Shane McDonald Facebook pixel
Jason Bourne, 2016 – Film Review

Jason Bourne, 2016 – Film Review

I have always enjoyed the Bourne films and with the last film lacking Matt Damon, I was not sure if this film was being made for the right reasons. The story picks up from the last film which Matt Damon stars in. If you have not seen the other films you are not at too much of a disadvantage. Jason Bourne has dropped off the map and the authorities think he is dead.

Basically, Jason Bourne, played by Matt Damon, has remembered more about his past. The whole espionage backstory is very reminiscent of Edward Snowden and is very technology driven. A hacker discovers more about Bourne’s past and passes the information on to him. The rest of the story documents Bourne’s discovery into how deep this project goes both internally and personally.

From about 10 minutes in there are some incredible chases, mainly on a motorcycle, on the streets of Athens. They track his every move in an effort to neutralise the threat of exposure.

The film globetrotter from country to country including Iceland, Greece, Germany, UK and of course the USA. (In one scene in the UK, the film is shot near Paddington in an area I walked through in April just gone – that scene is very good.)

Tommy Lee Jones plays his role very well, in his typical style, as the CIA director. For me, one of the best cast was Vincent Cassel who plays ‘The Asset’. This guy is only out to get rid of Bourne due to the past history between the two. Surprisingly enough Matt Damon only has a few lines during the film in comparison to some of the others, but the action surely keeps you glued to the screen.

One of the most amazing scenes is the car chase through the streets of Las Vegas, in which the Aria hotel gets a lot of exposure. Many no-claims bonuses list during that chase.

Overall it is a riveting film with plenty of tense, chase and pursuit scenes. The only negative was the constant flashbacks, which I feel there was no need for that many. Not perfect but a highly entertaining film and the endpoints to another Bourne film to follow.

Jason Bourne – Movie Duration Time 2:15

  • Action 95% 95%
  • Storyline 83% 83%
  • Effects 90% 90%
  • Overall 85% 85%
Star Trek Beyond – Film Review

Star Trek Beyond – Film Review

I grew up with Star Trek – The Next Generation and I am loving the new reboot of the movie franchise. The title of the latest release is ‘Star Trek Beyond’. You could certainly believe that the casting of Kirk, Spock, Bones and Scotty are indeed the younger selves from the original series. They play the characters so well. This was one film I wanted to see! So… what’s it like? (Don’t worry there are no spoilers!)

Star Trek Beyond starts with a stop off at Yorktown outpost and from the start it is obvious there is some humour in the film. Directed by Justin Lin, it is a change from J.J Abrams and it is quite relaxed to start off. An early scene sees Captain Kirk having a torn shirt and there is a clear nod to the TV series. Continuing this, the captain complains that it has become a little bit repetitive, as he skims through his wardrobe of identical yellow shirts. How he tore the shirt is more like the movie Critters than Star Trek, but that is half of the fun of the opening.

Any humour and laughs don’t last too long, as Kirk brings the ship out of the stop-over and starts a rescue mission. A distressed alien played by Lydia Wilson has asked Captain Kirk for his help. Kirk is tasked with finding her ship which was marooned on a distant planet on the other side of the nebula. What happens next took me by surprise! Frantic action and Battle Stations as the Enterprise encounters a fleet of aliens commanded by a leader, Krall, played by Idris Elba. I was sure this was either a dream sequence or a simulation – I won’t say any more for fear of spoilers.

On the planet the crew of the enterprise meet an isolated refugee named Jaylah player by Sofia Boutella. Now, the story revolves about how Kirk can save the day with the assistance of Jaylah and the crew of the Enterprise. Jaylah’s character is brilliant, and I loved the humour and the straight-up, matter of fact way she spoke. Her character’s visual style is reliant only on makeup and nor prosthetics or CGI in keeping with the original series.

I much prefer Justin Lin directional flow in Star Trek Beyond, to the JJ Abrams style, with Lin being more flowing and more natural. Even with the action in the film, there is a good flow to the film and at no point did I feel the film was after dropping in action. There are multiple ‘will they won’t they’ scenes and lots of ‘seconds from disaster’ style sequences. He keeps you engaged and the film is just the right length.

Star Trek Beyond is one of my favourites of the rebooted Star Trek films. The film in the credits was, “For Anton”, a reference to Anton Yeltsin which died in a freak car accident this year. The film also has 3 touching moments paying tribute to Leonard Nimoy and there is also an original series cast photo shown during the film.

I really think you have to give Star Trek Beyond a shot. It is humorous, full of action with a decent story and quality effects. I’m already looking forward to the next Star Trek film.

Star Trek Beyond – Trailer

  • Star Trek Beyond – My Rating 88% 88%
Ghostbusters 2016 – Review

Ghostbusters 2016 – Review

All Female Cast in Ghostbusters ‘2016

When I first heard the Ghostbusters was to be remade with an all female cast I was dubious. I also thought it would be a flop as I didn’t like the idea of a remake. This for me was a franchise which I grew up with and I didn’t want a remake just for the sake of it. … Having seen it – I was wrong. It is excellent!

The film is rated 12A and from the start, it’s obvious that the ghosts are a bit more malevolent than the 1980s Ghostbusters films. It has a real retro feel and the song remains unchanged which I was delighted with.

The all female cast works well and there are some really funny scenes, especially with their hired secretary, Kevin. The secretary has all the phone skills of Fr. Dougal Maguire.

If you watch closely from the start, there are cameos from all the 1980s Ghostbusters cast members, including Egon, who stars via a bronze bust in the University. Slimer is also back… with a friend.

3D Ghostbusters or is 2D ok?

If you have the opportunity to see it in 3D then do. The 3D effects are excellent with the spectres 3D rendered outside the 2 black lines on top and bottom of the film reel so it looks like they are outside the film. (If you get my meaning)!

Overall Comments

My only problem with the film is that it is as if New York never had the 1980 Ghostbusters team – I went presuming that it was a follow on but it is a total remake/reinvention of the franchise.

There is also no explanation for a hair colour change on 2 cast members near the end of the film?

Overall a wonderful way to spend an evening and I really enjoyed this new reboot of Ghostbusters.
Remember to stay during the credits and also stay until they are over. There is a bit of a reveal in the post-credits scene.

Ghostbusters Official Trailer

The Revenant

The Revenant

The Revenant is nominated for Best Picture at the Oscars and Leonardo DiCaprio for best actor, and I hope he gets it. However, I’m not sure if The Revenant will win best picture.

The Revenant – Movie Review

I really enjoyed the movie, but the storyline is somewhat dragged out, I found myself at points being a tad bored, not with the film, but with the lack of substantial action. The film could probably have been about 20-30 minutes shorter and would have been no less impactful.

I did enjoy the film and I thought the scenery and setting was stunning. Apparently, the actors had to endure freezing conditions just to shoot the movie. Also, they had to move part of the movie to South America as the snow in the area they were in, was beginning to melt.

The Revenant is up against The Big Short, Bridge of Spies, Brooklyn, Mad Max, The Martian, Room and Spotlight.
I have already seen Brooklyn, The Martian, Room and Spotlight and out of them The Martian, Room and Spotlight were ahead of The Revenant for me.

It will be an interesting choice as the films are of good quality this year, my rating of the films I have seen this far is shown below. 

  • Brooklyn 76% 76%
  • Room 89% 89%
  • The Martian 87% 87%
  • Spotlight 88% 88%
  • The Revenant 82% 82%

Little Britain Nationwide TV Advert featuring England Team

I saw this on TV last night an just thought it was a brialliant advert. It features the England Team and the cast of Little Britain. Sense of Humour and great placement of the Nationwide logo makes for a great advert.

I Know this is a short post but sometimes a picture (in this case a video) is worth a thousand words.

Film Review. Alice in Wonderland (2010)

Alice in Wonderland Movie Review

Please note there are some small spoiler alerts in this movie review

First off,  This is not supposed to be a word for word telling of the famous Alice in Wonderland story – this is actually the second time she has been down the hole. Therefore this is actually a sequel to the Alice in Wonderland story based on the 19th century novels Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass.

Alice (Mia Wasikowska) is now 19 years old who has forgotten about her last childhood journey into Wonderland – yet her dreams still recall the visit. Just as she is proposed to by a insufferable bore of a ginger haired “Lord”, she wisely avoids the proposal of marriage and ends up falling down a rabbit hole and falls back down to Wonderland. Of course she thinks this is all just a dream and plays along for a while. Alice is then given the mission of saving the Wonderland from the madness of the Red Queen played by Helena Bonham Carter (Helena Bonham Carters playing of the Red Queen reminds me of Queenie from Blackadder – even mis-pwe-nounces a wange of words using w’s for r’s). The Red Queen is still as we remember her, obsessed with shouting “Off with her head”.

I though it was quite funny the way she always asked for a warm pig to put her feet on – it is this sort of curiouser and curiouser imagery which makes the film work. The film is just unusual – so don’t go expecting straight forward. One of the main draws of this film is the portrayal of the Mad Hatter by Johnny Depp. This is a very good performance with lots of madness, and a very unusual “Futterwacken” dance, but there is a kind of scottish accent which Depp tries to use but in these places the dialogue is hard to understand. Other characters include the Cheshire Cat which is perfectly voiced by the one and only Stephen Fry.

The film itself has live action and CGI mixed quite well – the film looks amazing … I don’t think it looks like any other film of the last few years in the way digital and film are combined. Don’t go to the film expecting the original “Alice in Wonderland” story – perhaps a title of “Down to Wonderland again” might have been a better title. It is a fun film but there are some scenes younger children might not appreciate (i.e. lots of roaring and chasing monsters). The film flaws are mainly that the story is not as well developed as it could have been and there is a little drama, but being a Disney film this is to be expected but Tim Burton’s visual creativity makes up for any lacking in the film. If you can, see this film in 3D as it does add something extra.

Alice in Wonderland Movie Classification: PG

Director: Tim Burton

Alice in Wonderland Film Cast: Johnny Depp, Mia Wasikowska, Helna Bonham Carter, Anne Hathaway, Crispin Glover, Matt Lucas, Timothy Spall, Alan Rickman, Stephen Fry, Michael Sheen

Alice in Wonderland Rating: 8/10