Movie Reviews

Extraction (2020)

extraction-2020-movie-review-posterDirector: Sam Hargrave

Genre: Action, Thriller

Runtime: 116 Minutes

Main Cast: Chris Hemsworth, Rudhraksh Jaiswal, Randeep Hooda, Golshifteh Farahani, Pankaj Tripathi, David Harbour, Bryon Lerum, Ryder Lerum

Plot: Chris Hemsworth plays Tyler Rake (yes, you read that right), a fearless mercenary offering his services on the black market. He’s hired to rescue the kidnapped son of an infamous drug lord, and although the mission seems straightforward enough, things soon take a turn for the worse.

My Thoughts: I don’t even know what day of lockdown we’re on now. I lost myself along the way but I’m trying to crawl my way back. Now I’ve gotten back into movies I’ve taken the opportunity to start ticking movies off my watchlist, but today I’m here to talk about Netflix’s latest hit, Extraction (2020). Was I in it for the plot? Let’s not kid ourselves. I was in for Chris Hemsworth, covered in sweat and dirt, kicking ass. #sorrynotsorry

Maybe it’s because we don’t have many new offerings right now, but I really, really enjoyed it! It doesn’t bring anything new to the action movie scene, it’s terribly predictable at times, and David Harbour was massively underused, but everything else was just pretty spot on. I didn’t find myself drifting towards my phone at any point and I found myself pretty invested in the story, plus the action scenes ranged from pretty good to downright epic.

In fact, it can’t be that bad of a movie because I hear a sequel has been confirmed. Yikes, though. Do we really need a sequel? I get that the ending could be taken 2 ways depending on how you feel about that final scene, but the way I imagined it, a sequel isn’t really possible.

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Best Bit: I know it’s all anyone can talk about when it comes to this movie but that 11-minute or however long one-take action shot was hella cool. I’ve never felt so part of an action movie before, what a shame none of us will be able to experience that scene in a cinema!

Worst Bit: When the movie started, with the scene of a battered Chris Hemsworth seeking cover behind a car on a busy bridge, I called how the movie would end. I kind of meant it as a joke, but…I’ve never been so disappointed to be right before.

Fun Trivia: The movie was shot in a city in India, Ahmedabad, and the public went berserk to see Chris Hemsworth. Many fans stayed at the set for as long as 15 hours to get a glimpse of him.

My Rating: 4 out of 5 rakes, which believe it or not, are used in one scene where Tyler Rake does, in fact, kill a man…with a rake.

extraction-2020-review-rake

Random Posts

Lockdown Day 14 & Downhill (2020)

Here we are, at the end of week 2. I feel strangely better about all of this than I did this time last week. Maybe I’m starting to accept this as my new life now. Who knows when our lives will be back to normal and we can see our family and friends again? One thing is for sure, my Facebook feed is as toxic as ever. Our lockdown rules allow us outside once a day for exercise and yes, there are people ignoring the rules. They’re gathering in huge groups and filling parks, etc. So today’s big news was that if that doesn’t stop, we won’t even be allowed exercise.

My question? What are the police/government doing about these large gatherings? Because if they can’t control them now, how do they expect to be able to enforce a full lockdown? It’s an empty threat, at the end of the day.

For our little household, we’ve been enjoying the nicer weather in our garden and in the woods for our 1 trip out, as well as doing lots of arts and crafts at home. It mostly leaves me too tired to really do anything else by the time the little one is in bed, but it fills our day so what more can I ask for? My daughter wakes up each morning with a big smile on her face, and never wants it to be bedtime in the evening so if all my efforts mean she’s shielded from this mess, I reckon that’s enough.

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Last night I watched Downhill (2020) which was a movie Ii really wanted to see at the cinema, but the times were always rubbish and it only showed for 2 weeks. That’s a thought though, I don’t think I’ll complain about crap timings at the cinema again when they reopen. I’ll go and see everything I can, at whatever time they show it!

Anyway! I was expecting Downhill to be a complete disaster, and it kind of was. I almost turned it off after 15 minutes from sheer boredom but it got better. The mood and vibe of the movie was all over the place, though. With Will Ferrell and Julia Louis-Dreyfus as the leads I was expecting a comedy but it was surprisingly…more of a drama? Like, it wanted to be Marriage Story (2019) but it just felt…awkward. Julia Louis-Dreyfus was brilliant though, she stole the show in every scene.

I’m sorry I haven’t been catching up with anyone else’s’ blog lately. Weirdly, in a time we’re all stuck at home I’ve found myself with less free time on my hands than ever before, but I’ll make it up to you eventually, I promise. For now, I just hope you’re keeping happy and safe ❤

Random Posts

Lockdown Day 7 & The Upside (2019)

So the world feels like we’ve entered the upside-down but at least one thing never changes, I’m great at making a plan and failing to stick to it. I’ve been stuck under a bit of a grey cloud these past couple of days, but I was determined to journal this crazy situation and so here I am.

Our supermarkets finally have strict measures in place. There is a limit on how many people are allowed in the store at any time, so you now have to queue to get in. There are now sanitising stations for trolleys and baskets too, huzzah!

You know what’s angered me though? I have an unwell family member right now. They used the NHS 111 online service to answer questions about their symptoms and was told yes, they most definitely have Covid-19 symptoms. They were given a reference number. And that was it. They won’t be tested. You what? How on earth can we report daily figures on the number of cases when we aren’t even testing people with symptoms?!

I’m dreading tomorrow. I’ve now been put on furlough so I’m not working, but my husband’s job falls into the grey area of not being an essential business, but not being public-facing, so he has to go to work still. This past week he’s been working shifts to reduce the number of staff in the unit, so 13:30 – 20:30, but for whatever reason, they’re now scrapping that and so he’s working his using 7:30 – 16:30 from tomorrow. It’s so tough keeping a 2-year old entertained at home all day, I really struggle with it, and now I’m losing my partner in crime, my help, and my only chance at conversation all day.

That’s what I’m finding the hardest about the lockdown. It’s so lonely. Plus, once we’ve finally got the little one to bed, I’m so exhausted and full of anxiety I struggle to enjoy a bit of ‘me time’ with a movie before going to bed and starting over again the next day. Urgh.

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I’m still enjoying Animal Crossing, that game couldn’t have come at a better time, really. And I finally got around to watching The Upside (2019). I wanted to see it at the cinema, missed my chance and then forgot it even existed. Which is a shame, because it’s a really decent movie! Not the flat-out comedy I was expecting, more of a drama than anything else, but Kevin Hart and Bryan Cranston have such good chemistry it was hard not to enjoy.

It has a The Pursuit of Happyness (2006) vibe to it, with elements of Me Before You (2016). Well worth a watch if you haven’t already.

UK Netflix finally got Season 6 of Brooklyn Nine-Nine so that’s what I’m watching whilst I write this, and then who knows. I’m torn between watching Underwater (2020) or digging up an old Domhnall Gleeson movie. I hope you’re all keeping safe and well, wherever you are. We’re all in this together ❤

…and now I have that High School Musical song in my head.

Random Posts

Lockdown Day 4 & Bloodshot (2020)

How are we all coping today? My parents decided to let my little girl have her Easter present early so this morning my Dad dropped off a trampoline to our back garden! Contactless delivery of course, couldn’t even say hi which really sucks. I did tell them that a trampoline is very extravagant for an Easter present but they really do spoil her. Anyway, most of the morning was spent in the garden building it and the little one LOVES it. It’s definitely helped that the UK is finally having some decent weather.

My husband is working late shifts this week so he set out after lunch, and me and sprog hopped into the car to drive to some woods we’ve never visited before. I’m trying to use our allotted outdoor exercise time to visit some new, secluded areas. I really enjoyed the walk, but it seems my hatred of staying indoors wasn’t passed down to my daughter, so it was a short walk.

This evening we watched far too much Cory Carson on Netflix. Are anyone else’s kids obsessed with this show? I’ve had to learn what episode my daughter wants to watch based on some rambled clues she gives me. Some are easier than others.
“The ice cream one”
“The doctor one”
“The bye-bye one”
“The stink stinky head one”

Last night, against all advice, I watched Bloodshot (2020). It was pretty much as I expected. Not a total flop but not really a great movie. If it were made and released 15 years ago it would have felt like a better movie, but the techy, superhero-style movies have just moved on way too far now.

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It did get better as it went on though, I quite enjoyed Guy Pearce’s character and the reveal about what they were actually getting Vin Deisel’s character to do. The kind of movie where if you saw it in the cinema it might feel like a wasted visit, but man, I would actually go and watch Cats right now if it meant I could go to my local cinema.

Right now I’m watching The Upside (2019), a movie I really wanted to see and then totally forgot it even existed. More on that tomorrow. For now, keep safe, sane, and happy ❤

Random Posts

Lockdown Day 3 & The Hunt (2020)

Hi guys, you might have noticed I haven’t been around lately. The Coronavirus pretty much ruined my creative writing and my appetite for watching movies. I’m trying though, so whilst I’d probably say I’m still on some sort of hiatus, I thought it would be therapeutic to carry on using the blog as some sort of diary for now.

Today is what feels like Lockdown Day 3 for me in the UK. I’m working from home for the foreseeable future, but I work in a service industry that is essentially closed right now. In the background, my boss is trying to secure government funding to cover our wages whilst we have no work, and hopefully he’s successful. Even so, if work doesn’t pick up for us once this is over, I’m out of a job, and with a mortgage and a child depending on me, that’s causing me real mental issues right now.

So is social media. Our UK lockdown guidelines allow us out of the house to do essential shopping, as well as 1 form of outdoor exercise per day. I’ve been using my time to take my little girl to either the woods or a large outdoor park to run around in, obviously keeping our distance from everyone else. Now, they’re starting to close parks and I’m running out of options. It seems so counter-productive, and sometimes I don’t even dare share photos or videos of our walks because others have interpreted the rules as ‘DON’T LEAVE THE HOUSE EVER’ and I feel like I’m passive-aggressively being told I’m a terrible person. I need to get out for my own mental wellbeing, and being out in the woods is far less dangerous than being in a supermarket complaining about how busy it is.

So anyway – that’s how things are right now. Every day is something to overcome, but hey, we’re all in this together. And I guess that’s why it makes me sad when I see so much aggression on my Facebook and Instagram feeds.

I managed to watch The Hunt (2020) though, on Monday night. I already had my cinema ticket booked for it and then, of course, the cinemas got closed, so I was so glad I could stream it! It was absolutely bonkers.

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I’m so impressed that everyone is doing a fabulous job of not mentioning spoilers, but at the same time I’m GUTTED I didn’t see it in the cinema because those first 10 minutes were jaw-droppingly brilliant. It had a real B-Movie vibe about it, but in a good way, and oh that ending! It reminded me a lot of Ready or Not (2019) for all the right reasons.

We also got Disney+ at long last in Europe yesterday. I got a week’s free trial, for now, to see how I get on. I’d love to say I’ve been making the most of it but so far I’ve only watched The Muppets (2011) and way too many episodes of Phineas & Ferb. Whoops.

Tonight I’m either going to watch Bloodshot (2020) or start tackling my never-ending watchlist, I’m undecided yet. Watch this space. For now, I hope you’re all keeping well, and I can’t wait till the day we can complain about someone chewing popcorn too loudly at the cinema! Love to you all ❤

Movie Reviews

Onward (2020)

onward-movie-review-poster-2020Director: Dan Scanlon

Genre: Family, Adventure, Fantasy, Animation

Runtime: 102 Minutes

Main Cast: Tom Holland, Chris Pratt, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Octavia Spencer, Mel Rodriguez, Kyle Bornheimer, Lena Waithe, Ali Wong

Plot: Years ago, the world was a magical place. But magic is a hard skill to master, and so as time went on, the mythical creatures in this world found newer and easier ways to get by. When Ian Lightfoot turns 16, his mother presents him and his older brother Barley with a gift from their father who passed away before Ian was born, a staff and a spell with the power to bring their father back from the dead for one day.

My Thoughts: After so many years, Disney Pixar don’t need to furnish me with any marketing. Just give me a date for when their next movie comes out and I’ll be there. That said, does anyone else feel the marketing for Onward has been a little…light? Not only that, in the trailers I saw over the past few months, I can’t help but feel like Onward could easily be mistaken for a Dreamworks movie. It has that kind of vibe to it, you know?

And if I’m brutally honest, I wasn’t blown away by the movie for a while. I was absorbed in the world-building, and I loved Ian and Barley as characters, but it felt like a very straightfoward, colour by numbers kind of story for a while. However. There was a moment around halfway through, when Ian and Barley are dancing with their father, that it all finally clicked, and the Disney Pixar magic kicked in, and every moment after that was just so good!

No spoilers of course but the ending really took me by surprise. I mean, you can see where the story is leading and you know what the climax will involve, but it didn’t go the way I thought at all which is always welcome. Oh boy did I cry though. It was up there with “Take her to the moon for me” on my Disney Pixar crying scale.

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Best Bit: The spells that Ian learns throughout the story are so much fun and took me back to my Harry Potter days. Aloft Elevar is the new Wingardium Leviosa, people. However! My absolute favourite bit was the creature that I will not reveal for spoilers and…let’s say…the finishing touch the curse brings it. I laughed quite loudly at that.

Worst Bit: I’m not fully sold on the mum’s boyfriend as a character. For a movie centring its themes on family, death and grief and everything that follows, I would have expected there to be more about the brother’s feelings towards Colt, other than simply mocking him.

Fun Trivia: Pixar’s iconic Pizza Planet truck appears in the troll bridge toll scene.

My Rating: 4 out of 5 cans of Mountain Dew DOOM. I wish they were real!

onward-movie-2020-mountain-dew-doom

Movie Reviews

Coronavirus Double Feature: Contagion (2011) & Isle of Dogs (2018)

I’m not making fun of the terrible situation happening all around the world right now, but just as I watched lots of wedding movies when I was planning my own, watching movies about parenting when I was pregnant, I seem to have found myself watching movies about pandemics what with Coronavirus getting worse each day. If you can’t make light of a bad situation, what can you do?

coronavirus-movies-isle-of-dogs-2018

It started with Isle of Dogs, which has been on my watchlist ever since it came out 2 years ago. I had no idea what it was actually about other than that it was a Wes Anderson movie and I definitely needed to see it. Once I realised it was about how all dogs get banished to an island because of an outbreak of canine flu, my mind started creating links, and I don’t know about anyone else but for me it seems all my family, friends and work colleagues have been watching Contagion over the weekend so hey presto! Double feature.

Isle of Dogs is a delightful little movie. I’ve always been a fan of stop motion animation and know the sheer amount of work that goes into creating each second of footage. I never expected it to still look so ‘Wes Anderson-y’, if that makes sense? It’s only been in very recent years that I’ve discovered Wes Anderson, and I’m definitely a fan. There’s so much to enjoy about Isle of Dogs, from its gorgeous art style to its witty dialogue, to its heartwarming story.

coronavirus-movies-contagion-2011

Which brings us to Contagion, a movie that is currently sitting at #5 in the iTunes Movie Chart, beating movies such as Once Upon a Time in Hollywood and Doctor Sleep. I guess the biggest draw about Contagion is that apart from the fact the virus in the movie kills it’s victim within a matter of days, so many other details are scarily similar to the Cornonavirus!

It boasts a stellar cast including Matt Damon, Gwenyth Paltrow, Kate Winslet, Lawrence Fishburne and Jude Law, and if you haven’t watched it yet, give it a couple of hours of your time instead of stockpiling toilet paper!

On a serious note – since I started this post there has been a confirmed case of Coronavirus at the hospital 2 miles from my house, and our Government has delayed reporting on the current number of cases today. It’s a scary world to be in right now, so stay safe, and wash your hands you detty pigs!