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7 Notes

"And the kids will say, haven’t you heard? Rick is dead!"
Recollecting on my first proper introduction to the genius of Rik, was not, like so many others - the people’s poet, but as the Eastwood wannabe Carlos in A Fistful Of Traveller’s Cheques - where riding a horse, holding pointless two man shootouts, attempting to spit out tobacco and saying the words ‘well B.F.’ while complaining of having no packed lunch, seemed to me just way more funny than they probably had any right to be. But this was that Rik Mayall guy. Out of The Young Ones right? A show I still hadn’t seen but had heard enough about to be silently counting the days for the fucking repeats to come round on TV again. And to be fair, I wasn’t actually using the fuck word back then as freely as I do now. It was probably more like bloody. Or blimey. Occasionally even B.F.
This was 1984 after all and I’d just turned 10.
But somehow this guy had already gotten into my psyche. By the time he finally appeared on my TV screen as the would-be anarchist sociology student, my view of comedy changed forever and I was to witness it wide eyed, a permagrin slapped across my face, as Rick and Vyvyan would knock seven shades of shit out of each other - destroying walls, ceilings, anything standing in their way - every single episode. To say I was converted was something of an understatement. Naturally it made total sense to now healthily spend my entire downtime embracing Rik Mayall as an entity: watching, reading, ingesting everything and anything this crazy, offbeat, hysterical comedian would turn out next.
The language became my own, the mannerisms I would copy for whatever reason, seeping into the young one I was - a poor imitator no question, of his comic godness (his words) - but an imitator that looked up to him all the same. I read The Young Ones book fifty times over, my first ever 7-inch was Cliff and them doing Living Doll. I embraced crappy VHS bootleg copies of Filthy, Rich and Catflap while my mates called it bollocks, and laughed out loud when He randomly cropped up spitting beer in An American Werewolf. Choosing to portray characters who seemed to strive so hard to be street and cool but ultimately always fail, Bad News' Colin Grigson was yet another extension of the Rik persona, forever more interested in playing up to the cameras shooting around him than he was with actually playing bass. Plain and simple, just fuck funny. But when either singing 'do you really wanna see my pants' during the Comic Relief live show or generally destroying the entire format with bags of baking powder on something as presumably safe as kid’s Jackanory, it was apparent this fucker was an unhinged wildcard of comedic genius, bursting with energy, raw talent and sporadic bursts of out an out violence. No more so was this evident than when out of the blue he rocked up, scratch that - burst through the doors - at the end of a Blackadder episode as the immortal Lord Flashheart and subsequently stole not only the bride to be, but the scene itself and pretty much the entire episode that had proceeded him, nailing the mix of flirtatious badboy - aimed squarely at the awesome Miranda Richardson - overly violent (as par the course) mental case, and charismatic, sexually charged asshole; while his fellow companions remained in awe and obvious trepidation at what kind of unexpected act this whirlwind of crazy was about to do next.
When one could argue the early nineties brought us the not so groundbreaking Bottom - a very obvious future incarnation of earlier tried, tested and already loved characters - it was never not without a sense of fun, clever comedic writing and for a change in style I felt, endless sequences of fighting, bodily fluids, breaking stuff and general mayhem - the gasman episode for all it’s over the top antics, an obvious highlight. But it was when he was allowed to step out of his comfort zone and deliver more straight comedy roles in Rik Mayall Presents… - Brief Encounter and Dancing Queen starring a youthful but no less brilliant Helena B.C. clear favourites - that a new untapped side of his acting emerged - showing his audience that of course there was actually a lot more to him than just smashing best mate Ade Edmondson around the face with a frying pan. 
For all these images he single handedly forever singed into my brain, there is still one to beat out all the others - that of one half of the dreamytime escort agency in Mr Jolly Lives Next Door. During the fifty crazy, booze filled, violent minutes of over the top insanity, we get two exceedingly grotesque and filthy individuals who are seemingly only interested in driving drunk, beating up on Chinese businessmen, running pensioners over, fighting in pub toilets, killing television entertainers and jumping out of a third story window after downing a pint of home brew fairy liquid. In short - it fucking rules. The moment where a contemplating Rik, calmly leans back against a large window in his office only to realise it has recently been smashed and no longer contains glass, resulting in him falling clean out of the building - will forever go down in history as one of the funniest comedy highlights of my early life. Rik nails his greasy, sweaty, slimy character with ease and sells the frantic grab for the window frame with perfect comedy timing.
The list goes on. Sadly however, life does not.
Getting the chance to meet him years back, he was of course the same crazy, laughing fool I always hoped he would be, saying ‘matey’ and ‘bloody hell’ like it was the most natural thing, while possessing the kinda energy that automatically was infectious. I guess after the quad bike incident he was given a second shot at living life. I heard how he would occasionally look up into the sky and wonder as to how he had managed to cheat death, being thankful for still smiling and the knowledge he’d made others smile even more. And for another sixteen years the bastard did just that. Cause knowing Rik he would’ve spent them well. 
You were a rock star, a pioneer and a comedy genius. So long man - you did bloomin’ good while you were around…

"And the kids will say, haven’t you heard? Rick is dead!"

Recollecting on my first proper introduction to the genius of Rik, was not, like so many others - the people’s poet, but as the Eastwood wannabe Carlos in A Fistful Of Traveller’s Cheques - where riding a horse, holding pointless two man shootouts, attempting to spit out tobacco and saying the words ‘well B.F.’ while complaining of having no packed lunch, seemed to me just way more funny than they probably had any right to be. But this was that Rik Mayall guy. Out of The Young Ones right? A show I still hadn’t seen but had heard enough about to be silently counting the days for the fucking repeats to come round on TV again. And to be fair, I wasn’t actually using the fuck word back then as freely as I do now. It was probably more like bloody. Or blimey. Occasionally even B.F.

This was 1984 after all and I’d just turned 10.

But somehow this guy had already gotten into my psyche. By the time he finally appeared on my TV screen as the would-be anarchist sociology student, my view of comedy changed forever and I was to witness it wide eyed, a permagrin slapped across my face, as Rick and Vyvyan would knock seven shades of shit out of each other - destroying walls, ceilings, anything standing in their way - every single episode. To say I was converted was something of an understatement. Naturally it made total sense to now healthily spend my entire downtime embracing Rik Mayall as an entity: watching, reading, ingesting everything and anything this crazy, offbeat, hysterical comedian would turn out next.

The language became my own, the mannerisms I would copy for whatever reason, seeping into the young one I was - a poor imitator no question, of his comic godness (his words) - but an imitator that looked up to him all the same. I read The Young Ones book fifty times over, my first ever 7-inch was Cliff and them doing Living Doll. I embraced crappy VHS bootleg copies of Filthy, Rich and Catflap while my mates called it bollocks, and laughed out loud when He randomly cropped up spitting beer in An American Werewolf. Choosing to portray characters who seemed to strive so hard to be street and cool but ultimately always fail, Bad News' Colin Grigson was yet another extension of the Rik persona, forever more interested in playing up to the cameras shooting around him than he was with actually playing bass. Plain and simple, just fuck funny. But when either singing 'do you really wanna see my pants' during the Comic Relief live show or generally destroying the entire format with bags of baking powder on something as presumably safe as kid’s Jackanory, it was apparent this fucker was an unhinged wildcard of comedic genius, bursting with energy, raw talent and sporadic bursts of out an out violence. No more so was this evident than when out of the blue he rocked up, scratch that - burst through the doors - at the end of a Blackadder episode as the immortal Lord Flashheart and subsequently stole not only the bride to be, but the scene itself and pretty much the entire episode that had proceeded him, nailing the mix of flirtatious badboy - aimed squarely at the awesome Miranda Richardson - overly violent (as par the course) mental case, and charismatic, sexually charged asshole; while his fellow companions remained in awe and obvious trepidation at what kind of unexpected act this whirlwind of crazy was about to do next.

When one could argue the early nineties brought us the not so groundbreaking Bottom - a very obvious future incarnation of earlier tried, tested and already loved characters - it was never not without a sense of fun, clever comedic writing and for a change in style I felt, endless sequences of fighting, bodily fluids, breaking stuff and general mayhem - the gasman episode for all it’s over the top antics, an obvious highlight. But it was when he was allowed to step out of his comfort zone and deliver more straight comedy roles in Rik Mayall Presents… - Brief Encounter and Dancing Queen starring a youthful but no less brilliant Helena B.C. clear favourites - that a new untapped side of his acting emerged - showing his audience that of course there was actually a lot more to him than just smashing best mate Ade Edmondson around the face with a frying pan. 

For all these images he single handedly forever singed into my brain, there is still one to beat out all the others - that of one half of the dreamytime escort agency in Mr Jolly Lives Next Door. During the fifty crazy, booze filled, violent minutes of over the top insanity, we get two exceedingly grotesque and filthy individuals who are seemingly only interested in driving drunk, beating up on Chinese businessmen, running pensioners over, fighting in pub toilets, killing television entertainers and jumping out of a third story window after downing a pint of home brew fairy liquid. In short - it fucking rules. The moment where a contemplating Rik, calmly leans back against a large window in his office only to realise it has recently been smashed and no longer contains glass, resulting in him falling clean out of the building - will forever go down in history as one of the funniest comedy highlights of my early life. Rik nails his greasy, sweaty, slimy character with ease and sells the frantic grab for the window frame with perfect comedy timing.

The list goes on. Sadly however, life does not.

Getting the chance to meet him years back, he was of course the same crazy, laughing fool I always hoped he would be, saying ‘matey’ and ‘bloody hell’ like it was the most natural thing, while possessing the kinda energy that automatically was infectious. I guess after the quad bike incident he was given a second shot at living life. I heard how he would occasionally look up into the sky and wonder as to how he had managed to cheat death, being thankful for still smiling and the knowledge he’d made others smile even more. And for another sixteen years the bastard did just that. Cause knowing Rik he would’ve spent them well. 

You were a rock star, a pioneer and a comedy genius. So long man - you did bloomin’ good while you were around…

30127 Notes

Sometimes it’s hard to say no. Ultimately, if you stick to your guns, you have the career that you want. Don’t get me wrong. I love a good payday and I’ll do films for fun. But ultimately my main goal is to do good work. If it doesn’t pay well, so be it. — Philip Seymour Hoffman

pretty much says it all. Too soon buddy, too soon…

(Source: mattybing1025)

13 Notes

"Well he got 3 million but he didn’t get the rose bushes. I got the rose bushes. I definitely got the rose bushes."
Director Barry Levinson takes a time out to chat with his amazing co-stars Tom Cruise and an unsurprisingly still in character Dustin Hoffman on the set of the seminal 1988 tour de force classic RAIN MAN.
The brother’s head to head during the custody scene near the end gets me every time. Outstanding. 

"Well he got 3 million but he didn’t get the rose bushes. I got the rose bushes. I definitely got the rose bushes."

Director Barry Levinson takes a time out to chat with his amazing co-stars Tom Cruise and an unsurprisingly still in character Dustin Hoffman on the set of the seminal 1988 tour de force classic RAIN MAN.

The brother’s head to head during the custody scene near the end gets me every time. Outstanding. 

Notes

"So you run in, mowin’ down a heap of bad guys, one of ‘em tries to creep up on ya, you spin, drive a blade through his chest and give out a typical Arnie quip…cool?"
Director John McTiernan hanging with some randomly bare chested guy from Austria in arguably his finest on screen performance. The original sci fi action slugfest classic - PREDATOR (1987) Zoom Image

"So you run in, mowin’ down a heap of bad guys, one of ‘em tries to creep up on ya, you spin, drive a blade through his chest and give out a typical Arnie quip…cool?"

Director John McTiernan hanging with some randomly bare chested guy from Austria in arguably his finest on screen performance. The original sci fi action slugfest classic - PREDATOR (1987)

1 Notes

"i don’t make things complicated, that’s the way they get all by themselves." 
The legendary crazy that is Mel Gibson takes some direction from seasoned film maker Richard Donner in the first of their many successful collaborations together. The highly influential, Shane Black scripted, best ever buddy cop action flick - LETHAL WEAPON (1987).  Zoom Image

"i don’t make things complicated, that’s the way they get all by themselves." 

The legendary crazy that is Mel Gibson takes some direction from seasoned film maker Richard Donner in the first of their many successful collaborations together. The highly influential, Shane Black scripted, best ever buddy cop action flick - LETHAL WEAPON (1987). 

2 Notes

"I was always kinda partial to Roy Rogers actually".
Back in their prime. Director John McTiernan gives tips on gun control to the best of all bad guys Alan Rickman, while the guy in the vest wonders if he’s gonna have to go back to tv. Undoubtably the best action movie ever made - 1988’s masterpiece DIE HARD.

"I was always kinda partial to Roy Rogers actually".

Back in their prime. Director John McTiernan gives tips on gun control to the best of all bad guys Alan Rickman, while the guy in the vest wonders if he’s gonna have to go back to tv. Undoubtably the best action movie ever made - 1988’s masterpiece DIE HARD.

1 Notes

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"Oooh. Guns, guns, guns. C’mon, Sal, the Tigers are playing…tonight. I never miss a game.”

Crazy dutch bastard film maker Paul Verhoeven gives out a helping hand to his quality lead actor Peter Weller during the awesome face reveal scene nearing the finale of his superior, never to be bettered, classic -  ROBOCOP (1987).

Notes

First time director Robert Harmon discusses various ways to menace the fuck outta Jim Halsey with his outstanding lead Rutger Hauer in undoubtably the actor’s finest onscreen performance. 1986’s road movie masterpiece THE HITCHER.  Zoom Image

First time director Robert Harmon discusses various ways to menace the fuck outta Jim Halsey with his outstanding lead Rutger Hauer in undoubtably the actor’s finest onscreen performance. 1986’s road movie masterpiece THE HITCHER. 

1 Notes

The requisite top 10 flicks from 2013 that were worth a goddamn…

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Coming in at no. 10 is Richie Cunningham’s ‘need for speed’ movie. Opening with the kinda iconography from a rev head’s wet dream (all extreme close up’s of rain drops on spinning tyres to engine piston’s firing), the movie showcases two extremely strong lead performances from Hemsworth and Bruhl proving theres a lot more to them than just Thor and the dodgy german sniper outta Inglorious. The action on the racetrack is matched by the compelling story of the two driver’s rivalry, nicely played out against the seventies backdrop (all costumes and crazy hairstyles present), with an interesting supporting cast led by the ever gorgeous Olivia Wilde. A well made, tension pounding race car flick overseen by director Howard who still has the ability to impress.

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Matt McConaughey continues his unprecedented rise in popularity and career making roles in this no doubt little seen indie flick about two young boys happening upon a drifter cum bad guy living in a river boat stuck up a tree. While both child actors impress in a Son Of Rambow way, Reese Witherspoon gives good white trash and the director’s go to guy Michael Shannon amazingly plays neither creepy or psychotic here, this is McConaughey’s film from the moment he appears on screen to the eventual climatic shoot out with the local law hunting him down. Not surprisingly he doesn’t disappoint, giving one of his best, most layered performances to date, which is saying something after the one two punch of Killer Joe and The Paperboy. A fun, well shot movie that’s well worth seeking out.

Hey whatever - bite me. I dug it. And so did a ton of other fuckers out there.  Seemingly everything director Marc Foster is involved in, I seem to get. His style just works for me I guess. Also Brad was the best he’s been in a while and although the original ending fuck off battle scenes woulda been quite something to see, but also no doubt worryingly cg’d (Hobbit 1 & 2 i’m looking at you), I really enjoyed the smaller, more downbeat ending set in Scotland. Some great stuff throughout with a real sense of peril and helplessness as Brad’s family is swept up in the maelstrom of the zombie epidemic. Nicely done.

Loved it. Danny Boyle continues to be one of the most original and talented working directors out there. Great performances from McAvoy (naturally) and also Cassel (who i’m not usually a massive fan of, even though he was pretty sweet when smashing a fire extinguisher into that rapist’s face) and a nice twisty plot that had me guessing till the end. When so much fucking shit is signposted way upfront in movies - it’s always a pleasant change to be surprised by the narrative. For me it came to a head in the final half hour when the soundtrack and action built up to an awesome finale, proving once again that even when Boyle has his hands tied up with shit like the olympic ceremony, the fucker can still turn out great little thrillers like this one. Whatever he has planned for his own personal take on storytelling next - I’m already there.

Dammit JJ, they picked a good one in you huh? After delivering the goods and then some in his first three movies off of Lost, (fuck yeah Mi3 bitches) it was always gonna be a tricky move not to do something cinematically different and instead return to the Star Trek franchise he had brought back from the dead. Luckily the ‘son of Spielberg’ seems to take this in his stride and delivers a rousing, action fuelled, beautiful imagined space flick with all returning characters present and correct, and a snappy, fun script helping it heaps. While not as good as the first movie, you can’t not sit back and enjoy the ride and laugh along with some of the lighter moments before the inevitable introduction of Benedict’s Cumber batch giving menace and evil and all things dark to proceedings while Pine, Quinto, Urban and yes, even Pegg do there thing effortlessly. Best bit easily the middle sequence when Khan and Kirk have to shoot through space dodging debris. JJ knows how to do big screen spectacle right now better than most and brings it to each of his movies continually. And for that, we are thankful. 

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Tense. Action packed. Clever. Unexpected. Tom Hanks. A great little fucking film elevated to best of category thanks in no small part to the actor at the center of this true life tale and the film maker behind the camera racking up the suspense and making sure we not only understand the plight of the crew but also get into the characters of the pirates who go up against them. Knowing what to expect from the trailer - it was nice to have quite a few moments of surprise along the way before Hanks leaves the boat and goes out on his own in the escape pod and we get to witness his life spiralling out of control ever more with a very real sense of - er is this poor fucker ever gonna survive this shit? The third act was edge of your seat knuckle ride stuff, with the navy seal sequence (usually way too americana bullshit) again surprisingly well executed with the final denouement of Hank’s realisation of his ordeal some of the finest fucking acting from just about anyone in the last decade. Supreme.

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And talking of talented - yet again team Pegg-wright-frost deliver the goods in this Sci-fi yarn, more about growing up and reminiscing on days gone by, than the crazy assed alien body snatcher lego robots trying to kill ‘em. While not as clever as Shaun (hard to beat), it blows Fuzz away with a great ensemble headed by a really fucking respectable turn by Pegg (you can’t help but love the douche character he plays) and more originality in the screenplay than most of Hollywood can fucking dream of. When you can laugh as much as I did during it’s running time, it’s a testament to these guys that they continue to produce worthy entertainment. A final nod has to go out to Frost’s exit through the pub door - respect is due.

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The movie I was gutted not to have seen on the big screen - this had me at Cruise and Sci-fi. Yet again, the fucker chooses very interesting, absorbing projects to be involved in with exciting fresh faced directors to put him through the paces. On first viewing I dug it. Different, clever and as always an awesome central performance (looking cool as shit cruising along on a dirt bike in snow goggles). On second viewing I loved the fuck out of it mainly for it’s originality, design and subtle use of CG to tweak the awesome photography of Iceland. Respect also to a great soundtrack by the french duo M83 - all swirling cinematic action beats. The end (although kinda similar to ID4 in plot) was executed neatly and made total sense from the character’s point of view but bugged me slightly in the fact that Cruise’s hero didn’t die. But then how could he right? It’s fucking Tommy C.

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Like it was ever not gonna feature in the best of list. After Favreau delivered 2008’s first and surprisingly well made comic book movie that kickstarted the whole superhero onslaught we now find ourselves in, and re-introduced the world to everyone’s favourite actor, Downey Jr. let us not forget the movie that firmly put him back on the map - the excellence that is Kiss Kiss Bang Bang. Directed by Shane Black. A genius amongst us. In short, put them both together again for this third instalment, it was never going to be anything other than a total blast. While Iron Man 2 faltered, save for a slinky Scarlett Johansson jumping around in a catsuit, here the movie goes all or nothing with a typically fuck funny screenplay and another perfect central performance from Downey riffing on everything he’s done before, running around a lot more as Stark than Stark in a suit - and naturally all the better for it. While the early incarnation of Spiderman had fucking Toby Maguire annoyingly pulling off his spidey mask at any given opportunity, in this you wanna see Downey’s mug more than just in computery close up behind the mask, delivering comic line after comic line until finally teaming up with Don Cheadle for a Riggs and Murtaugh style buddy cop third act. With a great mid air rescue sequence - pulling aerial photography reminiscent of the Point Break skydiving scene - and the typical twists and dialogue beats you’d expect from a Shane Black script, it’s fun as fuck from beginning to end. Sure the action goes crazy ass nuts near the end, with all the Iron Men and a pumped up Gwyneth defying death and kicking ass, but you forgive it all easy since she looks so damn good with messy hair and a vest top, Guy Pearce delivers on bad guy duties and Downey and Black are clearly just having sucha fucking ball. Oh and the genius of Ben Kingsley playing the audience with the whole Mandarin thing? Cool as shit.

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So I’d heard good things about the production. I was a big fan of Sandy B. if only for her as a person, not so much in her career choices - though Speed and Demolition Man deserve a mention. Clooney’s Clooney - you just can’t fault the fucker. And director Alfonso Cuaron, although having not made anything of my liking, seemed like an intelligent guy, pushing the envelope with effects work and his stylistic approach to film making.

And then I caught the trailer. On my 50 inch. Holy fucking fuck doesn’t quite cut it. Now this was the most eagerly anticipated flick to see on the big screen. And when it came down to it - gotta say it exceeded all expectations. Which if you knew me, is no mean feat. From the opening scene of Earth turning silently in it’s orbit and the distant radio voice coming in from the right hand speaker, a smile formed across my face and didn’t let up ‘till 90 minutes later. Here, finally was an intelligent, thought provoking space movie set in the present day showing us just how difficult it is up there to survive if the shit hits the fan and for Bullock and Clooney, shit really does hit the fan and then some. Along with, in my opinion, the greatest film maker of science fiction movies, Jim Cameron, I was blown away by the style, the visuals, the seamless integration of effects and never implemented before camera techniques and obviously a career best performance by Bullock. And let’s not forget how having the awesome Ed Harris on voice only, ground control duties, can only be a good thing.

The screenplay was everything it needed to be. It was never about making it the best fucking script around, it was showing us something we hadn’t ever seen before - an all encompassing trip around Earth’s orbit following the plight of one sole being as she fights for survival in insurmountable odds, within a hostile environment that just doesn’t wanna let up, shot with the kind of large scale cinematography Kubrick would be proud of and featuring sound design and a soundtrack that had the ability to make you feel you were actually there, going through a similar experience as the central character. In short I fucking loved every breathtaking frame of it.

The bar has been officially raised by Cuaron, and all subsequent space movies are gonna have a tough time competing. Good luck to ‘em. This film will be remembered for a very long time to come.

1 Notes

gotta say new shot of Damon in his endoskeleton thing looks fuck cool. No ideas on what it all means from the genius brain behind DISTRICT 9 but he sure looks like a badass mofo with the shaven head and the dirt smeared t.

Although just as pumped for Cruise’s ALL YOU NEED IS KILL - and his take on an endoskeleton whatthefuck - Damons’ definitely winning in them stakes.