The MovieViews 500 – May Summary

The MovieMuse team has set ourselves the challenge of watching 500 different films between us in 2017. Every new film we watch will be rated and given a short review as part of our MovieViews database. It may almost be the end of June, but we’ve finally got our act together after holidays and other delays so here’s how we got on in May.


Despite those holidays, May was actually our second-best showing in terms of films watched since we started our challenge, and as we approach the half-way point we’re still on target, just about! Simon finally got back on the film-watching horse, although he still logged the lowest number of films watched of the team, while Gordon also returned to form, accounting for over half of the total watched. The quality of films watched also improved compared to last month, with the average score given up by 0.5, thanks in part to us watching a number of classics.


Below are the stats for the month, including each team members’ best and worst picks from the films they watched for the first time. You can also scroll down to see the reviews written by each team member for every film watched in May.


Overall Stats

Total Films Watched84454731522339
Unique Films Watched78363927421832
New Reviews Added72374025382030
Average Rating Given3.
Challenge Completion15.6%22.8%30.6%36.0%44.4%48.0%54.4%

Team Member Stats for May

Total Films Watched26187
Unique Films Watched24133
New Reviews Added25102
Average Rating Given2.943.53.57
Best Film of the MonthThe Lego Batman MovieThe FounderAvengers: Age of Ultron
Worst Film of the MonthXXREC 2Last Passenger

Gordon’s Reviews

12 Years a Slave 2013 Brilliantly told, well shot, great acting and a really important story that we should always be reminded of. 8
Alien: Covenant 2017 Shockingly predictable and further proof that the franchise has nothing left to say. BUT, Covenant is still an enjoyable and entertaining couple of hours that is worthy of your time. 6
Beauty and the Beast 2017 An utterly pointless remake that does nothing in live action that the original didn't do in animation. Also has some of the worst blockbuster CGI of recent times. 5
Brick 2005 A modern day teen noir sounds awful, but the direction and score pull it off (mostly). JGL is great in the lead role. 7
Catfight 2016 Its USP is the vicious and gratuitous catfights between the female leads, but I am not sure a brutal fight between a pregnant woman and a grieving woman, can ever be funny. No matter how much whimsical music you accompany it with. 5
City of Tiny Lights 2016 Riz Ahmed makes a really interesting and intiguing PI, so it is most disappointing that he is put into such a stereotypical role (terrorism and cricket anyone?). One of the least thrilling thrillers in a long while. 4
Going in Style 2017 A gentle and jolly comedy that but for the big name cast would be no more than a sunday afternoon cable film. 6
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 2017 Disappointingly little happens and some of the jokes seemed forced, but there is plenty of action and laughs along the way. 6
John Wick: Chapter 2 2017 Relentless and brutal action, but the film is a little too wrapped up in its own flash production that it fails to fully develop its excellent premise, leaving too much glitz where there should be grit. 7
King Kong 1933 For a film over 80 years old it still stands up as one of the greatest monster movies. The special effects are matched by the wonderful story that must have truly felt like the eighth wonder all those years ago. 8
Last Passenger 2013 A nice low budget thriller that only lets itself down by the dodgy score and lacklustre ending. 6
Mindhorn 2016 A great opening half hour runs out of steam leaving Mindhorn as an amusing curiosity rather than the British comedy classic that some critics would have you believe. 5
North by Northwest 1959 A film screaming out for a modern remake, the leads are great and the scripting fun, but lacking in action (but no more than most 1950s films). 7
Persepolis 2007 An interesting but bleak life story and good animation can't save the film from being a little long and dull. 5
T2: Trainspotting 2017 Danny Boyle's ego gets in the way of a reasonably good visit to see some lost friends. Certainly not groundbreaking in the way the original was, but satisfying all the same. 7
The Belko Experiment 2016 A poor mans Battle Royale set in a high rise office block. Fun, but utterly pointless. 5
The Comedian 2016 A great cast and some fine performances from De Niro and Leslie Mann turn a slightly cliched tale into a funny and endearing comedy. 7
The End of the Tour 2015 Great performances from Segal and Eisenberg, but never really becomes more than an interesting conversation. 6
The Fitzroy 2017 A Kickstarter funded traditional British farce set in a dystpoian 1950s Margate. Some of the acting is suspect and the script would better suit the theatre, but the sets and production values are high and the comedy just about hits the mark. 6
The Fugitive 1993 The filmmaking maybe doesn't hold up to modern standards and most of the twists are pretty well signposted, but the thrills are there and Ford/Jones make a good set of adversaries. 7
The Goob 2014 So little happens in the film that I wonder how the writer decided it was finished. Nicely shot and some reasonable acting, but there is nothing to recommend beyond that. 4
The Guardians 2017 Every bit of the film swings from laughable to passable. The acting, the effects, the story and the humour. Not quite the Russian Avengers. Infact, not even close. 5
The LEGO Batman Movie 2017 It is the nods to other cinematic superheroes that draw the most laughs and whilst the second half struggles to keep up the jokes per minute pace of the first to concentrate on the action, LEGO Batman is a much more complete offering than The LEGO Movie. 8
Their Finest 2016 A very 'nice' period romance that will offend no-one with its perfectly pleasant demeanour. Arterton as always is delightful and all the more endearing for her cutesy welsh accent. 7
Tracktown 2016 A film that spends so much time trying to be nice that it doesn't realise the drama that we are hoping will unfold. 4



Mat‘s Reviews

A Fish Called Wanda 1988 A fairly run of the mill heist caper that is elevated by the comedic performances of its cast, with the outrageous, insane turn by Kevin Kline the standout. 7
Big Game 2014 Samuel L. Jackson is entertaining in an atypical role, but he's totally upstaged by his teenage co-star Onni Tommila in this action-adventure with a fun, late 80's feel. 7
Doctor Strange 2016 Cumberbatch is engaging and entertaining, and the film has plenty of humour and excitement, but at no point did I really care what was going on. It's little more than a feeder to the next Avengers movie. 6
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 2017 Visually spectacular and frequently hilarious, with much of this edition's humour coming from Dave Bautista's Drax. Much like the first one, the story is somewhat lacking but it's still a wildly entertaining popcorn movie. 7
Last Passenger 2013 A well-made low budget British thriller that maintains tension throughout, has generally decent acting performances from its small cast and even manages a few exciting action scenes. 7
Men In Black 1997 It's little more than Lethal Weapon crossed with Ghostbusters, but the perfomances of Will Smith and especially Tommy Lee Jones are excellent and the CG effects have held up pretty well. 8
Pulp Fiction 1994 Clever, convoluted, witty and undeniably cool, with a great soundtrack and countless memorable and quotable scenes, this remains Quentin Tarantino's finest work over 20 years on. 10
REC 2 2009 This sequel abandons the suspense and jump scares of its predecessor in favour of all-out chaos, an incomprehensible religion-oriented plot and a very predictable twist at the end. Disappointing. 4
Reign of Fire 2002 The concept of a Dragon-inhabited post apocalyptic world is certainly original, and there are undoubtedly some good moments, but overall this film never really reaches the exciting heights that it promises. 6
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story 2016 With expectations lowered, I was far less disappointed second time around, but the lack of engaging characters and any kind of surprise hasn’t changed my overall opinion. 6
Rubber 2010 An utterly ridiculous concept for a film, and yet this tale of a sentient tyre on a murderous rampage is oddly engaging. David Lynch would be proud of the level of weirdness attained by this 'movie within a movie'. 6
Source Code 2011 An incredibly clever, original and thrilling film with a superb, emotion-filled lead performance from Jake Gyllenhaal. It would be almost perfect were it not for the ridiculous last few minutes. 8
Space Station 76 2014 Captures its intended 70's retro-futuristic vibe well, and has some very funny scenes, but runs out of steam due to the lack of an interesting story and an unexpectedly bleak ending. 5
Star Wars: A New Hope 1977 Still a joy to watch on its 40th birthday! 10
The Bourne Identity 2002 Matt Damon seemed an odd choice for the role of Jason Bourne, but exceeds expectations in a thrilling movie that redefined the espionage thriller genre and spawned two enjoyable sequels. 8
The Breakfast Club 1985 Over 30 years on, it is showing it's age a little and is incredibly idealistic, but there's no denying the quality of the characters and their interaction with one another. One of the best high school comedies of all time. 8
The Founder 2016 A fascinating story about the history of the biggest fast food chain in the world, with a decent performance by Keaton as the despicable Ray Kroc. Unfortunately the attempt to incorporate aspects of Kroc's personal life just detract from the core story. 7
The Good Dinosaur 2015 The gorgeous natural environments make this Pixar's best-looking film to date, and the two main characters are great, but the simplistic plot and odd collection of supporting characters let the film down somewhat. 6



Simon’s Reviews

Avengers: Age Of Ultron 2015 A good Superhero action film. Ultron as the antagonist is an interesting concept and the story is quite gripping and as with many movies of this type, the action is fast and furious if a little samey. Still an enjoyable blast. 7
Close Encounters of the Third Kind 1977 A really intriguing film, good effects for the time and the slow build up to the final encounter is atmospheric and encapsulating. I heartily recommend this Spielberg classic. 8
Last Passenger 2013 This is a strange concept for a film to me, but one which is quite intriguing, and over zealous acting aside it holds up reasonably well. I was not overly impressed but on reflection it was more complex and enjoyable than I gave it credit for. 5
Lethal Weapon 1987 A classic buddy cop action flick, Mel Gibson and Danny Glover are both great as the the two cops thrown together to take down the bad guys, any way they can. Great action and characters make this a frenzied watch from start to finish. 8
Lethal Weapon 2 1989 The explosive follow up to Lethal Weapon, just as fast and furious and just as much fun to watch. Both Mel Gibson and Danny Glover reprise their roles as the 2 cop buddies, and again the action and excitement is layed on thick in this great sequel. 8
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story 2016 A really great addition to the Star Wars film universe, great effects and story and well acted and scripted. Well worth a few hours of your time. 8
The Last Starfighter 1984 A slice of 80s nostalgia and I find it a likeable, if somewhat cheesy experience. It is fun though, and the effects if somewhat limited add to the charm of the film. Take it as 80s cheese and you'll enjoy it. 6


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