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i found that i've got some time spare and a backlog of movies i needed to watch. All of them disney based.

The first one recently was the CG movie Turning Red, about a girl who becomes cursed with becoming a red panda at a certain age, triggered by strong emotions. i found it pretty good and i was suitably entertained.

The other movie i watched was Dr strange in the multiverse of madness. Again, i also enjoyed this one as well, it was well made and was jolly entertaining. I'm sure film pros\marvel fans etc would rebuff it and explain why it wasn't very good, but as someone who enjoys most of the marvel movies (if it entertains me and doesn't rub me the wrong way) i think its a win in my books.
Your name (2016)

Critically acclaimed anime. The story revolves around tokyo boy Taki Tachibana and country girl Mitsuha Miyamizu who have the ability to swap bodies at random. Initially it leads to all sorts of hijinks as they try to adjust and experience their swapped genders and opportunities. For Mitsuha its an opportunity to escape from the isolated/boring country life (a place with no cafe and the local 7/11 closes early) and enjoy toyko, for Taki, well, fondling boobs i guess.

i'm not going to go into full details as to the story and events, as its too spoiler heavy. But its a cracking movie, at first its your typical anime humour, but over time it becomes a touching tale of romance, adventure and adversity as taki tries to piece together who Mitsuha is, where is she from and meet her in person. Again, not going to spoil it, but its not as simple as just googling it when all you have are vague memories when each other wake up in their own bodies they pretty much forget everything, including names and feels like its a dream. The only way they knew it wasn't a dream was the fallout from each others meddling. You're never entirely sure whether they will have their happy ending as they frequently miss each other, have a connection with each other but never sure WHY or if the other would reciprocate after 5 years.

overall, the critical acclaim was well deserved. Good story, top animation and soundtrack. i watched the subtitle version.
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Toy Story 4 (2019)

The only blockbuster i wanted to watch on TV this christmas, Toy story 4 is again returns to the group of toys who once belonged to Andy and now to their new younger owner bonnie. Woody still leads the toys, but as bonnie loses interest with him, he starts to lose his place in the world and is desperately grasping for some relevance in his life and in his new owner bonnie. On an off chance he breaks with convention and joins bonnie to pre-school where he helps bonnie fit in and make school induction less hell.

The main plot hook is the toy bonnie makes a new toy from trash in preschool named Forky. Woody takes it upon himself (like a loving parent) to teach and guide forky to his new life and importance to bonnie. Things quickly escalate however when our second plot hook is introduced; Woody's chance encounter with Bo peep (in past life, she was woody's counter part but in a girls toy collection) living as a lost toy and rather then feeling lost, is in fact thriving without an owner which is completely alien to woody as he and all toys believe they need to have an owner to have meaning or an existence in their lives.

Throughout the adventure woody has to save forky for bonnie and deal with conflicting emotional and existential interests between living free with someone he loved and lost or continue his commitments leading his colleagues and to his new toy owner bonnie.

A pretty good movie again by pixar. It had some great moments and characters throughout. A fitting send off in what should have been the last movie in the series. i would be pretty skeptical of Toy story 5 when its released as TS4 wraps everything up so beautifully like a happy ever after with a passing of the torch etc. Wouldn't stop me from trying to watch TS5 though.
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So the christmas movie watching continues:

Home Alone (1990)

A classic, i watched on christmas day because there was nothing else on. A troublesome 8 year old kid is accidentally left home alone for the christmas holidays and has to defend his home from 2 burglars on the prowl. A classic movie, its good and it stands up event after 33 years.

Spartacus (1960)

i had some time last night and another classic movie came up. I've seen bits and pieces of it over the years (even last year!) but never watched through its entirety. So i decided to do so this time. As the title suggests, its the biopic of the slave hero Spartacus and his slave uprising against the romans. Not sure what to make of this one, its a product of its time so i can't be too harsh, i do love the scale of things like the battles as you had to remember theres no CGI, everyone that was there is an extra.

Would i recommend a watch? meh not sure tbh. i didn't hate it, but i wouldn't expect people to go out of their way to watch it.
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Oh man, I saw that ~30 years ago [after they restored all the cut scenes] and was enthralled—what a cast and what a story, and what a Stanley Kubrick! I'd studied Roman history as part of Latin class at school, and was very interested in it in general, so the 3+ hours of the movie just flew by.

Would I watch it now? No, as you say it's a product for its time. The TV show from a decade ago is highly rated, but I haven't seen it.
Oh man, I saw that ~30 years ago [after they restored all the cut scenes] and was enthralled—what a cast and what a story, and what a Stanley Kubrick! I'd studied Roman history as part of Latin class at school, and was very interested in it in general, so the 3+ hours of the movie just flew by.

Would I watch it now? No, as you say it's a product for its time. The TV show from a decade ago is highly rated, but I haven't seen it.

i watched the 2015 HD remake of the 1991 remaster of the movie. I started watching from 4:10pm and didn't finish until 6:45pm and then i caught the last 30 minutes of the remake of the lion king. Another childhood classic movie strangled by disney.

I also drank 5 cups of tea over the course of watching Spartacus. i also ate a chicken pie and 2 pieces of chocolate. Why i feel i needed to tell everyone that info i don't know.
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A surprise opportunity to use the living room tv yesterday and just as expected, nothing riveting to watch and made the best of what was on. Which was a movie:

Father of the bride (1991)

Family drama/comedy starring steve martin as George Banks, the patriarch of the banks family. The story revolves around George's daughter (annie) finally getting married and the organizing of the wedding. The other plot hook revolves around George's insecurities of the sudden announcement by his daughter, what would happen to the family dynamic for a man who openly admits to hating change?

its a fairly predictable movie, if steve martin wasn't in it it wouldn't be as passable/average. its something i would probably watch/listen/have running in the background as i did something else. Not exactly essential viewing tbh and you wouldn't be missing much if you didn't catch it on freeview tv.
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I revisited Harry Potter 1-8, 2001-2011 last week:

Harry Potter - Daniel Radcliffe
Ron Weasley - Rupert Grint
Richard Harris/Michael Gambon - Albus Dumbledor
Robbie Coltrane - Hagrid
Ralph Fiennes (for the most part) - Voldemort
John Hurt - Mr. Ollivander
Emma Watson - Hermione Granger
Alan Rickman - Professor Snape
and many more!

Out of all the movies, my favorite is Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (2009). I loved the deep dive into Voldemort's past and how we found out more about the book that Potter started to get obsessed with. The series took a more serious turn in this one and the characters grew more on me. My second favorite is Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005). I found the competition in this one to be excellent with a lot of action, spells, and decent CGI. The worst one is by far Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1. It had tons of boring teen drama, walking around, teleporting around, some more walking and camping, more teen drama. I was happy when this part was over. Thankfully part 2 was better!


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I watched the new(ish) Babylon 5 animated movie, The Road Home.

Blah. Just not good at all. There's one thing the movie clears up about the show, but mostly it's just "hey look, remember these characters?" Except you often won't, because the animated version doesn't really look like the original. Having to get new voice actors for people that have passed away hurt, but even some of the characters that are still around weren't recognizable to me.

Mostly, though, the story just doesn't work. They've done the 'unstuck in time' thing before and they've done it VERY well, but this? You don't really get any revelations about what has happened or what's going to happen. The different times don't interact, and you never return to any of them, so they really could just be a series of short stories.
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Oppenheimer 2023, 3h
Cillian Murphy
Robert Downey Jr
Emily Blunt
Matt Damon
Florence Pugh
Kenneth Branagh
This has lots of excellence, but would work much better as a mini series—we watched it in 3 x 1-hour chunks, which it doesn't neatly break down into. Reason for lack of neatness is the frequent time jumps between 20s, 30s, 40s, and 50s—not made easy to follow in themselves, and also way over-populated with a plethora of very important characters we barely get to know. But the movie is too dense and confusing for one straight sitting, especially if you're hoping to relax with it.

Many seem to regard this as the story of the atomic bomb, but it isn't even close to that—maybe 90% of the A-bomb's development is omitted or barely mentioned in passing. This is a biography of a brilliant scientist, who lived in a seminal period for science, in the midst of a large number of other brilliant scientists, most of whom are no more than name dropped.

Cillian Murphy is brilliant, and it's great to see RDJ back in a decent role, which he nails. Rest of the cast are fine, locations look great, and it's an interesting story.

But it's not great—a case of biting off more than can be chewed in one meal. Nolan's directorial style can be brilliant elsewhere—Inception, Memento, Insomnia—but is not suited to a project which could be so much more. A mini series covering 1920 to 1950 could be truly epic.

But watch it, especially if you're prepared to work at it and rewind when necessary. Murphy and RDJ make it worthwhile on their own.

Jul 27, 2023
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I've been binging baseball movies this month.

Fever Pitch, 2005. Jimmy Fallon loves the Red Sox. Drew Barrymore, his girlfriend, thinks he loves him too much. Fun for a Red Sox fan; I prefer the British original as a movie.

42, 2013. The story of Jackie Robinson, the first black man to play for the MLB.

Benched, 2011. Dr Cox from Scrubs is a minor league coach known for winning, and then he's saddled with a new parent as his assistant. Then his son, the pilot, the star of the team decides to quit to perform in a musical. A story of father and son relationships, and of friendship forged in mutual suffering.

Hardball, 2001. Keanu Reeves is in debt and has to coach some inner-city kids. One of them gets shot. It was a fun movie until that point.

Major League, 1989. Only Charlie "Wild Thing" Sheen can stop the Indians from leaving Ohio for Miami.

The Natural, 1984. Robert Redford is a ballplayer capable of striking out Babe Ruth, but his career is interupted for fifteen years.

Take Me out to the Ballgame, 1949. A baseball musical involving Frank Sinatra, Gene Kelley, and a love triangle.

Bad News Bears, 2005
Bad News Bears, 1976

Damn Yankees, 1958. A man sells his soul to the devil to beat the Yankees.

It Happened in Flatbush, 1942. A disgraced former ballplayer comes back to the game to coach his beloved Dodgers.

Mickey, 2004. A lawyer with tax problems assumes new identities for himself and his son and ditches town. Unfortunately, the son's involvement with Little League ball takes his team to the world series, and exposes them to the IRS.
All quiet on the western front (2022)

A remake of a classic movie which in turn was a classic story. The story set in WW1 where a group of young friends are swept in the fervor and patriotism of going to war for germany. It quickly becomes apparent to the boys that war is hell and they are expected to live through it all, the highs, the lows, the tedium and excitement as well as the love and loss of comrades.

A pretty brutal film. The battles are harsh and you can experience the brutality and desperation of it all. Especially the fuilitiy and meat grinder nature of the battle. Uniforms are stripped from the dead, cleaned, mended and handed to the next naive bastard. In some ways we also get to see the the madness and stupidity of those who couldn't swallow their pride that the war is over.

Surprisingly it does paint a more sympathetic picture of the german soldiers and in many ways highlights the shared humanity on both sides. The ordinary citizens/volunteers conscripted in ww1 where swept up in the in madness and weren't bad people.

Would i recommend a watch? absolutely.
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Surprisingly it does paint a more sympathetic picture of the german soldiers

Maybe it follows the book, so it probably wouldn't be surprising since Erich Maria Remarque was a German soldier.
Also, Christmas truce

All quiet on the western front

I read the book ~50 years ago, but fairly sure I didn't finish it—pretty tough going, like the Russians.
Maybe it follows the book, so it probably wouldn't be surprising since Erich Maria Remarque was a German soldier.
Also, Christmas truce

yeah maybe it wasn't that surprising. Looking into the wiki it was banned for its anti war stance.

i did watch parts of the (1979?) movie (during history lesson) and there are some significantly different parts compared to the 2022 movie. Not read the book so no idea which one was more faithful to the original though.
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Easter weekend and the tv had a premiere of GhostBusters: Afterlife (2021) a continuation of the ghostbuster series. Taking place decades since the last movie, a small struggling family move to a farm they inherited from a recent passing of a estranged relative. As the family climatize to their new home, the youngest member Phoebe, discovers that their strange relative who was none other then Egon Spengler; a former member of the ghost busters.

Things from there become increasingly unstable and its up to the children to take up the ghostbusters mantel to face off against a returning evil and finish the work Egon started.

it was an ok movie. its meh, a lot of build up for a meh final showdown. It does have some homage to the classic movies ( the original living cast making a return), but again, not exactly funny or terrible, doesn't invoke much nostalgia. So yeah, the metacritic score more or less on the mark.

Would i recommend a watch? nope.

I really should go back and watch top gun: maverick, from the first hour its a lot more entertaining and better successor movie.
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Top Gun: Maverick (2022)

i promised i would finish watch it and i did. After 36 years, Maverick is a test pilot whereas top pilots with similar talents would have taken top roles in the air force. After another reckless action, the brass relocate him once more to under take one final task before retiring him. The task is to train a handful of the best pilots to be ready perform a near impossible mission.

The difficulty of the task, the lack of experience and a deadline puts pressure on Maverick to succeed, but the real stress is dealing with his past and unfinished business in the form of Maverick's CoPilot (Goose) Son Lt. Bradley 'Rooster' Bradshaw. Rooster hasn't really forgiven Maverick for his fathers death and to add insult to injury, Maverick also pulled his application to be a pilot and held him back for 4 years without explaining to rooster why.

A good movie imo. A good example of how to get add a movie to the franchise after a long period of hibernation. I think the reason Top gun succeeds (besides the good performances, action and story) is that i think it doesn't disconnect too much from the past movies and not joined so much that its fan service etc. Unlike ghostbusters:afterlife , the original cast just get wheeled out in the last 30 minutes for a half arsed performance with little backstory or fanfare etc.

Would i recommend a watch? yes, yes i would.
I have it on BR. I bought the Top Gun / Maverick pack which included more extra content on the original movie.
I've watched Maverick at least 5 times since buying it. Brilliant sequel IMHO.

As someone who doesn't have much opinion or remember much from the original top gun, TG: Maverick was a damn fine movie, had some interesting twists and turns, ramping up the tension at the end. i should go back and watch top gun just to round out the experience.
Apr 14, 2024
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This past week I watched a ton of Netflix on the weekend because I was sick, and here are my little reviews:

The Dig with Carey Mulligan, Ralph Fiennes and Lily James
Really nice movie about a particular archeology discovery in the UK, based on real events, it's a calm and serious movie but with a lot of heart.

Goodbye Christopher Robin with Margot Robbie and Domhnall Gleeson
Honestly thought this was other movie I have watched before, and oh I was pleasantly surprised! This one I watched it on TV ( cable) I was just surfing the channels and there it was. It is actually a really nice movie about the real life story of the kid behind the Winnie the Pooh's author inspiration. Sad story if you have issues with your family, this may be a hit in your heart... but really nice movie and leaves you with a good feeling (or at least I think so, my husband wasn't very happy since he does have family issues).

Eat, Pray, Love with Julia Roberts
Oldie but is one of those movies that are easy watching and at the end of the day you end up with a good feeling about life and all that, so I do recommend it whenever you are looking for an uplifting feeling. Also, Julia Roberts is always great so what else I can say
good one list. I recently watched Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)
Apr 22, 2024
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I recently watched "Inception" again. It's a mind-bending thriller that keeps you hooked from start to finish. Leonardo DiCaprio's performance is stellar! I also love classics like "The Shawshank Redemption" and "Forrest Gump." They're timeless stories with unforgettable characters. As for the new pictures, if you guys are looking for a new movie to watch, check out this article about top movies in theaters now. The website always has the newest updates.
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