Action/Comedy Weekend – The Living Daylights, The IT Crowd & Dredd

MLKdayHappy Martin Luther King Jr Day!

It’s cool that it also happens to be Obama’s second presidential inauguration day. I posted two MLK-related movie posts [here and here] two years in a row to celebrate our hero of the civil rights movement. I don’t know if any of those films are going to be made anytime soon. I certainly hope so, I’d love to see a proper biopic made on Mr. King.

Well, this weekend I didn’t go to the movies, apart from The Last Stand screening I went to last week. Too bad that it bombed, I thought it was a fun action flick. I wasn’t expecting it to win the box office, but at the very least it’d make it to the top 5. In any case, it’s a big weekend for Jessica Chastain with TWO of her movies at number 1 and 2 at the box office. I don’t think I’ll be seeing Mama but nice to see Zero Dark Thirty is still gaining momentum.

Well, it’s been quite an action/comedy-filled week for me. Here’s a breakdown of what I saw:

The Living Daylights (1987)

TLD_DeviantArtFanPoster

[Poster courtesy of DeviantArt – LOVE it!]

I don’t know how many times I’ve seen this movie but I love it more every single time… and Timothy Dalton is the main reason for it. Every time I watch his Bond movie it’s a bittersweet moment as I miss that third outing I wish he had done… I often imagine what it’d be like to have a Skyfall-quality production with him in the role. Oh be still my heart! I’ve already posted a review of this movie a couple of years ago but I plan on doing a proper appreciation post for The Living Daylights to celebrate its Blu-ray Amazon release next month! I’ve already pre-ordered my copy 😀
,,,


The IT Crowd (BBC sitcom, 2006-2010)

TheITCrowd

Thanks to all who recommended this sit-com to me when I mentioned Chris O’Dowd on this ‘discovery’ post! O’Dowd, Richard Ayoade and Katherine Parkinson are so hilarious! The show is about a ragtag group of tech support workers who works at the basement at a large corporation. It’s classic, off-the-wall British humor which I love and everyone is just hysterically funny, even the supporting cast: the CEO Denholm (Christopher Morris) and Richmond (Noel Fielding whom I’ve just found out from Novia from the Mighty Boosh show). I’ve watched about six episodes so far on Season 1, so a lot of catching up to do as there are four years worth of stuff to watch. I’ll never get tired of Roy [or his recording] answer the phone with:

Hello, IT. Have you tried turning it off and on again?


Dredd (2012)

DreddPoster

In a violent, futuristic city where the police have the authority to act as judge, jury and executioner, a cop teams with a trainee to take down a gang that deals the reality-altering drug, SLO-MO.

I LOVE Karl Urban but I knew I can’t handle this movie on the big screen, let alone watch in 3D! Seriously, this movie is so gory I’d probably pass out. It’s one of the most violent movies I have ever seen, I think I had my eyes closed a couple dozen times, at least. My hubby actually cued me when the really gruesome stuff was on as he knew it’ll give me nightmares. The movie is only 95 minutes long, though with all that slo-mo [no, I don’t mean the drug but the film-making style], it’s probably only an hour long ahah. Boy, but was it intense. Right from the opening sequence when Dredd was tailing a gang of criminals using the banned substance, the action rarely let up.

DreddPics

This is quite a different movie I expected from English director Pete Travis, whose credit include Endgame and BBC miniseries The Jury [which featured one of my favorite Gerry Butler roles]. Dredd is super violent, bloody and gruesome, but yet the style & sfx is quite distinctive. I question whether it’s necessary for it to be so gory though, some of it could’ve been toned down a bit and perhaps still achieve the desired effect. I mean, I get that they’re trying to portray this tarnished, grim dystopian world, but at times the violence seems to have be done as pure shock value.

That said, I thought the script by Alex Garland (28 Days Later, Sunshine) is pretty good, it’s not unnecessarily convoluted, plus the self-satirical humor actually works. Yeah, I wish I could see more of Karl Urban’s gorgeous face, but y’know what, he’s VERY good in this role. He’s able to somehow act with his voice and mouth alone, and partnering him with a rookie psychic Anderson (a blond Olivia Thirlby) is brilliant as it brings a level of humanity to his robot-like persona. Stunning Lena Heady as the drug lord Ma-Ma is even more bad ass than 300‘s Queen Gorgo, sporting a huge scar on her cheek, she looks like a sadistic mutant.

The movie’s definitely not for the squeamish [and I’m one of them], but I’m glad I gave it a shot. It’s a decidedly simple story but the execution [pun intended] hits the bulls eye. I never read the comics but I read some reviews that this pleased die-hard comic fans. Well, it might’ve won over new ones, too!

4 out of 5 reels


Well, that’s my weekend viewings. Did you see anything good?

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62 thoughts on “Action/Comedy Weekend – The Living Daylights, The IT Crowd & Dredd

  1. Ted S.

    I really enjoyed The Living Daylights too, Dalton actually wanted the film to be more serious but because the audience at the time still expecting some silly stuff, they had to make the film less gritty than it could’ve been. I think Albert Brocolli vetoed Dalton’s idea of making a totally serious Bond film.

    I liked Dredd but it wasn’t anything special, I just wish it had an actual plot so I can get involved in the story more. But it’s a small budget film so they had to come up with a script that fits their finance.

    I finally saw The Hobbit over the weekend, liked it but I wish I went to see it at regular IMAX instead of the high frame rate one. All of the action sequences looked like video game because of the higher frame rate.

    1. So that’s why they got the dufus Joe Don Baker as the main villain, that’s just so silly! I mean I cringe when I saw them together as the level of artistry is just so different. I think Baker is better with Brosnan, ahah. I think Licence To Kill is pretty serious by Bond’s standard. I still mourn for what could’ve been Dalton’s third outing 😦

      I actually don’t mind the simple plot, and I actually thought the emotional resonance came from his partner Anderson so it’s not as ‘cold’ as I thought it would be. I think Alex Garland is a great screenwriter. It’s not a bad movie at all for being a small budget.

      Oh good that you finally saw The Hobbit. So are you gonna do a post on HFR for me? 😀

      1. Ted S.

        Yeah, that’s why I think TLD is Dalton’s second best Bond flick, they still wanted to make it similar to Moore’s silly Bond but I remember reading Dalton refused to do it. I guess they compromised. But yeah License to Kill was more of what Dalton wanted to do, unfortunately audiences back then still couldn’t buy a serious Bond film because they’re used to Moore’s version.

        Sure I’ll write a quick thoughts on HFR.

        1. It’s interesting that Cubby Broccoli REALLY wanted Dalton but yet he still forced him to do things that he knew Dalton’s not a fan of. I mean, didn’t he realize what kind of actor Dalton is? I mean if he wanted someone that’s opposite of Moore, why do the same things he did, y’know? That’s why I’m glad John Glenn decided to scrap the ‘magic carpet’ scene (it was in the Deleted Scenes), I mean that’s just too silly like Moore would’ve done!

          Cool, I’ll perhaps post the Arnie post/poll on Thursday.

  2. Oh my gosh, this is really a big coincidence. It just so happens I watched the Living Daylights again last night, just because I love Timothy Dalton’s interpretation of Bond the best out of all the Bonds, and when I was scrolling through my reader I saw this. I was like “whoa, what’s this?” and immediately came to check it out. I really wished Dalton made a third movie too and om my god, yes, I can just imagine him Skyfall like bond, it would be awesome. It’s nice to know that I’m not the only one who likes Dalton’s Bond! 🙂

    1. Hello Nina! Welcome to FC! I’m always thrilled to meet a fellow Dalton fan. He’s my favorite Bond even after Craig came along. I often dream what it’d be like with Dalton in Casino Royale or Skyfall, oh my! He’s got the toughness of Craig but he’s also soooo beautiful to look at, so it’s beauty, brawn and brains all in one package. I talk about Dalton a lot here, I invite you to this appreciation post on Licence to Kill https://flixchatter.net/2012/09/27/spotlight-on-my-favorite-bond-timothy-dalton-in-licence-to-kill/, I’ll be sure to do one on The Living Daylights as well!

      1. Yes! Yes it is definitely great meeting another Dalton fan! And yessss Dalton is way too beautiufl to only have only two films. Lol, I saw the post, loved it. Seriously, I can’t remember when I started thinking that Dalton was the best Bond, but it’s been a while. When I watched Skyfall (I was finally convinced that Daniel Craig comes second on the list of best Bonds, right after Dalton, though I think equal to Connery – since Connery was the first…) my friend asked me, why do you like Bond? It took me a moment to realise, that the Bond Dalton portrays, was The main reason why I like James Bond. Omg, what am I ranting about Lol. Anyway, love Bond, Love Dalton – especially in The Living Daylights, (and referring to you post, which I totally agree) Dalton plays a dark, serious Bond that goes along the same train as Daniel Craig, which makes him mysterious. Anyway….I shall be watching your blog for more posts like this one and the other ;P and any others on Bond, love them. Blah, sorry for the rant…I completely ranted there!

        1. Ahah, you are welcome to rant away, especially when it comes to Bond and especially Dalton 😉 Yeah, I think I probably rate Craig equal to Connery in ranking, but Dalton will always be first for me. I just like Dalton as an actor in general, he’s my favorite Jane Eyre’s Rochester as well.

          If you like Bond and Dalton, I invite you to check out all the posts on 007 Chatter series (https://flixchatter.net/category/007-chatter/) which mentions a lot of Dalton [natch], I even think he’d make a splendid Bond villain [https://flixchatter.net/2011/01/27/question-of-the-week-which-actors-would-you-like-to-see-as-bond-villain/] What do you think?

          1. Hehehe of course ;P. Yep, Dalton’s always first for me, he’s just the right mix of everything I think Bond should be. No way! I didn’t know he played Rochester in one of the Jane Eyre adaptations, ooohh it makes me want to go read the book, just so I can watch Dalton as Rochester, or maybe I’ll just watch it…
            I will definitely check out all posts!
            Oh yeah, I wouldn’t have minded Sean Connery much but I think I watched one too many spoofs/parodies/comedies of spy movies where the originally lines/plots are from Connery’s films. I just can’t help but think – Austen Powers – no wait – Get Smart – even if I did like the spoofs/parodies/comedies, they kind of ruined the earlier Bond films for me…

            1. Yes Nina, he indeed played the ultimate Byronic hero perfectly… see my tribute here: https://flixchatter.net/2011/03/11/reminiscing-on-my-fave-rochester-jane-eyre-1983-bbc-miniseries/ and here https://flixchatter.net/2011/04/15/the-flix-list-15-favorite-period-drama-heroes-part-i/ [as you can see, I’ve got a ton of Dalton’s roles covered, ahah]

              I like Connery as Bond, he’s quite the eye candy too, but his films are so dated that I can’t enjoy them as much any more. Ahah yeah, the spoofs certainly makes you cringe. That’s why I think Dalton/Craig’s style suit modern audiences better.

              1. Yes, you have indeed got all the Dalton roles covered! He’s definitely worth writing about haha

                Yeah, Connery’s Bond is good, he’s the original after all, and though he is a playboy, he’s not as much as Roger Moore, and yeah, I agree, in his first films, when he’s younger, he’s pretty good eye candy. When he gets older though, it makes me cringe a bit, and I can’t believe they tried to make him look Japanese..that was impossible. Yeah, my friend loves Craig as Bond, and I told her she should check out Dalton’s films, because she doesn’t like Moore. I still like Connery’s films, but like you said, they are dated.

    1. He..he.. no, no. I’m still very squeamish about violence, but if I like the story and I think it was well-made, I’d be generous in my rating. I still won’t go out of my way and seek out this types of movies.

  3. I just went through the IT Crowd recently too (maybe mid 2012) and I loved it! It’s easy to see why it’s such a cult hit in the US.

    Also, Dredd was good stuff! Nothing revolutionary but a fun action flick. I was surprised to hear that Alex Garland wrote the script, I’m a huge fan.

    1. Glad to hear it, Lindsay! BBC comedies are quite addictive, I can’t believe I haven’t heard of it until recently.

      Yeah, I was intrigued when I knew Garland wrote it as his movies w/ Danny Boyle were very good. I wouldn’t mind seeing a sequel of Dredd though for sure I still won’t see it in 3D!

    1. Yeah it was really gory, which I don’t think is necessary. Urban was fantastic though, I think it’s a good decision that they never showed without his helmet, and the dynamic between him and Anderson was pretty interesting too.

  4. I was also surprised with how good Karl Urban was in Dredd, amazing that he could convey so much with his chin. I don’t necessarily go in for violent films but I did rather enjoy the crunching brutality of it. Glad you are enjoying the IT Crowd, it’s pure genius.

    1. Hi Russ. Urban is a terrific actor, I wish he got more roles in Hollywood. Yes I’m always amazed by actors who could convey so much without the use of their facial features or eyes, much like Hugo Weaving in V For Vendetta, and interesting that both are from Down Under 😀 I think there was enough going for it in Dredd that I was willing to tolerate the violent content, though I still shade my eyes.

      Yes IT Crowd is genius indeed!

  5. Glad to hear that Dredd is worth checking out. I believed it performed poorly at the box office so I’m not sure there will be a sequel. If nothing else its what the Dredd series should’ve always been.

    1. I guess the hard R rating might have something to do with the box office performance. I wouldn’t mind seeing a sequel with the same cast and director, but then again I’d rather see Karl Urban in some other roles as well where I can see his face 😉

  6. The Living Daylights is one of my favorite Bond films! 🙂

    Glad you liked Dredd, which I’d give the same rating. I just watched it before I posted my ballot (probably so I could nominate it for its awesome production design), and I loved it. It’s a film I will definitely revisit in the future.

    1. Wahoo! Glad to hear that Josh! 😀

      I was surprised how much I like Dredd, that’s why I gave it a high rating despite its violent content. For me, if the film is well-crafted w/ good script + performances, I’m not going to knock off the points just because I don’t like the violence. Still, I could do without some of the super gory visuals, especially in the beginning with the dead bodies being dropped from 100+ stories!

  7. The Living Daylights is such a good Bond film and although i always end up ranking Dalton 4th best out of the Bond actors, I always feel bad. He’s so good in this film that I just wish he could have done a few more.

    Good to see that you enjoyed the IT Crowd – I’m a big fan of that show!

    1. Hi Mr Rumsey! Dalton as #4 as Bond?? It’s a travesty! 😦 I think he elevated his two Bond films beyond what it could’ve been otherwise with someone else in the role. For me, I rate the actor on his own merit, I mean certainly the production quality could’ve been better, but Dalton is superb nonetheless.

      Glad to hear you like IT Crowd though, can’t imagine people not enjoying that show. It’s so hilarious!

      1. I do feel very bad putting him so low down 😦 And yeah he did a lot for his films. But I can’t help but place Craig, Connery and Brosnan above him.
        Have you seen any of the American version of the IT Crowd? I only saw about two minutes but it was terrible compared to the original.

        1. I’d never put Brosnan above Dalton, he’s just not in the same league in terms of his ability as an actor, let alone as James Bond.

          No, I haven’t seen the US version of The IT Crowd and I don’t know if I want to, I’m sure it’s dreadful.

          1. Oh yeah Dalton is the better actor than Brosnan, and that’s by a considerable degree as well. But Brosnan gives us such a great mixture of Bond’s attributes, plus stars in my favourite of all the Bond movies – GoldenEye.

            Yeah avoid it at all cost would be my advice. 🙂

            1. The US Show was cancelled after the pilot, if I am not mistaken. But to be honest, I am glad it never made it into US version even though Richard was supposed to play Moss even in US

            2. The thing that makes me dislike Brosnan is his smug style as Bond. It’s like he’s been DYING to play the role so he’s almost over-acting and has too much of that ‘complacent’ look on his face. Plus I read that he’s bitter that The Living Daylights went to Dalton because he couldn’t get out of the Remington Steele contract and didn’t even want to see the movie! I mean dude, Dalton was considered by the Broccolis looong before you even got a job as an actor, chill out!

              Sorry, I just can’t forgive him for his attitude against Dalton, whilst Dalton is such a classy guy that he won’t even bad mouth Roger Moore even though he doesn’t agree with his Bond style. I think Moore and Dalton are friends.

              1. I understand him being bitter about the Living Daylights – it’s one of the best for sure 😀 Yeah his attitude toward it may not be perfect, but it’s nothing when compared to other Bond actors over the years. Lazenby springs to mind.

                I doubt we will be able to get each other to agree with the others positions haha! Still though, I do rate Dalton highly. In fact I would say he’s very unlucky that Craig has two excellent films under his belt (Casino Royale and Skyfall) because their style and interpretation of Bond is pretty similar, and therefore I can’t help but place Craig one rank above Dalton.

                1. Yeah, Lazenby’s definitely doesn’t have the maturity to handle stardom. It was interesting to watch the interviews on OHMSS. I quite like the film itself though.

                  I hear ya about Craig. He’s my second favorite after Dalton, and he’s extremely fortunate to work with such stellar directors, actors and production folks like Roger Deakins! I mean, I kept thinking how Dalton would’ve looked like in a Bond movie shot by Deakins, oh my!

                  In any case, it’s always fun to talk about Bond isn’t it? Thanks for indulging me 😀

                  1. Yeah OHMSS has a lot of good parts to it, not least Diana Rigg and that score!

                    It certainly is always good to talk Bond 😀 No problem, thanks for putting up with me and my view on Dalton!

  8. LOL I was wondering myself how many time you had seen “The Living Daylights”. So Im glad you actually said you dont know. 😀

    I thought Dredd was pretty good too! I was surprised by how much I liked it!

    1. He..he.. Fogs, I was actually ready to watch it again last night after I got the BD… that’s like two days after I saw it on Saturday! I ended up watching the Special Features. Yes, I do love my Dalton 😀

      Glad you like Dredd, definitely NOT dreadful!

    1. Ahah, well thanks 😀 My taste is quite all over the place. I could go from Dredd to a Jane Austen to James Bond.

      The IT Crowd must’ve been written by people working in that department! I know I’ve heard that line being uttered by real IT support people here in my office, ahah. That’s cool you work in IT, Tim, you’re in London right?

  9. Good to see some more of our UK comedy translates well over in the US. One of your TV networks tried to remake it, or there were plans to. Aside from The Office, it just never works 🙂

    1. Hi Tyson, nice to see you pop by. I’ve always had a penchant for BBC stuff. I used to watch Vicars of Dibley as well, and I actually own a lot of the BBC dramas like North & South, The Jury, etc. Oh man, I hope they won’t remake it here, sheesh, US TV folks just have no creativity!!

        1. Y’know, I actually started watching Parks & Rec around the same time I did The IT Crowd, but I much prefer the later. I used to like a lot of US comedies like Frasier, Seinfeld, but not lately.

  10. Dredd is super violent and gory? Oh I have to see it now! I always complain about how vanilla these recent films are, anything to get Pg-13 rating. I read today that it’s doing well on DVD and they may even do a sequel.

    Thrilled that you like The IT Crowd – 1st and 2nd episode from season 2 are my favorites, but it’s all really funny. O’Dowd is so hilarious in this!

    1. Well if you like the hard R stuff then you certainly won’t be disappointed w/ Dredd, Sati. Vanilla is definitely what I’d use to describe it 🙂

      I’m looking forward to Season 2 of IT Crowd! I think I’ll do a marathon this weekend to catch up. It’s quite addictive!

    1. Hi T! Well it helps that it has my beloved Karl Urban in it even without his face visible 😉 I don’t mind seeing more of him in this role, but the level of violence is a bit too much for my feeble nerves, ahah.

  11. Yaaaiiii for the IT Crowd 🙂
    After this maybe you can check Black Books, not as funny as IT but still funny…and one of the cast is married to an Indonesian lady 😉

    And thank you for the link 🙂

  12. In most reviews I’ve read in the blogosphere and elsewhere regarding “Dredd”, there is rarely any mention of the campy action flick “Judge Dredd” starring Mr. Sylvester Stallone. Ok, so that was a pretty forgettable film, but I feel it serves a purpose in seeing just how much darker and gorier the “franchise” (if you can call it that) has gotten.
    Certainly a courageous choice by Karl Urban as his capacity to act is limited to the lower part of his face.

    PS. Of the few episodes I’ve had the chance to watch, the I.T. Crowd is certainly one of the little known wonders that people should watch. Very funny indeed. A prequel of sorts to The Big Bang Theory.

    1. I heard so much bad reviews of that Sly’s Dredd that I won’t bother renting it. You’re right that Urban is brave to do a role w/ out the use of his face, esp. since he’s not as well known yet.

      Glad to hear you love the IT Crowd too!

  13. Really looking forward to seeing Dredd. Great to hear it gets your approval, Ruth, especially since I know you’re not one for violence. 🙂

    I’ve also heard good things about The IT Crowd. Might have to give it a go, though I usually have a hard time getting into British humor.

    1. Dredd is worth seeing if you like action and movies based on graphic novels. Yeah it is very violent, but I like the direction style and visual flair of it, hence the high rating.

      Not into British humor? I suppose some of ’em are a bit too off the wall, but The IT Crowd should be pretty easy to get into. People who have had computer problems easily identify with them, ahah.

        1. Yep, that’s where I’m watching ’em now. Plus each episode is only 24 min long. If you like the original The Office, it’s got the same wacky humor. I love every single one of the regular cast, they’re just so hilarious! Hope you enjoy ’em Eric.

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