The Grinch Review

It was with some trepidation

that I approached the latest offering from Illumination

(Those who unleashed those infernal minions upon every poor, blighted nation)

mediocrity is their stock in trade

so, through that is what I expected to wade.

“But”, said a voice inside my head

Your optimism should not need to be be dead.

After all, this film should be a sinch

pretty much everyone knows the story of The Grinch

It’s been made as a film twice before

and only one of those was a colossal bore

starring an unleashed Jim Carrey

and Who’s that veered between creepy and scary.

It was dull and grimy, padded to no end

and watching it again almost sent me around the bend.

But this is new and shiny and nice.

It’s also in 3d which for someone, somewhere is nice.

It stars Sherlock Holmes, Angela Lansbury and more.

wanting trained voice actors? What a bore!

And stepping into the role of narrator,

played by Boris karloff and Hannibal Lector, who could be greater

Than Pharrell Williams (who made that song happy)

Although as narator he’s really quite sappy.

Giving Danny Elfman the score is a decision I adore

but getting someone called Tyler, the Creator to make a Grinchy rap song?

Whoever decided that will have a career that’s not long.

And who the hell decided to put in the Christmas rap from Die Hard?

I have questions which I don’t know I want answered.

But leaving weird, random music choices aside,

there’s some stuff here of which illumination could almost feel pride.

At 86 minutes, the run-time is nearly perfect.

So that box is most defiantly checked.

It’s so bright and breezy,

that I don’t feel uneasy

about saying that a few times I chuckled

but at times my cheer buckled

because at points my own heart grew at least a half size!

The key stories still there

so please don’t despair

when the film takes a quick detour

Because what little this film adds means more

than the Carrey version did before.

And with a run-time far less than that 106 minute bore.

{Doing this review in rhyme

seemed like such a good idea at the time

still, it won’t be the first that a pub was the start point for a crime)

So i’m told anyway.

But if dragged to this film don’t pray.

There are far worse ways to spend part of the day.

It’s animation is fluid, no moment was bad,

The heart wringing moments made me feel sad.

I laughed at it’s jokes

and it never provokes

any rude or crude moments as it’s rating is U!

The perfect rating for a film by Dr Seuss it’s true.

So as I come to my end,

this film will not drive you round the bend.

On the 1966 original it’s not a patch.

but as a cash-grab it’s not that much of a snatch.

Illumination you’ve done it again!

90 minutes of beige to keep the kids quiet

so if you want to prevent a riot

There’s worse you could see

but take it from me

it has no plans to stay long in your head

And you’ll forget it’s small charms before you lay down in bed.

My Score – If Nothing Else

The great ITV shutdown 

So, something Olympic related has happened and I’m not sure whether to be mildly impressed or mildly patronized.

For those of you who have been living under a rock, the Olympics has just happened in Brazil and the United Kingdom (possibly for the last time) managed to come second in the overall medal table behind the USA.
And this has lead to the traditional, futile,  effort to convince the great British public to actually leave the house for once. Except this year they’ve managed receive some assistance from an unexpected corner.

ITV, the large commercial TV company in the United Kingdom will turn off all seven of its stations for one hour. And I don’t mean showing adverts for gyms and Spartan races I mean a black screen with the text “we’ve gone running – why don’t you join us?”

And whilst I appreciate the thought, I’m just not sure it’s going to work. First off the whole ‘olympic legacy’ just doesn’t work. Since London 2012, 400’000 people that were doing grassroots sport are no longer doing so.
And I’m fairly certain that depriving people of Murder She Wrote and Coronation Street isn’t going to do anything.

But hey, everythings worth a try right?  As long as ITV comes back on in time for Live and Let Die.

What do you guys think?

Jessica Jones Series Review

After Daredevil it’s pretty fair to say that expectations for this series were pretty high. Even as I write this, IMDB considers it the 94th greatest TV show ever. (Band of Brothers is number one if your interested.)

And yet, I wasn’t that impressed with it.

It’s a very good TV show, don’t get me wrong. Well shot, acted, I liked the way it felt like a film noir (with genre appropriate soundtrack). But towards the end there was a definite sense of “Lets finish this” More than “I can’t wait to see what happens!”

Part of it, was that there were way too many characters to keep track off, some of which could happily have been disposed of or removed with no effect to the story. Also, David Tennant is criminally underused as  Killgrave/The Purple Man a mind controlling villain who has no real ultimate evil plan and at times seems more like a petulant child than a legitimate threat.

Yes, the Marvel “Curse Of The Useless Villain” strikes again. Killgrave doesn’t seem to really have a plan beyond “Act like a jerk” and whilst that’s fine in small doses,after thirteen episodes it does start to grate. A secondary villain or even a threat that only lasted for one episode would have been welcome.

The tone is unrelentingly bleak, almost every character (save Tennant who is clearly having a blast) ends up depressed, compromised, or dead. There’s no light relief character like Foggy in Daredevil and I feel that that was a missed trick.

The actions scenes are well shot but all too brief, however, as Jessica and her allies possess super strength and are only ever up against normal humans then there is little tension or excitement in them.

I must commend the series for its depiction of PTSD, as well at demonstrating the way that Killgraves victims react to having their minds and bodies violated at the whim of a maniac.

But overall, the series seems small, the stakes low and there’s no sense of things coming to a head in the final few episodes.

I did find it slightly confusing mid-season when the show turns into a grotesque parody of a ’50’s sitcom which to me smelt like padding .

Whilst still a high quality series, I feel this represents a slight dip in Netflix’s usual high quality output.

My Score- See It