1917 relentless, pointless, predictable 6/10


Some remarkable depictions of grisly war scenes. And a very human scale to measure the enormity of some of the parts of this bit of a bigger battle in a bigger war.

The ‘single shot’ style, or whatever, and the filming of one run of events in a larger theatre of play makes for a limited narrative. Like the early days of cinema, it shows effectively one perspective. Not that engaging for an audience brought up with quick cuts, multiple perspectives, and simultaneous yet separate events.

Predictable? Like a teen horror flick predictable. Makes M N Shyamalan look like a master of cunning and surprise.

Pointless? As a cinematic event, somewhat. As events in a war, apparently – the benedict cumberbatch character says as much.

It is relentless. Even when the remaining messenger has almost faded with fatigue and stress he keeps on going. Thankfully in a more human way than many glossy Hollywood thriller hero-types.

It’s a story. It’s not that well told. It’s long, oh so long. And it is both surprisingly and reassuringly anticlimactic.

I can’t really recommend it.

I rated a good day in the neighbourhood 8/10


I saw this as yet another Cineworld Unlimited preview.

It’s slow. It’s cautious. It’s really good.

How come the USA got Fred Rogers and the UK got Jimmy Saville and Rolf Harris?

The premise of an investigational journalist doing an interview with USA nice guy Mr Rogers is excellent. That it is based on a true story is even better.

This has to be one of the best films I’ve seen Tom Hanks in since Big. He is amazing as the calm and delightful Mr Rogers.

The misanthropic nature of the journalist fits the zeitgeist and works very well.

This is a delightful, slow, film that is well worth seeing.

I rated Jo Jo Rabbit 8/10 on IMDB


Hilarious and harrowing. This is a brilliant movie with some excellent acting and writing.

The NAZI terror is almost tangible in the early part of the movie. And apparent part way through.

The emergent friendship between NAZI-enthusiast youth and the Jewish girl hidden in his eaves is telling: understand that we have more in common than we have in difference and we do more together than apart.

The characters illustrate the many beliefs that fuel war and are notable by the excellent acting and portrayal.

The imaginary Hitler friend is a surprisingly effective metaphor for maturity. As Hitler’s divisive nonsense fades in influence we see Jo Jo grow as a boy to a man. I’d worried that this movie might show Hitler as some sort of strong man. Thankfully it paints him as the ludicrous character he really was and modern-day ideologues appear to be.

This is a remarkable film that is well worth seeing.

I rated Le Mans ‘66 7/10 on IMDB


Solid movie about a successful American and an understated Brit trying to give Ford Motors the innovation they asked for.

As an example of how firms beg for innovation and then resist it at nearly all costs this should be cut down to about 30 minutes and used to replace numerous ‘innovation’ and other training courses. Far more fun and possibly far more effective.

As a story, it is well told and engaging. Even better, it ends as it should.

Some terrifying racing scenes and vicious competition make for some very tense viewing.

I saw it in ScreenX. The extended scenes created immersion in the racing.

Well worth seeing.

I rated Charlie’s Angels (2019) 5/10 on IMDB


5 is perhaps too generous. But 4 seemed too mean.

I saw this at a Cineworld Unlimited preview.

Sadly, this film is a bit of a sprawling mess. It has lots of good film ingredients: a good cast; locations, locations, locations; easily identifiable villains and heroes; a light sprinkling of subterfuge; humour; and some glamour. Those things are spread all over the place though. And the characters are a bit…superficial. A shame, as the characters and their interaction made the TV series and the earlier movies.

There are some good touches of the TV series in the visit to the ‘stone quarry’. Unsure why ‘quarry’ is qualified, but it’s likely another idiom I’m missing. Great fun and pretty dirty fighting offset by some barely credible tension.

I won’t mention Patrick Stewart. No idea where his character was meant to be from.

Things are a bit grislier than the old TV show: impaling, some pretty rough fights, and some death.

It felt very long. Too long.

Go see frozen 2 instead. More credible story and stronger, more well-formed characters.