10 Items Or Less (2006) was a joyful watch


I can vaguely remember this making a splash as an indie darling when it first came out, with the buzz being split between the marketing gimmick of Morgan Freeman doing something quirky and the marketing gimmick of being officially available online at the same time it was in the cinema. It got a reasonable amount of sofa-based interview TV, made some noise as “a touching, romantic comedy”, and then dropped out of view. So when we picked it for viewing, based mostly on the title but also because of Morgan Freeman, and had very little expectations as to what would happen next.
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The Undertake (1988) is underwhelming


Whilst this 1988 film has nothing to do with the most successful persona of Mark Calloway, of the great wrestlers of all time, it does have a lot of the hallmarks of professional wrestling of this era. Bad acting, weak camera, incredibly cheap tricks, a near-incomprehensible plotline, and the audience constantly having to work to maintain the willful suspension of disbelief are all on show here. The end result is something that is utterly unenjoyable as intended, and only marginally fun as a beguiling slice of bad cinema.
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The Howling VII: New Moon Rising (1995)

Also known as “Mysterious Woman”


Clive Turner had a decent run with The Howling series, writing producing, and acting in Rebirth and Original Nightmare and directing Original Nightmare, as well as being location manager for The Marsupials. New Moon Rising was his chance to break away from all the interference that had messed around with those previous works, to show what he could really do on his own. The end result was a testament to what he could do when left to his own devices and probably explains why no one let him be fully in charge before.
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The Howling V: The Rebirth (1989)


It’s the end of peak Howling, as we get to the end of a glorious run of a new straight-to-video release each year. And whilst it doesn’t have much in common with The Original Nightmare with regards tone, plot, or team behind it, we get a continuation in the demonic curse mythos. Not the same mythos, obviously, but it’s still a pleasant little connection. There also appears to be an increase in the budget, which lets this one really stretch its legs!
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The Strange Case Of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde (1968)

The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde has, over the 134 years since it was first published, earned its place as a work of horror fiction so ubiquitous within pop culture that most people know the basic story without having needed to read the book. However, unlike it’s more camera-friendly equals of Frankenstein or Dracula, it’s also one that an audience is unlikely to have seen on the big screen in anything like its original form. Modern world retellings, comedy twists (normally involving the perceived hilarity of a gender switch), and outright plot bastardization abound, to varying degrees of success (and If you must watch The Nutty Professor then for god’s sake make it the 1963 Jerry Lewis one!) Continue reading

Loki (2021) – Season One, Episode One “Glorious Purpose” Review

It’s another season of Marvel TV, so it’s time to go through the all-important mythos introductions with this first episode. In this case, the titular character is pretty straightforward as Loki (Tom Hiddleston) has been with us since his Marvel cinematic debut with Thor in 2011. He’s charming, arrogant, happy to knife anyone that gets in his way, and his helmet is still both utterly ridiculous and fashionably dashing. The only minor complication is that the Loki we have here is the defeated mischievous god at the end of Avengers Assemble, rather than the emotionally evolved one we saw die in Infinity War. But don’t worry about that, as this is just Marvel Universe 199999, introducing us to the fun multiverse shenanigans that Universe 616 has been dealing with for ages.
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Doom Patrol Season One (2019)

Doom Patrol is finally to be available for streaming in the UK, via the Amazon Prime sub-subscription service StarzPlay. So, after raving so hard about The Pilot at launch on DCUniverse (and then watching it all again on Blu-Ray), it was time to do the season review.

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The War Of The World, A Christmas Carol and Dracula (2019)

WARNING: This is a SPOILER HEAVY article that freely discusses plot points about books written over a century ago.


The principle of an adaptation is simple; take a book that has a built-in fanbase, transcribe it into a script though the extensive use of CTRL-C and CTRL-V, and pop out a bit of hit TV. Most of the actually hard work of creation, coming up with plot, characters and dialogue, has already been done, so all the production team really have to do is get the actors, sets, and costumes together. Right?
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Dead Pixels Season One

Two things are needed to make a good sitcom – a solid set of characters to either laugh at – or with – and a comprehensible reason for them all to be in a situation to let the jokes flow through. This is something that Dead Pixels manages to get very right, especially on the people-front as it has an intentionally minimal cast to work with.
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Love, Death & Robots Season 1


Anthologies are, by their very nature, a mixed bag, but Love, Death & Robots often feels like it’s an utterly random hodgepodge of stories and tones thrown together with no cohesive themes. To give you an idea, the first half opens with a solid 18-rated, by-the-numbers gore, and pseudo-sexy cyberpunk then skips to a charming little comedy about three robots taking a tour through the post-apocalypse, follows up with the way too long and far too exploitative Naked Woman Running In Terror sequence. It’s then on to a charming story of space farmers defending a homestead with mechs, tries to be serious with an 80s inspired Vampires vs Cats, hits another high note with a highly evocative social comedy about hyper-intelligent Yogurt and tails off with the double act of The Opening Of Aliens: Let’s Have Sex In Space, and Steampunk: Mystic Asia With Rich Europeans Being Terrible.
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