Labyrinth

When she is forced to babysit her infant half-brother Toby, selfish teenager Sarah (Jennifer Connelly) invokes a goblin magic spell that summons Jareth, the Goblin King (David Bowie) to snatch Toby and take him to the Goblin Kingdom. Sarah has just thirteen hours to make her way through Jareth’s labyrinth to save Toby, or he’ll be turned into a goblin and will stay there forever.
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JFK

On November 22nd, 1963, President John F Kennedy was killed, supposedly by lone gunman Lee Harvey Oswald, who himself was killed by a man named Jack Ruby before the case could go to trial. Despite several other theories, the case was dropped for three years, until Jim Garrison, the District Attorney of New Orleans, picked it up again after noticing some discrepancies within the Warren Report, written to document the details of the assassination. Garrison and his team re-launch the investigation, certain that there is more to it than simply one man and his gun.
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Spring Breakers

This review was originally written as part of my USA Road Trip series for French Toast Sunday.

For this addition of my USA Road Trip I’ll be celebrating – albeit a little tardily – that great American tradition of Spring Break as I delve into the wonderful insanity that is Florida, home state of FTS’ very own Robert, and he has informed me that it is definitively the craziest state in the whole country. Judging by this movie, I’ll have to agree. Spring Break is not a thing in the UK, or at least if it is I was never invited, and for that I’m grateful. I have a reputation for being anti-fun and especially anti-partying, and that goes double for absolutely everything that takes place in Harmony Korine’s Spring Breakers, a film that, if I were a character in it, I’d have happily remained in the nondescript, comparatively tedious college town at the start because, as I’m frequently told, I fail at life.
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A Hard Day’s Night

John, Paul, George and Ringo, otherwise known as The Rutles, spend their lives fleeing from screaming fans, aggravating their tour manager and generally larking about without a care in the world in this weekend-in-the-life snapshot as they prepare for a live show whilst looking after Paul’s grandfather (Wilfrid Brambell) along the way.   large_a_hard_days_night_blu-ray7alargest Continue reading

Audition

After his wife dies and his son grows up,  Shigeharu (Ryo Ishibashi) is encouraged to look for a new wife. A friend of his in the film industry suggests setting up an audition process, under the guise of looking for a star for a new movie, during which Shigeharu can scope out the perfect candidate. He is initially apprehensive of these underhand tactics, but eventually concedes and goes ahead. During the trials, it is clear one girl stands out; Asami (Eihi Shiina). The two meet up, but Shigeharu soon suspects everything with his new dream girl may not be as perfect as it seems.audition Continue reading

2001: A Space Odyssey

Where do I begin with 2001: A Space Odyssey? It’s a film I’ve kind of seen once before, in the background whilst I worked on other things. I’d gleamed a few details from certain scenes, but for the most part I remembered very little, with various podcasts I’d listened to seemingly describing a film I’d clearly not paid anywhere near enough attention to. Thus, I championed it to be the latest Movie of the Month on the Lambcast. It won, I hosted the show (here’s a link to it) and, despite that relatively in depth conversation with Robert, Jess and Nick – all of whom have more experience with this film than I – I’m still a little lost as to how I feel about the film.
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Planet of the Apes (1968)

In the year 1972, four astronauts are deep in space, on a mission of discovery. They awake from suspended animation to find that one of their crew is dead and their ship has landed on an unfamiliar planet, and is rapidly sinking into a body of water. After making a quick escape with as much equipment as they can carry, the three survivors must find a way to survive, something made much more difficult by the planet’s native population.

Recently we recorded an episode of the Lambcast all about the original Planet of the Apes movies, from 1968’s Planet through to 1973’s Battle for the Planet of the Apes. I’d never seen any of the films before, so I was especially looking forward to the show, as I’ve now seen them all. They vary from the excellent (this one) to the dismal (Battle), the thought-provoking (Escape from the Planet of the Apes) to bat-shit insane (Beneath the Planet of the Apes), and you can listen to the discussion we had about them all here. As it happens, Planet of the Apes is also on the 1001 Movies list, and is widely regarded as a classic, so I’m selecting it as my Blind Spot pick for this month. Continue reading

Top 10… Movie Cab Drivers

This week’s Lambcast is another Movie of the Month, and this month the topic of conversation was Martin Scorsese’s Taxi Driver. As such, here’s a rundown of my Top 10 Movie Taxi Drivers:      VVa3lael6qrninjqCHYu8rP9o1_1280

Honourable mention: John McClane & Zeus Carver (Bruce Willis & Samuel L. Jackson), Die Hard With A Vengeance?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

OK, technically neither John nor Zeus (who does not look Puerto Rican to me) are taxi drivers, but at various points throughout this New York-set sequel they do drive a taxi, so technically they are taxi drivers, and therefore eligible for this list. I’ve loved Die Hard with a Vengeance since many years before I even saw Die Hard, and I think it’s the bickering relationship between the two that drew me to it. Specifically, I love the scene in which the two must make it across town in a very short amount of time, during rush hour traffic. The solution? drive straight through Central Park, ploughing through cyclists and pedestrians alike. This scene gives way to my favourite line in the film, when Zeus asks if McClane is aiming for the people, he replies “No, well, maybe that mime.” Other great taxi drivers I could have used are the pain in the ass sports fan who Cuba Gooding Jr. is lumbered with in Rat Race, Darwin (Edi Gathegi) the underused evolving mutant in X-Men: First Class, who we first meet driving a cab, Beauregarde from The Great Muppet Caper, Alan Ford in An American Werewolf in London, J B Smoove in Date Night and the terrifying, snarling, grotesgue “Ain’t much better in here, kid” guy from Home Alone 2. Continue reading

Taxi Driver

Travis Bickle can’t sleep. He lives in New York and is up all night, so why not become a cab driver? Well, for starters, he hates pretty much everyone on the streets after dark, plus, he’s a potentially psychotic madman, with aspirations of saving, destroying or integrating himself into society, depending on the day. He spends his days pining for a campaign worker for a local presidential candidate, but when that relationship turns sour Bickle’s attentions turn to a young prostitute, whom Travis believes is in need of a saviour.
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