. A twist of Sexy Beast, a pinch of Layer Cake a twist of maybe Trainspotting and with the excessive boozing and Richard E Grant you can’t help but think there’s some Withnail and I in here too but this is actually more of a family drama.
Jude Law is fresh out of Prison and seeking his silence money from a Russian cartoon mobster in Demian Bechir. But after a few crazy antics he realises what he is really seeking.
I guess its a character driven piece an underlying commentary on the Fatherhood. Jude Law is given the opportunity to cut loose and deliver a plosive, boozy, sweary homage to Brian Blessed with added anger - which despite myself I did rather enjoy. Richard E. Grant is an enjoyable presence, no stretch for him here however, he’s kicking out his suave Richard E. Grant performance.
It’s a boozy romp with some added violence and passes the cunt test with flying colours but it’s not overly fulfilling.
“You fucker! My betrothed. You’re nothing but a pestilence, an uphill gardener with a weak chin”.
“He was raised in a Russian orphanage and kills people for a living. Of course he has a well-stocked bar.”

Captain America - The First Avenger (2011)
Weird big head on small body! Weird big head on small body! Weird big head on small body!
A guy with a warriors heart and a frail body can’t get into the Army until he’s genetically engineered to become an All American Hero. His main enemy is Hugo Weaving’s Red Skull who unfortunately reminds me of of the Nazi guy from ‘Allo ‘Allo. 
After some singing and dancing this becomes a CGI action romp with a few nice characters on both sides, Toby Jones and Stanley Tucci are clearly having fun and Tommy Lee Jones roles out his Men in Black performance.
All the tie ups and lead ins for the Avengers, Iron Man’s Dad and that weird Tesseract thing from Thor are well handled and more obvious on rewatch. The Stan Lee cameo is decent. This one has it’s place in the Marvel universe but i’d hope for more in the next one.
"I am looking for qualities beyond the physical".
"He’s still skinny".
"I’m from Fresno Ace!".
"I thought he’d be taller".
"Lets hear it for Captain America!".

By the way guys…..


….. due to tumblr inadequacies this is just my reblog site if you want stuff earlier you should be hitting up 



Better Living Through Chemistry (2014)
Pharmacy owner Sam Rockwell’s life takes a turn for the worst (or perhaps the better?) when he gets caught up in a hazy web of sex drugs and murder….
This is voyage of self discovery movie of sorts and does have it’s moments.. i’m always a fan of a drugs related meltdown and this has just that. The journey from browbeaten pillar of the community to drug addict planning a murder trying to dodge the DEA is enjoyable enough.
The tone is light and it looks like everyone was having a lot of fun making it. Rockwell is on good form as the hapless star whilst the abrasive Michelle Monaghan character made me smile and Olivia Wilde appears to be channeling Stifler’s Mum.
The Jane Fonda narration doesn’t work and really took me out of the movie a couple of times but I found this inoffensive enough.
"You’d change your tune too after being balls deep in a woman like Elizabeth".
"She taught him how to fuck!".
"You mean reverse Cowgirl?".
"Golf is fucking stupid!".
"Anyone can take a pill, but only a pharmacist knows how to make one".

The Legend of Hercules (2014)
Gah! Two turkeys in a row! How did this get a cinematic release? This absolutely reaks of piss poor tv movie!
Aping the 300 movie model we’re back in the Greek Mythology wheelhouse. The 300 movies have a certain super stylized charm, this has a worse plot, inferior cast, lower production values and smells of cheese. 
Its s a kind of Hercules origin story starring one of the also rans from the Twilight movies,. A guy that should spend more time at acting classes and less time in the Gym. Think revengey, questy mess of of hacking, spinning, stabbing and nonsense.
With it’s überdramatic “you will think this now” score, woody acting, hideous script and bad cgi this edges, on occasion toward the “so bad it’s good zone” but it probably remains in “so bad it’s bad territory”.
Watch Percy Jackson, 300 or wait for The Rock’s version instead. This is a far, far, far, far, far worse film but I still enjoyed this more than Under The Skin.

A Field in England...... Retraction!



I watched Ben Wheatley’s A Field in England for a second time last night, under very different circumstances. Most importantly, with clearer audio and having not just had a long and annoying day of work. I’m currently on vacation. Fuck work! Work is for hosers!

Anyways, I had an entirely…

Well definitely fuck work!

I may give this another try. I currently think Wheatley is brilliant but am yet to LOVE one of his movies


Nymphomaniac: Volume I (2013)
Ergh, i’ve just paid £10.99 to rent these movies on Blinkbox. Self indulgent bullshit.
I do not enjoy LVT movies, I am aware you probably aren’t supposed to. I should perhaps appreciate his craft and skill. I do not. This is another movie where art, boundary pushing and shock tactics replace decent narrative, enjoyment or intelligent character interplay.
The framing device is a sex addict played by LVTs regular muse Charlotte Gainsbourg is found battered and bruised in an alleyway by a benevolent Stellan Skarsgard and begins to recant her varied and explicit sexual exploits. 
Cue mucho nudity, erect penises, prosthetic vaginas etc in graphic scenes of bumming, blow jobs on trains, and of course straight up sex.
It’s awful, I don’t get it, just watch porn if you want to watch this kind of stuff.
At least nobody mutilated their genitals quite so badly nor spent the whole move staring at the fucking moon!
"He shoved his cock inside me and humped me three times".
“Would it be alright if I show the children the whoring bed? After all, they also have a stake in this event”.

Nymphomaniac: Volume II (2013)
Yeah, more of the same. There is a threesome with a couple of african guys, still no genital mutilation but some bondage with Billy Elliot and at one point they stole some spoons from a restaurant - the only moment of what is now two movies I have enjoyed.
Please see yesterday’s review of part one for further comments.
Waste of £10 and some three and a half hours - although for at least 3 hours of that I have been daydreaming/texting/looking at the floor/wishing I was dead.
Crap, crap, crap ,crap…. crap. 
"It was important that I have a Caesarian. I mean I was hoping that my fucking cunt was going to work again".
"Fill all my holes!"
"I want your cock!"

Favorite Films Recap #30-21


Head here for the entire running list, including the the reasons I love these films. 


#30 - Nashville (1975)

#29 - Pee-wee’s Big Adventure (1985)

#28 - Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011)

#27 - Mean Streets (1973)

#26 - Fargo (1996)

#25 - The King of Comedy (1982)

#24 - The Evil Dead (1981)

#23 - Boogie Nights (1997)

#22 - Take Shelter (2011)

#21 - No Country for Old Men (2007)


Is there anything in this set that would make your personal Top 10?

Edging ever closer to the top 10 now

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