Films I Watched In: May


It’s pretty amazing how after multiple re-watches over a twenty year period that this scene (and specifically this ‘speech’) can still have me crying with laughter:

I’m Buck Melanoma! Moley Russell’s wart. Not her wart. Not her wart! I’m… I’m the wart. She’s my tumor. My… my growth. My… uh, my pimple. I’m Uncle Wart. Just old Buck “Wart” Russell. That’s what they call me, or Melanoma Head. They’ll call me that. “Melanoma Head’s coming.” I’m ….. uncle! Maisy Russell’s uncle!”

Even reading it now brings a dumb grin to my face.

John Candy was seriously funny and had a kind face. I like people who are kind and cheerful and don’t take life too seriously. They make me feel happy and remind me to relax and not worry so much. It’s like when I watch Planes, Trains & Automobiles and there’s that scene where they’re driving the burnt out car down the freeway and get stopped by the cops:

“Sir, do you believe this vehicle is safe for highway travel?”

The way Griffith replies “yes I do” can make me laugh for an HOUR I kid you not. What a guy he was – and still sorely missed.

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So yeah, I watched Uncle Buck (1989) this month, but what else did I see? Well seven films in total, all but two being re-watches so not the best but not the worst either. Pretty good selection (for a philistine like me…)

St. Trinians (2007) was on TV so me and my reluctant boyf6a00d83451f25369e20153918552d0970briend (until he saw the array of saucy school uniforms) ended up watching it during a lazy weekend. I’ve seen it before anyway and always enjoy it. I never watched the original St. Trinian series but it’s such a likable film. It’s very British and the jokes are too. There’s a cool cast, almost infinite drug references (wahey!) and possibly the best Rupert Everett performance of all time. And I’m being totally serious. Especially his scenes with Colin Firth.

Oh and I loved Stephen Fry hosting the University-Challenge-style-quiz-show whilst on pills. And I don’t mean paracetamol. Or aspirin. Or anything legal. Legend!

Face Off (1997) I’ve seen a million times and unashamedly love. I don’t call it a ‘guilty pleasure’ or any of that shit, I say it how I see it – it’s a GREAT film. But anyway, I reviewed it here ages ago, so no point droning on and who hasn’t seen it anyway? If you’ve never seen Face Off you need to now – educate yourself you fool.

The Business (2005) is next on my list, a film made by cockney geezer Nick Love, who I find fairly hit and miss. Some of his movies are great (The Football Factory) and some of them are just awful (The Sweeney). The Business is probably his most accessible film and I imagine it appeals to a wider audience than some of his ‘punch first, ask questions later’ offerings.

It’s a rags to riches gangster story set during the 1980s, in the Costa Del Crime (Spain basically, where loads of English criminals would flee for salvation). The lead character Frankie (Danny Dyer) is a likable young man who finds himself climbing the exciting ladder of crime, sex, women and drugs.

The first half of the film is absolutely fantastic. It’s fun and energetic with great characters, quotes, scenes and a banging soundtrack (that I reviewed here), but it does start to lose its thread a little towards the end. However it’s still worthy of your time and there’s always the lovely Danny to admire. I won’t hear a word against Danny Dyer – he’s a lovely bloke and a good actor and that’s a fact. End of.

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Minions (2015) I had mixed feelings for before watching. I mean I loved Despicable Me but how long can they drag it out for? The sequel was pretty good and the minions are amazing but…. you know.

I’m also not generally the biggest fan of kids movies – who the fuck wants to sit around watching kids movies? Apart from kids? I’d rather watch someone being cut up with a chainsaw or having a giant worm explode out their eye or…..something like that.

Anyway, Despicable Me was so good and a breath of fresh air in the sea of talking animals that most kids films seem to be. Happily, Minions was actually a really decent prequel. It wasn’t too long, the situations were funny and as Jordan correctly summarised in his excellent review, the jokes were smart and funny. And I know when ITV start playing it every weekend (as they do) I’ll be watching it!

Attack the Block (2011) is a typical “film that Emma loves”. It’s British, it’s low budget, it has a GREAT soundtrack (which I reviewed here), hardly any CGI – for instance the aliens are literally actors in suits like some old episode of Doctor Who. Oh and it has a spiffing script which keeps me laughing from beginning to end.

The story is simple – a gang of chavvy teenagers have to defend their housing estate ‘block’ against the arrival of some nasty aliens. It’s a fantastic blend of sci-fi and comedy, told in a unique way. To be honest I’m not sure how it translates in other countries, it helps to know what places like this are actually like and understand the slang the kids use, but for me – this is as perfect as a film can get – genuinely.

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So, that makes The Facility (2012) my last movie of May. I caught this by chance on the Horror Channel and it was late, I was super tired and had to be up early the next day so I certainly wasn’t planning on watching a film – even one with an 80 minute duration (well, 95 with adverts).

But it’s a mark of how much I enjoyed it that I did actually stay up and see it through to the end. Within ten minutes I was at that ‘hooked and have to know what’s going to happen’ stage – despite the budget being lower than Noel’s House Party. But it’s a premise that always appeals – strangers in a room. You know, like Cube or Circle or Exam. A film where people are brought together and have to solve something or fight against someone and suss each other out and so on. I like films like that, always have.

The strangers in this particular story are in an isolated (ISOLATED!!!) hospital to complete one of those paid medical trials. There’s the usual characters that we know so well by now – the rebellious loner, the fast talking flirty guy, the woman who knows right from the start it’s all probably a bad idea, the ‘trustworthy modest one’, the Grumpy Old Git etc. etc. etc.

Well OBVIOUSLY the trial goes wrong, has weird effects and the Usual Characters start getting angry and coughing and there’s blood over the walls and people being chased down corridors – it’s pretty fun to be fair.

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Like I said, it is low budge – but still, the acting was pretty good and I enjoyed the dialogue which felt natural and real. It was probably the conversation between characters that sucked me in in the first place. I couldn’t quite follow it all, mainly because in parts I just didn’t know what the fucking hell was happening – but I still enjoyed the overall ride.

And that’s it for May. Stay tuned for more next month folks – though don’t expect too much because Love Island’s on and I’m hooked….

About emmakwall

Films, books, soundtracks, good humour
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95 Responses to Films I Watched In: May

  1. I loved Face Off! I need to watch it again. I saw it in the theater when it first came out, and I watched it a few times when it came out on video. But, I haven’t seen it in years. Such a fun movie!

  2. LOVE this list. I remember watching Attack the Block back in the day, instant classic haha. Very decent for a low budget. Great blog btw, are you currently sharing your work on any other movie/tv platforms?

    • emmakwall says:

      Thank you so much! Love to meet a fellow Attack the Block / low budge fan!

      Thanks for the kind words about my blog too, it always means an awful lot to get a compliment like that 🙂 so thank you very, very much! I am not sharing my work anywhere else at the moment, just here on my blog. Any tips?! 🙂

      • Hi Emma, no problem at all, it was my pleasure. Thank YOU for your kind comment on my article, glad you enjoyed it. Like you said, it’s always nice to see that people read what you write.

        Well, I’d love to introduce you to Moviepilot and Creators if that’s something you’d be interested in. Feel free to shoot me an e-mail (you can find my contact details on my blog) if you’d like some more information. We’re a great community! 🙂

        • emmakwall says:

          Thanks so much! I will send you an email soon, that sounds wonderful! 🙂

          It really really does mean so much 🙂 just one comment like yours truly makes my day! And you’re very, very welcome too! I love what I’ve seen of your blog so far and you write so well 🙂 🙂

  3. I LOVED Uncle Buck and pretty much everything else that John Candy has ever done. And that scene about the car being roadworthy cracks me up too! I think it has to be the funniest scene in all of P, T & A. Very understated, yet completely hilarious. Some great choices on the list there Ems!

    • emmakwall says:

      YAY! Thanks so much Geoff 🙂

      Don’t you think it’s always so nice when someone shares the same opinion as you, even with something as trivial as the car being roadworthy in P, T & A! You know exactly where I’m coming from and I just LOVE that!

      It’s so hilarious isn’t it 🙂 John Candy was sooooooo funny!

  4. Kevin says:

    Ahhh, the great John Candy. One of my favourite films with him is still Cool Runnings. It is funny as hell!

    But Uncle Buck rocks!

  5. Pingback: A Post for Emma – vinnieh

  6. movierob says:

    i loved John Candy . he is soo missed :((((

    Ive seen 4 of these 7.

    keep up the great work Ems!

  7. alexraphael says:

    Yeah John Candy rocks. Love his cameo in Home Alone. The one that got
    Me was his speech when he says you wanna hurt me. They actually spoofed it in Family Guy by not changing anything. Just had Lois crying at the end.

    • emmakwall says:

      I remember!!! Both from Planes, Trains and Family Guy lol.
      “you wanna hurt me? Go ahead, hurt me…” and Lois does the Steve Martin speech where he has a go at Candy doesn’t she lol. “it’s probably the right thing to do!” that one ha ha.

      I love his cameo in Home Alone too! He just seemed so full of fun and kindness didn’t he 🙂

  8. Face Off is so bad in the best way possible. My partner and I always imitate the face gesturing thing that John Travolta does from that film!

    • emmakwall says:

      Haha, love it!!! You and your (dishy) partner are always having so much fun!!

      I sometimes mimic Brad Pitt at the end of Seven when he finds the unpleasant surprise in the box and is ‘battling with himself’ whether to kill Spacey or not, he keeps putting the gun in the air, then putting it down, putting in the air, putting it down, all with his face screwed up. I like imitating that! Ha ha ha 🙂

  9. Tom Schultz says:

    So, I was at a book club last weekend and the book was kinda humdrum and the discussion kinda dragging but my ears pricked up when over the elevator music in the bookstore came….could it be?…yes it was….Ecstasy of Gold. So, my thoughts immediately went to my favorite Brit movie maven. Ennio Morricone is The Man!

    • emmakwall says:

      OH MY GOSH REALLY?!!! That is incredible and really made me smile! Who would imagine a lift playing Ecstasy of Gold as it’s music! That is so, so cool 🙂 beats the muzak we get round here ha ha 🙂

      What’s next at the book club?

      • Tom Schultz says:

        Invisible Man. Not H.G. Wells, but the 20th century American novel by Ralph Ellison. About the experience of a black man (hence “invisible” to white Americans) in the 1940s. Beautiful writing and insightful.

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