AMERICAN MADE (2017) : Doug Liman
Tom Cruise, Sarah Wright, Domhnall Gleeson, Jesse Plemons
on the Movie Screen TOM CRUISE has few equals, the man is a bonefied action star, a charasmastic movie magnet, a film icon and in my eyes one of the Greatest Movie Stars that’s ever lived – ok so now I have that off my chest what did I make of his second movie with filmaker Doug Liman AMERICAN MADE is a film based around a true story of pilot come drug runner Barry Seal – films that fly under the radar & deliver the goods are few and far between yet American Made succeeds big time – from the time I sat in my seat in the jam packed screening to it’s final credits time flew – there’s a darkness, a terrifying story being told yet you can’t help but smile, laugh and at time clap your way through proceedings, the pace is electric, the locations pleasing on the eye and attention to detail superb – it seems Liman and Cruise are a match made in movie heaven and with this being there second picture together only whets the lips for a third ★★★★
BLADE RUNNER 2049 : Denis Villeneuve
Ryan Gosling, Harrison Ford, Ana de Armas, Sylvia Hoeks, Robin Wright, Mackenzie Davis
In 1982 Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner was one of my first Science Fiction crushes, it’s still in My Top 20 movies of all time so when I heard a sequel was coming, I was sceptical but then something changed….. it was announced that Canadian filmmaker Denis VILLENEUVE was set to direct, the talent behind some of my favorite movies in recent years Prisoners, Enemy, Sicario and Arrival and I instantly knew that this film when it arrived would be worthy of the name Blade Runner – and as I’m sat here typing my thoughts, still giddy with the excitment felt viewing the movie for the second time with a little Hans Zimmer playing in the background I’m actually struggling to find the words on how bloody great Blade Runner 2049 actually is – it’s a picture that’s more than a homage laid sci-fi sequel, this is filmmaking on a grand scale, Deakins use of color and light is quite overwhelming, a small but fine example of this is them early scenes between K and Morton, the way the scene is lit, it’s mood that’s transformed to the screen adds greatly to this tense, titanic and very relevant encounter – along with the movies obvious masterclass in sound & imagery Blade Runner 2049 is a film that carries a wicked cast, with 4 amazing ladies hugging the limelight and making this sequel extra special – Ana de Armas is eye catching as hologram Joi, so much so you start to believe she’s actually real – Mackenzie Davis is simply WOW as street girl Mariette with her homage strewn outfit and amazing hairstyle – and then there’s Lt. Joshi a tough ass cop played by the remakable Robin Wright who’s perfectly cast and last but not least Dutch actress Sylvia Hoeks who is MESMERISING as Niander Wallace’s creation Luv, she’s quite the badass and those scenes with K near the end of the movie are so unbelievable I left half my finger nails in the arm of the chair – Overall Blade Runner 2049 is not only the best movie sequel since Cameron’s Aliens it’s also a thought provoking slice of original storytelling that sucks you in, captivates and excites like no other movie has this year ★★★★½
it’s Harry’s 75th birthday so I thought it appropriate to post my Top 10 Movies of one of the screen’s great movie stars – whether he’s flying his Millenium Falcon or cracking his whip Harrison Ford epitomises movie greatness – born in Chicago in 1942 Ford started his movie career in 1973’s American Graffiti and has since become one of the screen’s most loved film stars with leading roles in both the Star Wars and Indiana Jones franchise…..
so without further ado here’s my Top 10 Movies of Harrison Ford starting with in my opinion the greatest action movie of all time: 1. Raiders of the Lost Ark – 2. Empire Strikes Back – 3. Blade Runner – 4. A New Hope – 5. The Temple of Doom – 6. The Fugitive – 7. The Last Crusade – 8. Witness – 9. Working Girl – 10. Return of the Jedi – it’s incredible to think Harry’s still making action movies and this year the big screen will see the return of Rick Deckard in the sequel to Ridley Scott’s masterful scifi Blade Runner and then in 2020 we will see Ford reunite with Spielberg for yet another Indiana Jones movie (licking my lips) and I’m pretty sure he’s not finished there…..
as a teenager growing up in the 80s I was in awe of this bad-ass Princess that lived through the medium of the movies, she was my first movie crush, a total and utter rebel who gave me hope that the evil scum of the empire would be toppled and the rebellion would win out the day – she was of course Princess Leia aka: Carrie Frances Fisher – born to the wonderful screen star Debbie Reynolds and singer Eddie Fisher Carrie was like Hollywood royalty and with the help of George Lucas, Harrison Ford and Mark Hamill she would soon become a movie idol cherished and loved by legions of movie fans that were not only struck by her immense beauty but also with her humor & intelligence – Carrie not only appeared in the original Star Wars trilogy and 2015’s The Force Awakens but she also wrote novels that included her 1987 autobiographical Postcards from the Edge that would later become a movie starring Meryl Streep and just before her death Carrie was promoting her latest autobiography The Princess Diarist – but to me Carrie will always be that fearless Princess that ignited the Star Wars trilogy and thankfully due to film we all can at any time take a trip to a galaxy far, far away and keep her memory alive, onscreen of course that is…….
Top Right: 1989’s Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade with Steven Spielberg, Harrison Ford and Sean Connery – Top Left: 1982’s E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial with Steven Spielberg & Henry Thomas – Bottom Right: 1976’s Taxi Driver with Martin Scorsese, Harvey Keitel and Robert De Niro – Bottom Left: filming 1939’s Gone with the Wind
here’s a great shot of Roy Batty (Rutger Hauer) on Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner set
One thing that really pisses me off is all those no good for nothing George Lucas haters out there and believe me I come across many on my social media feeds – how dare they complain about who shot who first, the digital effects on the prequels or their absolute dislike for characters such as Jar Jar Binks, the truth is clear if it wasn’t for Lucas the creator of one of movies finest franchises (yes prequels included) the cinematic world would be a much poorer place and we would not be getting extremely excited for J. J. Abrams’s latest Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens – here’s the latest trailer, a few new stills and a gorgeous new poster – enjoy but remember those goosebumps and that nostalgic feeling you may have whilst watching this trailer is all down to one man, he started this ride back in 77′ and his name is George Lucas !!
The Force Awakens is set approximately 30 years after the events of Return of the Jedi
The film opens December 18th and stars Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Harrison Ford, Peter Mayhew, John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Oscar Isaac, Adam Driver, Lupita Nyong’o, Gwendolyn Christie, Domhnall Gleeson, Andy Serkis and Max Von Sydow