Finding Your Feet: Everyone Needs A Second Act

Finding Your Feet is a British romantic comedy directed by Richard Loncraine. The film follows Sandra (Imelda Staunton), a woman who finds out that her husband is cheating on her, as a result of this she moves out of her life of luxury and moves in with her hippy sister and sees a different side of life.

The plot of this film is fairly standard, it’s a wrong side of the tracks romance, where a rich person experience life and love outside of their rigid social circle and see that life in high society isn’t so bad.

It has been done before. However, I don’t think that the romance is the strong part of this film, I think the strong part of this film is the drama.

Though for the most part this film is light-hearted viewing, with nothing too challenging to process, there are some very raw emotional scenes that cut you right to the core. The scenes I am talking about are when Sandra is speaking at her sister funeral and when Charlie (Timothy Spall), goes to see his wife in the home and she doesn’t recognise him; these moments break your heart.

These scenes help the film to feel real, rather than just positive fluff, because just like in real life there are good times and bad. The performances in this film are first class as well, Staunton and Spall both give powerful performances that show to anyone who was silly enough to doubt them that they still have it.

You really end up caring about the characters and want to see them happy, when it looks like Sandra is going back to her husband and isn’t perusing her relationship with Charlie it breaks your heart and you actively say “noooooo” out loud.

Overall, this is your standard feel good family comedy, it makes you smile, it makes you laugh and every now and again it makes you cry and that is what sets it apart from other films like it; it has an ability to strike you right in your core and that makes it powerful. Yet another hit for Staunton and Spall.


Great emotional stakes.

Spall and Staunton are both fantastic.

Very feel good.


It is a bit too long.

The character don’t make decisions normal people would in the same situations.


Reviewed by Luke

Tigers Are Not Afraid: Narcos Vs Ghosts

Tigers Are Not Afraid is a Mexican crime fantasy film directed by Issa Lopez. The film is about a group of orphans who are on the run from the Mexican cartel, there is also a mythical supernatural element surrounding the lead character Estrella (Paola Lara) having 3 wishes that seemingly come true; leading to horrific consequences.

This film isn’t scary, when I first put it on, I was under the impression that Tigers Are Not Afraid was a horror film, how wrong I was. This film to sum up is an hour and a half in soul destruction, it is so sad, in near everyway. The real-world cartel drama is far more impactful than the supernatural elements, because cartels exist in real life and everything that the cartel does to the kids over the course of the film probably happens hundreds of times every day; it’s scary because its real.

The idea that none of the supernatural elements are real and are instead a way for the kids to cope with everything going on around them is very interesting. The film never comes out and says this is or isn’t what is happening, but it does elude to it several times.

Whenever any of the supernatural forces show up, the style of the film changes, pictures and images appear on walls, random colour cross the screen, I liked this stylistic choice and thought it gave the film a sense of originality as it was something I had ever seen before in a film.

This film is most certainly not for everyone as there are moments that are unrelentingly sad, horrible things happen to the kids in this film and that is really hard to watch. In the final conformation of the film we see the main boy get shot through the face, by the big bad drug lord and it is traumatising.

Overall, this film is something everyone should see once, it is beautiful and unique, but it is also soul destroying and tear provoking, so by all means watch it, but be warned it is not an easy watch.


The art style change.

The originality.

The grim reality.


The horror doesn’t really work with the drama.

It is very unpleasant and hard to watch at times.


Reviewed by Luke

Aeronauts: Life In The Outer-Atmosphere

Aeronauts is a biographical adventure film directed by Tom Harper. The plot follows a pilot Amelia (Felicity Jones), and a scientist, James Glaisher (Eddie Redmayne), who try and go higher in the air than anyone has ever done before, in doing this they hope to prove that the Earth’s atmosphere and layers and that the weather can be predicted.

Even thought this film isn’t a horror film it scared me more than a lot of horror films I have seen recently. The reason for this is because I have a huge fear of heights and every time, they were hanging off the balloon, with just a bit of rope stopping them from falling to their deaths, it gave me sweaty palms and a keen sense of anxiety.

Both of the leads do a good job, Jones is the better of the two, her sub-plot about her husband who died is well done and all of the flashbacks feel relevant. Redmayne is serviceable and doesn’t really do much to impress, the only scene that made me feel something is when he talks to his father who has dementia; it is sweet and well done.

This film actively made me scared to got in a hot air balloon, as it seems like dangerous business, so if it was going for a thriller angel it did that well. I think it had a palpable sense of dread throughout, and I was on the edge of my seat the whole time; I actively wanted both characters to survive until they made it back and that is a testament to the film.

Overall, I think this film is a great one-time watch, it is thrilling and more than a little bit informative, there are sense that will have you sweaty and wincing; especially if like me you have a fear of heights. However, it is not something that I would watch again as it doesn’t have any re-watchability.


The thrills.

The sub-plot about Amelia’s dead husband.

The scene between James and his dad.


It is forgettable.

None of the performances blow you away.


Reviewed by Luke

Body At Brighton Rock: A Body, A Bear And One Hell Of A Bad Night

Body at Brighton Rock is a horror thriller film written and directed by Roxanne Benjamin. The plot sees park ranger Wendy (Karina Fontes), get lost in the woods with a dead body, and a potential killer on the loose. She has to rise to the occasion and survive the night, protecting the crime scene until the police and the park rangers arrive in the morning.

This film is a triumph in multiple ways, firstly the very idea of being lost in the woods and having to say their overnight is terrifying. As I was watching this film I was anxious the entire time, and the character acted the way a normal person would, she was scared and worried, she didn’t immediately adapt to the situation and think nothing of it, like a lot of film characters do, I liked that.

Secondly, the idea of a killer roaming the woods adds extra anxiety to an already tense situation, the interactions Red (Casey Adams), has with Wendy all have an underlying threat that builds over the film. What’s more the twist at the end, that the killer was a ghost all along and is in fact the man whose corpse Wendy has been with this whole time is inspired and adds a nice extra element to the ending, adding rewatch value.

Finally, I really like the style of the film, the editing, soundtrack and the use of camera angels all create a very distinct sense of personality that makes this film unlike anything else you will ever watch. The sequence of Wendy listening to music and dancing down the trail can’t help but make you laugh.

My only issue with this film, the one thing that stops it from being a 5/5, is that I think it drags a little bit especially in the second act. The whole film feels like it is on for far longer than it actually is and that is something that ruins the film just a little bit.

Overall, this is a terrifically original film, it is a triumph in many ways and is defiantly a must watch if you have Shudder.


The premise.

The originality.

The killer/ or lack thereof.

The dancing sequence.

The anxiety of it.


It drags on.


Reviewed by Luke

Shazam: Big 2.0

Shazam is a superhero film directed by David F. Sandberg, it is the 7th instalment in the DCEU. The plot follows Billy Batson (Asher Angel), a young foster kid who has spent most of his life trying to find his biological mum after she abandoned him at a fair. One day an old wizard calls upon Billy to take up the mantel of Shazam (Zachery Levi), and stop the evil that the 7 Deadly Sins have bought into the world, as well as defeat evil scientist Dr. Thaddeus Sivana (Mark Strong).

Of all the DC Comics heroes Shazam is probably the one that I am the least familiar with, as such it was neat to learn his origin story. I think the story choice of having Billy be a foster kid that constantly runs away from foster homes to look for his mum, who he believes is the only family he needs, only to have it turn out that his mum deliberately abandoned him is an inspired choice. This choice was surprisingly dark for a family film and I appreciated that. What’s more this gave the moment when Billy finally excepts his foster family far more emotional weight.

As anyone who has ever seen Chuck can tell you Zachery Levi might be the most charming man on the planet, he was great in the Thor films though he only had a small part and he is terrific here in a larger superhero role. He perfectly captures the Big mentality, being a kid’s brain in the body of a grown man, as he plays the character with a healthy does of innocence and naivety. When his big hero moment finally comes it feels earned.

Furthermore, Mark Strong does a great turn as the villain, his character is threatening and menacing and dominates the screen every time he appears. Strong proves once again that he is one of the most versatile actors currently working. The boardroom scene is one of my favourites of last year, you will know why when you watch it.

I think this might be the most underrated and perhaps the best DCEU film. The emotional stakes are pitch perfect, Zachery Levi is magnificent, and the film isn’t afraid to get dark, which it does several times to great effect.


Zachery Levi.

The darkness.

The humour.

The emotional stakes.

The wider universe.


None, I have seen this several times and it holds up each watch.


Reviewed by Luke

Vanishing On 7th Street: Anakin Fights The Darkness

Vanishing on 7th Street is a post-apocalyptic thriller film directed by Brad Anderson. The plot revolves around a world were the darkness is closing in all around us, each day there is less and less sunlight to a point where we are basically living in darkness. To make matters worse when a person is trapped in the darkness, they become consumed and disappear from existence. This has been going on for an undetermined about of time and most of humanity is gone.

The premise for this film is terrifying and it stayed with me long after I saw it. Every day we spend a large amount of our time in the dark and if that became fatal the fallout would be unimaginable. I think for the most part this scary premise was lived up to, my one complaint would be I never understood the powers of the darkness. The darkness seems to be able to turn off lights and drain electrical devices of their power, but other times they can’t. Sometimes the shadow people seem to be threatening monsters who want nothing more than to lure people out into the darkness to kill them, other times it is loved ones watching over the characters. The differences between the two types of shadow people is never explained.

I am sure these figures are left deliberately ambiguous, which works to an extent, but I would like to have them explained a little bit more.

The cast for the most part to a good job, Hayden Christensen is a strong leading man; he really gets an unfairly bad reputation from Star Wars. The rest of the cast are serviceable, they do a good job conveying emotion, but they aren’t on the same level as Christensen.

The worst thing about this film is the blatant product placement. I have seen many films with product placement, but this one is especially blatant. I wouldn’t be surprised if this whole film was an advert for AMC Cinemas, as they are constantly featured, so much so that it takes you out of the overall experience.

I think overall this is an intriguing thriller, the premise is scary and the execution is strong as well, Christensen proves that he is a great leading man, if the product placement was less egregious and the shadow people were more clearly defined this could have been a very good film, but still as is it is on the better side of average.


Christensen is great.

The premise is strong.

It is scary and says with you.


The product placement.

The shadow people are scary but aren’t clearly defined and as such are confusing.


Wilderness: The Spiritual Sequel To Dog Soldiers

Wilderness is a British-Irish horror film directed by Michael J. Bassett. The plot follows a group of young offenders who are sent to an island, after they murder one of their wardmates. The island punishment is supposed to be an extreme form of rehabilitation for the prisoners, but it takes a blood turn when something on the island starts hunting them down one by one, slaughtering them in horrific ways.

I have never had a problem with gore, I have never been squeamish, I can watch Saw and Hostel all day long, but there is something about the gore in this film that made me wince. Being a British horror film the gritty reality of it all is played up to max effect, you don’t get a peeved off spirit throwing people down the stairs in a very bloodless way, oh no, here you get to see someone be mauled to death by dogs and someone else be burnt alive. It was at times hard to watch.

The cast is a who’s who of famous British actors we have Sean Pertwee of Gotham and Dog Soldiers fame and Toby Kebbell in this. Kebbell is the leading man and is by far the nicest of the characters, most of whom are awful, awful people who are all too real; some of whom inspire hate in you from the minute they come on screen. Pertwee is the prison guard who accompanies the boys to the island, he is as charming as ever, sadly he is killed off early in the film.

Something I like about this film is when it is revealed what is killing the prisoners, it is done in a sympathetic way, you understand why it is doing what it is doing and it helps to keep the film grounded in reality. It really highlights the moral ambiguity of society and shows how are right might be someone else’s wrong and what better way to teach that then by watching a dog rip out someone’s eyeball.

Overall, this is an incredibly grim watch, one that won’t be for most people, but if you like gritty British horror than you will undoubtably find something to like here; just maybe watch something happier after it?


Sean Pertwee.

The reveal.

The kills.


Very grim.

A little bit hard to watch at times.


Reviewed by Luke      

Polaroid: A Testament To Modern Horror

Polaroid is a supernatural horror film directed by Lars Klevberg. The plot follows troubled outsider Bird (Katheryn Prescott), who is given an old Polaroid camera by a young man who is trying to woo her. Little do either of them know that the camera is haunted by the spirit of an evil photographer, who used the camera to take nude pictures of his daughter and then kill her friends when they tried to stop him and now, he is back.

Why does no one in this small town seem to remember these grisly murders? Why are there 3 really unnecessary confusing plot twists in this film? Why is the camera killing people who are not even related to his daughter secret? Who knows, who knows that is all I can say about the plot of this film; which really does prove that these days anything, and I do mean anything, will be turned into a horror film.

This film is not aggressively good or bad but rather it is just incredibly generic, you have seen the same premise, just without the camera, before. There is nothing new or original about this film, even down to the individual character. Bird is the troubled girl who is grieving a parent and thinks that their death was her fault, I wonder where I have heard that before, oh yeah Annabelle Comes Home and about 100 other film horror films. She has a stereotypical group of friends who are all vapid and self-obsessed, which seems to be a staple of modern horror films and everything is just incredibly samey.

The actual monster itself is just lazy creature design, normally it is a good thing to not show the monster and build suspense, but here you just end up hoping they won’t because it looks so bad, laughably so. The wheezing that seems to indicate when the monster/demon/spirit is around is not in any way scary.

Everything about this film is generic, it is lazy and does nothing new. The monster isn’t scary and the threat it represents to the characters is never really explained, the plot holes in the film only make this worse. There is no reason why the monster would go after the central group of kids, they have nothing to do with his daughter, it makes no sense at all. If this was an exercise in product placement for Polaroid, then they should ask for their money back.


Some of the creature elements are cool.

The mystery is good up until the final half hour.


It has been done better before.

You don’t care about any of the characters.

It is offensively dumb.


Reviewed by Luke

A Star Is Born: A Romance To Stand The Tests Of Time

A Star Is Born is a romantic drama film directed by Bradley Cooper, it is the third remake of the 1937 classic. The plot follows a hard-drinking self-destructive musician Jackson (Bradley Cooper), as he falls in love with a young singer called Ali (Lady Gaga). The film chronicles Ally’s rise as well as Jackson’s fall, with the love story acting as a means to show this.

Before I get into this review, I need to talk about the music. Music is a central focus of this film, and as such it is very important, with there being multiple songs scattered throughout. ‘Shallow’, is the big original song for the film and it is great, it is passionate and emotional, and you feel something every time you hear it, both Gaga and Cooper really nail the music. In many ways, both are incredibly believable as great musicians and that is the highest compliment I can give.

I have never seen any of the A Star Is Born film’s before this one so I was unfamiliar with the story, as such I can’t say to you how faithful of a remake this is, or if it is better or worse than the other versions.

Personally, I thought the film’s story was incredibly effective, I bought into the romance and genuinely warmed to the characters; which made Jackson’s self-destruction hurt all the more. This film has great emotional stakes, which is a result of the very, very believable chemistry between Gaga and Cooper, it is almost impossible to think they don’t actually love each other.

My one complaint about this film is that it is too long, and this is a problem that I believe ultimately ruins the film. If this film had really just focused on Ally and Jackson’s relationship and ignored everything else, all the needless B plots, all the musical drama, then it would be at least half an hour sorter and all the better for it. There are some many sub-plots and so many needless one note characters that the film feels so overstuffed that it loses focus of what makes it good, I don’t care about what Jackson’s brother is up to, or that he has an overly long drawn out backstory, I just want to see the two leads interact.

Overall, the music is what saves this film from being a very by the numbers rom-com. The two leads have great on-screen chemistry, but the lack of focus means that you get bogged down with other characters and barely get to see it.


The leads chemistry.

The music.

The emotional stakes.


All the side-characters and B-plots.

Far, far too long.


The Cat Returns: Studio Ghibli Gone Bad?

The Cat Returns is a Japanese animated film directed by Hiroyuki Morita. The plot revolves around Haru (Chizuru Ikewaki), who ends up saving the life of the Cat Kingdoms Prince Lune (Takayuki Yamada), without knowing who he is. After this she is perused by the King of the Cat Kingdom, who is intent on her marrying his son. She then has to venture to the Cat Kingdom, to try and escape the whole situation.

This is the third film in my Studio Ghibli odyssey, and I have to say it is the worst thus far. Of the three films I have seen so far, this is the shortest, which you would think is a mercy, but it is not. There is nothing wrong with the start of the film or with Haru herself, she is fine, it is everything that happens from the Bureau onwards that is the problem. I understand that the Japanese culture might be slightly different from what I am used to, but all the elusions to bestiality made me feel uncomfortable. There is no other way to say it than Haru is attracted to her Cat protector and despite the film turning her into a cat midway through, don’t ask me why, it still feels wrong.

Narratively, the film is a mess, when compared to something like Princess Monokoe or My Neighbour Totoro,       is a complete dumpster fire story wise. Things just happen with no rhyme or reason and the plot is so thin that when these things happen you are left saying wait what. I genuinely believe if this film did not have the Studio Ghibli name attached to it, then it wouldn’t even be considered watchable let alone good.

None of the film feels satisfying either, you don’t care about any of the characters, as they aren’t developed, they are just kind of there, the ending as well adds very little to call it an anti-climax would be an understatement.

Overall, this film just wasn’t for me, I am a cat person, but even still I found precious few things to like about it. I was left feeling uncomfortable and vaguely confused by it and one thing is for sure, that is an hour and 15 minutes of my time I am never going to get back.


It’s only on for 75 minutes.

Haru is okay.


It makes no sense.

The bestiality undertones.

It was a slog to get through.