THE FREDDIE MERCURY STORY: WHO WANTS TO LIVE FOREVER?

Poffy The Cucumber

Fantastic Gigs and Frightful Wigs. I don’t have any aspirations to live to 70. I’ve lived a full life and if I’m dead tomorrow, I don’t give a damn! I really have, y’know, done it all. — Freddie Mercury. Firstly, the title is all wrong. THE FREDDIE MERCURY STORY: WHO WANTS TO LIVE FOREVER? is not a biopic about Freddie … Read More

FIRST MAN

Poffy The Cucumber

First Maudlin Man. That’s one small step for man; one giant leap for Mankind. — Neil Armstrong, Apollo 11, June 1969. FIRST MAN is a strange piece of dramatic fiction. Not a biopic; not a historical document. Following Neil Armstrong on his pioneering Apollo 11 Moon landing, instead of a science-driven, or politics-driven docudrama, movie attempts to find an emotional … Read More

FANTASTIC FOUR 1994

Poffy The Cucumber

It’s Knobberin’ Time! Four scientist friends are bathed in the rays of a meteor and attain fantastic powers, none of which was the power to say no to appearing in this dungheap film. FANTASTIC FOUR is a contractual mishap, hurriedly made so that Constantin Film could retain the rights to the Fantastic Four comicbook characters from Marvel Comics. Marvel, in … Read More

THE FOUNDER 2016

Poffy The Cucumber

The Ham-Burglar. THE FOUNDER, the story of how Ray Kroc stole the McDonald’s brand out from under its actual founders and turned it into the biggest fast food chain on the globe, is simultaneously inspiring and horrifying – like a meal from McDonald’s. Written by Robert Siegel (based on the amazing true story) and directed like a lean burger by … Read More

FRANK 2014

Poffy The Cucumber

Good Head. Music, experimentation, death, disappointment, fear, surrogate family, unfulfillable longing. A musician’s life for me… FRANK, a quirky dramedy centering on an avant-garde rock band and its offbeat leader in particular, is – unlike many movies of its musical ilk – not about seeking success through stardom, but fulfillment through creation. We meet keyboardist Jon (Domhnall Gleeson), trying in … Read More

FINDING DORY

Poffy The Cucumber

FINDING DORY is lost at sea. She worked so well as a supporting character in FINDING NEMO (2003) that Pixar spins off Dory’s origin story in FINDING DORY – and only ends up highlighting what a horrifying brain disease she suffers from. Dory (voiced by Ellen DeGeneres), a blue tang fish with short term memory loss, first appeared in the … Read More

FAST & FURIOUS

Poffy The Cucumber

Too Furious To Act. FAST & FURIOUS is a dark horse in the F&F canon. This 4th film in the franchise is the least involving, as two men go after the same drug lord from different angles – one from the law, one from the street. Filled with pointless vignettes and exhilarating-yet-idiotic street racing, I lost interest as soon as … Read More

FAST & FURIOUS 7

Poffy The Cucumber

The Stupidous Furious. The FURIOUS franchise is TWILIGHT for men. — YouTube comment. Vin Diesel underacts his way through a car-slut thug-fest that loses focus in its last act because – Paul Walker. What do you think of when someone asks you NOT to think of Paul Walker? Answer: Paul Walker. This is the case in FURIOUS 7, where it … Read More

FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE

Poffy The Cucumber

From Russia With Leering. James Bond 007 returns in FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE, the first sequel to the first ever James Bond movie, DR. NO. And it is… uh… I don’t know how to break it to you Bond fans, but try to sit through this movie in 2016 and let me know how many times you flinch from the … Read More

FAST FIVE

Poffy The Cucumber

America’s Fastest Crime Family. Detective Hobbs advises his team of cops on capturing Dom Toretto and his gang: “Above all else, we don’t ever, ever let them get into cars.” Is anyone hearing how this sounds? Uh, sir, are the cars magic? “No.” Well, uh, why can’t we just shoot them with rocket launchers if they get into cars? “Just … Read More

FAST & FURIOUS 6

Poffy The Cucumber

The Faster the Stupider. Even if the car-porn franchise FAST AND FURIOUS is not your cup of transmission oil, you’ve gotta admit, the movies are some of the best exponents of their gearhead genre. FAST & FURIOUS 6 reunites Dom Toretto’s gang of gearheads against a Euro mercenary intent on stealing some military McGuffin that would make it easier for … Read More

THE FAST AND THE FURIOUS: TOKYO DRIFT

Poffy The Cucumber

Driving Mister Dazey. The owners of THE FAST AND THE FURIOUS franchise drive themselves into a ditch in this third film, by overhauling their original cast in THE FAST AND THE FURIOUS: TOKYO DRIFT. The story is simple and stupid, like its lead character Sean Boswell (Lucas Black, the discount Paul Walker, with zero gravitas and even less acting prowess, … Read More

THE FAST AND THE FURIOUS

Poffy The Cucumber

Brahs in Cars. A beautiful undercover cop falls for a muscled street racer in the bromosexual actioner THE FAST AND THE FURIOUS. Paul Walker is the beautiful cop, Brian O’Connor, and she’s been sent to infiltrate a gang of street racers who are suspected of daring highway robberies of truckloads of DVD players. (Yeah, it’s 2001, when people cared about … Read More

FRUITVALE STATION

Poffy The Cucumber

An Underprivileged Life Against Cowards With Guns. Unarmed black man shot fatally in the back by cop. It’s not just a movie. It’s reality. Over and over again. This injustice has become so common in United States culture that there is an undeclared war between African-American men (who continue to be black) and cops (who continue to be cowards). FRUITVALE … Read More

FANTASTIC FOUR 2015

Poffy The Cucumber

Mo’ dark, mo’ fantastic. I honestly don’t see the problem with the maligned 2015 reboot FANTASTIC FOUR, the dark rendition of Marvel’s longest-running superhero team (first published 1961). Good acting, strong themes (involving family, alienation and teamwork), and an eerie discomfiture surrounding the unearthly “powers” of the protagonists, rather than blind, childish, do-gooder acceptance. And featuring the barbecue-rib guy from … Read More

FIFTY SHADES OF GREY

Poffy The Cucumber

Fifty Shades of Vanilla. A porn movie for chicks. Which means it’s not really porn, and barely even registers as erotic. FIFTY SHADES OF GREY is supposedly about a dominant-submissive relationship. But it’s what a dominant-submissive relationship looks like to someone who knows nothing about dominant-submissive relationships. Mr. Grey (Jamie Dornan) is a young, good-looking billionaire (only a few bicep-curls … Read More

THE FLY

Poffy The Cucumber

Insect Aside. A scientist accidentally mixes his genes with a fly – and DOESN’T become a superhero! THE FLY is classic science fiction poetry in motion: Tampering in God’s Domain and Paying the Price / Radiation Causing Monstrosity / Aloof Scientist Experiments on Himself / Forbidden Technology must be Wiped Out… An intriguing and terrifying thriller, from the days when … Read More

FOUR BROTHERS

Poffy The Cucumber

Four Muthas. Four adopted brothers – two white, two black – reunite in the hood to hunt down their mother’s killer. And make a racial bonding statement. FOUR BROTHERS stars Mark Wahlberg as Bobby Mercer, one of four “brothers” (unrelated street kids adopted by kindly Fionnula Flanagan when she couldn’t find homes for them), all returning to their Detroit haunt … Read More

THE FAMILY

Poffy The Cucumber

Familiar Famiglia. An American mobster in the Witness Protection Program is plopped into the midst of a bucolic French village with his wife and two kids. Cue fish out of water tale, where the fish is a piranha. THE FAMILY stars Robert DeNiro as Giovanni Manzoni aka Fred Blake, a mafia don who has ratted on his crime syndicate and … Read More

THE FLASH 2014

Poffy The Cucumber

The Wimping Of A Superhero. It’s turning into Superhero TV Funhouse over here…There’s ARROW (Green Arrow) and GOTHAM (young Batman), there’s AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D, and various shows where people are endowed with “super” powers; now CW brings us THE FLASH in scintillating crimson backwash. Slogan: “The Making of a Superhero.” But the story itself wimps out the Fastest Man Alive … Read More