Black Mirror: Bandersnatch (2018)

black-mirror-bandersnatch-movie-review-posterDirector: David Slade

Genre: Sci-Fi, Thriller, Mystery, Drama

Runtime: Varies – Roughly 90 Minutes

Main Cast: Fionn Whitehead, Craig Parkinson, Alice Lowe, Will Poulter, Asim Chaudhry, Tallulah Haddon, Alan Asaad, Catriona Knox

Plot: Set in the 80s and played out like a Choose Your Own Adventure story, Bandersnatch is the story of a young gaming programmer who is adapting a dark fantasy novel with a morbid background into a video game.

My Thoughts: I love Black Mirror. I love video games. I love fantasy novels. Although it’s been well over a decade since I read one, I bloody love the Choose Your Own Adventure books. If ever there were a Netflix movie made with me in mind, Bandersnatch is the one. I can’t even tell you how excited I was to settle my toddler off to bed so I could eat cold pizza and watch it.

The ‘choose your own adventure’ concept obviously isn’t new, but this is the first time it’s been released in TV format, and I really hope it isn’t the only time either. I never thought I would find myself so stressed out about picking a cereal that I wasn’t even going to be eating!

So I made the mistake very early on of telling Satpal that I would work with him which clearly I wasn’t meant to do, I feel like most people would have made the same mistake which I thought was clever because we’re then introduced to the ‘game over’ feature quite early on. I suppose the downfall of Bandersnatch is that if you take the movie at face value without the gimmick, it’s not that strong of a story, as much as I enjoyed it.

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Best Bit: Spoilers ahead, because the best bit for me was the ending that I got. Our Bandersnatch game got rated 5/5, but we ended up in prison for murdering Dad. Years later, Colin’s daughter Pearl falls down the same rabbit hole as we did, as she adapts the video game Bandersnatch into a choose your own adventure movie for Netflix. I’ve since looked into the other possible endings and still feel like mine was the best.

Worst Bit: I really didn’t want to kill Dad…I wanted an option to question him further about everything he had done! I also slightly regret the choice to chop him up…that was a bit grim.

Fun Trivia: Some of the Black Mirror Easter eggs in the movie are Black Mirror episode titles, misspelled. The game titles METL HEDD and Nohzdyve, refer to Metalhead and Nosedive respectively.

My Rating: 4 and a half boxes of Frosties, which are superior in every way to Sugar Puffs. Seriously, who picked Sugar Puffs?!

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Review: Dunkirk (2017)

dunkirk-movie-review-2017I feel as movie bloggers we always encourage everyone around us to go and see movies at the cinema, to experience them in the way they should be, but deep down there are plenty of movies just as great viewed on our TVs at home, it’s just the atmosphere of the cinema that we enjoy so much. Big, action movies are obviously always great on the big screen but if there is ever a movie I will regret not seeing at the cinema, actually, in IMAX, it’s Dunkirk (2017).

Does anyone else feel like they were waiting ages for Dunkirk to be released? I’m sure we got that teaser trailer at least a year before it was actually released. I don’t know why I didn’t trek out for it, especially with Christopher Nolan at the helm, but I’ve never had much of an interest in historical or war movies.

Even as someone completely ignorant to history (it was my least favourite subject at school), I knew the story of what happened at Dunkirk, so I’ll be brief in explaining what it’s all about. The movie essentially follows several heroes in the evacuation of the soldiers trapped on the beach of Dunkirk during World War II.

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If you’ve seen the trailer, and felt the tension in those 2 minutes, that’s essentially what the entire movie is. 1 hour and 46 minutes of pure, white knuckled tension. In fact, I think there’s an argument to be made that Dunkirk isn’t a movie at all, it’s more of an experience. I felt drained after the credits rolled, and it wasn’t just baby-induced sleep deprivation, I swear.

Despite not getting and kind of backstory or development to any of the main characters, I really felt for every one of them, especially Tom Hardy and Cillian Murphy. I won’t talk spoilers here, but Cillian Murphy’s character winds up doing something awful, and yet I couldn’t feel anger towards him, and Tom Hardy’s character’s story was breathtaking and heartbreaking. Every story here is worth shouting about, but those are the two that stood out the most for me.

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As someone who avidly avoids movies in this genre, I honestly can’t say a bad word about Dunkirk, and I’ll be watching it again as soon as possible. I know it’s one my husband would enjoy so it might even be as soon as this weekend, we’ll see. Can I start a petition for it to be re-released in the cinema so I can see it properly? I can only imagine the atmosphere as each screen emptied after each viewing.

Out of respect for the true story behind this movie it seems wrong to do my usual silly rating, so I’m keeping it simple today and giving Dunkirk a well deserved 5 out of 5 stars. Probably my favourite movie of 2017, and even though I have so many of last year’s releases to catch up on, I’m confident it will stay as my number 1 choice!

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