The Aeronauts review “More melodrama than meteorology”

The Aeronauts posterNothing sets the tone better for a movie than a bit of historical revisionism. The Aeronauts, starring Eddie Redmayne, follows the real-life exploits of James Glaisher as he embarks on a perilous adventure in the name of scientific advancement. Where the film departs from reality is in Glaisher’s co-pilot, actual companion Henry Coxwell is replaced by fictional hot air balloon pilot, Amelia Wren (played by Felicity Jones).

Armed with this knowledge before entering the cinema, I went in fully aware that I was in for more melodrama than meteorology. Continue reading

Unpopular Opinion: Ridley Scott hasn’t made a good film since Gladiator

Ridley Scott hasn't made a great film since GladiatorMake no mistake about it, Ridley Scott’s early, pre-2000s career is littered with enduring classics and hidden gems. Blade Runner, to this day, remains one of the greatest science fiction films ever made. Thelma and Louise remains an immensely enjoyable, girl power-fuelled joyride that holds up so well it’s perhaps more impactful now than it was at the time of release. And 1977’s The Duellists (Scott’s directorial debut) remains a well crafted and considered film.

To experience Ridley Scott as his peak though, we must travel all the way back to 1982. Following the release of Alien and Blade Runner in quick succession, Scott had not only established himself as one of Britain’s best filmmakers, he’d claimed his place as the premier director within the science fiction genre. Alien, quite rightly, is regarded as a masterpiece hybrid of sci-fi and horror. And Blade Runner, one of my favourite films, is without a doubt one of the greatest, pure science fiction movies ever conceived. Continue reading

Retro review – The Shining: Stanley Kubrick’s almost masterpiece

The Shining movie posterIn the words of Stanley Kubrick himself, it’s easy to make a good film, difficult to make a great one, and it takes a miracle to make a masterpiece. For many, The Shining (1980) sits firmly in that third group, a true masterpiece both of the horror genre and cinema at large.

You can imagine my excitement then, when I heard that my local Cineworld were hosting a limited screening of the remastered director’s cut of the film. Having been thoroughly terrified by The Shining during my first viewing well over 10 years ago, and with the upcoming release of its sequel Doctor Sleep only days away, I relished the chance to recapture the terror of the Overlook Hotel in remastered 4k. Continue reading