Searching for a way back from everlasting exile, renegade fallen angels Loki (Matt Damon) and Bartleby (Ben Affleck) attempt to turn the cosmological system on its head – unless an unlikely horde of humans can stop them. Bethany (Linda Fiorentino), the heroine of “Dogma” is a woman convinced her prayers have not been answered when, out of nowhere, a heralding angel appears in her bedroom and declares her the potential saviour of humanity. Setting off on an extraordinary journey, Bethany meets a host of heavenly and hellish characters, including the celestial messenger Metatron (Alan Rickman), an apostle with a 2,000 year old grudge (Chris Rock), hot-headed demon Azrael (Jason Lee) and heavenly muse Serendipity (Salma Hayek). In Kevin Smith’s comic fantasia, angels, demons, apostles and prophets (of a sort) walk among the cynics and innocents of the Earth and battle it out for the fate of humankind.
1999 – Certificate: 15 – American Film
Language: Frequent Strong, Some Coarse. Sex/Nudity: Some Moderate References. Violence: Some, Strong, Fantasy. Other: Comic Fantasy, Religion
8.0 out of 10
Yesterday I underwent a major, surgical procedure; I had my bottom left wisdom tooth removed. Although initially thankful to discover that I’d survived the experience, I was horrified to find out that I got neither a week’s stay in a hospital bed to recover, nor six months’ worth of appointments with a councillor to enable me to cope with the ordeal; I’m pretty sure I’ve got Post Traumatic Stress Disorder from the operation, which took nearly ten, whole minutes! The initial injections, which got shoved into three places, including where my tooth was sorest, are already out of the running for my list of top ten fun things of 2014. Feeling the end of a needle against the side of my tooth somewhere deep inside my gum, was a bit disconcerting. A few minutes later he gave me two more injections. These all left me somewhat numb, along with hundreds of other people who got caught in the anaesthetic blast zone; not that I was complaining, I was just glad to have lost all tactile contact with the outside world. The executioner dentist then started pulling at my tooth. There was a very disconcerting cracking noise at one point, which I remember thinking would have been even more worrying had I been an astronaut in a space capsule. The dentist did make a comment to the effect that I shouldn’t worry about the noise, (although considering he was doing his best to flatten my head at the time with his arm, I don’t suppose there was much I could do anyway). I had visions of my tooth disintegrating, along with most of my jaw and skull. I started imagining that my head would end up resembling a Halloween pumpkin, that sort with a hideously cut out smile, which had gone a bit rotten and started to collapse in on itself. However, the tooth came out in one piece and I was then rewarded with four stitches that were done with such a flourish that I got the distinct feeling the dentist was looking to be scored well on artistic merit by someone. He also rather cruelly said the third was one the last, before adding a fourth. Then I just got booted out of the surgery and left to somehow stagger on my own to the chemist shop for more antibiotics. I also got given the huge, pink pain killers I’d had before too, although as far as I was concerned, there was no pain-killer big enough for what I felt I’d soon need. I thought I’d been pumped full of enough anaesthetic to numb my whole body for months, but it did start to wear off shortly after I got home. It was a bit sore for a few hours, but now it seems to have settled down and it’s not too bad. I imagine most people would describe the sort of discomfort I’m in as “agony”, but I’m not the sort of person to build mountains out of mole hills. I did have a look at my tooth once it had been pulled out, (I made the nurse get it out of the bin), but as the Tooth Fairy does everything online these days, I didn’t feel the need to bring it home to put under my pillow. I guess I could have drilled a hole in it and worn it as a sort of necklace I suppose. The wonderful National Health Service, despite all its ‘issues’, did everything for free, so once the Tooth Fairy has paid up, I should be well in the money. I’m seriously considering selling a few spare organs now. This film highlights two people who want to do something that will end all of existence, but after my traumatic tooth experience, the end of existence seems small beer to me.
I went to a Church School. (Hard to believe I know.) Ever Thursday we had our assembly in the local church, St. Mary’s. This I did all through my primary school education. Despite this, most of the ecumenical stuff mentioned in this film meant nothing to me. Then again, I went to a Protestant church rather than a Catholic one. The biggest difference between the two is if you go to the former and piss about, nothing much happens. If you do the same as the latter, you’ll end up committing a mortal sin and being dammed to spend all of eternity in Purgatory, or worse. I guess that makes you remember things more clearly. This is a great, original and clever comedy that stars a whole range of famous people and characters, from the talented and funny (Alan Rickman) and now mega successful (Matt Damon), to the hugely overrated (Jay and Silent Bob). Alanis Morissette is God, which probably came as a big shock to Morgan Freeman when he turned up to be God some years later in “Bruce Almighty”. Alanis is sexier though and unlike Morgan, got a song into the charts that references oral sex in public. A great film, well worth watching.
There’s quite an array of music used in this movie but weirdly I can’t remember much about it. I guess that means it did it’s job well, or it’s just rubbish.
I rather like the trailer for this film. It makes it look ‘exciting’ and gives an idea of the plot, without really giving anything away. Sounds simple, but many trailers fail this simply test.
Recommended for rebranding consultants, out of work apostles, pole dancers, angels and abortion clinic doctors.
1 decapitation, no cats or chainsaws. Well it’s an exploding head really, but let’s not quarrel about semantics.
Top badass moment? Bethany saves all of existence. Not quite as impressive as my dealing with the trauma of having a wisdom tooth removed yesterday, but it’s still pretty badass.
The battle for Earth continues in this action-packed blockbuster from Michael Bay and executive producer Steven Spielberg. When college-bound Sam Witwicky (Shia LaBeouf) learns the truth about the ancient origins of the Transformers, he must accept his destiny and join Optimus Prime and Bumblebee in their epic battle against the Decepticons, who have returned stronger than ever with a plan to destroy our world.
2009 – Certificate 12 – American Film
Moderate action, violence, language, sex and drug references
8.0 out of 10
This is going to be boring, sorry, as it’s about decorating; I’ll get to the film later on. When I moved into where I live now, nearly eight years ago, everything was painted magnolia. I hate magnolia like I hate the idea of all my limbs suddenly detaching themselves; (well obviously not really, but I’m trying to make a point). The first thing I did when I moved in was paint nearly everything a different colour; hall white, bathroom blue and white, lounge yellow and green. For reasons too complex to go into now, (but basically they revolve around me being too poor and lazy), the bedroom and kitchen never got done; and that’s how things have remained ever since. However, inspired by my washing machine’s recent breakdown (and I still haven’t got around to getting it fixed yet) and the subsequent OH MY GOD horror when confronted with the state of things under and behind the washing machine when I pulled it out from its normal resting place, I’m going to ‘do’ the kitchen. It’s going to be red and white. It’s going to be red and white because the kitchen still boasts all it’s original fixtures and fittings and when I pulled all the horrible sticky plastic off everything it’d been stuck on, those are the colours I found underneath. I hope it doesn’t turn me into a Manchester United fan. This is an especially weak link, but the big tile cutter I’ve bought, with all its levers, moving parts and things, could well be a robot in disguise…
Ever eaten too much ice cream, cake or sweets? The big ‘I can rule the world’ sugar hit followed by the comedown? This film is like that. Two and a half hours of too-fast-to-work-out-what-the-hell-is-going-on-half-the-time action, followed by the dreadful realisation that you’ve just taken several months off your lifespan by wearing your soul out. This is a film that’s wrong in so many ways, but if you ignore all of them and just let the stuff that’s going on in front of you batter you senseless, then it’s actually loads of fun. Enjoy watching what’s basically “Team America: World Police” on steroids. Marvel at Megan Fox’s enormous, ‘porn star’ lips. Relish the challenge of working out which fast-moving bundle of scrap metal is which. To impress your mates with later, memorise Optimus Prime’s “Fate rarely calls upon us at a moment of our choosing” line. Cheer along at every highly unlikely bit of good fortune that comes our heroes’ ways. Be amazed that a load of robots that are huge, clumsy, noisy and trash everything they come into contact with, have managed to stay so well hidden for so long. The highly irritating Sam Witwicky is back, although he’s marginally less irritating this time around, in the same way that a wasp is slightly less irritating than two wasps. Megan Fox is also here again; (I don’t think her character’s got a name, as she’s Megan Fox in a range of tight shorts, so no one really cares about what her character gets up to). On an entirely superficial level (which worked for me), the whole movie looks and sounds great. The special effects are excellent and relentless; whilst it boasts a soundtrack that’s great for pissing off your neighbours. One thing puzzles me though. When I was young, Transformers weren’t “Robots in Disguise”. What they were, were crappy little toys that you quickly lost half the bits for, got annoyed by and soon moved on from. Who are all these people who’re so into them? I’ve never met a single one in my life. When I hear Hasbro, all I can think of are those sticky, disgusting jelly sweets made by Haribo.
Suitably bombastic, the soundtrack does all the things you’d expect it too. It’s not bad.
The trailer is nearly two and a half minutes long, which means you get to see about 1/60th of the film by watching it. Lucky you!
Recommended for robots, students and young women with ‘pouty’ lips. Probably not the best movie for anyone interesting in recruiting new air force or navy pilots; or Egyptians.
No cats, chainsaws or decapitations.
Top badass moment? Despite all the ‘good-guys bad-guys’ stuff going on, the sound of a Transformer saying “bollocks” to a door, works for me. It’s probably the best line in the whole script.
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen at IMDB (6.0 / 10)
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen at Wikipedia
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen at Roger Ebert (1.0 / 5)
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen at YouTube
Academy Award® nominee Viggo Mortensen leads an all-star cast including Guy Pearce, Academy Award® winners Robert Duvall and Charlize Theron and an incredible debut performance from Kodi Smit-McPhee. “The Road” is a thrilling and deeply moving tale of survival as a father and his young son journey across a barren, post apocalyptic America. Respectfully adapted from Cormac McCarthy’s hallowed novel, “The Road” boldly imagines a future in which men are pushed to the worst and the best that they are capable of; a future in which a father and his son are sustained by love.
2009 – Certificate: 15 – USA
Infrequent strong violence, language and gory images
It’s Sunday evening. Monday is Christmas Eve. Unlike most of my colleagues at work and indeed most other people everywhere else around these parts, I’ll be at my desk tomorrow, protecting the planet so the rest of you can enjoy the festive season, secure in the knowledge that the Earth is in safe hands. Scanning the skyline for environmental Armageddon and other unpleasant circumstances, I’ll be poised, like a coiled snake, ready to pounce at a moment’s notice, should someone send in an e-mail for any reason that’s needs answering. I’ve said this before and I’m sure I’ll say it again, but when I’m at work I really do feel like I’m one of the Avengers or part of the Justice League. This movie features a hero too.
The trailer is really quite deceptive (and actually not very good), as it seems to suggest this is some sort of action film. It does have moments, but overwhelmingly it’s slow, quiet and thoughtful, with most of the action involving hiding rather than fighting. I have to admit to having a soft spot for post apocalyptic movies; I think they probably reflect my life in some ways. However, this is possibly the best film I’ve seen for the first time this year. It has few weaknesses. It’s heartbreakingly sad. As you watch an ordinary, decent guy trying to protect his wife and young son from everyone and everything, the hopelessness it presents will pretty well jump out of the screen, sit down and embrace you; eww, gross. With so many superheroes and action-heroes routinely overcoming impossible odds in films, it’s easy to forget that most of us aren’t actually like that and there’s a limit to what we can do. Seeing The Man (none of the characters’ names are ever given) slowly give up more and more of himself and his humanity is depressing beyond words and what few happy moments there are (and “happy” has to be taken to mean better relative to everything else), are quickly crushed. The scene with the wallet and wedding ring is a real killer and the ending will make you want to cry; it did me. The scene when they catch up with the guy who’s stolen their belongings is pretty shattering too. The photography is great. I watched it on a Blu-ray disc and really gets across the whole look and feel of the landscape; everything dead, everything smashed up, looted, burnt out, destroyed, colourless. The whole time it’s damp, cold and miserable, the sun hardly shines and it rains, a lot. (Actually that’s not unlike the view from my lounge window recently, what with the weather and all the fly-tipping around the rubbish bins.) The acting is top draw stuff too. The two main characters spend most of their time sleeping, looking for food, trying to keep warm and walking. This doesn’t sound very interesting, but the script is so good that you’ll want to celebrate whenever they get a bit of luck. The only thing that lets it down slightly is the ending, which has a rather big “why didn’t they” moment. I actually wanted to get something to eat whilst I was watching it, but I felt so bad for the characters that I didn’t; I needed to empathise with their hunger, (although I did draw the line at soaking myself in the shower, opening all the windows and rolling around in the dirt outside in the dark). This is a bleak movie; it offers a few moments of hope, but it’s overwhelmingly a wrist-slasher. It’s also a must-see film. I’m going to buy the book it’s based on.
Recommend for anyone with emotions. Probably not a great film for Christmas Day viewing; or Lieutenant Commander Data.
No cats, chainsaws or decapitations.
Top badass moment? Like Batman, he’s not perfect and he doesn’t have any superpowers, but The Man’s single-minded devotion to protecting his son is pure Badass. Yes, that’s badass with a capital B.
What’s the point of daylight in winter? Even on the odd occasion that it’s sunny, it’s so cold that no one really wants to spent time outside. But most of the time it’s grey, miserable and wet, like today. By 4pm it’s virtually night. It’s so cold, the days are so short and it’s so dark all the time, that nothing grows. Trees and plants have been around a lot longer than humans, so if they think the winter is a waste of time and just go to sleep, I really don’t see that we should be questioning their good judgement. We should hibernate in the winter and enjoy the summer, when we can actually have fun being outside and it’s light for more than 20 minutes a day. If I ever get my hands on a time machine, I’m going to grab myself a good pair of scissors and go back to wherever it was in our evolution that we decided that hibernating was a bad thing and snip off that particular evolutionary branch before it goes anywhere. Trust me, you’d thank me for it. This film is all about time travel and snipping off our evolutionary branch right here, right now; (well 1997 actually, but who’s counting)?
1995 – Certificate: 15 – USA
Good, another film about animal rights weirdos. Seven years before trying to turn everyone into zombies in “28 Days Later”, here they are apparently trying to “erase humanity from the planet”. They never want to do anything nice, do they? (The irony being, we seem to be doing a good job of this ourselves, anyway, without any ‘help’). Bloody hippies; I bet they all enjoy a McDonald’s double flesh-burger with calf-stomach rennet cheese when they think no one’s looking. So throw in a bit of time-travel and a moody Bruce Wills and what do you get? A decent, if sometimes confusing, slightly too clever for its own good, sci-fi film, with a couple of horrendous one-line plot contrivances that appear to have been added in a desperate attempt to stop the story smashing into a dead-end, from which there would be no escape. Image someone marooned on the Moon, air running out and with no chance of rescue, then suddenly coming across the remains of one of the lunar models from the 70s in which there’s not only a supply of air, but also an engine capable of allowing it to be piloted back to Earth safely, including a manual, in a language the guy understands of course, to teach him how to do this; with none of this being explained other than by something like the guy thinking, “wow, aliens must have done all this, lucky for me.” I didn’t really like either of the main characters either. Bruce Willis had a bit of an excuse, his character being a bit distressed and having a somewhat difficult lifestyle and everything, but I really wanted to strangle Madeleine Stowe’s Dr Kathryn Railly. For someone who was meant to be an experienced and well thought of psychiatrist, she managed to turn into a rambling idiot bimbo at the drop of a hat. And what on Earth did she like about Bruce’s character; god, there’s hope for me yet. However, it is a decent film, despite all that, with the secret, special ingredient that Terry Gilliam adds to all the films he makes; I’m not sure if it’s good for you but I could definitely taste it. A bit like what Colonel Sanders puts into Kentucky Fried Chicken to try to disguise what it is and make it edible, probably.
Recommended for animal right activists. Not recommended for monkey enthusiasts, as there aren’t 12 in it; in fact I’m not sure they’re any in it. Sounds like an e-mail to Trading Standards might be in order.
No cats, chainsaws or decapitations.
Top badass moment? I’m struggling a bit here, but I’m going for Bruce bashing the hell out of a pissed-off pimp with an old-fashioned telephone. I’d like to see someone do that much damage with a modern, hands-free set or mobile. It’s good to talk, but clearly even better to bash someone’s brains out with a phone. That’ll stop the silent calls and salesman ringing. Finding a way to combat the latter is most certainly badass.
Ever watched any of those TV ads, which always seem to feature a young and good-looking guy in a white shirt and tie, sitting on a train with loads of space around him? The ones where it’s sunny outside and the train is passing through some beautiful countryside, which the guy in the shirt glances at contentedly whilst he works away on a laptop, looking happy and in control, as he drinks his complementary and delicious cup of coffee and deals with his important but achievable workload? Well that’s total bollocks. I’ve spend a lot of time recently sitting on trains trying to work on a laptop and its had about as much in common with that image, as someone sweeping the floor in an aircraft hangar has with Tom Cruise in “Topgun”. So here’s a reality check.
1) The trains are always over-crowded and no one looks happy.
2) You always have to chuck someone out of the seat you’ve booked, who’s always the person most genuinely in need of a seat on the whole train; typically a heavily pregnant but exceedingly fray old lady, who’s often from a Black or Asian community too, so that everyone else on the train can brand you both a bastard and a racist.
3) You can never plug your laptop in anywhere; there either isn’t a plug, or someone else is using it and will defend it to the death if need be. You’d have more chance of negotiating a peace treaty between North and South Korea.
4) The tables are too narrow to have the screen at the right angle or the keyboard in the right place; and there’s always some other poor sod sitting on the other side of the table trying to use a laptop too; and the nightmarish possibly that the backs of the lids might accidentally touch one another, would feel not unlike experiencing your best mate suddenly touching you ‘inappropriately’ and declaring he’s always loved you.
5) You’re always stressed out because you’ve got too much work to do. Internet access costs nearly £5 for an hour and at best is annoyingly intermittent and slow, so you end up having to close and reopen Outlook loads of times in an effort to send or receive any e-mail. And don’t even think you can use a mouse, as the train’s movement will result in your clicking on everything but what you wanted and a screen full of usless boxes and windows that you’ve then got to try to close, an equally futile exercise that just perpetuates the nightmare. And if you saved the link your mate sent you last week for that comedy bestiality gay porn website, you can be sure you’ll accidently click on it and everyone in the carriage with hear your tinny laptop speakers blare out the fact, confirming in their minds that you’re a social deviant as well as being a bastard and a racist, and probably a paedophile too. Your only defence against all this is that the chance of you actually finding a suitable space in which to move a mouse around, is rather less than that of the Earth suddenly exploding right now… nope, we’re still here. (And here’s a friendly bit of advice; don’t bother trying to use your mouse on your thigh, it doesn’t work and after it’s fallen on the floor with a loud clatter a few times, everyone will be adding stupidity to your growing lists of crimes.)
6) The person sitting opposite you always has a better laptop that makes you feel like a Luddite and failure, as you look at your scratched Dell with its broken bit of trim in the corner; whilst his is miraculously in pristine condition, despite its apparently nomadic existence; they’re nearly always Macs too; does Apple pay people to travel on trains just to make it look like it has a bigger market share than it really does?
7) The weather is always wet and horrible; or really bright and the sun shines directly onto the screen of your laptop, rendering it unreadable.
8) The person next to you acts as if he’s Beelzebub’s cousin and insists on staking his claim to every square nanometre of his allotted space; even using his bag and jacket to build something akin to the Berlin Wall between you and him. The unspoken threat this leaves hanging in the air will lead you to prefer the option of wetting yourself, rather than ask him to move so you can go to the toilet.
9) If the person next to you is a woman, she will continually use body language that strongly suggests the world’s most evil-smelling pervert has just sat next to her. Unlike Beelzebub’s cousin, she will attempt to curl up in as small a space as possible, mathematically as far from you as she can, whilst texting her mates non-stop to tell them of her ongoing trauma.
10) The coffee is mediocre, costs £2.20 and comes in a paper cup.
This film is set in 1972. Before laptops existed. (And I really actually like trains.)
1991 – Certificate: PG – USA
Before I watched this film I couldn’t remember anything about it or why I’d bought it. Neither the overview nor the trailer suggested that it’s going to be anything other than a fairly crappy, 90s, mainstream Hollywood romantic/family comedy with a precocious, ‘Hollywood-style’ kid in it. An evening of British stoicism beckoned, as I looked forward to 98 minutes of mediocre averageness. But when a film starts with an 11-year-old girl speaking directly into the camera, claiming to have caught haemorrhoids and explaining how her breasts are developing at different rates and that means she’s got cancer, does suggest that it’s going to have more balls that it ought to. (Sorry if that all sounds a bit Jimmy Savilley, it’s not meant to.) For a PG rated film, I bet that freaked out a few parents in the cinema! It’s basically a film about death, a suitable depressing topic that probably explains why I bought it in the first place. In the end, it still turned out to be a 90s, mainstream Hollywood romantic/family comedy with a precocious, ‘Hollywood-style’ kid in it, but at times it’s also a genuinely touching and powerful bit of drama. The adults are more or less cardboard cut-out characters, but the kids make the film come alive and the script’s surprising subtle. It’s got a good soundtrack too. (Problem is, I still can’t get used to Dan Aykroyd not hunting ghosts, or Jamie Lee Curtis not fighting Michael Myers.)
Recommended for people who want to revisit the experience of losing someone they love.
No cats, decapitations or chainsaws.
Top badass moment? Vada sulking in the supermarket and throwing can after can from the shelf into the trolley. Am I the only one who thinks doing this without looking at the shelf or fumbling any of the cans, whilst the trolley is moving, was pretty clever? It’s hard to make sulking look cool, so managing to do so is badass.