Everything Everywhere All at Once (2022)

Dan Kwan and Daniel Scheinert directs Michelle Yeoh, Stephanie Hsu and Ke Huy Qua in this loopy action comedy where a put upon laundry owner can absorb the skills and lives of her alternate selfs – a new power she’ll have to utilise to save the universe, her family and finish her taxes.

I can see why this is so beloved but it does mistake density for sophistication. Not every wacky “other” world needs to be seen through to completion, as it indulgently makes the leeengthy ending patience stretching rather than bow tying. Having said that, it is always admirable to see a film so brimming with ideas – many are affectionately borrowed from other films – who would have expected Pixar and Wong Kar-wai spoofs to nestle so neatly together, Kubrick is also frequently referenced. If you like Douglas Adams then he also is a key influence. Yet it works best as a silly martial arts comedy. A resplendent Yeoh has still got the chops… and its is so so lovely to see Ke Huy Qua back on the big screen, and in such a warm, fun role. He goes at it full pelt, bless his heart, everyone does. I couldn’t stop smiling like a goon at nearly every moment and line he lands.

7

Perfect Double Bill: Eternal Sunshine Of the Spotless Mind (2004)

Check out my wife Natalie’s Point Horror blog https://cornsyrup.co.uk

We also do a podcast together called The Worst Movies We Own. It is available on Spotify or here https://letterboxd.com/bobbycarroll/list/the-worst-movies-we-own-podcast-ranking-and/

Tokyo Sonata (2008)

Kiyoshi Kurosawa directs Teruyuki Kagawa, Kyōko Koizumi and Yū Koyanagi in this Japanese drama where a family falls apart after their ‘salary man’ father hides his unemployment, just one of the secret lives they all start leading.

Not quite as magical as one of Kurosawa’s grounded but eerie horror flicks but hits many of the same notes. Most of the best moments are in the first half, certain subplots do go off the rails a little… Mum’s story in particular.

6

Perfect Double Bill: The Nest (2021)

Check out my wife Natalie’s Point Horror blog https://cornsyrup.co.uk

We also do a podcast together called The Worst Movies We Own. It is available on Spotify or here https://letterboxd.com/bobbycarroll/list/the-worst-movies-we-own-podcast-ranking-and/

Passing (2021)

Rebecca Hall directs Tessa Thompson, Ruth Negga and André Holland in this period drama set during the Harlem Renaissance following the reunion of two light skinned African American women who can “pass” for white.

Anyone who watched the TV adaptation of Preacher will know Ruth Negga has a charm and an intensity that lights up the screen. This is the best showcase for her yet as a devil may care agent of chaos on Tessa Thompson’s more formal, staid, “worthy” lifestyle. The movie can be a little Brechtian at times, feeling like a series of short plays, very fixed and almost deadpan. But the emotions hidden behind that enforced flatness bubble away alluringly. Eduard Grau’s cinematography is sumptuous and painterly, like a photo being developed but not yet fully fixed.

7

Perfect Double Bill: Shadows (1959)

Check out my wife Natalie’s Point Horror blog https://cornsyrup.co.uk

We also do a podcast together called The Worst Movies We Own. It is available on Spotify or here https://letterboxd.com/bobbycarroll/list/the-worst-movies-we-own-podcast-ranking-and/

Star Trek II: The Wrath of Kahn (1982)

Nicholas Meyer directs William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy and Ricardo Montalbán in this space adventure where a villain from the Enterprise’s past declares a vendetta on Kirk and Star Fleet.

An iconic antagonist, a thrilling game of cat and mouse in a nebula, the shock ending and those nightmare inducing, mind bending ear worms mean this often is many people’s favourite entry of the franchise. The lowered budget sometimes shows things up though. Shatner smugly telling us “I don’t believe in the no-win scenario.” is one of my favourite Trek moments. James Tiberius is fucking awesome – middle aged Kirk is second only to Chris Pine Kirk.

7

Perfect Double Bill: Star Trek III: The Search For Spock (1984)

Check out my wife Natalie’s Point Horror blog https://cornsyrup.co.uk

We also do a podcast together called The Worst Movies We Own. It is available on Spotify or here https://letterboxd.com/bobbycarroll/list/the-worst-movies-we-own-podcast-ranking-and/

Top Gun (1986)

Tony Scott directs Tom Cruise, Kelly McGillis and Anthony Edwards in this war movie where the best jet fighter pilots in America train for high speed combat.

That epic synth soundtrack (Faltermeyer / Berlin / Loggins) . The Cruiser becoming an A-Lister right in front of our very eyes. The golden shimmering sheen Scott sells every image with. Flippin’ the bird. Sweaty topless beach volleyball. Goose’s death. That Lovin’ Feelin’. Every winning, glorious chunk chimes still as shameless image entertainment. Only the dogfights feel a bit underwhelming on the small screen. The romance has a jerky, undercooked nature that actually gives Cruise and McGillis space to breathe. Every thread of this feels hashed out and cobbled together, like they made the story up as they went along. The only overriding factors that unify it all are the constant homoeroticism (a man could drive himself crazy figuring out just how intentional that is) and Cruise’s coming of age as an eternal shining movie star he is and always will be. Turn your brain off and just enjoy.

7

Perfect Double Bill: Top Gun: Maverick (2022)

Check out my wife Natalie’s Point Horror blog https://cornsyrup.co.uk

We also do a podcast together called The Worst Movies We Own. It is available on Spotify or here https://letterboxd.com/bobbycarroll/list/the-worst-movies-we-own-podcast-ranking-and/

Unfaithful (2002)

Adrian Lyne directs Diane Lane, Olivier Martinez and Richard Gere in this erotic thriller where a happy housewife starts an affair with a mysterious French book dealer.

In the opening sequence, Lane is buffeted by a gale on a New York back street. The wind exposes her legs, tightens her immaculate clothing to her body. It is like Lyne is a naughty giant blowing her garments astray to give us a teasing show. The star looks classy and resplendent throughout, constantly generating heat. Lyne doesn’t even bother to gift us any notable nudity until at least an hour in, long past the first few trysts. Then the movie goes off the rails with a murder. Neither male lead matches Lane’s appeal, Martinez especially is just a pretty face. The dour final act has minimal grip and little opportunity for Lane to wear and then not wear a stunning outfit. Lacklustre after a promising start.

4

Perfect Double Bill: Fatal Attraction (1987)

Check out my wife Natalie’s Point Horror blog https://cornsyrup.co.uk

We also do a podcast together called The Worst Movies We Own. It is available on Spotify or here https://letterboxd.com/bobbycarroll/list/the-worst-movies-we-own-podcast-ranking-and/

Love Meetings (1964)

Pier Paolo Pasolini directs Lello Bersani, Alberto Moravia and Cesare Musatti in this documentary collating the vox pop interviews of the people of Italy on the subject of sex.

Not particularly mind blowing stuff but some of the members of the public have a nice energy about them. It does feel that Pasolini is often trying to categorise certain attitudes that don’t always come across in the actual opinions expressed. He makes a point of interviewing big groups in public, meaning a certain herd-like mentality dominates the interviews. But he is making another valid point by doing exactly that. Becomes overly repetitive.

5

Perfect Double Bill: This Film Is Not Yet Rated (2006)

Check out my wife Natalie’s Point Horror blog https://cornsyrup.co.uk

We also do a podcast together called The Worst Movies We Own. It is available on Spotify or here https://letterboxd.com/bobbycarroll/list/the-worst-movies-we-own-podcast-ranking-and/

Wild Child (2008)

Nick Moore directs Emma Roberts, Alex Pettyfer and Juno Temple in this fish-out-of-water kids comedy where a spoilt American rich girl is shipped off to an English boarding school.

Very scrappy, and I’m aware I’m not the target demographic. This will keep a 10 year old girl entertained but even they will want even more scenes where Emma Roberts calls someone a “Bi-Atch!” Thus completely owning them. I know I did. Fuck the true meaning of friendship!

5

Perfect Double Bill: What A Girl Wants (2003)

Check out my wife Natalie’s Point Horror blog https://cornsyrup.co.uk

We also do a podcast together called The Worst Movies We Own. It is available on Spotify or here https://letterboxd.com/bobbycarroll/list/the-worst-movies-we-own-podcast-ranking-and/

Minari (2020)

Lee Isaac Chung directs Steven Yeun, Han Ye-ri and Alan Kim in this drama where a Korean family settles in 1980s Arkansas and struggle to start a farm.

Sweet, well acted, manages to represent the differing perspectives of nearly all the family members. Not entirely sure what all the Oscar adulation was about but Minari is a neat enough one-watcher.

6

Perfect Double Bill: Field Of Dreams (1989)

Check out my wife Natalie’s Point Horror blog https://cornsyrup.co.uk

We also do a podcast together called The Worst Movies We Own. It is available on Spotify or here https://letterboxd.com/bobbycarroll/list/the-worst-movies-we-own-podcast-ranking-and/

Summerland (2020)

Jessica Swale directs Gemma Arterton, Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Lucas Bond in this British wartime drama where a female writer, living a secluded life, finds herself looking after an evacuated boy.

Perfectly watchable. No great shakes in any technical category but a good showcase for Arterton. Some of the final act revelations are well handled.

6

Perfect Double Bill: Tell It To The Bees (2019)

Check out my wife Natalie’s Point Horror blog https://cornsyrup.co.uk

We also do a podcast together called The Worst Movies We Own. It is available on Spotify or here https://letterboxd.com/bobbycarroll/list/the-worst-movies-we-own-podcast-ranking-and/