Tag Archives: spy

FILM REVIEW: A Simple Favour (2018)

Based on the book of the same name by Darcey Bell, A Simple Favour sees Stephanie Smothers (Anna Kendrick), a mummy blogger, trying to raise her young son (Joshua Satine) on her own while keeping up an Energiser bunny-like enthusiasm. Despite her willingness to get involved she hasn’t made many friends, and quickly becomes enamoured by one of the other mothers, the mysterious Emily Nelson (Blake Lively). After sharing a series of playdates where they drink cocktails and exchange secrets, Emily asks Stephanie for a simple favour while her husband (Henry Golding) is away: to pick up her son (Ian Ho) from school. A few days later, there’s still no sign of Emily. Continue reading FILM REVIEW: A Simple Favour (2018)


The Boss (Ben Falcone, 2016)

Melissa McCarthy.  Who knows which way a film with her name on it will go. You always get a sense of what you’re going to get, but you can never quite trust whether the overall product will be any good. For every Bridesmaids, there’s an Identity Thief. For every Spy, there’s a Tammy.  One would hope that The Boss would find a place among her better work, but early signs weren’t positive. McCarthy’s husband Ben Falcone directs and co-writes (with McCarthy), after his less than successful debut with Tammy. Kristen Bell co-stars, and if there’s anyone who matches McCarthy in the “will-it-or-won’t-it-be-good” stakes, it’s her. (For every Veronica Mars there’s a When in Rome, for every Frozen there’s a You Again, for every adorable reaction to a sloth there’s a role in Movie 43). Then there was the trailer which involved McCarthy working Bell’s bra like a puppet master. Expectations were not high. Continue reading FILM REVIEW: The Boss

FILM REVIEW: Zoolander 2

Zoolander 2 (Ben Stiller, 2016)

It seems that good American comedies are hard to come by these days. In the last year, with the exception of a few female-driven vehicles (Spy, Trainwreck, Sisters), big screen comedies tend to rely on gross-out humour, are offensive, or just aren’t that funny. But every now and then you’ll find a gem. The original Zoolander (2001) remains to this day one of my favourite comedies. With an outrageous premise (a male model is brainwashed to assassinate the President of Malaysia) the film remains quote-worthy to this day (“What is this? A centre for ants?”). While fans of that movie were excited about its sequel, trepidation abounded – could it possibly be as good as the first one? Continue reading FILM REVIEW: Zoolander 2


Spy (Paul Feig, 2015)

If you’re not already on the Melissa McCarthy bandwagon then you should promptly jump on, because the woman is hilarious. But unfortunately, her billing never comes with a guarantee of a quality film, as her film choices tend to be hit and miss. For every Bridesmaids, there is an Identify Thief, and even her recent foray into screenwriting was not well-received, with Tammy bombing at the box-office after multiple changes to its scheduled release. All is not lost though, as she is back with a vengeance in Spy, where she reteams with director Paul Feig (Bridesmaids, The Heat) for some ball-busting espionage fun. Continue reading FILM REVIEW: Spy

FILM REVIEW: Kingsman: The Secret Service

Kingsman: The Secret Service (Matthew Vaughn, 2014)

Some might meet the news of yet another comic book adaptation with an exasperated sigh, but there’s not a superhero in sight this time around. Following on from the subversive Kick-Ass, director Matthew Vaughn teams up once more with screenwriter Jane Goldman to bring another Mark Millar work to the big screen. Kingsman: The Secret Service may best be described as a mash-up of James Bond and The Cornetto Trilogy (Shaun of the Dead/Hot Fuzz/At the World’s End). The best of both worlds, it is espionage in the most hilariously violent fashion imaginable. Continue reading FILM REVIEW: Kingsman: The Secret Service