Posts

Review - Terminator: Dark Fate

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Terminator: Dark Fate is the sixth Terminator film, whether you can believe it or not. It's been 35 years since the first one, 28 years since the last one anyone cared about but fortunately, those are the only ones that matter. I know this because I've only seen the first two films and Dark Fate discards all the mess of Rise of the Machines, Salvation and Genisys (they seriously spell it that way, I'm sorry) and reset the franchise. You know, in the way that the last two did. Anyway, Skynet apparently don't exist anymore but some thing called Legion does and it's essentially the same thing, because it keeps sending back Terminators to kill someone who will be important in the future. In this case, that person is a girl named Dani and the resistance have sent back Grace to protect her, a cybernetically enhanced human instead of your bog standard Terminator. At some point, Sarah Connor and Arnie show up, because there has to be some hook to the film. If you have ever…

Review - Parasite

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Parasite won the Palme D'Or at the Cannes Film Festival back in May, which roughly translates to "It won the best award at what is maybe the most important/pretentious film festival in the world". Essentially, huge news for film nerds like me, variably big news if you don't waste your life following film news and media but the point I'm making is that it has been riding a wave of unstoppable hype since then, more so than usual for a film from beloved Korean director Bong Joon-Ho (Snowpiercer, The Host and Okja, among many other gems). I've become a huge fan of the dude over the last year or so and his films range from post-apocalyptic train takeovers to true crime recreations and gonzo B-movie monster flicks, meaning that there is something for absolutely everyone in his remarkably consistent filmography. I don't want to show my cards too early but let's just say that Parasite is more of the same, in that it's nothing like anything that has come b…

Review - The Lighthouse

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Well folks, this is going to be one of those reviews where I figure out how the hell I feel about a film by writing about it. My viewing of The Lighthouse is one that's still relatively fresh with me but by having it stew in my brain for a while, I'm hoping I can work out how the hell I feel about it. The plot is a simple one, at least on the surface. Two men are dropped off on a remote island as lighthouse keepers, there to tend the lighthouse that provides the light that prevents the ruin of ships. Being an island with only two men on it, it's a desolate place. One could almost be forgiven for, I don't know, going a little mad sometimes? What I find interesting about the plot is how sparse it is, while also being almost entirely up for debate. There is very little in the way of traditional plot, yet what there is is fascinatingly vague. Sometimes the "it's all your interpretation" plot annoys me (see The Cloverfield Paradox or Wounds) but when done wel…

Deep Dive - Depression, Anxiety and Melancholy in the Internet Age

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As a lot of you probably know, I'm on a year abroad at the moment, off studying in the crazy world that is Florida. It's very exciting and everything, all these new experiences, but there's a side of it that has acted as a really profound entry point into another side of myself that has seemingly always been there; it can be really, really fucking isolating. Of course, I'm only about two months into it and at this point in my first year of Uni back in Exeter, I was feeling similarly alone, but there is a difference, in that I'm so far away from all I know and completely separated from alcohol, something that allows me to ignore these feelings for a little while. With all that time that sobriety has given me, I've had plenty of time for thinking and self-reflection and while I worry that this post is just going to come across as a narcissistic excuse for free therapy, it isn't that. This is an honest attempt to try and explore what it is I'm feeling and…

Review - El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie

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So, this is a bit odd, isn't it? We're all of a sudden back talking about Breaking Bad, a show whose finale in 2013 was so neatly and perfectly constructed that there was surely no way we would ever get a follow-up. And now, six years later, here is such a follow-up, coming to us as El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie. Before we start digging into this too deeply, I want to say two things. First, if you haven't seen the show, I don't even know what you're doing here. I'm going to try and steer clear of any plot elements but Breaking Bad is a show that deserves to be seen by everyone, as cold as possible, so go away and watch all of it right now. Secondly though, this is a film I did not want to happen and as I write this piece, weigh up the film in my head, that will be sitting over me the whole time. I felt that even with the ambiguity we got from Jesse's ending, it was about as perfect an ending as you can get, so what is the point in telling more story? The…

Review - Joker

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Well, here we are folks, this is where modern life has gotten us. It's 2019 and the most controversial, upsetting, fear-inducing movie of the year is a movie about the bad guy of that rich dude who dresses in leather and punches homeless people, directed by the man who brought us every single God awful Hangover movie. We can get more into all the "society" stuff later if you stick around that long but first, let's try and actually talk about the film, because that's what I'm good at, not broad cultural commentary. The story is of a man named Arthur Fleck, who... Seems off. He has a disorder where he can't stop laughing but it seems like there's more than that, something broken far deeper inside. In the day, he is a long suffering clown-for-hire but in the nights, he's an aspiring comedian, incapable of getting a single laugh. In this position, he becomes more and more downtrodden, being crushed under the grinding wheels of late capitalism in an a…

Review - Ad Astra

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Ad Astra is Apocalypse Now in space, with sad Brad Pitt. It's one of those cases where I have essentially done the entire review in a sentence and I now have to spend three paragraphs pretending that I haven't immediately negated the entire review. To get a little more into the plot, Brad Pitt plays an astronaut called Roy McBride, whose dad has disappeared off into the vast nothingness of space. After suffering a high (like, reallyhigh) altitude fall, he is informed that his dad has gone missing and that no emergency signals are being reached. Obviously, being the best astronaut and having very intimate connections to this lost pilot, Roy is the perfect man for the job! This film being set up and pitched how it is, most people already have a real solid view of how this films shakes out, although I won't spell it out too much if you haven't twigged. It really is Space-pocalypse Now though, with Roy travelling deeper and deeper into the darkness, with the twisted nature…