[Movies of the Month] July

July

1ST TIMERS
Miss You Already 
– Emotional engaging from start to finish; very well put together. ★★★★
The Monuments Men – An interesting story with some poignant moments coupled with comedic ones. Isn’t particularly standout, though, considering its all-star cast. ★★★½
Mr. Holmes – This captures the infamous Holmes at a different point in his life. McKellen delivers a great performance and while it is a slow burner, it keeps your attention throughout. ★★★½
Allegiant – As the story progresses the concept and becomes intriguing. It’s a shame that the final edition will be straight-to-DVD. ★★★½
Predestination – Definitely a sci-fi mind-bender, leading you to question ‘have I got this right?’ multiple times. ★★★
Pressure – A fair few ‘on the edge of your seat’ moments but the characters aren’t particularly likeable. ★★★
Dead Calm – Interesting concept and the leading trio give good performances, especially Zane. ★★★½

REWATCHES
Top Gun – An oldie but a goldie, this never fails to have me quoting and singing along. ★★★½
The Way – Uplifting and inspiring, Sheen is perfectly cast and carries the film well. ★★★★
Now You See Me – Part way through I realised I had already seen this film, which doesn’t say a lot for it. My rating is based on the special effects and the concept of the film rather than the delivery of it. ★★★

Total: 10

Since 1st January 2016 

New releases: 9
1st timers: 50
Rewatches: 39
Total: 98

[Movies of the Month] June

June

1ST TIMERS
4th Man Out 
– Quite entertaining but ultimately forgettable. ★★½
Rain Man – Uplifting and thoughtful, I can see why this is considered a classic. ★★★★
L!fe Happens – Amusing and thoughtful in places. However, the stars go to Bosworth’s fantastic, bolshie character. ★★★½
Hackers – Entertaining and completely of its time. Is this ripe for remake? My friends say ‘yes’. ★★★½
The Hundred-Foot Journey – Enjoyable from start to finish. I have found an Achilles’ heel for the might Mirren, though: her French accent needs more work. ★★★★
Today’s Special – Very slow with uninteresting characters. ★★
A Walk in the Woods – Nolte does a great job as Katz but Bryson lacks intensity. Perhaps this was Redford’s performance. Perhaps it’s how Bryson is in real life. ★★★

REWATCHES
Scream – The original slasher film and best. ★★★½
X-2: X-Men United – Cox’s Stryker adds some gravitas to the canon, and this film certainly take a darker turn because of it. ★★★½
X-Men: The Last Stand – The grand finale puts a variety of mutant abilities on display. Special effects have certainly improved since then (2006) but this does still hold its own. ★★★★
X-Men: Days of Future Past – Action-packed from start to finish, I still think that the bringing together of the ‘classic’ X-Men actors with the new team worked very well. ★★★★½

Total: 11

Since 1st January 2016 

New releases: 9
1st timers: 43
Rewatches: 36
Total: 88

[Movies of the Month] May

May

NEW RELEASES
Special Correspondents – Plenty of laughs and while predictable in parts, ultimately very enjoyable. ★★★½
Captain America: Civil War – Action-packed from beginning to end, i particularly enjoyed that it answered the question of what happens after the baddies have been caught and the ‘heroes’ have left the scene. ★★★★
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies – Better than I was expecting! It stays faithful to (and enhances in parts) the overall plot with, of course, added zombies. ★★★½
Deadpool – Very entertaining and refreshing to watch a Superhero flick that doesn’t take it’s self too seriously. Very bloody, though. ★★★★
How to be Single – Entertaining and relatable; Dakota Johnson is a fairly likable but dull lead. ★★★

1ST TIMERS
I Am Love 
– Well acted and shot, but ultimately slow and dull. ★★★

REWATCHES
The Impossible – Moving and perfectly cast. ★★★★
Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy – A stellar cast but I still find my attention wandering. ★★★
Star Wars: The Force Awakens – I’m still loving this film; entertaining, uplifting and leaves you wanting more. ★★★★½
Guardians of the Galaxy – See above. ★★★★½
X-Men – Still holds its own many years later; McKellen and Stewart make up for some fairly wooden acting in parts. ★★★½

Total: 11

Since 1st January 2016 

New releases: 9
1st timers: 36
Rewatches: 32
Total: 77

[Set visit] Once Upon a Time at Steveston, BC

In May, my boyfriend and I visited wonderful Canada. It had been a long time coming; we booked the flights back in July 2015.

We had planned the itinerary so that we would visit Vancouver and then catch a ferry across to Vancouver Island. Once back in Vancouver we would hire a car and travel to Jasper and Banff in the Canadian Rockies.

Aside from the usual sightseeing activities in Vancouver like Stanley Park and Granville Island, there was one place in particular that I had on my agenda: a trip to Steveston, filming location for ABC’s Once Upon a Time.

We visited during one of the best days of weather that we had during the trip, which added to the already lovely atmosphere that the historic salmon canning town has.

Some filming was taking place, which I will explain in a later post, and it became apparent that Steveston is frequented by the film industry due to its location, accessibility and accommodating residents.

DSC00941

Recognising OUAT’s iconic clock tower – previously one of Steveston’s prominent fishing supplies store – I knew immediately that I was on the right road.

A large amount of OUAT filming takes place on Moncton Street. You recognise the gas station, the cannery a little further up and, of course, the real life café that is used as Granny’s Diner.

Several signs are still up, including Mr Gold – Pawnbroker and Antiquities Dealer and Dr Archibald Hopper, MD – Pyschiatrist, and the ice-cream shop featured heavily in season four, Any Given Sundae, is still dressed ready for filming. Apart from that, though, there is little else. The only overtly sign that the town is recognising the association is a merchandise display in the post office.

Steveston is a lovely town to spend a few hours walking around, and I was relieved to see that it hasn’t attempted to heavily ‘cash in’. It certainly has a rich heritage of its own.

[Movies of the Month] April

April

NEW RELEASES
High-Rise – Bizarre but fascinating (and scarily realistic) take on life and culture within a high rise block of flats. ★★★½

1ST TIMERS
A Room for Romeo Brass 
– Very much a character piece; Considine shines in his feature film debut. ★★★½

REWATCHES
The Lord of the Rings – The Two Towers – Still my favourite of the trilogy; epic battle, more beautiful music, more stunning scenery . ★★★★★
The Lord of the Rings – The Return of the King – A fitting conclusion to an incredibly strong trilogy. ★★★★½
Blue Crush – Three stars awarded for the stunning scenery and girl power ethos rather than the borderline acting and weak love story. ★★★
The World’s End – First rewatch and still plenty of laughs. ★★★½
Shaun of the Dead – Probably my favourite Pegg/Frost collaboration, this never fails to put a smile on my face. ★★★★
The Hobbit – An Unexpected Journey – Several rewatches later and I still get the same goosebumps as the music begins and we return to Middle-earth. ★★★★
The Hobbit – The Desolation of Smaug – Bilbo comes into his own, revealing himself to certainly be (in mine and my boyfriend’s opinion) the most brave and strong of Tolkien’s hobbits, and actually one of the courageous of all Tolkien’s characters. ★★★★
The Hobbit – The Battle of the Five Armies – The extended scenes were particularly noticeable in BOTFA and added a lot more atmosphere to the film. ★★★★
Snow White and the Huntsman – Still a stunning film visually but my enjoyment is going down on each rewatch. ★★★
The Italian Job – First rewatch in many, many years; an absolute classic that I appreciate more now that I have owned a classic Mini. ★★★★

Total: 12

Since 1st January 2016 

New releases: 4
1st timers: 35
Rewatches: 27
Total: 66

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