500 Days Of Film Reviews The 61st Annual BFI London Film Festival
500 Days Of Film Reviews The Career Of Director Guillermo del Toro
500 Days Of Film Reviews The Top 25 Best Science Fiction Movies
500 Days Of Film Reviews 2017's Most Creative And Original Films
500 Days Of Film Reviews Ten Films That Will Make You Smile
500 Days Of Film Reviews The Must-Watch Films Of Winter 2017
500 Days Of Film Reviews 2017's BFI London Film Festival Programme
500 Days Of Film Reviews The Top Films Of Director, Kathryn Bigelow
500 Days Of Film Reviews The Best Movies On Amazon Prime Video
500 Days Of Film Reviews The Shocking Conclusions Of 20 Classic Movies
500 Days Of Film Reviews The Top 5 Horror Films On Amazon Prime Video And Netflix
500 Days Of Film Reviews Stunning Scores From Classic Space Films
500 Days Of Film Reviews 10 Of The Best Netflix Original Films
500 Days Of Film Reviews The Best Films Under 90 Minutes Long
500 Days Of Film Reviews The 2017 Cannes Film Festival
500 Days Of Film Reviews 10 Stunning Animated Films
500 Days Of Film Reviews Royal Albert Hall's Magical Screening Of Harry Potter And The Philospher's Stone Accompanied By A Live Orchestra
500 Days Of Film Reviews Cinema’s Most Terrifying Monsters
500 Days Of Film Reviews 50 Films Now Available On Amazon Prime Video
500 Days Of Film Reviews 50 Top Movie Quotations And Challenges You To Guess The Movie They Are From!
500 Days Of Film Reviews 10 Films Based On True Life Events
Following Its Re-Release In Cinemas, 500 Days Of Film Reviews David Lynch’s Mulholland Drive
500 Days Of Film Reviews 10 Feel Good Films To Watch On Netflix
500 Days Of Film Reviews 20 Terrifying Horror Films
500 Days Of Film Reviews The Movies Of Director, Ben Wheatley
500 Days Of Film Reviews 52 Films By 52 Female Directors
500 Days Of Film Reviews The Work Of Director Andrea Arnold
500 Days Of Film Reviews 35 Academy Award Facts That Are Guaranteed To Turn You Into An Oscar Expert!
500 Days Of Film Reviews The 2017 British Academy of Film and Television Arts Awards
500 Days Of Film Reviews The Top 10 Best Romantic Films
500 Days Of Film Reviews Comedy Classic, Groundhog Day, Starring Bill Murray
500 Days Of Film Reviews The Best Performances Of Casey Affleck
500 Days Of Film Reviews The 74th Annual Golden Globes
500 Days Of Film Reviews The Films To Watch Out For In 2017
500 Days Of Film Reviews The Best Child Performances of 2016
500 Days Of Film Looks At The Christmas Gifts That You Can Buy The Movie Lover In Your Life
500 Days Of Film Reviews Ten Tinsel-Tastic Classic Christmas Movies For The Forthcoming Festive Season
500 Days Of Film Reviews The Career Of Director Denis Villeneuve.
500 Days Of Film Reviews 30 Remarkable And Gripping Documentaries On Netflix
500 Days Of Film Falls In Love With Europe's Biggest Cinema - The Royal Albert Hall
500 Days Of Film Explores The Wonderful World Of Japanese Animation Powerhouse, Studio Ghibli
500 Days Of Film Explores The Films Of Director Jeff Nichols
This week, I invited a group of friends out for the evening. And everyone left in tears.
Sound like a disaster? Far from it.
We all went to the cinema to see Thea Sharrock’s Me Before You. Most of us had brought packs of tissues because we had either read the best-selling source novel by Jojo Moyes (who also wrote the film’s screenplay) or had heard that this film was pretty darn emotional.
Why did we go to the movies knowing that we would get upset? Well, because a good old fashioned tear-jerker can be surprisingly cathartic.
Just as a horror film allows us to feel scared in a safe environment, a weepy movie allows us to get sad, take a deep breath and move on - often, thanks to the emotional release, feeling surprisingly uplifted.
Watching Me Before You made me think about the more emotional films that I have watched since starting my 500 Days Of Film challenge. As as result, I have made a list of my top ten tear-jerkers.
It seems hard to believe, but 500 Days Of Film is now a year old! Thankfully, I am well on track, having watched about 390 films so far.
This milestone has prompted me to look back over my year of film… why did I start and what have I learned?
Last May, I decided to set myself a challenge: to reconnect with film by watching 500 films in 500 days. I also wanted to get more strategic and break out of my cinematic comfort zone - life is just too short for bad movies, right?
I made a list of the most popular and critically acclaimed movies of the past five or so years. I then added some film classics and, before long, I had a list of approximately four hundred films. I started to wonder, just how long would it take to watch all of these films?
Then, the number 500 appeared in my mind. Could I watch 500 films in 500 days? I figured that it would be a challenge (factoring in holidays and the hope of a non-screen based social life), but doable.
At the beginning of my 500 Days Of Film Challenge, I made a list of all of the places I could source the films that I wanted to watch.
(I wrote a blog about it here: Top 10 Ways To Watch Movies At Home).
Netflix was, of course, on this list. However, back then, I was skeptical - I wasn't sure that Netflix was going to be much help in my film challenge. It just didn't appear to offer the films that I wanted to watch. I was even tempted to cancel my subscription.
Almost a year on and and how things have changed. I have now seen some wonderful films thanks to Netflix (documentaries in particular). Many of these movies are well known but some were hidden movie gems for me.
As there is nothing worse than endlessly scrolling to try to find a film, here are 40 movies that you may have missed on Netflix.
500 Days Of Film Reviews Five Of Tom Hiddleston's Most Impressive Performances
One of the things that I have noticed, as I make my way through my 500 Days Of Film Challenge, is that I am missing out on some pretty special TV.
I am often asked if I have watched an episode of this or finished the series of that. My reply? I don't really watch TV anymore... I'm just too busy with my movies.
In recent weeks, lots of people have asked me if I have watched The Night Manager. I have not. Apparently I am missing out and I am thinking that I may have to squeeze this BBC spy drama into my viewing schedule (somehow).
Tom Hiddleston's performance in this show has created quite a buzz. Aha! (I think - obviously I would never actually say aha out loud because that would be, you know, weird). Here is an actor that I can talk about.
However, many people (that I have spoken to) had not come across Hiddleston before seeing him in The Night Manager.
As a result, I decided to write a post about my Top 5 Favourite Tom Hiddleston movie performances. Let me know what you think!
A couple of weeks ago, Odeon Cinemas tried something new. The cinema chain chose a foreign language film for its latest Screen Unseen event (the French thriller, Disorder).
It was wonderful to see a foreign language film on the big screen and I do hope that this is the start of a wider distribution of world cinema.
This film choice also made me think of my past (and frankly) ridiculous attitude to subtitles. I would avoid foreign language films because I didn’t want to do too things at once - watch and read. Was it laziness? Ignorance. Perhaps a combination of both.
I am so glad that I am now over my subtitle phobia. These days, it doesn’t matter to me where the film comes from. Indeed, I am often more interested in films from countries other than my own (England) and America.
As, it took my 500 Days Of Film Challenge to get me to this better place, I thought I would use this post to share my top ten foreign language films*.
Napster founder, Sean Parker, has turned his focus onto the movie industry. He is working on a service that will make new films available to watch at home on the day of their theatrical release. This new initiative is called Screening Room.
Parker’s plan is to make these movies available to rent (via a special anti-piracy equipped set-top box) for 48 hours with a proposed cost of around $50 (£35) per movie rental. The box itself will cost approximately $150.
Inevitably, news of Screening Room caused a stir in the film world. Some industry insiders voiced their horror at the proposal - warning that it would increase piracy and (yikes) bring about the death of cinema.
Conversely, other observers welcomed Screening Room - stating that it will benefit the film industry by exposing a movie to a much wider audience and arguing that such a system would actually reduce the amount of piracy.
500 Days Of Film Reviews Raiders Of The Lost Ark Live At London’s Royal Albert Hall
Raiders Of The Lost Ark turns 35 years old this year and what better way to celebrate than with a screening of this classic film at the Royal Albert Hall accompanied by a live orchestra?
Raiders sees archaeology professor and action hero, Indiana Jones (Harrison Ford), racing against time to find the legendary Ark of the Covenant before a group of Nazis get their hands on this powerful ancient relic.
Teaming up with his feisty, hard drinking ex, Marion Ravenwood (Karen Allen), and good friend Sallah (John Rhys-Davies), this quest put Indy's expertise and endurance to the test.
Steven Spielberg's action adventure won five Oscars* in 1982 and is often found at the top of best loved and most critically acclaimed movie lists (Empire placed Raiders at number two in its list of the greatest movies ever made, second only to The Godfather).
The one Oscar that Raiders Of The Lost Ark surely should have won was for John Williams’ Best Music (original score). Okay, Vangelis’ Chariots Of Fire is also rather iconic but, for me, it is Williams all the way.
Raiders Of The Lost Ark Live was accompanied by the wonderful 21st Century Orchestra and conducted by its founder, Ludwig Wicki. The event marks the first time a complete Williams score has been played at the Royal Albert Hall.
Odeon has just released its Limitless membership programme.
In exchange for a monthly payment of £17.99 (£19.99 for Central London cinemas) you can watch as many films as you like at participating Odeon cinemas.
Limitless will certainly save me money over the course of the year. With a full price adult cinema ticket costing between £10-12, I would only need to visit the cinema twice a month for this membership to make financial sense.
So, I am excited to report that I am now a proud member of Odeon’s Limitless club.
To save even more money, I decided to pay the 12 month minimum membership upfront - a cost of £205. This will save me just under £12 per year. I don’t know how you do maths, but to me that’s some free Ben & Jerry's right there!
The Academy Awards managed to be controversial, predictable and surprising this year. The Revenant picked up the Oscars for Best Director, Best Actor and Best Cinematography but failed to bag Best Film - this went to Spotlight.
Mad Max: Fury Road scooped up the most awards overall - winning six of those gold statuettes - many in the more technical categories.
Brie Larson won the Academy Award for best actress for her superb performance in Room. Mark Rylance won the best supporting actor category for his role in Bridge Of Spies and Alicia Vikander won the Oscar for best supporting actress for her part in Ex Machina.
As widely predicted, Inside Out won best animation and Son Of Saul won best foreign language film.
Meanwhile, Amy won the award for best documentary.
Here are all of the 2016 Academy Award winners in full:
At the beginning of this year, I found myself hopelessly addicted to Netflix’s Making A Murderer.
It became quite a problem as all I wanted to do was binge watch this remarkable true crime series.
I was, of course, not alone. Making A Murderer has become quite the international phenomenon.
The only trouble with binge watching a television series is that I tend to feel utterly lost once it has finished. Do you find that too?
This prompted me to look for other true crime documentaries … and boy did I find some superb films.
In this post, I will list my top ten true crime documentaries (taken from the films that I have watched during my 500 Days Of Film Challenge).
All of these films come highly recommended. Just a few words of warning - for maximum enjoyment and impact… watch first and Google later :)
The 2016 Academy Awards, hosted this year by Chris Rock, take place on Sunday 28th February! Taking account of time differences etc, just how can film fans in the UK watch the Oscars?
Presenters and nominees will begin their walk down the red carpet at 7pm local time and the ceremony itself is due to start at 8.30pm. For UK viewers, this means that the red carpet starts at midnight and the event at 1.30am.
If you want to watch the Oscars live in the UK (the awards are being broadcast by ABC in the US), you can do so via Sky's dedicated Oscars channel (live until 6th March). Hosted by Alex Zane and featuring a panel of film critics. You can also watch via your NowTV subscription.
If you do not fancy watching the Oscars on television, you can always catch the winners on social media. The Academy has its own Twitter account (@Oscars_Live) and many film websites and critics will be staying up and live tweeting the results.
Alternatively, of course, you can tuck yourself up, have a good night's sleep and wait for my Oscar's recap post tomorrow morning :)
Well I've counted down my favourite romantic movies from 50-25... now it is time to look at those films that made the top 25.
But, first, what did you think of this list so far?
I'd love to know. Why not leave me a comment in the box at the end of this post?
Just to emphasise, these films were chosen from those that I have watched during my 500 Days Of Film Challenge (click here to see my movie lists).
Over the past few weeks, I have watched and re-watched some of my favourite cinematic love stories.
Before long, I realised that I had watched quite a number of these 'romantic' films.
As I love a good list, I decided to rank these films in order of my preference.
I would love to share these movies with you.
However, before we start, I should mention two things.
Firstly, I realise that I have not watched every single romantic film in this genre. I may not have watched your favourite. I have also only selected those films that I have watched since my movie challenge began back in May 2015.
Secondly, you may disagree with my ranking. I have to emphasise that this is just how I feel about these movies. You are completely free to agree or disagree. Let me know how you feel either way. I have a comments section at the end of my post especially there for you to enlighten me. I just love talking movies with you all!
Okay, let's make a start... here is part one of my top 50 favourite romantic movies! I'm counting back from 50-25. (Click here to see my top 25).
Happy Groundhog Day!
Just kidding... it is, of course, actually the 3rd of February.
I watched Groundhog Day last night for what must be the millionth time. I just love this film so much.
Of course, I am not alone. So many people love this movie - and for so many reasons.
Here are just ten of them:
500 Days Of Film Reviews Labyrinth And Finds 20 Reasons Why It Remains A Magical Cult Classic
I have loved Labyrinth since forever. I have watched it so many times.
I love this film for all of its unsettling darkness and twisty humour. I love it for the amazing puppets and the brilliant sets.
However, more than anything, I love Jareth the Goblin King (David Bowie).
After the news of Bowie's death, I knew that I had to watch Labyrinth again. Of course, I wasn't alone.
Many cinemas have screened Labyrinth over the past few weeks in tribute to a man who meant so much to so many.
It is wonderful to watch Bowie in this iconic role.
A few of you then asked me to list the films that I haven’t enjoyed. And I am most happy to oblige!
As I mentioned last week, creating a list of my favourite films was hard. I really struggled to narrow it down to twenty. So I was quite surprised to find my list of least favourite films really easy to make.
The reason for this is because (so far) I have loved more films than I have loathed. I credit my 500 Days Of Film List for that - a list that I curated by looking at the reviews of the film critics and movie organisations I most admire.
The films below have made it onto this list for a variety of reasons. Few have no redeeming features. Some films have merit but are just not for me - not my cup of tea.
And that is just fine - it would be a boring world if we all agreed on every film. So, if you feel differently about any film listed below, do let me know (via Facebook or Twitter or the comments section below).
I remain open minded and, more than anything, love a good ole fashioned movie debate!
So here goes… my Top 10 Worst Films Of The First Half Of My 500 Days Of Film Challenge:
I can hardly believe it but I have reached the halfway point of my 500 Days Of Film Challenge!
I have now watched and reviewed 250 films - and enjoyed every one (well, every one apart from a few notable exceptions).
I am often asked how I created my 500 film list.
I created this list by looking back over the past five (or so) years and noting down the best critically received film of each week.
I then added a few films from further back that I either couldn’t believe I hadn’t seen or that I hadn’t seen for ages.
Before long I had a list of over 300 films. I figured that, once I started my film challenge, I could add new film releases to my list and get to my 500 total with ease.
I have to admit that, at the start, my film challenge seemed… well, pretty challenging. Why on earth was I doing this? And why had I told everyone that I was doing this?
However, I soon found my groove and, since then, this challenge has been a complete pleasure. I don’t know what I would do now if I didn’t have a film to look forward to every evening.
Thanks to my list, I now feel confident that every film I watch will be interesting and worth my time (again with a few notable exceptions). I may not love every movie but I will usually appreciate something about each film.
The 88th Annual Academy Awards take place on Sunday 28th February and today we found out who had been nominated.
Tom Hardy was a surprise choice (but deserving I think) as best supporting actor for his role in The Revenant. That category certainly is a tough one.
It was a good event for The Martian too - with a total of seven nominations including best picture and best leading actor (Matt Damon).
A round of applause greeted the news that Sylvester Stallone had been nominated as best supporting actor. There is a good feeling about his performance in Creed - particularly as he has just won the Golden Globe.
I was so pleased to see Charlotte Rampling nominated (BAFTA what were you thinking?) for her superb part in 45 Years. However, I'm still thinking that this award will go to Brie Larson for her phenomenal performance in Room.
I was also glad to see Lenny Abrahamson nominated in the best director category for Room. They say that you can only inspire a stunning performance from a child actor if you have a top notch director.
I would have also liked to see Jacob Tremblay get a nomination for Room. However, he's got time I guess.
The Oscar nominations were not without controversy. Once again, the awards will be dominated by white people. This has not gone down well... understandably.
Idris Elba was not nominated for his powerful performance in Beasts Of No Nation. Will Smith, thought to be a strong contender for his role in Concussion, also failed to get a nomination.
Meanwhile, Carol did well in terms of nomination numbers (six at my count) but missed out in the coveted best picture and best director categories. Quentin Tarantino's The Hateful 8 was also absent from many categories.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens may have missed out on a best picture nomination but it still came away with five other nominations.
The 2016 Golden Globes took place last night all thanks to the members of the Hollywood Foreign Press (no I haven't a clue either).
Survivalist revenge drama The Revenant won the night with awards including best motion picture: drama, best director (Alejandro G. Iñárritu) and best actor in a drama (Leonardo DiCaprio).
It was also a good night for The Martian - winning for best comedy film and the award for best actor in a comedy (Matt Damon).
Meanwhile, Brie Larson won the award for best actress in a drama for her outstanding performance in Room and Jennifer Lawrence won the best comedy actress award for Joy.
Son of Saul won best documentary and Inside Out won the award for best animation,.
Here are the awards in full along with those all important acceptance speeches (Ricky Gervais' intro is below also!):
The nominations for the 2016 EE British Academy Film Awards (BAFTA) were announced this morning.
Steven Spielberg's Bridge Of Spies and Todd Haynes' Carol have nine nominations each. The Revenant has been nominated in eight categories.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens has four nominations.
The BAFTA Awards take place on Sunday 14th February - shortly before the 2016 Oscars, which are to be held on Sunday 28 February. Oscar nominations will be announced on 14 January.