Le Mans ’66

I took a recent trip to see a film. I decided I needed to get out and do something and I also wanted to go somewhere new-ish. So, rather than journey over the Medway to Strood I went a little further and made Bluewater my destination. Now, this could have been a terrible decision as it’s the end of November and therefore well into the Christmas shopping season, I don’t do well in crowded places full of people buying shit for a stupid human festival. I have no idea of the state of the tide for my film trip. I didn’t purposely look at the river to observe the tidal phase but I did see a boat on another boat which I will try and get a photograph of next time.

After seeing the film I rated it on IMDB and there is a guide to the rating system in this communication. Then my phone tweets the result as well, such is technology nowadays.

So, what did I think of the film? I enjoyed it. There was the right amount of humour [at least I laughed] and I liked the cars. I wasn’t aware of the life of Phil Hill although I had heard the name before. This film really highlighted his racing career and how he was as a human being. It clearly showed the idea of man and machine as one, racing as fast as possible. The relationship between Hill and Shelby was great to see, as was the battles they faced with the bureaucratic monster that is Ford. There were a few liberties taken with the real story and the film version, but I can live with that.

The race tracks looked bloody amazing. I’m really impressed how, with tons of cash, you can turn the race tracks back into their 60s counterparts. It was nice to see Willow Springs in real life having raced around it in games for many years.

This film highlights some of the main issues with filming racing cars or people driving fast. Firstly to make the scenes look as though they are happening fast the camera is placed down close to the road, this gives the impression of speed because we are accustomed to seeing the road move from a greater height. You’ll see this all the time when cars race in film and it makes me giggle a little when you know they are only doing 40mph but acting as though it’s 100mph.

The second thing is that directors would like us to believe that you can always put your foot down more and there’s always another gear to change into! This isn’t the case. Race drivers use all the gears all the time and will generally be driving as hard as possible. Now, there may be times when they “go EZ” but this still requires the use of all gears but generally they will change at lower revs and avoid full throttle but they are still driving fast. I blame it all on the Fast And The Furious.

Overall, an enjoyable film about those Yanks winning something four times but never before or since in the 87 runnings of the race.

Men In Black: International

On Thursday I went to see Men In Black: International. I wasn’t that fussed about the film, I was more concerned about getting out of the 36C heat outside. Inside my house it was hitting around 30C and that’s plainly ridiculous and fucking scary. These events are going to become more frequent due to anthropogenic global climate change and that saddens me intensely, I hope I’m dead before the water wars start.

There were zero films I was even slightly tempted with at my usual place, Cineworld Rochester, and so this time I went to the far-flung Bluewater shopping centre. The car was not happy about starting in the heat [36C] and so initially I turned it off straight away, it made sounds I have not heard before. I tried again and the thing seemed reasonably comfortable so I decided to risk driving to near Greenhithe. I managed the air conditioning in the car so it stayed at a cool 24C eventually. I don’t like being that warm in a car, it makes me sleepy, a steady 18C is more normal but it was a special day.

I’m afraid I can’t give you any news about the state of the tide as the Bluewater complex is in a quarry and nowhere near the sea. I mean, the river is a couple of miles away but I wasn’t going to make that detour just to keep some strangely traditional part of these reviews going. The tide report will return.

It’s about 1km to the river.

More tradition: the IMDB rating and tweet. As is custom I rated the film on the IMDB website and there’s a guide to those ratings in this communication. You can see all my tweets and things by looking at the menu at the top of this page.

So, I rated this film as an 8. That’s quite high really but the film gets two extra points just for the air conditioning available in Bluewater and the theatre. It was glorious to enter the building from the car park and feel the cool air and to feel more human again. I don’t think we were made to sweat constantly. I used the Showcase cinema app on my phone for the electronic ticket on there and it worked well.

The seats in the cinema are lovely and comfortable and I was happy with that but my seat happened to have an EXIT sign nearby and it was too bright. It took my attention too much. So, I snuck into the seat next to mine and was in the shadow of the part-wall and felt much happier. I would not have liked to sit in my original seat for the whole film.

I really enjoyed the film. It looked good and I even chuckled out loud in certain places. The plot was pretty thin, essentially the same as the previous films. But, it was cool in the cinema and the film was fun.

Just one thing though. All the London street scenes seemed to have an EAT restaurant in them. Like there was product placement. The Lexus was obvious but I’m not sure EVERY street in London has an EAT. It might do, I’ve not been that observant every time I go there. Wikipedia says there are 75 EAT locations in London.

God’s Not Dead 2

This is Part Two of Bullshit Saturday. Part one is here.

While looking through the cinema listings in the afternoon of Saturday 30 April I booked a ticket to see Bastille Day and then looked what, if anything, to see in the evening. If I didn’t find a film my plan was to listen to some live music in Maidstone. I had decided to leave Captain America for a few days and had a look at the Bluewater listings.

Oh goodness, they were showing God’s Not Dead 2. I got very excited. I had heard a lot about this film and thought it would be brilliant to actually see it. So, I booked a ticket.

As you can see I was excited. Now, there needs to be some explanation.

I listen to a number of podcasts, mainly while running or driving. My favourites are:

  • Scathing Atheist
  • Skepticrat
  • GAM Cast
  • Skeptics Guide To The Universe
  • Skeptics With A K

I have listen to these for quite a few years and they have enlarged my knowledge and appreciation of science and humanism. I also have learnt a lot about the politics of the USA.

Now, the Scathing Atheist is hilarious and rage inducing at the same time. There is also a lot of swearing and jokes about puppy rape. I love listening and recently became a Patreon. The guys who produce this podcast also make God Awful Movies. This is a weekly podcast in which they VOLUNTARILY watch christian cinema/films and take the piss out of them. It’s funny and opens up a new world of film and beliefs.

They have reviewed a number of films about the rapture and having listened to about twenty episodes I decided it would be a good idea to sit through a film, to understand just how bad they are. I watched Left Behind, click to visit the podcast page. I will admit that almost any film can be reduced to rubble when critically appraised it’s just that these guys stick with christian cinema [mostly]. Left Behind is a terrible film, it makes no sense. At all.

Gamcast episode 33 covers the cinematic marvels of God’s Not Dead 2. I listened to this and thought it would be good to see a film with a decent budget. However, it seemed unlikely that this would head out to Kent and as much as I like a day out in London I am NOT going to see christian cinema when I go there. It seemed I would have to wait to try and download this some time in the future.

I headed to Bluewater shopping centre and bought a pair of shoes in the time between arriving and having to endure watch the film. Now, I don’t like buying shoes or spending money on clothing and the such. It seems a waste. Yes, I do appreciate wearing clothes though. Anyway, new shoes were purchased. I headed to the Showcase cinema. Upon entering the auditorium it turns out some dude was in my seat. I’m not sure how that happens but he moved and sat next to me.

I was very curious as to the make up of the audience and whether they were there purely to take the piss and experience cinema shittery. The chap next to me seemed potentially mentally ill or possibly had a terrible headache, every ten minutes he would lean forward and rub his head, almost like praying, very odd. The rest of the cinema seemed normal I guess. There were about 30 people in the theatre, some families with teenage kids and some couples. I couldn’t get the measure of it.

So, I rated this film on IMDB and you should see this communication about my rating system and then return here to see how I broke the rules.

This was a bad film. The legal aspects of the film were bad. Everything was bad. I have also broken my system for rating films. But the lowest anyone can give is a 1 and so that is what I gave. Maybe I need to update my system, I don’t know.

Normally I would give you a run down of the movie and what I thought but instead you should go and listen to the God Awful Movie podcast episode covering this. Or see this tweet.

Also, you should go and buy the parody song written about this film. You can find it here. Or see this tweet:

This film did not disappoint. I honestly want to thank GAMcast and Scathing Atheist for giving the chance to experience this. I was really excited and it live down to expectations.