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What are you watching? 2019 edition


It’s been a while since I’ve seen it, but isn’t that what the Stallone one did?


Yeah, and it had Mean Machine…so it was pretty 10/10


Second half of the film was in the Cursed Earth with the Angel gang.

Mean Machine was amazing, but they should’ve done something to his voice. It sounded too normal.


Really, if you’d have put Karl Urban into this setting/aesthetic then you’d got something


Have you got a source for that? Because the film was produced by DNA and literally every other success they’ve had was 2D. It would seem an odd demand for them.


I think we differ strongly on why it failed commercially.

The marketing was awful and I think The Raid coming out before it and getting a lot of positive attention really killed off the impact of what must have seemed like a really good concept in production.

I know Wagner believes they got the movie absolutely spot on.

I don’t think it was great, but I think they did a very good job of capturing early Dredd (the satirical and humour came later when Wagner and Grant started working together) and it has a lot of fans out there for that reason.

There’s a lot of stories that can be told though, humour, horror, action, drama - and there’s plenty of source material. This is where my hope for the potential of the series comes in.


I think it was awful marketing too, but not inaccurate. What would you have sold that’s actually in the film?

My point is that they left out anything distinctive. Anderson being psychic is just about the only thing left that separates this from other future cop movi…

Ok… scratch that. It’s not very distinctive either.

I like the film, but as someone who’d read the comics as a teenager I was already onside. Someone new had less incentive to check it out.


The film itself makes you wonder what the studio was expecting. Annihilation is not a perfect film by any means, and the climax may be a bit artsy and open-ended for some poeple, but it’s all coherent which is what matters. Maybe they were hoping for a faster pace and more action; the budget was somewhat high. I don’t know how they could have been expecting a smash hit from the material though. It’s very possible Gareth is right and the Netflix deal was more or less a wash from what they projected to make in the UK.

I’m glad I saw it on the big screen as parts of it seemed made for that, but at the same time free is free.


I go the chance to catch Get Out on cable …

Creepy to me.


New episodes of The Tick. Fantastic man vs dog fight.


The second half of the first season was great. The first first half was fantastic though, but all together it’s been a really entertaining season.

Can’t wait for Season 2 next year.


The most recent trailer certainly makes it look pretty action-packed, so I wouldn’t be surprised if that were the case. I saw the trailer with my dad before we saw The Post, and after telling him how much I was anticipating it I had to explain that earlier trailers made it look a lot more eerie and thoughtful.

Not that either of us thinks there’s anything wrong with action-packed, but that’s not what I’d been selling the movie to him as.


I felt Annihilation was a perfect movie. It’s everything I want from sci-fi. I walked out of the theater and everything felt slightly different. That mood stayed with me as I walked down quiet streets toward the bus, and then again as I walked down equally quiet streets to my apartment.


Flew international this week so ended up watching a lot of movies.

Happy Death Day - a slasher version of Groundhog Day written by Scott Liddell. It’s terrible. The concept works fine, the problem is entirely the execution. There needs to be several repeats before the character starts engaging in wacky or crazy behavior. Here it happens almost immediately. Meanwhile the lead, who is trying to prevent her own death, never once does anything logical or believable to do so.

Three Billboards - Funny, painful and surprisingly bleak. The end feels a bit abrupt, which only adds to the bleakness of it all.

Murder on the Orient Express - pretty but a bit hollow. Everyone puts in good performances but it still feels a bit flat and disconnected and I’m just not taken with this version of Periot.

The Foreigner - This is a bit of a misfire. There’s a twist that comes fairly late in the film that needs to have not been a twist because before it Chan’s character feeling like he in the wrong. Because of this for much of the film he comes off as the villain, or at least badly misguided, rather than the film’s hero. Also there is not nearly as much action as the advertising would have you believe.

Atomic Blonde - This feels like a film that needed a different choice of director, as it’s a twisty spy thriller trapped in the body of a stylized action movie. The only sequence I thought was appropriate was towards the end, an extended one-shot fight that really drives home the desperation of the situation.

War for the planet of the apes - I can understand why this didn’t do well in theaters. It’s perfectly fine as a movie but the story is just miserable.


THE RITUAL on Netflix - a British horror movie (set in Sweden, mostly) - is something of the opposite case. The story and concept itself is not very well put together but the direction, acting and mood of the movie is quite good. It works even though on paper I would not have cared to see it.

The series VICTORIA on Amazon Prime (probably Masterpiece Theater originally) is not quite as good as THE CROWN, but it is far superior to the film YOUNG VICTORIA which covered a lot of the same ground.

Watched all of LEGION on FX through Hulu and it has a lot of good ideas and moments, but it is mostly style over substance. In the end, I think it needs more traditional set ups and payoffs as much of the story and character’s motivations just don’t follow the logic of the plot. Or, more to the point, characters do what they do simply to keep the plot on path rather than the plot develops from what they do.

However, there is a point at around the last three episodes where it moves fairly well until it just kinda throws everything in the pot in the very last one.


Booh! Booooooh!

You face is mostly style over substance.


I didn’t make it past the second episode.

On Noah Hawley, we finished season 2 of Fargo, which was great. The performances were all pretty much perfect, from the mains (Kirsten Dunst has never been better) to the most minor of characters. Shot beautifully, great soundtrack, highly recommended.

We also watched Thor Ragnarok, after hearing so much about it for a while. It was ok. Lots of laughs, a very different tone to any other Marvel film I’ve seen, great designs and acting. But the story was too busy - it felt like it should have been two movies, since neither half was developed fully. And for once I’ll bag out the CGI - Korg and Hulk both looked really quite bad for a film of this stature in terms of their body and facial movements.

Oh, and we’ve been tuning in to Queer Eye in between - I was a fan of the original, and only last year realised how odd it was that the show just kind of stopped after being an absolute phenomenon initally. It’s good, but heavier on the subjects’ personal stories than the original, with less of the info in infotainment (fewer tips and hints from each of the Fab Five).

I’ve teared up in all four episodes so far.


‘Mute’ isn’t good.

Definitely too episodic, lots of bits that don’t gel.

Jones, perhaps, got too much attention too fast. He hasn’t been able to develop quietly.

There’s a surge of interest every time someone makes something good, like ‘Moon’, but setting most people up as “the next big thing” is setting them up for a fall.

I’d like to see Jones direct something simpler, and something someone else writes.


Stargate Origins: Episodes 4 and 5. Half-way through the run of this season and it is still just way too goofy and shoddily made. Perhaps the only highlight is the actor that they got to play the young version of the Egyptian chieftain from the original movie.

Mainly because he knows exactly what kind of production he is and is the most deliberately slapstick.


I am a little behind the times so I caught some of Wonder Woman on cable…

It was OK and had some good moments. The light show battle at the end didn’t excite me because I’ve seen a lot of energy/light show fights before. Still for Patti Jenkins, it was good that she can take her place among the male directors and get paid equally.

This makes me wonder have we seen enough cinematic epic battles to try something new?