Archive | November, 2012

Need a feel good film to get you in the mood for Christmas? No, ‘Fred Claus’ most absolutely WILL NOT do!

26 Nov

Here’s a tip off for you all. This is presuming you’re part of a romantic couple (or even a not-so-romantic couple; it’s fine, it’ll probably do you more favours anyway). There’s a film I saw a while ago, which I’d like to recommend. I keep seeing it for sale on DVD, and I’m taking this as a sign from the universe that I probably should watch it again. Either that or on second viewing it’ll reveal itself to be a smug, pretentious insult to my sensitivities. Or a cloying overly sentimental gush fest that will have me struggling to keep back my cynical Disney fearing vomit. Actually, as it’s a collection of stories it could be both. But, let me put my cynicism to one side and introduce what I think could well be a good film to see again (or maybe the first time in your case). Perhaps a film more suited to Valentine’s Day, granted, but you know, in my current state of singledom I do occasionally need reminding that there were a few years past involving a woman, and watching this again might put me in the frame of mind to entertain another! All positive stuff I hear you cry, and what film could have brought forth this optimism so close to Christmas? Continue reading

“How long have we got?” The James Bond blogs: ‘Quantum of Solace’ (2008)

11 Nov

Quantum of Solace is a James Bond film that wants us to forget it’s a James Bond film. Whereas Casino Royale raised our expectations of what a modern Bond film could be, Quantum of Solace seems almost embarrassed to be in the company of the franchise’s other entries; as if it’s determined not to be in any way formulaic or even representative of the series. On one hand this sounds a refreshing proposition; why should a new Bond film be a slave to past expectations and practice? What Quantum of Solace actually does is throw us uncompromisingly and suddenly into the action from the very first scene, and takes bold risks within its economical running time (Quantum harks back to the punchier duration of Dr. No or Goldfinger). These ‘risks’ with the overall presentation, render the film unlike most entries in the series. Difference is often a very good thing, and is welcome, as we’ve seen before with On Her Majesty’s Secret Service and Casino Royale, to name but two. But alienating your audience in the pursuit of being different, and sometimes sacrificing a clear narrative, is not welcome at all. Continue reading