Saturday, 6 May 2017

My 12 Best Reviews


This is an idea shamelessly cribbed from Rick Burin. Like him, I write reviews for every film I watch on my Letterboxd profile. If you're fortunate, these witterings may garner 'up-votes' from other members of the Letterboxd community. Some LB'ers get their reviews up-voted into the stratosphere, with hundreds of like. Don't expect that from my reviews; I'm lucky to reach the 20 mark as you'll see. Based on the number of votes, these therefore are the 12 best reviews I have written. Allegedly - because there are some I'm proud of, and there are some I'm not. But you can't argue with the public now can you? Two things have struck me from compiling this, one is that it's clear that the reviews I write of new releases (ie films released in the last few years) in the main garner more up votes than the obscurities and/or classics that I generally watch, whilst the other is that it is the films I rate highly that tend to get the votes over the ones I give an utter drubbing too.

12. Amy (Dir Asif Kapadia, 2015)



Reviewed January 2016

"It points the finger where the blame truly lies. Yes it acknowledges the horrendous, cavalier damage the likes of the media and Blake did to her, but it finally lays the blame at the door of her manager Raye Cosbert and her father Mitch who got away with this for far too long"

Rating: 5/5
Votes: 25

Full Review: LB

11. T2 Trainspotting (Dir Danny Boyle, 2017)



Reviewed February 2017

"More than any other sequel I can currently recall, T2 has matured with its audience and reflects where they are likely to be at right now. Whereas Trainspotting will perhaps always appeal to teens/twentysomethings of any generation, I think you have to have a bit of experience under your belt, you have to be 35 and upwards to appreciate this"

Rating: 4/5
Votes: 25

Full Review: LB and Blog

10. The Lady In The Van (Dir Nicholas Hytner, 2015)



Reviewed November 2015

"I took my mother to see The Lady In The Van. On leaving the cinema, her first remark was, "I didn't know Alan Bennett was gay?" It's a naive enough remark, but she then went one better by adding "I thought the men coming round the house were doing jobs for him?" It's the kind of maternal comment that Bennett has made a career from. But if that means my mum has now become an 'Alan Bennett Mother', what does that make me?"

Rating: 4/5
Votes: 26

Full Review: LB and Blog

9. Spectre (Dir Sam Mendes, 2015)



Reviewed November 2015

"Whisper it, but Spectre is a bit of a Greatest Hits of Bond, harking back to several moments across the franchise's history"

Rating: 4/5
Votes: 28

Full Review: Here and Blog

8. Elephant (Dir Alan Clarke, 1989)



Reviewed March 2014

"A brutal uncompromising look at Sectarian assassination that dramatises genuine events and forces you to consider The Troubles in a way that acres of news coverage cannot. Just what is your gut reaction at the end of it? Does the endless cadence of footfall and gunfire go some way to desensitise you or does it make you realise this has to stop"

Rating: 4/5
Votes: 28

Full Review: LB and Blog

7. King of New York (Dir Abel Ferrara,1990)



Reviewed March 2014

"It's only in the intervening years that the once vilified movie has achieved the status and esteem it deserves and at last Christopher Walken's effortlessly cool, deeply and intensely enigmatic and insouciant performance receives both the merit and the iconic status it has long deserved"

Rating: 4/5
Votes: 32

Full Review: LB and Blog

6. Kes (Dir Ken Loach, 1969)



Reviewed January 2014

"Now forty five years old the themes, message and approach Kes has has barely dated. It remains a grubbily realistic poetic evocation of northern working class life and tells us to grab our respite and dreams where we can and how we can. I imagine it still has just as much to say to a young boy or girl as it did when I saw it at that age and when the generation of children in the early 70s saw it too"

Rating: 5/5
Votes: 33

Full Review: LB , Blog and The Geek Show

5. Supersonic (Dir Mat Whitecross, 2016)



Reviewed October 2016

"Supersonic might just be the funniest, most feelgood music documentary in recent years. And I mean, laugh out loud on several occasions funny"

Rating: 5/5
Votes: 35

Full Review: LB and Blog

4. They Shoot Horses, Don't They? (Dir Sydney Pollack, 1969)




Reviewed March 2013

"It's natural to be aghast by the events depicted in the film, and wonder how we allowed them to happen in a supposedly civilised society and time not too long ago in our collective conscious. But ask yourself this; is it really any different to the reality shows we witness on TV now, in a similar time of economic slump and depression? All those endless series of Big Brother and The Biggest Loser, The Bachelor and Britain's Got Talent, and anything that can be traced back to the biggest MC of them all, Simon Cowell?"

Rating: 5/5
Votes: 35

Full Review: LB and Blog

3. I, Daniel Blake (Dir Ken Loach, 2016)



Reviewed February 2017

"The point I'm trying to make, the point I think Ken Loach's film is trying to make, is that We Are All Daniel Blake. We are all just a wage packet, a bout of ill health or a stroke of misfortune away from what Dave Johns' everyman finds himself struggling with here"

Rating: 4.5/5
Votes: 46

Full Review: LB and Blog

2. High-Rise (Dir Ben Wheatley, 2015)



Reviewed March 2016

"Ending the film with Thatcher's speech on capitalism whilst the precocious young Gove look-a-like Toby, Charlotte's son and - it is said - the architect's 'bastard' - seems to take note is a superb touch too. Toby claims he can see the future through his toy kaleidoscope (a wonderful retro touch for any of us who grew up in the 70s and 80s) and, given the way Cameron's cabinet seems determined to be an 80s tribute government, I think he really can"

Rating: 5/5
Votes: 51

Full Review: LB and Blog

1. Berberian Sound Studio (Dir Peter Strickland, 2012)




Reviewed Jan 2013

"Firstly if you're a nerd for the aesthetics of film, you'll love it. The 70s setting, the Giallo references are all perfect that you don't think of it as a present day film set in the 70s, this could be a lost forgotten 70s film. Secondly, if you're a nerd for the mechanics of film, the technology, you'll REALLY love it"

Rating: 4.5/5
Votes: 115

Full review: LB and Blog

1 comment:

  1. Fantastic, loved this. Thanks for the namecheck too! ;-)

    ReplyDelete