The World According To Garp (1982) Review

This review is being posted as part of the Robin Williams Blogathon 2018 being hosted by Realweegiemidget Reviews and In Good Old Days of Classic Hollywood. One of the most remarkable things about “The World According To Garp” is just how well director George Roy Hill ("Butch Cassidy And The Sundance Kid", "The Sting") and … Continue reading The World According To Garp (1982) Review

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine 25th Anniversary Retrospective: Season 1

25 years ago, on 3rd January 1993, “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine” made its TV debut in America. It wouldn’t reach UK TV screens until 22nd August later that year. Often thought of as the neglected middle child of the “Star Trek” offspring, looking at it now, it was simply two decades ahead of its … Continue reading Star Trek: Deep Space Nine 25th Anniversary Retrospective: Season 1

Spaceballs (1987) 30th Anniversary Review

In all the fever pitch excitement of the countdown to “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” and its subsequent reception, the 30th anniversary of another space saga which took place once upon a timewarp in a galaxy very, very, very, very far away kind of slipped by. Released 30 years ago in the UK on the … Continue reading Spaceballs (1987) 30th Anniversary Review

The Naked Gun: From The Files Of Police Squad! (1988) Now And Then (Then And Now) Blogathon Review

Concluding my contribution to Realweegiemidget Reviews & Thoughts All Sorts ‘Now & Then’ Blogathon, we leap forward 32 years from the 23rd century sci-fi kitsch of “Forbidden Planet” to the mean streets of 1980s Los Angeles in hard-boiled detective spoof “The Naked Gun: From The Files Of Police Squad!”. Los Angeles Police Detective Frank Drebin … Continue reading The Naked Gun: From The Files Of Police Squad! (1988) Now And Then (Then And Now) Blogathon Review

Forbidden Planet (1956) Then And Now (Now And Then) Blogathon Review

Immortalised in the opening song of “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” – and deservedly so – “Forbidden Planet” is a Sci-Fi milestone which propelled the genre from B-movie cult appeal to A-list mainstream success. As part of Realweegiemidget Reviews & Thoughts All Sorts ‘Now & Then’ Blogathon, I’m taking a look at a time before … Continue reading Forbidden Planet (1956) Then And Now (Now And Then) Blogathon Review

The Witches (1990) #MonthOfSpooks Review

Much as Ian Fleming did with “Dr. No”, Roald Dhal dismissed the film version of his novel “The Witches” as ‘utterly appalling’ and much like Fleming was, he’s was being far too harsh. When Luke’s parents are killed in a car accident, his Norwegian grandmother Helga (Mai Zetterling) accompanies him back to England, regaling him … Continue reading The Witches (1990) #MonthOfSpooks Review

Monster House (2006) #MonthOfSpooks Review

A family-friendly horror movie seems like an oxymoron, but it’s exactly what 2006’s “Monster House” is. It has all the hallmarks and ingredients you’d expect from a really good haunted house movie, it's structured exactly the way a 'real' horror movie would be, except you can watch it with your kids. When DJ, his best … Continue reading Monster House (2006) #MonthOfSpooks Review

My Little Pony: The Movie (1986) Review

It may seem hard to believe, but there was a time, not so long ago, when toy companies would licence out their IPs to animation studios to crank out a quick cash-in feature film, caring less for the quality of the end result than they do now. In 1986, having seen the success enjoyed by … Continue reading My Little Pony: The Movie (1986) Review

To The Devil A Daughter (1976) #MonthOfSpooks Review

I’ve often used @TheMarckoGuy’s #Month Of Spooks as a chance to catch up on classic horror movie’s I’ve never seen before but this year, I decided to revisit a film which freaked me all the way out when I first saw it at probably far too young an age. John Verney (Richard Widmark) is an … Continue reading To The Devil A Daughter (1976) #MonthOfSpooks Review

Blade Runner (1982) #Review

Back in the early eighties, giddy on “Star Wars”, I’d picked up my visual scanning for any other movies which starred my favourite heroes. “Hanover Street” cruelly tricked me – I mean, it had “Han” in the title and starred Harrison Ford so it must be great right? Not for this 8-year-old “Star Wars” fan. … Continue reading Blade Runner (1982) #Review

Flatliners (1990) Review

Nineties with a capital 9, stripped of the rose-coloured shroud of nostalgia, Joel Schumacher’s morbid thriller emphasises the ‘flat’ in “Flatliners”. Inspired by the near-death experiences of patients, a  group of brilliant, ambitious medical students decide to probe beyond the veil to establish empirically what happens when you die. But as each of them becomes … Continue reading Flatliners (1990) Review

Strange Days (1995) Review

Long before she became the queen of clinically detached but nerve-shreddingly tense true life docudrama, Kathryn Bigelow directed this vastly underrated, far-sighted techno-thriller. Now finally released on BluRay, it’s time, from the bizarre present day of 2017, to reappraise the Strange Days of 1995. Lenny Nero, a former cop turned street hustler makes a living … Continue reading Strange Days (1995) Review

Guilty Pleasures: My Stepmother Is An Alien (1988) Revisited

Court is back in session and first in the dock is jolly 1988 sci-fi romantic comedy “My Stepmother Is An Alien”. When a Klystron tube experiment conducted by Dr Steven Mills (Dan Aykroyd) runs out of control and sends a radar beam to a distant galaxy, the inhabitants send Celeste (Kim Basinger) on a secret … Continue reading Guilty Pleasures: My Stepmother Is An Alien (1988) Revisited

The Lost Boys (1987) Review

For a film that prides itself on a promise that you’ll ‘never grow old’, “The Lost Boys” has betrayed us all and turns 30 this year, released on this date all the way back in 1987. I watched it recently for the first time in maybe ten years and it still holds up pretty well … Continue reading The Lost Boys (1987) Review

Harry Potter And The Philosopher’s Stone (2001) Review

Hello cupcakes, remember me?  I know, I know!!  It’s been a while… Anyway, now that I’m back I want to talk to you about “Harry Potter”. Twenty years ago today, Bloomsbury published “Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone”, so I thought it would be fun to go back and rewatch that first Potter film once … Continue reading Harry Potter And The Philosopher’s Stone (2001) Review

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie (1995) Review

At the height of their TV popularity, it was a no-brainer to bring the brightly coloured chop socky antics of the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers to the big screen. Tiring of Rita Repulsa’s continued failures to eliminate the Rangers, Lord Zed revives Ivan Ooze from his six millennia imprisonment. Ooze quickly destroys Zordon’s base, robbing … Continue reading Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie (1995) Review

Trainspotting (1996) Review

Shot on an indie budget, “Trainspotting” was a brash, foul-mouthed, grotty little movie with blockbuster sized ambition. Wilfully anarchic and wildly spirited, it proved to be a real shot in the arm for a British film industry pigeonholed by Merchant Ivory dramas and sickly sweet rom-coms. The story of four junkies: Renton (Ewan McGregor), Sickboy … Continue reading Trainspotting (1996) Review

Underworld: Evolution (2006) Review

Ol' blue filter's back! That’s right, we’re back running with the night as we pick up with Selene (Kate Beckinsale), Michael (Scott Speedman) and all our other toothsome chums as we plunge back into the ongoing war between the Vampires and the Lycans. Picking up directly where “Underworld” left off, Death Dealer Selene and vampire/ … Continue reading Underworld: Evolution (2006) Review

Underworld (2003) Review

It’s ironically appropriate that a film so concerned with the purity of various bloodlines is itself a shameless hybrid of “Blade” and “The Matrix”. There’s an undeniable appeal to the idea of a war between the eldritch creatures of the night but the film is so taken with the cleverness of its idea that it … Continue reading Underworld (2003) Review

The American President (1995) Review

Before the dignity and prestige of the office was befouled and irreversibly tarnished by a bloviating titian demagogue, there was a time when America had fallen madly back in love with their Commander In Chief and Hollywood was falling over itself to ingratiate itself with the occupant of The White House. 1990s films such as … Continue reading The American President (1995) Review

Dave (1993) Review

A sly and sparky twist on the age old tale of ‘The Prince And The Pauper’, “Dave” delivers a delightfully upbeat moral fable as a corrupt and callous leader is replaced by ‘an ordinary joe’. When President Bill Mitchell (Kevin Kline) arranges for a duplicate to make a public appearance to cover up for an … Continue reading Dave (1993) Review

To Paraphrase The Romulans…

Matters more urgent caused my absence. Now, witness the result: blog posts abandoned, expansion of Pokémon GO meme posts everywhere. Yes, I have indeed been negligent, dear reader, but no more. I...am back. A couple of months ago, I got a new job (in the video game industry woot woot) with a longer commute than … Continue reading To Paraphrase The Romulans…

Ghostbusters II (1989) #Rediscovered

“Ghostbusters II” is the sequel nobody wanted to make, and boy does it show. It betrays the ending of the first film in a worse way than “The Matrix Reloaded” does. If you’re currently girding your loins to decry and condemn the unnecessary remaking of the original 1984 classic “Ghostbusters”, you might want to start … Continue reading Ghostbusters II (1989) #Rediscovered

Ghostbusters (1984) #Rediscovered

Nearly every Friday night, Mertmas and I settle down for ‘Movie Night’, one of the highlights of the week. Usually we’ll watch something I loved when I was his age or work our way through a recent franchise to get him up to speed for an upcoming new release. Recently, we managed to do both … Continue reading Ghostbusters (1984) #Rediscovered

They Live! (1988) Review

One question springs immediately to mind when watching John Carpenter’s 1988 sci-fi action B-movie “They Live!”: why aren’t they remaking this right now!? Don’t get me wrong, Carpenter’s original is a great movie in its own right, but the themes of the story - its very core conceit - is so on point now, nearly … Continue reading They Live! (1988) Review

The Black Cauldron (1985) #Rediscovered

Infamous as the movie which almost killed off Disney’s animation studio (the “The Little Mermaid”-led renaissance was still four years off), “The Black Cauldron” staggered into cinemas in 1985, mortally wounded by a butchering edit at the hands of Jeffrey Katzenberg and a critical mismatch between the source material and the studio behind it. Loosely … Continue reading The Black Cauldron (1985) #Rediscovered

Return Of The Jedi (1983) #Rediscovered

So here we are, Mertmas and I – at the final chapter of the original Star Wars trilogy having taken only two weeks to do so, a feat perhaps more impressive than doing the Kessel Run in a mere twelve parsecs. It’s time to watch the film that we all thought was ‘it’. The end. The … Continue reading Return Of The Jedi (1983) #Rediscovered

The Empire Strikes Back (1980) #Rediscovered

A week after sitting down with Mertmas to watch “Star Wars”, we’re settling in to watch “The Empire Strikes Back”. No agonising, impossibly long three year wait for him. A mere seven days (five of them at school, mind) and he’s here, innocently sitting on the brink of one of the best cinematic experiences of … Continue reading The Empire Strikes Back (1980) #Rediscovered

Star Wars (1977) #Rediscovered

*SPOILERS* Rediscovered? Yeah, right. An old geek like me had forgotten “Star Wars”. Of course not, I still remember the giddy, obsessive adoration “Star Wars” produced. I remember buying a copy of The Sun on the way to school in late 1982 because it had an article about what was rumoured to happen in the … Continue reading Star Wars (1977) #Rediscovered

24/007: The Complete Craggus’ Bond Voyage

Every Bond movie retrospective, in release order, for your reading convenience. Click on Craggus' Bond Voyage at the end of each review to return here. *SPOILERS*                                                                        … Continue reading 24/007: The Complete Craggus’ Bond Voyage

Skyfall (2012) Review

A major change* occurred in the Bond films when Daniel Craig took over and the impact of that change has been felt more and more in each subsequent film. As of “Casino Royale”, the films were no longer about Bond’s adventures and his mission, they were about Bond himself. Although each film contained the requisite … Continue reading Skyfall (2012) Review

Quantum Of Solace (2008) Review

I don’t really want to spend much time on “Quantum Of Solace”. After all the producers clearly didn’t. The shortest Bond film in the whole series, it’s still not short enough. Developed from a plot created by Michael G Wilson, the script was drafted by the “Casino Royale” team of Neal Purvis, Robert Wade and … Continue reading Quantum Of Solace (2008) Review

Casino Royale (2006) Review

After the bloated extravaganza that was “Die Another Day”, the franchise had crashed back down to Earth. But for once, the behind the scenes legal wrangling would work to Bond’s advantage as a series of trades, deals and mergers finally unified the Bond film rights under a single studio. With Brosnan nearing his 50th birthday … Continue reading Casino Royale (2006) Review

Die Another Day (2002) Review

Production on the 20th (Official) James Bond film was delayed for a year so that the release would line up with the 40th anniversary of “Dr. No” and give the franchise an opportunity to highlight and celebrate its enduring legacy. On something of a roll, the franchise’s confidence was at an all-time high as Neal … Continue reading Die Another Day (2002) Review

The World Is Not Enough (1999) Review

With Brosnan firmly established in the public’s mind as Bond and the franchise now one of the undisputed cinema heavyweights, things were looking good for 007 as the new millennium approached. Taking its title from Bond’s family motto – “The World Is Not Enough” – as revealed in “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service”, new scriptwriters … Continue reading The World Is Not Enough (1999) Review

Tomorrow Never Dies (1997) Review

With Bond firmly re-established as a cinematic heavyweight franchise and “GoldenEye” delivering the best box office returns of the series to date, the pressure was on to build on the success with the next movie. With Martin Campbell reluctant to direct two Bond movies in a row, Roger Spottiswoode was recruited and a script was … Continue reading Tomorrow Never Dies (1997) Review

GoldenEye (1995) Review

Despite the relatively disappointing box office performance of “Licence To Kill”, the team began prepping for the next adventure – rumoured to be called “The Property Of A Lady” for a 1991 release. Once again, however, Bond’s true nemesis would rear its ugly head as the takeover of MGM/ UA by Pathé provoked a legal … Continue reading GoldenEye (1995) Review

Zardoz (1974) Review

Finally released on Special Edition Arrow Blu Ray on the 14th September, "Zardoz" is one of the Seventies’ most bizarre dystopian sci-fi curiosities (in a decade brimming with them), and possibly one of the strangest movies ever to come from a major studio. Coming off the disappointment of a proposed adaptation of “The Lord Of The … Continue reading Zardoz (1974) Review

Licence To Kill (1989) Review

With a new Bond successfully installed, usual writers Richard Maibaum and Michael G Wilson set about drawing up Dalton’s sophomore adventure. Keen to capitalise on Dalton’s harder edged interpretation of the role, the two writers plundered original Fleming novel “Live And Let Die” and the short story “The Hildebrand Rarity” for characters, set pieces and … Continue reading Licence To Kill (1989) Review

The Living Daylights (1987) Review

With Roger Moore finally bowing out, for the first time in nearly fifteen years the producers were looking to cast a new James Bond. When NBC’s “Remington Steele” shenanigans put paid to Pierce Brosnan’s chances at Bond (for the time being, at least), it was a case of cometh the hour, cometh the man. That … Continue reading The Living Daylights (1987) Review

A View To A Kill (1985) Review

Riding high on “Octopussy”’s success, not just at the box office but in seeing off the threat of “Never Say Never Again”, the official Bond franchise pressed ahead with the next instalment. With the public’s affection for Roger Moore’s portrayal of Bond so recently validated, and with the producer’s preferred actors unavailable, the drive to … Continue reading A View To A Kill (1985) Review

Never Say Never Again (1983) Review

Finally making good on his threats, Kevin McClory exercised his bitterly fought, hard won rights to produce his own James Bond movie. The trouble was, said rights were pretty specific. Yes, he could use the characters who appeared in the ‘Thunderball’ novel and he had the rights to particular settings (Shrublands), gimmicks (a motorbike armed … Continue reading Never Say Never Again (1983) Review

Octopussy (1983) Review

Roger Moore had taken some convincing to play James Bond for a fifth time in “For Your Eyes Only” and was reluctant to keep going, feeling he was too old for the part. However, with the looming threat of Sean Connery’s return to the role of 007 in “Never Say Never Again”, the producers were … Continue reading Octopussy (1983) Review

For Your Eyes Only (1981) Review

The series may have scored its best ever box office with “Moonraker”, but the producers weren’t oblivious to the rumblings of discontent over the perceived gimmickry and excesses the series had become synonymous with. While the approach was right for the indulgent, excessive seventies, Bond needed to reinvent himself for the eighties. In came director … Continue reading For Your Eyes Only (1981) Review

Moonraker (1979) Review

So, not “For Your Eyes Only” then? Thanks to the box office shattering impact of “Star Wars” in 1977, Cubby Broccoli – ever a man with an eye for an opportunity – quickly altered his plans and selected “Moonraker”, the most outer space-sounding of Fleming’s novels as the next movie. With an eye firmly on … Continue reading Moonraker (1979) Review

The Spy Who Loved Me (1977) Review

After the lacklustre and low-grossing “The Man With The Golden Gun”, “The Spy Who Loved Me” was to be a crucial film for the Bond franchise. Harry Saltzman had departed as producer due to financial problems, leaving Cubby Broccoli in sole charge. In total twelve writers worked on fifteen drafts of the script - which … Continue reading The Spy Who Loved Me (1977) Review

The Man With The Golden Gun (1974) Review

Encouraged by the success of “Live And Let Die” and the public’s embracing of Roger Moore’s take on 007, United Artists were keen to keep up the momentum and pressed Cubby Broccoli and Harry Saltzman to fast track the next Bond movie. Troubled by behind the scenes problems and a lack of preparation time, “The … Continue reading The Man With The Golden Gun (1974) Review

Live And Let Die (1973) Review

With Americana firmly in the ascendance and coming off the back of the box office revival of “Diamonds Are Forever”, Tom Mankiewicz was given the task of penning the follow-up which would usher in yet another actor as James Bond, 007. The stage was set for a funky, voodoo-infused tale of heroin smuggling and who … Continue reading Live And Let Die (1973) Review

Diamonds Are Forever (1971) Review

Smarting from the disappointing American box office receipts for “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service” (although it was a sizeable hit in the rest of the world) and the departure of their leading man after only one movie, Cubby Broccoli and Harry Saltzman came down with a severe case of the star-spangled reboots. Hell-bent on winning … Continue reading Diamonds Are Forever (1971) Review

On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969) Review

With their star gone, the makers were faced with a real dilemma. Obviously, Bond would have to be recast but should they acknowledge the fact openly in the film. In the end, they settled for a bit of a muddled approach that treated the change of the actor with a few nods and winks (‘This … Continue reading On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969) Review