Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Writing for The Daily Heckle... and Getting Paid!

Do any of my talented blogging buddies want to get paid for writing? I know we all do it for the love deep down in our hearts, but sometimes it's bloody nice to get a bit of cash for pouring out all these words into the blogosphere!

I've been writing for The Daily Heckle for a while now and I'm racking up a nice bit of cash towards a summer holiday by publishing articles over there. I've mostly been talking film, as quite frankly I'm not qualified to talk about much else in life! But The Daily Heckle is a place where bloggers unite and heckle the world about anything they wish.

Once you sign up to become a heckler, you will find that there are loads of topics constantly being added in The Heckle Workshop and you can pitch your own ideas for how to write an article. Or if you don't suffer from writer's block, then just pitch some ideas of your own! Lots of lists, lots of opinions, lots of fun, and lots of money! They are really quick and efficient at paying over there too, so as soon as you're article is ready to go, you will be notified that you have been paid.

I assume most people that read this will be into movies and there are always loads of movie lists that need writing, but if you are into other stuff, then there is always that too. Want to slag off the royal family for instance? Well there's a job going that pays £10 to do just that... actually hold on I think I want that one! (Just kidding... sign up and take it now before I say something that will get me into trouble!)

These are all the articles that I have written for The Daily Heckle so far. Please give them a read, then head on over and get signed up to become a heckler yourself!

Furious 7 and the Movies That Make a Billion

 

What's new in the latest Terminator Genisys trailer?

 

Furious 7, M:I 5 and the Movie Franchises That Refuse to Die 

 

Mad Max, Mission Impossible and the Return of Real Movie Stunts

 

7 Music Videos That Changed the World

 

Top 10 Must See Movie Sequels in 2016

 

Top 10 Must See Superhero Films and Videogame Adaptations in 2016

 

Top 10 Must See Films of 2016: No Sequels, No Superheroes

 

Top 10 Most Shocking Moments from Game of Thrones

 

5 Scary Movies That Kids Will Enjoy

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

A Little Chaos Review



Set in France in 1682, Kate Winslet plays a talented landscape designer, who is tasked with building a garden at Versailles for King Louis XIV. Struggling to overcome a great loss in her life, Winslet’s Sabine is closed off to the ideas of chaos in the world, even as those around the king believe that inviting a woman of low birth into the gardens is madness and destined for disaster.

Sabine is given the royal assignment by the handsome Andre Le Notre, played by Matthias Schoenaerts, a man who is trapped in a thankless marriage to a woman who believes he is beneath her. Sabine is thrust into the midst of the court of the king but jealousy threatens her standing, her ability to complete the garden, and a burgeoning romance with Andre.


Despite playing the king, Alan Rickman directs but does not step in front of the camera quite as much as you would expect, instead letting Winslet and Schoenaerts take centre stage in this period romance. It’s a shame as the love story barely simmers while Winslet and Rickman’s few scenes together actually start to sizzle with something a little more exciting.

The romance feels as though it has been played out a thousand times before and the less said about Sabine’s tragic back story, the better. However, A Little Chaos comes to life, particularly towards the end in a pair of scenes, one delivering some heart warming female bonding and the other offering a rousing climax.

In amongst all this though, is a lot of talk of gardening. There is little danger and far too little conflict. Winslet seems subdued, leaving it up to Stanley Tucci to steal his too-few scenes and Rickman to swan in and save the film from becoming utterly boring. It’s a stately, occasionally quite beautiful film but unless you are a fan of gardening or mostly chaste romances, you will yearn for something more.

Overall, A Little Chaos could have done with a lot more conflict, danger, excitement and yes... chaos.

Watch the trailer:


Recent reviews from I Love That Film:


John Wick

Lost River

Wild Card

Still Alice

White God

Wild Tales

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

John Wick Review



Sad Keanu is ex-hitman John Wick, mourning the loss of his wife whose parting gift to him was a cute little puppy. Rolling around in his beloved Mustang 69, he has the misfortune to bump into the son of a dangerous Russian gangster. Played by Alfie Allen, aka Theon from Game of Thrones, this nasty little man proceeds to take everything Wick loves, meaning Wick is forced to come out of retirement in order to get revenge.

Luckily, Wick’s skills in the hitman department have far from deserted him and he is more than happy to bring the hurt on anyone who stands in his way of getting to the man who killed his pooch. Formerly known as The Boogeyman, he’s the kind of guy who can take out three guys with just a pencil. With the firepower he now has, it doesn’t matter how many goons get thrown in his direction, Wick has a wonderful way of killing them all.


Directed by two stunt experts, Wick is action packed, stylish and blood thirsty. This is a film for people who don’t mind how slight the story is, as long as the action gets your blood pumping and the blood keeps spilling. It’s a very simply revenge tale, but it’s also well worth noting that John Wick has some really interesting (and bizarre) touches thrown into the mix.

Wick knows a lot of the people he has tasked himself with taking out. This leads to some very amusing exchanges and also makes Wick a pretty murky character himself. The world of the film is also unique with a hotel for hitmen that lives by its own rules, where all assassinations are off under the roof of this supposedly safe haven. Little touches like this make the recently announced sequel an interesting prospect, even if mostly all anyone will want to see is the brutally stylish and kinetically directed fight scenes, excitingly mixing gunplay with martial arts.

John Wick is no Matrix, but it’s certainly one of Reeves’ best since.

Watch the trailer:

Lost River Review


Fair play to Ryan Gosling for beginning (and possibly ending if some critics are to be believed) his directing career with Lost River. His debut behind the camera could have taken the Mel Gibson route and had him playing a Scottish hero riding into battle for freedom or it could have favoured the Joseph Gordon Levitt approach and featured him snogging Scarlet Johansson every few minutes.

However, Gosling has chosen to do neither of these things and does not star in his own film, instead remaining firmly behind the camera on Lost River. His influences however, are all up on the screen for cinephiles to see, and it’s an eclectic mix that ranges from Malick to Lynch to Refn and is bound to alienate a lot of fans of even his most out-there acting work.


Lost River follows a family on the outskirts of recession-hit Detroit who are struggling to make ends meet as the poverty-stricken population desert the place. A single mother (Christina Hendricks) and her two sons have fallen behind on the mortgage payments so she takes a job offered to her by her creepy bank manager (Ben Mendelsohn). The new job is in a terrifyingly Lynchian nightclub where faked stabbings and all manner of weirdness is on the menu for those who seek an escape from the crushing poverty outside.

Meanwhile, the woman’s oldest son (Iain De Caestecker) begins a relationship with a girl (Saoirse Ronan) who has a pet rat and a mute grandmother. Their budding romance is threatened by Matt Smith’s thug Bully who roams the empty streets like a savage beast, looking to hurt anyone in his path.

It is a very brave debut from a star who could coast by on his looks but has chosen a far darker path in both his acting and now his directing. It looks stunning, makes little narrative sense, but is so arresting in its imagery, ideas and atmosphere, that the desire for a story slowly disappears. Lost River could be the pretentious brain fart of a spoiled A-lister with too much money to play with but the beauty, mystery and all round oddness of it make it one that is likely to be studied in years to come. Gosling may have nicked a lot from his idols, but he's done it with style. 

Here is the trailer:


Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Wild Tales is out now in UK cinemas

If you live anywhere near London, you can now catch Wild Tales at a variety of cinemas in the capital. I first saw Wild Tales at Cannes in 2014 where it was one of my absolute favourites of the festival, along with the also excellent White God. My review of Wild Tales is at Tastic Film here but here is a short snippet:

 "There is unlikely to be a funnier film in Cannes this year than the brilliantly bonkers and hysterically over the top anthology of short episodes that comprise director Damián Szifrón’s Wild Tales. Never has watching a collection of diverse characters being pushed to their limits and spectacularly losing control been as much fun as it is in this violent but hilarious film from Argentina..."

I don't know how long the film will remain in cinemas but it seems to be on at a few different places in London over the next week or so. I'm sure it will be coming to an independent art-house cinema near you, so don't miss it!

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Tuesday, 31 March 2015

30 Must See Movies in 2016

Whether it's comic books, videogames, books, sequels or something a little more original you are after, these three lists I have written for The Daily Heckle should hopefully have everyone covered. There are going to be a huge amount of adaptations and franchise additions in 2016 so strap in and read on for my 30 Must See Movies of 2016, handily divided into three different lists!

Top 10 Must-See Films of 2016: No Sequels, No Superheroes (but just one spin off)

Top 10 Must-See Superhero Films and Videogame Adaptations in 2016

Top 10 Must-See Sequels in 2016

Top 10 Male Performances in 2014

Better late than never I always say. Following up on my top 10 female performances of 2014, now it's time for the men. These were all released in the UK in 2014.




10. Andy Serkis in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

9. Macon Blair in Blue Ruin

8. Casey Affleck and Christian Bale in Out of the Furnace

7. Michael Fassbender in Frank

6. Guy Pearce in The Rover

5. Ralph Fiennes in The Grand Budapest Hotel

4. Matthew MacCougnahey in Dallas Buyers Club (and Interstellar)

3. Dan Stevens in The Guest

2. Jake Gyllenhaal in Nightcrawler


Thursday, 26 March 2015

Wild Card Review



It would be nice to say that Jason Statham unleashes his wild side in Wild Card but actually this film finds him on relatively restrained form compared to stuff like The Transporter and Crank films.

From a William Goldman script based on his own novel, Wild Card begins with a woman being ditched outside a hospital bloodied and battered. It's up to Las Vegas security consultant Nick Wild (Statham) to find the men responsible. Roughed up beyond recognition by a fighter and his bodyguards, the woman is Holly and as soon as she is out of hospital, she contacts Nick as he is the only person in Vegas who is able to help her with his particular set of skills.


Offering up some graphic detail of her rape and humiliation, Wild Card should leave audiences chomping at the bit for Statham to unleash the pain on her tormentors. Unfortunately Dominik García-Lorido is completely unconvincing as a victim of such a horrendous ordeal and the script cares little for the trauma she has endured and much more about how Statham will respond. When he sarcastically utters 'this is the highlight of my career', you suspect no acting was required.

Boxer Danny DeMarco is the vicious thug hiding up in his swanky Vegas suite. It takes almost 40 minutes for Statham to confront him and show off what he can do and when the action comes, it’s swift and brutal. With a total of just three fight scenes in the entire film, it is likely that even those that are after a simple Statham beat-em-up will be left disappointed by this one.

When revenge is served and Wild goes on a gambling binge, like in the recent The Gambler, it’s incredibly difficult to sympathise with someone who keeps raising the stakes and risking throwing away obscene amounts of money. Nick has a soft spot for Blackjack and just can't walk away from the tables, even when he's half a million up. It’s a typical plot device that will leave many screaming with frustration at the screen.

Despite a cool soundtrack and last minute appearance from a coolly sinister Stanley Tucci, overall Wild Card could have dealt a considerably better hand.

Here is the trailer: