Category Archives: Films and television

Thomas Tank Engine – Indian characters

Thomas the Tank Engine are adding 14 new characters to the sleepy railway of Sodor to diversify the cast.

Mattel have unveiled a fantastic array of offensively politically correct trains representing cultures around the globe.

My personal favourites are Ashima and Rajiv from India; although I think Mattel missed a trick by not adding the hundreds of Indians who hang off the trains?

Here’s a more accurate depiction of Rajiv by yours truly.

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The new characters will make their debut in the new film, The Great Race, which will be released in the UK in May 2016.

The Great Race sounds a bit Nazi if you ask me?

I sincerely hope they bring Ringo Starr back as narrator and let him showcase his best Maharishi accent for the voice of Rajiv.

Guardians Of The Galaxy

Guardians Of The Galaxy is a breath of fresh air when it comes to comic book super hero movies; I absolutely love the Avengers and their individual films, but there is something truly epic and unique about Guardians

Well, lots of somethings actually.

I watched the film in glorious IMAX format, utterly transfixed as the eye popping visuals took me away to a very weird but familiar Marvel galaxy.

Throughout the film, I kept thinking “if Star Wars Episode 7 is half as good as this, it’ll be amazing”.  It has that kind of feeling about it, I say again, EPIC.

In the year or so that lead up to the films release, I often wondered how they would pull off bringing cult favourites Rocket Racoon (a furry, talking rodent Han Solo) and Root (an Ent-like tree version of Cheebacca) to life.

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The answer, they absolutely smashed it.  I loved every second of Groot and Rocket on the screen; Bradley Cooper’s voice acting is a perfect fit to the CGI and Groot’s animation is phenomenal?!?

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I thought Drax was hilarious, Dave Bautista was the surprise package in this film for me; his deadpan delivery was priceless and I love how he brought one of my favourite characters to life.

Zoe Saldana was an inspired choice for Gamora, not many actresses could portray her with such a rich mix of masculinity and femininity.  She kicks arse.

Saving the best for last, Chris Pratt IS Star Lord.  Wow.  The ‘child of the 80’s’ retro character theme brought a smile to my face, every time he swaggered around on the screen. 

I still have my Walkman and awesome mix tape ūüėČ

The ‘dance off’ with Ronan The Accuser was hilarious, great to see the director taking risks like that to bring something unique to the film. 

The casting is excellent throughout, great villains and supporting characters truly bring the Marvel galaxy to life. 

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I must say, it was utterly cool NOT hearing the usual wannabe comic geeks pretending like they were familiar with the characters; nor did I hear any regurgitated Wikipedia facts about the characters during the credits like I often hear during Marvel films. 

When Howard The Duck popped up in the credits scene and everybody around me were saying “who the fuck is that?!?”.  That was a great moment.  Fuck you mainstream!

I’m looking forward to seeing how they weave the Guardians into the Avengers 3rd movie along with Doctor Strange.  I actually think I may wet myself with excitement when I see them all on screen.

Josh Brolin will be excellent as Thanos.  When that chair turned around and Thanos appeared in full…..wow?!!

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As for Guardians of the Galaxy.  More please!

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Star Wars Ice Cube Trays From Lakeland

I was rather chuffed to find these very cool (ho de ho de ho) Star Wars ice cube trays in Lakelands last week.

£6.99 for each tray, bargain!!?

You can currently get two different trays, ‘Ships’ (Millennium Falcon, Star Destroyer, AT-AT and Death Star) or ‘Characters’ (Stormtrooper, Darth Vader, R2-D2 and C3PO). I grabbed both!

http://www.lakeland.co.uk/18662/Star-Wars-Ships-Ice-Cube-Tray

http://www.lakeland.co.uk/18661/Star-Wars-Characters-Ice-Cube-Tray

They are very well made and I think you could probably use them to mould jelly and chocolate as well; I thought it’d be fun to freeze orange squash to show off the details, no, it’s not my own urine.

The Lego Movie

Just home from the cinema having seen ‘The Lego Movie’; I can honestly say I’ve not seen such a crazy and enjoyable film for ages!?

The animation is fantastic, as is the vast array of voice talent on offer throughout the film; Liam Neeson as ‘Bad Cop’ was hilarious.

It’s a non-stop ride from start to finish and the film genuinely took me back to my childhood once I clapped eyes on the retro Spaceman and the original knights.

I don’t normally watch ‘the making of’ documentaries that comes with a dvd release, but I think I’ll make an exception when this film comes out on blu-ray.   How the hell did they come up with it?

There must be some very, very talented people behind this film, most of whom were probably dropping acid from start to finish??

Go and see it!

Fringe finale – spoiler free

Spoiler free.

I was glad to see the Fringe series get a decent send off; I stuck through it during the slight dip that occurred halfway through and thought the final episode wrapped things up nicely.

There were so many of the things in the finale that reminded me of the first season,  which was obviously the point!   I can still remember being glued to the first season as they unveiled the pattern. 
The emotional scenes between key players was also done extremely well and I am sad that I will not see John Noble portray Walter Bishop again because he created a legendary character.

Oh well!   Good bye Fringe,  gone,  but not forgotten!

Dredd – 3D Blu-Ray Review

Just finished watching ‘Dredd’.

Drokk!  What a blast from the past!!!

‘Dredd’ reminded me of the good old days, when post-apocalyptic films didn’t always require a patronising and mind bending story about the self destructive qualities of humanity or attempt to squeeze a huge array of bland characters (played by ‘B’ list Hollywood stars) into pointless sub-plots.¬†¬†

In fact,¬† it reminded me of everything I loved about watching ‘Robocop’ or ‘Escape From New York’ as a kid.¬† Awesome,¬† life changing films for me.¬†¬†

I was a MASSIVE Judge Dredd comic fan growing up (and 2000AD!);¬† the comics were harsh and gritty in their portrayal of a futuristic ‘civilisation’ which is teetering¬† on the verge of collapse each and every day.¬†

I’d religiously spend my holiday money in the 80’s on the comics;¬† usually purchased from an unsuspecting carrot crunching newsagent in Selsey High Street during the Summer holidays or from the comic shop within the indoor markets down by Reeves Corner in Croydon.¬†

The trademark Judge Dredd story lines were always violent (yay!!) and laced with a fantastic sense of humour; they were as much tongue in cheek as they were shocking?

I often wonder if the politically reflective Judge Dredd comics would have been published today?   What with the terminal levels of unbalanced political correctness within the UK; expect Lord Vaz to start a crusade to retrospectively ban the comics, you read it here first!

So,  to the plot.

Mega City One is a reluctant oasis within the nuclear wasteland remnants of the United States of America; kept in check by the Judges, men and women who ruthlessly bring justice to those who break the law, without the need for trial or jury. 

I thought it was fantastic how the story of the film completely centres around Judge Dredd and Judge candidate Anderson; it is simply a story about an average day of unrest in Mega City One where Anderson is under Dredds evaluation to become a fully empowered Judge?  

They unwittingly become entangled in a block (a 200 storey tall apartment buildings) gang war where the Ma Ma gang (run by a crazy drugged up former hooker called Ma Ma) are looking to expand their influence in Mega City One using a drug which makes the brain think time has slowed to a fraction of a second.

The time delay drug made think of the effects of ‘cake’¬† as reported on ‘The Day Today’.¬†¬† Look it up on YouTube later if you are unfamiliar!

Overall,¬† I thought the film was fucking fantastic and the no nosense way Dredd ended Ma Ma’s reign showed that the film was all about him.¬† Loved that.¬†¬†

Karl Urban is perfect as Dredd and it was awesome seeing him use the full arsenal of the Lawgiver (his gun!).   I also thought Olivia Thirlby was great as the psionic Judge Anderson and look forward to seeing the chemistry between them develop in future films.

What storylines will they nick for sequels?¬†¬† The ‘Judge Child’¬† is a good candidate, personally,¬† I hope they go for Judge Death!¬† “The ssssseeentennnnce issss deaaaath!”

The 3D Blu-Ray version looks gorgeous and is a must own purchase,  buy it!

Resident Evil Damnation

I watched the animated (CGI) ‘Resident Evil – Damnation’ film today and really enjoyed it; thought I’d post a quick review!

People often say the films are just glorified game cut scenes; to some extent that’s true, I personally think they are excellently animated and my attention didn’t stray from the format (probably because¬† I’m a Manga fan of old) and enjoyed the usual quirky characters!

Overall, I think I enjoy the Resident Evil films by Paul W S Anderson as elements of them are true to the gaming series; however I genuinely wonder what a ‘serious’ director would have done with the franchise given the power of the back story that gives the games their impact.

The CGI Resident Evil films are as close to an alternative as you are going to get until Anderson stops churning out films and lets someone else have a go.

Unlike the last animated film (Resident Evil – Degeneration) there is clearly evidence of a much greater Japanese style and influence in the movie, particular in the action scenes.

I absolutely loved the scenes with the Tyrants and the Lickers.  Awesome.

As a huge fan of most things RE (Biohazard if you’re a hardcore fan) I hope there will be another film in the wings because they are getting better as they go; only time will tell if they bring Chris or Jill in as Leon surely deserves a nice break on a Caribbean Island?

Go on

I am trying to broaden my TV horizons, so I decided to grab the new Matthew Perry comedy called ‘Go On’; I am really glad that I did as it is quite funny and has quite a lot of charm!

Perry plays a cynical and witty sports radio host and has to ‘Go on’ with his life following the recent death of his wife; he reluctantly joins a support group at the request of his job and the show’s selling point is the great casting and chemistry of the group members.

At 20 odd minutes long an episode, ‘Go On’ is great T.V. and a series that I shall look forward to watching each week in between Dexter, Fringe and all my other usual guilty pleasures!

Great to see Matthew Perry in something funny again.