Sonic The Hedgehog: The Hero We Need!

Sonic The Hedgehog is an action-adventure comedy film based off the beloved 90’s videogame figure. The plot follows Sonic after he flees his home world and takes up residency on Earth, there he meets Donut Lord (James Marsden), who accidentally tranquilisers him causing him to lose his rings, which Sonic needs to travel between worlds. While all of this is happening the US, government calls in a specialist to check out all the strange goings on, Dr Robotnik (Jim Carrey), who them seeks out Sonic to capture him and use him for his own odds and ends.

Can I just say that as someone who grew up playing Sonic in the early 2000’s this film is a triumph they nail Sonic (Ben Schwartz), Robotnik and the world, more over that post credits scene when they introduce Tails had me giddy with excitement. I am actively looking forward to a Sega shared universe and if all of the entries to the universe are as good as this, we might finally have something to rival the MCU.

My only complaint about this film is that occasionally it focused a bit too much on it’s human characters, while Marsden did a good job the same can’t be said for his in-film wife Maddie/ The Pretzel Lady (Tika Sumpter), who added nothing and was incredibly underdeveloped, the scenes that focused on her and her sister Rachel (Natasha Rothwell), dragged on and on and took away from the overall enjoyment of the film. The joke of Rachel not liking Donut Lord/Mike is used for all it is worth and it is never once funny.

However, Carrey’s turn as Robotnik more than makes up for the lack of comedy and he is phenomenal and hilarious. I didn’t realise until I was sat watching this film how much I had missed seeing Jim Carrey on the big screen, as he was a favourite of mine when I was growing up. Carrey brings some real menace to Robotnik, but also makes him super over the top in the best way, he perfectly walks that line between scary and funny.

Sonic himself looks great and reminds me of the Sonic from my youth, Ben Schwartz does a great job voicing him, he brings a lot of energy to the character and also makes him warm and likeable; there are elements of the latest iteration of Paddington mixed in the there I am sure.

Overall, there is a lot to love about this film, it is not only a great videogame movie, but also the perfect start to a wider universe. Loved it! If you’re a fan of Sonic or, a newcomer to the character I guarantee you will have a good time with this film.


Setting up the world.

I missed Jim Carrey.

The post credits scene.

Sonic himself.


Any scene with Maddie or her sister.


Birds Of Prey: Margot Robbie’s Vanity Project

Birds of Prey is a superhero film based on the DC characters of the same name directed by Cathy Yan. It serves as sequel to Suicide Squad and is set in the DC Universe. The plot of this film is that following her break-up from the Joker, Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie), set out to find out who she is and live her own life, she then gets targeted by a local drug lord and gets mixed up with a wide assortment of characters.

Why did you do this DC? You were on such a streak recently, but then this film came out; which may be the weakest film in the DCEU, but hey I like Batman Vs Superman and Suicide Squad so what do I know.

My issues with this film are on a fundamental level, firstly this isn’t a Birds of Prey film, it’s a Harley Quinn film that is using that name. Huntress (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), Black Canary (Jurnee Smollett-Bell) and Renee Montoya (Rosie Perez) are in the film for maybe 30 minutes in total and are shockingly underused. This film is all about Harley Quinn and it isn’t afraid to show it. Adding to that Cassandra Cain (Ella Jay Basco), a future Bat-girl is also in this film and she may be played by one of the most annoying child actors ever; but that is low hanging fruit, so I won’t rag on it too much.

This film is clearly heavily inspired by the New 52 run on Harley Quinn, which I loved, it has a lot of tonal similarities, but where the comic works the film doesn’t. I don’t know if it is issues in translating it over, but it just seems like it is trying to hard. The random asides, musical and otherwise and the jumping around in time for no real reason, reek to me of them trying too hard to make it edgy and random. Robbie is clearly doing her best Deadpool impression as well. I think the fact that this film doesn’t have Poison Ivy in it, to act as a new love interest for Harley is one hell of a missed opportunity.

The thing I dislike the most about this film is its message which is as aggressive as a punch to the throat. We have two incredibly on the nose scenes in this film, we have on scene where Harley is almost taken advantage of, why include this in your Harley Quinn superhero film as it just sticks out? As well as another scene of Black Canary singing ‘it’s a man’s world’ and it is like I get it film I get your point can you please stop ramming it down my throat it is off putting; showing once again that Hollywood doesn’t understand the meaning of subtly. Moreover, later in the film we have a scene where Black Mask (Ewan McGregor), forces a woman to strip, which once again feels out of place and he hasn’t shown any behaviour before that suggests he would do that kind of evil deed rather than just having her killed. All of these scenes are incredibly jarring and take you out of the experience and make it feel as though you’re being lectured to.

To conclude no wonder this film underperformed it tries too hard, misses a huge character opportunity and has as much subtly as a brick to the face.


The Birds of Prey barring Harley are cool, it’s a shame they are barely developed.


Robbie is trying to be Deadpool see the police evidence locker cocaine scene to see what I mean, it’s obvious.

Cassandra Cain is ridiculously annoying every time she is on screen.

The constant lectures.

The over the top randomness of it all.


Reviewed by Luke

The Big Bang Theory: Life After The Singularity

The Big Bang Theory is a sitcom created by Chuck Lorre and Bill Prady. The plot follows a group of nerdy scientists as they have quirky adventures and misadventures and attempt to find love. The show ran for 12 series with the final series ending last year.

Carrying on from my post about Friends the other day I want to now look at some of that show’s successors one of which is The Big Bang Theory. Whether you love it or, you hate it this show has been around for a long time, longer even than Friends, and it has had an impact on pop culture, even inspiring a spin-off show in Young Sheldon.

I am of the mindset that this show never dipped in quality over it’s run, episodes from season 11 made me laugh just as much as episodes from season 1 or 2, but comedy is subjective. I think the ending of this show, Sheldon (Jim Parsons), winning the Nobel prize and thanking his friends and his wife is the perfect way to end it, the final scene of the show brought more than a few tears to my eyes.

Though some say that the comedy of the show shifted from laughing with the nerds to at them, I don’t agree. I think the characters were done justice to until the end, I think this show as well as some of it’s contemporaries helped in bringing nerd culture to the mainstream; it made being a nerd cool.

I liked how each character was developed over the course of the show and became more rounded, even background characters like Stuart (Kevin Sussman), had arcs and changed; we saw these characters grow as we ourselves did as well. The ending of the show gave all of these characters a sense of closure, except for Raj (Kunal Nayyar), who was left up in the air after his unsuccessful quest for love; I hope we don’t get a Joey esque spin-off for him, and this closure was just what we needed to move past this show.

Overall, I think The Big Bang Theory was less impactful than Friends, but that is not to say it wasn’t influential in its own way, it was. The Big Bang Theory reached out to all the geeks and nerds (myself included) out there who wanted to see a show they could relate to, where the characters aren’t going to parties every night and sleeping with different people near constantly and to them this show was a rallying cry, it made being a nerd cool; something that seemed like an impossibility.

Written by Luke  

Peter Rabbit: Stone Cold Killer

Peter Rabbit is a 3D live-action/computer-animated comedy film directed by Will Gluck. The plot of the film takes inspiration from the Beatrice Potter books of the same name and sees Peter and his family trying to steal from the garden of Thomas McGregor (Domhnall Gleeson), whilst also trying to stop the romance developing between him and the rabbits beloved Bea (Rose Byrne).

What can I say about this film? The only positive I will give this film is the fact that there is nothing else quite like it, it is bizarre in both a good way and a bad way. The good way is due to the fact that Beatrice Potter is interacting with the rabbits she created, so that worked for me in a meta way. However, in the bad way we have baffling decisions like having their be a cockerel character, who openly says things to the extent of, ‘he only had kids because he thought the world was going to end tomorrow and that now he is stuck looking after them’ and ‘he hates his life’. Fear not by the end of the film he loves his life as a single father, but my question is why was this put in? The cockerel is not a main character he is incredibly throw away, so who were his ‘jokes’ aimed at, they certainly weren’t child friendly, so maybe the parents? However, I doubt parents very much would like a lot of what he was saying.

Moreover, the film decides to make Peter evil. I get that he is having a fun war of escalation with McGregor, and McGregor tries to kill Peter, but he is the villain, so it is okay for him to do it. However, Peter (James Corden), who is the hero of the tale tries to kill McGregor both by trying to make him die of an allergic reaction as well as by torturing him with bear traps, it’s sounds like I am joking, but I am not. Why is the hero of a kid’s movie doing this, why?

Furthermore, this film is aggressively dumb and teaches kid’s bad lessons. One of peter’s sister constantly throws herself of things, breaking her ribs, but it’s okay because she has more ribs to break her fall the next time she does it. In no way should this be taught to kids because not only is it not true, but it is the sort of things they might see and try and imitate.

This review has already gone long, so I am not going to go on about James Corden and how the world should leave him behind, he isn’t as annoying as usual here, but it is safe to say that still means he is incredibly annoying.

Overall, the only reason to watch this film is out of morbid curiosity, there are some hilarious moments, not a single one of them is intentional. I wouldn’t let kids watch this because it has a lot of harmful messages and because it is just trash.


Funny when it is not trying to be.

Freakishly bizarre.


Peter Rabbit tries to murder people.

James Corden.

Who is this film for?


Reviewed by Luke

Captain Fantastic: Aragorn after the Return Of The King

Captain Fantastic is a comedy drama film directed by Matt Ross. The plot of the film revolves around a family who live in the woods, they are entirely off the grid and loving it, however after the mother  kills herself it is up to the dad Ben (Viggo Mortensen), to protect his kids as he brings them into the big bad 21st century modern world for their mother’s funeral.

I think this is a beautiful little film, it is quirky and different, and it will make you smile as much as it will make you cry. The film often raises the question is the way Ben and his late wife brought up their kids the right way?  We see many other character judge Ben for not letting his kids go to school, though he home schools them, and just for his parenting style in general: the film doesn’t definitely say one way or the other which style of parenting is right, just as long as you love your kids and that they are happy that is all that really matters.

Ever since I was little, I have always had a thing about film narratives where children are taken from their parents, I don’t know why, but they have always been incredibly hard to watch for me and the same is true of this film. When the children’s grandfather (Frank Langella), tries to take the kids away from Ben it is heart breaking: likewise, when the kids all go after their father and choose to live with him it can’t help but make you cheer.

I think the performances from Mortensen and George MacKay (who plays the oldest son) are both fantastic and were deserving of the awards attention they got. Mortensen perfect captures a mixture of cocky and harsh whilst also being very loving and warm. Whereas MacKay illustrates through his performance the feelings of a child who has outgrown their parent and needs to go and find their own place in the world.

Overall, a wonderful film that is bound to leave an impression on you.




The laughs.

The quirky sensibilities.


It is a little hard to watch at times.


Reviewed by Luke

Narcos Mexico (Season 2): Once Upon A Time In Mexico.

Narcos Mexico (Season 2) is a crime TV series which focuses on the war on drugs. More specifically how it all started, the rise of the Mexican Cartels and the fall of of Miguel Gallardo (Diego Luna), the fallout from the kidnapping of Kiki Camarena and the US response to capture those involved.

Well done! That is what I would say if I could talk to the creative team behind this season, not only have they laid to rest all my fears about this show from the first season, but they managed to create a genuinely tense throughout excellent to watch crime show. Each episode the stakes get raised higher and higher as the DEA and the Cartel, go to further extreme lengths to get what they want. My one complaint with this side of things is that I would have liked to see them to a little further with things sink further into extremes, though I suppose they are hamstrung by real life history.

The performances are top notch here as well, I had issues with Michael Pena’s performance last season, I think his character is incredibly dull and as a result you don’t really care when he dies. However, season 2 remedies this by giving us Walt (Scoot McNairy), a morally complex character who is far more engaging and interesting than last season’s protagonist ever was.

The best thing this season does in my opinion is set up the war to come. One of my issues with season one is that it felt drawn out, season 2 however, feel just long enough: it shows us Gallardo’s last year on top and then teases us with the coming war between Tijuana and Sinaloa cartels. Anyone who keeps up to date on the war on drugs/ or watches Netflix’s El Chapo series will know of the madness to come and the ending monologue of this season ties it all together nicely, “the animals are out of their cage now”.

Overall, a huge step-up in my opinion, a thrill ride through which is helped greatly by a new and better lead and the promise of something big to come. This should definitely be your next Netflix binge.


Scoot McNairy.

Diego Luna.

Perfect pacing.

Thrilling throughout.

The tease of wars to come.




Reviewed by Luke

Aladdin: Disney If You’re Listening Please Stop!

Aladdin is a musical romantic adventure film directed by Guy Ritchie. The plot follows a young street urchin called Aladdin (Mena Massoud), who finds a magical lamp that when rubbed produces a Genie (Will Smith), that then offers him 3 wishes. We all know the classic story.

This is yet another one of Disney’s live action remakes that they seem hell bent on making, even though the animated films are still perfectly good and more importantly no one asked for these new films. Personally, I think of the Disney live action remake trend this is probably the best, Will Smith is entertaining and it is a good date movie, it is very romantic at times.

That said let me get into why this film shouldn’t exist. First things first the very existence of this film is an implied slight to the animation, I know in Western countries there is that underlying belief that animation and animated films are for kids, which simply isn’t true, but even still this film is vastly inferior to the animated original in almost every way.

The characters lack any kind of warmth, the characters in the animated film are funny and endearing, you care about them and want them to be happy; here they’re just eh, I have literally never thought about them again since I left the cinema. Massoud is fine, so are the rest of the cast, but therein lies the problem they’re just fine, they’re trying to be as good as the animated original’s voice cast were and they come up short.

What’s more there is a general cheapness to the film, it is clearly an aesthetic choice to make the film look gritty, but I didn’t like it, it made the film look too washed out and serves to reinforce the lack of fun in this film. What’s more there is a lot of things in this film that date it, that in 5 years’ time people will be like that was such a 2010’s film, which in a way makes it bound to that time period and that isn’t a good thing. The thing that dates it of course is the new song for the film, which is incredibly on the nose and proves that Hollywood doesn’t understand the meaning of the word subtly and instead has to ram political messages into every single film; political messages if done right can be effective, but all this served to make me do was cringe.

My final reason for why you shouldn’t waste your money seeing this is because very little is new. As was the common complaint of The Lion King, which was shot for shot the same, there is little new material in this film, there are a few extra Will Smith Genie scenes and a new song, but everything else is pretty much beat for beat the same. I wouldn’t mind paying to see these live action remakes if they actually did something new, but they don’t, it is just a tired rehash and one I can’t support.


It is romantic.

If you wanted a less fun version of the original film, you will be in luck.


The cheap, gritty look to it.

The new song was bad cringe.

It is just paying to watch the same thing again.


Reviewed by Luke

American Horror Story 1984: Summer Killing, Happened So Fast!

American Horror Story 1984 is the latest iteration of Ryan Murphy’s beloved horror TV series. The plot this time around is inspired by 80’s slashers like Friday The 13th and Sleepaway Camp and sees a group of camp councillors, each with their own mysterious past, travel to Camp Redwood for the summer, only to be hunted down by various slashers; twists and turns ensue.

In the horror TV genre American Horror Story is a staple, I personally rewatch old seasons of the show quite often, it can be both horrifying and entertaining to watch like nothing else can. However, it is also a bi-polar show at times, as the seasons vary quite a bit in quality, different people will love different seasons of the show, but some are definitely better than others.

For me, this was a step up from something like Cult or Roanoke but was also a step down from the previous season of Apocalypse, but that was always going to be a hard season to follow. I think the big issue with 1984 was twofold. Firstly and most dire of the issues, is the fact that there really wasn’t enough story here to fill out the episode count, it could have worked for a few episodes and it did, but as the season went on it just got more and more ridiculous and they tried to stretch it out. The second issue is the fact that series veterans Sarah Paulson and Evan Peters both sat this season out, both of these actors are incredibly talent and bring a lot to the show, which is why their absences from this season leaves such a vacuum.

That isn’t to say the cast that are there don’t do a good job, Emma Roberts is okay, and Billie Lourd is superb, one greatly upstaging the other. What’s more returning actor Dylan McDermott does a lot with very little and makes the most out of his time on screen, he has great on-screen serial killer chemistry with Zach Villa who plays Richard Ramirez; I would have loved to see McDermott’s character be a young Bloody face but I guess it just wasn’t meant to happen. Also, Villa was terrific and would be a great new addition to the cast moving forward.

Overall, the season was good, not to the same level as some of the other seasons, by no means is it great, but it is also not terrible either it is very in-between, it most certainly isn’t rush out and watch it TV.


Slasher horror.

Interesting take.

Zach Villa and Billie Lourd are fantastic.


Not enough story there.

Missing veteran actors.


Reviewed by Luke

The Final Girls: Your New Favourite Summer Movie!

Final Girls is a comedy slasher film directed by Todd Strauss-Schulson. The plot involves a group of friends who get sucked into a summer slasher film and have to survive until the end. Along with this there is a subplot about the main girl Max (Taissa Farmiga), getting to meet a younger version of her mother, who appears as an actress in the in-film film, which is important as she has recently lost her, so there is an element of personal journey their as well.

I think the best praise I can give this film is that it is effortlessly charming, to describe it in as few words as possible it is the best kind of 80’s inspired B movie. I have always had a soft spot in my heart for parody film, Scary Movie, Cabin In The Woods, The Cornetto Trilogy and it carries on here, I think the reason I enjoy this film so much is because it is such a good take on the slasher genre, the mockery is so spot on, but also done with a heaping table spoon of love.

Another thing I commend this film for is using TV actors who don’t/ or at least haven’t yet had the chance to do a lot of film work. This is mainly true of Taissa Farmiga, who unlike her sister hasn’t really translated to film, she has been in a few minor roles here and there and there was of course The Nun, but overall she has been underutilised, she has proven time and again with American Horror Story that she is a fantastic young actor. This film also features Alexander Ludwig, of Vikings fame, who again shines when given the opportunity to be on the big screen. I think both of the young stars prove they have potential and talent in spades with the performances they give in this film.

What’s more I liked the mother daughter dynamic the film has going, I think it nicely adds emotional stakes to the film, without being too melodramatic. The same can be said of the film’s comedy it is a nice compliment to the film rather than being fully focused on, thereby taking away from the excellent slasher horror.

Overall, if you like Slasher films or just Horror in general then you will like this film, it is smart and an excellent parody, boosted by some genuinely fantastic performances; don’t let this one slip under your radar, check it out!


It is smart.

It is an excellent parody.

It takes chances on unproven actors.

They pay off, by giving great performances.

The ending is a thing of beauty.




Reviewed by Luke

Emma: Jane Austen In 2020

Emma. Is a comedy drama film directed by Autumn De Wilde, based on the book of the same name by Jane Austen. The plot follows Emma (Anya Taylor-Joy), a young woman who by her own admission is “handsome, clever and rich”, as she messes with the lives and romances of those around her; whilst also going on a journey of self-discovery, learning things about herself and love.

Austen period dramas aren’t really something that appeal to me greatly, but this one I thought looked promising. From the trailers I was hoping it might turn out to be something like The Favourite a period drama that had an edgy twist and something new to say about the genre; I was badly wrong. This film is by all means just a modern retelling of the same old story, just with a fresh coat of paint and a quirkier sense of humour.

Said quirky sense of humour was for me incredibly hit or miss, some of the jokes in the film had me smiling and chuckling whereas other fell flat; truth be told I found myself laughing quite a few times at things that upon later reflection I’m pretty sure weren’t meant to be funny.

Without that more modern sense of humour, you are just left we a Jane Austen adaptation, which is fine if that is your thing, you will probably love this, but for me I thought it was boring and dull; this is only made worse by the fact that the film goes on for what feels like an eternity, dragging further and further out.

On a more positive note I think Anya Taylor Joy was delightful and did really well in the role, her performance brought something new to the standard leading woman in these kinds of films. Likewise, Bill Nighy as Mr Woodhouse had some great comedic moments and was the standout of any scene, he was in.

Overall, I think I greatly misjudged the tone of this film from the trailers, had I known that it was just yet another modern adaptation of Jane Austen then I probably wouldn’t have gone to see it. Taylor-Joy and Nighy do their best and there are a few laughs to be had throughout, but unless you’re really into Austen I would probably stay well clear of this one.


The jokes that do land.

Anya Taylor-Joy is fantastic.


It is boring.

It is too long.

The humour doesn’t always land.


Reviewed by Luke