Day 334: Lock, Stock And Two Smoking Barrels (1998)

lockAfter today’s film, there are only 32 days left in the year which means the finish line isn’t too far away and I’ve begun my quest to watch films people recommend. The film I chose for today is a film that a friend of mine suggested since I expressed my love for the film Snatch. Snatch was directed by Guy Ritchie who also directed today’s film Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels. Eddy (Nick Moran) fancies himself to be a really good card player, but that changes when he plays the game with the wrong people. You see Eddy and his friends now owe Hatchet Harry (P.H. Moriarty) 500,000 lbs (which in today’s money is over 6 million US dollars). He has one week to get Harry his money or their fingers will be chopped off which in turn sends groups of all different thugs on one heck of a collision course. The film also stars Jason Flemyng (Snatch) as Tom, Dexter Fletcher (The Elephant Man) as Soap, Jason Statham (Crank) as Bacon, Vinnie Jones (Swordfish) as Big Chris, Lenny McLean (The Fifth Element) as Barry The Baptist, Frank Harper (Bend It Like Beckham) as Dog, Steven Mackintosh (Underworld: Evolution) as Winston, Sting as JD, Vas Blackwood (Mean Machine) as Rory Breaker, and Alan Ford (Snatch) as the Narrator.

lock-2I love the style of Guy Ritchie who kind of mixes the world of music videos with his films in where the music is almost an integral part of the film. The music at times can set up the moods of scenes or tell you what kind of characters have shown up on screen. There is one scene where the music is normal until it changes to something crazier when shady characters show up all of a sudden. The soundtrack itself is absolutely brilliant and a must have for any fan of music. The film itself is well written and absolutely brilliant. I loved every moment of the film including the setup of what was going down to the mystery of what in the heck is going to happen next. The acting was also superb from every angle as we get some memorable characters in this film. Two of my favorite characters from the film are these lowlifes by the name of Gary (Victor McGuire) and Dean (Jake Abraham) who are tasked to steal some guns, but in fact set up a giant sh** show that goes down in the last half of the film. I also loved the tones of the film because it has that British feel to it where it’s cloudy and gloomy looking like the weather outside in England. I definitely loved the film and I can see why it was recommended to me in the first place. I am going to give the film an A- for a final grade. 

Day 110: Legend (2015)

download-legend-hd-torrent-1It just dawned on me that I chose a film that is based on a true story and it’s Tuesday. You may be asking what is the significance of that and it’s because I used to do a blog piece called Based On A Truesday Story (play on the words True and Tuesday) for my other blog. Nevertheless, I chose the biopic Legend which stars Tom Hardy (The Dark Knight Rises) as both legendary London gangsters Ronnie and Reggie Kray. The film follows the rise and fall of the most notorious British gangsters in history during their run in the 1960’s from the east end of London told through the perspective of Francis Shea (Emily Browning), Reggie’s wife who witnessed almost it all. The film also stars Paul Anderson (Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows) as Albert Donoghue, Christopher Eccleston (Thor: The Dark World) as Nipper Read, Colin Morgan (The Living And The Dead) as Frank Shea, Tara Fitzgerald (Exodus: Gods And Kings) as Mrs. Shea, Adam Fogerty (Snatch) as Pat Connolly, Taron Egerton (Kingsman: The Secret Service) as Mad Teddy Smith, Shane Attwooll (Kingdom Of Heaven) as George Cornell, Chazz Palminteri (A Bronx Tale) as Angelo Bruno, and the film was directed by Brian Helgeland (A Knight’s Tale).

legend-2015b-880x320I have been dying to see this film since the moment I had heard about it and thanks to Redbox, I finally had my chance to view it. I am certainly glad that I did because the film further proves how much acting ability Tom Hardy has and that he is here to stay. For the whole entire film, we are told that Reggie is the normal one and that Ronnie is the one off his rocker. There is a scene at the end where Reggie just snaps and he doesn’t act like how he usually does. Ronnie looks at him and questions why he did it and says he wouldn’t have handled it that way almost making you believe that maybe he isn’t the crazy one anymore. That is until Reggie answers his question and it all makes sense that he was driven to his level. While the film is very good and it met my expectations, I do feel however that it was a little long at times (even though it’s only 2 hours long). The real catch about this film is the acting which is superb from not only Hardy, but from his co-stars Emily Browning, Taron Egerton, etc as they all did an amazing job. The sets were amazing as you felt you were in the east end of London in the 1960’s and the costumes were great too. The film is your typical gangster true story film where it makes them look bad ass while also making them look vulnerable as well. Like all true stories, there is the downfall because not everyone stays at the top. This is definitely a film that is worth checking out if you are a fan of Tom Hardy, British films, and gangster movies. I am going to give the film an A- for a final grade.

Day 40: Trainspotting (1996)

trainspottingBack in the 1990’s, it seemed that a lot of films were coming out that explored the darkness of the drug scene with some of them being very hard to watch. Trainspotting is one of those films that gained a lot of critical acclaim and that is why I chose to watch it for today. The film stars Ewan McGregor (Velvet Goldmine) as Renton, a guy who has a little bit of a problem in good ole Edinburgh, Scotland. You see Renton is mixed up in the heroin scene of Edinburgh and no matter how hard he tries to get out of it, it seems that either his friends or the allure of the drugs sucks him right back in. He’ll have to clean up quick before the scene eats him up alive. The film also stars Jonny Lee Miller (Hackers) as Sick Boy, Kevin McKidd (Dog Soldiers) as Tommy, Robert Carlyle (28 Weeks Later) as Begbie, Peter Mullan (Braveheart) as Swanney, Ewen Bremner (Snatch) as Spud, Kelly Macdonald (Boardwalk Empire) as Diane, James Cosmo (Braveheart) as Mr. Renton, Eileen Nicholas (The Quiet Ones) as Mrs. Renton, and the film was directed by Danny Boyle (28 Days Later).

trainspotting 2This is a very hard film to watch at times and so I am going to warn you that if you can’t stomach this kind of stuff then turn away. Every single person that I have talked to about this film has said the same exact thing to me and that is the dead baby scene is just way too messed up and I don’t get the point of it. I can take most things in life like zombie babies, but that was just way too much for me to handle. The film may have bee prevalent at that time, but I think it is still prevalent to today. There was a big issue back then with heroin and HIV and so I feel the film was raising awareness to the issue and how tough of a habit is to quit. Now you look at today’s generation and it’s a problem again. I love British cinema because it so over the top and I love the language. Ewan McGregor is absolutely fantastic in the film and I love what they did with make up as well. They make him look very sick during the film to sort of normal which was fantastic as they emphasized the drug habit. You can see Danny Boyle’s style of filmmaking shine through as there is similarities in this film with other works as far as cinematography is concerned. Like I said before, there is a lot of imagery in this film that you may not agree with or want to watch so I tell you to proceed with caution when watching it. I am going to give the film an A- for a final grade.