The Babysitter (2017)

the-babysitter-movie-review-poster-2017Director: McG (no, I didn’t pass out at the keyboard mid-typing…that’s this guy’s name, apparently)

Genre: Horror, Comedy

Runtime: 85 Minutes

Main Cast: Samara Weaving, Judah Lewis, Robbie Amell, Hana Mae Lee, Bella Thorne, Emily Alyn Lind, Andrew Bachelor, Doug Haley, Leslie Bibb, Ken Marino

Plot: Cole is, without a doubt, a bit of a wimp. His classmates at school would use a much worse term for it, but poor Cole is afraid of everything and is the only kid in school who still has a babysitter. Thankfully, his babysitter just so happens to be super cool and super hot, and one night Cole decides to spy on her after bedtime.

My Thoughts: Last week I watched Ready or Not, the first Samara Weaving movie I’d seen, and I kind of fell in love with her. I mean she’s beautiful, funny, and kicks ass, so who wouldn’t? When I spotted her face on the poster for The Babysitter whilst scrolling through Netflix I knew I needed to watch it, so I went in literally blind, not knowing what the movie was about at all. Whilst it’s not up on that same level as Ready or Not, The Babysitter is definitely a fun watch for the spooky season!

I really felt for Cole. He tries his hardest to stick up for himself, but his home life is hardly desirable. His parents are too focused on saving their failing marriage to give him the attention he deserves. Thankfully, his babysitter, Bee, is everything he needs in a friend. She drives away the bullies, teaches him how to properly defend against himself, and gets involved in his nerdy games. I guess it’s a real shame she’s the leader of some cult, huh?

From the moment the movie went from ‘this is a nice story’ to ‘what the $*%&’ it was a wild ride to the credits. It’s a short movie anyway but it feels even shorter with how mental it goes. Honestly, the biggest takeaway I took from it was that if Home Alone was remade sometime soon (like every other movie is) then it would by no means be a family movie!

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Worst Bit: I loved Bee’s character so much that it felt like a complete betrayal to see her kind of mocking the nerdy guy she’d invited to the house to play spin the bottle. Come on Bee, I thought you were on the nerds’ side…

Best Bit: …BAM. Two knives to the head. Didn’t see it coming at all. Might have actually peed myself a little. 10/10 would recommend.

Fun Trivia: In the original script, Sonya was the cheerleader, Allison was a journalist for the school paper, John was called “John the Baptist” and Max had dreadlocks. The characters were later reimagined to more closely reflect stereotypes of slasher movie victims, only in this film, they’re the antagonists.

My Rating: 3 and a half bottles to play spin the bottle with. If the hot girl gets dared to kiss everyone in the room? RUN.

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The Perfection (2018)

the-perfection-2018-netflix-movie-reviewDirector: Richard Shepard

Genre: Drama, Thriller

Runtime: 90 Minutes

Main Cast: Allison Williams, Logan Browning, Steven Weber, Alaina Huffman, Molly Grace, Milah Thompson

Plot: Charlotte was once a musical prodigy until her mother fell ill and she was forced to become her full-time carer. When her mother passes, Charlotte contacts her old cello tutor and asks to catch up, where she meets her replacement, Lizzie. The two strike up an unusual friendship and travel together, but Lizzie is unwell.

My Thoughts: I only watched this movie 2 nights ago but I keep forgetting what it’s called. Then when I finally remember, all I can think of is that Michael Fassbender ‘perfection’ meme. So, yeah. Anyway, whilst stuck trying to pick a movie to watch that wasn’t too long and didn’t require my full attention, I stumbled across The Perfection in my Netflix recommendations. The premise didn’t sound the most thrilling, but clocking in at just 90 minutes long, it wouldn’t be a huge loss if it was a bit rubbish.

This post will be spoiler-free but I definitely urge you to go into the movie as blind as possible if it’s something you’re interested in because it’s one of those movies that’s best enjoyed that way. My husband kept asking me from across the room, ‘what’s that movie even about?’ and I ended up with 3 different answers as the movie went on.
1. This troubled cello girl is angry that some new girl has taken her fame, she’s probably going to murder her.
2. No, wait, I think it’s actually some kind of disease outbreak kind of movie. That new girl is screwed.
3. My bad, that guy is a terrible, terrible person and he’s going dowwwwwwn.

It’s not the most groundbreaking thriller around, the middle part is hundreds times better than the ending and it’s about as exciting as a movie about cello players can be, but I’m definitely glad I gave it a go. I wouldn’t rush to watch it or anything but it’s a fun watch!

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Best Bit: That middle reveal was actually a brilliant movie moment. I was laughing my ass off about how ridiculous it was that Charlotte pulled out a butchers knife from nowhere, and then the movie rewound and I was like oh. Oh! OH MY GOD. It’s just a shame that the finale (whilst pretty cool) just couldn’t live up to the awesomeness of that moment.

Worst Bit: It’s got a really slow start. I’m not ashamed to say I strayed my attention to my phone until that guy got really sick and I wondered what direction the movie was heading in. If you can make it that far then you’re set!

Fun Trivia: When Anton is showing the Chapel to new student Zhang Li, he asks her to sing a musical note, specifically an A-sharp. The note Zhang Li then sings is indeed a perfect A-sharp, which would indicate Zhang Li has perfect pitch, a rare talent only exceptional musicians possess in which they are able to sing or identify any note by ear.

My Rating: 3 bottles of ibuprofen which can cure hangovers with no problems, but don’t help much when there are bugs crawling under your skin…

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Always Be My Maybe (2019)

always-be-my-maybe-2019-netflixDirector: Nahnatchka Khan

Genre: Comedy, Romance

Runtime: 101 Minutes

Main Cast: Ali Wong, Randall Park, James Saito, Michelle Buteau, Vivian Bang, Keanu Reeves, Susan Park, Daniel Dae Kim, Karan Soni, Charlyne Yi

Plot: Sasha and Marcus have been the best of friends since they were kids, and their friendship soon blossomed into a relationship that ended badly. Years later, Sasha and Marcus meet again.

My Thoughts: Our little Keanu Reeves fan club on Twitter still haven’t recovered from John Wick: Chapter 3 and then BAM, Netflix goes and drops Always Be My Maybe and throws us completely off balance. We’ll come back to Keanu though, it wouldn’t be fair to make this post all about him. I have mixed feelings when I type this but, it’s so great that we’re getting more movies like this with a diverse cast. It really is wonderful, but at the same time, I wish it wasn’t so obvious that movies with a cast like this are so rare. It’s hard for me to put into words, really.

Anyway, I’ve always had a soft spot for romcoms and this one is no exception. There’s nothing new brought to the genre here and you can guess the entire story easily from the brief plot description, but when it’s done well it’s easy to forgive. Marcus is absolutely adorable, I loved his band – especially their song during the credits! Sasha is an incredibly powerful character, but probably a little too powerful for my liking, she was quite unlikeable in some scenes.

What is it about movies with chefs that make me so darn hungry? File this movie under ‘Don’t watch before dinner’ along with Chef (2014) and Burnt (2015). Always Be My Maybe isn’t going to be in many movie fan’s Top 10 at the end of the year but it’s on Netflix, easily available to most, and you can watch must worse on a Saturday night with a takeaway!

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Best Bit: KEANU REEVES. No honestly, hear me out. I know I’m biased right now. But his scene in the restaurant was one of the funniest things I’ve ever seen. I had no idea he was actually playing himself, and I laughed till I cried. Can we have more Keanu roles where he wears thick glasses and acts like a complete douche bag? PLEASE, movie gods?!

But also – that song!
“Best believe I punched Keanu Reeves
And it was better than any scene
You could see in Speed
I hit John Wick
And now I’m feeling so appealing
Basically, I’m a god
You could call me Hercules”

Worst Bit: I liked the movie enough for the comedy but at times Sasha and Marcus’ relationship was hard to buy into. They’re both great in their own roles but the chemistry just isn’t there – I found myself not bothered whether they actually ended up together in the end or not.

Fun Trivia: Keanu Reeves filmed all his scenes in 4 days between shooting John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum (2019). All of his scenes were filmed in San Francisco instead of Vancouver to accommodate his schedule.

My Rating: 3 pairs of thick-rimmed glasses, because Keanu Reeves, that’s why.

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Mini Reviews: Movies Watched in May

So, May was an odd month for me, movie-wise. I wasn’t watching much at all at the start of the month, and then I went to see John Wick: Chapter 3, fell in love with cinema again…and spiraled into a Keanu Reeves obsession. Whoops. I blame @lady_sati. She’s such a bad influence!

As always, I never find the time to do a full review of what I watched, although I do have a full review for Always Be My Maybe (2019) sat in my drafts that will be ready soon. In the meantime though, here are a few words on what else I watched in May…

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Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile (2019)

Zac Efron has come such a long way since High School Musical. This is the story of Ted Bundy, during the time of his conviction and imprisonment. I’m glad they didn’t go down the nasty route of showing his murders, it would have just felt glorified. What’s left isn’t the most exciting movie in the world, but it’s still worth a watch.

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Booksmart (2019)

I got to see this early thanks to ODEON and I can’t believe I’m only writing about it now. It’s Olivia Wilde’s directional debut and it’s fantastic. I think the hype out there has killed it a little, it’s not an ‘instant classic’ like a lot have hailed it. It’s a very, very good movie and it’s one I’ll watch again as soon as I can but it’s not groundbreaking. That bathroom scene was hilarious, and I don’t think I’ll ever look at a stuffed panda in the same way again.

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Replicas (2018)

I…I don’t even have the excuse of Keanu Reeves to explain why I watched this, because it was before I saw John Wick: Chapter 3! I thought it started out fairly decent, all things considered, but it descended into stupidity. Keanu plays a scientist who, when distraught with the death of his family, makes clones of them. It was entertaining, but ‘meh’ at best.

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Wine Country (2019)

I’m so MAD at this movie for being so mediocre. The cast was so promising! I loved the idea! How did it turn out to be so boring? Maybe it was aimed at an older audience, and I’ll appreciate it more in 10-15 years…

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Knock Knock (2015)

Yeah, okay…I watched this trash for Keanu Reeves. It was a stupid home-invasion sort of story that wasn’t scary enough to be thrilling or dumb enough to be funny. It didn’t even have enough sexy moments to make it worthwhile watching! Sigh.

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Speed (1994)

Yaaaas. This is more like it! There’s a bus with a bunch of explosives attached to it, and they’ll detonate if the bus goes slower than 50mph. Sandra Bullock is in charge of driving and Keanu’s trying to save everyone. It has some amazingly cheesy one-liners and really, what more can you ask from a 90s action movie?

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Rocketman (2019)

This is the movie of the moment, isn’t it? I’ll be straight, I didn’t love it. I enjoyed it plenty, and Taron Egerton is an absolute legend, but the story was all over the place, and so repetitive. He’s performing…now he’s in a fantasy sequence…now it’s all getting out of hand…now he’s waking up hungover. Rinse and repeat for 2 hours. It was fun, but I don’t see how it’s different from other movies like it. #sorrynotsorry

In case you missed any, I did full reviews for these movies that I watched in May:
Long Shot (2019)
Pokemon Detective Pikachu (2019)
John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum (2019)
Destination Wedding (2018)
Aladdin (2019)
It (2017)

Hidden Bodies by Caroline Kepnes

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If you’ve watched the Netflix series ‘You’ starring Penn Badgley and you’re desperate for more, this book is what you need! It’s the next book in the series and I assume what Season 2 of You will be all about. I almost didn’t read it so I could watch the next season without knowing anything, but I haven’t binged a show so quickly for a few years and I really did want to know what Joe did next.

If you have a quick look at reviews on Goodreads or Amazon it’s quite interesting to see a big mix of 1* and 5* reviews – it’s certainly a book that has divided the fans. I can’t comment on differences between Hidden Bodies and the first book because I haven’t read it, so I only had the show to use as a comparison.

It’s probably because of seeing the show, to be honest, but I couldn’t shake the feeling of how perfect a casting choice Penn Badgley was. I don’t think he’s well known outside of Gossip Girl and I hope this show lands him a few bigger roles. He plays a disturbed character almost scarily well!

Hidden Bodies introduces Joe’s new girlfriend, Amy, who on paper seems like a perfect match for him. She shares his love of books and hatred of social media. She doesn’t even use a normal smartphone – favouring burner phones that she regularly dumps. I guess it was a surprise to no one but Joe when Amy ran away with his most expensive books. Of course, Joe’s got some fantastic detective skills so he’s quickly able to work out that she’s running to Los Angeles, and so he starts his hunt.

I’m firmly in the group of 5* reviewers. I loved every single page of this book and only stopped reading each night when I literally couldn’t keep my eyes open any longer. It’ll be interesting to see how the show will differ, in particular with the ending. For me, the end of Hidden Bodies was a definite end to Joe’s story – but if the show has gathered a lot of attention I wonder if it’ll be left open for another season? I certainly wouldn’t put it past Netflix to do that – just look at 13 Reasons Why!

Mini Reviews: Movies Watched in April

I’ve barely been on the blog for the last week. I was so desperate to avoid spoilers for Avengers: Endgame and Game of Thrones that I had a bit of a technology shut down! As a result, I haven’t done as many full reviews as I normally would, so here’s a quick rundown of what I watched in April and what I thought:

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Unicorn Store (2017)

I’ve wanted to see Unicorn Store ever since another blogger wrote about it after it’s festival premiere 2 years ago, so I was giddy when I found out it dropped onto Netflix without any warning in April! It lived up to all my expectations, it was cute, it was weird, it was colourful, and Brie Larson and Samuel L Jackson have the most amazing friendship! Definitely not a movie for everyone but I honestly feel like I was the target audience for it.

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Baby Mama (2008)

Straight after watching Unicorn Store I spotted the poster for Baby Mama on Netflix. A movie starring Tina Fey and Amy Poehler about motherhood that I hadn’t seen yet or even heard of?! Sign me up! It wasn’t the greatest comedy out there by a long shot but you can always count on these leading ladies to make you laugh. I’m still kind of kicking myself for not seeing the obvious twists coming, though.

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Cam (2018)

You can put Cam straight onto a list of movies you should never watch on public transport! I’m so glad my husband was too engrossed in his game to pay much attention to what I was doing because he straight up would have thought I was watching porn. This movie was quite a surprise though. I wish there was a better explanation for it all at the end but if you’re a fan of Black Mirror this movie was made for you.

someone-great-2019-netflix-movie-review

Someone Great (2019)

This was one of those ‘Oh let’s see what’s new on Netflix, that looks like some trashy fun’ kind of movie picks. Jane the Virgin broke up with her boyfriend, she’s leaving town soon and her best buds get together for one last time. It was fun enough but everything about it screamed ‘Millennial’ and as one myself I couldn’t tell if it was trying to appeal to me or take the piss out of me.

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Step Brothers (2008)

So last month I ignored everyone and watched Holmes & Watson, and it was just as terrible as you all said. It brought up memories of Step Brothers though, a movie I haven’t seen in 10 years, and I couldn’t remember any of it. It wasn’t the legendary comedy I thought it was back in its day but it was a lot of fun and reminded me that Will Ferrel doesn’t always do awful movies.

Of course, I did still do a few full reviews in April, and if you missed any you can find them here:

Dumbo (2019)
Life Itself (2018)
Pet Sematary (2019)
Missing Link (2019)
Frank & Lola (2016)
I, Daniel Blake (2016)
Heat (1995)
Escape Room (2019)

Mini Reviews: Movies Watched in March

March has been one of my best movie watching months for a long time now! My home life in general is looking up again, I’ve been able to make it to the cinema a whopping 7 times and when I’ve stayed home I’ve felt awake enough to actually sit through a whole movie. That all sounds very normal I know, but I’ve had a rocky start to the year so it’s so nice to be feeling normal again!

Anyway, as per usual it’s too time-consuming to write a full review for everything that I watch, so here is a collection of mini reviews for the movies I watched in March but haven’t mentioned on the blog yet.

mini-review-isnt-it-romantic-2019-netflix

Isn’t It Romantic (2019)

Will we ever get bored with the ‘head injury causes weird and magical things to happen’ genre? I don’t think I will, because this entry by Rebel Wilson was surprisingly good! It’s a rom-com that makes fun of rom-coms and although it starts to lose its charm towards the end it’s still a decent comedy. I’ll never be able to hear the word ‘beguiling’ without laughing though now.

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Holmes & Watson (2018)

I’m pretty sure everyone who watched this movie said it was the worst movie of 2018. So why did I watch it? I kind of love Will Ferrell, and comedy can be really subjective so I thought there was a chance I might enjoy it. No – you were all right, it was terrible. The worst part is that my husband actually kind of loved it and keeps quoting vulgar lines from it around the house.

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Happy Death Day (2017)

I avoided it for so long because I assumed it would be one of those fairly terrible horrors riddled with pointless jump scares. Thankfully, the bloggerverse correctly informed me it’s more of a comedy, and the sequel is kind of awesome, so I listened to you all and gave it a go. It started off a little scary but other than that it’s not bad at all. I actually liked the sequel even more!

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What Men Want (2019)

Taraji P. Henson is an absolute queen, but not even she could save this mess. It takes way too long before her character is able to hear the thoughts of all the men around her, and although it gets funnier from that point, it was a bit of a case of too little, too late. Tracy Morgan is basically playing Tracy Jordan and all I took home was the feeling that I wanted to rewatch 30 Rock.

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Fisherman’s Friends (2019)

Yes, I willingly went to the cinema to watch a bunch of old guys living in Cornwall sing sea shanties. It was a slow week for new releases, and I’ve spent a lot of time in Cornwall over the years on holiday so I gave it a chance. I was the youngest audience member by at least 30 years but do you know what? It wasn’t half bad. Your typical, charming little British movie.

In case you missed any, these are the movies I watched in March that actually got proper reviews:

Cold Pursuit (2019)
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018)
Magic in the Moonlight (2014)
Captain Marvel (2019)
Saving Private Ryan (1998)
Triple Frontier (2019)
Memoirs of a Geisha (2005)
Happy Death Day 2U (2019)
Us (2019)