Film Reviews by BF

Welcome to BF's film reviews page. BF has written 8 reviews and rated 76 films.

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Coup 53

Reaping the Whirlwind

(Edit) 18/06/2021

This is the best documentary I have watched in over 50 years. Meticulous, patient and creative in its making, it exposes the arrogance and greed of a former UK government in the overthrow of a democratically elected government and the installation of a dictator so that it could ensure access to cheap oil. The actions of the UK intelligence service then are significantly to blame for the mess we are in at the moment with the Iranians.

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Wings

Best air combat sequences

(Edit) 08/09/2020

I know how hard it is to make realistic fight sequences air-to-air and this film does it. Other, later films have thrown a lot of money at these elements with a mixture of success, but what Wings has going for it is tons of authenticity. For a start they have authentic WW1 battle planes and surviving WW1 pilots. So definitely worth watching if only for these moments in the air.

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The Souvenir

Well that's an hour and a half of my life that I can't get back

(Edit) 05/04/2020

Not good I'm afraid. With a script so poor you wonder how on earth did she get the finance?  Just shows that William Goldman is as right now about the film industry as he was when he said that "Nobody knows anything..." 

At least perhaps it's worth watching a turkey very occasionally, so you can appreciate good films all the more. 

2 out of 2 members found this review helpful.

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It Happened Here

An uncut diamond

(Edit) 03/03/2019

OK so it's quite uneven, with a thin storyline, but it is precisely because these film makers had little money that some of the scenes are so powerful, strangely. For example in one scene - that UA insisted on being cut - they brought in UK fascists to talk about their view of what they see as the 'Jewish problem', it is horrifying all the more so because it doesn't feel scripted, but real. These fascists condemn themselves simply by opening their mouths.

Particularly relevant for these current times.

The other theme is how easy it can be for good people to collaborate all in the name of keeping the peace, and before they know it becoming embroiled in crimes that sent Nazis to the gallows.

Worth watching.

4 out of 4 members found this review helpful.

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Taxi Tehran

Life as we might not know it in a taxi

(Edit) 12/02/2018

This is such an original film giving proof, if ever one was needed, to the maxim that real life is stranger than fiction. The characters that inhabit the taxi are gems in all their self-interest, altruism, courage, boorishness and intelligence. The situations at times unbelievable whilst their reactions leave you angry, laughing and finally full of admiration for those having to deal with an autocratic government with such resilience.

2 out of 2 members found this review helpful.

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Manchester by the Sea

A rare downbeat story incredibly well-told

(Edit) 20/10/2017

Thoroughly depressing and yet extraordinarily compelling. The directing is assured and beautifully nuanced. Casey Affleck and Michelle Williams as estranged husband and wife stuck in a miasma of hurt and guilt bring in mesmerising performances. Lucas Hedges floundering as the fatherless nephew is well cast - hope to see more of him in future.

3 out of 4 members found this review helpful.

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A Walk in the Woods

Does it live up to the book?

(Edit) 08/04/2016

It's different, that's for sure. OK what happens in the book gets repeated on film, but somehow the sharp observational joy is missing. I think what made the book so compelling and a best-seller was the author, Bill Bryson's funny, knowledgeable and dispassionate look at contemporary America using the Appalachian Trail as the medium.

Redford and Nolte are good, with some good supporting acting too. The views are stunning - although all the interesting crappy locations have been excised - but the script really doesn't do justice to the book. The reason is that much of the funny stuff comes from the internal commentary of Bryson's mind. It's worth a watch though - if only to persuade you to go read the book!

1 out of 1 members found this review helpful.

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Everest

Gasping for Air

(Edit) 16/03/2016

Great story, flawlessly told. Obviously they couldn't film on Everest other than around base camp, but the higher up stuff, especially in the 'death zone' is totally believable.

An excellent tribute to those that lost their lives.

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