utterly stunned at this news !! actor Nelsan Ellis has died aged 39 – what a tragic crime for one so talented to be taken so young – Ellis was the life and soul of the hit vampire show True Blood where he played the cook Lafayette, such was his impact on the show and the audience that watched his role was extended as in the books he was killed off pretty early on – Ellis also played Martin Luther King, Jr. in Lee Daniels The Butler, Henry the Waiter in The Help and was last seen in Elementary alongside Jonny Lee Miller where he played Shinwell Johnson a gang member turned informant – it’s so sad that the world of entertainment has lost such a bright star oh so young….
American Made sees Tom Cruise reunite with his Edge of Tomorrow director Doug Liman (The Bourne Identity, Mr. and Mrs. Smith) in what looks like an under the radar gem – the film also stars Domhnall Gleeson & Sarah Wright and is based on the true story of Barry Seal, a U.S. pilot who is recruited by the CIA to run one of the biggest covert operations in U.S. history – after watching this trailer I’m sure you guys will agree American Made not only looks like a damn fine action movie with a fabulous story attached but for me as a fan it will also be refreshing to see Cruise get his teeth into something that will showcase his undoubted acting ability…. Roll on September !!
Ridley Scott returns to the universe he created with Alien Covenant a new chapter in the Alien franchise. The crew of the colony ship Covenant sits down on what they think is an uncharted paradise, but slowly it becomes apparant that this world is actually a dangerous, unforgiving place of terror where it’s only inhabitant are creatures that bleed acid and want to tear you limb from limb….
The films impressive cast includes : Michael Fassbender, Katherine Waterston, Danny McBride, James Franco, Demián Bichir, Billy Crudup, Carmen Ejogo, Amy Seimetz, Jussie Smollett and Callie Hernandez – Alien Covenant opens on May 19th
the loss of any movie star is a sad time but losing Bill Paxton an actor I have adored since the 80s, iconic, beautiful, crazy and delightfully funny is something I’m really struggling with – as I write this tears are welling, my heart is sinking and the memories of all my favorite Paxton movies are swimming round my head in what can only be described as delirious grief – I have lost count of the times since 1986 I have uttered that line from Aliens “Game Over Man!” and watched over and over his psychotic performance as vampire Severen in the fantastic horror movie Near Dark – to say he is one of my favorite movie idol’s is an understatement, his films have ignited my passion of the screen and for me he will be remembered as this infectious, ballsy movie star that owned the screen with his cowboy swagger, his mischievous grin and one of the most recognizable vocals in film – he was loved and will be missed by all – RIP #FilmLegend
“I’m gonna separate your head from your shoulders. Hope you don’t mind none”
Bill Paxton – Near Dark
John Wick is forced into returning to the criminal underworld after a former associate requires him to to repay a marker debt – whilst back in familiar territory he discovers that a large bounty has been put on his life and all shit is about to rain down on him and those in his path
Keanu Reeves reunites with director and former stunt man Chad Stahelski for their sequel to 2014’s explosive action thriller JOHN WICK – the exciting cast also includes Common, Riccardo Scamarcio, Ruby Rose, John Leguizamo and Laurence Fishburne….
The only way I can describe how I felt whilst watching John Wick: Chapter Two was like I was playing a shoot-em-up on my game console – the action is high intensity, brutal & relentless and contains countless scenes of close quarter kills, hand to hand combat, explosions and falling and fighting down stairs that make Sylvester Stallone’s Expendables look like a bunch of pussies – Common’s bodyguard Cassian adds spice to this sequel, his fight scenes with Wick are EPIC both characters not giving a quarter and that tube train moment is one to savour, Scamarcio’s crime lord D’Antonio is a well connected Italian mobster who will eliminate anyone who gets in his way and Laurence Fishburne plays the Bowery King reuniting him with his Matrix co-star Reeves for some intriguing albeit brief screen time – unlike many films before it this action packed sequel may be even better than it’s original, Stahelski gives the movie a more realistic feel than many others in it’s genre, yes it’s violent and yes it contains a hefty body count but it’s also a film that’s dripping with black humor, colorful interesting characters, blazing original soundtrack all set to a backdrop that not only looks fantastic but is well used in the context of each scene – from the Catacombs to the Enter the Dragon influenced Mirror Scene John Wick: Chapter Two is full of memorable blood soaked moments, it’s an enthralling, pulse racing action flick so if you enjoyed 2014’s original or you just love getting your ass nailed to a seat not wanting to leave in-case you miss something then you will eat this shit up and be hungry for desert afterwards – Keanu Reeves looks so f@ckin cool in action Full Stop!, his tall stature, angry facial hair and Kung-fu moves are totally bad-ass so if your looking to get high on that drug we call Badass Movie Watching then this sequel will blow your freaking mind….★★★★½
Having seen some great movies towards the end of 2016 and the early part of 2017 I was expecting something so much more from Barry Jenkins much acclaimed MOONLIGHT a film that spans the early life of Chiron an African American living and growing up in Miami….
I must first say I did actually enjoy MOONLIGHT some of the movies visuals and photography was a delight, especially the school fight scene, the beach and restaurant shots were impressive, I even thought some of the performances are worth a mention specifically the three actors who played the same character growing up through the years, Alex Hibbert, Ashton Sanders and Trevante Rhodes all three were top notch as was the delightful Janelle Monae and Naomi Harris but in fairness as a movie MOONLIGHT did nothing too excite, it’s certainly a good movie but not a great one is “it’s play it safe narrative” is nothing we haven’t seen before, the topic of sexuality was not conclusive, I felt here was a kid growing up damaged by his drug and drink addicted mum who just wanted to be loved by whom ever (whether that be Juan played by Mahershala Ali a local drug dealer or Kevin played by André Holland) so yes it was a little bit about self discovery, and maybe confusion but that was all I felt it was – I felt the way Jenkins handled the transition of Chiron growing up was not great, too many questions were left unanswered which was a shame – what did happen to Juan? and how did his mum suddenly appear in a drug treatment facility these were small things but big in the context of the story….
Sadly there is no sugar coating here, although I enjoyed MOONLIGHT the movie has been used by the Academy and others as a political tool for Award Season, the lack of black representation at last years OSCARS was highlighted so this year MOONLIGHT and other movies of similar ilk have been way OVER praised and given more credit than necessary – Barry Jenkins MOONLIGHT is a decent picture but nothing more…. ★★★½
ok…. so if you’ve not heard of Theodore Melfi the writer, director behind HIDDEN FIGURES that’s possibly because he’s not done a great deal (in the directing department that is) – apart from some early shorts, a couple of producing credits & in 2014 directing a certain Bill Murray in the wonderful St Vincent Melfi is pretty much an unknown quantity – Hidden Figures is his second feature behind the camera and stars Taraji P Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monae, Kevin Costner & Glen Powell….
To my absolute shame I did not know anything about the brilliant minds of these courageous, smart NASA ladies Katherine G Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson so firstly a big thank you Theodore Melfi for enlightening me – secondly Taraji, Octavia, Janelle take a bow, you are all goddesses in this movie, your performances not only honors these heroic women but you also stole a tear and made this guys heart melt in telling their story and finally a thank you to Pharrell Williams for that majestic little song “Running” that is not only a superb tune but also fits the scene in the movie perfectly….
WHAT AN INSPIRING MOVIE !! without sounding condescending HIDDEN FIGURES is a true story on how three African-American ladies competed with the prejudice of the times to achieve almost the impossible, not only helping to get astronaut John Glen into Space but also in achieving their own personal goals at NASA in the early 60s – this is one hell of a movie that deserves to be watched by the masses…. ★★★★½