Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Battle of the Sex Scenes

This blog is rated 12A for moderate sex references.

Despite the BBFC constantly palming me off with less-than-satisfactory templated e-mails of little substance whenever I pose them a query, I always seem to come back for more.

Perhaps this is because my brain is so film classification-geared, that I’m hungry to have movie discourse of any kind, and the BBFC did act on my Call Me by Your Name e-mail earlier this year, showing that they are receptive to suggestions, once in a blue moon.

My most recent e-mail to them was about Battle of the Sexes, rated 12A for infrequent moderate sex. The oh-so-informative extended insight read:

In one scene, two women have sex; however, there is no strong detail.

Friday, June 15, 2018

My attempt at writing a BBFC report for BEAST (2018)

It was William Shakespeare who remarked ‘brevity is the soul of wit’, and with regards to that quote in many walks of life (for example, intolerable guys who’s arrogance would make Gaston from Beauty and the Beast appear modest droning on about how oh-so-clever they are for having passed their CFA exams), The Bard was not wrong.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

This is not just a photoshoot. This is an M&S photoshoot.

Happy Hump Day, readers! The World Cup starts tomorrow, and I am officially pumped.

Despite me supporting France in the 2018 World Cup as I did in the 2016 Euros (with my second teams being South Korea, Japan and Croatia), and me following the England national team with the same emotional whiplashing (not-so-subtle plug of a sick Miles Teller film, there) of love and hate that I had for them in the 2016 Euros (because of that racist Vardy), I will of course be keeping a beady eye on the exploits of my national team. How can I not, when Gary Baehill is in the squad?

The team had their official photoshoot yesterday, kitted out in a rather dapper, and more than a little tight Marks and Spencer three-piece-suits:

Couple thoughts on this photo:

Monday, June 11, 2018

13 Lookalikes Why

Season 2 of 13 Reasons Why was so dreadful that I lost interest in the contrived plot at several points, and instead focused on how some of the cast members looked like footballers. In the spirit of the 2018 World Cup, which begins this Thursday, here are thirteen dubious actor/footballer lookalikes!

Wednesday, June 06, 2018

A million dreams for the world we're gonna make.

On Sunday, me and my friend went on a bus tour around London’s film locations, courtesy of Cineworld. It was super-fun! Despite having grown up in London, up until Saturday, I hadn’t actually been on a tour bus around the city, so it allowed me to indulge the inner tourist in me for a few hours, as well as top up my film knowledge. Win-win!

The bus we rode in on. Ohai, Taron Egerton and Gal Gadot films!

Friday, May 25, 2018

Restaurant review: LAHORE KARAHI (Tooting)

A friend recommended Lahore Karahi to me as a tasty, cheap curryhouse, and being an ardent fan of both Pakistani food and bargains, I ventured to South-West London to investigate. I have now been to Lahore Karahi twice, and here are my impressions of the dishes there!

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

TV review: 13 REASONS WHY season 2 (Netflix)

This blog contains spoilers for season 2 of 13 Reasons Why.

Since its release last March, 13 Reasons Why, the Netflix adaptation of Jay Asher’s novel, chronicling why High School student Hannah Baker took her own life, was met with controversy. Many people felt the show glamorised suicide, not least in the way Hannah made 13 cassette recordings with a reason and person named on each tape, to be listened to by the people who contributed to her decision to commit suicide. In season 1, the characters named on the tape, unsurprisingly, were wracked with guilt and recriminations over who was ‘most’ culpable, flew between the accused.

Friday, May 18, 2018

Film review: A OR B [幕后玩家] (Pengyuan Ren, 2018)

A shady investment manager Zhong Xiaonian (Xu Zheng) wakes up one day to find that the safe where he kept records of his dodgy dealings, and a vital USB stick containing access to all his funds, has been ransacked. Even worse, there’s no way for him to exit his bedroom. He’s locked in, and every day at 9am, he must choose one undesired consequence (A), or another (B), or else both will happen.

This plot conceit, which has more than a passing resemblance to the Saw movies, is executed, for the most part, in a suitably compelling manner. In order to rise to his position at the top of the company, Zhong has screwed over many people and made some powerful enemies, and as he tries to plot his escape from the locked room, he’s also trying to ascertain the identity of the person who’s doing this to him.

Wednesday, May 09, 2018

Second-guessing the films that the BBFC got the most complaints in 2017

This blog is rated 15 for references to child abuse and strong sex references.

The BBFC drop their Annual Reports around July every year, where they discuss all facets of their guidelines and the film classification process in the UK. I await these reports with the same eagerness I await the Oscars with, and I think it's fun to try and predict which titles cause the BBFC the most complaints every year!

Sunday, May 06, 2018

10 Prettiest Ladies in a 2009 Film

My archives of eye candy lists by year are here, if you want to inspect my taste in guys and gals holistically!

10. Léa Seydoux, Inglourious Basterds 

09. Anna Kendrick, Up in the Air

Thursday, May 03, 2018

15 rated films with male-to-female usages of the c-word

This blog is rated 15 for implied very strong language and descriptions of domestic violence and brutality.

About twice a year, I’ll curiosity-watch a film purely because Mark Kermode has gone in on it in his reviews. Last year, I watched Ron Howard’s The Dilemma for this precise reason, and Kermode was right; it was a tonal mess with jokes that went down like a lead balloon.

Monday, April 30, 2018

Film review: FALLEN ANGEL (Otto Preminger, 1945)

Eric Stanton, a penniless, down on his luck conman arrives in a Californian coastal town and instantly falls for Stella, the resident siren. Unfortunately for him, he’s not the only one to have fallen under her spell, as all the men in the town are equally smitten with her.

Sunday, April 29, 2018

A rude gesture at the MCU

This blog is rated 12A for implied strong language and references to violence and torture.

Those with a passing interest in British film certification will have noticed that they’ve recently adopted a new turn of phrase as part of their catalogue of film ratings reasons: ‘rude gesture’.

It’s been flagged for several films, including Pacific Rim Uprising, Rampage and Walk with Me. The former two are 12A and the latter is a PG, which suggests to me the BBFC can’t quite decide if using the middle finger is a 12A or PG-rated offence.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Restaurant review: PREZZO (New Oxford Street)

Now that there’s a post-Oscar lull, my blog feels weirdly directionless. I’m currently consuming any black and white films I can get my hands on, so expect random review of classic movies! I shall also attempt to make my way through the huge backlog of restaurants and bars I’ve frequented (although the rate I dine out far outstrips the rate at which I review places!).

I attended Prezzo with a BuyAGift voucher, where the deal on the website was £30 for a three-course-meal with a glass of wine.

Monday, April 23, 2018

OOTD: I knew you were trouble when you walked in

What I wore to dine at one of my favourite Japanese restaurants for the umpteenth time!

Angelica T-shirt: New Look (a store I'm clearly a fan of!)
Earrings: Won in a competition

Sunday, April 22, 2018

OOTD: And there's a million things I haven't done

Outfit of the Day featuring me looking extremely pleased with my Hamilton guitar book!

 A picture without the book covering my dress:

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Restaurant review: GALVIN AT WINDOWS (Mayfair)

Back in February, I had the pleasure of being able to try the five-course tasting menu at Galvin at Windows, at the Park Lane Hilton. With the exception of Yuauatcha and Sticks’n’Sushi, I rarely dine at expensive places, so when I got the opportunity to, it always feels like a special occasion!

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Film review: REPEAT PERFORMANCE (Alfred L. Werker, 1947)

Just before the turn of the New Year of 1947, renowned stage actress Sheila Page (Joan Leslie) shoots her emotionally abusive husband Barney, having reached her limit regarding his philandering and alcoholism. She regrets it immediately, wishing for the opportunity to go back in time to avoid making this mistake. Miraculously, as the clock chimes midnight, her wish is granted, and she finds she has been transported back to the beginning of 1946.

Alfred L. Werker’s drama plays like a blend of It’s a Wonderful Life with Groundhog Day, via the well-known trope of errant husbands. There is no doubt of the protagonist’s devotion to her cheating husband, even if, like Bette Davis’ character in Of Human Bondage, he doesn’t display any qualities that merit such love.

Despite Barney being a total cad, it is revealed that he, a playwright, gave Sheila her first big break as an actress, and thus, her patience towards him is heavily inflected with gratitude. But as her close friend William notes, ‘You can’t feel grateful to him forever. That’s going to wear thin at some point’.

Whilst Sheila’s success as an actress is part of the reason why she loves him so much, it’s precisely this why Barney’s so embittered towards her. Just as his play was the springboard for Sheila’s career, it was also the last good thing he produced, and watching his wife thrive whilst his own career stagnates fomented increasing feelings of bitterness towards her.

Friday, April 13, 2018

Love, Emma

This is a BBFC-ccentric blog. In the great tradition of the BBFC, I will now preface articles on film ratings with a film rating (how meta, eh?).

This entry would be rated 12A for references to murder, sexual threat, racist behaviour and snide digs at certain druggie actresses.


Midnight Sun, a film which I have no interest in seeing (it stars that meth-head Bella Thorne (for future reference, just so you know, whenever I refer to ‘Meth-head’, I’m talking about Bella Thorne, and ‘Cokehead’ is Cara Delevingne), recently got handed a rather interesting BBFC insight.

It is rated 12A purely for ‘underage drinking’.

The extended insight reads:
There are scenes glamorising alcohol use in which teenagers, including some who are underage, attend a party where they play drinking games and do shots.

Seems a pretty draconic reason to hand out a 12A certificate, no? The actual 12A rating itself I’m not going to quibble with too much, as it got PG-13 in the States and 12A in Ireland, so it’s probable that the BBFC just didn’t want to stick out like a sore thumb by giving it a PG rating.

But at least Ireland came up with a semi-plausible reason for their 12A, citing ‘moderate sex references’. By giving a film a 12A purely for underage drinking, the BBFC have opened up an unwelcome can of worms, a can of worms which BBFC pedants like me are quick to catch on to.

See, Love, Simon, another 12A-rated film, also contains a party scene where the characters (who are in High School, and thus underage), drank alcohol. Yet Love, Simon is rated 12A for ‘infrequent strong language, moderate sex references’, with no mention of the underage drinking in the extended insight or short insight.

Thursday, April 12, 2018

My 25 Favourite Performances of 2017

My final post commemorating the cinematic year that was 2017 is my favourite: the acting!

This list is judged from two factors: acting quality, and my heavy, unrepentant sense of favouritism. I like to think that I wouldn’t put a bad performance on the list, but it would also be inaccurate to claim every performance listed was one of the 25 best acting performances of 2017 (for example, I’d have a hard time arguing that Gal Gadot was better in Wonder Woman than Emma Stone in Battle of the Sexes, say).

Warning: the following blog under the cut is gif heavy! (To paraphrase Hamilton, ‘We rendezvous with Rochambeau, consolidate their GIFS!’)

25. Will Poulter as ‘Krauss’ in Detroit

Fun fact: one of my friends works in the same building as Poulter's father (who's a very big dog in his field of science). Thus, whenever I see the BAFTA Rising Star winner in a film, I feel like we're mates (by three degrees of separation, but still. 😂)

Monday, April 09, 2018

Film review: DUNKIRK (Christopher Nolan, 2017)

I tried to write a review of Dunkirk without using the vernacular 'twink', or slagging off Cokehead Delevingne. Did I succeed? Read on to find out...


The evacuation of 400,000 British men from Northern France during World War II is depicted from three viewpoints: that of the Allied soldiers on the beach, the civilians who bought them back to Britain in their personal boats, and the pilots caught trying to protect the soldiers from German attack overhead. Three time scales are employed in the film; we follow the soldiers for a week, the civilians for one day and the pilots for an hour, as their arcs converge to one pivotal moment.

Friday, April 06, 2018

My Favourite Films of 2017 [5 to 1]

Part one here!

05. The Florida Project

The less affluent underbelly of Disneyland Florida’s sunny surroundings is depicted with affection and humanity by Sean Baker, who follows 6-year-old Moonee through her adventures at the bright lilac motel where she lives with her mother.

Wednesday, April 04, 2018

No Country for Young Men

Dunkirk 2: The Frenchman Rises - where Tommy goes back for Gibson, rescues him, and the two celebrate being evacuated by going to a LA Dodgers game. Absolutely love that Barnard is wearing Ray-bans in this photo!

Over the Easter weekend, when I wasn't watching my club lose miserably to Spurs, I was making the most of the poll function on Instagram, to investigate one of life's most important, unanswered questions:
Just who is the hottest actor in Dunkirk?

Monday, April 02, 2018

Two film rating observations regarding Wes Anderson films

Being as big a BBFC nerd as I am can be an affliction sometimes. It means that, for purposes of BBFC research, I end up watching titles that I would not watch otherwise (Fairy Tale – Dragon Cry, Red Sparrow, etc), and not particularly enjoying the experience.

Isle of Dogs was another example of such film. It wasn’t a bad film at all, but Wes Anderson is just not to my taste, and I didn’t feel like the film had enough of a sense of jeopardy regarding the dogs' mission, to keep me gripped.

Friday, March 30, 2018

My Favourite Films of 2017 [10 – 6]

Now that I’ve got the substantial snark out of the way, it’s time to honour the good stuff! Part 1 and part 2 of my favourite films of 2016, if you were wondering what my taste in films is like!

These following five movies constitute the bright sparks of 2017: the movies that bought a smile to my face, made me feel passionately, or triggered deep philosophical thoughts in my otherwise pretty one-track mind (nah, let’s be fair to myself, two-track. In that I think about Fionn Whitehead and Aneurin Barnard).

10. Wonder Woman

After the dross that was Batman vs Superman and Suicide Squad (which, despite me giving 7.5/10 initially after watching it, I’ve realised after reflection that the jukebox-style soundtrack and Viola Davis playing a red wine-drinking, steak-eating HBIC papered over a whole litany of flaws), the DCEU finally get it right.

Saturday, March 24, 2018

Fun with chalk and blackboards at the Odeon Covent Garden.

The Odeon Covent Garden has always had terrific film introduction game. Usually, a screen is devoted to one film only, but I've noticed they've recently mixed it up a bit more, so there's more variety in the films they show.

Here are two introductions that tickled me, whether it be for the font, wording used, or in the latter case, the creative way they squeezed five film titles onto one board!

Of course, this BBFC nerd's eye was drawn to how, coincidentally, all five of these films were 15-rated! Although one of them really ought not to be.

Thursday, March 22, 2018

The Worst Acting Performances of 2017 [5 to 1]

Emma’s shade-throwing at bad acting continues! Read 10 to 6 here. I like to think I was relatively measured in my snark before. As we’re now onto the bottom five, I can’t promise to be so kind! Ehehe.

05. Johnny Depp, Murder on the Orient Express

As the sketchy art dealer Ratchett, Depp’s character is killed off early on, leaving Kenneth Branagh’s sleuth the rest of the film to piece together whodunit. The Johnny Depp of old, the Depp we saw in Pirates of the Caribbean (the first one, not the 34897 laboured sequels after), Ed Wood and Edward Scissorhands would have seized this role with aplomb and made an indelible impression in his limited screen time.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Very helpful (not)

This blog post is rated 15 for references to sexual violence and torture.

The BBFC replied to my e-mail on Red Sparrow, and in doing so, reminded me why it is I don’t usually bother e-mailing them. The Call Me By Your Name thing was a fluke; I forgot how obstinate and obtuse these people are when they want to be or have accepted a bung from 20th Century Fox.

Don’t be fooled by the length; like Jamie Redknapp’s punditry, they have used a lot of words which ultimately say very little.

1) The BBFC are in the business of re-writing film history to suit their agendas.

Saturday, March 17, 2018

10 Most Attractive Ladies in a 2010 Film

The prettiest ladies in a 2011 film list, here. As ever, the list is constrained to only movies I've watched.

10. Ellen Page, Inception
I think Christopher Nolan is partial to actors and actresses with brown hair, but I'm not sure... Incidentally, I think 'Ariadne', Page's character, is the only well-written female in a Chris Nolan film. (This is partly why Dunkirk was so good; there were no women in it for him to invent just to kill off).

Friday, March 16, 2018

The Worst Acting Performances of 2017 [10 - 6]

Now that awards season is all wrapped up, it’s time for this blog to slowly wave goodbye to 2017 and start looking ahead to the 2018 cinematic year! As part of that slow wave goodbye, I will celebrate the best and worst of 2017 according to me! 

We shall start with the worst acting performances. Here was 2016’s worst performances list for reference. I unfortunately had to throw shade at Jesse Eisenberg, one of my favourite actors, in last year's Hall of Shame. I'm glad to report he reined his Lux Luthor in a lot in Justice League, and thus, avoids making the list a second year running. Phew!

10. Daisy Ridley, Murder on the Orient Express

Although the Star Wars actress is very pretty, has a nice screen presence and seems like a lovely person, she was far too lightweight in the role of Mary Debenham. The film is set in the 30s, and Ridley’s character is secretly having a relationship with Dr. Arbuthnot (Hamilton’s Leslie Odom, Jr). Such are the outdated attitudes of the time towards inter-racial dating, that Debenham and Arbuthnot have to keep this, as well as their involvement with the murder of Johnny Depp’s character on the train, under wraps.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

10 Fittest Chaps in a 2011 Film.

Happy Hump Day! The gal's list here (where I had to include Emma Stone because it was her or Kaya Scodelario, and Arsenal fan Kaya chatted smack about my football team, so... #foreverpettylikeMilesTeller).

10. Jude Law, Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Red Sparrow's 15 Rating Should Never Really Have Been Here

The only positive thing I can say about Red Sparrow is that Charlotte Rampling and Jeremy Irons were in. Although, after this, Batman v Superman and High-Rise, Jezza might want to find himself a new agent...

I watched Red Sparrow on Thursday (don't worry, I used my Limitless card to book a ticket to Kenneth Branagh's vanity project so I didn't contribute to JLaw's Box Office, then sneaked in). It was, as I expected, dreadful. After Passengers and mother!, I daresay a film this bad is the last thing Jennifer Lawrence needs, but there you go.

Thursday, March 08, 2018

Best and Worst Dressed of the Oscars, 2018.

Obviously, fashion and looks are subjective, so this is by no means the gospel. And I'm not even gonna pretend that bias and love for certain performers (and disdain for others) did not creep until my rankings. I'm prone to playing favourites and being hella petty to those I dislike a la Miles Teller when he tweeted 'congratulations to Moonlight!'

The Dunkirk twinks Harry Styles and Fionn Whitehead weren't invited to the Oscars, but had they been, I'm sure they would have made the Best Dressed Males List.

So, without further ado...

Best dressed women

07. Beanie Feldstein

Jonah Hill's younger sister's dress reminds me, funnily enough, of Jonah's Superbad co-star Emma Stone's gorgeous City of Stars dress that she wore to the 2017 Golden Globes. Only a darker, more gothic version. Black is a slimming colour, and the winged eye make-up, wavy hair and dangly earrings complete the outfit nicely.

Monday, March 05, 2018

Oscars Not Bad

The acting class of 2018 including two sparring partners Outside Ebbing, Missouri. The most predictable batch of winners in recent years, but hey, no Casey Affleck or Emma Stone in sight, so not as objectionable as last year!

Hot dang! I should have put a bet down yesterday, because, bar the short film categories, I got every feature length film category bang on! Ohai, sick predictions! This is by far the best showing I’ve had since creating this blog at the age of 15, and, I have to say, it feels pretty satisfying!

Saturday, March 03, 2018

Oscar predictions, 2018

Sick Oscar graphic credit: Vulture. Guess the films represented!

The Times' review of RED SPARROW (Francis Lawrence, 2018)

Kevin Maher of The Times wrote a fantastically scathing review of the mess that was mother!. He's on form again, slating Jennifer Lawrence's new film, Red Sparrow. I've taken the liberty of photographing it, as The Times reviews are behind a paywall.

Click to enlarge to read all the shade!

Thursday, March 01, 2018

U-rated films with the longest (or most eye-catching) BBFC short insights

Unlike the MPAA rating ‘G’ which is almost becoming obsolete these days (even My Little Pony: The Movie got a PG in America) the BBFC does not require a film to be squeaky clean in order to get a U-rating (ditto Ireland and their equivalent to the U, G).

The guidelines at U allow for more in the way of comic violence, threat, very elementary sexual innuendo (eg flirting) and mature themes than the Americans. (Case in point: Inside Out, Finding Dory and Love and Friendship were all U/G here and in Ireland, yet received a PG in America.)

When I was wondering around WHSmith and Tesco, I noticed a few DVDs which really testify to this fact, from the sheer length of their short insights (in case you hadn’t realised, turning over DVD cases and reading the back is one of my favourite pastimes *James Franco in The Disaster Artist-style awkward laugh*).

The Angry Birds Movie, which was cut to get a U-rating (read about why here), is the longest with four issues at U:

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

10 Most Attractive Women in a 2011 Film.

Happy Hump Day, readers! Here be my choices for the ten best looking women in a 2011 film (under from the female gaze of Emma), constrained, obviously, by the 2011 releases I've happened to watch. 2012's prettiest women, for comparison.

10. Anne Hathaway, One Day

Sunday, February 25, 2018

A Look Ahead to Best Original Screenplay

I watched Lady Bird yesterday, so I can analyse another Oscar category, woohoo! Read my analysis of Best Original Score here. Due to time constraints, this is probably the final category I’m gonna analyse before the ceremony, but, at least I discussed two fields this year, an improvement from last year by one.

Saturday, February 24, 2018

I go to HMV for DVDs, I come back with intel on the BBFC

^^ Title a very tenuous reference to ‘Guns and Ships’ from the Hamilton soundtrack, which I am absolutely obsessed with!

So, whenever I go to HMV to buy something, I spend way more time in store than necessary, due to my natural inclination for turning every DVD around so I can read the BBFC short insight on the back. Here are a few points of interest from the last time I went: