Film Reviews by TB

Welcome to TB's film reviews page. TB has written 144 reviews and rated 279 films.

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Midnight Family

Intensely intimate

(Edit) 07/02/2023

An intimate but also shocking portrait of the human cost of Mexico's healthcare crisis.

Corruption and failings make an already difficult situation, so much harder and testing for the simply incredible Ochoa family. A family who are not just fighting to survive themselves but doing their best to help others.

A very real and well shot series of nights following this family in a hard hitting documentary that really hits home.

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Capernaum

Sensational

(Edit) 01/11/2022

I completely fell in love with this movie and was sat there feeling numb and with tears in my eyes as the final credits rolled.

 Zain Al Rafeea put in a spellbinding performance that rose way above his years.

The film is beautiful, yet harrowing and the sensational acting alongside the well shot scenes really tug at your heartstrings.

The very real poverty, immigration and refugee backbone that runs through this film leaves you  really hurt inside but also so grateful that you have been fortunate enough to not be born into the hell that these poor people have been born into.

Shocking and harrowing but without doubt one of the greatest films I’ve ever seen.

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Dhogs

Dark and Atmospheric *Spoilers*

(Edit) 10/08/2022

I’m a big fan of great cinematography, and alongside the solid atmospherics this film delivered on that front.

It was dark and had a Tarentino-like feel to it with its harsh and shocking moments.

I found it a film that made you think about the message and what was happening. It ultimately made me thinking about how some men view women and in this case the woman that these interlinked stories rotated around. The first guy (business man) didn’t take advantage of the women as such but it spiralled from there with her being kidnapped and abused, then providing an opportune moment for what seemed like a person who could save her, actually using the situation to rape her. These moments are what made the film feel so cruel. You’ll get the picture when watching it but the striking thing was that it took a child’s mind and view of a women to free her in the end.

Dark, yet enjoyable and thought provoking. 

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Still Life

Marvellous Marsan

(Edit) 07/02/2022

As stated in another review, the performance of Eddie Marsan was understated but brilliant. The film certainly wouldn’t have been as strong if not for his unemotional performance, that actually provoked emotion when watching.

The sense of passion, commitment and care that his character, John May showed in his job was warming in the way that those who had seemingly died alone and were forgotten people; at least had one person who was there for them after their passing.

There was a real simplicity to some scenes but that’s what made them real and thought-provoking.

I also thought the ending was a clever piece of directing/writing that was somewhat sad, yet a beautifully touching end to the film.

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Dream Boy

Wasn’t too bad until the ridiculous ending!

(Edit) 24/01/2022

This was a rather tender and okay (without being amazing) story of young love between two lads. One of which had an abusive home life but found love and happiness in the farm boy next door.

However, with about 20 minutes of the film left it turned completely bonkers and into some sort of a horror, come thriller, come I don’t know what!!!  Did the director pop an acid tab for the final scenes. Left me baffled.

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Green Butterflies

Excellent narrative, let down by poor acting and filming

(Edit) 22/11/2021

It’s a real shame that this film tackled all of the right and most relevant topics for young people in today’s society but missed a trick by delivering it with a real lack of quality, drive and focus. This was mainly caused by weak acting and filming and was like watching an Australian soap opera; which isn’t a good thing.

To be fair to Deivi Duarte though, he did put in the best performance as Mateo but those around him fell well short of what was required and what would’ve made this a very solid and very good film.

It ticked all the boxes in tackling bullying, homophobia, human rights, oppression, rape, spiking and suicide. It also highlighted the problems caused by people taking no  responsibly for their actions and the devastating affects as seen in this films conclusion.

Apparently it’s based on a true story but I really hope to god there aren’t any head teachers out there like the one portrayed in this film!

Great plot and themes but really missed a trick.

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County Lines

Brutal and powerful

(Edit) 18/10/2021

A stunning performance by young actor, Conrad Khan and a film that depicts a situation that’s all too prevalent for some young people in seriously deprived areas of the UK.

The film is slow paced but captures the raw emotions and the explosive and tense situations around drugs and the grooming of young people. With nowhere to turn, no options and a family life that’s fragmented and hanging on a thread; this sorry and sad tale hits home.

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Hidden Kisses

Superb

(Edit) 15/05/2021

I really can’t applaud the director enough in his handling and delivery of a moment that many young gay men face in their lives. It certainly jogged more than a few memories for me as a gay man and had me nodding, crying and smiling throughout.

The director nailed every aspect perfectly and it was delivered with great beauty and belief by the two young actors. It also showed both sides of the coin in a fathers reaction, in how the process of acceptance and love for their sons can take different paths. I thought Nathan’s Dad in particular put in a great acting performance.

It showed the pain and doubt that can torture a young gay man at an already tough time in life. Along with the very real sadness, bullying and lack of education or compassion, that thankfully exists less and less in today’s society but was brought into the spotlight and showed perfectly how much it not only effects those involved but those around them.

Bravo!

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Duel

Gripping suspense

(Edit) 31/01/2021

The first proper film by Spielberg and a glimpse of what was to come from this director. This is a classic film with gripping suspense and at times an eerie feel to it as a mainly silent film submerges you in a deranged game of cat and mouse.

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The Shiny Shrimps

Pricilla meets pool

(Edit) 11/11/2020

What a great feel good film that’s full of joyous moments. It’s predictable but who cares as it leaves you with a huge smile on your face. Pricilla takes to the pool!!

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Now Is Good

Get the tissues

(Edit) 06/10/2020

As a whole it doesn’t hit the levels of ‘The Fault in Our Stars’ and some of the supporting actors performances are a little wooden at times. However, the two leads deliver powerful performances that deliver the narrative of the film with an emotional punch that will have you reaching for the tissues.

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Creed II

Ties in well again

(Edit) 01/09/2020

Not as good as the first Creed film but still a worthy watch.

The story is a rather predictable one (aren’t they all) but it ties in nicely with the others and delivers on that front yet again.

I did love his ring entrance also!! 

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Bubba Ho-Tep

Brilliantly bonkers

(Edit) 31/08/2020

A completely bonkers and bizarre storyline that is almost tarentino-esque in its style and dark comedy.

Something different and certainly worth a watch.

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Cousins

Refreshing

(Edit) 17/08/2020

This seemed as though it was going to be another coming-of-age gay love story and to a degree it was but the ending was superb. I don’t want to spoil it for anyone so I’ll just say that it could’ve been so easy to have a stereotypical ending but the unpredictable and rather moving ending left me beaming and I hope people who ‘need’ to see this film, do.

Love is the most wonderful thing in the world and is more beautiful than anything or anyone. 

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Blossoming of Maximo Oliveros

Superbly directed

(Edit) 02/08/2020

Tackling the subject of pre-teen sexuality and coming-of-age can be a minefield but the director nailed this with great sensitivity and beauty.

A lovely and innocent story of young emotions and the feeling of love and infactuation. Maxi was a great character and really well played by the young actor. The story delivered on lots of levels being filmed amongst the criminality in the slums of Manila and the struggles of families and the crimes that they turn to in order to survive. While interweaving with a story of love that culminates in a powerful scene towards the end of the film (the whistling; you’ll know when you watch it).

I really enjoyed the depths of this film and the great directing in not flinching away from showing the raw truth of the ways of life in these slums and the beauty of love.

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