• The Reporters

    The Reporters

    ★★★

    Michael Kitchen is mentored by Robert Urquhart at a regional newspaper. Kitchen's northern wide-eyed eagerness is similar to Malcolm McDowall's Alex whilst Urquhart is all wistful subdued bitterness before meeting a gentle and welcoming landlady who may very well extend his life.

    The newspaper setting is interesting with some cool rat-a-tat-tat dialogue whilst location work is varied utilising a new shopping centre replete with early Currys.

    Perfectly serviceable entry from Michael Apted but with none of his noted documentary approach.

  • Carson Country

    Carson Country

    ★★★

    A recreation of the events that led to the creation of Northern Ireland with the focus on the influence of Edward Carson and his commitment to Ulster unionism.
    The sets are connected in a creative manner with some broken walls allowing access to streets and pubs which gives the impression of watching an elaborately staged play as opposed to the more staid settings of the other offerings in this series.

    The actual depiction of the plotting and planning on both…

  • Little Miss Sunshine

    Little Miss Sunshine

    ★★★½

    Totally struggling with the fact that Abigail Breslin wore a fatsuit to create the character. Alan Arkin doesn't hang around for long enough and the climax isn't as cool as it thinks it is but it is still a sweet little takedown of pageant culture and the sexualisation of children.

  • Homicide

    Homicide

    ★★★½

    Mamet's third. Maybe his third best film.

  • Ford v Ferrari

    Ford v Ferrari

    ★★★

    Lewis Hamilton and Jos Verstappen wouldn't have lasted a test lap before crying like Henry Ford 2.

    The various effects houses that collaborated to recreate motor racing of the sixties do a seamless job of making the CG blend with the vintage chassis and cars. This approach fails however when the filmmakers have used to the tech to airbrush the very real threat to driver life out of their version of history.

    letterboxd.com/film/grand-prix/ does both of these things as well throwing in some diverting soap opera if the racing doesn't grab you.

    Fine, but fake.

  • Water Lilies

    Water Lilies

    ★★½

    Under written and understated examination of adolescence in three French teens. Or is it an excuse for a pervy director to convince a bunch of parents to let their kids hang out in a changing room with her whilst she makes art?

    The fact that Adele Haenel looks clearly older than Pauline Acquart does little to assuage suspicions that Haenel is an analogue for Sciamma.

    The actual specificities of the problems each girl is experiencing is somewhat lost amidst the…

  • A Swedish Love Story

    A Swedish Love Story

    ★★½

    I did not love this. The Swedish summer is beautifully captured by Jorgen Persson but the non-acting spend much of the first act just hovering around each other and the second getting off with each other. The much vaunted familial strife is disinteresting and Andersson doesn't seem to have much interest in connecting the children and adults dramatically.

    The entire piece feels like he added the abusive adult relationships to give some respite to what would have been a naturalistic…

  • Monstrosity

    Monstrosity

    ★★

    At the very end the camera sort of does a Milligan wobble and pans up a little to reveal the entire cast and Andy join Hal Borske on the bench. Something about that moment as Hal removes his monster feet and Andy hovers approvingly over some friends and colleagues, was way more satisfying than this unsurprisingly insane take on Frankenstein.

  • The Game

    The Game

    ★★½

    This poorly acted but undeniably quite ambitious horror has inexplicably been remastered when other director's work goes untouched.

    The notion of a group of rich people fucking with some others on a promise of money is a good one and not original but there are enough surprises to ensure that this is not a total waste of time.

  • South Park: Post COVID

    South Park: Post COVID

    ★★½

    Laughed twice. The Butters reveal and the way the mental institution staff dealt with his NFT obsession. People who are upset at the Cartman resolution clearly haven't watched enough South Park. Cartman has always been the devil.

    This felt like a full stop for Trey and Matt.

  • Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home

    Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home

    ★★★½

    Great fun and a good antidote to the sombre mood of Search and Khan. At times the adventure on Earth is more akin to other shows like Quantum Leap or other sci-fi where characters meet people from other times and dimensions.

    It's sort of like if they had made an Avengers movie that focused on some cosmic shawarma conspiracy instead of Thanos.

  • The Fishing Party

    The Fishing Party

    ★★★

    These characters represent curiosity, tolerance and respect. They seek out new experiences and new people with open minds and offer friendship and respect to all they encounter.

    Unfortunately this is less compelling than Shakespeare or Bust, possibly because the subject matter doesn't really stretch our trio beyond their comfort zones of camaraderie, booze and goodwill.

    Jane Freeman's domination of her husband is a refreshing reminder that the patriarchy has not always prevailed, although I'm sure her character has some trauma…