The Bank Job (2008)

Director: Roger Donaldson

Writer: Dick Clement, Ian La Frenais (Screenplay)

Starring: Jason Statham, Saffron Burrows, Stephen Campbell Moore, Daniel Mays, James Faulkner, Alki David, Michael Jibosn

 

Plot: Martine offers Terry a lead on a foolproof bank hit on London’s Baker Street. She targets a roomful of safe deposit boxes worth millions in cash and jewelry. But Terry and his crew don’t realize the boxes also contain a treasure trove of dirty secrets – secrets that will thrust them into a deadly web of corruption and illicit scandal.


Tagline – Based on a true story

Runtime: 1 Hour 51 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Overly Busy Heist Film

 

Story: The Bank Job starts when former lover Martine Love (Burrows) turns to Terry Leather (Statham) to do a bank job which can get him out of his debts and start a fresh life, Terry puts together a team including Kevin (Moore), Dave (Mays), Guy (Faulkner), Bambas (David) and Eddie (Jibson) for a Foolproof plan.

The job does seem easy, but Terry doesn’t know that Martine is working for the government who are trying to get condemning evidence back and that Terry is just a pawn in this game, can they get the job done without being caught?

 

Thoughts on The Bank Job

 

Characters – Terry Leather is a car salesman in London, he has amounted debts which will see his business go under if the loan sharks don’t get to him first. He has worked on small crimes before, but a former lover offers him a job he can’t turn down, one that can get him out of his problems once and for all. Martine is the former lover and model who has been assigned to steal the photos from the safety deposit box in exchange for charges being dropped, she picks Terry and his team to get the job done, not giving away her own side of the deal.  Kevin and Dave are two members of the team doing the robbery, the two closest to Terry which gives us the friendship being put on the line between the men.

PerformancesJason Statham as a wise talking Londoner this sounds like something he can do well, he looks the part, you could see him in the underworld without needing to use his muscles either. Saffron Burrows can make herself the model figure that uses her looks to get a job done. When we look at the supporting cast, they all handle their roles well through the film.

StoryThe story follows a group of Londoners that get offered a chance to commit a bank robbery to get out of the area only to find themselves in the middle of a much bigger operation to retrieve photos which can be used to bring down important political figures. This is a heist story which does have an extra edge because it isn’t just about the job, it is about the bigger picture which puts the rich and famous live into chaos. While we do have a lot going on, which is part of the idea because the chaos is meant to be getting out of control once the robbery is complete, though it does feel like we see too much to keep up on at times.

Crime/RomanceThe crime is set-up to work perfectly well and goes well, it is the aftermath which shows us just how chaotic the crime world can become for the people who commit the robbery or have been robbed.

SettingsThe film is set in London which shows us just how corrupt certain parts of the city can be at times and if you are the right person, you can get around like nothing is happening.


Scene of the Movie –
The robbery.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Too much going on post-robbery.

Final ThoughtsThis is a very busy heist movie, it does work with just how much is going on which is good, though it isn’t as relaxing as a lot of heist film can be.

 

Overall: Heist film that keeps everything going on.

Rating

 

 

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Fisherman’s Friends (2019)

Director: Chris Foggin

Writer: Piers Ashworth, Meg Leonard, Nick Moorcroft (Screenplay)

Starring: Tuppence Middleton, James Purefoy, Daniel Mays, David Hayman, Christian Brassington, Sarah Winter, Dave Johns, Noel Clarke

 

Plot: Ten fisherman from Cornwall are signed by Universal Records and achieve a top ten hit with their debut album of Sea Shanties.


Tagline – The U.K’s number 1 Buoy Band

Runtime: 1 Hour 52 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Feel Good Start to the Summer

 

Story: Fisherman’s Friends starts when a stag-do heads to Cornwell, Danny (Mays) joined by his boss Troy (Clarke) head down to Port Isaac where they struggle to understand the traditional ways of the small fishing village. In the village the guys here the local’s fishermen singing the shanty songs.

Danny is forced to try and sign the band with lead member Jim (Purefoy) being the one that gives the final say so. Danny didn’t know that Troy was joking, once he learns this, he wants to prove him wrong and make the band an overnight sensation.

 

Thoughts on Fisherman’s Friend

 

Characters – Danny is a fast-talking record producer, he has success in this field and isn’t interested in any sort of responsibility in life. On a stag-do he gets pushed into signing a local band, this shows his skills in the deal. When he learns that it was a joke, he continues to try and sign the band, to make them a hit, while learning about a more traditional lifestyle. Jim is considered the leader of the band, in the decision-making process, if he says no, nothing happens. He is considered stubborn in his ways, which sees him believe in the traditions and friendship. Alwyn is the daughter of Jim’s, she runs the local bed-n-breakfast, where Danny ends up staying, where she gets involved in a relationship with after he shows a bond with her own daughter.

PerformancesDaniel Mays in the leading role is great, he has often been the supporting actor, but he shows he could lead here. James Purefoy brings his best to a role based on the real leader of the band, he makes him feel like a man you should never mess with. Tuppence Middleton might be in the unneeded romantic angle, but she does everything right to make us believe she knows the traditions of her town. The rest of the cast do all work very well to make us feel like we are going to be part of a community with the band.

StoryThe story follows a group of fishermen who become an overnight sensation when a music producer on a stag-do spots them and is forced into signing them for their label. The story is based on the real story of the bands rise to success, which in the modern era of music was a surprise, but it also plays into how people tend to follow different sounds. Everything about the band is excellent to watch, it shows that it is almost a different life down in their village. The weakness in the story comes from the romantic angle which does feel mostly just tacked on for added impact in Danny’s decision making process. It might work in places, but it does take away from the band’s story. overlooking that issue, we do have a truly fun, feel-good movie about success here.

Comedy/MusicalThe comedy in the film comes from just how the locals act towards outsiders, they have wonderful chemistry between them too. The music shows how this new sound could make an impact in the world.

SettingsThe settings show us a couple of main ones, first is the village, which shows the community feel between the band, when we are in the richer side of the world, we see the disconnect between the people.


Scene of the Movie –
London pub.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Most of the romance story.

Final ThoughtsThis is a feel-good movie that will leave you with a smile and hope that anybody’s dream could become a reality.

 

Overall: British Feel-good

Rating

 

 

Two for Joy (2018)

Director: Tom Beard

Writer: Tom Beard (Screenplay)

Starring: Samantha Morton, Billie Piper, Bella Ramsey, Emilia Jones, Daniel Mays, Ibinabo Jack, David Elliot, Badger Skelton

 

Plot: A troubled family’s problems come to a head during a stay in a seaside town.

 

Runtime: 1 Hour 30 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Truly Fantastic

 

Story: Two for Joy starts as a small family, mother Aisha (Morton) and children Violet (Jones) and Troy (Skelton) are living the poor life with their own problems, with Aisha struggling with depression, Troy falling in with the wrong crowd and Vi just trying to hold things together.

The three go on a low budget family holiday by the seaside to get away from the troubles back home, here they meet Lillah (Piper) and Miranda (Ramsey) another family with their own problems too and caretaker Lias (Mays) tries to put a positive spin on the caravan site.

 

Thoughts on Two For Joy

 

Characters – Aisha is the mother is Vi and Troy, she is stuck in deep depression after the death of her husband, their father, she struggles with everyday tasks leading to leave Vi in charge of the household chores. She does take the children to the caravan to escape for a while, which does try to help her have communication with other adults. Vi short for Violet is the eldest daughter of Aisha, she is the one trying to hold the family together, she will do everything she can while trying to escape the life with her studies too, she desperately needs a friend. Troy is the youngster child of the family, he likes to fish, only he has started to hang around a troublesome older boy that has put gotten him in trouble. Lillah is a fellow single mother that has used the caravan home to escape the traumas of back home, she doesn’t have much control over her daughter, while her brother tries to help her escape the abusive father. Miranda is Lillah’s daughter, she takes a shine to Troy and sees him as somebody she can have adventures with, she does come off like a bratty figure, but it is clear she is dealing with the depression of not having her father around and what he did to her. Lias runs the caravan camp, he only has two visitors and tries his best to make sure they are all having a good time there.

PerformancesSamantha Morton gives us a brilliant performance as the mother who has nearly given up hope on her life, we believe the struggles she is facing too. Billie Piper and Daniel Mays complete the adult cast as they both shine too. It is Emilia Jones which give the standout of a stunning performance piece here, as she must hide the pain, she is feeling to remain strong even with nobody around her. Bella Ramsey and Badger Skelton complete the cast and shine on an equal level to the rest of the cast.

StoryThe story follows the lives of two broken families that are spending time at a seaside caravan site, they are the only ones here, they must use the time to try and help each other accept what has happened and move on with their lives only for one moment to become the catalyst for the biggest change. If you did see the movie ‘The Florida Project’ you will understand what you will be experience, with the children struggle to find things to do, while the parents have almost given up on their own endeavours. The story is bleak and full of darkness when it comes to everything that we go through, we touch on real matters that don’t always get talked about, especially when the people are going through the problems, this will test your emotional levels through the film.

SettingsThe film has a couple of settings, first the housing area which shows how close the family is living close to poverty and just waiting to fall into troubles, before we move to seaside resort that shows us just where the poor families will spend holidays.


Scene of the Movie –
The boat trip.

That Moment That Annoyed Me There are certain parts of the Lillah relationship we could have seen more from.

Final ThoughtsThis is one of the best dramas you will see this year, it will play on the emotions of the audience and leave you emotionally exhausted by the end of the film.

 

Overall: Essential viewing.

Rating

 

 

Available to pre-order on I-Tunes here

Screening on the Green, Isington Wednesday 20th February, click here for tickets

The Limehouse Golem (2017)

Director: Juan Carlos Medina

Writer: Jane Goldman (Screenplay) Peter Ackroyd (Novel)

Starring: Olivia Cooke, Bill Nighy, Eddie Marsan, Douglas Booth, Maria Valverde, Sam Reid, Daniel Mays

 

Plot: A series of murders has shaken the community to the point where people believe that only a legendary creature from dark times – the mythical so-called Golem – must be responsible.


Tagline –  Before the Ripper, fear had another name.

Runtime: 1 Hour 49 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Slow Horror Thriller

 

Story: The Limehouse Golem starts when John Cree (Reid) is found dead in his bed chambers by his wife Lizzie (Cooke), she is accused of murdering him but when detective John Kildare (Nighy) is investigating the mysterious murder known as the Limehouse Golem the clues point to the potential killer being John Cree.

Kildare attends the trial of Lizzie where she gives the story of how she meant John Cree which let her follow her dreams of working with performer Dan Leno (Booth) who takes her under his wing. As the story unfolds we learn about the relationship Lizzie started with John all while Kildare searches for the real Limehouse Golem.

 

Thoughts on The Limehouse Golem

 

Characters – Lizzie Cree is accused of killing her husband during the attacks of The Limehouse Golem, while awaiting trial and during it she tells the tale of the poor girl that grew up to become part of the entertaining field in 1800’s England and her relationship with one of the suspects. John Kildare is the newly appointed detective to the Limehouse Golem case which brings him to look at a large selection of suspects that all seem to have a connection to Lizzie, including her late husband. Dan Leno is the lead performer at the theatre, he brings Lizzie in to the show and mentors her, he is also a suspect in the murder cases going in Limehouse. The suspects are all interesting throughout the film as we see the darker side of the people of Limehouse.

PerformancesBill Nighy is good as the detective keeping calm through the case, Douglas Booth is also good as the performer that gets to shown extra eccentricity through the film. Olivia Cooke is an actress I believe has a bright future and for the most part she is good here but then in moment she aims to try a cockney accent which doesn’t hit.

StoryThe story is told in two parts but together, the main part is the trial against Lizzie while the other part looks at what could have led to the decision in the trial for Lizzie as people search for the Limehouse Golem. This is fine as a story but when you go into a horror thriller film we are left feeling empty as this turns into a crime thriller, the murders seem to be off camera and it turns into a who was the killer.

Horror/ThrillerThe horror in this film disappoints greatly because we seem to skip over most of the moments revolving around the killer’s actions, the thrilling side of the film works in places as we are left with a race against time to see if Lizzie is guilty of not.

SettingsThe film is set in the 1800 hundreds London which is famous for the killings of Jack the Ripper which this film feels like it could easily be in the same time as that.

Special EffectsThe effects are used rarely and not ruining any moment of the film as we only have them where needed.


Scene of the Movie –
Final act.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Moments of the accent are annoying.

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

Final ThoughtsThis is a film that builds up slowly to its final act, using the words to make sure we are left to follow clues to who the killer is and is saved by the final act from being just an average film.

 

Overall: Saved by the final act.

Rating

 

 

John Leguizamo Weekend – The Infiltrator (2016)

infiDirector: Brad Furman

Writer: Ellen Sue Brown (Screenplay) Robert Mazur (Book)

Starring: Bryan Cranston, John Leguizamo, Diane Kruger, Daniel Mays, Amy Ryan, Jason Isaacs, Michael Pare,

 

Plot: A U.S. Customs official uncovers a money laundering scheme involving Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Good Crime Drama

 

Story: The Infiltrator starts as we meet Robert Mazur (Cranston) who has been working as an undercover US Custom officer who has just taken down a drug ring which for the time offers him a chance to walk away from field work. When one of Robert’s co-workers Emir Abreu (Leguizamo) comes to him with information of a Colombian drug lord Robert must decide whether to follow the lead.

Robert takes the job where he must go undercover as a banker for the Colombian drug lord where he must work with Abreu who he sees as a loose cannon to take down Pablo Escobar. The further Robert goes undercover the deeper he finds himself wondering just how far he will get pushed by the drug lords.

The Infiltrator gives us what seems to be just another look at a brave man who goes undercover to bring down a crime lord. We do have heavyweight performance from Cranston yet again that could easily get Oscar attention. I also think we get a great supporting performance from Leguizamo. The film gives us plenty of focus on the effects of going undercover on the personal life as well as the professional side of everything but it does sadly feel like just another story we have seen similar before.

 

Overall: Great performances to a crime story it feels we have seen before.

Rating70