5 OF THE: BEST DANNY DYER FILMS

danny dyer title pic thing

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Danny Dyer is a man of many talents. Film actor, stage star, TV presenter and well known Cockney Geezer, Dyer has appeared in countless films and TV shows and has an acting career spanning more than two decades. He even came close to proving the existence of aliens. Well, sort of.

Despite the announcement that he is due to join the farcical crapfest that is EastEnders, Dyer’s big screen career continues, and his new film Vendetta is soon to be released. Even with a long career and work spanning multiple platforms, many people remain reluctant to accept Dyer as a serious actor and are quick to write him off as a one trick pony. That, my friends, stops today. As someone who on a whim one boring lonely day made a commitment to watch all of Mr Dyer’s films, I feel I am qualified to make a handy guide detailing the talented thespian’s best works for all you budding Dyer fanatics (you know, so you don’t have to sit through all the crap ones). And I am sure, just like me, you will become a Dyer convert, writing to him personally in order to receive a signed photograph of his face which you can proudly display on the wall of your student flat.

OUR DANNY

The Dyer fan’s most prized possession

In a bid to show that all actors have a mixture of good and bad films in their repertoire, here is a list of the five best Danny Dyer films. Just don’t watch Run For Your Wife. Seriously, don’t do it to yourself.

5.  Borstal Boy (2000)

BorstalBoyIn one of his earliest films and clearly prior to his typecast ‘hardman’ roles, Danny plays ‘Borstal Boy’ Charlie Milwall in a film based on the book of the same name. Set in a young offender’s institution in Ireland during WWII, the film explores themes of homosexuality and prejudice. While Dyer is not the main character here, he still has plenty of screen time. His character is likable, he has depth and he is unlike any other character Dyer has played. The film is not and it has a fairly watchable, deep plot; in other words, you’ll forget you are watching a Danny Dyer film. The acting is from the whole cast is impressive and it really is a film worth watching, if only just for the scene in which Dyer dons a dress and gives us his best Gwendolen from Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest. Surely, that alone is worth 90 minutes of your time.

IMDB RATING 6.6.

 

4.  Doghouse (2009)

One of many horror/thrillers in which Dyer has starred, Doghouse tells the story of a group of menDoghouse who go on a trip to the countryside only to find a town rife with female zombies. Whilst the film does mix gore with British, ‘blokey’ humour, it is clearly no Shaun of the Dead. Dyer plays Neil in a dim Cockney guy role that seems familiar yet serves the film well. Alongside Dyer are other big British names such as Stephen Graham, Noel Clarke and Lee Ingleby. The plot is fairly straightforward and nothing too complex but it is quite enjoyable. Far-fetched as it might be, there is good fun to be had watching this group of clumsy men fight off tarty zombies, resorting to using remote control cars to protect themselves from being eaten. Plenty of violence, gore and explosions ensure the film action packed, but it is all done with a touch of humour and the film clearly doesn’t take itself too seriously. Honestly quite entertaining, Doghouse is a pretty fun watch.

IMDB RATING 6.0

BEST DYER QUOTE   “Alright, calm down… You sound like a dolphin.”

3.  Freerunner (2011)

FreerunnerOkay, so this is Dyer in a film about, well … freerunning. By far the worst quality film on the list, Freerunner is the story of some young American guys who enjoy running up and jumping across tall buildings. The first half of the film is incredibly dull and features terrible acting from most of the cast. A typical horrible film about ‘hip’ teens dramatically changes format when evil slimeball Mr. Frank, played by Dyer, is introduced. In some form of Battle Royale twist, the freerunners are made to, quite literally, run for their lives; they are fitted with exploding electronic devices that will kill them if they do not win the race. Whilst usually playing the anti-hero, Dyer here plays an outright bad guy, but the character of Mr. Frank is so one-dimensionally evil that the role is pretty limited. He also doesn’t have that much screen time. Annoyingly I found myself enjoying the final half of the film and it made a change to watch Dyer in an unfamiliar role in an American setting. Then again, it is possible that I watched Freerunner in between two worse Dyer films (and believe me, there are worse than this, much much worse) and thus it surfaces as The Godfather of Danny Dyer films in my memory.

IMDB RATING 3.5

BEST DYER QUOTE   “Good afternoon, gentlemen. My name is Mr. Frank, and for the next sixty minutes you are my unwilling participants in a race for your life.”

 

2. Dead Man Running (2009)

Have you ever counted how many time you thought “I wish there was a film produced by footballersDeadManRunning Ashley Cole and Rio Ferdinand in which Danny Dyer and Tamer Hassan own a ski merchandise shop”? Well dream no longer, my friends, such a film does exist. It also stars 50 Cent and Omid Djalili. No, I’m not making this up. Dead Man Running details the story of Nick (Tamer Hassan) and his best friend Bing (Danny Dyer) who must go on a mission to raise £100,000 to pay off loanshark 50 Cent in order to stop his henchmen shooting Nick’s mother. The film is fast paced and enjoyable as the duo only have 24 hours to raise the money. Humour runs throughout the film and the Dyer-Hassan partnership works well in creating likeable, fun characters; the film has some genuinely funny moments. It isn’t high-brow entertainment, but it is certainly watchable.

IMDB RATING 5.8

BEST DYER QUOTE   There is a nice scene where Bing calls Nick a “Shrekhead”.  The best quote award actually goes to Tamer Hassan for: “Would it be an insult or more of an observation if I said you got a touch of the Nookie Bear looks about you?”

 

Spot the difference... Nookie Bear and Danny Dyer

Spot the difference… Nookie Bear and Danny Dyer

1. Severance (2006)

SeveranceOur number one is comedy horror in which Dyer plays Steve, a member of a group sent on a corporate teambuilding exercise in the remote forests of Hungary. Things rapidly take a turn for the worst and the group end up fighting for their lives as they are picked off one-by-one by sinister murderers. Dyer plays a loveable stoner, the dim guy turned hero; his character is strong and adds fun to the plot. Although at times pretty creepy, the film never loses its humour and is really quite enjoyable. Severance is full of strong characters and it has a great cast including Toby Stephens and Tim McInnerny. It works well as both a comedy and a horror film, and unlike many other films Dyer has been involved in, the overall production is quite impressive. Even from the opening and title sequences you can tell that it is a much higher quality film. The only Dyer film I have ever watched more than once and one of the few that I could genuinely recommend.

IMDB RATING 6.5

BEST DYER QUOTE   A draw between: “Shit, I’ve left Gordon’s foot on the coach… sorry mate” and “You found a pie?”

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A NIGHT IN WITH: TOTAL WAR: ROME II

If I was asked the question ‘Is there a game series over the last few years that you think could be trusted to dust off its credentials and step back into renowned what would it be?’

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I would give you a resounding answer of the Total War series developed by The Creative Assembly. I have always loved this series. I remember playing Medieval Total War when I was much younger and being sucked in; I would play for hours, dedicating huge amounts of time to developing little plans and schemes. Having played and loved each game in the series, upon the release of Napoleon Total War I felt the series took a bit of a dive. It was the little changes that made it more difficult for me to enjoy the new games, and, as a result, Napoleon Total War felt like it would have served better as downloadable content for Empire rather than being a game in its own right. In addition, the format change to a more linear campaign made the game feel unfamiliarly restrictive. After such disappointment, I hoped Total War: Rome II would bring back that spark, that joy de vive I miss so much. Has it succeeded? Well, let’s discuss the experience I had in the fifty hours I played.

Total War: Rome II begins with the heavy hint that for ultimate immersion you should play the prologue. In this you play as a generic Roman military leader who is given a few orders such as sieging Capua and invading the Sammites. The prologue really does show you a lot of the game from the first few mock battles and campaign tutorials; I found myself immediately engrossed as I watched my men fight for their lives and heard my officers shout for the glory of Rome.

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The introduction of new tools to the game really do help the player; firstly there are strategy maps which allow you to see a representation of your battle within a war room feel.  Another of the new tools is the action camera which, when clicked in battle, shows the fight from your point-of-view. This really lets you immerse yourself in the struggle whilst highlighting the graphical capabilities of this game. At one point in the game, my small force of Rome’s finest were defending against a force of 3000 hairy people with a strong dislike for my foreign policy. In another moment of peril, my leader’s unit was cut off and faced onslaught from hundreds of people who resembled Colin Farrell had he been stuck in a wind tunnel for eight days with nothing to drink but White Lightning. The action camera is a great feature of Total War: Rome II, and the epic battles are fun to watch. I can simply click the action camera, sit back and relax as I watch my men fighting together, back to back slashing, ducking and weaving; at one point I swear one of my men nobly pulled the leader out of the way of a falling blade. It was just beautiful to watch.

The game’s beauty is emphasised by the fact that the graphics are incredible. From the stern-faced soldiers to glimmering water, Total War: Rome II is stunning to look at. Long gone are the days of two identical men stabbing the air around them. Thankfully! Even the campaign map looks well-made and admirable. The sound however is a different story. Whilst sounds on the battlefield are well judged with dramatic music and superb sound effects, the campaign music is akin to having Greco Roman themed elevator music. After listening for even a short amount of time to its repetitive drones and squeals, I had to turn it off. Similarly annoying are the alerts and notifications sounds which repeatedly made the irritating noises. This was compounded by the fact there were not many options to change the music; the game only allows the volume to be either on or off.

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This is why I’m a little bit mixed up about the game as the things it does are great while the negative features make the game half unplayable. For one the AI is as mad as box of ferrets. In one instance I was five turns into a new campaign when sixteen inaccessible countries declared war on me. Things like this would happen a lot, making diplomacy impossible. I would agree with a small state to not attack them and offer trade and financial help in return for doing the same. They agreed for 5 turns before sending me an offer of an alliance. Two turns into that alliance an invasion fleet lands. This isn’t complex strategy that’s rolling dice on diplomacy. This is combined with limited development of cities. Instead of being able to add new buildings as before you are limited to a maximum six spaces and can upgrade those buildings. This would work for provinces but when Rome cannot have an armoury due to space, I take a step back and say hang on.

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Things like this make the game a real slog at times. While before I would gleefully role over turns planning and waiting for my move. I was now clicking waiting for something to happen so that I could react. Managing Rome and its empire became tiresome and dull. More and more I was sitting with a full army waiting to invade somewhere but couldn’t until I had cleaned my room, I mean set up my diplomatic relations with neighbouring states. I’m not a warlord but I don’t play total war games so I can discuss with nations the finer points of the wine trade.

This is why I hate to admit but I’m not the biggest fan of Total War: Rome II, oh I will play it again I’m sure but not in the same way I replayed the others. Instead of watching the hours drift away, you find yourself having the best time in the world one second and then spending 40 minutes hoping it will happen again.  Playing it is like searching for croutons in a bland salad, no matter how good the crouton is you still have to go back to munching leaves.

+ Battles are amazing to behold and be a part of.

+ It’s still a Total War game at heart.

+ New features like the action camera.

Too slow, even for a grand strategy game.

AI is less playing chess and more random action generator.

Over-saturated.

WHERE TO FIND CHEAP PC AND STEAM GAMES

PC gaming can be expensive, well all gaming can be expensive really. It can be hard to play the games you really want to play because of how costly it all is. What’s worse is that a lot of the time you will find yourself having to prioritise which games you want to play, and you end up missing out on some of the most anticipated, meaning that by the time you get the chance to play the game, the hype has died down and you’re not that interested anymore. So here’s a list of the best gaming deals to help you out.

Bundles

Bundles are a great place to get started. There are plenty of bundle sites around that offer you a lot of games in a pay-what-you-want system, and a cut of the money goes to charity so that everybody wins!

Humble Bundle and Humble Bundle’s Weekly Sale: This is the most well-known site and because of that it usually gets you the better deals. Big name games from the major developers will often show up here for a very enticing price.

Indie Royale: This I a great site for some of the lesser known games. The price of the whole bundle is usually around the £3 or $5 mark and for that price you get some diamonds in the rough to unearth – see Baby Bundle – Apple Jack. As a mark of the quality, the games we have seen come out of this site include Bit.Trip Runner and Serious Sam.

Indie Gala: Indie Gala is great for big bundles, and  you can get a lot of games for a very low price, again around the £3 or $5 mark. However, this comes with the downside of their being a lot of games you don’t really know about, that aren’t really that interesting. Previous games to come out of their bundles include Magicka, Cities in Motion, Trine, Defcon and Knights of Pen and Paper.

Bundle Stars: This site offers multiple bundles at the same time. There are lots of games on this site for almost nothing, but a lot of them are worth exactly that. Sometimes you might see a good game though and want to pick it up alongside a few unknowns for a knock down price. Previous games to come out of here include Jagged Alliance and the Tropico series.

Bundle in a Box: This site can also pull through for a decent game every so often, but it’s slim pickings. Previous bundles included Eversion and I Get This Call Everyday.

Indie Game Stand: This site is a bit different to the rest, it offers you a new indie game every 96 hours and it’s a pay-what-you-want system (they recommend $10, but it’s up to you). They do have a history of giving you some well-known games very early and for a good price. Some games you might have heard of to come out of this site include Bleed and Walking Mars.

Most of these sites also include some small bonuses if you beat the average. The range from wallpapers to guides and even soundtracks, so it can be well worth keeping your eye out for these, if that’s the type of thing you’re interested in. You can also sign up to the news letter for most of these sites to be informed of when there are deals on.

Are you interested in the weekly deals on Steam but find it hard to keep up to date with them all? This is what you need.

Totalbiscuit’s salebox: A weekly video rounding up all the games that are on sale alongside with some footage of the game and the opinion of a very experienced gamer on whether it’s worth the price.

Twitter

If you have it, following the right people can help you keep on top of all the daily deals floating around. Here’s a couple of accounts that you might want to check out:

Reddit

There’s a subreddit for everything, and finding game deals is certainly no exception:

/r/gamedeals

/r/SteamDeals

If you’re in the UK:

/r/GameDealsUK

If you’re still unsure:

/r/ShouldIBuyThisGame

Distributors

The last place to keep a look out on is the distributors. Different distributors will have sales at different times, so you can always find different games on sale.

GamersGate: Gamersgate has an option to search by games that are on sale and also to search by the current best-selling games. The latter option is a great way of finding the best deal as it finds the games everybody is buying. At the time of writing, the best-selling game on the site is Metro: Last Light, and it this isn’t surprising as the game is currently 50% off.

Green Man Gaming: A good site to keep an eye on; constant deals with the option of trading in old console games and even reviewing them for credit. Always check for voucher codes too, as this site they usually has some. Also check for their deal collections, at the moment a massive selection of horror deals are available plus 75% extra off from the voucher codes they supply.

Voucher Code

This is the sort of thing to look out for on GMG.

GameFly: Similar to Green Man Gaming, you can search by deals, and they also have bundles. They also display a coupon on their page to look out for, usually for 20% off all games. Something of note, Football Manager 2014 on this site is £24 (Written 20/10/2013) yet it is £40 everywhere else.

Good Old Games/GOG: This is another similar distributor, however you get no keys, all the games are all downloads. They display constant themed deals displayed. At time of writing point-and-click-a-thon, 60% off all point and click. They specialise in some lovely old games like Theme Hospital and Caesar III. You also get free bonus items like walk-throughs and wallpapers.

Savy Gamer

This site is a real juggernaut for finding you cheap deals on everything gaming. From telling you about which bundles are going on to finding you the best deals on the next generation of consoles. You get no opinions on the deals, just a list of them so you do need to research them yourself, but the site constantly updates with new deals and voucher codes.

Also of note

Get Games Go

Groupees: Another Bundle Site.

The Free Bundle: The Free Bundle is exactly what you’d expect it is. The games are free, so there is no harm in trying it you, but you may not have the most fun playing them. What’s the harm though?

Is There Any Deal?: There are a lot of deal comparison sites around, but in terms of gaming there aren’t many good ones. This one is constantly updated and will keep you up to date on anything you might want to buy.