Ruskington

IMDb member since February 2019
    Lifetime Total
    500+
    IMDb Member
    2 years, 2 months

Reviews

Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret
(2014)

Profoundly important message but the presenter is insufferable
While there are questions to be asked about the accuracy of some of the information provided in this film, there is no doubt that we are in a seriously awful predicament and that our relationship to food is a major if not primary contributor. Unfortunately, this documentary is presented and narrated by a complete and utter moron. His investigate and interviewing skills are laughable and his conclusions are head-scratching. Hopefully this stumbling block will not deter people from making significant lifestyle and diet changes for the better.

Not a Game
(2020)

Great example of telling people good things about their bad habits
This incredibly one-sided documentary is little more than a bunch of dubious 'experts' and 'pro gamers' romanticising their lame addictions. Yes there may be some small positives for certain unfortunate individuals (who are used mercilessly as pity-bait) but the case for gaming addiction being anything other than a mental illness and serious societal problem is laughable. Throw in some lame woke rambling from this wretched assortment of 'urban strategists' and 'gaming consultants' and you have one of the worst documentaries of recent years.

Contratiempo
(2016)

This movie needs to take a chill pill
If ever there was a movie that was trying too hard, this was it. In its desperate attempt to create a Kaizer Soze moment, there is a complete neglect of plausibility and suspense. Not to mention the fact that all the characters are horribly unlikeable and massively overcooked. There was certainly the potential for a great film but everything about this is needy and far-fetched.

Coach Carter
(2005)

Mildly entertaining, hideously corny
Dripping in cliche, overly long and featuring every black kid stereotype in the book. Coach Carter is a huge disappointment that even Samuel L. Jackson is unable to salvage.

About Time
(2013)

Pleasant enough but far too sickly
A strong cast and some well-delivered humour make this movie an enjoyable watch albeit one that gets a bit too sentimental. The contrived English eccentricity and ridiculously idyllic setting are also just a bit much.

Bullet Boy
(2004)

Unoriginal lethargic twaddle
A horrible story about horrible people in a horrible place. Weak characters, wooden acting and unambitious cinematography make for one seriously amateurish experience that, even at under 90 minutes runtime, feels like it's never going to end.

The Last Samurai
(2003)

Cliches, plot-armour and violence galore
Bulletproof homewrecker and widow-coveter Nathan Algren cosies up to his surprisingly impressionable captor (leapfrogging hundreds of bemused lifetime samurai devotees in the process) as the dashing duo fight tooth and nail for all that is good and holy. A seriously predictable and corny affair that neither shocks or delights.

Dolemite Is My Name
(2019)

Dullemite is right
This dull, bloated mishmash of a movie is genuinely quite difficult to watch. Eddie Murphy appears to be cycling through all of his old characters as he struggles to make Rudy Ray Moore either funny or interesting. Unnecessarily crude and poorly developed.

The Place Beyond the Pines
(2012)

Strange pretentious title is a taste of what's to come
Now don't get me wrong, there is an awful lot to like about this movie. Beautifully shot, a superb cast and an often quite captivating story. However, I still don't quite know what the whole point of it is? It is long but doesn't have the breadth and depth of an epic. It is intense but not particularly moving. It is grandiose but lacks profundity. It often feels like I am the only person on this planet who isn't just bored to tears by Ryan Gosling's moody sullen characters. He is his usual pouty self here and it is a blessed relief when his act is up. Bradley Cooper is as proficient as ever but there is no deep dive into this character or any of his relationships. An ambitious attempt to create an epic masterpiece but is sorely lacking in originality and depth.

Ma
(2019)

Enjoyable to an extent but largely forgettable
Despite a promising start and a surprisingly chilling performance from Octavia Spencer, Ma quickly descends into a predictable and cheesy affair relying heavily on jump scares and shock factor. The whole 'small-town with long-standing grievances' vibe is way overdone and the characters are largely just inanimate tropes. Watchable if you like simple horror movies, but lacking in originality and intelligence.

La tortue rouge
(2016)

Hypnotic, beautiful and disturbing
Wonderful minimalist animation combined with a surprisingly profound tale. A little long maybe, but a remarkable take on what it means to be human and to live on this planet.

Pride
(2014)

Lays it on a little too thick but nevertheless a poignant and heartwarming story
A brilliant cast deliver an often heartbreaking depiction of this unlikely alliance. The ease in which certain individuals cast aside their lifelong prejudices is a little fanciful and overall, the movie tends towards corniness. But there is enough string acting and great comedic writing to make Pride a memorable and moving experience.

Sleeping Beauty
(2011)

Creepy pretentious twaddle
Julia Leigh's indulgent debut movie is a waste of an interesting idea. This slow and often disturbing story relies too heavily on shock value and it is only the strangely captivating performance from Emily Browning that makes it even remotely watchable.

Escape from Alcatraz
(1979)

One of the aging grandfathers of prison movies
Moody, engaging and unmistakeably Eastwood, this slow-moving drama feels a lot more authentic than many modern prison movies. You can see the influence it has had on this genre (most notably Shawshank) and while it can feel a little fanciful in places, Alcatraz is an enduring and captivating experience.

Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels
(1998)

The British Tarantino makes his mark
Over two decades later and Lock Stock feels as fresh and exciting as ever. With hints of Pulp Fiction and Trainspotting, Guy Ritchie carves out his trademark style with some notable performances from a relatively unknown cast. Stylish, witty, clever and endlessly creative.

Into the Wild
(2007)

Happiness only real when shared
While I struggled to see the main character as any sort of hero, Into the Wild is nevertheless a beautiful, thought-provoking and often profound film. Stunning backdrops, quirky characters and hypnotic narration all combine for a memorable viewing experience.

Taare Zameen Par
(2007)

Why so corny?
As someone whose child is strikingly similar to this movie's protagonist, I was highly intrigued by both the story and the profound message. Yet, despite a magnificent lead performance from a very talented young actor, Taare Zameen Par shares many flaws so common to Bollywood movies. Most of all, it is just ridiculously corny- the wholesomeness being shoved so far down your throat that you begin to gag. And it is also just far too long, especially when there is an inordinate amount of unnecessary filler. Aamir Khan's omnipotent hero seems to have an unhealthy interest in stroking young children and his obsession with Ishaan eventually borders on grooming. Oh and don't even get me started on the music...

I have tried to enjoy Indian cinema but the childishness is just too overbearing. And seriously, in a country of over a billion people, do they not have any other actors than Khan? I mean, he's decent enough but surely he doesn't have to be in everything?

Vice
(2018)

Regardless of your views on the subject matter and interpretations, everybody should treat themselves to Christian Bale's sublime performance
Christian Bale's depiction of Dick Cheney is so ridiculously accurate that the actual story almost becomes a sideshow at times. And this may not be a bad thing, given that much of the subject matter is so grotesque you just wish it was entirely fictional. Alongside Bale, Any Adams and Steve Carell are also mesmerising and utterly believable. I can certainly understand how many viewers would be turned off by the bold structure of Vice, but personally I enjoyed this very modern biopic that draws on Scorsese in numerous ways.

Crossroads
(2002)

Leave Britney alone!
I like Britney. I wanted to like this movie.

I did not like this movie.

However, Britney herself isn't actually too bad in it. She's not exactly prime Meryl Streep but I've certainly seen worse leads. It's predominantly the writing that makes Crossroads so unbelievably awful and whoever is responsible should be tried for crimes against screenplay.

Room
(2015)

You probably won't enjoy a second of this but you absolutely must watch it
Horrifying and heartbreaking in equal measure. The astonishing performances from Larson and Tremblay make you forget this is fiction at times. Arguably one of the greatest child performances of all-time in fact. I was glad that not all the film took place in Room- I'm not sure I could have copied with much more of that.

Tonari no Totoro
(1988)

Nostalgia for a simpler time
Beautiful movie that captures the magic and simplicity of childhood. Can be, and should be, enjoyed by all ages.

Weekend
(2011)

The simplicity and complexity of sex and romance
Beautifully directed, intelligently scripted and bought to life by a wonderfully restrained performance from Tom Cullen. Weekend is free of the overbearing dreariness of gay movies such as God's Own Country and Beach Rats and is all the better for it.

Adrift
(2018)

Doesn't do the real story any justice
The potential was there for a captivating drama but Adrift is let down by choppy storytelling and poor on-screen chemistry between the two leads.

The constant timeline changes disrupt the flow and suck all the tension out of the movie, which is salvaged only by some impressive editing. Another tepid Shailene Woodley performance doesn't help matters either.

Kingpin
(1996)

Gross-out comedy at its finest
Something of a sleeper amongst nineties movies, Kingpin is an unapologetically crude and lewd comedy that delivers endless great punchlines. The highly adept cast seem fully on board with the story and hold nothing back, leading to a gloriously indulgent guffaw-fest.

Shutter Island
(2010)

An exciting ride but ultimately lacking in originality and ingenuity
Undoubtedly stylish and unabashedly Hitchcockian, Shutter Island is brewing with promise in its early stages. However, as the story progresses it becomes clear where things are heading and everything feels a bit derivative and obvious. The reliance on stark brutality to provide meaning and motive is unrelenting and the final act is much more gruesome than captivating. A long way from Scorsese's best work.

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