Interview: Jack Raynor and Hannah Murray talk about their new film Detroit

Hey everyone! Been a while since I last did a blog post but tonight (16.08.17) I got to meet with Jack Raynor and Hannah Murray – two of the cast of the new Kathryn Bigelow movie Detroit (review coming soon) and here is what they had to say about the film.

Jack Raynor:

Detroit is a pretty moving and powerful movie, why did you want to be part of it?

That very fact. I read the script and thought it was going to be something that might hopefully have a profound impact on the audience. It’s a film about a very difficult systemic issue and doesn’t only exist in the US but all around the world and something that should certainly be addressed and Kathryn Bigelow is definitely the filmmaker to begin that conversation.

The interrogation scene in the Algiers Motel was pretty hard to watch, how was it filming for you?

It was quite a harrowing experience, not the kind of character you enjoy inhabiting. It’s something you have to be methodical in your approach with and try to understand your feelings about other people and assume the identity of a person who is least susceptible about feelings of supremacy and inequality. We spent weeks on it. At least six weeks shooting. It was very difficult.

The film, which is based on the Detroit race riots in the 1960s, seems to have come out at the perfect time after everything that happened in Charlottesville over the weekend.

It’s certainly a hard push to find a more topical film right now with what is happening in the states and also in the UK as well. We are seeing a resurgence of very right wing ideological beliefs and it’s not good. It’s condemnable and it has been condemnable since WW2 and it remains that way now. White supremacy is not something we can even consider as being acceptable in society neither is neo Nazism or the KKK. It’s very important that we are absolute in our refusal to allow these things to insidiously creep back into society and take control over our political systems again and I think this film is something that hopefully raises some part of that conversation.

When I was watching the film, I wanted there to be some sort of punishment given to the white police officers who murdered the three men but obviously, based on true facts and court reports, it never happened.

How did you feel about that when reading the script?

If it was already resolved it wouldn’t have happened anyway. This is the US we are talking about police don’t get prosecuted for killing African Americans. Largely they get away with that. It’s something that has been happening since the foundation of the state. It’s a heinous thing, it’s an awful awful issue, and has to be addressed and hopefully this film will once again raise that conversation.

Hannah Murray:

How did you feel when you first read the script?

I felt physically sick reading the script and afterwards as well. It was harrowing that these people went through what they did. It’s really shocking. That’s one of the reasons why Kathryn wanted to do it.

Is that why you wanted to get part in it? Was there a part of you that had to be in this movie?

I wanted to get involved in the film for many reasons, Kathryn being the main one but also the story it tells. It is about real people and real events that happened and it was great being a part of it.

As the film is sort of a social commentary on what happened and what is still happening, do you think it will have the impact on society that it deserves?

I hope the film has the impact that it deserves. It’s a really difficult question on how do you change people’s minds but hopefully this film will have some impact on it.

Detroit also stars John Boyega, Will Poulter and Anthony Mackie and is released on Thursday.

 

Interview: Actor and producer Nick Moran speaks about Celebrity MasterChef and new Edinburgh Fringe show

Here is my interview with actor and producer Nick Moran. We spoke about his upcoming play Performers at the Edinburgh Fringe, doing Celebrity MasterChef and how he feels about the ongoing BBC gender gap dispute.

So, tell me a bit more about your play Performers at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

What happened is I was attached to a film that Irvine Welsh had written about Alan McGee – the founder of Creation Records. It was a really slow project and was just driving us both mad. Irvine and his writing partner decided to turn it into a play instead at the Fringe. Irvine is such a big star in the Edinburgh circuit. So we organised a read-through with a couple of chaps and suddenly we had it up and running. All green lights. It’s a really rewarding project. It’s just great. I think people are going to love it.

So, is the play sort of based behind the scenes of the Mick Jagger gangster/psychedelic movie Performance?

It’s been great fun doing the research. David Lintoff is an incredibly interesting character. He used to find young waste and stray boys for the Kray twins and the slightly darker members of aristocracy. He was big in the underworld of showbiz but committed suicide a few years after Performance by unusual circumstances. Apparently the Kray twins gave him a big scar on his face. He was really fascinating and real. I didn’t know anything about him. As dark and strange as he was. In real life, Lintoff told real criminals to audition for a part in Performance and we have come up with two fictitious characters based around real people. It’s really funny. Two villains come into a casting audition. It’s hilarious. It’s such a simple but perfect premise.

We will all see you next on Celebrity MasterChef, how was that for you?

It’s been done now. I had a film fall through. I tend to get asked every year to do a show like this but I am usually busy but this time, I had come back from a big holiday and had nothing on the cards and I thought I had to keep myself busy. I got a job in HIX in Soho under a pseudonym and I was getting involved. I wasn’t watching another chef cook, some of the dishes going up were ones that I had done. I approached it as I was doing it as a film. It’s very stressful and not as fun as it seems. I wouldn’t do it again. I don’t think my wife would let me. It was a lot of stress. It’s a competition and I don’t think you learn on it. You show what you already know. You never see someone on there who doesn’t know what they are doing.

Obviously, you starred in Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels, would you be up for a sequel if Guy Ritchie wanted one?

I don’t know if that will happen. It’s down to Guy. It was fun after Trainspotting 2 was a success. A lot of people from the film haven’t seen each other for a long time. If he could afford Jason Statham now. Guy is my next door neighbour. I see him taking his rubbish out or carrying a baby. We moan about the bin men and those things because we are neighbours.

Guy recently put David Beckham in King Arthur: Legend of the Sword and now Harry Styles has had a cameo, do you think these celebrities should be in films?

It is down to the director. I put cameos in my films. It would be very hypocritical of me to comment on it. The only problem is that it can jolt you out of movie if the celebrity is really big. But like Arthur, it is a great big, visual popcorn feast so why not have David Beckham? If it was Shakespeare maybe not. People look for faults. I use cameos and films are better for them. Nothing wrong with it.

Recently the BBC were forced to reveal the salaries of their employees, how do you feel about the gender gaps?

I think there is some easily spun facts. I laughed out loud when I read it. They were trying to make it out that there weren’t sexist. Journalists are always spinning information to serve an opinion they already have. I know the workings of TV and it’s paid in the real world. How much budget the broadcaster has etc. The BBC shouldn’t have been forced to reveal it but it was no surprise. Gary Lineker hosts a show at BBC World which is sold to the world. Everything he says or he presents is his image. And he is not on as much as EU or USA. These are people at the top of their game. The top journalists in the country and the frontline for the BBC. There was nothing ridiculous in there. I want to see what the executives get. They get paid enormous amounts for not doing a lot of work. It was reassuring and what I was expecting.

Harry Potter Studios brings the magic out of the films

I was invited to attend the new costumes exhibtion at Harry Potter Studios Leavesden and every time I visit there it just get more magical.

Upon hearing the iconic Harry Potter theme song that many people have grown up listening to and wishing they were a wizard, it sends shivers down your spine.

Watching the well-known actors speak before the tour begins shows just how magical the world of Harry Potter is.

The screen then lifts and you’re there. At the entrance to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry – then the fun begins.

If people haven’t been there before, there is just so much too see. Whether it’s how the made the costumes, hats, props, set designs, creatures, Quidditch – it’s all right there for everyone to enjoy.

At the exhibition, we met with costume designer, Laurent Guinci, who designed many of the costumes worn by the cast including that of Rita Skeeter.

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Also, hair & make-up artists Lisa Tomblin and Amanda Knight demonstrated how Harry’s iconic lightning bolt scar was applied and how the look of Bellatrix LaStrange was created.

Milliner Philip Treacy was also there and allowed guests to try on the Iconic Beauxbatons hat and learn how it was brought from sketch to screen.

One particular new attraction that I found amazingly fun was sitting inside the costume of Professor Slughorn when he turned himself into a chair.

You are able to climb inside and see how actor Jim Broadbent had to do it for the movie.

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Follow my Instagram @steveb4567 to see how I got inside the chair

Travelling around the studios, you can see how Quidditch was brought to life and are able to walk through the latest attraction, the Forbidden Forest, where friendly Buckbeak is there greeting you and the giant spider Aragok is hiding as well.

Then you turn a corner and there it is, the Hogwarts Express, the beautiful, red train that transports Harry and his friends from Platform 9 3/4 to Hogwarts.

There is so much to see at the studios, the Dursley’s house, how Dobby came to life, Diagon Alley, it’s overwhelming.

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At the end of the tour, you do feel sad that the magic is ending but they leave you with the last bit of magic.

The giant sculpture of Hogwarts which was used in the films. As you walk around the theme song is played again and you begin to feel a sense of excitement and sadness.

This collection of books and films brought so many joy to people of all ages and they continue to still do.

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A fantastic tour and definitely worth paying a visit!

 

Spider-Man: Homecoming: Good film but something didn’t fit right

To say the hype for the release of the first ever Marvel Studios and Sony Pictures collaboration was big would be an understatement.

Director: Jon Watts

Writer: Jonathan Goldstein

Starring: Tom Holland, Robert Downey Jr, Marisa Tomei, Zendaya, Micheal Keaton

Running time: 2hrs 15mins

Release: July 7

Fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe have been waiting for this day since Tom Holland debuted as the web-slinger in Captain America: Civil War… but something just didn’t feel right.

The film is set after the events of Civil War and follows 15-year-old Peter Parker aka Spider-Man trying all he can to become an Avenger like his mentor Tony Stark aka Iron Man.

While being the ‘Friendly Neighbourhood Spider-Man’, the hero uncovers a villainous group using alien technology to power up weapons.

Thinking he is an Avenger, Spider-Man sets out to stop the group led by the Vulture and to become part of the infamous group of superheroes.

Spider-Man: Homecoming is probably one of the best web-slinger movies to date – although that’s not difficult – but something about it felt a bit too ‘Avengey’ for me.

I feel there was so much hype around it, it failed to live up to it – similarly to Avengers: Age of Ultron. It was so highly-anticipated that it didn’t have the success the first one had.

The whole premise of the story was Spider-Man trying to become a hero and trying to get Iron Man to actually allow him to be part of the Avengers and that was it.

Although, I know it’s not an origin story and it’s the first time that Marvel has created a standalone hero movie without giving the background to how they got their powers but I feel it was missing out on what makes an origin story great.

Tom Holland was brilliantly cast to play the young web-slinger and fans have already resembled him to that of the comic book character and so right they should.

The character has kept to its comic book origins which was brilliant. However, Aunt May (Tomei) was particularly young.

Maybe I am wrong but I though Aunt May was supposed to be this old woman?

The star of the film had to go to Zendaya. Although playing a minor role, as outsider Michelle, who ocassionaly cropped up every now and then with a one liner or hand gesture, she did steal the show.

She managed to keep the humour that every Marvel film has and it was brilliantly cast and I hope she returns for the sequel.

Although only in the film for short moments, I feel I am getting bored seeing Robert Downey Jr’s take on Iron Man in every Marvel film.

He is becoming the Wolverine of the MCU. I understand why he was in it but I just hope Marvel don’t follow the same footsteps that Fox have down with Hugh Jackman’s character.

One could argue that it should have been Nick Fury (Samuel L Jackson) who decides who becomes an Avenger but he has been absent from a number of MCU films and the actor himself doesn’t know whether he is set to return for Avengers: Infinity War.

The film did have some nice references to past films including the rebuilding of New York City following the events in the first Avengers film as well as references to Civil War and other MCU characters.

As well, it was visually stunning and the big fight sequence at the end was brilliant but once again, Marvel leaked too much information before this release.

We already know Tom Holland is set to star in Infinity War and that a Spider-Man sequel already has a release date, so it kind of gets a bit boring as you already know the fate of the characters.

Although this review sounds like I am completely slating the film, I thoroughly enjoyed it and as said it is the best Spider-Man film to date (even though I am particularly fond of Amazing Spider-Man).

Overall it is a great film and any fan of the MCU should go and see it. I would happily go see it again too.

The House: A comedy with serious, underlying themes

The new comedy by Neighbours director Andrew Jay Cohen deals with some very serious and very true themes and issues in modern day society.

Director: Andrew Jay Cohen

Writers: Andrew Jay Cohen, Brendan O’Brian

Starring: Will Ferrell, Amy Poehler, Jason Mantzoukas, Jeremy Renner

Running time: 88mins

Certificate: 15

Release date: June 30

The House is indeed a comedy that will keep you laughing throughout but the film actually tackles some tough problems in every day USA and the UK including the price of tuition fees.

The film follows Scott (Will Ferrell) and Kate (Amy Poehler) who spent all their daughter’s college funds and after not receiving the government grant they were hoping for, they set up an illegal casino in the house of their sex and gambling addict friend Frank (Jason Mantzoukas).

During the cause of the film the casino gets bigger and bigger and draws the attention of the local authorities who try to shut it down.

After seeing the trailer for this movie, I was already guaranteed it was going to be hilarious after the director managed to get an awesome cast with some of the biggest comedy names in Hollywood.

Ferrell is, of course, perfect as ever as the dad-turned-casino gangster who is terrible a maths, an hilarious theme that doesn’t add anything to the movie but shows the detail Cohen has made in the movie.

Parks and Recreation star Poehler is outstanding as the matriarch of the family and uses her comedy background to really enhance and bring to life her character.

Although not the main stars of the production, Mantzoukas’ portrayal as the loveable, gambling and sex addict Frank really stole the picture.

You immediately feel sorry for him the first time you see him on the screen and, after interviewing Mantzoukas, it’s why he was drawn to the character claiming the vulnerability of his character is what makes him loveable which is true.

One of the many highlights of the movie was having ‘Avengers’ star Renner making a cameo as the evil gangster.

Although he only appears towards the end of the film, his performance is completely different to his superhero counterpart and he does it perfectly.

Despite being a comedy, you watch the film and see the problems the character’s face are all real and happen to the everyday person.

Not being able to afford tuition is a big topic for all audiences around the globe and Cohen does really make it as hard hitting as possible (and also admitted to me that he got anxious researching how much a US college costs for the film here).

It is absolutely absurd how much college and university fees are these days and the film shows the character’s doing the most ridiculous thing possible to get their daughter into her preferred college.

Ridiculous is a good word to describe the film but not in a negative way. Although the film tackles serious issues and is based around parents and neighbours, some of the sequences are over dramatic but it all adds to the comedy of the film.

One particular Fight Club-esque scene really had my howling out loud in the cinema.

A brilliant film and will make you think what extremes are you willing to take to get the money to pay for university or college.

Interview: Jason Mantzoukas speaks about working with Jeremy Renner in The House

Jason Mantzoukas speaks to me about working on his new comedy The House starring Will Ferrell and Amy Poehler. His character Frank is a sex and gambling addict but is loveable.

What drew you to the role of Frank?

Firstly it is a really funny script and role. The idea that I could work with all these amazing people – many of whom I have worked or known for a long time. The cast was just exceptional. Those were the two real kinds of reasons what drew me to the role.

How was it working with Amy again?

I have known Amy for years. We both came out of the same comedy theatre in New York. We’ve done comedy shows with each other as well as TV shows. It was so fun to be able to do something on this scale and a big movie. It was very exciting.

And Will? Was this your first time working with him?

Yes it was my first time working with Will. I’ve known him for many years. Working with him was horrible. He is such a jerk. No I’m joking he is the best. I think he is so incredibly funny and always have. When I watched him on Saturday Night Live, I was amazed. He could not be a more generous guy. He is so generous. He will laugh at stuff. The whole movie is a group of people who have known each other for a long time and cracking each other up.

It did seem like it was a lot of fun on set?

A 100 per cent. There were no turkeys in the group. Everyone was a heavy hitter. Whether or not people were shooting everyone was just cracking jokes and trying to make everyone laugh.

There did seem to be some improv during the film, was that intended?

There was definitely improve. Andy Cohen had written a great script. We used the script and then he allowed use to improve. In putting this cast together – putting a group of people of improv background – there was this instant rapport. We all spoke the same improv language.

Your character Frank is both a gambling and sex addict but loveable. Is this what you liked about him?

Very much. He was very important to me he have the loveable and vulnerable side and not just some sort of gambling/sex addict monster. Most importantly you had to believe that the three of us want would be friends. If he didn’t have that engine predominantly that is just heartbreak and grief it would have been a much more difficult character to get on board. It’s important that he had that emotional engine that’s driving him.

The film also shows the dark side of gambling and you three turn into gangster/mobsters. How was filming that?

It was so fun. All those kind of stylistic choices to make it feel like a big Scorsese movie. It goes from rinky dink to these much bigger camera moves and it does feel like a gangster movie. To have scenes with the finger chopping off scene and the Jeremy Renner stuff really raised the stakes. It just visually gave different new levels of what this film could do.

There were a lot of weapons on set so were there any accidents on set?

Any accidents? No everything went off perfectly as planned. We had great stuntmen and fighting choreographers who were terrific. Especially getting into the finger chopping and Jeremy Renner gets lit on fire. These are incredibly dangerous pieces to film but they know what’s going on and are very attentive to the safety of us. The fire scene took a long time to shoot.

How was it working with Jeremy Renner as the villain?

I loved it. I thought it was great. I have seen Renner in Hurt Locker and that Bourne movie. He’s done a great range of movies and he came really ready to go and bounced off everyone. He came in really just for those scenes and we had already done tremendous amounts of filming. He just turned up and immediately was amazing. We were like ‘holy cow this is great. What a great charming villain he is’.

Interview: Andrew Jay Cohen talks tuition fees, working for Will Ferrell and inspirations for The House

I had the chance to interview filmmaker Andrew Jay Cohen about his latest film The House starring Will Ferrell, Amy Poehler and Jason Mantzoukas. He spoke about getting inspiration for the film and working the great cast.

Where did you get inspiration for this film?

When I was young I always playing poker and as a freshman in high school, we would gather in our basement to play. We thought we were cool. Originally the film was going to be about the kids at college but after I wrote Neighbours the adult struggles just busted it wide open. Once I started thinking about being a dad it just became so absurd. Putting Will and Amy in the worst financially situation not being able to afford college. It was just great. Once it is about a real person it becomes more relatable to the audience. What do you do when you catch a cheater? Take him to the garage? I just realised I can’t intimidate someone like a gangster can.

There was a lot of improve in the film was that intentional?

I believe that you need a strong script. I do believe in that and a great blue print and game plan. But once I’m on set, if an actor can’t say those prepositions in that way then we find other ways. I find that irresistible and is the spirit of writing. I love going down the rabbit hole with actors. There is a feeling of authenticity. It’s like you are filming two people interacting rather than something created.

Was this your first time working with the cast?

Worked with Will on Anchorman and on the last day of shooting he came up to me and told me there was no film in the camera all filled with coffee. I was like ‘he made fun of me I know I made it’. When I was writing the script I kept having his voice in my head. He is able to deliver lines. We were quoting Anchorman before it even came out. I like those movies where words and phrases and characters will just resonate in your head. It had to feel loose and like anything can happen.

The film does tackle some cultural topics and do you think more films should do this?

Absolutely. I think all movies should come from reality or us it as a jumping off point. It’s very relatable. I set up a 529 for my kid and was comparing what I have with the cost of semester and it just made me anxious. So I put that into the most stupid thing. Here’s a problem its very really, what’s the worst thing you could solve it? There’s probably ways Scott and Kate could have solved it but it just happens to be the only way to solve it. It’s a real starting point. I’ve always been taught that’s the most important and is always my starting point.

It also looks at the dark side of gambling as well.

I really thought it was hysterical if we treated them with some epic vision Scorsese would. It veers in tone and that was so much fun. I’ve been watching Scorsese movies and studying what made them resonant and make that in a comedy.

Could there be a potential sequel?

I would love to do a sequel. As she is going to college who knows what will happen. The head of the studio set up his own casino in is dorm room so who knows.

The House is in UK cinemas on June 30. Plus I will be providing a review for that date as well.

Wonder Woman: Saves the world and saves the franchise

Following the poorly received contributions to the DC External Universe franchise it is always worrying when you sit in the cinema waiting to watch the next instalment hoping it won’t be as bad as the previous and Wonder Woman shines a fresh new light on the movies.

Director: Patty Jenkins

Writer: Geoff Johns

Starring: Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Robin Wright, David Thewlis, Danny Huston

Certificate: 12A

Running time: 2hr 21mins

The origin story follows how the sexy lasso-swinging hero became who we know and love today and the film is probably the best movie in the DCEU franchise – but that is not overly difficult.

Wonder Woman opens with modern-day Paris with a voiceover by the titular character herself who is being followed by men working for Bruce Wayne aka Batman.

After receiving a parcel the film then goes back in time to when the superhero, Princess Diana (Gal Gadot), is growing up in the women-only Amazonian land of Themyscira– where we and Diana learn about the battle of the Gods and the evil Aries.

Diana then meets American spy Steve Trevor (Chris Pine) who crashes his plane into the water. Saving him Diana leaves the island with him to go and battle Nazis or as Diana believes Aries.

One thing the film has that not many other of the DCEU movies have is constant humour between the characters – whether it’s Diana’s naivety about the new world she is discovering or whether it’s the people she meets trying to understand who she is.

It never fails to keep you entertained and I even found myself doubting whether her belief in Aries was, in fact, true or just a story she was told.

There were some parts where I was more leaning towards the film being over fantastical but of course, it’s a superhero movie and relies on fantastical elements.

Gadot’s stunning performance as the titular character was brilliant. After seeing her in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice I admit I was skeptical how she would be in her own stand-alone movie.

But nevertheless, she was fantastic. She manages to perfectly execute the naïve woman Diana is when in the ‘real world’.

Pine also manages to grasp the humour side of the film, especially when trying to come to terms with the powers of Diana.

Wonder Woman is full of adult humour and sexual innuendos which just makes the film watchable. Nothing is too serious or boring.

This movie not only marks the first time Wonder Woman has had her own standalone movie but also marks the first time in both DC and Marvel that a female superhero has the titular role and director Patty Jenkins knew exactly what she was doing.

Although the epic battle sequence towards the end was a little bit farfetched and over the top, you couldn’t help but find the film somewhat refreshing from the previous additions to the DCEU.

For anyone who is a Wonder Woman fan, and I am sure there are many, will definitely enjoy the film and those skeptical about the DCEU will be delightfully surprised.

Whether or not there will be a Wonder Woman sequel (but due to the success of the first one I am probably sure there will be) fans can expect to see Gadot donning the sexy, infamous costume again in Justice League.

Pirates of the Caribbean: Salazar’s Revenge: Typical film where a studio exploits a popular franchise

The fifth installment of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise is cinematically brilliant but it’s just too fantastical and rehashes concepts from the first movie.

Director: Joachim Ronning, Espon Sandberg

Writer: Jeff Nathanson

Starring: Johnny Depp, Geoffrey Rush, Javier Bardem, Brenton Twaites, Kaya Scodelario, Orlando Bloom

Certificate: 12A

Running time: 2hrs 9mins

Release Date: May 26

Pirates of the Caribbean: Salazar’s Revenge is a highly anticipated movie after it was revealed Orlando Bloom and Kiera Knightly would be reprising their roles as Will Turner and Elizabeth Swan respectively, however, the film is just too much.

The film follows Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) and his new shipmate Henry Turner (Brenton Thwaites) – the son of the hero and heroine from the first three movies – as they try to track down the lost Trident of Poseidon.

However, as their journey takes them across the seas they are followed in pursuit by the dead Captain Salazar (Javier Bardem) and his crew who seek to get revenge on Jack.

Cinematically, the film is brilliant and to say the franchise was developed from a ride in the various Disneylands around the world the movies have done well in cinema’s history but this one is probably the worse out of the five.

It seems these days Disney are just rehashing and rebooting successful franchises and narratives such as Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

The fifth franchise has a ship of dead sailors trying to break a curse and a strong, confident female character who continually seems to wear a long dress.

Yes, this description could be used for both Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl and the new one.

However, the difference is the first movie was gritty, dark and in a way realistic whereas Salazar’s Revenge went a bit overboard (pardon the pun) on the fantastical.

Some of the dead sailors had half their faces blown off, were just arms floating in mid-air but still wielding swords and dead sharks brought to life to chase down their enemies – all a bit ridiculous.

Many of the scenes were also too long winded, in particular, a robbing the bank scene which seemed to last for nearly half the film and didn’t really have any point to it and could have easily been cut down.

Fans of the franchise, including myself, were overjoyed when the trailer revealed Orlando Bloom and Kiera Knightly were set to rejoin the franchise after being omitted from the fourth movie.

However, their parts don’t seem to be any benefit to the plotline and with the introduction of Thwaites as their son, they didn’t really need to be involved in the film but instead just mentioned as fans would know who they were.

Orlando, whose character Will Turner is now the Captain of the Flying Dutchman, is supposed collect those who died at sea and take them to his locker however so many sailors die in this movie and yet his presence is omitted.

Depp was as always fantastic in his role but the franchise has been overdone now and if there will be another addition he needs to hang up his captain hat and retire. The role is overdone and overplayed.

Bardem was perfect as the Spanish murderous villain but there was sometimes parts where he was speaking and it was hard to fully understand him due to his mouth being full of blood.

Thwaites, although a good actor, didn’t shine as bright as he could have done in this franchise and Scodelario just reimagined the character of Elizabeth Swan just a few years younger – she, just like Knightly did, wore a dress the entire movie and had constant digs at the lifestyle of pirates.

Of course, Geoffrey Rush was brilliant as Captain Barbossa and it was great to see him as a pirate again rather than being on the side of the English as he was in the fourth installment.

Number four in the franchise, On Stranger Tides, brought more than just the living dead into the movies with mermaids being featured and it seemed the follow-up movie kept to that fantastic-ness and was more Peter Pan-esque than swashbuckling pirates.

Although there is a lot of criticism against the movie, it was still very enjoyable to watch and parts were great both narratively and cinematically.

However, this has to be the end of the franchise. The film brings everything to a perfect close and it would ruin an already stretched out collection of movies if there was to be a sixth.

Anyone who is a fan of the movies should go see it for nostalgia purposes and prepare for another great performance from the amazing Depp.

But be prepared to find yourself thinking it wasn’t as great as the original.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2: Energetic, cinematically stunning but lacking in narrative

A sequel is always hard to live up to the expectations fans have especially with a heavy fan-base of the Marvel Cinematic Universe but Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 suffers from lack of plot.

Director and writer: James Gunn

Starring: Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel, Kurt Russell

Running time: 136mins

Certificate: 12A

Release date: April 28

The next instalment of the Guardians of the Galaxy franchise has long been anticipated since the release of the first movie back in 2014 and it did keep the humour and comedic elements but it struggled with a plot.

The film follows the Guardians as they struggle to keep the ‘family’ together as it tires to unravel the mystery of Peter Quill’s (Chris Pratt) true parentage in the outer reaches of the galaxy.

And really all the film does is deal with a lot of speaking and lack of worthwhile action. The film is purely a mechanism to develop Quill and to give all the other Guardians somewhat of a back story.

Of course the franchise needs to bring into the matter of his parentage but that’s all it really did.

Pratt and the rest of the cast got back into their respective alien characters and you could clearly see they all enjoyed working alongside each other making the movie.

One of the best parts of the film was the soundtrack, something similar from the first movie, if you like 80s music and cameos from Sylvestor Stallone and David Hasselhoff then definitely go and see it.

Eventually as the film continues you find out a big secret but you have to wait up until the last 45 minutes. The rest of the film is simply talking except for an opening battle scene.

Half way through I began question what actually has happened so far to which my mind was blank.

One of the best developments was the character of Nebula (Karen Gillan) as a sort of archnemesis to the Guardians we see her true bitterness and hatred towards her sister Gamora and father Thanos.

Also the film begs the question whether the new character Mantis will become a pivotal role in the next movies.

With the mentioning of Infinity Stones and Thanos the film was clearly building up to the next Avengers movies which is great but because the studios have released a timeline of the next movies it is a major spoiler.

I didn’t find myself sat on the edge of my seat (cliche intended) because I knew there couldn’t have been any major deaths as they are all set to star in the upcoming Avengers: Infinity War and the Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3.

The Guardians of the Galaxy are known for the use of humour and comedic effects to move the plot along but the sequel had a lot of these elements and it got somewhat tedious watching Baby Groot dance around and not really do much else.

Although Baby Groot was a fan favourite and exceptionally cute, it seemed he was used to fill in five to ten minutes of nothingness and it was slightly irritating.

Despite slating the film in this review, it was perfectly executed and visually stunning and worthy of a watch just for the cinematic elements.

If you don’t know already the film has five post credit scenes. Five? Yes, five. However there is only really one that is relevant to the franchise progression.

Nevetheless the film was good and I did laugh at some of the humour and I am excited to see how the Guardians fit in with the Avengers next year.