films seen
average score
Australia - 76 years old
Alive and kicking
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The inoffensive

The Bank Job

by Roger Donaldson
2008 / 111m - UK
Crime, Thriller
The Bank Job poster

The World's Fastest Indian

by Roger Donaldson
2005 / 127m - New Zealand
The World's Fastest Indian poster

Worthy but flawed

The Recruit

by Roger Donaldson
2003 / 115m - USA
Action, Thriller
The Recruit poster

Dante's Peak

by Roger Donaldson
1997 / 108m - USA
Adventure, Thriller
Dante's Peak poster

A solid, but predictable disaster flick. Dante's Peak does little to deviate from the template, instead it hopes that the appeal of Brosnan and some first-rate CG effects are enough to keep audiences glued to the screen. And for the most part that bet paid off, as Dante's Peak turned out to be an enjoyable flick.

As with most of these disaster films, I like the setup better than the actual disaster. Donaldson does a good job with that. He doesn't drag things out, still he takes time to create a feeling of unease. The second half is entirely dedicated to the eruption, which was a little less impressive than I remembered.

The best thing about this film is that it stayed below the 110-minute mark. The pacing is slick, the genre payoffs are decent and even though it gets a bit too cheesy, the film never stays too long at one single point for it to become a problem. Not exactly great cinema, but a pleasant film nonetheless.


by Roger Donaldson
1988 / 104m - USA
Cocktail poster

Simple 80s romance. I once saw it a long, long time ago, well before I started keeping track of films. All I remembered was Cruise throwing bottles in the air and The Beach Boys' Kokomo. That wasn't by accident it seems, as these are by far the most remarkable things this film has to offer.

Cruise wants to make it big after coming back from the army, but his part-time job as a bartender quickly takes over his life. He's quite a talent and before he knows it bartending becomes his ultimate dream, introducing him to his best friend to be, his wife to be and ultimately a happier life.

Cruise is the main attraction and he does his thing quite well here. The plot is middling, Elisabeth Shue fails to sparkle, the drama is predictable and the soundtrack is pretty bland too. But there's an upbeat atmosphere that makes this a pretty each watch. Just simple fun, don't expect too much and it ends up pretty decent filler.

Dubious filler

The November Man

by Roger Donaldson
2014 / 108m - USA
Crime, Thriller
The November Man poster

Plain forgettable


by Roger Donaldson
1995 / 108m - USA
Action, Horror
Species poster

Pointless rewatch. This is one of those films I watched well before I began tracking my ratings. The sole reason to watch this film was Giger's involvement in the creature design, but don't expect to find the next Alien. Species is a very bland mix of action and horror that does no justice to the designs of Giger.

What surprised me the most was the cast. I remembered Species as a full-blown (read cheap) B-flick, but the cast is actually pretty decent, hosting quite a few respectable names. Not that the performances are outstanding, but at the very least it indicates this wasn't made to be random shelf filler, even though the actual quality may suggest something different.

The police chase is bland, the 90s atmosphere is kitsch, the effects are atrocious and Henstridge clearly wasn't cast for of her acting talent. What could've been a fun, juicy B-flick turned out to be an uninspired, run-of-the-mill genre flick. A waste of potential, it's beyond how a film like this managed to get two more sequels.

Big nopes

The Getaway

by Roger Donaldson
1994 / 115m - USA
Action, Crime
The Getaway poster