An old man is angry, and Jared is sad

You know who doesn’t like Marvel movies? Old white guys who were popular in the 80’s. Does it matter that Martin Scorsese and Francis Ford Coppola don’t like the Marvel films? Not even a little bit. But journalists seem to be loving the easy story of “person not in target audience doesn’t care for ____”. 

I saw a tweet mentioning that they haven’t criticised those who created the blockbuster genre, probably because they’re mates with Steven Spielberg and George Lucas. They’re older gentlemen being asked about something they’re not attached to in the way I am, but I am 50 years their junior. Times change, old men don’t. I have already written about Scorsese’s comments, and as much as you must respect both him and Coppola for their work, you don’t have to agree with their opinion, or anyone else’s.

Coppola’s comments have reminded me of a quote from Grandpa Simpson. “I used to be with it, then they changed what it was, and now what’s it is weird and scary to me”. It’s odd how much that applies here, the guys who made the Mobsters movies everyone watched in the 80’s don’t like the new hot thang in the 2010’s.

It isn’t just old white guys complaining though, there is also a younger, baby faced white guy complaining. Now I am biased, I enjoy 30 Seconds to Mars and Jared Leto was a man crush for a bit. As much as it is painful to say this, it appears he’s been a bit of a prick. If the stories are true, he threw a massive tantrum upon hearing the news that Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker film was given the green light. The story is he called his agents and demanded they contact Warner Bros and try to get the film cancelled.

Of course, it didn’t work, and someone just had to pick up all his toys and put them back in his pram. He’s an actor, who went deep into a character that unfortunately didn’t work for audiences. Warner Bros were apparently unhappy with his conduct on set, with him actively trying to freak out his co-stars. I understand some actors feel compelled to be super “method” about every role, but I am not sure we’ve ever seen an actor go this deep in a role that nobody really enjoyed.

As I mentioned, I like Jared Leto as a performer, and it’s well documented that I love the Joker character, what Leto has done here is confuse that character for his own private property. He was hired to play the Joker, he did so. Now someone else is playing the same character in a film completely disconnected from the DC universe as far as we know. If Leto had been a hit, and everyone had loved Suicide Squad and his role in it was lauded as another great Joker, the likelihood is we would never have seen Joaquin Phoenix put on the clown make up.

It didn’t work, we probably won’t see him as the tattooed joker again and frankly Jared Leto needs to grow up and get over it. He’s a man in his 40’s acting like a petulant child because he was told it was his turn and he didn’t have enough fun on his turn and now it’s someone else’s turn, and Jared isn’t happy about it.

If all the rumours are false, all is forgiven and a massive F you will go out to the journalists who reported it as fact. I have a feeling it isn’t false and its sort of ruined Jared Leto for me. Him thinking he has any ownership over a character that has been around longer than he has make’s him seem like a twat. I will still watch his films, and when I am next driving around with my friend Emma and she finally decides to listen to more than the first 3 seconds of a song, I will sing along to every word of “Attack” by 30 Seconds to Mars as if he isn’t a man child.

Hopefully tomorrow I have something more uplifting to write about! Well I know I will. There will be a new Star Wars trailer. Here’s hoping for more hints of Big Papa Palpatine.

‘Til Tomorrow.

ChAzJS

Joker Review

The Joker is a character I have been fascinated with for as long as I can remember. I loved the Mark Hamill version in the animated show and Jack Nicholson in Batman 89 was terrifying when I was a child. Jared Leto showed an example of how different the character can be and of course Heath Ledger delivered the most incredible performance we have seen in any comic book movie role. That is until now. 

Joker stars Joaquin Phoenix as Arthur Fleck and it’s 99% him. He is front and centre very much like the films that very clearly inspired this one. Phoenix uses the opportunity to display just how incredible one man’s performance can be, and he transforms into the character of Arthur Fleck. When you have an actor with this talent in a role with this much complexity to it you always have a chance for something special.

Hangover director Todd Phillips is at the helm for this one, and it seems he and all the rest of the people involved in this production realised what they had. Phoenix is given the film and carries it completely on his shoulders. Zazie Beetz, Robert De Niro, Brett Cullen and Frances Conroy play the other characters and are all good, but they are all there to add to the journey Arthur Fleck is experiencing.

There will be inevitable comparisons with Heath Ledger, and I fully understand that’s going to happen. I have said consistently, and it remains true even after this film, that The Dark Knight is my favourite movie. That is almost entirely down to Heath Ledgers Joker.

Part of the appeal of the Joker is that he doesn’t have a clear origin, it’s always a little unclear. This film tries to tackle how a character like the joker could be created in a real world. The 70’s setting not only allows for some great style and production design touches, but also gives the film the same style as the films of that decade. I have recently watched Taxi Driver, and Joker takes a lot of inspiration in a very unsubtle way. The comparisons with past eras of movies doesn’t end there with Falling Down and King of Comedy also being clear heavy influences.

As I have not seen those two films, I didn’t suffer from what I have seen a few people complain about with regards to the films handling of the references and inspirations it takes from those films. I have heard that a lot of this film isn’t particularly original, but I think the originality comes from this being a comic book film unlike any other we have seen before. Yes, we have seen films about terrible people before, but never have we seen a realistic depiction of someone’s slide into becoming the Joker.

How the film handles that transformation is particularly interesting to me, and some of the dialogue in the final act. Mental illness has had a stigma attached to it forever, and even today it’s often misunderstood by society. This film is brash with its messaging, and it makes a clear statement about how important it is to support people with mental illnesses. Arthur Fleck is completely detached from the reality the rest of the world lives in, and its reflected particularly well during the stand-up comedy scenes in the film.

There’s been a lot of controversy around the film in terms of how violent it is, and frankly I find that all to be ridiculous. I have seen more gratuitous violence in every single Tarantino movie, both Deadpool films, and endless amounts of horror films. The violence in this movie is impactful, and it’s all in the context of the film. At no point is any statement made about guns, it’s not the focus in any way. The focus is on the mental illness, and how letting it go unchecked can lead to terrible consequences. It’s highlighting how the downtrodden can feel neglected and unimportant to the people with power and status.

My biggest criticism of the film is it’s handling of the messaging. I personally don’t find The Hangover movies to be that funny because they’re brash and the jokes fall flat for me, and that same brush is being used here but this time it’s being used to paint a different type of story. Joker provokes a lot of thought, it’s a film that stays with you and it forces you to think about uncomfortable, difficult subjects. I suppose in a way, a more subtle approach wouldn’t have the conversation going quite so ferociously in my own mind as this film has managed to do.

In all honestly, Joker is not an entertaining film. It’s a slow burn to start with, and it has a lot of scenes that will make you squirm uncomfortably and begin to make you think you’re being sympathetic to the character of Arthur Fleck. The film shows how tragic events can affect someone’s life and spins that into an origin for an extremely twisted and dark character, and it achieves that goal very well. If you prefer your movies to have redemption or light-hearted fun, steer well clear of Joker. This is the furthest thing you could get from a Marvel film, and yet there were moments which made the geeky side of me just as gleeful as the ThunderCap moment in Avengers Endgame.

Joker is a rare film that will start a conversation about topics that are very rarely brought up in everyday life, but ones that perhaps should be. That ability to start a conversation is a sign of a very good film in my opinion.

Good: Joaquin Phoenix should win the Oscar this year, I will be astounded if anyone can top this performance. Production design, the score and soundtrack are all top notch as well.

Bad: Even if the messages it’s trying to convey are important topics for us to think about, the film has all the subtlety of a brick to the face.

9/10 – I never thought I’d say this after Heath Ledger, but this is the best Joker ever. 

 

 

Why you need to watch more YouTube and does Star Wars still hold up?

I write almost entirely about Video Games and Movies, with the occasional TV show dropped in. It gives me a lot to write about, and I love all three mediums of entertainment equally. There is one thing I have not written about, and it’s the one that motivated me to start a blog, which led to this site, which will lead to whatever the next thing will be for me. That platform is YouTube. 

YouTube is a lot of different things to a lot of different people. Some people use it to discover new music. Others use it to educate themselves using the endless hours of videos on any topic you could wish to learn about. For me, way back in 2013, it was almost entirely for stupid fail compilations and the occasional music video. Then I happened to discover AMC Movie Talk around the time when Man of Steel came out. It was the first time I discovered this area of the internet. This group of people sitting in a studio, discussing the latest movie news and releases in depth, all bringing their own opinions to the table.

Before too long, it had become a part of my every day, listening to the latest news stories and the crew’s views was just a part of my routine. AMC Movie Talk eventually became Collider Movie Talk. New shows were created, offering deeper dives into the news stories into their own areas. Collider Heroes covered all the superhero genre in more detail, Jedi Council took the hype surrounding the new Star Wars films to new heights and I was spending hours of my week listening to these people.

Since then YouTube has become as common as Netflix or Amazon Prime for me. If you still think of YouTube as that place you can go for cat videos, it really is so much more than that now. It’s a platform with more variety than any other and there is something for whatever is taking your fancy. I do not have any terrestrial TV channels set up in my flat, I watch so many pop culture news shows and comedic content on the platform I don’t know when I would ever use the normal channels.

One thing I found on YouTube recently was a comparison of all the changes made to the original Star Wars film. I recently posted about all the Star Wars prequels and have been toying with the idea of going back and watching the original trilogy again. I have been surprised with the worry I feel going into watching these old films. In my head when I think about them, I remember them being near perfect. I have never watched them with a more critical eye, and my worry is they may not hold up as well as they do in my head.

Last night I watched the first 30 minutes of A New Hope and was surprised how well it plays now. There are some odd choices, for instance Luke’s Aunt is dressed like Marie from Everybody Loves Raymond, but the characters and the plot are still there, still strong. I am going to finish it off this weekend and that will be a post next week. I can’t finish it sooner though, as tonight I am off to see Joker.

A lot of the reviews and talk about the film is very intriguing to me. Regardless of its people enjoyed the film, it is sparking so many interesting conversations about what the film means and why certain things happen. To me, that is the sign of a masterpiece, it gets people talking. My expectations are in a weird place, I am not expecting to enjoy watching this. I think it’s going to be an uncomfortable film to watch.

I might post the review tomorrow, I have kept weekends free, but I have a feeling I am going to want to write about this film as soon as I have processed my thoughts on it. I can’t wait.

Have a great weekend.

ChAzJS

 

The State of DC

Yesterday I saw a poster released for the upcoming “Birds of Prey” movie and was reminded that the film is a thing, and that DC’s Joker film isn’t the only project they have in the pipeline. On top of Birds of Prey, they have Wonder Woman 1984 and a reboot of sorts to the Suicide Squad franchise, with a Batman reboot somewhere as well. 

They have previously dropped Man of Steel, where they gave us an awesome Superman in Henry Cavill. The fact there was no real structure around his film to build a wider universe on didn’t put off the executives from wanting to have their own Cinematic Universe based on it, and the leaderless DCEU was born. Batman V Superman, Suicide Squad, Wonder Woman and Justice League followed to varying degrees of success, before Shazam and Aquaman sort of steadied the ship by being very okay.

Crucially, they botched Batman V Superman, and Suicide Squad was a colourful mess. Fun to look at but no real substance to it, DC had fumbled the ball. This was all happening in a time when Marvel was building towards Infinity war and in the same year as Justice League, released Guardians 2, Spiderman Homecoming and Thor Ragnarok.

If done right in with the state of pop culture today, Justice League should be the biggest film in the world. It should be earning billions. It earned $657 million. That’s on a hefty budget for both production and marketing, meaning they earned very little on their biggest film. for context, all three of the marvel films earned around $200 million more than that, on smaller budgets.

This sent Warner Bros and DC into a panic of green lighting and then cancelling and delaying and re organising and just generally in a tizzy trying to figure out what went wrong. Well I could write forever on what went wrong, and I probably will one day, but I am wondering if they’re finally organised, or if they are still spinning out of control.

They have Joker releasing in a few weeks’ time, and it appears it is going to be a critical darling and a huge success in terms of quality, Box office will probably be decent if not spectacular. I have written about that film enough; I am excited and hopefully is a sign of DC allowing the film makers they hire to take their properties and make something they want with them rather than the designed by committee feel Justice League had.

Following that we have Birds of Prey coming out next February, starring Margot Robbie reprising her role as Harley Quinn. She was one of the better parts of Suicide Squad, and I am glad they kept a talent like her, but I have no idea what this film is. Harley Quinn without the joker took years in the comics, and here we have her already out on her own, with Jared Leto’s Joker nowhere to be seen from what I can tell. I am guessing a trailer isn’t far off, so perhaps by the next time I write I will have some idea what this film’s going to be. The lead is talented, and Ewan McGregor is in it as the antagonist, so the tools are there for a solid movie, I just have no idea what to expect.

Next June is the most hopeful I am for DC, as Wonder Woman 1984 hits theatres. The first film was good. Gal Gadot has been the shining light for DC and it seems like they’re positioning her at the centre of their universe, if there is still a universe. The poster for this film is a piece of art, and if the film can build on the success of the first, we could be on for a great film.

Beyond that, we have a Batman reboot. The reign of Batfleck is over, and to be honest I was disappointed Ben Affleck never got to show what he could do with the character in a solo film. He has immense talent for directing and acting, and I can’t help but feel it was a wasted opportunity not utilising those while they had him there. Robert Pattinson has taken on the mantle, and Matt Reeves is directing. Reeves directed the two most recent Planet of the Apes films, which were both fun and serious action films. That style and tone could translate well to a Batman flick, so here’s hoping for a return to form for the character.

After that there is a myriad of films slated, James Gunn is making a Suicide Squad movie, which sounds incredible quite frankly. What he did with Guardians of the Galaxy means I will watch anything he touches now. Shazam and Aquaman are both set for sequels, The Flash movie has been in development for years, The Rock was announced as playing Black Adam years ago but so far there’s been no sign of that, and then we have a potential Batgirl film. Oh, and a horror film called The Trench, based on the trench Aquaman dives down in his solo film.

All these individual films sound fun, what’s missing is any obvious connecting tissue. I am assuming that the plan is still to build a Universe that can eventually lead to another Justice League film. Right now, there is no team up movie to connect everything together in the pipeline, and maybe that is intentional. Perhaps they want to focus on the current slate and get each individual character’s film right before trying to bring them together. It was rushed before, that much is obvious, and in their haste to catch up to Marvel they tripped and fell on their faces.

I genuinely hope that all these upcoming films shock me and are brilliant, my fear is that so far, they haven’t made a single film that’s been there for me. They do have a chance now though, especially with Marvel having essentially capped off their MCU for the time being and will be focusing on new characters and ones we haven’t quite got the same connection to like Dr Strange. They’ve lost Iron Man and Cap, the heads of the MCU, and Spiderman is unlikely to be returning.

DC have all their toys, they have time, and they could step up and be the next big franchise. Here’s hoping they can get it right this time.

ChAzJS

 

De Good, De Bad, and De Niro

How on earth Arsenal didn’t win the North London Derby is beyond me. We dominated spurs (although you wouldn’t think so from the Match of the Day highlights) but a mixture or Hugo Lloris heroics and poor decisions in the final third ruined my plans to enter the office this morning wearing Arsenal’s beautiful bruised banana kit. 

In order to get over this frustration, I decided to settle down and watch Taxi Driver. A film about a man slowly going insane, which is a rather perfect reflection of what being a football fan is like.  The film itself is one of many classic films that I haven’t watched previously, so I was also just excited to watch what is considered by many to be a very good film.

I have to say it’s one of the first movies from the 70’s that I have been able to sit through without being put off by the visuals. Movies from that time are obviously not quite the same as the 4k beautiful shots we are used to now, and for some reason that just feels a little off to me if the film doesn’t grab me. Once Taxi Driver gets going though, I understood why this film is so revered. The performance of Robert De Niro is incredible, and he becomes the character of Travis Bickle. Nowadays, De Niro is a hugely respected actor whose most well-known roll is the dad in the Meet the Parents films, so it was awesome to watch the film where he earned all that respect.

I know he is also in The Godfather Part II, but I haven’t been able to bring myself to watch that since I watched the original Godfather film. That first film contains so many amazing elements, but I think the style of film making at the time and the way the industry has evolved make it a very tough film to get through. It’s just two minutes shy of three hours long, but when you’re used to the speed of today’s films, it feels so slow.

The film lingers on a shot for 10-15 seconds, to immerse you in the scene, which is an understandable tact to take, but to me it just feels like the editing is poor. This is not true of course; at the time this is how films were made. When you’re used to the quite cuts and fast progression between scenes we have now, The Godfather feels like a slow trudge through the story which could be shortened but maybe 40 minutes by a skilled modern editor without losing too much. Maybe this is blasphemous to some movie aficionados out there, but I would watch a modern edit of the Godfather in a heartbeat over the original, if it contained the same story and showcased the performance of Marlon Brando.

Given my discomfort watching older films, you may wonder what drove me to watch Taxi Driver last night. Well perhaps predictably it was the Joker. The first reviews for the new Joaquin Phoenix led film dropped to my, and a lot of other peoples, surprise over the weekend. For context, this film is still, even today, a full month away from release. Letting people put up their reviews this early is a show of brazen confidence very rarely seen in the movie industry and suggests Warner Bros know exactly what they have with this movie.

By all accounts, what they have is an absolute masterpiece. Reviews from the people I follow have been praising this film’s style and story, but all the main comments are about how brilliant Joaquin Phoenix is in the role of the Joker. I mentioned last week how excited I was to see this flick, but now I want to go into a coma and wake up on release date as there is just nothing else, I would rather do with my time then see this film.

Phoenix is one of the most talented actors around, so I knew there was a chance of something special when you have someone that talented commit to this character. The film is apparently 99% Joaquin Phoenix, as in he is in every shot. That is exactly what you want from a movie about a character so complex. Watching Taxi Driver last night, I started to understand why this type of film was an inspiration. It’s focused completely on De Niro’s Travis Bickle, just as Joker is front and centre of his film. The way it follows his decent into insanity is expertly done in Taxi Driver, so to know this kind of attention to detail is there in the Joker film really puts this top of my most anticipated list.

Another reason for Joker now topping my anticipated list, even over The Rise of Skywalker, is the comparison’s it’s getting to my favourite movie of all time, The Dark Knight. Any Joker performance from now until the end of time will be compared to Heath Ledger’s amazing work in The Dark Knight, so this one is no different. Where this might differ from the rest of Joker actors though, is that Phoenix is being touted as delivering an even better performance.

Time will tell if I agree with that assessment, but I do need to spend the next month trying to forget about the film. I want to go in with no heavy expectations on the film so I can enjoy it as much as possible.

If Arsenal would have lost yesterday, I think I may well have begun my own Travis Bickle like descent into madness. Mkhitaryan needs to get to fuck. Comes on and runs around like a headless chicken with the touch of Romelu Lukaku. Not to mention Superman lookalike Granit-for-brains Xhaka. Spent 90 minutes on the pitch, launching himself at the Spurs players arse first and then acting surprised it didn’t work. Thank fuck for Aubameyang, Lacazette and Guendouzi.

I promise I will have cooled off on the Arsenal stuff by tomorrow.

‘Til Then!

ChAzJS

 

Jokers, Offended People and The Nine Nine (9-9!)

Yesterday lunch time I watched through a new comedy special that had just hit Netflix. It was the latest effort from well renown comedian Dave Chappelle, someone I know of, but have never watched. I had no idea what to expect but I found it to be funny, not mind blowing but alright.

A lot of comedians aim their jokes at socially taboo topics like the LGBT community or different classes, and Chappelle does exactly that and even takes aim at the Michael Jackson scandal. This has predictably led to a lot of varied reaction on the internet. Who would have thought it, people are offended on the internet.

Personally, I am not offended by any jokes, because they’re jokes. As far as I am concerned when you buy a ticket and sit down for a comedy show, everything is okay to make fun of, because that is why you’re there. Stand-up comedy is the place where it should be okay to make the jokes that aren’t as acceptable in a social situation. Within the realm of streaming services like Netflix, you have the choice of hundreds of comedy specials and you can watch them as and when you please.

It’s pretty obvious from the first five minutes of Dave Chappelle’s stand up that it’s going to be hitting pretty hard. Dave goes straight in with satirical commentary on Anthony Bourdain’s suicide and making light of suicidal thoughts. If you watch that part and you laugh, sit back and enjoy the rest of the show. At times it seems like he is saying things for shock value, but there are some funny bits in there.

However, if you click on this like me, with no real idea of what Dave Chappelle’s comedy is like, and then instead of enjoying it, you find the first five minutes to not be funny at all, turn it the fuck off. Its 2019, its on Netflix, you have complete control over what you are watching. press back, find something else. Jump over to Amazon, or Now TV, or HBO, or any of the hundreds of cable TV channels.

I understand not everyone is like me, some people are sensitive to topics and they choose to be offended when comedians make jokes about those things. If that’s how you are, that is completely fine, but take some responsibility and manage your own viewing habits. If you get a few minutes into a stand up special, get that hint of it not being to your taste, and then sit there for another hour and listen to more things you find offensive, that is simply not the comedian’s fault. It’s your fault for watching it when you knew it wasn’t for you. Nothing is made to please everyone.

On the subject of comedians, but this time a fictional, failing comedian, the final trailer for Todd Phillips’ Joker movie dropped last night. As I have mentioned several times on this site, I absolutely adore the character of the Joker. He is my favourite fictional character, The Dark Knight is my favourite movie, Mark Hamill’s Joker voiced my childhood watching Batman the Animated Series et cetera.

So, this new dark and gritty Joker origin story should be right up my street, right? Well it’s not a surprise at all that I am absolutely all in for this movie. Joaquin Phoenix is a phenomenally talented actor, and all signs point to this performance earning him some Awards buzz. It’s quite validating as a big Joker fan that the character has now drawn Oscar level performances out of two actors.

The trailers slow build, the imagery and the hints of the character descent into madness is exactly what I want to see from a film like this, and the recently announced R rating for the film says to me that they are not going to be pulling any punches and will be letting The Joker go full crazy in the later parts of the film.

The main concern I have for this movie is the lack of batman. A lot of Jokers best moments in his long history have relied upon him playing with Batman’s mind and manipulating the people he cares about. Without that element to play with, I am intrigued what kind of story they’re going to tell.

Onto a more light-hearted topic, lately I have been watching through Brooklyn 99 again. My word what a stupidly funny show it is. If you have never watched it, treat yo’ self and watch a couple of episodes. It’s perfect for having on in the background whilst doing something else like writing a blog. It’s so consistent that every time you pause to watch for a minute or two, you find yourself laughing at something. Andre Braugher as Raymond Holt is simply incredible. He is the ultimate comedic straight man, whilst the others around him, particularly Andy Samberg’s Jake Peralta, are constantly making quips and one liner’s.

I feared a second watch through might cause the humour to grow a little stale, but it doesn’t. I have just garnered a new appreciation for some of the other elements of the show like Hitchcock and Scully. It reminds me of the US version of The Office in that although the situations are sometimes quite funny in themselves, often it’s the characters you grow to appreciate, and you just want to see more of them living their lives.

There we have it, the second daily blog post done. Yesterday I did this 6am wake up to write thing for the first time and felt great about myself. Then I got up from my desk, strolled happily towards the bathroom only to smash my knee on the corner of my bed and yelp in agony.

So, I am off to avoid hard, sharp corners that live at knee height, and you should too. Til tomorrow!

ChAzJS

 

 

My Most Anticipated Movies 2019

I don’t know if everyone feels this, but one of the things I love the most about movies is the anticipation. Wondering about what surprises might happen, which characters I’m going to love or hate, and just whether or not any movie is going to be good or bad for me. Of course I am excited for the likes of Avengers Endgame and Star Wars Episode IX, but so is everyone else. With that in mind, here are a few of the films I am most excited to see in 2019 that aren’t huge blockbusters. 

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood – 9th August (UK)

Boasting arguably the most talented cast in history with Leonardo DiCaprio, Brad Pitt Margot Robbie, Al Pacino and Kurt Russell, it is none of those names that really make me want to see this film. The name that does that, is Quentin Tarantino. I love every movie that I have seen of his (there are a few I haven’t watched) and a late 60s hollywood setting matched with all of Tarantino’s style and sensibilities sounds like a match made in heaven.

His particular brand of dialogue and the creative characters he puts into his films in the hands of such an incredibly talented cast just add to the anticipation for me. I know barely anything about this film beyond what I have put in this post and it is still easily one of my most anticipated films of the year. Releasing at the height of the blockbuster season, I really hope this gem isn’t buried by the superhero films out around then.

Joker – 4th October (US, UK Unconfirmed)

If you know me well, you will already know why this film is so high on my list. The Joker is my favourite fictional character across all mediums, so a movie based on him with a talent like Joaquin Phoenix in the role is tantalising. Early set photos show Phoenix looking suitably creepy as the maniacal villain, looking like a mix of the classic Caesar Romero look blended with Heath Ledger’s iconic turn in the role.

The Hangover director Todd Phillips is in charge of things, and that is my main concern with the film. None of his films really wow me, but none of them are terrible, he’s a very middle of the road director for a project i really want to see succeed. If he can take a few pointers from Martin Scorsese, who is on as a Producer for this film, i really think this could be something special.

The Lion King – 19th July (UK) 

Now this is a very interesting film to me. The animated classic from the 90s is my favourite Disney film, I watched it 100s of times as a kid, and it was a film I hoped would not be made before I saw the Jungle Book remake. However, in a post Jungle Book world, and with the astounding cast of voices on board under the same director (Jon Favreau), I am now all in to see this film. The special effects are brilliant, that goes without saying, but what will make or break The Lion King for me is the characters being as lovable and memorable as they was in 1994.

I never had this attachment to the Jungle Book, so this is new ground for me. I am going into a film hoping it is exactly the same as one I have seen before, but with a new lick of paint and some shiny new accessories. Whatever the end product is like, I am sure me and my generation will be pushing small kids out the way on opening day to sing along to Hakuna Matata in a theatre together come July. If it’s a success, we will be back in for the next showing.

Rocketman – 21 June (UK) 

In 2018, Bohemian Rhapsody gave Queen fans (i.e. Everyone) a chance to relive the past with Freddie Mercury leading Queen through their songs, whilst giving a glimpse behind the curtain at the life the legendary frontman led. In 2019, Rocketman aims to deliver the same experience, but with Elton John. His career spans several decades and his music traverses multiple Genres just like Queen, and he too has a story not everyone knows about. I am in that section of people, so I’m fascinated to learn about the man behind the music.

Dexter Fletcher is directing, whose work I have never seen, but I heard good things about Eddie the Eagle, hopefully this gives him the step up he needs to reach the next level as a director. Kingsman lead man Taron Egerton takes on the role of Elton John, and I really hope he nails this and maybe even generates himself some award buzz.

There are lots more of course, with Disney alone boasting Toy Story 4, Dumbo, Aladdin, Captain Marvel, Spiderman Far from Home and Frozen 2 on top of Star Wars and Avengers, it promises to be a huge year in cinema. Google 2019 films to see a lot of the films coming our way in the next 12 months, and there are certainly some we haven’t even heard of yet. The blog will be more active than ever this year so thank you for reading and please share if you think anyone you know will want to waste their time reading this! Til next time 🙂