Peter Rabbit Movie: Review

Peter Rabbit is a 2018 3D live-action/computer-animated comedy film based on the stories of Peter Rabbit created by Beatrix Potter. The film stars Domhnall Gleeson, Rose Byrne and Sam Neill, with the voices of James Corden, Daisy Ridley, Margot Robbie and Elizabeth Debicki.

James Corden seems to be the celebrity equivalent of Marmite – you either love him or you hate him. Personally I think he’s great and I love some of his previous works; Gavin and Stacey is still one of my favourite shows of all time! For me James Corden is absolutely fantastic as Peter Rabbit in his latest offering, and considering he just plays the voice of Peter Rabbit, he steals the show!

Overall the story is very simple, it follows the ongoing feud of Peter and his friends breaking into Mr McGregor’s garden whilst he tries to deter them. I was a little disappointed with this as I thought the story would follow more of an adventure, this does mean however it is easy for younger viewers to follow the story due to the lack of complication. There’s plenty of slapstick comedy as well which younger viewers always love and there are a few humorous moments for the adults as well. One of my favourites was when the fox, Mr Tod, did the ‘walk of shame’ the morning after a party in which his chest hair had been shaved off!

The animation is great for the most part, there are a few dodgy moments, in particular a fight scene between Thomas McGregor and Peter Rabbit, however for the majority, the animation and aesthetics of the characters is pretty flawless. Some of Peter’s friends look fantastic, in particular Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle who must be the most impressive animated hedgehogs I’ve ever seen – in fairness I think this is the only animated hedgehog I’ve ever seen! I would liked to have seen a lot more of the woodland critters in the film, but sadly there are only a couple of scenes which they are present which was disappointing as they feature so prominently in the Beatrix Potter books.

A lot of reviews have criticized the film, I have seen a number of comments saying that the film is an insult to Beatrix Potter, one in particular said the following “Listen carefully, and you can just about hear the sound of Beatrix Potter, turning furiously in her grave.” I think this is extremely harsh and unjust, Peter Rabbit has such a huge fanbase it was only a matter of time before he entered the world of film. In my opinion Sony do a grand job of appealing to a new generation of Peter Rabbit fans.

Go and watch, wait for the DVD or avoid altogether? – This is definitely a film which will appeal to the younger viewers, and with Easter coming up this could be the perfect film to take them to the cinema to watch!

Rating: 6.7/10

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The LEGO Ninjago Movie: Review

The Lego Ninjago Movie a 2017 3D computer-animated action comedy martial arts film produced by Warner Brothers based on the Lego Ninjago toy line. The film stars the voices of Dave Franco, Justin Theroux and Jackie Chan.

It feels like forever since I have done a movie review – even longer since I’ve done a new release! With a trip to Legoland Windsor this coming Saturday, I thought why not get in the mood and go and watch the latest instalment from the Lego franchise!

I loved the Lego Movie when it came out way back in 2014 and I dissapointingly didn’t get round to seeing Lego Batman so I had to make sure I watched Ninjago in good time. Prior to watching the film, I wasn’t too clued up on Ninjago however the premise was fairly straightforward – heroes, the ninjas, fighting against the villains.

What was so great about the Lego Movie was the witty humour and the vast number gags, not only for children but adults too. Lego Ninjago incorporates all of this to the very highest order and I’d go as far to say that the humour is better than that of the Lego Movie. Whether you are 6 years old or 60 years old, Lego Ninjago will definitely make you laugh.

Visually, the Lego Ninjago movie looks great! Obviously creating a Lego world and capturing the movements of Lego vehicles and figures etc is always going to be a different task to that of your standard animated film and in all honesty I thought the original Lego Movie was a bit clunky in its animation. However in the Lego Ninjago Movie, the animation is a lot more free flowing and visually does look great – I think this would be a great film to watch in 3D if you got the chance!

One part of the animation that did annoy however was the cat, Meowthra – a monster which wreaks havoc across the city of Ninjago. What annoyed me was how beautiful everything else looked and how the cat looked as if it had just been green-screened in! Whilst the gag was indeed funny, I think a little more time / money could have been invested to perfect this.

The plot starts off great and I really enjoyed the opening 30 minutes or so as the characters were introduced and the scene was set. However from here on out, I felt as if the plot became weak and the ending was very anti climatic. There had been a huge build up throughout the film to its ending and I was disappointed with its final sequences.

Go and watch, wait for the DVD or avoid altogether? – Overall, the Lego Ninjago movie is a very enjoyable and watchable film and despite the weak plot, the plethora of jokes more than make up for this.

Rating: 7.0/10

Hacksaw Ridge: Review

Hacksaw Ridge is a 2016 biographical war drama film directed by Mel Gibson starring Andrew Garfield as Desmond Doss. The film is based on a true story and focuses on the World War 2 experiences of American pacifist combat medic Desmond Doss who refuses to carry or use a firearm or weapon of any kind.

I really have had a poor year in terms of watching movies as soon as they are released at the cinema and way back in January I was eager to watch Hackshaw Ridge upon its release however I didn’t get round to it. I finally got round to watching it at the weekend and I was NOT disappointed!

I’m actually a big fan of Andrew Garfield, I feel as if he is a really talented actor and got hard done by with the response he got from playing Spiderman. In Hackshaw Ridge, I feel as if he has silenced his critics with a fantastic performance. Garfield plays Desmond Doss with ease and it really is a breath-taking performance from him, you feel so immersed in the film thanks to his performance.

Hacksaw Ridge is definitely one of those films that will stop and make you think about the bigger picture. Being based on a true story, it would be easy to just enjoy the film for the cinematic masterpiece that it is and not the story of heroics it is actually trying to portray. It’s fascinating to see war from the perspective of someone who was more focused on saving lives rather than taking them.

Cinematically the film is brilliant, some of the action sequences are brilliant, especially in the first couple of scenes where Hacksaw Ridge is first stormed by the American troops. The brutality was apparent from the first bullet fired and there were a number of moments which were reminiscent of Saving Private Ryan.

One thing that really did annoy me however, was the background in a couple of scenes during the film. There were a few moments where there appeared to be almost a green screen in the background portraying a scenic background, and whilst I have no issues with the use of a green screen, there were times in which the dodgy background was distracting me from the on screen action.

It was a lovely touch at the end of the film to include interviews with the actual Desmond Doss and his comrades, it was great to see the real hero behind the whole story.

To buy or not to buy? – This is definitely one of the best war films of the past decade or so and I would highly advise you watch it! Even if you’re not a fan of war films, Hacksaw Ridge is must watch film – so go watch it!

Rating: 8.4/10

Daniel Craig as Bond

So with Daniel Craig confirming that he will return to reprise his role as James Bond for a fifth film, I’ve decided to look back and rank his previous roles as Bond. *Please note I am solely focusing on Bond’s performance and not the whole film itself*

4. Spectre

Spectre seemingly looked to be Daniel Craig’s last outing as Bond and frankly if it had been his last outing I would have been disappointed because I felt as if Craig still had unfinished business as Bond. Out of the four films I feel as if this is the weakest ‘character’ – what I mean by this is in terms of character development of Bond it was the weakest, Craig’s performance was great as usual however. I just felt as if Bond had become too predictable and too similar to previous films. I also felt as if Craig’s character was a lot more reserved than what we had seen in previous outings and there were times where I felt as if the character could of just been any spy and not the infamous James Bond.

3. Quantum of Solace

Quantum of Solace is a fine example of some of Daniel Craig’s grittiest performances as Bond. Here we see how Bond really takes matters into his own hands and there are a number of examples of brutal and breathless this new Bond is. There are a number of scenes in which Bond goes AWOL and this a theme throughout the film. The only issue I have was how a lot of the time I didn’t understand the rational behind his actions, however this was perhaps down to the plot more than anything.

2. Casino Royale

Casino Royale was Daniel Craig’s first outing as Bond and if I’m honest, when I first watched it I wasn’t overly impressed. However having re-watched it a number of times since, I may have been too quick to judge. It was a huge task for anyone to step up and replace Pierce Bronan (who in my opinion is the best Bond of them all), and in fairness to Daniel Craig, he came in and completely revamped the whole James Bond franchise. I like how ruthless Bond is in Casino Royale and how Daniel Craig’s character brought a whole new style to Bond. Bond was always known as classy and elegant almost but with the introduction of Craig, Bond became more brutal and in my opinion, more realistic.

1. Skyfall

Skyfall is definitely my favourite of Daniel Craig’s performances as Bond. I love how there is a huge focus on Bond’s past and how the film shows that there is a lighter side to him, rather than just a cold blooded killer he actually shows compassion – evident lengths he goes to in protecting M. Skyfall is also where we see a real nitty gritty Bond which I enjoyed seeing, it gave a sense that he isn’t untouchable which is often suggested in a lot of action films with a male protagonist.

What do you think of Daniel Craig as James Bond? Let me know in the comments!

Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell No Tale: Review

After 6 years away from the big screen, Jack Sparrow is back in what is, in my opinion, one of the best Disney films in a long while! Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell No Tale is the fifth instalment in the Pirates of the Caribbean series. The story follows Jack Sparrow as he forges an uneasy alliance with astronomer Carina and Will Turner’s son, Henry Turner, as they voyage across the sea seeking out the legendary Trident of Poseidon. 

What I love most about this film is the villain, Salazar. Originally a Spanish Navy officer, Salazar sailed the seas hunting pirates until he was tricked by Jack and sailed into the Devil’s Triangle where Salazar and his crew became undead. Salazar is one of the best villains I think I have seen in recent years, he reminded me a lot of Darth Vader – how they both have such a huge onscreen presence and take absolutely no shit from anyone, killing anyone that gets in his way. He is definitely the scariest villain from the Pirates series and conveys his ferocity from the off. His crew is awesome as well, just as scary as Salazar and making for one very intimidating army.

I’m in two minds about the plot, I enjoy the whole concept of Will’s son searching for the Trident of Poseidon to get rid of Will’s curse makes sense and flows with the the rest of the series. However, what bugs me is how there has been no mention whatsoever of the Trident of Poseidon in any of the previous films, and whilst I understand about there being different ideas for different films etc, in all of the previous films everyone has acted as if the treasure which was in focus for that particular film is the greatest treasure of them all whereas in reality it appears that the Trident is. Hopefully in future films there will be less of a focus on the treasure and a differing storyline, perhaps more of exploration?

This is definitely a film for the fans of the Pirates series as there are a number of easter eggs dotted throughout, obviously with such a focus on attempting to clear the sea of all curses so that Will Turner can be free, shows that this film has more to do with 1, 2 and 3 of the pirates series rather than the fourth movie. I love how members of the original cast are retained in each film for example Gibbs and Scrum, which makes the film feel a lot more familiar, which helps after the considerable amount of time there has been between Worlds End and Dead Men Tell No Tale. The post credits scene was awesome as well – be sure to check back soon as I will be posting my thoughts on where the Pirates series is going following this!

The only disappointment I have with Dead Men Tell No Tale is the lack of ship battles! Ship battles are something we see in an abundance in the first three films however there was a disappointing lack of them for my liking in the latest two instalments. Sure there are plenty of battles in various locations in the film, however I loved seeing the firepower of the Black Pearl as it sails up to enemy ships and engages them in a battle to the death!

Go and watch, wait for the DVD or avoid altogether? – Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell No Tale is arguably one of the best in the series so make sure you go and give it a watch!

Rating: 8.5/10

A Dog’s Purpose: Review

A Dog’s Purpose is a 2017 American comedy-drama film based on the 2010 novel by the same name. It follows the multiple lives a dog leads and a dogs purpose in each of these lives, as the title suggests.

Marley and Me really did set the bar for emotional dog films. No film has really even come close to reaching its level, never mind bettering it. Unfortunately, A Dog’s Purpose isn’t quite up to that standard, however it is a highly enjoyable film!

Plot wise there isn’t a whole lot to say which isn’t in the trailer, we see a number of different lives one dog leads ranging from a German Shepherd Police dog to a an ice cream loving Corgi. The story is compelling mind, and it will definitely keep you engrossed throughout.

Lets be honest, A Dog’s Purpose isn’t going to break any box office records anytime soon, however it is a very watchable film which will take you through the motions. And if you are a dog owner yourself, this will definitely make you want to give your dog a huge cuddle when you get home as this film really does show how important dogs are in our lives.

Go and watch, wait for the DVD or avoid altogether? – A Dog’s Purpose definitely isn’t going to be up there as a contender for film of the year but it is a very enjoyable feel good film. If I was you then I would wait for the DVD.

Rating: 6.2/10

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2: Review

Guardians of the Galaxy 2 is the sequel to the 2014 hit and follows our favourite band of misfits on their adventures as they set out to protect the galaxy.

The Guardians of the Galaxy may just be my favourite gang of superheroes. Their bad ass outlook and the constant banter to and fro makes them some of the best characters in the Marvel cinematic universe. And if you enjoyed the first Guardians film, you’re going to love the sequel…

The film gets off to a flying start with the action starting from the off – this fast paced action carries on throughout with action all over! Not only do we visit more of the planets the Guardians protect, we also get to see even more of the varying inhabitants in the MCU – hopefully some of these will be revisited in later films.

The cast is just as impressive as ever and Chris Pratt continues to impress me with his performances. The onscreen chemistry is what really makes the gang so likeable, between Starlord and Rocket’s petty arguments and Drax’s no filter comments, this is quite possibly one of the funniest Marvel films to date.

The film ties perfectly into the MCU and I cannot wait to see the Guardians in future, Guardians 3 looks to be on the cards and with the cast set to appear in Avengers: Infinity War, Marvel look like they are in for a huge couple of years. 

Go and watch, wait for the DVD or avoid altogether? – Guardians 2 is a fantastic example of what Marvel do best and I would advise you to go and watch it before it’s too late!

Rating: 8.1/10