Red Sparrow (2018) Review

Disney and Marvel can at least rest easy: “Red Sparrow” certainly isn’t the “Black Widow” solo movie by another name its marketing might have initially suggested. Instead, it’s something of a convoluted pseudo- John le Carré caper which leans heavily on sex, nudity and violence to disguise its flimsy characters and overcomplicated espionage shell game. … Continue reading Red Sparrow (2018) Review

The 5th Annual Craggus Movie Awards

2017 continued the previous year’s trend towards ever more polarised reactions to movies. With little room anymore for a ‘middle ground’, movies were either hailed as redefining triumphs or excoriated as blasphemy. Generally, I think I saw more great movies in 2017 than in 2016 but the average score across the 116 new releases I … Continue reading The 5th Annual Craggus Movie Awards

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

Passengers (2016) Review

A surprise contender for ‘Most Divisive Film of 2016’, “Passengers” may not be the sci-fi action thriller the trailers might have led us to expect but there’s still a lot to enjoy in this literal and figurative star vehicle which teams current hot ticket stars Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt. Aboard the starship Avalon, a sleeper … Continue reading Passengers (2016) Review

X-Men: Apocalypse (2016) Review

The latest entry in Fox & Marvel’s own mutant chronicles marks the culmination of the current “First Class” trilogy, as well as the near completion of an almost unprecedented project of rebooting and retconning a much disliked film out of existence. As divisive as “The Last Stand” was, though, we’re still talking about it; which … Continue reading X-Men: Apocalypse (2016) Review

What The Craggus Thought of The Golden Globes 2016

I’ll get to give out my personal nods when it’s time for The Craggus Awards next month but in the meantime, last night’s 2016 Golden Globes ceremony featured the usual mix of well-deserved recognition, belated acknowledgements and head-scratching omissions. Everyone has an opinion on who won and who should have won but, for what it’s … Continue reading What The Craggus Thought of The Golden Globes 2016

Joy (2016) Review

Loosely based on the life of Joy Mangano, inventor of the Miracle Mop, “Joy” offers little more than evidence that David O Russell may be the smuggest filmmaker working in Hollywood today. The dedication of the film to ‘the true stories of daring women. One in particular.’ smacks of the self-satisfaction that permeates the whole … Continue reading Joy (2016) Review

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 (2015) Review

Weighed down by its own unbridled portentousness, the final chapter of “The Hunger Games” saga grinds into cinemas, bleaker and more brutal than anything that’s come before. Unfortunately, it also brings with it the narrative sluggishness which has plagued the franchise and its utter reliance on its leading lady almost brings the story to breaking … Continue reading The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 (2015) Review

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 (2014) Review

I’m not a fan of the growing trend for artificially prolonging a franchise by splitting the last instalment into two parts. There are reasons why trilogies evolved as a dominant storytelling structure rather than tetralogies, even though tetralogy sounds a lot cooler. The “Harry Potter” franchise just about got away with it (thanks to the source … Continue reading The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 (2014) Review

X-Men: Days Of Future Past (2014) Review

While casting envious eyes at the success of “The Avengers” and making plans to attempt to replicate its success, DC/ Warner Brothers have overlooked the other advantage Marvel have over them: there’s more than one studio making Marvel movies. Warner Bros simply doesn’t have the financial resources to match the combined might of Disney, Sony … Continue reading X-Men: Days Of Future Past (2014) Review

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013) Review

I have to admit, I've not read any of  Suzanne Collins' 'Hunger Games' novels. I meant to get around to it before I went to see the films but I ended up catching “The Hunger Games” on DVD at home before I’d opened one of the books. From the first film, I couldn’t really see what … Continue reading The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013) Review