Review: Star Trek Beyond (2016)

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The third entry in the most recent Star Trek franchise, this time directed by Fast Five’s Justin Lin, recaptures some of the original series’ magic through its dedication to character and ridiculous fun. As scripted by Doug Jung and Simon Pegg (who carves himself out a more substantial role as Scotty), the narrative is messy, often dull in its midsection as Krall (Idris Elba), a ruthless enemy, destroys the USS Enterprise and captures the crew in an attempt to lay his hands on an artifact that will help wipe out the entire Federation. Continue reading “Review: Star Trek Beyond (2016)”

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Review: Absolutely Anything (2015)

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Absolutely Anything, dreamt up by the team behind Monty Python, is yet another poor excuse for a British comedy, set to do absolutely nothing for Simon Pegg’s career. Randomly selected by an alien council for an experiment to secure Earth’s survival, Neil (Pegg) is bestowed unique powers – powers that he quickly abuses. Continue reading “Review: Absolutely Anything (2015)”

Review: Man Up (2015)

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The rom-com has had a rough time in recent years, but Man Up – toplined by the intensely charming Lake Bell – proves there’s fire in the old belly yet. Unlucky in love, Nancy (Bell) inadvertently steals a date with Jack (Simon Pegg) when she’s mistaken as his blind date. The two embark upon a wild day in London that brings out the best and worst in them. Continue reading “Review: Man Up (2015)”

Review: Hector And The Search For Happiness (2014)

Hector2_glamour_19jun14_pr_b_426x284_zpsfc43648bSimon Pegg stumbles once more without partner in crime Nick Frost by his side with Hector And The Search For Happiness, a wretched excuse for a British comedy. Hector (Pegg), a well-to-do psychiatrist, leaves his perfect life and perfect other half (Rosamund Pike) behind in a bid to discover the true meaning of happiness. Directed by Peter Chelsom, who helped to adapt François Lelord source material, the film is a mostly insufferable travelogue that bears no resemblance to reality. Continue reading “Review: Hector And The Search For Happiness (2014)”

Review: Cuban Fury (2014)

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Built upon an original idea conceived by star and producer Nick Frost himself, Cuban Fury is a million miles away from the films Frost’s name has become synonymous with – and not solely because this one sees him dance. Yet thanks to his indomitable craft, the heart-warming, inspiring message at its core and its crowd-pleasing nature, the film is, by and large, a success, though not one that leaves a particularly lasting impression. Continue reading “Review: Cuban Fury (2014)”

Review: The World’s End (2013)

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Nine years after the release of Shaun Of The Dead, and five years after Hot Fuzz, The Three Flavours Cornetto trilogy draws to a sufficient, if unexceptional, close with The World’s End. Reuniting director Edgar Wright with stars Nick Frost and Simon Pegg, The World’s End is an amusing, heartwarming and nostalgia-filled comedy adventure that works well at the time, but leaves little to chew on once the end credits have rolled. Continue reading “Review: The World’s End (2013)”

Review: The Adventures Of Tintin: The Secret Of The Unicorn (2011)

An avid fan, and the sole person trusted by Hergé to adapt his comic books, Steven Spielberg joins forces with Peter Jackson to bring the iconic drawings to life through the art of motion capture: a method which both filmmakers believe unrivalled for representing the author’s bewitching world.

Combining elements from three of Hergé’s celebrated tales, The Adventures Of Tintin: The Secret Of The Unicorn centres on plucky newspaper reporter Tintin (Jamie Bell) and his attempts to find the treasure of Sir Francis Continue reading “Review: The Adventures Of Tintin: The Secret Of The Unicorn (2011)”

Review: Paul (2011)

Simon Pegg and Nick Frost reunite in yet another bromance buddy film, this time from director Greg Motolla.

Paul sees two best friends, Graeme (Pegg) and Clive (Frost) embark upon a tour of UFO landing sites after visiting Comic-Con in San Diego. Fleeing into the night after angering some aggressive rednecks, they have a chance encounter with Paul (Seth Rogen), a wise-cracking alien who implores them to take him with them before he gets dragged back to Area 51.

All too keen to indulge in a geek fantasy, the two nerds stash Paul in the back of their rented RV and attempt to return him to his landing site. But things don’t go quite according to plan when they accidentally kidnap a trailer park attendant (Kristen Wiig) and discover that they have an FBI agent on their trail (Jason Bateman).

For the most part, the story is solid. It impressively finds the right balance between road movie and alien flick, and results in an old fashioned, grand, amped-up final showdown.

Motolla’s direction, however, is all-too tame and demonstrates that a Pegg and Frost film is banal without their counterpart Edgar Wright. Mottola makes a commendable effort, but is clearly out of his comfort zone.

Pegg and Frost, even without Wright, put their real-life friendship to good use and create a likable duo, with naturally blowing, witty banter and individualistic personalities, enough to differentiate them from their previous on-screen personaes.

Seth Rogen proves to be a inspired choice for Paul, reminding audiences he is in fact a talented actor, and not the one hit wonder he was in danger of becoming. And Kristen Wiig, in her first mainstream film, shows off her natural comedic talent, getting her own fair share of laughs in amongst an already headstrong cast.

Jane Lynch and Sigourney Weaver, though awarded with limited screen time, both bring a remarkable sweet-wise quality to their respective roles, making you ache for more.

Paul is an adequately enlivening Saturday night movie, with gratifying gags, a savvy cast and enough sci-fi references to keep everyone happy.