Monthly Film Roundup: August 2022

Films Watched: 19

How Many Were First-Time Watches: 16

Best Films: Before Midnight (2013), The Master (2012), Training Day (2001)

New Releases: Bullet Train, Nope, Bodies Bodies Bodies, The Invitation


Bicycle Thieves (1948)
A beautifully observed Italian neo-realist film following a father and his son as they search for a stolen bike. While it doesn’t live up to the ‘greatest ever’ label often given to it, it remains a fabulously important document of post-war filmmaking 

Superbad (2007)
Jonah Hill and Michael Cera make a fabulous pairing in this totally entertaining coming-of-age comedy. Seth Rogan’s co-written script, mixed with his and Bill Hader’s hilarious characters, make for a stupidly fun time

Two Weeks Notice (2002)
Despite being drawn out and totally forgettable, this rom-com just about survives based purely on the entertaining pair at the helm. Bullock and Grant are always fun to watch together, even if their romance feels very forced 

Locke (2013)
Tom Hardy delivers a tour de force performance in this trapped psychological drama. Stuck in a car with only his phone, Ivan Locke has to wrangle his life from falling completely apart

Training Day (2001)
Denzel absolutely shines in this gripping cop thriller, but Ethan Hawke delivers an equally stunning performance. Antoine Fuqua directs a gritty and relentless thriller that, despite some minor scripting issues, still packs a real punch

ABBA: The Movie (1977)
While this movie isn’t going to convert any non-fans, those that do love them will adore the tongue-and-cheek romp that this movie presents. At once a great time capsule of their ‘77 Australian tour, and an entertainingly silly mockumentary 

Lord of War (2005)
A horribly dark but darkly entertaining satire examining the illegal arms trading that allows war to happen. Visually stunning and sporting another fantastic Nic Cage performance, only it’s slightly lacking narrative let it down

Before Midnight (2014)
A breathtaking finale to cinema’s most unassuming trilogy. Presenting a realistic vision of love and ageing, the performances of Delpy and Hawke and the direction of Linklater make for perhaps the most emotionally challenging edition of the trilogy

Bullet Train (2022)
Though the plot begins to wear thin by the end, David Leitch has packed this action comedy with just enough pop and fizz to drag it across the finishing line. Brad Pitt brings his usual charisma, and the comedy hits fast and often 

Predator (1987)
Comically macho but throughly enjoyable, this 80’s classic is a well shot and entertaining romp. The film is impressively bombastic, but sadly lacks the plot or enough motivation to drag itself through the runtime

Nope (2022)
Though Jordan Peele doesn’t quite score a hat-trick with his third film, he still remains as ambitious and metaphorical a filmmaker as ever. Though it gets lost in it’s own scope at times, Nope is a thoroughly intriguing and at times exhilarating affair. It’s also Peele’s best shot film to date thanks to stunning work by cinematographer Hoyte van Hoytema

Jerry Maguire (1996)
Though it occasionally stumbles between it’s two genres (sports drama and romantic comedy, this remains a fabulously charming and uplifting movie. The cast are all on top form, with Cruise and Zellweger displaying sparkling chemistry

The Master (2012)
An extraordinary experiential drama grounded by two of the greatest performances put on film. Joaquin Phoenix is a drunken WWII veteran who gets swept up by a Scientology-esque cult led by an incredible Philip Seymour Hoffman. Paul Thomas Anderson directs this intense drama to perfection

The Belles of St. Trinian’s (1954)
A passable anarchic British comedy, with an entertaining duel role from Alistair Sim. It lacks the punch it likely once did, and stumbles around its clunky plot, but it remains a charming watch

Bodies Bodies Bodies (2022)
An entertainingly ‘woke’ comedy horror film about a bunch of coked up friends getting murdered in a house. The cast and their chemistry are what makes this film really shine, with Rachel Sennott particularly shining

The Invitation (2022)
Though it revels in gothic horror entertainment, this film adds absolutely nothing to the vampire genre. With a weak story and an over-reliance on loud jump scares, this is an invitation you’re better off declining

Spider-Man 2 (2004)
Tonally, it’s all over the place, but my god is this movie so much fun. Alfred Molina is clearly having an absolute blast, and Tobey Maguire perfectly captures Peter Parker’s existential crisis in this action-packed sequel

Top Gun: Maverick (2022)
This was my fifth watch, that’s all you need to know

Planes, Trains and Automobiles (1987)
One of the funniest and most charming comedy movies ever made. Grounded by a superb double act from Steve Martin and John Candy, this film packs an astonishing amount of laughs and heart into 90minutes

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