The Shape Of Water (2018) Review

Guillermo Del Toro brings his trademark dark fairytale aesthetic to bear on this dreamy, beautifully realised tale, a tale as old as time, a song as old as rhyme: beauty and the moist. Elisa (Sally Hawkins), a mute cleaning lady, found as an infant with mysterious scars on her neck works as part of the … Continue reading The Shape Of Water (2018) Review

Black Panther (2018) Review

On the eve of the Infinity War, it’s a demonstration of Marvel’s confidence and courage that they’re prepared to step out of their main narrative to bring us this sumptuous, dazzling and vibrant action adventure movie that has a lot to say not just about the world as the MCU shows it but the real … Continue reading Black Panther (2018) Review

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (2018) Review

Imagine a world where nothing and nobody adheres to a neatly binary system of good and bad and life is messy and compromised. It’s this real world untidiness which lies at the beating heart of “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”, Martin McDonagh’s brash, darkly funny and often shocking fable of small-town disenfranchised American life. Frustrated … Continue reading Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (2018) Review

The Greatest Showman (2017) Review

In the run-up to Christmas, I was very taken by the Sky Movies TV ad showing a mum and her daughter watching “The Sound Of Music” over and over again through the years. For me, it perfectly captured the sentimental sweet spot of Christmas, family and the magic of movies. I found myself wondering what … Continue reading The Greatest Showman (2017) Review

Brigsby Bear (2017) Review

A beautifully understated indie dramedy, “Brigsby Bear”, directed by Dave McCary and produced by The Lonely Island, is a heartfelt and poignant paean to the importance and power of fandom. When James (Kyle Mooney) finds out that his whole life has been a lie concocted by his kidnappers Ted and April Mitchum (Mark Hamill & … Continue reading Brigsby Bear (2017) Review

The Florida Project (2017) Review

The magic kingdom casts a long shadow and there are those who live in the shade, cruelly out of reach of the fairy tale endings tantalisingly promised therein. But, even in the darkest depths of that shade, happiness can be found, if even only for a short while. Over the course of a Florida summer, … Continue reading The Florida Project (2017) Review

Paddington 2 (2017) Review

With the original having been an unexpected delight, anticipation for “Paddington 2” was sky high. Could the little bear from Peru pull off the ‘difficult’ second movie? The answer is an unqualified ‘yes’. Determined to get his Aunt Lucy a special present for her 100th birthday, Paddington (Ben Wishaw) sets his heart on a unique … Continue reading Paddington 2 (2017) 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

Abbott And Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948) #MonthOfSpooks #Review

Having pioneered the 'shared universe' concept by producing a slew of crossover monster movies, Universal decided to go one meta step further and crossover movie genres as well. Tempting Bela Lugosi back to arguably his most famous role as "Dracula", as well as Lon Chaney Jr as "The Wolf Man" and Glenn Strange as Frankenstein's … Continue reading Abbott And Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948) #MonthOfSpooks #Review

Bride Of Frankenstein (1935) #MonthOfSpooks Review

Initially reluctant to do a sequel to the smash hit “Frankenstein”, director James Whale finally relented when Universal agreed to give him full creative control. With the studio out of his way, the only thing standing between Whale and his ultimate vision was Joseph Breen and the Hays Code. Having survived the inferno at the … Continue reading Bride Of Frankenstein (1935) #MonthOfSpooks Review

mother! (2017) Review

I have a near-pathological dislike of people coming into my home uninvited or unannounced. I remember when we first moved into the house we live in, it had a front door which, if it was unlocked, you could just open and walk in, as friends, relatives and in-laws were wont to do. Now, don’t get … Continue reading mother! (2017) Review

It (2017) Review

I remember when I first saw “Harry Potter And The Philosopher’s Stone” in the cinema, it was one of the strangest cinema experiences of my life. I didn’t feel like I’d just watched a film of the boy wizard’s adventures, I just felt like I’d re-read the first book in two and half hours, so … Continue reading It (2017) Review

The Big Sick (2017) Review

Sweet, funny and poignantly insightful, “The Big Sick” is a perfectly pitched romantic comedy semi-autobiographical memoir of how star Kumail Nanjiani met his real life wife. Kumail is making a living as an Uber driver as he tries to get his big break in stand up comedy. After a gig, he meets Emily (Zoe Kazan) … Continue reading The Big Sick (2017) Review

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

Dunkirk (2017) Review

Insistent, cacophonous and unrelenting, the pre-release clamour around “Dunkirk” has been enough to give even the most hype-hardened cinema veteran combat fatigue. When it comes to the list of prerequisites, conditions and riders demanded before you even have the temerity to consider buying a ticket, never before in the field of cinema history has so … Continue reading Dunkirk (2017) Review

War For The Planet Of The Apes (2017) Review

As a rule, I’m not a fan of prequels. But rules were made to be broken, and “War For The Planet Of The Apes” manages to thwart two of mine: it’s a superb prequel and it’s the third chapter of a trilogy which is the best of the three. In the aftermath of Koba’s betrayal … Continue reading War For The Planet Of The Apes (2017) Review

Doctor Who: World Enough And Time (S10E11) Review

*SPOILERS* Okay, we get it. The Twelfth Doctor’s time is coming to an end. DO we really need this many regeneration hints, though? Hang on, though. That snowy landscape looks oddly familiar…and oh, my Doctor…what long hair you have… “World Enough And Time” starts out with a cliff-hanger and doesn’t really let go from there. … Continue reading Doctor Who: World Enough And Time (S10E11) Review

My Life As A Courgette (2017) Review

“My Life As A Courgette” is a tiny little movie about great big things. Clocking in at a mere 66 minutes long, you’d be forgiven for expecting something frothy and whimsical to go along with the eye-catchingly colourful character design. In fact, the movie deals with the weightiest and darkest of subject matters with a … Continue reading My Life As A Courgette (2017) Review

Doctor Who: Extremis (S10E06) Review

*SPOILERS* After playing a blinder last week, what did “Doctor Who” have in store for us this time? Well, after the refreshingly straightforward run of episodes, it opened a can of vintage convoluted timey-wimey whoop-ass which has become the trademark of Moffat’s triumphs/ hallmark of his follies (delete as applicable). Opening with a flashback of … Continue reading Doctor Who: Extremis (S10E06) Review

La La Land (2017) Review

There’s nothing Hollywood likes more than love letters to itself, and “La La Land” is a love letter of such passion and affection for the glamourous halcyon days of old Hollywood that it almost makes you willing to overlook the slightly weird effect CinemaScope has on the actors’ faces in the close-ups. In modern day … Continue reading La La Land (2017) Review

Halloween (1979) #MonthOfSpooks Review

Agreeing to join in @TheMarckoguy’s #MonthOfSpooks finally gave me the push I needed to check out one of the all-time horror classics and erase a shameful gap in my movie-going records. This Halloween, I finally sat down to enjoy…er…”Halloween”. John Carpenter’s 1978 classic (released in 1979 in the UK) is a masterclass in lo-fi, high … Continue reading Halloween (1979) #MonthOfSpooks Review

Trolls (2016) Review

With its DayGlo aesthetic and unashamedly sunny disposition, “Trolls” may prove to be too sugary a confection for some viewers. If, however, you’re a fan of silliness, cuteness and jukebox musicals, “Trolls” is an unabashed delight. Having escaped from the dreaded Bergens long ago, the Trolls are living happily in their hidden forest home. But … Continue reading Trolls (2016) Review

Hunt For The Wilderpeople (2016) Review

Fresh off the triumph of “What We Do In The Shadows”, New Zealand director Taika Waititi’s follow up is a witty and heart-warming adaptation of Barry Crump’s novel “Wild Pork and Watercress”. Troubled, hip-hop-loving orphan Ricky Baker (Julian Dennison) is given one last chance to settle in a foster home or else he's bound for juvey. Child … Continue reading Hunt For The Wilderpeople (2016) Review

Kubo And The Two Strings (2016) Review

Breathtakingly beautiful, Laika’s latest stop motion animation is a dazzling, inspired medley of Japanese and Chinese folklore and a joyous celebration of the power and importance of storytelling. A young boy named Kubo must find and reclaim his father’s lost armour in order to battle and defeat a vengeful enemy who will stop at nothing … Continue reading Kubo And The Two Strings (2016) Review

The BFG (2016) Review

Shining like the most gloriumptious bottled dream, “The BFG” bestrides the lacklustre summer blockbuster season like a magical Colossus of Rhodes. A welcome big screen return for the wonderful imagination of Roald Dahl and an even more welcome return for the Spielberg of old, the master of childlike wonder and spellbinding fantasy. When orphan Sophie … Continue reading The BFG (2016) Review

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

Competition: Win The Limited Edition Steelbook Of Deadpool

Sold out limited edition Zavvi Exclusive Deadpool BluRay Steelbook! Sold out limited edition Zavvi Exclusive Deadpool BluRay Steelbook! Sold out limited edition Zavvi Exclusive Deadpool BluRay Steelbook! Hi, I'm The Craggus, Editor-In-Chief of What The Craggus Saw. Thanks to a purchasing error I am now currently overstocked on Sold Out Limited Edition Zavvi Exclusive Deadpool … Continue reading Competition: Win The Limited Edition Steelbook Of Deadpool

The Jungle Book (2016) Review

A reimagining of a beloved classic film. An all-CGI environment. An all CGI cast except for one role to be played by a child actor making his acting debut. It’s not a recipe which inspires confidence, is it? All the more credit, then, to Director Jon Favreau, Cinematographer Bill Pope and the rest of the … Continue reading The Jungle Book (2016) Review

Zootropolis (2016) Review

The House of Mouse is on something of a roll at the moment, enjoying yet another ‘Golden Age’. It’s not just through its recent acquisitions of Marvel and Lucasfilm that Disney are riding high, their core Animation studio continues to go from strength to strength. Coming hot on the heels of “Wreck It Ralph”, “Frozen” … Continue reading Zootropolis (2016) Review

Deadpool (2016) Review

I am so, so happy for Ryan Reynolds. Seriously, the guy has earned it. He’s tried so hard, so many times and after “Blade: Trinity” [for the record, I quite liked his turn as Hannibal King], “X-Men Origins: Wolverine”, “R.I.P.D.” and – shudder – “Green Lantern”, it’s an absolute delight to see him finally crack … Continue reading Deadpool (2016) Review

The Big Short (2016) Review

It’s a very good thing that “The Big Short” tells its story in such a humorous way because if you weren’t so busy chuckling, you’d be crying. Or possibly howling with rage. The story of the downfall of the American housing market and its knock-on effects which are still reverberating around the global economy may … Continue reading The Big Short (2016) Review

Room (2016) Review

Adapted for the screen - from her own novel - by Emma Donoghue, "Room" is a challenging film to watch. Deeply harrowing, nerve shreddingly tense but ultimately richly rewarding; it’s a beautifully realised story of courage, love and resilience. Ma (Brie Larson) and her young son Jack (Jacob Tremblay) live in ‘Room’. For Jack, Room … Continue reading Room (2016) Review

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

Bridge Of Spies (2015) Review

In these troubled times, America and the world could do worse than to look to the pages of history for some salutary lessons on how to deal with the current volatility we live with. It is serendipitous, then, that Steven Spielberg’s magnificent true life drama “Bridge Of Spies” arrives in cinemas this week to provide … Continue reading Bridge Of Spies (2015) Review

The Lady In The Van (2015) Review

Adapted from his own play, based on his memoir, Alan Bennett’s “The Lady In The Van” is a wonderfully poignant meditation of the nobility of the human spirit and the importance of kindness, compassion and understanding. It tells the [mostly] true story of Bennett’s unusual friendship with an eccentric homeless woman called Miss Mary Shepherd, … Continue reading The Lady In The Van (2015) Review

Doctor Who: The Girl Who Died (S9E05) Review

*SPOILERS* Not a fan of the sonic shades? Then today’s your lucky day, as they’re quickly disposed of by an irate Viking (The post credits ‘Next Time’ sequence hints they'll be back though). And all of this happens after the Doctor has already defeated four and a bit battle fleets and saved Clara from asphyxiation … Continue reading Doctor Who: The Girl Who Died (S9E05) Review

Suffragette (2015) Review

Powerful, gripping, infuriating and heart-breaking in equal measure, Director Sarah Gavron’s “Suffragette” brings a pivotal chapter of British history to vivid life without ever falling prey to feminist diatribe. It charts the story of Maud Watts (Carey Mulligan), a fictional wife and mother who finds herself caught up in the events and activities of the … Continue reading Suffragette (2015) Review

The Martian (2015) Review

There comes a point in “The Martian” where you have to start reminding yourself that it’s just a movie and that this stuff hasn’t really happened. The film will inevitably draw comparisons with “Interstellar” but it shares more of its dramatic DNA with 1995’s “Apollo 13”, such is the air of authenticity and plausibility Ridley … Continue reading The Martian (2015) Review

Doctor Who: The Magician’s Apprentice (S9E01) Review

*SPOILERS* So…he’s back – and he’s not hiding from his enemies. If anything, he’s doing the exact opposite and trying to provoke them: cavorting around the universe like his own private playground, having a blast and taking on his fiercest foes with a brash confidence and an almost complete absence of f**ks to give. I … Continue reading Doctor Who: The Magician’s Apprentice (S9E01) 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

Inside Out (2015) Review

Two long running streaks came to an end when “Inside Out” opened at the American Box Office in June this year. The first was Pixar’s record of always opening as the number one movie thanks to “Jurassic World” continuing to run rampant at the top of the cinematic food chain and despite “Inside Out” scoring … Continue reading Inside Out (2015) Review

Mad Max: Fury Road (2015) Review

Any lingering concerns you may have had about another director named George revisiting a trilogy after thirty years have gone by can be laid to rest. “Mad Max Fury Road” is a triumph: a perfect demonstration of how to harness decades’ worth of advancement in filmmaking technology and techniques without losing sight of what made … Continue reading Mad Max: Fury Road (2015) Review

Kingsman: The Secret Service (2015) Review

Gleefully landing right in the middle of the worthy-but-ever-so-slightly-tedious grind of ‘Award Season’, “Kingsman: The Secret Service” is an outlandish breath of fresh air; an elegant and deceptively clever action comedy thriller which delivers a long-overdue fight back for the gentleman spy of old against the current crop of gritty, serious pretenders to the throne. … Continue reading Kingsman: The Secret Service (2015) Review

Birdman (or The Unexpected Virtue Of Ignorance) (2015) Review

Much has been made of the Meta premise of Michael Keaton playing an aging actor, once famous for playing an iconic superhero, looking to prove his artistic integrity by mounting a Broadway play but there’s so much more to Alejandro González Iñárritu’s technically dazzling, intensely personal and kinetic film than that one single gimmick. Ingeniously … Continue reading Birdman (or The Unexpected Virtue Of Ignorance) (2015) Review

Craggus’ Christmas Countdown Day 24: The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)

So here we are. The advent calendar has just one day left, and it’s time for the final film of Craggus’ Christmas Countdown. I like to think I’ve saved the best for last. “The Muppet Christmas Carol” isn’t just the last great Muppet movie, it’s also one of the best adaptations of “A Christmas Carol” … Continue reading Craggus’ Christmas Countdown Day 24: The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)

Paddington (2014) Review

“Paddington” is a delightful film. Literally delightful. While watching it, I was acutely conscious of the fact that I was being delighted. I’m experiencing delight, I thought to myself. There’s no other way to describe the experience of watching this note-perfect adaptation of the beloved children’s character which brings him to big screen life in … Continue reading Paddington (2014) Review

Mr Turner (2014) Review

Beyond being vaguely aware he was a painter, I knew nothing of the work or life of J M W Turner. I came out of Mike Leigh’s “Mr Turner” determined to learn more about this exceptional man and keen to find out which galleries display his work so I can go and see them for … Continue reading Mr Turner (2014) Review

Doctor Who: Death In Heaven (S8E12) Review

*SPOILERS* As the brief cold open crashed into the opening credits, my heart was warmed by the thought of hundreds of bitter, angry Whovians, who were only hate watching the episode to stoke their rage about Missy’s reveal last week, doing a hilarious spit take at Clara’s declaration that she, in fact, had been the … Continue reading Doctor Who: Death In Heaven (S8E12) Review

Guardians Of The Galaxy (2014) Review

Do you remember when summer SciFi blockbusters were unashamedly fun? Do you remember how you felt watching “Return Of The Jedi”? Before you got all old and cynical and ironic. Before your “Star Wars” heart was hardened by special edition vandalism and successive soulless prequels? Before the angry words and bitter sentiment of a million revisionist … Continue reading Guardians Of The Galaxy (2014) Review