I said I wanted to watch an ‘ordinary’ amount of films, and I think I achieved that this week.
It might be worth covering my film library mechanisms, so I can refer back to it if needed. I have four main sources for films – Netflix, Amazon Prime, Sky Cinema, and my DVD collection. These are all sources that are effectively instant access. When I know I have to or want to watch something that I don’t own I tend to search the others on a PC or on my phone, and add to the watch list on the relevant service. Very occasionally a film is on a regular TV channel but that sort of happenstance is rare.
Where a film isn’t available from these I turn to my secondary sources – charity shops, CEX, and digital rental. There are a number of charity shops that sell secondhand DVDs in the village I live in, so every so often I wander up one side of the high street and back down the other to seek something out. CEX is a UK secondhand trade in shop that quite often has things very cheap after they’ve been out a couple of years. In terms of digital rental I tend to use Amazon Video or Google Play.
And every so often I actually go to the cinema to watch a film. The next town over has an Odeon cinema which is actually quite nice. There’s an independent cinema in the town my family live in, and a Cineworld nearby that. I used to go to Picturehouse Clapham or Ritzy Brixton, and for special occasions I visit the Electric Cinema in Portobello Road, which is pretty much the best cinema I’ve ever been to.
Secret Origin: The Story of DC Comics
I watched this because the DVD of it came free with Batman: Assault on Arkham. It was an okay documentary, narrated by Ryan Reynolds (which must mean it was made around the release of Green Lantern). The insight into the actual creators of the original heroes and DC itself was really good, but when it got into the histories of the characters it was going over information most would know so it felt a little aimless.
The Nice Guys
I enjoy a good noir story, and when Nice Guys tried to do that it worked really well. The odd couple style pairing really did work, and both characters were well crafted. However they also tried to make this funny, but often by delivering an unusual juxtaposition between the situation and the reaction. At those times it worked less well. I could easily see this film having a follow-up which I’d be interested to check out.
Netflix recommended this to me because of a previous film, and the stellar cast lured me in to watch it. I recommend anyone else similarly tempted to trust their instinct that questions why they’ve not heard of a film with Tom Hanks, Patton Oswald, Emma Watson, John Boyega (and others). It wanted to be a mysterious tale of a dark possible future, but it never really embraced the darkness or where the plot could go, just looking at it in potentia without delivering. Black Mirror does this better, go watch that instead.
We’re covering this on PCD, and I’m always happy to watch The Incredibles. Whilst it’s a superhero film which is still such a major genre, it’s stylistically, narratively, and generally done in a more capable fashion than most others.
I will admit I have owned this for several months since Sky gave me a free purchase from their store. I was very keen to receive it but then it took an age to come and I never made time once I had it. But that is my error – this is a really good film. Very cleverly creating a sense of tension and oddness to the events, with incredibly confident performances from every member of its cast.
We watched this for ATAV so you can check out that podcast now if you want. I loved this film when it came out, which explains why I own it, and
As good as The Incredibles is, I think Get Out might be my recommendation just for something a bit different and with a perspective that works so fully throughout.