When 15-year-old Cassandra (Alexa Mechling) awakens to find herself on display in a casket under the vigil of her elder sister Clara (Ava Psoras) in their home. As a weak Cassandra tries to communicate her desperate attempts to be seen and heard are perceived as terrifying supernatural occurrences by her sister, forcing her to consider … Continue reading Occurrence at Mills Creek (2019) Short Film Review
The original run of the “Horrible Histories” TV series was one of those lightning-in-a-bottle shows, a perfect match between writing and casts and while this big-screen spin-off unfortunately doesn’t have any of the series main cast, it does manage to get closer to the anarchic edutainment fun of its roots than any other project has … Continue reading Veni, vidi, risi: Horrible Histories: The Movie – Rotten Romans (2019) Review
Reassuringly hagiographic for baby boomer Beatles fans, Richard Curtis’ latest rom-com is a slight musical fantasy that succeeds thanks to the warmth and likeability of its leads. Jack Malik (Himesh Patel) is a struggling musician who’s just about ready to call time on his ambitions when he’s involved in an accident during a mysterious worldwide … Continue reading Yesterday (2019) will make all your troubles seem so far away for a couple of hours at most
There’s something giddily pure about Gurinder Chadha’s “Blinded by the Light,” a coming-of-age story about a young Pakistani Muslim boy growing up in late eighties Luton. With the country experiencing the economic and social turmoil of Thatcherism, Javed (Viveik Kalra) and his family must endure not only financial hardship but the hostility and bigotry of … Continue reading Javed learns to live with what he can’t rise above in Springsteen-powered musical dramedy Blinded By The Light (2019)
There’s probably a very good reason William Shakespeare didn’t turn to the flora and fauna of Africa when originally staging “Hamlet” and my money is on the inability of big cats to emote properly because that’s one of the biggest problems with this ‘live-action’ Lion King has. Oh, it's still a great story, competently told … Continue reading Disney’s reanimated version of The Lion King is Hakuna Meh-tata
In just a few short hours, Kevin Feige will take to the stage of Hall H at the San Diego Comic-Con and set out the studio's plans to follow-up from the unprecedented success of The Infinity Saga. We already have a pretty good idea that we're getting a third Guardians Of The Galaxy movie, a … Continue reading Marvel’s Phase Four And Beyond – What’s next for the MCU?
Back in the dark days of the end of the last millennium, things looked bleak for Whovian fandom. The TV movie was a still divisive but fading memory and the prospects of any new “Doctor Who” were but a distant dream. Into this dark space, Big Finish shone a bright light of hope. Founded in … Continue reading Doctor Who: The Sirens Of Time (BF001) Review
Although it opens like “America’s Next Top Model: The Movie”, Luc Besson’s latest action-fest plays out more like a poor carbon copy of last year’s “Red Sparrow”. It’s certainly more fun than “Red Sparrow”, but that’s not a particularly high bar to clear. Anna (Sasha Luss) is a KGB honey trap agent working in Paris … Continue reading Luc Besson’s lacklustre spy thriller Anna (2019) offers little more than a vanilla Villanelle knockoff
In following up on “Hereditary”, Ari Aster’s sophomore effort “Midsommer” was almost predestined to become the latest yardstick by which that most rarefied strata of cinephiles would embrace to prove their bona fides. A pity, then that he has delivered a glacial two-and-a-half-hour Instagram filter with ill-founded pretentions of psychological profundity. A group of friends … Continue reading Ari Aster’s Swedish folk horror Midsommar (2019) combines the existential terror of a trip to IKEA with the crushing tedium of a trip to IKEA
I’m not the biggest fan of zombie films, especially when they’re by-the-numbers brain-eating gore-fests, or tired re-treads of ‘humanity is the real monster’ trope (looking at you, “The Walking Dead”) so I’m pleased to say that Jim Jarmusch has avoided all of those tired clichés with his trademark mischievous wit. As the end of the … Continue reading The Dead Don’t Die (2019) brings us the most laid back end of the world ever.
There’re so many problematic aspects to “The Queen’s Corgi” it’s kind of baffling it ever made it to cinema screens. A cute cartoon fable about the Queen’s beloved pets may seem like a slam-dunk for the Saturday kid’s club crowd and, if you’re determined to see it, it’s definitely worth waiting for it to reach … Continue reading The Queen’s Corgi (2019) Review
After the copy and paste approach to an underwhelming second season of the Duffer Brothers 80s sci-fi homage, a new tactic was desperately required to freshen up Netflix’s major USP to prevent stagnation. The good news is that the show’s creators haven’t rested on their laurels and delved into their magical sack of science fiction … Continue reading ʍǝıʌǝᴚ 3 uosɐǝS sƃuıɥ⊥ ɹǝƃuɐɹʇS
Bad shark movies are a lot of fun, but behind all the hyped-up mega predator nonsense, the fact of the matter that when it comes down to it, it’s us humans who are the real monsters. In 2006, Canadian diver and cinematographer Rob Stewart set out to study sharks in the wild and understand their … Continue reading Sharkwater (2006) #SharkWeak3🦈 Review
It’s clear from the moment the opening credits start that something has gone very wrong with the “Jaws” franchise. Everything instantly looks cheaper as the new production team bring in a tackier, naffer aesthetic to the whole set-up. Director Joe Alves is certainly no Steven Spielberg and he’s not even a Jeannot Swarzc but then … Continue reading Jaws 3-D (1983) #SharkWeak3🦈 Review
Far from the high concept carcharodon carry-on of the likes of “6-Headed Shark Attack” or “Sharkenstein”, “Shark Lake” sets out to position itself as a gritty and grounded shark thriller. A gritty and ground shark thriller which begins with Clint Gray (Dolph Lundgren), a rare animal smuggler, going on the run with a bull shark … Continue reading Shark Lake (2015) #SharkWeak3🦈 Review
Skulking in the shadows of the mode headline-grabbing “Sharknado” series, another franchise has been chomping its way through people’s precious time and now finds itself on its fourth instalment and sixth head. “6-Headed Shark Attack” continues the series’ strong theme of having absolutely no connection to the previous movies save for one-upping the headcount and … Continue reading 6-Headed Shark Attack (2018) #SharkWeak3🦈 Review
When “Jaws” shattered box office records and blew minds in 1975, it inspired countless imitations but maybe none took as long to swim their way into cinema screens as India’s 1996 epic “Aatank”. Started in the early 1980s, it went through a couple of directors, various producers, rewrites, reshoots and even body doubles to finish … Continue reading Aatank (1996) #SharkWeak3🦈 Review
By now I’m used to sharksploitation movies being garbage, but “Trailer Park Shark” takes it to a whole new level of Great White trash. Oh, and to save you some time, if you’re thinking of watching this because it ‘stars’ “Sharknado” leading lady Tara Reid, be aware she’s hardly in it at all. When the … Continue reading Trailer Park Shark (2017) #SharkWeak3🦈 Review
Imbued with special powers by a toxic waste spill, mild-mannered ocean dweller Shark Kent dedicates himself to using his newfound abilities to fight for truth, justice and...nope. As fun as that movie would be, “Super Shark” is just another killer shark, bikinis and bites B-movie. It does, at least, open excitingly in media res with … Continue reading Super Shark (2011) #SharkWeak3🦈 Review
In the final days of World War II, a secret experiment to weaponise sharks is shut down by the Third Reich and thought destroyed but sixty years later, a small seaside town finds itself under siege by a mysterious bloodthirsty monster - one assembled from the reanimated parts of the world’s most ferocious species of … Continue reading Sharkenstein (2016) #SharkWeak3🦈 Review
The Queen’s Corgi is a story about a little Corgi called Rex who lives at Buckingham Palace. The movie isn’t very good but Rex is very cute. Rex gets into trouble and then gets sent to a Dog Pound! In the Pound, he meets other dogs and there is a mean dog called Tyson who … Continue reading The 6 Year Old Review – The Queen’s Corgi
There’s a prominent poster in the support group scene in “Avengers: Endgame” which poses the question: ‘Where Do We Go Now That They’re Gone?’ and in many ways, that’s the exact question Peter Parker is wrestling with in “Spider-Man: Far From Home”. As he struggles to come to terms with the loss of his mentor … Continue reading After the epic and emotional Endgame, Marvel lightens the mood with N̶a̶t̶i̶o̶n̶a̶l̶ ̶L̶a̶m̶p̶o̶o̶n̶’̶s̶ Spider-Man’s European Vacation. Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) Review
“Deep Blue Sea 2” is a movie that poses a lot of questions. Not just the obvious ones like what? or why? But also 'what if the raptors from “Jurassic World” but sharks'? And what led Warner Bros to value this IP so lowly they rented it out for this generic, cheap sharksploitation flick? But … Continue reading Deep Blue Sea 2 (2018) #SharkWeak3🦈 Review
I’ve always had an odd kind of relationship with stage musicals because, like a baby bird hatching from its egg, I tend to imprint on the first version I see or hear and then never really get on with other versions. This is especially true when I’ve seen the film first and then see a … Continue reading Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat at The London Palladium 2019 Review
Star names are no rarity when it comes to bad shark movies, but there are two distinct styles the genre adopts. Some, like say Kirsty Swanson in “Swamp Shark” are in the movie for the long haul whereas others, like Michael Madsen in this movie, were obviously filmed in a couple of hours one morning … Continue reading Megalodon (2018) #SharkWeak3🦈 Review
Having consulted Google Maps and confirmed that, yes, a shark in the Ozarks in technically possible, let’s dive head first into not horror fiction, but horror fact as a family vacation to the Ozarks takes a bloodthirsty turn when killer sharks invade the picturesque waterways. “Ozark Shark” doesn’t start well. The initial bloodless shark attacks … Continue reading Ozark Sharks (2016) #SharkWeak3🦈 Review
Many shark movies focus on making the sharks big. Very big. But what happens when you make the sharks really, really, really small? That's the plan behind a government-funded project to develop tiny sharks but when weaponization turns out to be problematic, the project turns to selling them to fill the aquariums of New York’s … Continue reading Piranha Sharks (2016) #SharkWeak3🦈 Review
Behind every terrible shark movie, there is a great shark movie being ruthlessly strip-mined. With “Frenzy” (or “Surrounded” – neither of which adequately describe this cinematic cloud of squaline egesta) that film is “The Shallows”. When a group of ‘extreme adventure travel’ vloggers are stranded by the most unconvincing CGI plane crash you’ll ever have … Continue reading Frenzy (2019) #SharkWeak3🦈 Review
There are great shark movies. And there are bad shark movies. And then there are great bad shark movies. Opening this year’s Shark Weak 3, we take a look at a forthcoming movie that definitely falls into that latter category. Reminiscent of Shark Weak 2’s winner of the coveted and totally not made up ‘Golden … Continue reading Bad CGI Sharks (2019) #SharkWeak3🦈 Review
This week, I was a guest on The Movie Bunker Podcast's Episode 42 - talking about how life, the universe and everything is better for having "Superman III" in it. The Movie Bunker Podcast is a podcast dedicated to reviewing the most critically panned movies. Is there a diamond in the rough? It's unlikely, but … Continue reading The Movie Bunker Podcast: Superman III
In 1961 Joseph Heller published a book that became the satirical bible for all armed forces regarding the futility of war and the rules applied to it. Over the years many studios have attempted and failed to adapt this previously ‘unfilmable’ novel. In 1970 a mediocre version was released but it took a further 49 … Continue reading AssHat discovers that if he requests a break from reviewing TV, that’s all the proof I need that he’s fit to keep going so here’s his take on George Clooney’s Catch-22
“Toy Story”, “Toy Story 2” and “Toy Story 3” remain one of the finest movie trilogies ever brought to life on the big screen. “Toy Story 4”, on the other hand, feels like one of those reunion specials that seem to be so in vogue right now, getting the whole band back together only to … Continue reading For fork’s sake – Toy Story 4 (2019) asks Game Of Thrones to hold its juicebox.
As the dad of a 12-year-old boy who will imminently turn 13, there was an element of “Brightburn” which struck a chord as Tori and Kyle Breyer (Elizabeth Banks and David Denman) watch their beloved little dude turn into a sullen, moody and downright malevolent young man almost overnight. Of course, the wrinkle here is … Continue reading Brightburn (2019) brings us Batman’s worst nightmare
For a franchise which has often been plagued with a sense of déjà vu (indeed its first sequel was an almost note for note remake of the first film and its second was themed around the redoing historic events), the most disappointing aspect of “Men In Black: International” is how familiar it all feels, despite … Continue reading Men In Black: International (2019) offers self-neuralyzing entertainment
If you thought Sony’s plan to create a viable cinematic franchise based around a popular recurring villain from another franchise with “Venom” was a bold new idea, then I’m here to exterminate your misconceptions with the news that Amicus tried it decades before. In the early sixties, Amicus’ founders American-born Milton Subotsky and Max Rosenberg … Continue reading Canon to the left of us, non-canon to the right, here we are stuck in the middle with…Who? Looking back at Peter Cushing’s Amicus Doctor Who for the 2nd Great Hammer-Amicus Blogathon
With the popularity of the zombie genre simply – heh – refusing to die, when What The Craggus Saw heard about “Day 66”, a new independent horror movie filming practically in our own backyard (or, more accurately, literally in the backyard of a friend of the family), we weren’t going to sleep through the end … Continue reading If you went down to the woods today, you’ll have been in for a big surprise as the dead have risen in Hampshire for “Day 66”. Surely it can’t be the apocalypse? Now?
Unjustly denigrated by fans, unfairly disowned by its creators, “Indiana Jones And The Temple Of Doom” has long had to fend off more than its fair share of criticism. Now, on its 35th Anniversary, it’s time this neglected middle child of the Indiana Jones saga got the praise it’s due. That rare sequel which doesn’t … Continue reading Indiana Jones And The Temple Of Doom (1984) deserves far more fortune and glory on its 35th Anniversary
Over the past couple of years, I’ve gotten more and more into American Late Night talk shows. Not the vainglorious onanism of James Corden but the biting satire of the more political shows like “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert” and “Late Night With Seth Meyers” (the host of which cameos as himself in the … Continue reading Late Night (2019) wants you to stay tuned for these important messages.
So influential and so ingrained in movie legend now, it’s hard to remember there was a time before “The Matrix” was a pop culture touchstone. Itself a synthesis of 20th century sci-fi and anime tropes it blended high-minded spirituality with gritty cyberpunk noir and – still – breathtakingly innovative special effects and fight choreography to … Continue reading Take the red pill and revisit The Matrix (1999) on its 20th Anniversary.
To the surprise of literally nobody, rising with an entirely unmerited sense of entitlement from the ashes of “X-Men: Apocalypse”, writer/ director Simon Kinberg has only managed to conjure a turkey from the flames. In the 1990s, the X-Men are enjoying a golden age of public and governmental approval. The President even has a brand … Continue reading X-Men: Dark Phoenix (2019) offers us the chance to dine on ashes while flipping us the bird.
1,214 posts 781,005 words And a lot of fun and stress along the way. There’s still plenty more to come from What The Craggus Saw as we head towards our Magnificent Seventh Anniversary next year, including: and so much more. So, whether you're reading us for the first time or for the thousandth time, … Continue reading The Joy Of Six: What The Craggus Saw’s 6th Anniversary
The most horrifying thing about this lukewarm all-filler, no-killer thriller is how much on-screen talent is wasted in telling its flaccid, predictable and profoundly stupid story. When Maggie (Diana Silvers) is moved back to her mum’s hometown, she’s quick to make new friends and starts hanging out with them outside the local liquor store, hoping … Continue reading Ma (2019) doesn’t need to spike your drink to put you to sleep.
Adorable, authentic and aspirationally acerbic, “Booksmart” is a comic triumph that skewers the high school graduate experience and forms the impudent middle chapter of a loose thematic coming-of-age trilogy which starts with “Eighth Grade” and segues into “Lady Bird”. On the eve of their high school graduation, Molly (Beanie Feldstein) and Amy (Kaitlyn Dever) – … Continue reading P-A-R-T-Y? Because you oughtta! Booksmart (2019) Review
Typical. You wait five years for a monster to show up and then four come at once. Following the events of “Godzilla”, secretive megacryptid management organisation Monarch has been working diligently to discover, catalogue and contain the various Titans which slumber across the globe but when eco-mercenary Alan Jonah (Charles Dance) gains control of the … Continue reading They mostly come out in murky light. Mostly. Godzilla: King Of The Monsters (2019) Review
Today, 31st May 2019, marks the 25th anniversary of the one and only screening of Roger Corman’s infamously unreleased “The Fantastic Four”. Tax write-off? Copyright obligation? Shits ‘n’ giggles? Whatever the reason, this million-dollar movie was apparently never meant to see the light of day, but then again if you want to find it, it’s … Continue reading It’s clobberin’ time for your eyes and ears: celebrating the 25th Anniversary of Roger Corman’s The Fantastic Four (1994)
If you were born between the 1970s and 1990s, it’s almost impossible to imagine a world without “The Muppets”. From “Sesame Street” to “The Muppet Show”, they formed one of the cornerstones of childhood pop culture and while they have endured, they’ve yet to recapture the dizzying heights of their late 1970s/ 1980s dominance. That’s … Continue reading It’s time to play the music, it’s time to light the lights, it’s time to raise the curtain on The Muppet Movie’s 40th Anniversary tonight!
Infamously, in 1993 Marvel signed a deal to produce a movie version of their popular comic characters “The Fantastic Four” and for reasons known only to a few – which this winningly frank documentary sets out to uncover – the decision was made to give the job to well known low-budget producer Roger Corman. While … Continue reading The story behind the story you never got to see…Doomed! The Untold Story Of Roger Corman’s The Fantastic Four (2015)
“Wonder Park” isn’t short of ambition but all it really ends up proving is that what Pixar do isn’t anywhere near as easy as it looks. When June’s mum falls ill, it seems to spell the end of their imagined theme park, a model of which has taken over their house but when June suddenly … Continue reading Wonder Park (2019) will have you wondering where you parked and whether anyone will notice if you nip back to the car.
Until, at least, “2012” came out, “The Day After Tomorrow” was the undisputed holder of the critical-existential-threat-to-all-life-on-Earth-trivialised-by-hysterical-pseudo-science movie championship (the trophy is enormous) and while it may have added fossil fuel to the fires of ignorance over the conceptual dissonance of global warming and climate change, it also managed to tap into not just environmental … Continue reading Fifteen years ago today, or two days from now, The Day After Tomorrow (2004) was released, which made scheduling this anniversary review somewhat tricky.
Picture the scene: Illumination writing room, circa 2017. Plans are well underway for the TV spinoff of “The Secret Life Of Pets” and the team have broken down around a dozen shorts to fill up the schedules when suddenly the word comes down that the studio have decided they want a theatrical sequel instead. Writer … Continue reading The Secret Life Of Pets 2 (2019) is three Saturday morning cartoons mashed into one.