100 Word Review – Mindhorn (2016)

Somewhere between Alan Partridge and Hot Fuzz, this is British comedy at its finest. Written by and starring Julian Barratt (Mighty Boosh) and Simon Farnaby (Bunny & The Bull), it’s jam-packed with British talent, hearty laughs and a truly entertaining storyline.

Richard (Barratt) used to played Mindhorn, a TV detective whose eye let him see the truth. More than 20 years later, and nearing the end of a failing acting career, Richard is called back to play his greatest role, to help solve a murder.

With a fantastic supporting cast, including a show-stopping turn from Russell Tovey (The Pass, The History Boys).

100 Word Review – Absolutely Anything (2015)

Written and directed by Terry Jones (of Monty Python fame) with the help of skilled screenwriter Gavin Scott (Small Soldiers, The Borrowers), this is a weird and wonderful concoction.

Neil (Simon Pegg) is a teacher and aspiring writer when he is given the powers to do absolutely anything by a group of all-powerful aliens (voiced by the Python crew). The fate of the world rests on whether he uses his powers for good or evil.

With Kate Beckinsale and Robin Williams supporting, this film is brilliantly put together and very funny. It’s also extremely silly, in the best possible way.

100 Word Review – Cloud Atlas

Adapted from David Mitchell’s novel and directed by Tom Tykwer (Run Lola Run, Perfume:The Story of a Murderer) and the Wachowskis (The Matrix, V for Vendetta), this film is extraordinary.

There is no describing the plot. It crosses time and space in seconds, covering both the past, present and future as well as alternate worlds.

The cast is fantastic (Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Hugo Weaving, Hugh Grant, Doona Bae, Jim Broadbent, Susan Sarandon) and the cinematography is exquisite. There is simply too much to see to take it in with one viewing. This film is Romantic with a capital R.

100 Word Review – Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)

The Monty Python (Life of Brian, Meaning of Life) guys are on a quest.

Follow King Arthur (Graham Chapman), Lancelot The Brave (John Cleese), Sir Galahad the Pure (Michael Palin) and Sir Robin the Not-Quite-So-Brave-As-Sir Lancelot (Eric Idle) along with a host of other characters (Terry Jones, Terry Gilliam) as they seek the Holy Grail.

Complete with witches, shrubberies, unladen swallows, a killer bunny and a castle of French men, this film is everything you would expect from the Monty Python crew. Gilliam’s animation are wonderful as always, as are the random jokes. Endlessly quotable, historically inaccurate and thoroughly British.

100 Word Review – Stardust (2007)

Adapted from Neil Gaiman’s (Coraline, Mirrormask) brilliant novel, prepare for a fabulous flight of fantasy.

Determined to prove his love by returning with a fallen star, Tristan (Charlie Cox) sets out into the land beyond the wall, unaware of the witches, kings and pirates waiting for him on the other side.

Dream-team Matthew Vaughn and Jane Goldman (Kick-Ass, Kingsman) wrote and directed this seriously star-studded film. Clare Danes, Ian McKellen, Mark Strong, Michelle Pfeiffer and Robert De Niro co-star to name just the best known. It’s fun, mostly family friendly, funny and completely fantastic in every sense of the word.

100 Word Review – Theatre Of Blood (1973)

Vincent Price at his most dastardly and most dramatic.  

A Shakespearean actor (Price) plagued by negative reviews fakes his own death and takes revenge on those who refused him critical acclaim, choosing methods written by the bard himself.

As the name suggests, be prepared for a gore fest that only the 1970s could produce. It brings together melodrama and absurdity that is absolutely thrilling to witness. The question moves from being is what is he doing, to exactly how graphically are they going to show it extremely quickly.

In this film, there is no such thing as a pleasant death.

100 Word Review – The Machine (2013)

A wonderful example of modern British Sci Fi. 

Set in a future where Britain is at war with China. Vincent (Toby Stephens) is a brilliant scientist with a tragic past, working with Ministry of Defence money to develop artificial intelligence to help his ailing daughter. But what’s the true cost of his research?

Written and directed by Caradog W James, with Caity Lotz and Denis Lawson co-starring, it is a truly thrilling cinematic experience. There’s something of the Film Noir about it.

Is it a fable for the future or a dark foreboding for the present? Either way it’s wonderful.

100 Word Review – Sightseers (2012)

This film is proof that you don’t have to go far from home to create a truly twisted feature. 

In an attempt to show his girlfriend (writer Alice Lowe) the world, Chris (co-writer Steve Oram) takes her on a caravan holiday in the Lake District. But as circumstances seem to conspire against them, they deal with it the only way they can… Murder.

Dark, hilarious and full of those little frustrations that most Brits are too, well, British to confront.

Director Ben Wheatley (Kill List, A Field In England) is a master of the macabre, and one to watch for.

100 Word Review – Man Up (2015)

Currently in cinemas across the UK, buy your tickets now! 

Lake Bell (yes, she’s American but she can do a surprisingly good British accent) stars as Nancy, a cynical 30-something who ends up on someone else’s blind date, with not-quite-over-it divorcee Jack (Simon Pegg).

With a whole host of excellent British actors (too many to mention here), this is the debut feature from writer Tess Morris and hopefully the first of many! Director Ben Palmer (The Inbetweeners Movie) has done a marvellous job, taking the audience on a journey that is truly awkward, funny, romantic and just down right wonderful.