Friday, August 23, 2019

Luce - Review

With enough nuance and mystery to keep even the most observant viewer in the dark, Luce may just be the most fascinating film of 2019. The world is full of problems, social issues that are subjects of endless debate, and this is a film that’s interested in exploring as many as it can.  It plays with these themes in a very compelling and thought provoking manner, and examines how far a person would go to confirm a narrative they already believe.

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Ready or Not - Review

Horror and comedy always wind up meeting from time to time, more so than any other two major genres at least. To be fair, they do share some similar characteristics. They rely almost entirely on timing and build up to effectively get a reaction from the audience, the premises or setups are often key to the entire affair working, and they remain pigeon-holed by people constantly trapped in what the genre should be rather than what it actually can do. That’s not even mentioning the complete lack of respect they receive from awards bodies either. The two genres are intertwined so often because they work so well together, and Ready or Not is the newest example of what can happen when horror and comedy are perfectly utilized.

Saturday, August 17, 2019

Good Boys - Review

The titular good boys of this raunchy, coming of age comedy are trying, with all their might, to be cool, bad, or popular, any of the three could fit at any given point. The film itself, unfortunately, falls into the same pattern, trying so hard to be like similar films that have come before that made this inappropriate sub-genre of comedy a financial opportunity for Hollywood. It matches some comedic beats that are wholly necessary when creating a 90-minute comedy, delivering on a lot of laughs, or at the very least light chuckles.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

The Farewell - Review

To love, laugh, and cry with family is nearly a universal experience. The familial dynamics that can be equal parts complex, infuriating, and wonderful all at the same are recognizable qualities that so many can relate to, regardless of the setting or language they’re portrayed in. In Lulu Wang’s beautifully realized, semi-autobiographical film The Farewell, the writer-director captures the realities of a family that remains family no matter the circumstances or distance in their lives, and it all comes together for one of the year’s best films.

Sunday, August 11, 2019

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark - Review

A horror anthology comprised of campfire style scary stories is ripe with potential if done properly. It can live in this interesting place where the atmosphere and creepy designs of each new ghastly creature can carry the load of a film tied together only be a loose narrative string. However, where the source material harms Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark is its inherent status as slightly too scary for the tweens, but far too tame for the horror aficionados all at the same time.

Friday, August 9, 2019

Dora and the Lost City of Gold - Review

In a world full of baffling news and choices made on multiple fronts in the movie business, a live action Dora the Explorer the movie that involves her as a teenager, forced to move to the city just might make a top ten list. However, the results are not nearly as bad as the premise might suggest on the surface. The filmmakers behind this odd project actually produced something that’s sort of….fun?

Thursday, August 1, 2019

Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw - Review

The Fast and the Furious franchise increasingly ups the ante from entry to entry, revving its metaphorical engine louder and louder in hopes of exciting an audience that yearns for more. Since a rather lowly beginning back in 2001 and the few lackluster entries that followed, the former street racing series has been a decent to great franchise, both critically and financially, due in large part to the introduction of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson in Fast Five. Eight years later, and a spat with the other franchise front man, and Johnson finally gets a spin-off film.