Ticket to Paradise (2022) Film Review

Georgia (Julia Roberts) and David (George Clooney) were married for a while a long time ago, and now hate each other. However, when their daughter, Lily (Kaitlyn Dever) falls in love with a seaweed farmer, Gede (Maxime Bouttier) in Bali and decides to marry him and live there, they come together to try to change her mind.

This has the feel of an old school (think 80s/90s old school) rom com, but not. It just doesn’t quite work. It’s beautiful – the scenery is stunning and the water… wow – but that wasn’t enough. I don’t know if it’s that a film like this doesn’t work as well now as it did back in the day. I suspect that a lot of people will love it. I think it’s just fine.

Afterlife of the Party (2021) Film Review

Cassie (Victoria Justice) dies partying celebrating her birthday, but is able to use afterlife magic and ghostliness to try to find closure on her life.

Sometimes, it takes me a while to get around to actually writing these tiny little reviews, and sometimes in that time, I’ve pretty much forgotten everything about the film. At least with the films that are not great… and this is one of them. I think I didn’t hate watching it, but given I gave it 2 ½ stars on Letterboxd and can’t remember anything from the film… this clearly wasn’t a winner for me.

Baby Done (2020) Film Review

Zoe (Rose Matafeo) falls pregnant to her long time boyfriend, Tim (Matthew Lewis) and while he thinks it’s great, she’s freaking out. She’s used to an adventurous lifestyle, doing dangerous things and being free, and she’s not ready to give it all up.

I love the dry, New Zealand humour and this is a top notch cast (really, give me Rachel House anyday). It was kinda nice to see a bit of a genderswap with the pregnancy freakout – it seems it’s always the bloke not coping. I did find myself getting very frustrated with the characters, just wanting them to talk to each other, for crying out loud. Still… it didn’t really work for me. It had potential, but just didn’t quite get there.

Batman and Robin (1997) Film Review

And finally, Batman and Robin… what a stinker. I’m a big fan of George Clooney, but he was too charming and not tortured enough as Batman for me. Arnold Schwartzenegger was terrible as Mr Freeze, in fact both he and Uma Thurman as Poison Ivy seemed to be just punching out the one-liners and it didn’t work. This felt like it was probably down the director’s choices, perhaps just trying to capture the comic book element. It just felt really dumbed down. I wanted to enjoy both Chris O’Donnell and Alicia Silverstone more, but I didn’t. Avoid, for sure.

Batman Forever (1995) Film Review

And this is where the wheels started to come off this series of Batman films. Joel Schumacher is directing and he keeps a lot of the aesthetic that Tim Burton created in the first two. However, I never loved Val Kilmer as Batman. Tommy Lee Jones was ok as Harvey Dent and Jim Carrey was extremely…  Jim Carrey as the Riddler. I really disliked the scenes with the two of them together – it just felt absurdly over the top. And the Dr Chase Meridian plotline just annoyed me.

Batman (1989) Film Review

Batman (Michael Keaton) and The Joker (Jack Nicholson)… what more do you need to know? Oh, directed by Tim Burton. I remember it being talked about as a super dark film… but with the more recent iterations of Batman, far less so. I loved this as a kid, and it very much held up for me. Funny, but some darkness, and the Tim Burton aesthetic suited it so well. I’d love to know what someone who’s seen the recent films would think of this on their first viewing. Not sure whether it would have an impact at all.

Blithe Spirit (2020) Film Review

Charles (Dan Stevens) is a writer in the forties who’s suffering terrible writer’s block. Then a medium manages to bring his dead wife back and he finds himself stuck in a strange kind of love triangle.

The cast is great, the concept seems good (although a quick online search shows that there was a 1945 film, and that the original was writer by Noel Coward which makes me very keen to see that version) and I guess it was fine. I had a few laughs, but nowhere near enough. Not even Isla Fisher or Dame Judi Dench could save it for me.

Day Shift (2022) Film Review

Bud (Jamie Foxx) kills vampires. In a world where most people don’t know that vampires exist, he kills them and makes money by selling their fangs. He was part of a union (or similar) for vampire killers, but his hot head has him on the outer. But with his ex-wife’s threat to take their daughter away if he doesn’t help cover school fees (which makes her sound like the bad guy, but she’s not, and the film does address that a bit), he needs the help of the union. After being vouched for by Big John Elliot (Snoop Dog), he gets landed with a shadow; Seth (Dave Franco) a pencil pushing bureaucrat.

This is all I wanted it to be. Vampire killing (with super-fast and agile vampires – most cool), comedy, stupidity… it’s a really fun movie. If you like vampire movies and silly horror comedy, I reckon it’s worth a watch.

Death to 2020 (2020) and Death to 2021 (2021) Film Review

2020 was arguably one of the worst years in memory… until 2021… and maybe until 2022… it’s hard to know when pandemics and the rise of white supremacy and wars and general bad behaviour and lockdowns and the lock just keep kind of coming. Death to 2020 was like a mockumentary about so much of the stuff that happened, though a lot of the humour for me came in the fact that it was so very, very close to reality. For me, these films made me laugh in uncomfortable recognition and hope that perhaps things will turn around? *sigh*