#Batman: The Dark Knight Returns – My (Short, Very Short) Review

20140318-202450.jpg

Picked this up in the library for a read. I can’t actually believe I don’t own a copy as this is one of the best graphic novels I have ever read.

It comes from Frank Miller and features a fantastic story, super, atmospheric art.

It’s now spawned a two part movie which is also of high quality.

A brilliant book that I would recommend to any Bat-fan for a read.

Frickin’ Awesome!!

That is all……….

Cheers!!!

#CatchingBullets: Memoirs Of A Bond Fan by @Mark0Connell – My (Short) Book Review

20140317-190340.jpg

Being a Bond fan, this was a must read book for me. Others obviously had the same thought and I was lucky enough to have this book given to me as a gift. And what a gift…..I’ve now just finished my second read of the book.

This books takes us through Mark O’ Connell’s life, so far, as a fan of James Bond, telling us of his first 007 movie, recording them onto to BASF video tapes from TV, posters on his wall, wolfing down his Christmas dinner in time to watch the Bond movie that’d be showing, picking up ex rental videos from his local garage, his love of Sir Rog and all other manner of cool, yes cool, Bond moments from his life. Oh, and not forgetting his obsession with the lovely Maud Adams (who we hear from at the end of the book).

The book brings back so any memories for me as myself and Mark are of a similar age. Ok, maybe I’m a year or 2 older, haha! No matter though, it brings about so many memories of my own time as a fan of James Bond, in particular as a youngster.

Mark also gives us his own unique thoughts on all the Bond movies (barring Skyfall) and makes some very valid arguments for movies that may be less popular than others.

We are also told about Marks grandfather, Jimmy, who was a driver for Eon for many years. This is very heartwarming stuff, especially reading how highly thought of Jimmy was at Eon and, in particular, by Cubby Broccoli.

This is a Bond book, written by a Bond fan and written for Bond fans. However, even non Bond fans would find this a super read.

I cannot recommend this book enough to any James Bond fan who may read this.

A triumph for Mark.

Now that Skyfall has come and gone, I’d love to see an update or just the next chapter in Mark’s 007 fandom. Sure it’d be more of the same great stuff.

Fantastic stuff and I’m sure I’ll go back and read it again!!

Thanks for reading as always.

As I’ve said before, I’m not great with the words but I hope you enjoy reading this. Cheers……

You can read more on the book and more from Mark at http://www.markoconnell.co.uk

#RoboCop (1987) – My (Short) Movie Review……..

Image

(After watching last night, this is re-posted from my older blog)

Plot – In a dystopic and crime-ridden Detroit, a terminally wounded cop returns to the force as a powerful cyborg haunted by submerged memories.

A cheap as chips buy from my local Sainsbury’s, RoboCop. One of my favourite movies to watch, Robocop was a movie ahead of its time.

It’s an action packed movie with state of the art special effect for its time. A super story, with lots in it that is still relevant in the world today.

Peter Weller is super as Alex Murphy, brutally murdered and whose body is then used to become RoboCop. To be honest Wellers’ performance as RoboCop himself outshines and part of his, short, time as Murphy but then, that’s how it should be I guess haha. Excellent.

Then we have Nancy Allen as Murphy’s partner, Officer Anne Lewis. Again, great performance. As Lewis she soon figures out that RoboCop is, in fact, Murphy himself.

The villain of the piece is Clarence Boddicker, played with gusto by the, always excellent, Kurtwood Smith. Boddicker, with help from his goons, being the man who murdered Alex Murphy, along with his band of goons.

Other great actors in this include Ronny Cox as Dick Jones, number 2 at OCP (Omni Consumer Products), and Miguel Ferrer as the man behind the creation of RoboCop, Bob Morton.

This movie went on to spawn not only 2 sequels of differing quality but also a TV series, cartoon series’, 4 more TV movies, comics etc etc.

As you’ll also know RoboCop has been rebooted for today and has received mixed reviews. Myself, I’m gonna wait for now before I see it and keep the memory of the original.

For me, an easy 9/10.

Cheers and thanks for reading……..

 

 

 

My #JamesBond #Bondathon: The Spy Who Loved Me – My Review

Plot – James Bond investigates the hijacking of British and Russian submarines carrying nuclear warheads with the help of a KGB agent whose lover he killed

20140311-143708.jpg

Ah, Sir Rog’s finest moment as James Bond, 007 with his Licence To Kill (…..”and has done so on numerous occasions”). In my opinion anyway, I believe this to be Roger Moore’s best Bond movie of all he did.

Moore is always excellent as Bond but, in this, I believe he excels himself. Sure, he gives us his little innuendos (it wouldn’t be the same without it) but we also get more emotional scenes, an excellent scene showing a very ruthless streak (see his finishing off of Sandor) and a sense that Rog is enjoying himself in this movie.

And why shouldn’t he enjoy himself, opposite the lovely Barbara Bach. Fair enough, she may be a little wooden in her performance but it doesn’t detract anything from the movie. She’s worthy competition for 007.

Speaking of worthy competition, Bond has plenty in this movie. First up we have main villain web handed Karl Stromberg played by the brilliant Curt Jurgens. Jurgens is excellent bring a very tough and sinister villain to the piece.

However, Stromberg, while a memorable villain, is not the more well-known from The Spy Who Loved Me. That honour goes to Richard Kiel, who plays Jaws, an over 7 foot Metal Mouthed Mountain. Kiel was just an excellent fit for the role and became one of the most memorable characters in the Bond series barring 007 himself.

All the usual suspects are back including Bernard Lee, Desmond Llewellyn and Lois Maxwell as M, Q and Moneypenny respectively. Thrown in the luscious Caroline Munro as Naomi and Walter Gotell as General Gogol, among others, and you have a very fine cast.

It’s a great story, great action, great acting, the wonderful Lotus Esprit and, to top it off, that awesome parachute jump. Fantastic.

All in all a great Bond movie and Roger Moore’s best (in my own opinion).

As always, thank you for reading……………

My #JamesBond #Bondathon: The Man With The Golden Gun – My Review

Plot – Bond is led to believe that he is targeted by the world’s most expensive assassin and must hunt him down to stop him

20140310-110243.jpg

Bit late with this one as I watched it last week but here is my review of The Man With Golden Gun.

Roger Moore is back for his second outing as 007 in this movie that sees him up against assassin Francisco Scaramanga, played by Christopher Lee.

This was obviously released at a time when Kung Fu movies were becoming a big thing and Bond movie producers seemed to want to cash in on that. They do a half decent job of it I guess, this isn’t the best of Moore’s Bond movies and is, in my opinion, inferior to his previous Live And Let Die.

Moore as James Bond does his best to make the movie better than it is. Always reliable, I love Moore’s 007 and I still love him in this despite the movie not being as good as his last.

Christopher Lee makes a good Scaramanga; he’s a super actor and hams it up nicely as the £1,000,000 a pop assassin.

His henchman is the vertically challenged Nick Nack played by Herve Villechaize. He’s probably one of the most well-known of all Bond movie henchmen.

The “main” Bond girl in this movie is Mary Goodnight, played by the lovely Britt Ekland. She’s ok in the role but seems to spend more time either in a nightie or bikini. Now, to some, this won’t be a problem (at times it probably isn’t to me as she is very lovely) but, I don’t know, I guess it’s just a sign of the times. To be fair, she has more on in this than she does in her turn in The Wicker Man.

There’s also the first appearance of Maud Adams in a Bond movie. Before her excellent turn as Octopussy she played the role of Miss Anders here. Another lovely, she plays her time in the movie well as an ally of 007.

Another ally of 007 is Lt Hip played by Soon-Tek Oh. Bond doesn’t figure out he’s an ally until some time after they meet. Bond and Hip share a good relationship during the movie I think and have some good scenes together.

As we’ve always had so far, Bernard Lee returns as M, Desmond Llewellyn as Q and Lois Maxwell as Moneypenny. As always, they are a joy to watch in their limited screen time.

We also have the return of Clifton James as Sherriff J W Pepper in what is nothing but comedy filler really. Doesn’t add much to the story other than a few laughs. He is very watchable though.

There’s some excellent action sequences in the movie, in particular the cork-screw car jump over a canal. Great looking stunt although slightly spoiled by the awful sound effect added in. A little odd if in my opinion. Another odd thing is how Bond is kind of made to look weak after escaping Hai Fat’s karate school. Having Lt Hips nieces kick bad guys arses, ushering Bond out of the way, makes 007 look a little soft for me. That’s just a couple of little things that don’t quite seem right to me but other than that the movie is ok. It also has one of the greatest names given to any “Bond Girl” (although it’s difficult to call her that) in the naked and swimming, Chew Mee. Great!!

Anyway, as always, no marks out of 10 for Bond movies as I’m a big fan but, even though this is disappointing at times, it’s still an enjoyable enough movie.

Cheers and thanks, as always, for reading………………….

#Superman: Dark Knight Over Metropolis. Graphic Novel (Short) Review

Plot – When a dead body turns up with a Kryptonite ring and a bus ticket from Metropolis, Batman has no choice but to follow the clues where they lead – the home city of the Man Of Steel.

20140309-165033.jpg

I picked this up from my local library a week or so ago and have just had the chance to read it.

It starts off with a story called Skeeter. It’s an odd story and one I probably wouldn’t associate with Superman or Batman. It’s a kinda vampire tale, probably more suited to a Vertigo title than this. Doesn’t have anything to do with the main story and is just filler.

The next story is The Limits Of Power. This has a Fantastic 4 type feel to it. Four people, problems in space and suffer radiation. However, in this one, instead of them all gaining powers (which they kinda do) the end up passing away with the exception of one of them. An okish story but more filler.

Then there’s the main story, Dark Knight Over Metropolis, and main plot. Superman and Batman make a good team and this is a decent story that features Intergang, Gangbuster, Chiller and Shockwave among others. Good stuff.

Nice art all the way through and a good Sunday afternoon read.

While it’s good, it doesn’t blow me away this book so I’ll give it a 6/10.

As always, thanks for reading and apologies that I’m not the greatest with “the words”.

Cheers………

My #JamesBond #Bondathon Now Up To Live And Let Die – My (Short) Review……

Plot – 007 is sent to stop a diabolically brilliant heroine magnate armed with a complex organization and a reliable psychic tarot card reader.

image

So, my Bondathon closes the Connery chapter………for now and rolls on to New Bond on the Block, Roger Moore.

After the pre-title sequence, where 3 MI6 agents are killed, we’re introduced to Moore’s 007 between the sheets with a beautiful Italian agent. This pretty much sums up Roger Moore as James Bond.

Moore certainly makes his mark as Bond in Live And Let Die playing 007 in a way we’ve never seen before, totally different to anything that Connery or Lazenby did. And it’s a good thing, bringing a whole new freshness to the Bond movies. I have a lot of love for Roger Moore as 007 although I think the best is Connery. If Connery is the best then Moore is my favourite.

As for the villain, well that is Kanaga, played by the brilliant Yaphet Kotto. He’s the heroine “magnate” with a ploy to take over all heroine dealing business. Kotto does a great job in this, especially as he is also playing Kananga’s alter ego, Mr Big.

One of the other villains is the very memorably Tee Hee, him of the claw for a hand. Julius Harris is excellent in this role. There’s also the very excellent Geoffrey Holder who plays Baron Samedi (That’s Saturday for those who speak French).  Apart from Bond himself, one of the most memorable of characters.

The Bond girls of the movie; first of all we have the Queen Of Cups, Rosie Carver, played by Gloria Hendy. Far from my favourite Bond girl she had an important part in the movie and played the dizzy CIA / double crossing agent very well.

The other, main Bond girl, is the stunning Jane Seymour who plays the tarot card reader Solitaire. One of the favourite Bond girls of the series, Seymour is excellent as the innocent, virginial (until Bond has his way) psychic. Seymour is gorgeous and it’s no wonder she’s a favourite.

There’s also Clifton James as Sherrif J W Pepper for comedy value, Felix Leiter, played, for the first time, by David Hedison (he returns in Licence To Kill) and the appearances of the ever dependable Bernard Lee as M and Lois Maxwell as Moneypenny. Unfortunately there is no appearance this time from Desmond Llewellyn’s, Q, which is a shame.

This is a great movie that flows along nicely and is a great introduction to Bond as played by Roger Moore.

A couple of things that bother me are the introduction of Moore as Bond. I know finding him in bed is a typical Moore, Bond moment but it doesn’t hit you like if should. Just my opinion. Also, again my opinion, not the best pre-title sequence. Don’t get me wrong, it sets the movie up nicely but I guess I’m used to being spoilt.

Great music as always and super title song from Paul McArtney and Wings.

Anyway, excellent first Bond movie for Sir Rog. As always, I’ll not be marking Bond movies out of 10.

So, cheers and thanks for reading……