Phil’s choice on Thursday was The English Patient, but his old DVD of it didn’t work properly on our bluray player, so that’s postponed until next week. Instead he had a look on Netflix and for want of anything better chose Triple Frontier (2019) which we had seen before and Phil thought was good, whilst I couldn’t remember any of it. Starring Ben Affleck, Oscar Isaac, Charlie Hunman, Garrett Hedlund and Pedro Pascale. They play a group of USA Delta Force Army veterans who unite to do a heist job of a South American drug lord’s hideaway, where all his money is stored. Things don’t go as planned, but neither is the way in which the story plays out predictable. There are plenty of ‘heist’ movies out there, but this one is a cut above due to the acting and characters involved. It is well directed by J.C.Chandor who juggles action with the building of characters and back stories, and the excellent cinematography by Romano Vasyanov. Good reviews from the critics too.
My choice for the Saturday fun movie was Venom (2018), another movie which both of us had seen and didn’t remember much about. It’s a Marvel Movie, but not part of the MCU/Avengers series, so stands alone until the sequel arrives. Venom is not a superhero either.
Directed by Ruben Fleischer the movie has Carlton Drake, played by Riz Ahmed as a CEO of a corporation looking for habitable planets, finding a comet inhabited by symbiotic life forms and bringing 4 of them back to earth. The rocket ship crashes, and one of the symbiotes escapes whilst the others are transported back the the corporation headquarters laboratories. The symbiotes can’t live in our atmosphere and have to merge with a human to survive. Reporter Eddy Brock (Tom Hardy) has lost his job, appartment and fiance after having dealings with Carlton Drake, and breaks into the labs with the help of a Doctor who works there and is distressed that Drake is using homeless/destitute humans to merge with the symbiotes, most of whom are dying in the process. Eddy recognises one of the homeless victims and when he tries to release her ends up with the symbiot, Venom, inside him. This is where the movie gets to be fun as the interaction between Eddy and Venom starts up. No spoilers as always so we’ll leave the plot right there. Firstly this movie was panned by the critics, but that’s par for the course on anything to do with comic book movies, and secondly I never read comic books so can’t comment on how it differs or what other people thought of that. Apparently Venom is part of the Spiderman series, but none of that was mentioned in the movie which I think upset some fans. Jeez guys, it’s just a story!! Phil and I enjoyed it a lot, and Phil isn’t one for these kind of movies generally. Tom Hardy is great in most anything he does and that seemed to me to be the case here, he carries this movie all the way to the box office. He also does the voice for the Venom part of him which surprised me as it sounds like the guy who plays Megatron in Transformers, but no it’s all Tom and some frequency modulation! Riz Ahmed as Carlton Drake is not a caricature villain, more an Elon Musk kinda guy, and Michelle Williams as Eddy’s ex-fiancée gives a nuanced performance and is easy on the eye. I am looking forward to the sequel, when Woody Harrelson will be the next bad guy to join the party.