Lists

Best and Worst Movies of 2020…so far!

Can you believe we’re halfway through the shitstorm that is 2020? I like to do a little mid-year best and worst post but for a while, I thought it wasn’t going to be possible. Thanks to plenty of cinema visits before lockdown and the joys of Netflix, I can confidently say I’ve seen enough movies to give you a list of the 5 Best and 5 Worst movies of 2020 so far. With Mulan and Tenet pushed back AGAIN, who knows when the next big release will be?

I watched Hamilton (2020) on Disney+ between choosing which movies would feature in this list and actually sitting down to write it, so it’s excluded for now. I guess there’s an argument to be made that it isn’t a movie, but that’s an argument for another day.

Let’s kick off with the 5 worst movies of 2020 so far, shall we?

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#5 Bloodshot

I doubt I would have even watched this if it weren’t for lockdown. Vin Diesel isn’t my cup of tea and the movie trailer didn’t excite me. The actual movie itself wasn’t bad, just painfully average in every way. It would have been a solid 6 or 7 out of 10 if it came about 10 years ago, but action movies like this have moved on.

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#4 Dolittle

Since writing my full review of Dolittle I have learned that Robert Downey Jr was meant to be doing a Welsh accent. Oh. Wales is about an hour drive away from me, and my boss is Welsh. I really should have been able to detect that accent. Yikes.

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#3 Artemis Fowl

Artemis Fowl is on par with Dolittle for the most WTF moment in a children’s movie. Dolittle had a grown man pulling objects out of a dragon’s butt, Artemis Fowl had Josh Gad widen his jaw enough to burrow using his mouth and fart out dirt. I don’t know what more to tell you, guys.

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#2 365 Days

I haven’t mentioned it yet but yes, I watched 365 Days. It’s surely the most-watched movie on Netflix by now. I never thought I would see the day that I could say I would watch something with a worse story than Fifty Shades…but here we are. Those…naughty scenes were quite something though, weren’t they?

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#1 Brahms: The Boy II

You know what? I’m still salty about this sequel. I kind of loved the original movie for thinking out of the box and I was optimistic about seeing more. The Boy II basically just pretends the first movie didn’t exist and was full to the brim of modern horror movie cliches. Brahms deserved better.

2020 hasn’t been a complete disaster (yet) in terms of movies however. I found no trouble picking 5 movies that I loved enough to award them the title of best so far, and I present them to you now.

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#5 Extraction

I’ll admit, by the end of the year Extraction will probably fall into the category of ‘good’, but for now, it most definitely ‘good’ enough to feature in this list. I was expecting an average, run of the mill action movie and a chance to drool over Chris Hemsworth for a couple of hours. Instead, I got a decent story, characters I cared about, and a huge action scene that wouldn’t have looked out of place in a John Wick movie.

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#4 The Invisible Man

One of the last movies I got to see at the cinema before they all closed. This was such a good experience, watching it on the big screen with nowhere to hide when the tension got too high. I’m normally very quiet at the cinema but that restaurant scene? I gasped VERY loudly.

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#3 Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn)

Warner Bros’ marketing department have a lot to answer for here. They failed to promote their own, promising movie and then tried to blame anyone but themselves when it flopped at the box office. Margot Robbie fits this role perfectly, and it’s full of fun, colourful action scenes from the very beginning. I’ve watched it 3 times now and it’s a blast every time.

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#2 Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga

Jaja…DING DONG. I’m not sorry for ranking Eurovision so high. It was a solid 8/10 when I watched it and I love it even more almost 2 weeks after watching it. It’s everything I need it to be. It’s funny, it has a touching story, it has songs way catchier than Frozen 2 (I mean it) and did I mention that 4 men ripped Dan Stevens’ shirt off? I love it.

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#1 The Gentlemen

This was the first movie I saw at the cinema in 2020 and when I came out, I had to sleep on my feelings. It felt like a solid 10/10, but could I really give the first movie of the year full marks? Turns out yes. Yes I can. The Gentlemen is brilliant. Hugh Grant is disgustingly phenomenal in his role, and not only did Matthew McConnaughey not get on my nerves like he always does…I really loved his character and what he stood for. It was so much fun, and it’s going to take a lot to knock this off the top spot at the end of the year.

Lists

Best and Worst Amy Poehler Movies

I had so much fun writing my Best and Worst Will Ferrel Movies post a couple of months ago, I’ve been looking for an excuse to write another. For these kinds of posts, I usually head over to IMDB and check birthday dates because trying to pick an actor or actress out of thin air is virtually impossible. Turns out it’s one of my favourite comedic actress’ birthday today so I’m presenting you with my Best and Worst Amy Poehler Movies!

Her favourite role of mine will always be Leslie Knope from Parks & Recreation. That show grew to be my most loved TV show of all time, and Leslie is just one of those characters who I admire and relate to so much. If you’ve never watched Parks & Rec please, please give it a go! As of the time of this post being published I’m pretty sure it’s on Netflix. The first Season is slow to get into (but short!) but a few episodes into Season 2, I guarantee you’ll be hooked if you’ve stuck it out that far.

Anyway, I’m talking movies today. So without further ado, these are my 3 favourite Amy Poehler movies:

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Sisters (2015)

If Amy Poehler and Tina Fey are together, you’re guaranteed to have a good time. The way they bounce off each other is simply brilliant, and after their short appearance at the Oscars I hope one day they’ll present the whole night! Sisters is one of those comedies that can be hilarious if you’re in the right mood. Poehler and Fey play sisters (funnily enough) who are summoned to clean out their childhood bedroom so that their parents can sell the house. It’s rude, it’s funny, and there are plenty of cameos to spot, too!

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Wet Hot American Summer (2001)

This one is worth a watch for the cast alone! I only watched it myself for the first time recently so seeing a baby faced Paul Rudd and Bradley Cooper was a funny experience. The movie itself is basically the crazy antics of a summer camp, full of romance, mischief, and ending with a big talent competition. I might just make this movie a summer tradition.

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Inside Out (2015)

No prizes for guessing Inside Out would be my favourite. There aren’t many Disney/Pixar movies I don’t love but this one struck a chord with me like no other. Casting is so important when it comes to animation, and especially so when the animated characters are, in fact, emotions. Amy Poehler voices Joy, and I couldn’t think of anyone else more perfect for the role!

Now I’ve spread positiveness and love all over this post, time to highlight a couple of stinkers…

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The House (2017)

You could make the argument that The House was just a ‘meh’ movie rather than a bad one, but I was so disappointed that it wasn’t anywhere near as good as I hoped! Amy Poehler, Will Ferrell (that’s an odd coincidence, actually) and a whole bunch of familiar faces from Parks & Rec, together in one movie? Combined with a trailer that never failed to make me laugh, no matter how many times I saw it? I was so excited. And it turned out to be such an unforgettable movie.

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Wine Country (2019)

And speaking of promising casts, let’s look no further than this year’s Netflix release, Wine Country. You know how I said Amy Poehler and Tina Fey together was a guaranteed good time? I guess there’s always an exception to the rule. The story itself was interesting enough, but Wine Country was far from a good comedy.

So, judging by my Will Ferrel post, this is the part where you all tell me about an amazing movie that I haven’t even heard of, let alone watched. Last time, many of you told me about a great Will Ferrell flick, Stranger Than Fiction (2006). For the record, I haven’t seen it yet, but I plan to this week. What’s your favourite Amy Poehler movie?

Lists

Best & Worst Will Ferrell Movies

It’s been ages since I did a list like this but I haven’t watched any movies whilst I’ve been feeling ill – and I find myself in a writing kind of mood so with no reviews to write it seemed like a good time to make a list. IMDB tells me that today is Will Ferrell’s birthday, so what better time to look back at my 5 favourite movies of his, and point out his worst!

Has Will Ferrell played a serious role yet? I’ve seen quite a few of his movies but they’ve all been comedies. As we all know, comedy is hugely subjective, so some of you might disagree with my list entirely, but where would the fun be if we all had the same opinion? I don’t know what my first Will Ferrell movie was, but generally, I think he’s a really funny guy. He was great in The Office in the small role he played, and he’s one of those actors who will always draw me to a movie if he’s in it.

In the last few years, it seems he’s turned his hand towards producing, with a number of projects in the works, but I hope he has an acting role in those projects too! Here are my favourite movies that he’s starred in:

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#5 Daddy’s Home (2015)

This stupid movie grew on me for sure. When I first watched it I wasn’t impressed, and apart from the last scene at the school dance I didn’t find it that funny, but then on one of the flights during my honeymoon we were on one of the older planes with the TV screens in the aisles, and I found myself forced to watch it for a second time. Maybe I was just in a better mood, or maybe it was the free food, but I really enjoyed it upon a rewatch! The sequel was trash though, sadly.

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#4 Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004)

I might be wrong, but I’ve always thought that Ron Burgundy is the role that Will Ferrell is most famous for. I have to admit, I haven’t watched Anchorman for years but I watched it a lot when I was in college and still remember a lot of the lines. It feels like one of those rare comedies that seems to have wide appeal, I’m yet to find someone who didn’t like it…until now maybe?

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#3 The Lego Movie (2014)

I’m still mad that the Academy snubbed this movie! Anyway, I’ve always loved animated movies and I have huge respect for the actors and actresses who can do voice work so well. It’s something I think a lot of people assume is an easy thing to do, but I’ve watched a lot of interviews and read a lot about the work that goes into it, and it sounds tough. Will Ferrell provides the voice of the evil Lord Business here, as well as an in-person role at the end of the movie.

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#2 Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (1997)

Thank you, Dad, for introducing me to Austin Powers when I was a kid. I love those movies so much! They are a must watch if you’ve never seen them before. Will Ferrell only plays a very small role as an Egyptian henchman of Dr. Evil, but his role is one of the most memorable, especially when he is sentenced to death after causing Mr. Bigglesworth the cat to lose all his fur. “I’m still alive! But very badly burned…”

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#1 Elf (2003)

How could my #1 choice be any other movie? I’ll never forget watching this movie for the first time…at the cinema…for my brother’s birthday…in an empty screen…because it was the middle of January! Why was the cinema still playing Elf?! Who knows, but I think I’ve watched it every Christmas since. Buddy the Elf is my spirit animal.

I guess the general rule is that when it’s your birthday, everyone has to be nice to you, but then there are birthday beatings! So, with that in mind, let me share Will Ferrell’s worst movie…

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Holmes & Watson (2018)

Even the poster for this movie annoys me. So much about this movie annoyed me! It actually started on a visual joke that really tickled me, and I had hope that I would be one of the few who would enjoy the rest. Then it gradually got worse and worse until I was actually groaning at some of the jokes. Believe the reviews guys, it really is that bad. I expected so much better!

Over to you guys though…what’s your favourite and least favourite Will Ferrell movie?

Lists

Best & Worst Movies of 2019…So Far!

We’re halfway through the year (can you believe it?!) and summer has well and truly arrived in the UK…in the sense that it’s kind of warm, but won’t stop raining. At least it’s an excuse to hide indoors and see all the blockbusters! I feel like 2019 has been a great year for movies so far. It’s had its fair share of stinkers and disappointments for sure, but on the whole I’ve really enjoyed the 2019 releases I’ve seen. In fact, if I check out my Letterboxd ratings, I’ve got 3 five-star movies for the year, compared with none at this point in 2018!

In true blogger fashion, I thought this would mark the perfect time to pick my Top 5 Best and Worst movies of the year so far. Shall we start with the duds? It’s always nice to end on a high note!

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#5 Someone Great

I really wanted to love this movie. I knew not to expect something award-worthy, or a completely original plot that would blow me away, but the cast is impressive and if nothing else I thought I was guaranteed a lot of laughs. Unfortunately, it was a disappointment. It had its moments but it mostly felt like the movie was just trying to take the piss out of Millennials.

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#4 What Men Want

Taraji P. Henson being an absolute badass in a comedy where she can hear men’s thoughts? What could possibly go wrong? It took far too long for the movie to get going, and although it started to pick up steam eventually I’d lost interest at that point. Tracy Morgan was pretending he was actually starring in an episode of 30 Rock.

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#3 Wine Country

It’s still too soon, I’m not sure I can even talk about Wine Country. Some of my favourite comedic actresses getting together and getting drunk should have been a match made in heaven, so why was it so damn boring? I’m starting to get very suspicious of Netflix Original comedies…

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#2 Wonder Park

This stupid movie made me cry for no purpose whatsoever. If you’re a fan of theme parks and really want to watch a budget, crap version of Inside Out then here’s your perfect movie. I still don’t know why it’s even called Wonder Park when the park in the actual movie is called Wonderland. Arggghhh!

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#1 Serenity

I’ve just realised I never even wrote a mini-review of this movie, let alone anything structured. In fact, I almost gave Serenity a pass because it’s at that level of terrible where I actually had a lot of fun watching it. There’s a good movie in here somewhere, but wow, what a plot twist. Just don’t do what I do and start to read deeper into it, because that’s when it really derails. I’m not sure anything will be able to top this by the end of the year!

I could have quite easily done a list of 10 Best movies of the year so far, which means doing it at the end of the year is going to be horribly difficult. I’ve just enjoyed a lot of movies so far this year! My honourable mentions go to Aladdin, Booksmart, Instant Family, Isn’t It Romantic, Long Shot, Missing Link, Us, Captain Marvel, and Fighting with My Family for narrowly missing out on a spot.

So, without further ado, here are what I’ve deemed the best movies of 2019 so far:

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#5 Shazam!

So many of my reviews this year have started with me saying how pleasantly surprised I’ve been with a movie. With the rubbish released in previous years, I never thought I’d have a DC movie in my top list! I was so hesitant about Shazam!, it looked funny but it also looked a bit dumb in the trailer, but I was overwhelmed. I laughed so much in the cinema and I didn’t expect it to have so much heart too – I’ve seen it twice already.

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#4 Pokemon Detective Pikachu

When Detective Pikachu was announced what feels like 10 years ago, I groaned. As someone who grew up with the trading cards, TV show and videogames, I was dying for a live-action Pokemon movie but not one revolved around a Pikachu with a detective hat. But oh my god. I was sold once the first trailer came in. I know the non-Pokemon fans didn’t enjoy it much, but for me, there’s so much fan service involved that I was grinning the whole time.

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#3 Toy Story 4

I’ve only reviewed this very recently so I’ll keep this one short, major kudos to Pixar for not only making an incredible original and 3 amazing sequels. I thought Toy Story 3 gave the movie a perfect ending but number 4 went one better.

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#2 Avengers: Endgame

My Top 2 keep changing minute by minute. In fact, I’ve changed the order at least 5 times just whilst writing this post. Ask me tomorrow and I’ll have changed my mind again. There was no doubt in my mind though that Endgame would be amazing. Marvel just have this movie making down to fine art now, and what a perfect ending this was for the current Avengers line up. It’s a good job it’s being re-released next week because I didn’t make the full movie without a toilet break and I still don’t know what I missed!

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#1 John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum

I know. I know I put John Wick above Endgame. “It’s only because of Keanu Reeves!” I can hear you all saying. You’re probably right. But if you asked me which of 2019’s movies I’ve enjoyed the most so far, it’s going to be Parabellum every time. I saw it twice at the cinema and I’m looking forward to a DVD release so I can watch it again. Those choreographed fight scenes are just perfect, and it’s ruined every other action movie for me. I’m dying to see Chapter 4!

Enough about me, over to you guys…what’s been your Best & Worst of the year so far? Is it feeling like a good year for movies?

Lists

Top 10 Worst Movies of 2018

It’s that time of the year already, just before the awards season really kicks in when bloggers everywhere are posting their Top 10s for the year. I’ve always gone by UK release dates for my lists as we often have to wait weeks for a lot of releases, but honestly, it’s so hard to keep track of so this year I’ll be using the general release date. What I’d like to do then is revisit my list later in the year when I’ve caught up on more movies.

Let’s save the best for last and kick off with this year’s stinkers. I think I’ve done quite well to avoid a lot of the bad movies this year but I still managed to put a list of 10 together without any troubles.

Some of these are simply terrible, others are disappointments, and a couple just weren’t for me.

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#10 The House with a Clock in Its Walls

Cate Blanchett was the only real saving grace of this movie. I’m also still plagued by nightmares of Jack Black’s head on a baby’s body.

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#9 Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom

I had decent expectations for this sequel, but the second half was so ridiculous I found myself laughing for all the wrong reasons.

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#8 Red Sparrow

You know – I can’t even remember anything about this movie. It was slutty and it had spies…and that’s the best I can do.

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#7 The Commuter

I love all of Liam Neeson’s action movies, even if they are all kind of the same. This one, however, was just boring!

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#6 The Old Man & the Gun

I’m sorry – I know lots of people loved this movie. It’s just…for a heist movie it was quiet, slow and dull.

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#5 Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald

JK Rowling needs to step up her game. I hope the backlash this movie got makes her look really hard about how this series moves forward. Perhaps she could start by reading her own books again.

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#4 Life of the Party

Another year, another Melissa McCarthy comedy that I’m either going to love or hate. You can all guess where this one fell.

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#3 Fifty Shades Freed

Confession – the Fifty Shades series is a bit of a guilty pleasure of mine. However, I didn’t really love the third book and the movie was even worse.

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#2 How It Ends

Hey Netflix, if you’re going to make a post-apocalyptic movie without a real ending, how about you don’t call it How It Ends?!

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#1 The Happytime Murders

Melissa McCarthy, you messed up twice in one year. I’m so, so mad about The Happytime Murders because it could have been brilliant, and witty. Instead, it was just vulgar and unfunny.

I’ll be back early next week with my Top 10 Best Movies of 2018!