From Dusk Till Dawn

Watching this cult classic again, thanks to being reminded by Ryan Hollinger.

Emmy says:
Complex characters with stunning visuals. Love how the plot gets hijacked and everything goes crazy. There’s a lot of depth to this movie, as well as a lot of blood and body parts. Definitely a great watch. 9/10.

Jeff says:
I loved this movie when it first came out, I love this movie now. Interestingly, there are still things I notice now that I missed previously. There is a lot to unpack for a simple grindhouse film, if you’re in the mood to, but it’s also delightful on a straight-forward visceral level. It’s been years since I last watched this, but I still remember most of the dialogue. The music is sensational, and the effects even stand up to today’s lower budget grindhouse effects. Just great fun, in every way. 10/10.

IMDb

Die Hard with a Vengeance

Emmy says:
A visual spectacle, using bullets and blood to great effect. I think the script writers had a wonderful time with all the riddles and banter. A lot of fun. 8/10.

Jeff says:
I love this movie so much. It is far and away my favourite Die Hard film. It is a perfect mix of cop procedural, action adventure, and suspense. Each step makes sense (in the end) and the characters feel realistic. Entertaining side characters (hi Jerry!) that don’t feel forced even when they are convenient. Jeremy Irons is brilliant and Bruce Willis continues to live the role of McClane. 10/10.

IMDb

Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw

Emmy says:
This movie is ridiculous and leans into it full-tilt. The opening sequence is beautiful with the POV character. The banter is rapid fire and pointed, and left me laughing. The music was awesome. Great story with physics from another universe. So much fun with vehicles and weapons while still including heart. 10/10.

Jeff says:
This is dumb fun. The franchise has turned into a parody of itself at this point. Strangely though, it works. The action is spectacular, and wholly unbelievable: literally, I do not believe that half of what I saw is actually possible. Some of the tech choices baffle me, as an opponent could be just as formidable without what we were actually shown as “guidance”. If you want an augmented human, watch Upgrade, this was a let down on that front. Once again for this franchise the villain is where this movie is let down most, but once again it doesn’t really matter. This was a riot from start to finish and had some truly epic sequences regardless of issues with reality. 9/10.

IMDb

Fate of the Furious

Film 8 in preparation for Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw

Emmy says:
This went right to the ridiculous. Turning rogue really doesn’t work with Toretto and keeping the reason from the audience makes it worse. Dodging around God’s Eye becomes interesting, but how was that meeting ever set up? Too much tech and hacking. Cool cars are a huge casualty and become a one-liner. I’m not even going to mention that sub. 5/10.

Jeff says:
Over the top, bad physics, high-tech hand-waving away plot contrivances … this had it all (and not in a good way). I understand having to raise the stakes, but at this point the only thing left is racing in low earth orbit. Please tell me that’s not coming next. A let-down for the series, story-wise, but still entertaining despite the problems. Baby Toretto is a star though. 7/10.

IMDb

Furious Seven

Film 7 in preparation for Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw

Emmy says:
Insanity. Just pure insanity. A rollercoaster of a ride with crazy heights. Hilarious fun with an amazing tribute at the end. 8/10.

Jeff says:
The films continue to top themselves, but are self-aware enough to point out the insanity. Some of the parts are starting to wear (what exactly is the point of Roman?) and other components are due for a rotation before they fall off, but it’s still fun and the new characters are interesting additions. A fitting final ride for Paul Walker. 8/10.

IMDb

Furious 6

Film 6 in preparation for Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw

Emmy says:
Gripping story with some fast banter. Cars are still amazing. Scratch that. Vehicles are incredible! Sympathetic characters really drew me in. 9/10.

Jeff says:
High-powered excitement that hasn’t yet run out of ways to make driving fast, and pretty cars, a thing. At this point, we’re here for the hi-jinks and the characters – and by now the characters are our family too. Loses hurt more, and gains feel all the sweeter. Still, the villains are under-developed and almost irrelevant apart from getting us to the next spectacle (which is, of course, awesome). 8/10.

IMDb

Fast Five

Film 5 in preparation for Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw

Emmy says:
So much fun! I’m loving the turn to heist this franchise has taken without skimping on car chase choreography. I do miss the straight races, although I laughed so much I almost didn’t notice. 9/10.

Jeff says:
How to shoe-horn cars into a movie franchise that’s moving away from being about cars? This one does well enough (good sequences, good reasons for the cars) but I fear I know what’s coming: “don’t let them get into a car” is sort of foretelling. Still, it was great to see characters from all four previous films getting good screen time (although the cast list is getting ridiculous). I have some small issues with choices being made by some characters (Hobbs mostly) but the new locale, interesting plot devices and great chemistry between the cast makes the ride worth it. 8/10.

IMDb

Fast & Furious

Film 4 in preparation for Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw

Emmy says:
Great story and character development. Less focus on the cars, still brilliant choreography for the few chase scenes. Fun 8/10.

Jeff says:
I found this film disappointing. It was still good, but I was disappointed nonetheless. I think the problem for me was that this is a retread of the first movie when we’ve just enjoyed the new model (being The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift). Still good sequences, but watching these back to back leaves me wanting more from each instalment. 7/10.

IMDb

The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift

Film 3 in preparation for Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw

Emmy says:
A brilliant movie of a different style of racing. Gorgeous cars once again, and shown at their best. Enchanting choreography of the car chases in the streets of Tokyo. Love it. 9/10.

Jeff says:
So far, my favourite of the series – and not just because of my fondness for Japan. Given the lack of returning characters, the filmmakers had to rely on story more. The difference between drift and quarter-mile is almost like comparing ballet with sprint, they are so different. There’s a reason why the director and writer kept being called back for later instalments. 9/10.

IMDb

2 Fast 2 Furious

Film 2 in preparation for Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw

Emmy says:
Great cars, not enough good shots of them. The CG internals looked off as did the warp speed NOS effects. Weak story line but an epic car scramble that kinda makes up for it. 7/10.

Jeff says:
What is the point of this series? Cars and the people who drive them. If they’re not behind a wheel, the story really doesn’t care about giving characters any depth which is a shame. Doubling down on the good, but losing it on the bad. Some very good set pieces though. 7/10.

IMDb

The Fast and the Furious

Film 1 in preparation for Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw

Emmy says:
Magnificent cars shot with great direction. Great story and action to accompany it. This plot always draws me in and I love it every time. 9/10.

Jeff says:
A great car movie, as it was designed to be. Built from the ground up around action and the main characters driving the narrative. This, unfortunately, leaves some of the story and side character development flat on the side of the road. Still, a fun ride and I’m revving for more. 8/10.

IMDb

American Assassin

Emmy says:
A gritty movie wading through the terrorist underbelly of the world. Lots of realistic combat and impact on the surrounding areas. 8/10.

Jeff says:
The trailer for this gives too much away, and at the same time is completely misleading in terms of what this film is actually about. Good action scenes, realistic damage and injury, and one of the best representations of (something that would be a spoiler) I think I’ve seen outside of a documentary. The plot is fairly predictable, but originality isn’t the point here. A good ride that manages to treat the formula well, rather than break from it. 8/10.

IMDb

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