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Rollo Tomasi

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About me

I'm a thirty-something researcher from the English Lake District.

Occupation: Researcher

Single

About my collections

All my collections are a work in progress. I aim to catalogue every film I have ever seen, my CD, Vinyl 12", LP, 45 and mp3 collections and TV shows I enjoy most. I will endeavour to compile more lists and have an OCD like obsession with filling gaps where there are blank posters or pictures.

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Favorite Authors (10 items)
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Last updated 7 years, 8 months ago
Favorite Actors & Actresses (14 items)
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Favorite movies (25 items)
Movie list by Rollo Tomasi
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Recent reviews

All reviews - Movies (89) - TV Shows (1)

Titanic meets Almost Famous

Posted : 7 years, 8 months ago on 25 October 2009 02:33 (A review of The Boat That Rocked)

Loosely based on the Radio Caroline story this is a fun and nostalgic voyage into the murky waters of pirate radio. I enjoyed it much more than I expected to, not being a big fan of Richard Curtis' films before. Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Rhys Ifans provided great comedic value. I'll definitely watch the boat rock again.


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La Graine et le mulet (2007)

Posted : 7 years, 11 months ago on 18 July 2009 09:33 (A review of The Secret of the Grain)

Just as I thought French Culture was on the slide along comes this film to prove me wrong. France have found their Ken Loach with this socially charged slice of kitchen-sink.

French-Tunisian director Abdellatif Kechiche owes no apologies for the 150 minute running time. The interaction between the characters and the complexity of the relationships within the family unit make 'La Graine et le mulet' a truly immersive cinematic experience.



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Nobody Does It Better

Posted : 8 years, 7 months ago on 5 November 2008 08:59 (A review of Quantum of Solace)

I have always felt that Casino Royale was the best book in Ian Fleming's 007 series, it featured a Bond who was noticeably different to that in the films that followed, a more human Bond. Daniel Craig captures the essence of Fleming's Bond better than any, including Connery for my money.

In Quantum of Solace agent 007 goes renegade in a raw story of revenge to find out who is behind the funding of the terrorist activities which caused his lover Vesper to take her own life. I'm ecstatic that the producers decided to make Quantum Of Solace the first direct sequel of a Bond film by picking up the action only a matter of hours after Casino Royale ended. And hope the series continues on this route.

I found the action engaging but over-edited in some sections of the film. QoS runs at a breakneck pace and is the shortest Bond at only 106 minutes. The strength of character Daniel Craig brings to the film, and extended screen-time given to Judi Dench made me want to stay with them long after the credits.

I especially enjoyed watching Bond and Camille (Olga Kurylenko) and their contrasting motivations of revenge. Bond struggling between a sense honour and duty too his employers and a desire to avenge Vesper's death, and Camille who is 100% hell-bent on revenge on the man who slayed her family.

I viewed the film with six friends and many opinions were thrown into the ring following the films climax. Amongst them... “The villains were weak”. This I can agree with. Environmentalist Dominic Greene (Mathieu Almaric) is less fearsome than the grim reality of his intended plans, but the Bond villains of old no longer have a place in this franchise. Mike Myers and Dr Evil put pay to that. 007's main enemy here is himself and his struggle to control his own actions.

“What happened to all the gadgetry?”. I won't deny that I would like to see more gadgetry. The producers seem to be more interested in product placement, on convincing you to buy the latest Sony Ericsson cellphone, than keeping the fanatics updated with the latest in the modern day spy's toolbox.

“I miss the cheesy one-liners of the Bond of old”. Daniel Craig is not Roger Moore, thank god. This is not the seventies or eighties. Bond is now a man of the naughties, there is no room for cheese in his fridge. Read Casino Royale and get back to me.

Quantum of Solace confirmed to me that 'Nobody Does It Better' than Daniel Craig. Secure a director for the next film who is equally talented and we'll have a winning combination.


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Somers Town

Posted : 8 years, 8 months ago on 28 October 2008 09:54 (A review of Somers Town)

Somers Town; the neighbourhood of London squeezed between the Euston, St. Pancras, and Kings Cross railway termini is the unlikely location and title of Brit director Shane Meadow's latest effort. I say 'unlikely' as it marks the first time Meadows has shot on location outside of his native East Midlands. It also marks his first film since the BAFTA winning 'This Is England'.

Sixteen year old runaway Tomo (Thomas Turgoose) arrives in London off the train from Nottingham to a beating from a trio of cockney kids which results in the loss of his bag and wallet.

Whilst contemplating his next move Tomo meets Polish immigrant Marek (Piotr Jagiello). The pair form a mutual appreciation society for the lovely Maria (Elisa Lasowski) a French girl who works at the local cafe and they turn their attention to earning some money to spend on wooing her, and finding some clothes and a roof for the potless homeless Tomo.

Granted this is not much of a plot but strong characterisation and Meadows wicked sense of humour made me wish I could hang with Marek and Tomo long after the films 70 minutes running time. The shy and withdrawn immigrant 'Marek' is the ying to the bare-faced cheekiness of Tomo's yang and together they make one of the more engrossing duos I've witnessed in recent years. Thomas Turgoose more than proves the praise he earned from his debut in This Is England was no fluke. He really is staking his claim as the most impressive British actor of his generation.

Almost completely shot in grainy black and white 8mm film, Somers Town has a look and feel that harkens back to the 1960's social-realism of Tony Richardson and Lindsay Anderson, and the more recent kitchen-sink brand of drama that has made the likes of Mike Leigh and Ken Loach so popular. The style and technique of Shane's craft is unashamedly cheap yet still manages to elevate the borough of Somers Town itself to a leading role. It's less of a departure from his East Midlands base than I initially expected. The fact that a film this effective can be shot in just ten days is inspiring.

Meadows has built a career on portraying the working classes with good humour whilst maintaining a certain grit and determination that comes with a life spent on Britain's council estates and back-streets. This Is England depicted an England in dissaray with racial harmony, but with this outing the coin is flipped showing a multi-cultural society where people of all nationalities and backgrounds can live side-by-side, and truly bond as one.

Already sitting pretty amongst my favourite films of the year the only thing that could possibly demote it is the believability of the relationship between the two boys and their muse, Maria.

My guess is a release overseas will most likely be limited to very few theatres, if you get the chance to see this film, grab it. It's only an hour-ten of your life, that's 70 minutes you won't regret. At least half of that you'll spend laughing out loud. Who doesn't like laughing? Anyone?


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I heart Bruges

Posted : 8 years, 9 months ago on 18 September 2008 04:29 (A review of In Bruges)

This film is both funny and deep, a rare occurrence in today's cinematic climate. Martin Mcdonagh on his debut makes a great case for more playwrights stepping into film. He and the cast handle the dark themes of guilt and atonement with as much ease as the films many comedic moments. There are a few belly laughs to be had from Colin Farrell's dialogue alone. In Bruges is guaranteed to offend some people, you may be one of those people but the film doesn't care. It just keeps on entertaining until the credits roll. Probably my favourite of this year so far.


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When boxing was king!

Posted : 8 years, 9 months ago on 18 September 2008 11:22 (A review of When We Were Kings)

I think Spike Lee sums things up during the film when he states ‘These kids today are missing a whole lot if they don’t know about the legacy of Muhammad Ali. No matter what era you live in, you see very few true heroes’. Here Ali charms a whole African Nation with his honesty and charisma. There is no boxer today that even comes close to him inside or outside of the ring. You don't have to love boxing to enjoy this film, it's so much more than that, it's also passionate about politics, personality, history, religion. If you do love boxing... then there's no greater fight. Take a journey back in time with two true legends of the sport you won't be disappointed.


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Light hearted fun

Posted : 8 years, 9 months ago on 12 September 2008 11:46 (A review of Son of Rambow)

Son of Rambow captures the heart and soul of the eighties almost perfectly. Although there's things that feel foreign to the decade, Brethren for one. Can't say I ever met such people.

I'd forgotten how magical it was to imagine as a child, to create imaginary worlds. Thanks to Carter and Will I got to relive my youth a little. Looking to escape, looking for a light-hearted funny film that doesn't take itself too seriously? Son of Rambow may just be the film you need.



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an absorbing film noir

Posted : 8 years, 9 months ago on 3 September 2008 09:46 (A review of Where the Sidewalk Ends)

Dana Andrews is great as the tortured anti-hero cop Dixon. His inner struggle to conserve the truth of his actions is so absorbing as the plot twists and turns. I didn't want the sidewalk to end.

Watch Laura and this in a double bill and you'll witness a brilliant trio at work. Otto Preminger + Dana Andrews + Gene Tierney = Gold!

Also of note, Karl Malden makes an early appearance in this film.


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Dark, haunting and energetic

Posted : 8 years, 10 months ago on 8 August 2008 11:19 (A review of The Dark Knight)

Dark, haunting and energetic but not as deep as the hype would like you to believe. A great comic book adaptation, good action movie and half-decent crime thriller. Oldman is still the best actor on show, never does Gordon feel like Oldman playing Gordon. I can't say that about the rest of the cast, but I can see why the public are hyped for the leading roles.


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Why Michael?

Posted : 8 years, 10 months ago on 7 August 2008 05:25 (A review of The Actors)

A superficial formulaic comedy of errors. The main error being Caine and Gambons for choosing to collect a paycheck over a quality production. I like Dylan Moran in the brilliant Black Books, but maybe he should stick to the small screen if this is the sum of his efforts.


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