Movie: Jack Reacher: Never Go Back

April 6, 2017

I am a big fan of the Jack Reacher character.  I’ve read all the books and do find that the character is better in the books than as played by Tom Cruise in the movies.  It is odd really but while I think the movies are great and both movies so far closely follow two of the novels they are still very different.  However, I’m getting ahead of myself.

I read the novel “Never Go Back” in 2014 and going by the blog post I wasn’t that impressed by the plot.  The movie however was excellent.  Reacher is enigmatic and distant as ever but can see clues no one else can and put the pieces together faster than anyone.  Of course he can handle himself in fights as well but it’s the problem solving that keeps the plot moving.

Great movie, would watch again!


Movie: Dr Strange

April 5, 2017

While on holiday at Crieff Hydro, I had the rare opportunity to catch a movie and this is what was showing.  I’m somewhat ambivalent to Marvel movies and don’t fully understand the relationships between the different superheros.  I probably wouldn’t have gone to see this one at the cinema but really enjoyed it.

I didn’t know anything about the Dr Strange character before watching, but was aware of the movie and I like Benedict Cumberbatch.

The movie is the origin story of Dr Strange who, when we first meet him is a highly intelligent and skilled neurosurgeon with a massive ego.  As a man who has always been in control of his own destiny when he is in a car accident and looses the use of his hands he is a broken man.  He eventually find his way to Nepal where he studies under the Ancient One (which is a fantastic performance by Tilda Swinton)

After that lots of metaphysical, interdimensional, mystic arts stuff happens.

I really enjoyed this film, it’s a good stand alone movie for someone like me who doesn’t know the back story or context of this character within the Marvel universe and frankly isn’t intereted in finding out – but just wants to watch a good movie.


Review of 2016

January 1, 2017

The summary of my ever diminishing blog posts for 2016 (and some other things that I haven’t posted but which would be worth noting)… as ever please note this is only to help me remember things I really don’t know why anyone else would be interested.  Previously 200920102011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015

The blog originally included a lot more about what I did or thought, now it is mainly ‘reviews’ of books read and only really so that I can look back and be prompted which one is which since in general I read fast paced thrillers which are more or less the same… go figure :-/

 

MOVIES (cinema)

Events (anything significant to remember)

  • 24 Aug:  Lewis first day at Nursery
  • 3 Nov: Rachel born

Cycling (new to 2016 now I have Garmin and record things)

  • 2016 totals:
    247 rides
    126 hours
    1415.5 miles
    41,270 ft gain

    Rides worth recording:

  • 11 Sept:  Pedal for Scotland Glasgow to Edinburgh
    — 45miles — 3hr 25 (moving time) — 4hr 17 (total time)
    — 1600 ft gained — 13mph average speed — 30mph fastest speed

BOOKS read this year….

Holidays

  • March: Center Parks (just us)
  • April: Center Parks (Cheung clan)
  • April: Crieff Hydro
  • July: Isle of Lewis

Other Highlights:

  • Jan: Car was stolen
  • Feb: Got a new car
  • March: Danar 40!
  • April: lots of Holidays
  • July: last ever CLAN Gathering
  • July: Michael’s Wedding
  • Sept: Pedal for Scotland
  • Nov: Daughter born !
  • Dec: Danar moved from iPhone to Android :-0

Youtube uploads:

Running Totals:

  • 2009 – 23 books – 6 Movies – 4 gigs/events
  • 2010 – 33 books – 13 Movies – 10 gigs/events – 6 meals – 4 holidays
  • 2011 – 18 books – 2 Movies – 3 gigs/events – 1 meals – 3 holidays
  • 2012 – 16 books – 7 Movies – 3 gigs/events – 3 meals – 4 holidays
  • 2013 – 8 books – 2 Movies – 0 gigs/events – 1 meals – 2 holidays – 1 Son
  • 2014 – 1 books – 3 Movies – 2 gigs/events – 4 holidays
  • 2015 – 18 books – 2 Movies – 2 gigs/events – 3 holidays – 6 videos
  • 2016 – 34 books – 2 Movies – 1 events – 4 holidays – 4 videos – 1 daughter

Movie: Stormy Weather (1943)

December 31, 2016

October 2016 (forgot to post at the time)

Using up tickets we were given months ago for GFT but found it difficult to get around to so when we had the opportunity to go we just chose the best available film and found this ‘gem’.  It was on as part of Black History Month and is (or should be) famous for a number of things, it is one of the only major Hollywood films of that time with an entirely black cast.  The film includes the most famous and iconic black singers and dancers of the time, such as Bill “Mr Bojangles” RobinsonLena HorneCab CallowayFats WallerThe Nicholas Brothers.

However, the movie itself suffers from being copied too many times.  While the acrobatic tap routine from the Nicholas Brothers is breathtaking we have seen it imitated a million times and with a modern perspective it is difficult to watch this and appreciate that this is the first time these moves were ever seen.  It also isn’t a very sophisticated or well executed plot as all it is really trying to do is keep things moving till there is an excuse for another song and dance number.  But putting that aside as a piece of history it is extraordinary, as a night out it was pleasant enough and viewed in the wonderful GFT.


Movie: Florence Foster Jenkins

May 19, 2016

A rare evening at the GFT to watch Meryl Streep & Hugh Grant in Florence Foster Jenkins.

movieThe movie is the true story of a New York heiress in the 1940s who supported the arts and has a dream of being a great singer.  However, Florence can’t sing.  She has passion and love of music and those around her simply don’t tell her how bad she is. 

At private recitals, her devoted husband and manager, St Clair Bayfield, managed to protect Florence from the truth by manipulating the audience and press. But when Florence decided to give her first public concert at New York’s Carnegie Hall, St Clair can’t keep the true reviews from her. 

It is also worth mentioning, Simon Helberg‘s performance as pianist Cosme McMoon who steals many of the scenes in this film.  It is difficult not to see him as his character from The Big Bang Theory but he is fantastic in this film.  This movie is both hilarious and moving.  The relationships appear eccentric and self-serving but towards the end we see just how devoted St Clair is to Florence and that her audiences do care for the vulnerability she puts forward.  A lovely and very funny movie.


Review of 2015

December 31, 2015

Previously: 200920102011, 2012, 2013, 2014.   Now for the summary of my ever diminishing blog posts for 2015 (this is becoming just a place to note down books and movies)… as ever please note this is only to help me remember things I really don’t know why anyone else would be interested:

MOVIES (cinema)

Gigs, Events & Theater

  • Jan: Scripture Union weekend (my first)
  • July: CLAN (in Largs)

BOOKS read this year….

Holidays

  • March: Ribby Hall
  • Aug: Isle of Lewis
  • Sept: Crieff Hydro

Other Highlights:

  • Jan: Weekend in Dunoon celebrating Ross’s 40th
  • April: Son turned 2, talks, sings, likes to sleep beside me, is great fun!
  • May: Got the garden fixed up
  • July: 2 Year of Cycling to Work
  • August: Started Gaelic Saturday club – trying to learn a new language
  • Sept: 2 Years of condensed 4 day week to have Monday’s with Lewis

Youtube uploads:

Running Totals:

  • 2009 – 23 books – 6 Movies – 4 gigs/events
  • 2010 – 33 books – 13 Movies – 10 gigs/events – 6 meals – 4 holidays
  • 2011 – 18 books – 2 Movies – 3 gigs/events – 1 meals – 3 holidays
  • 2012 – 16 books – 7 Movies – 3 gigs/events – 3 meals – 4 holidays
  • 2013 – 8 books – 2 Movies – 0 gigs/events – 1 meals – 2 holidays – 1 Son
  • 2014 – 1 books – 3 Movies – 2 gigs/events – 4 holidays
  • 2015 – 18 books – 2 Movies – 2 gigs/events – 3 holidays – 6 videos

Movie: Spectre

December 31, 2015

A little late in blogging about this movie we went to see about a month ago.  Specter, of course, is the latest Bond movie and personally I think the Daniel Craig reboot of Bond is outstanding and plot lines from all of these recent movies come together in this plot.

movieThe opening sequence alone, is utterly amazing with what appears to be a long continuous shoot (but probably isn’t – I really would like to see a ‘making of’ even just that sequence).