Spider-man Once More

The recently released, first official photo of Andrew Garfield as a battered and bruised web-slinger has sent net buzz into overdrive well over a year before the film’s tentative release date.

Black and blue... and red

As it’s been a while since I’ve geeked out in public and written something entirely speculative and unfounded I thought I’d indulge myself by attempting to answer the question; can the new Spider-man be better than the last?
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127 Hours

With it being almost two years since Slumdog Millionaire cleaned up at the Academy Awards it is surely about time for the Danny Boyle backlash to begin. Sadly for those out there who love to hate, you are going to have to hang on at least two more years in the hopes that everyone’s favourite Mancunian Oscar winner fucks up the Olympic opening ceremony. The reason for this delay is of course Boyle’s latest film 127 Hours which, I’m pleased to say exceeded my already high expectations in every way.

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Mr. Swift’s Top Ten of Twenty Ten

I should point out that for the purpose of this list I’m only including films with a 2010 UK release date as shown on the one and only Internet Movie Database.

10 The Social Network (15/10/10)
I will no doubt come in for some grief placing Fincher’s Facebook movie at the lowest possible point of my top ten but bare in my mind, I’ve watched a lot of films this year so tenth spot is by no means an indictment. Whilst I may not have been entirely on board the Social Network bandwagon I was not blind to its many qualities. Sorkin’s script is as fast paced and nuanced as his seminal tenure on The West Wing and his dialogue is expertly delivered by the likes of Jesse Eisenberg and Andrew Garfield. What prevented the film from creeping up my list was in its unnerving levels of hypocrisy. Facebook founder Zuckerberg is openly condemned for his plans to compare girls with farm animals yet apparently the entry requirements for Harvard girls of the nineties was ‘Must look good in pants’. Sorkin has himself issued an apology for the depiction of girls but sadly that doesn’t make it any less uncomfortable viewing.
Jesse Eisenberg as Mark Zuckerberg

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The King’s Speech

There are many reasons to hate Colin Firth. One, regardless of your age, there is a strong possibility that he features on your Girlfriend/Partners/Spouses laminated ‘celebrity exceptions list’. Two, he looks better than you in a Christmas jumper. Three, annoyingly, he’s just that fucking good. Sadly I missed last year’s A Single Man at the cinema however; I did manage to catch the film on a long haul flight. Despite the less than ideal viewing circumstances I quickly found myself immersed in a film driven by what, on another year, could easily have been deemed Oscar worthy. Not satisfied with one career defining performance in the past year or so, Firth is returning to cinema screens in the buzz worthy The King’s Speech and yet again, he is unquestionabley deserving of the high praise currently being lavished upon him.

Colin and Mike

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The Chronicles of Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader

A few years ago, after the moderately successful Prince Caspian, the House of Mouse decided that C.S. Lewis’ Narnia series was not profitable enough. Two years later, however, and Aslan and co are back courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox. Whilst there is a certain nobility in Fox’s faithful continuation of the story (almost all the cast remains unchanged) there is nothing to say that this latest instalment will break the mould by besting its predecessors box office performance.

Voyage of the Dawn Treader, the third of C.S. Lewis’ biblically infused books sees the younger fifty percent of the Pevensie kids once again transported to Narnia, this time through, what is to all intense and purposes, a well tech magic eye picture. Along with their less pioneering cousin Eustace played by Son of Rambow’s Will Poulter, Lucy and Edmund are reunited with the now King Caspian who has set sail on the titular vessel in search of seven of his father’s most trusted advisers.

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London Boulevard

To date I have watched more than what would be considered a ‘fair share’ of Soviet Montage Cinema. Yet, until yesterday, I had never found myself so completely at a loss as to exactly what was the point of a movie. The trailer may have pimped out newbie director William Monahan as the ‘Oscar winning writer of The Departed’ but as anyone with more than a passing interest in cinema will tell you, that story was really written by Alan Mak and Felix Chong (Infernal Affairs). Thus, when you tot up his remaining credits, i.e. Kingdom of Heaven, Body of Lies and Edge of Darkness you begin to wonder how Monahan actually scored such a sweet gig.

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Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps

As a rule I try to steer clear of movies that contain colons, both grammatical and anatomical. Granted there are some notable exceptions, but for every Dr Stranglove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb there’s fifty  Ballistic: Ecks vs Severs. Couple this with the fact that I’ve been whole heartedly underwhelmed by Oliver Stone’s last three box office contributions and you will see how the prospect of enduring Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps was not something I was relishing.

Smug is Good

With twenty three years between Stone’s two trips to Wall Street you’d have thought the director had had enough time to really postulate on what exactly that time had done to the avaricious Gordon Gekko. Unfortunately it would appear that Hollywood’s favourite conspiracy theorist has been filling his time with other, more pressing questions like ‘Who did kill off the electric car?’ and ‘How do they get those boats inside the little glass bottles?’

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Takers

History is, in reality, littered with crap ideas. The Penny Farthing, Esperanto, Lady Gaga. Now, with heist movie Takers hitting screens this weekend we have something else to add to this list. With an ensemble cast which reads like a who’s who of box office kryptonite very little about this film makes any sense. I’m under no illusion that teaming up the likes of Paul Walker, Hayden Christensen, Idris Elba (sorry Owen) and rap star Tip ‘T.I’. Harris ensures a certain portion of the ‘Burberry buck’ but if there is even a modicum of artistic integrity remaining in Hollywood films like Takers will be forever imprisoned in societies metaphysical bargain bin.

Bland of Brothers

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The Town

In the thirteen odd years since winning an Oscar for his work on Good Will Hunting hating Ben Affleck seems to have become a global past time. No one could deny there have been some notable indiscretions in that time; including but not limited to Gigli, Pearl Harbour, Paycheck and Jennifer Lopez. However, over the past couple of years Affleck’s career has taken a deserved upturn peaking with his directorial debut Gone Baby Gone.

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Now, three years on, Affleck has returned to the director’s chair for The Town and he’s assembled an impressive cast which reflects his renewed gravitas.
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Grown Ups

After a few trips to the States I have concluded that there are a number of cultural differences that I will never fully understand. Why do New Yorkers stand in the road when crossing the street? Why do Floridians have fruit with their bacon? And why the hell do they find Adam Sandler so funny?

Sandler's ring piece

Granted, there’s a certain juvenile charm about his early roles, Happy Gilmore and Airheads are tolerable and I’d even go as far as to say I enjoyed The Wedding Singer. But why oh why does the man who inflicted the likes of Click and Spanglish on the world, seem to have carte blanche to churn out whatever self indulgent tripe he wants? As you might expect, Grown Ups is another prime example of such tripe.

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