Rob Watches Movies

Reviews of every film I watch. The Good, The Bad and The Mothman Prophecies.

Tag: Lists

Cinematic New Years Resolutions: 10 Films That I Should Have Seen Ages Ago

I will watch these films in 2018. I will watch these films in 2018. I will watch these films in 2018…

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Top Ten Alternative Christmas Songs

We all know what the best Christmas song is. It’s ‘Fairytale of New York’. There is no debate. That is the best one. However, there is a tendency at Christmas to fall back on the same old songs and the same old bands. Rather than doing that this year, here is an alternative to the normal rabble. The only rule is no covers, and nothing that clogs up all the usual festive playlists at Christmas times. Let’s go…

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5 Terrible Bands That I Love Anyway

Firstly, I’d like to say that there is no such thing as a ‘guilty’ pleasure. If you like something then you like it, it’s as simple as that. That doesn’t mean however that one should be unable to objectively listen to something and know, deep in their hearts, that it is terrible. My music collection is actually full of artists like this. Here are five of the worst of them…

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Top Ten TV Shows of 2016

If my list of the best albums of the year revealed a troubling lack of ingenuity and excellence, then this list is the perfect tonic. 2016 has been a landmark year for TV. With behemoth’s like Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead either winding down or losing focus, we are looking at a potential void to be filled on the small screen in the coming years. And boy were there some contenders to do just that in 2016.

Last year, I decided to include all TV shows, including those that were long established. To stop repeat inclusions, this list only includes new shows that came out in the last 12 months. Lets get down to business… Continue reading

Top 10 Stephen King Film Adaptations

With any art, whether it be film, music or high grade pornography, there are certain artists that grab you and never let go, no matter how much you change as a person. I often say that music was my first love but I actually discovered Roald Dahl and Enid Blyton way before Oasis and Pulp. The first author to really get under my skin however, was Stephen King.

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The 10 Best Things of 2016 So Far

2016 has already been a terrible, awful year for the human race but a surprisingly decent one for music, film and TV. Below are the 10 best things of 2016 so far.

DISCLAIMER – As always, I am only one man so there is plenty of stuff I haven’t seen yet, most notably Deadpool and Vinyl. Don’t treat me too harshly.

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RANKED: David Fincher

After ranking Quentin Tarantino‘s films, I have turned my attention to David Fincher. It is almost impossible to separate his work when you get to the business end of the list such is it’s quality but I have tried my very best.

10. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo (2011)

‘Hold still. I’ve never done this before, and there will be blood.’

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Despite the huge success of the book upon which the film is based and also the critical acclaim it received, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo did nothing for me.

Sparse and colourless sets as well as a typically wooden performance from Daniel Craig combine for a grim and lifeless adaptation. A well made film it may be but I can’t imagine ever watching The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo again.

9. Panic Room (2002)

‘I spent the last 12 years of my life building rooms like this specifically to keep out people like us’

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Kristen Stewart staring blankly into space. Standard.

Probably the most neglected film in Fincher’s body of work, possibly because it followed the all conquering Fight Club, Panic Room is still a tense thriller and a mostly enjoyable film.

Notable for the first appearance of Kristen Stewart and her three facial expressions as well as an excellent lead performance from Jodie Foster, Panic Room is unlucky to be sandwiched between Fight Club and Zodiac.

8. Gone Girl (2014)

‘Everyone knows that ‘complicated’ is a code word for bitch.’

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Ben Affleck was the bomb in Phantoms.

Never has a film filled me with such mixed feelings before than Gone Girl. Amazingly acted and containing some great scenes, Gone Girl should be a classic but the normally focused direction of David Fincher jars with the sprawling, ethereal third act.

Gone Girl is David Fincher’s most recent film and one of his most successful and despite all it’s flaws (of which it does have many) it can’t be denied as a memorable piece of work.

7. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008)

‘It’s funny how sometimes the people we remember the least make the greatest impression on us’

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Based on F. Scott Fitzgerald’s short story of the same name, Benjamin Button is sometimes dismissed by Fincher fans as his attempt to make a sappy Hollywood flick. Whilst there is some truth to that, Benjamin Button is still a touching and beautiful film and a more poignant update on the massively overrated Forrest Gump.

6. The Game (1997)

‘They fuck you and fuck you and fuck you, and just when you think it’s over, that’s when the real fucking begins!’

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The Game is a paranoid neo-noir thriller that sees Michael Douglas immersed into a live action video game. Years before it’s time and boasting a pair of excellent performances from Sean Penn and Michael Douglas, The Game is perhaps the most forgotten of all of Fincher’s work which is unfair for such a well realized film.

5. ALIEN3 (1992)

‘Why? Why are the innocent punished? Why the sacrifice? Why the pain? There aren’t any promises. Nothing’s certain.’

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David Fincher’s directorial début was roundly hated on release with underwhelming box office results and Aliens director James Cameron commenting ‘Hated it. Simple as that. I hated what they did…. I couldn’t stand ALIEN3′

To paraphrase the great Hunter S. Thompson it is time for an agonizing reappraisal of ALIEN3.  Fincher stated he didn’t want to rehash the first two wildly successful Alien films so he stamped his own inimitable film making style on the third Alien entry and when judged on it’s own merits and not against it’s predecessors, ALIEN3 stands up by itself as a brilliantly twisted sci fi film.

4. The Social Network (2010)

‘A guy who makes a nice chair doesn’t owe money to everyone who has ever built a chair.’

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The Social Network is not only the best thing that Aaron Sorkin has ever written but also Jesse Eisenberg and Justin Timerblake’s finest hour. Stealing every scene though is Andrew Garfield who showed his potential to be the next Ed Norton with a vulnerable yet charismatic performance.

It may have played fast and loose with the facts at times but facts are boring. Facebook would be a whole lot more interesting if Mark Zuckerberk was closer to his on screen counterpart.

3. Se7en (1995)

‘Wanting people to listen, you can’t just tap them on the shoulder any more. You have to hit them with a sledgehammer, and then you’ll notice you’ve got their strict attention.’

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David Fincher recovered from the critical bashing of Alien3 to produce one of the most unforgettable films of the 90’s in Se7en. A grotesque twist on the buddy cop genre sees Morgan Freeman and Brad Pitt nurture a wonderful chemistry and of course the conclusion is one of the most iconic film endings ever. Also who wouldn’t to spend two hours listening to Morgan Freeman quote poetry.

2. Fight Club (1999)

‘I am Jack’s… complete lack of surprise.’

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A film so emphatically superior to its source material that it forced Fight Club author Chuck Palahniuk to comment:

Now that I see the movie… I was sort of embarrassed of the book, because the movie had streamlined the plot and made it so much more effective and made connections that I had never thought to make’.

Endlessly quotable and with another wonderful double act in Brad Pitt and Ed Norton, Fight Club is perhaps the biggest film of its generation and has been homaged and ripped off countless times since it’s release as the last great film of the 90’s.

1. Zodiac (2007)

‘I need to know who he is. I need to stand there, I need to look him in the eye, and I need to know that it’s him.’

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As well as being possibly the most underrated film ever made, Zodiac also boasts an array of incredible performances from Jake Gyllenhaal’s obsessive Robert Graysmith to Robert Downey Jr’s enigmatic and drunken Paul Avery.

The jewel in the crown for Zodiac though (other than Fincher’s peerless direction and pacing) is Mark Ruffalo’s astonishing turn as David Toschi. I often try and swing conversation at parties to Zodiac just so I can talk endlessly about how good Ruffalo is in this film. I don’t get invited to parties too often…

Fascinating subject matter and endlessly watchable, Zodiac is about as good as acting and direction can possibly be. One of my all time favourite films.

 

 

 

 

Top Ten Greatest Horror Movie Killers

I have spent far too many hours of my life sat in my own filth watching horror movie after horror movie, so there is no greater authority on this subject than me. With that in mind, I bring you the greatest horror movie killers of all time:

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Top Five Movie Bartenders

A good barman is a noble and rare beast. Here is a list of the greatest movie bartenders ever to yield a damp cloth:

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1. Lloyd – The Shining

Most barmen turn into a shivering wreck when faced with the slightest sign of complexity. Not Lloyd. Lloyd handles the notion that he is either a figment of Jack Torrance’s deranged mind or one of many impeccably dressed ghosts haunting an old hotel with a quiet dignity and professionalism.

Lloyd is the type of guy who would never let a touch of existential despair get in the way of a classic Jack Daniels on the rocks. He is also ‘The best Goddamn bartender from Timbuktu to Portland Maine…or Portland Oregon for that matter.’

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2. Spider – Goodfellas

Spider has an inauspicious start in his role as primary bartender at an underground mob joint. He has a poor rapport with customers, a lousy attitude and his dancing leaves a lot to be desired. When he returns after being shot by Joe Pesci’s menacing gangster Tommy De Vito however Spider is a changed man.

A good barman should be full of confidence and Spider is not afraid to tell an imposing gangster to go fuck himself. Though he might be dead, his spirit lives on in downtrodden, hard working bar folk everywhere. Extra points for popping up in the Sopranos alive and well.

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3. Razor Charlie – From Dusk Till Dawn

It is essential that a barman can handle their customers whether they be bikers, vampires or Harvey Keitel. Danny Trejo’s Razor Charlie deals with all three heroically whilst also sporting a tremendous moustache.

The reasons for RC’s inclusion on this list are plentiful . He works in a bar called the Titty Twister. He makes George Clooney look silly by pouring George a drink and then drinking it himself. I’ll just let that sink in a second… HE MAKES GEORGE CLOONEY LOOK SILLY. Also THAT moustache!

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4. Gary – The Big Lebowski

It is quite difficult to picture Gary even though pop culture hero Jeffrey ‘The Dude’ Lebowski maintains a pretty constant relationship with him throughout the Coen Brothers cult classic. It is this anonymity that makes Gary such a true pro. Rarely seen or heard; he lends a sympathetic ear to the dudes ongoing woes whilst also serving up a mean White Russian.

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5. Brian Flanagan – Cocktail

The irrepressible Brian Flanagan is probably the most famous bartender in the movie world which makes him annoyingly difficult to leave off this list. Tom Cruise’s Flanagan may not be cool but he undoubtedly has talent. He would work in the upstairs cocktail bar but would be shunned by his co-workers.

Bar Manager:
Rick Blaine (Casablanca)
Because of course it is.

Doorman:
Dalton (Roadhouse)
Just ask Peter Griffin!

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