Jurassic Park III

Jurassic Park III: Hmm…
★★

Jurassic Park III tells the story of a couple of people who go to Isla Sorna with a certain Dr Alan Grant and after landing on the island, the dinosaurs begin to, as you’d expect from said film, cause them a wee bit of trouble. Simply put, Jurassic Park is actually an OK sequel to its predecessors (which I didn’t rate highly in the first place to be honest), loud and nonsensical, and not really worthwhile the time it takes to watch as the plot goes nowhere and is filled with awful characters and an even worse end. In reality, dinosaurs are long extinct from the earth, much like this franchise should be but unfortunately, we’re due for another in 2014.

Image from: Jurassic Park III, (2001), [ONLINE]. Available here

PS: Pixelated Fridays should be back next Friday – Sooooo busy!

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Five Days of Simon Pegg: Day Five, Future Releases

Five Days of… Simon Pegg:
The fifth and final day of Simon Pegg takes a little look at some of Pegg’s upcoming films

The fifth and final day of Simon Pegg has arrived and with it I bring a poll. I’d like to gauge how much you enjoyed this featured series and what you would add or change, if anything. The initial aim of the series was to highlight some of my favourite actors/directors through reviews, news, what’s coming up and their history. I wanted to make the pieces more unique and individual, but getting the likes of an interview with such names is, I imagine, quite the tough task (not that it won’t stop me from trying, eh). So if you can suggest any ways to improve this, please say. If you enjoyed, please say why and hopefully I can build on it for next time. Anyway, time to check out Pegg’s future releases.

Star Trek: Into Darkness (2013)

The sequel to the hit feature Star Trek features Pegg as Scotty once again in what I’m sure will be a solid continuation in the rebooted franchise. I’d like to say it will be better, but with very little known about the actual film, not much can be said about that. My prediction is that we will be given another solid film with some typically punchy and funny lines, facial expressions and acts from Pegg, but nothing too amazing to warrant it being a five star feature.

Hector and the Search for Happiness (2014)

The comedy drama adapted from the book of the same name by Francois Lelord is about an eccentric psychiatrist from London who is on a quest to find out if happiness exists in the world; if it exists for him. The character traits seem to support the casting of Pegg as Hector – an eccentric character with ‘child-like curiosity’ goes on a journey that is said to be ‘colourful, exotic, dangerous and hysterical’. Also in the cast is Roasmund Pike and Christoper Plummer, two very talented actors. It’s bound to be an enjoyable, feel good film and hopefully it will surpass that of similar ‘feel good, adventure comedies’ before it, better than a three star film but never quite reaching the dizzy heights of five. I think I might just purchase the book now it has been brought to my attention.

The World’s End (2013)

My favourite in his upcoming list of activity is The Worlds End, so I thought best to leave it till last. One can make the prediction, based solely on ‘facts’ that this one will do well. The infamous trio of Wright, Pegg and Frost team up once again in their attempt to create another hit. The premise sounds like something straight out of university (or even straight out of a Simon Pegg movie, funnily enough) – a group of men reunite after twenty years in an attempt to complete an epic pub crawl that ends at The World’s End pub, something they failed to achieve last time out. But as they try to put together the past years gone by in their struggle to reach the elusive pub, they begin to realise that the real struggle is not only for their future, but humankinds.

Immediately it is apparent that that Pegg and co are working on this film just by the plot alone. It sounds fascinating and is currently being filmed right now. The pub names alone are enough to make me excited about this film, even if it and a basic plot is all I know. This is firmly stapled to the top of my list and my prediction is another five stars for this trio.

So in all I am expecting some good things to come from the comic genius that is Pegg. Here’s hoping things live up to expectations. Thank you all for checking out Five Days Of Simon Pegg, much appreciated the following it has gotten. Now, Mr Pegg, you have been firmly etched into my list of all time favourites.

Five Days of Simon Pegg: Day Four, Hot Fuzz & More

Five Days of… Simon Pegg:
Day Four sees us visit and review some of Pegg’s work, including the major follow up to Shaun of the Dead; Hot Fuzz

Hot Fuzz (2007)

The trio of Edgar Wright, Pegg and Frost were back for more movie mashup goodness in this mystery comedy full of action movie reference goodness.

When big time, perfect cop Nicholas Angel is transferred from London to a small village, he is embroiled in a hilarious mystery tale of deception and murrrrderr. It is quintessentially British, from the setting and the style to the reasons behind the whole mystery which makes this irresistible to anyone British. For everyone, though, there are enough movie references and jokes to ensure that whatever the setting, it would’ve been hilarious. So for British humour fans, this is a must watch.

It has a superb cast of misfit police officers, amongst others, from the supermarket trolley attendant to the flower shop lady. The camera and editing work is as ever superb, giving a real sense of mystery throughout in what is a fast paced action comedy full of loud action sequences. The unrelenting pace keeps this whole tale together, allowing the characters and story to develop into something that never lets off, ensuring you are never far from a laugh.

Each character gives something different and their roles are performed admirably by the superb cast. With clever dialogue and perfectly set up jokes, Hot Fuzz manages to satirise just about every action film known to man with ease whilst creating its own original and thoroughly enjoyable story.

Once Frost is introduced to Pegg, the murder ensues and things begin to get interesting. But it only gets better from here onward as more action and comical mayhem ensues before ending on a massive high. Equally as good as Shaun of the Dead, a must see for those fans of Pegg, comedy, action films and generally just those who want to be entertained.

Three Sentence Reviews of past Pegg: Moving on to the traditional three sentences, don’t want to be straying to far away from the norm, aye!

How to Lose Friends & Alienate People (2008)

An often funny look at the world of journalism that sees Sidney Young (Pegg) get the opportunity to work for a big US magazine, but his lasting impression isn’t a good one, especially when he alienates the one person that is meant to be helping him settle in. The laughs are somewhat regular thanks to Pegg and the portrayal of his character,  the plot provides an enjoyable, feel good film . It’s worth a watch if you’re a Pegg fan anyway, even if it’s only an average film.

Star Trek (2009)

From the start, Star Trek set out with a fast pace that was full of entertainment, wit and thrills, even for non fans of the series. Bringing the series back to life, JJ Abrams manages to create a feature that is significantly more exhilarating and enjoyable than those that came before it, making it fully accessible to the masses in an adventure that shows us how the crew of the USS Enterprise came together for their maiden voyage to stop an evil threat to mankind. Visually stunning, acting superb, comedic moments great and the plot fun makes this well worth a watch

Burke and Hare (2010)

Loosely based on the murders of the same name, Landis returns after 12 years away from directorial duties to produce what is meant to be a funny and entertaining flick. But, even with a solid cast and an interesting plot to work with, Burke and Hare fails to produce any really funny moments. Landis directs with a keen eye for detail, but it gives no real entertainment that meets any of his, nor Pegg’s other work.

Five Days Of Simon Pegg: Day Three, Shaun of the Dead & More

Five Days of… Simon Pegg:
Day Three sees us visit and review some of Pegg’s work, including the major hit Shaun of the Dead


Shaun of the Dead (2004)

Shaun of the Dead is clever and witty, somewhat reminiscent of Spaced and for a good reason – the film references are plain to see and the comedy is relevant and relatable whilst always being hilarious. Make no mistake, this is not a spoof. It makes no effort in trying to make fun out of the genre, but intends to be it’s own stand alone film with a unique plot.

Pegg co-writes alongside the producer of Spaced, Wright, to give us one of the best, most memorable comedy films in ages. It combines a multitude of genres; horror, thriller, romance and of course, comedy. This successful blend makes for one tasty shake.

It takes the time to develop the characters, giving us people we care about. It makes the moments all that bit more funny as well as enjoyable. And when we lose a character, we care. We have some form of attachment to them, unlike any other zombie horror. It is a simple premise, in reality, but original and filmed and acted out brilliantly.

Shaun, an underachieving and un-ambitious man lives a life without direction much to the annoyance of his co-workers, housemate and girlfriend. Life passes by blissfully for Shaun, his oblivious nature and lack of desire to do anything other than go to the Winchester pub with best pal Ed has seen his girlfriend, Liz, want out. When the zombies rise, Shaun seeks to rescue and repair his relationship with Liz and save his mother before it’s too late. Taking refuge in the dreaded Winchester, the group give us an enjoyable, zombie ridden, joke filled ride.

There is a lot of British humour here and one must remember that it is primarily a comedy, but there are violent moments too, all of which are enjoyable in their own way. The direction of this film is brilliantly crafted and undeniably smart, from the vinyl throwing scene to the jukebox scene, it was spot on.

Three Sentence Reviews of past Pegg: Moving on to the traditional three sentences, don’t want to be straying to far away from the norm, aye!

Big Nothing (2006)

Pegg’s first movie with Schwimmer features more film references that Pegg is known for in what is an original crime adventure that is blackly funny, smart and generally entertaining. It isn’t by any means the best of Simon Pegg who appears to be, with his American accent and working on a film with Schwimmer, trying to appeal to a wider audience, namely America, but the fact and point is, the two work well here to provide something that is interesting and fun and underrated. Featuring some good, funny moments and an enjoyable plot, this crime thriller comedy gives us something good to enjoy.

Run Fatboy Run (2007)

Run Fatboy Run has its moments, sometimes funny but always predictable. Pegg does well in his role, giving another good performance, but the film fails to deliver anything new in its plot or develop the characters properly in what really is quite a poorly written film. Schwimmer doesn’t exactly do a great job in directing the film, giving it no real individuality and I just left wishing it had more British humour – harsh at 2 stars maybe, but it’s poor and easy to forget.

Paul (2011)

Pegg joins up with Frost once again as two of the biggest sci-fi geeks go looking for aliens and find more than they bargained for; Paul. An alien who’s name gives the impression of normality, but an alien who takes the two on a fantastically enjoyable journey filled with superb performances and a thoroughly enjoyable plot. After earlier films such as Big Nothing, Run Fatboy Run and Mission Impossible, Pegg has finally been able to penetrate the American market but there is disappointment here, however, in that it wasn’t as comical as expected – but maybe that’s just me with high expectations because of their previous work – it felt like it was missing some of the Pegg/Frost humour from earlier work and it doesn’t help that I dislike Seth Rogen, either.

Five Days Of Simon Pegg: Day Two, Spaced

Five Days of… Simon Pegg: Spaced, the finest British comedy ever made


Spaced Review:

 

 

There is too much about Spaced that I liked to fit it into just three sentences, let alone what I loved about it. At the time, it was quite simply the best comedy around, though others may suggest the Royle Family as taking that title, as the awards of the time would suggest also. I beg to differ, however, and firmly believe this to be the best comedy and Simon Pegg’s greatest work to date.

Spaced was the brainchild of Simon Pegg and Jessica Stevenson and together they proved to be a team not to be messed with. Every line, every pop-culture reference and every joke was inch perfectly placed to create a hilarious journey that was both unpredictable and clever. Clever in a way that most people could never achieve, clever in a way that it makes all other comedies look poor. A simple premise filled with pure gold.

It doesn’t have your annoying, contrived audience applause – if you did, you wouldn’t hear much of what was being said. It is memorable, imaginative and original.

Spaced is, indeed, a one off. A British comedy that couldn’t be imitated. It’s intelligent script and well created characters are perfect. Every scene, from the opening to the closing, is unrivalled in its ability to make funny film references and hilarious jokes.

There is something here for almost everyone. One funny reference about a comic book may shoot past you, but there are plenty more that will have you in stitches. And when I say plenty, I mean plenty. So many so that when I re-watched it recently, I noticed and laughed at parts I hadn’t laughed at before because I now recognised the reference.

Spaced starts with Daisy (Stevenson) and Tim (Pegg), two twenty somethings who are both looking for a flat to rent. As strangers, they come up with an audacious plan to pretend to be a professional couple in order to rent a flat and from there onwards, we are treated to some hilarious adventures as we follow the pair through life. A particular favourite of mine personally was the paintball fight.

Asides from the two main characters, we are treated to a fantastic cast that is both peculiar and quirky. It included Pegg’s best friend, Nick Frost, as the army crazed Mike, Mark Heap as the hilarious artist Brian and Julia Deakin as Marsha, the drunk landlady and Colin the dog. British talent at its best.

So it was written with creativity and flair, but the acting was equally perfect: Fast and funny in a way that it reminded you of… well, you. It never wants to be something it isn’t and it achieves what it does want to be faultlessly. Still today it continues to be funny and its references are ever appropriate.

As I stated yesterday, in Day one of this series looking at Pegg, his greatest works have come alongside director Edgar Wright. It is his directing of this comedy classic that must not be forgotten, for this truly helped make this a memorable experience for everyone who watched.

So it might have been underappreciated at the time to some extent, but that doesn’t stop it from being one of the best British comedies ever made. The only downside, perhaps, is that it finished so soon. I need not talk about this show anymore, for you should, simply, check it out if you haven’t seen it already. If you’re a fan of Pegg, or even just any of the films he’s been in, it’s a must watch. If you’ve seen it, then you know what I’m talking about when I say this was fantastic…

And now for one of my favourite scenes. Ever. It may spoil it a little, but if you’re unsure on whether this is worth watching, this is a good way to see some of the humour involved.

I don’t remember laughing this hard since the day the episode aired. Pity they miss out the final line here… but I suppose it keeps it a surprise for those who have never seen it.

“It’s not a bedsit, it’s a flat!”

It was ultimately the thing that Pegg required, sending him forward into stardom, making the films we all know and love today. There were tidbits before and after, some good, but nothing compared to Spaced. I salute you, Pegg & co.

So coming up tomorrow is a look at some of Pegg’s film work, the main feature of which being Shaun of the Dead.

Five Days of Simon Pegg: Day One

Five Days of… Simon Pegg: The self confessed ‘nerd’ is a comic, actor, writer and producer as well as being the first person to feature on five days of



A Short history of Simon Pegg:

Welcome to Five Days of Simon Pegg. I hope you enjoy the new feature!

The man from Gloucestershire has had the pleasure to work with some of the biggest names in film, from Peter Jackson and Steven Speilberg (“just nerdy little film-makers”), Tom Cruise and Daniel Craig, Megan Fox and Kirsten Dunst. But Pegg’s career is, as far as I’m concerned, best described by the quality of work he, Edgar Wright and Nick Frost are a part of.

After Pegg graduated from the University of Bristol, he moved to London and made a somewhat successful career out of stand up comedy. He and Frost were introduced to each other by Pegg’s then girlfriend. The two immediately clicked after they impressed each other with their Chewbacca impressions and since then, it has turned into a partnership that has seen the two appear in several features together. Frankly, this Guardian interview does well to capture the love between the two of them.

The start of it all:

Pegg wrote, along with Jessica Hynes, the comedy tv series that was Spaced back in 1999(-2001). Co starring Nick Frost and directed by Edgar Wright, the series went on to be a classic. Three years after the series finished, Pegg had co-written with Wright and co-starred with Frost in the break-through film that was Shaun of the Dead (2004). The three worked again on the 2007 hit film Hot Fuzz, where Peter Jackson got himself a cameo role on screen as Santa.

Pegg has gone on to play big parts in Mission Impossible III and Ghost Protocol as Benji Dunn alongside Tom Cruise as well as playing Scotty in JJ Abrams Star Trek in 2009, where he is set to take on the role again in the upcoming sequel.

Amongst his growing portfolio of films, Pegg has starred in the 2007 film, Run Fatboy Run, in which he co-wrote too. As well as this, Pegg has starred alongside Kirsten Dunst as Sidney Young in the romantic comedy, How to Lose Friends & Alienate People. Burke & Hare (2010) came after that, shortly followed by Paul (2011) and after that, A Fantastic Fear of Everything in 2012

Amongst those on screen performances, Pegg has done voice over work in the latest two Ice Age films, The Adventures of TinTin as well as in the game Fable III.

What draws me to Pegg is his personality – and when him and Frost are together, it’s hard not to be entertained.

Coming up tomorrow is a look at the early years of Pegg’s career with a look and review of Spaced, before moving onto day three and four with reviews of two of my favourite Pegg films & a little look at some of the other work he has done before finally finishing by looking at what is coming up for Pegg in the future.

Images from: [ONLINE]here, here and here