What’s Been Watched This Month – December 2021

Here’s what square eyed Mikey Wolfman been watching throughout December 2021.

First up a MASSIVE BIG happy New Year to you and hope 2022 brings beautiful things.

The TV

Loki – I went and put my monthly Disney+ payments to the test this festive season. First up I gave Thor’s naughty and mischievous brother Loki a go. Transported to a kind of limbo land by a time agency of police enforcement to be sentenced for his crimes, Loki has to use his wits and skills to try and escape. Owen Wilson joins Tom Hiddleston for this witty and fun fantasy adventure. It’s also great to see a classic British thespian turn up and strut some fine ham about on screen later in the series. The story follows cleverly straight on from a screen during the Avengers Endgame (2019). It’s good fun.

Hawkeye – Festive Marvel with our bow and arrow human hero Clint Barton (Jeremy Renner). With the backdrop of New York Christmas this was an apt and entertaining short mini series. Aging reluctant hero Clint just want’s to go home and spent the weeks build up to xmas with his loving family. It’s all planned out until annoying rich kid Kate Bishop (Hailee Steinfeld) crosses his path and all hell breaks lose. Kate Bishop has mastered her skills around Clint Hawkeye ever since she witnessed him take on the alien invasion in The Avengers (2012). Soon the two are kind of working together as gangs and villains start to stack up against them. You know what, I wasn’t that into it with the first 2 episodes but I hang on in there as I enjoy talking to my son about these shows. Then right from episode three it had me hooked. It might actually be my favorite from all the Marvel Disney series. It doesn’t take itself too seriously and inter slices many aspects from newer comic book adventures. The story and villains twist and turn and you are blessed with a ridiculously entertaining final episode that has every enemy fighting against each other right outside the Rockefeller Christmas tree. Whereas most of the threat is done with a slice of lightheartedness it’s not until the addition of an old villain from a past Marvel Netflix series arrives and adds real danger to the escalating carnage. I had big fun with Hawkeye.

Ghosts – Had the third series of this wonderful little British comedy recorded on the Tivo box. Waiting for when my daughter was back for xmas as I did for last years series. It’s just the wonderful silly kind of humour we so love. This is from the original Horrible Histories crew. A brilliant children’s television show we watched together as the kids were growing up. The HH crew made the jump into more adult TV with the hilarious surreal show called Yonderland. Ghosts is about a collection of spirits that have died in or around an old country house throughout the ages and now inherited by young couple. Once again the writing team have really come into their game. Such a fun six episodes and another Christmas special too for the cherry on the top. BTW for the love of all things sacred why the fook has America thought it would be a good idea to remake it? OK if the original was say rubbish but as it’s not why can’t they just watch that and leave it alone? LOL…. It’s here Ghosts US

Mortimer & Whitehouse: Gone Fishing. There’s been four seasons so far and it was another lovely surprise to see they had made another hour long Christmas special. It’s such a chilled show and I’m not even into fishing. Two old friends, Bob Mortimer and Paul Whitehouse tolerate each other as they go fishing together. Paul picks the fishing spots and Bob sorts the food and somewhere to stay. Both are comedians I’ve grown up with and in a funny way shaped our generation’s humour. Along the way they share personal and comic experiences of life as they travel around different picturesque landscapes the country.

“All roads lead to The Expanse final season next week, now that’s a sci-fi epic saga!!” Were my words last month. I’m halfway through the mini finale of just 6 episodes and it really doesn’t feel like it’s going anywhere. The main issue and I hate to say it is the main antagonist and his son. A cross between hammed up overacting and really annoying. The science fiction saga has been one of my favorites and have actually watched the whole thing twice already, which is something I never do. Maybe I’m just too close to it but I feel I’m gonna be disappointed before I even get to the end. I hope and really wish my feelings to be wrong and they smash out a perfect ending right on the eleventh hour!!! Yep I know I gotta keep the faith. Buckle up Mikey and get ready for the juice. Though to be totally honest I’m just happy to be watching Roberta ‘Bobbie’ W. Draper (Frankie Adams) squeezed into her Martian battle suit. She could throw me around in zero G 247/365 hehe

The Films

11 films this month and a total of 163 this year
1099 since the start of the blog in January 2017.

Rebel Without a Cause (1955) – Wolfman Rating 8.5 – IMDB Rating 7.7
Haha at last I got to this one. I know you want to know what I thought? Well if you do I got my review right here ready to go.

Dead End (1937) – Wolfman Rating 7 – IMDB Rating 7.3
Director William Wyler brings a young Humphrey Bogart to play the tough “Baby Face” Martin who revisits the New York City slum he had fought his way out of. All played out on one big set we watch as Sylvia Sidney and Joel McCrea try to live and hopefully crawl their way out of the slum. With all the focused drama around the three main stars there are also a gang of annoying youth called the Dead End Kids. Claire Trevor has a small but shocking standout role playing Baby Face’s old flame, Francey.

Escape Route (1952) – Wolfman Rating 5.5 – IMDB Rating 5.5
Also known as I’ll Get You. This on paper sounds amazing and a Cold War drama are always right up my street. After leading nuclear scientists are kidnapped and taken behind the Iron Curtain an American called Steve Rossi (George Raft) turns up in London and starts investigating. He is soon joined by the beautiful British agent Joan Miller (Sally Gray) as we try to decipher, along with them, what is going on. It’s pretty average to be honest which was a shame as it’s all there for some good old fashioned espionage fun.

The Rescue (2021) – Wolfman Rating 9 – IMDB Rating 8.4
I’m sure like me you were panic and distraught by the horrendous news of the twelve boys and their football coach who got lost and trapped deep inside a flooded cave in Thailand. This excellent made documentary uses real footage and brilliantly staged realistic reenactments that are a real gut punch of terrifying drama. The sheer scale of the operation is ridiculously unimaginable. The rescue mission is completely nuts and mindbogglingly horrifying. It’s hard to try and keep a dry eye whilst watching. I didn’t manage it.

Ladybug Ladybug (1963) – Wolfman Rating 8.5 – IMDB Rating 7.2
Cold War paranoia as a school’s missile warning alarm goes off. I did a review of this one here.

Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021) – Wolfman Rating 7.5 – IMDB Rating 7.5
Much fun was had with the family watching this and eating dinner. So much crazy set piece action that at times you except to have Jackie Chan explode on to the screen. A Marvel hero I hadn’t heard of before but with that great title it had to be seen. The son (Simu Liu) of two powerful magical fighting legacies struggles to find himself after the death of his Mum and the rage of his father. Living in San Francisco he lives a normal life until his past comes looking for him. Michelle Yeoh still always looks gorgeous and Ben Kingsley and Awkwafina add comic relief. It’s has an old school kung-fu feeling and is all round great entertainment.

No Retreat, No Surrender (1985) – Wolfman Rating 6.5 – IMDB Rating 5.7
This was fun and I got to review this Kung Fu Fun Film right here.

Free Guy (2021) – Wolfman Rating 7.5 – IMDB Rating 7.2
Perfect family film entertainment for a Christmas day watch. This was really good fun. Even if you don’t get all the gaming references I’m sure they will still hit. It’s stupid and filled with many big laughs and giggles. Guy (Ryan Reynolds) is a NPC (non-player character). One of many computer characters who’s role fills in background to make a story as the real game players fly around smashing and killing everything on sight. NPC’s are destined to have only a few routine repeated words and can be sometimes be seen glitching out in no man’s land in alleys and street corners for no reason. One day Guy kind of goes off script and starts to fall in love with a mysterious action girl called Millie (Jodie Comer). Back in the “real world” game programmer Keys (Joe Keery) tries to figure what’s going on under the nose of his tyrant boss Antwan (Taika Waititi). Get on it if you have Disney+.

Jimmy Carr: His Dark Material (2021) – Wolfman Rating 8 – IMDB Rating 7
Don’t watch if you don’t like dark comedy. You will be offended. I’m not a big Jimmy Carr TBH. He can be a bit annoying but it went up on Netflix and dived in with a few beers and laughed at all the stupid silliness. I felt like you could tell he’d been spending more time on the American stand-up scene with this new hour?

Central Intelligence (2016) – Wolfman Rating 5.5 – IMDB Rating 6.3
Goodness this was pretty bad! Not sure why as it has everything for a good time but something just didn’t click! Over long and needed to dial things back a bit. Ok I had a few laughs and like both Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart so maybe I wasn’t in the mood. Thing was I kinda of was and just wanted a silly action film. Yep got that but it could of been so much more.

Passport to Pimlico (1949) – Wolfman Rating 7 – IMDB Rating 7.2
Residents of a part of London declare independence when they discover an old treaty. This leads to the need for a “Passport to Pimlico” and of course a right British farce to ensue. It’s very silly and a Ealing Studio’s production ticked off my list. Lots of the usual faces from that era with Stanley Holloway and the always brilliant Margaret Rutherford bringing lots of the giggles.

——————————————————————————————————————–

Thanks for popping on by my humble little movie site. It really is much appreciated. Rather than do my usual, of late, apologies for lack of posts and not having the time to read and comment as much I would so love to on your posts. Instead, I’m just say I’m gonna try harder this year and hopefully I will rectify this. Here’s wishing you a wonderful 2022 and hope to catch up soon.

A few reviews coming soon could be, a surreal British war movie, Bond doing robberies, The Duke making a big appearance, more film noir and of course the blog main tagline, more cult movies… Hope you enjoy.

Any goodies in there you have seen and liked? Thoughts, recommends etc always welcome if you fancy too.

Keep watching the screens. Thanks for having a look to see what’s been watched. All the best……… The howling one, Mikey

What’s Been Watched This Month – November 2021

Here’s what square eyed Mikey Wolfman been watching throughout November 2021.

Hey it’s almost Christmas and of course Die Hard is a festive film? Right? Haha the old ancient debate to get people fired up with seasonal joy. No, that’s not my movie cinema room, but man-o-man I so wish it was! So on to the film section below. You’ll see it took a beating this month as I stuck with some series to get my subscription fees paid for. As usual there were actually more films watched, one big one in fact that I hadn’t seen before and it might cause an upset!!!. I’m half way through a review for it so hopefully that will be next and you can decide my fate!! Anyhow Christmas is around the corner and I’m so excited to be having some family time and movie time. Bring it on and an early Christmas cheer to you.

The TV

Arcane… Perfection! Well I thought so. This one sneaked in from Netflix. Based on an online battle arena game called League of Legends. Yep me neither. Like with most game to film they rarely work. Going down the series avenue has given them the time to flesh out a story. I’ve know idea if it’s related to the game in anyway but I will say they smashed it out the park for sure. The animation is beautiful and very creative, the story arc’s thoughtfully achieved, characters you care for, whether good or bad. Plus the perfect editing to enhanced some truly emotion moments. The first 3 episodes are a story arc in themselves. So if you didn’t like it at that point, then move along. You would miss a deep poetic final episode though. Highly recommended if that’s your thing or maybe not…

Foundation… I grabbed a AppleTV subscription for a couple of months to watch this as I’m a massive science fiction head. Was very excited for this. The first episode was pretty epic. Then, unfortunately it got lost in it’s own psychobabble. I stayed with it and did enjoy many aspects of it. Another thing that let it down was the acting, or maybe the dialogue could be blamed. The ships and general space effects were first rate but then, occasionally out the blue, it looked cheap. I did love the idea of Empire and three generation of clones, it’s a great concept. Lee Pace was in ham overload at times but I was ok with it. The main problem was it never really went anywhere and you just didn’t care when it got to the end. I’ve never read Isaac Asimov’s book series so I can’t say anything on that. I do hope, if they do make a second series, that they introduce more from the robots and jazz things up. But putting slightly moany Mikey to the side, I love sci-fi and was just happy watching space stuff on the screen. All roads lead to The Expanse final season next week, I can’t wait, now that’s a sci-fi epic saga!!

Ted Lasso… Getting my sub dues in working my way through the American football coach, Jason Sudeikis, out of his depth, managing a British football Premiership team in London. It’s a comedy with a pure heart of gold. Always takes a nice left turn. The first series was brilliant. The second follows very closely but just doesn’t keep hitting. It’s very enjoyable and filled with that feel good factor and keeps to the trusted formula, well there’s one curve-ball episode! It’s a real oddity. You’ll know it when it comes. It’s like when Guy Ritchie, after his winning formula of films decided to try something different, Revolver (2005). OK that could of been pure creative genius, it certainly blew a few peoples minds. Well that episode is like that, they try a real random one shot episode that is either genius, a Lynchian effort or just a pile of bollocks. You’ll be pleased to know they go straight back into normal mode after the surreal detour.

The Films

10 films this month and a total of 153 this year
1088 since the start of the blog in January 2017.

Four Hours at the Capitol (2021) – Wolfman Rating 8.5 – IMDB Rating 6.8
Good God that was truly insane. Pure horror show!!!! The press photos etc at the time didn’t show the World War Z zombie style attacks the poor cops had to endure. Shocking footage and extremely tense documentary using footage from the attackers themselves! It’s a miracle there weren’t more deaths! This doc was just missing one thing?… John Carpenter’s Assault on Precinct 13 soundtrack!

Cast a Dark Shadow (1955) – Wolfman Rating 8.5 – IMDB Rating 7
Ooo I do love a good Dirk Bogarde film. This British Film Noir has him in his, quite often, usual dastardly fashion. You can read my review of Cast a Dark Shadow here and see what he’s up to this time?

Blithe Spirit (1945) – Wolfman Rating 8.5 – IMDB Rating 7.1
Rex Harrison and his second wife Constance Cummings are haunted by the ghost of his first wife Kay Hammond. It’s a wonderfully fun and very entertaining film version of a Noel Coward play directed by David Lean. And without doubt, the true star of the film is Margaret Rutherford playing a truly potty local mystic medium to the perfection. Just watching every minute she is on screen is a pure delight. Very recommended.

Finch (2021) – Wolfman Rating 7 – IMDB Rating 7.1
You get two Will Smith films, I, Robot and I Am Legend. Mix in Denzel doing The Book of Eli and roll those three into one Tom Hanks movie doing Castaway in an apocalypse with a robot Borat and a dog. AppleTv new science fiction movie is actually ok if not instantly forgettable with it’s dash of middle of the road. Still a good sit back and watch Tom gurning and interacting with a robot instead of his old friend Wilson.

The Forgotten Battle (2020) – Wolfman Rating 7 – IMDB Rating 7.1
This is an ambitious Dutch production of The Battle of the Scheldt. A lesser know battle but still a very important piece of the war effort as the Allied advancement tries to liberate the Scheldt estuary from German occupation. In doing so it would free up the supply line from the Belgium shipping lane of Antwerp. The Forgotten Battle loosely plays on the theme of Dunkirk with using three main character story arcs to follow through the film. It’s a very good film though something lacked giving it an emotional wallop. Tom Felton aka Draco Malfoy does a great David Niven impression btw.

My Beautiful Laundrette (1985) – Wolfman Rating 7.5 – IMDB Rating 6.8
A British comedy drama with gay love between the laundry machines and soap suds with Daniel Day-Lewis in an early role. What could be going on you may ask? You could read my review of My Beautiful Laundrette here and probably not learn much but hey that’s how it works at the house of Wolfman’s Cult Film!

The Big Caper (1957) – Wolfman Rating 7 – IMDB Rating 6.4
We all love a good bank heist film don’t we? One thing for sure is you gotta have a good gang. You can meet them on my The Big Caper review here

Lucy, the Human Chimp (2021) – Wolfman Rating 7.5 – IMDB Rating 7.3
This really should be called Janis Carter, the Human Chimp. She really is a remarkable woman. After two psychologist’s, stupidly raise a baby chimpanzee called Lucy as an experiment to see what will happen if she’s only taught life being a human daughter. When young student Janis replies to a job advert and is introduced into the family group it will change her life path… forever.

Cube (1997) – Wolfman Rating 8 – IMDB Rating 7.2
Low budget but highly imaginative Canadian science fiction horror. Six complete strangers with widely varying personalities are involuntarily placed in an endless maze containing deadly traps. I saw this when it was first released and loved it. Been meaning to revisit it for years. I managed to get my son sat down to join me in the boxed madness. A sequel was released called Cube 2 Hypercube (2002) which I recall liking however I never knew there was a prequel called Cube Zero (2004). Both sequels don’t get great reviews but the original is ace and worth watching if you get the chance. In a strange turn of events, I just noticed that there’s a recent Japanese remake just released this month! Cube (2021)

Another Man’s Poison (1951) – Wolfman Rating 7 – IMDB Rating 7
A mystery writer, Bette Davis, becomes involved in a tangled web of murderous deception not unlike the plots of her novels. Gary Merrill brings some mystery to the story and Emlyn Williams playing a doctor who can’t help but stick his nosey neighbour sniffer in the mix. I had high hopes for this one. It is good and has some fine moments but it just doesn’t quite hit. Always good to see Bette Davis but her acting is at times over the top.

——————————————————————————————————————–

Thanks for popping on by my humble little movie site. Please stay safe.

Any goodies in there you have seen and liked? Thoughts, recommends etc always welcome if you fancy too.

Keep watching the screens. Thanks for having a look to see what’s been watched. All the best……… The howling one, Mikey