Film

TMINE reviews: 15 different movies, including Belfast and Hedgehog in the Fog

In which Nat talks briefly about the movies she’s been watching this week for no particular reason and that probably don’t warrant proper reviews, but hey? Wouldn’t it be nice if we all chatted about them anyway?

Finally! Finally, I have time to write something!

That’s basically me, to every person who pays me, every time I’ve tried to write anything at all for the past month.

It’s going to be a quick trip through all the screens of the TMINE Multiplex this week, almost like when you’re trying to find your screen but you can’t see the number so end up going to each screen in turn to find the movie you booked.

So here we go! In no particular order at all, here’s what currently showing in the TMINE Multiplex.

  1. Броненосец «Потёмкин» (Battleship Potemkin) (1926)
  2. A Few Good Men (1992)
  3. Wasp (2003)
  4. Dave (1993)
  5. The American President (1995)
  6. Down With Love (2003)
  7. The Love Witch (2016)
  8. The Shawshank Redemption (1994)
  9. Belfast (2021)
  10. Time is Up (2021)
  11. Regarding Henry (1991)
  12. Bridget Jones’ Diary (2001)
  13. The Tragedy of Macbeth (2021)
  14. Stanley Kubrick: A Life in Pictures (2001)
  15. Ёжик в тумане (Hedgehog in the Fog) (1976)

That’s right: 15 different movies! Holy flerkens, I really wish I had more time to write reviews than it turns out, post-Covid, that I have.

Anyway, let’s see if we can find the screen we want together. Hopefully, we won’t end up seeing Sing 2 by accident.

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US TV

What have you been watching? Including Severance and Bel-Air

It’s “What have you been watching?”, your chance to recommend to fellow TMINE readers anything you’ve been watching this week

It’s been Half-Term here in the UK, which means I’ve been taking some time off. Which was nice. But never fear, not only did a load of TV shows have the same idea, I still managed to watch a couple of new shows, as well as finish off two of the regulars

But first…

…three shows I didn’t manage to get around to watching

From (US: Epix) only started last night, so I’ve not had time to watch it yet. It doesn’t sound (or even look) very good, though, so I might skip it.

“In a nightmarish town in middle America that traps everyone who enters, unwilling residents fight to stay alive and search for a way out. But they are plagued by the threats of the surrounding forest including terrifying nocturnal creatures.”

The Fear Index (UK: Sky Atlantic) is another one of those glossy transatlantic things with big(ish) US stars that Sky makes (cf Riviera). It’s based on the Robert Harris novel of the same name and “is set in a period of roughly 24 hours from the 6 May 2010 – the date of the British general election and the Flash Crash. It follows the interactions of a group of employees at Hoffmann Investment Technologies, a fictional hedge fund operating in Geneva.”

Couldn’t. Be. Bothered.

I mean, generic or what? Although the trailer did make me hope that The Champions would show up.

Inventing Anna (Netflix), on the other hand, is simply a show I didn’t get around to watching, but which I really do hope to watch when I have time, as it stars the rather awesome Julia Garner as the eponymous Anna (The Americans, Ozark). It’s also based on a true story. So fingers crossed for next week.

“A journalist investigates the case of Anna Delvey, the Instagram-legendary heiress who stole the hearts and money of New York elites.”

The regulars

Superman & Lois (US: The CW; UK: BBC One/iPlayer) were clearly taking a couple of weeks off together to have some quality time away from their annoying teenagers, so that just left The Peacemaker and The Book of Boba Fett for me to enjoy.

The Book of Boba Fett (Disney+) managed to have a reasonably thrilling and at times touching finale, filled with fights and Boba Fett for once. Plenty of Mandalorian and tiny Yoda, though, which given the season has only been seven episodes and they’ve been the focus of three of them, hasn’t really given Boba much to do.

However, by the end of it, it was all feeling a bit… childish, you know? Sure, it’s Star Wars, but honestly, with the biker gangs, the tired western clichés, baby Yoda, the big beastie, etc, it just all felt like a kids show. I might not bother with season 2, but we’ll see.

The Peacemaker ended with a couple of not bad episodes. Some decently amusing dialogue, some really daft helmets (you’ll understand when you see it) and some decent plot twists, plus a really awesome cameo or two right at the end meant it was definitely worth the viewing time. But it felt like after a really excellent start, the show ran a little out of the bizarre steam that made the first couple of episodes so different and exciting. John Cena remained awesome throughout and Freddie Stroma’s switch from pretty boy (UnREAL, Time After Time) to idiotic psychopath was a real eye-opener. But I no longer feel totally comfortable recommended the whole season as a must-see. Maybe the first couple of episodes.

After the jump, though, let’s talk about the new shows I did watch: Severance (AppleTV+) and Bel Air (US/UK: Peacock). And I’m really glad I watched both, you’ll be glad to hear.

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Film

What Nat added to her streaming queues this week, including Passing and Врач

All the movies added to streaming services in the past week that Natya has added to her watchlists and hopes to watch. But might not

I’m really going to get better at this. Promise. Just in case you were wondering, I have actually managed to watch all these films since I last reviewed anything:

  • Belfast (2022)
  • The Tragedy of Macbeth (2022)
  • A Few Good Men (1992)
  • Wasp (2003)
  • Dave (1993)
  • The American President (1995)
  • Down With Love (2003)
  • The Love Witch (2016)
  • The Shawshank Redemption (1994)

See! I’m not shirking!

You’ll notice, I really, really hope, that at least two of those – okay, I admit it, just two – have featured here, so I’m not leading you astray, honest.

Let’s stick to one movie per service, though. Is that okay?

Netflix

Passing (2022)

In 1920s New York City, a black woman finds her world up-ended when her life becomes intertwined with a former childhood friend who’s passing as white. Rebecca Hall’s feature directorial debut

Disney+

The King’s Man (2021)

In the early years of the 20th century, the Kingsman agency is formed to stand against a cabal plotting a war to wipe out millions. Yes, it’s a prequel to the Kingsman movies, all of which are now on Disney+.

Amazon

Time is Up (2021)

An accident will force Vivien and Roy to come to a stop and reclaim their lives, one minute at a time, and finally start living in a present that perhaps will prove to be more exciting than any predefined.

MUBI

Śniegu Już Nigdy Nie Będzie (Never Gonna Snow Again) (2020)

The Eastern European masseur Zhenia possesses an almost magical gift. Working in a gated community in Poland, he quickly becomes a guru-like figure to his wealthy clients. However, Zhenia’s background remains a mystery—leaving the residents to wonder what secrets he might be carrying with him.

Klassiki

Врач (Doctor) (2016)

In his deeply personal directorial debut, Gosha Kutsenko explores the high-wire life of a neurosurgeon. Dr. Yury Mikhailovich spends his day in and out of the operating theatre, with only brief interludes to comfort patients’ relatives. As he distracts himself from the realities of his job with multiple love affairs, he is haunted by one thought: is he truly saving lives, or just prolonging suffering? Dedicated to his mother, who lost a two-year battle with brain cancer, Doctor is at once a personal thank you to medical professionals, and an honest acknowledgement of the crushing responsibility that comes with this line of work.

iPlayer

In the Heat of the Night (1967)

Oscar-winning thriller about the bigoted sheriff in a small Mississippi cotton town who finds himself forced into collaboration with a black homicide expert from Philadelphia. 

Sparta, Mississippi is a small, quiet town broiling on a steamy September night. At the train station Virgil Tibbs, a solitary black man from out of town, is arrested for the murder of a rich northern industrialist. Police chief Gillespie has no experience of a murder inquiry and subjects Tibbs to a bigoted, insolent interrogation. But when Tibbs reveals himself to be a top city homicide cop, his is just the assistance Gillespie can do without.

Murderville
Streaming TV

What have you been watching? Including Reacher, Murderville and In From The Cold

It’s “What have you been watching?”, your chance to recommend to fellow TMINE readers anything you’ve been watching this week

I think I might – might – be getting the hang of this ‘watching TV’ thing. I actually watched some new shows this week, including some that were on my list from last week and one complete season of a show, too. Is anyone impressed apart from me? Probably not. And I also hope not.

But first…

…a show I couldn’t bring myself to watch

Suspicion (AppleTV+) might at first glance look like something I’d have watched, given it was on AppleTV+ and stars Uma Thurman, Noah Emmerich and a whole bunch of actors from US TV shows you’ll probably recognise.

However, it fell foul of a very important new TMINE viewing rule: no more UK TV. I might break this at some point, probably when Rusty starts Doctor Who again or if that Life on Mars sequel ever sees the light of day. But honestly, life is otherwise too short to be wasting it on watching UK TV.

And Suspicion may be on an American streaming network and be based on the pretty good Israeli show כפולים (False Flag), but it is clearly British, since it’s set in London and even the guys you saw on those US TV shows have been secretly British this whole time. (And I’ve seen both seasons of the Israeli version anyway.)

For those of you with greater tolerance for the inexcusable, here’s the plot description and a trailer.

“Five people – three men and two women – have their lives turned upside down after being identified by London police as suspects in the kidnapping and subsequent disappearance of American media mogul Katherine Newman’s son Leonardo.”

The regulars

The Book of Boba Fett (Disney+) was yet again, another episode of The Mandalorian. My wife is getting very bored of this fact. I’m getting very worried about Temuera Morrison’s health – is he okay? This is like when they had to introduce Young Hercules in Hercules: The Legendary Journeys to cover up for the fact that Kevin Sorbo was injured – or when they bodyswapped Callisto and Xena on Xena: Warrior Princess when Lucy Lawless fell off her horse.

Anyway, the producers dialled up the awesome to compensate, bringing back not just jedi master Rosario Dawson, obvious Western reference Timothy Olyphant and the Mandalorian himself, but also a very, very spookily rejuvenated Mark Hamill to re-enact the best bits of Empire Strikes Back with tiny Yoda. It was a whole bunch of Squee for Star Wars fans and even I couldn’t help but go wow! But it is reliably reinforcing the fact that Boba Fett’s story isn’t either that interesting or getting a lot of service in his own show. Worrying.

The Peacemaker was less entertaining this week, unfortunately, perhaps because it was the most serious of all the episodes so far. But also perhaps because it was the most unremarkable in lots of ways. I mean “Eagly is hardcore, man!” will stay with me for a while and there were lots of lovely silly bits, but nothing that stood out in quite the way earlier episodes did.

Meanwhile, in Superman & Lois (US: The CW; UK: BBC One), it was more of the same as last week in what was basically a bridging episode to get us from point A to point C, by filling in the gaps that people who hadn’t realised it was (spoiler alert) Bizarro last week getting it spelled out for them this week. Good fights but everything to do with Lois Lane’s sister (Jenna Dewan – reprising her role from Supergirl, I understand. Where’s m*therf*ck*ng Supergirl, though? She’s not dead – I checked!) made me roll my eyes a lot. Seriously, what bizarrely insanely high standards of journalism are local papers expecting in the US? Weirdos.

After the jump, though, let’s talk about the new shows I’ve been watching and completing entire episodes and even seasons of: Reacher (Amazon Prime), Murderville (Netflix) and In From the Cold (Netflix).

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US TV

What have you been watching? Including How I Met Your Father, The Afterparty and Single Drunk Female

It’s “What have you been watching?”, your chance to recommend to fellow TMINE readers anything you’ve been watching this week

Sorry for the slight absence. Januaries hey? Too much work, too little time. But I have been watching some TV at least, since we’ve been getting a decent number of new shows.

First off, some shows I thought I might watch but never got round to

On Netflix, there’s The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window and In From the Cold. They turned up on Friday and I simply didn’t have any time to start them. The former stars Kristen Bell: “Mixing wine, pills, casseroles and an overactive imagination, Anna obsesses over a hunky neighbor across the street and witnesses a murder. Or did she?”

Also on Netflix is In From the Cold, which I might farm out to our resident movie reviewer, assuming I can get her to watch TV, as it’s “Exposed as an ex-Russian spy, an American single mom must juggle family life and unique shape-shifting skills in a battle against an insidious enemy.” Shape-shifting skills? Hmmm.

There’s also The Gilded Age (US: HBO Max; UK: Sky Atlantic), which is Julian Fellowes’ new show. I never watched Downton Abbey (UK: ITV), and something like it set in America doesn’t float my boat at all, so I decided not to bother.

Secondly, some shows I started watching but couldn’t bring myself to finish

Promised Land (US: ABC), on the hand, I sat down to watch and it was about five minutes before I thought to myself: “Haven’t I just watched this show?”

The plot: “Two Latinx families vie for wealth and power in California’s Sonoma Valley.”

I mean, a soapy show about winegrowers? That’s The Kings of Napa (US: OWN). There are some differences, particularly around a whole ‘Illegals’ plotline about who’s got the right papers and who hasn’t, and this is played a little straighter than The Kings of Napa. There’s also a subtly different plotline about what new product the next generation wants to get the older generation to sell: The Kings of Napa went with dessert wine, while Promised Land decided to go with wines with funny names and labels designed to appeal to young people. Otherwise, basically the same show. And they both bored me.

The regulars

I’ve been keeping up with the regulars. The Book of Boba Fett (Disney+) has been reliably interesting, if not compelling, with Boba Fett’s backstory appeasing Star Wars and being moderately entertaining, while the more forward-looking original storyline about his efforts to take over Jabba’s old empire proving to be a lot duller.

However, the latest episode was more technically speaking an episode of The Mandalorian, given Boba doesn’t make an appearance and there’s barely a cameo appearance from anyone else from The Book of Boba Fett, all while we spend our time finding out what The Mandalorian has been up to since the events of the second season, and setting the scene for the third season. It’s a little worrying that the fight scenes and plotting are visibly better than Boba Fett‘s, although there’s already so much mythos around The Mandalorian that it’s feeling hard to keep up with all it and not be bored by sub-section 5, para 4 of The Mandalorian Way or whatever being the main focus of the show. Did you get that dark sabre through legitimate fight or was it given to you? Did you take your helmet off? If so, at what point and in front of whom. Hmm, let me check para 5 to see…

You get the idea.

Can we just have fights and fun instead, please?

Meanwhile, I’ve caught up with all the episodes of The Peacemaker, which has been reliably stupid (in a good way) and entertaining. Our team is sort of coming together and the addition of Freddie Stroma’s Vigilante has added more fun to everything. It’s incredibly daft but there’s usually one side-burstingly funny moment or 10 each episode, and Cena’s tough but soft dick of a superhero is a magnificent creation and pointed satire for our time.

And in Superman & Lois (US: The CW; UK: BBC One), we’ve had the usual ‘flipped Smallville‘ approach to storytelling – yes, it’s a show for people who grew up with Smallville but are now parents with their own kids – with the abject tedium of the teenage relationships the B-plots and the planet-threatening villains and the difficulties of being a parent the A-plots. I’m quite enjoying what their doing with the supporting adult cast this season, with Lana, Steel and Lois’ dad all getting some quite intriguing and different stuff from the usual.

But oh joy! After teasing us a possible planet-killer for most of the season, we finally get the revelation that we’re at least going to meet (spoiler alert) Bizarro – loved the end title of the latest episode. That actually made me burst out laughing.

Anyway, it’s all still thrilling and moving in alternate measures, so everyone should be watching.

After the jump, though, let’s talk about the new shows I’ve been watching and completing entire episodes of: Single Drunk Female (US: Freeform), The Afterparty (AppleTV+) and How I Met Your Father (US: Hulu)

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