Rocketman (2019)

Rocketman
Director: Dexter Fletcher
Writer: Lee Hall
Cast: Taron Egerton, Jamie Bell, Richard Madden, Bryce Dallas Howard, Gemma Jones, Steven Mackintosh, Tom Bennett, Matthew Illesley, Kit Connor, Tate Donovan, Ophelia Lovibond, Harriet Walter, Stephen Graham
Seen on: 11.6.2019

Content Note: (critical treatment of) homomisia

Plot:
Elton John (Taron Egerton) has reached a low point. Now he is in a rehab facility, trying to get better. Part of that is trying to piece together how he got to where he is now. So he reflects on his childhood as Reggie with his parents (Bryce Dallas Howard, Steven Mackintosh) and his grandmother (Gemma Jones), how he discovered music for himself and with his cooperation with Bernie (Jamie Bell), and how he meets producer John (Richard Madden). Especially his complicated relationship with John that makes Elton come to grips with his homosexuality, but also causes him a lot of pain.

Rocketman is not the best film you will ever see, but it is a really good one, with a great lead and awesome music.

The film poster showing Elton John (Taron Egerton) in a feather costume and huge glasses on stage in a stadium, playing the piano in full rock mode.
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Robin Hood (2018)

Robin Hood
Director: Otto Bathurst
Writer: Ben Chandler, David James Kelly
Cast: Taron Egerton, Jamie Foxx, Ben Mendelsohn, Eve Hewson, Jamie Dornan, Tim Minchin, Paul Anderson, F. Murray Abraham, Ian Peck, Cornelius Booth
Seen on: 20.1.2019
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Content Note: racism

Plot:
Robin (Taron Egerton) is a lord with good money. He’s also in love with Marian (Eve Hewson), a commoner. His life would have been fine if he hadn’t been drafted to fight in the crusades. Once there, he is not willing to accept his commanding officer Guy of Gisborne’s (Paul Anderson) cruelty, so he gets sent home again. Back home Robin realizes that the Sheriff of Nottingham (Ben Mendelsohn) had him declared dead, seized his property and is ruling the city with an iron fist. But there is also resistance brewing, led by Will (Jamie Dornan) – and Marian who is with Will now. Just when Robin is about to call it a day and disappear, Yahya (Jamie Foxx) shows up, offering to train Robin to take the fight to the Sheriff.

Robin Hood looks like it has the potential to be delightful trash. Unfortunately it takes itself way, way too seriously and it’s just not good enough to fit the bill of a good film, becoming a rather dreary film instead.

The film posters showing the main characters surrounded by arrows.
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Kingsman: The Golden Circle (2017)

Kingsman: The Golden Circle
Director: Matthew Vaughn
Writer: Jane Goldman, Matthew Vaughn
Based on: Mark Millar’s and Dave Gibbons’ comic
Sequel to: Kingsman: The Secret Service
Cast: Taron EgertonMark StrongHanna AlströmJulianne MooreColin FirthMichael GambonChanning TatumHalle BerryElton JohnJeff BridgesPedro PascalBruce Greenwood 
Seen on: 20.9.2017
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Plot:
Eggsy (Taron Egerton) has very much settled into being a Kingsman agent, and into dating Swedish Princess Tilde (Hanna Alström). But just when everything seems to calm down, a devastating attack that strikes at the very heart of the Kingsman HQ leaves Eggsy and Merlin (Mark Strong) the only survivors of the agency. When they follow emergency procedure, they discover that there is another agency in the USA: Statesman. They fly there to look for help in tracking down their attacker.

I very much enjoyed the first Kingsman film and was very much looking forward to this sequel, but unfortunately I was disappointed with it, despite some pretty good ideas.

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Eddie the Eagle (2016)

Eddie the Eagle
Director: Dexter Fletcher
Writer: Sean Macaulay, Simon Kelton
Based on: Eddie Edwards‘ life
Cast: Taron Egerton, Hugh Jackman, Jo Hartley, Keith Allen, Iris Berben, Jim Broadbent, Christopher Walken, Edvin Endre
Seen on: 6.4.2016

Plot:
Eddie (Taron Egerton) has always had one dream: he will be an athlete. And not just any kind of athelte, an Olympic athlete competing for the UK. No matter the sport and no matter that he is perpetually hurting himself in his attempts. When he realizes that there is no British ski jumping team, he sees his chance and he grabs it. Making his way to Germany to train with absolutely no support apart from his mother’s (Jo Hartley) unflinching belief in him, he meets Bronson Peary (Hugh Jackman): Bronson came close to be one of the greats in his sport, but now he makes his money driving the snow groomer. Eddie does everything he can to convince Peary to train with him so that he can take his shot.

Eddie the Eagle is a fun, entertaining film. It’s not a big cinematic revelation, but it’s a very nice watch with a good story and two engaging leads.

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Legend (2015)

Legend
Director: Brian Helgeland
Writer: Brian Helgeland
Based on: John Pearson‘s book The Profession of Violence: The Rise and Fall of the Kray Twins
Cast: Tom Hardy, Christopher Eccleston, Emily BrowningTaron Egerton, Colin Morgan, David Thewlis, Chazz Palminteri, Duffy, Paul Bettany, Paul Anderson
Seen on: 21.1.2016

Plot:
Reggie (Tom Hardy) and Ronnie (Tom Hardy) Kray are notorious, at least in the East End of London. Officially night club owners, their main business isn’t so legal which brings them under the scrutiny of police officer Nipper Read (Christopher Eccleston) who has yet to find something big that sticks. When Reggie has to go to prison for a while,  Ronnie – who is not exactly mentally healthy – starts to get out of hand.

Legend tells a good story with a fantastic cast in a pretty clunky way. Tom Hardy is amazing though in both roles, so if all else fails, there is that.

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Kingsman: The Secret Service (2014)

Kingsman: The Secret Service
Director: Matthew Vaughn
Writer: Jane Goldman, Matthew Vaughn
Based on: Mark Millar’s and Dave Gibbons’ comic
Cast: Colin FirthTaron Egerton, Mark StrongSophie Cookson, Samuel L. Jackson, Sofia Boutella, Hanna Alström, Jack Davenport, Mark Hamill, Michael Caine
Seen on: 20.03.2015

Plot:
Eggsy (Taron Egerton) is a specialist for getting in trouble. When he’s arrested and facing actual jail time, he calls a number on his dead father’s medal that Eggsy got from a co-worker of his father, with the instruction to call if he ever needed help. A short while later Eggsy is released and introduced to Harry Hart (Colin Firth). It turns out that Eggsy’s father belonged to a privately run spy organization – the Kingsman and Hart still works there. The Kingsmen have taken some serious hits recently and are recruiting. Hart sees potential in Eggsy and so Eggsy finds himself in an entirely unknown world a short while later – not only the spy world, but also the mostly snooty upper class.

Kingsman was a fun film that proves not only Vaughn’s talent for directing action movies with awesome soundtracks, but also that the spy genre can be made fun of very easily and very lovingly. It is not completely issue-free though, even if the good parts outweigh the issues.

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