Tag Archives: Movie Reviews

Dunkirk Is Shattering!

Dunkirk – Tommy (Fionn Whitehead) – Photo by Melinda Sue Gordon/Courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

Is it possible for a war movie top give you PTSD?

Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk, in IMAX, is a harrowing, edge of your seat thriller that practically drags you into the World War II evacuation of over 300,000 soldiers from the beach at Dunkirk.

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The Big Sick: The Best Romantic Comedy of the Decade!

The Big Sick may be the latest entry in the Judd Apatow lifts gifted comics to the next level sweepstakes, but it is very much not a Judd Apatow film.

Written by Kumail Nanjiani and his wife, Emily Gordon, The Big Sick is the mostly true story of how the couple met, fell in love, broke up and would probably never have seen each other again if she hadn’t gotten so sick she needed to be placed in a medical coma.

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Spider-Man: Homecoming – The Superhero Movie John Hughes Never Made!

Spider-Man: Homecoming – Spider-Man scales the Washington Monument – Photo courtesy of Columbia Pictures.

Throughout its development and shoot, practically everyone on the Marvel Studios team would talk about how Spider-Man: Homecoming would a John Hughes-styled high school movie with the bonus of superheroics.

Everyone involved somehow managed to make that thought reality. Spider-Man: Homecoming is a unique mix of John Hughes and Marvel.

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Spider-Man: Homecoming Review! It Bugs Me!

My two favorite super hero films remain X-Men 2, Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 2 and The Avengers. For me those three films couldn’t be more different and represent the pinnacle of the Super-Hero genre. I’m not one of those blind “Marvel can do no wrong” fan girls. Spider-Man: Homecoming isn’t a perfect film, but it’s damn fun if not slightly disappointing. You can skip all this great prose and go directly to my incoherent video review at the end of the review!

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Despicable Me 3 – Reliable Fun!

(L to R) Gru (STEVE CARELL) faces off against Balthazar Bratt (TREY PARKER) in “Despicable Me 3.”

After reinventing itself for Despicable Me 2, with Gru becoming a good guy and finding love, DM3 introduces soap and superhero trope the twin brother and adds a villain who styles himself after the ‘80s kids show he starred in before adolescence got it cancelled.

The Minions, of course, are back in the way they are best used – short, sweet, frequently inspired scenes that play counterpoint to the main story.

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Baby Driver’s Got The Beat!

Baby (ANSEL ELGORT, front right), Bats (JAMIE FOXX, front left), JD (LANNY JOON, back right), Eddie (FLEA BALZARY, back left) wait in the car in TriStar Pictures’ BABY DRIVER.

I can imagine the pitch for Baby Driver, ‘It’s a coming of age story about this young guy who’s the best getaway car driver ever – because he has tinnitus and listens to music to drown it out. When he falls in love with a diner waitress, he wants out.’

When you strip Baby Driver down to its most basic, that’s the essence of it. That’s what it comes down to – and it works beautifully.

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Transformers: The Last Knight Is Not a Good Night!

Mark Wahlberg plays Cade Yeager in TRANSFORMERS: THE LAST KNIGHT, from Paramount Pictures.

Transformers: The Last Night is either action or exposition and on so many fronts it has trouble keeping itself straight – let alone letting the audience do so.

I’m going to be completely upfront here: my inner 12-year old was bored; my outer 65-year couldn’t doze off because the movie was too loud, and I finished my big drink with more than half-an-hour left before the closing credits (and a rather unintriguing tag) began to roll.

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Rough Night Almost Overcomes Rough Start!

(L to R) Scarlett Johansson, Jillian Bell, Ilana Glazer, Zoe Kravitz in Columbia Pictures’ ROUGH NIGHT.

Rough Night is an R-rated comedy that starts slowly and gradually picks up speed until the last thirty minutes finally become the laugh riot the trailers suggested it would be.

It’s not quite enough to endorse the movie, but it definitely comes close.

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The Mummy Is the Best Part of The Mummy!

SOFIA BOUTELLA as Ahmanet – “The Mummy.” Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures.

The Mummy – the first entry in what Universal Pictures is calling Dark Universe – gives the new universe a pretty shaky start.

Despite Alex Kurtzman showing some skill at juggling character and plot arcs, and keeping things moving forward at a good pace, he can’t overcome the clunky script (six writers involved at story and script levels), lack of genuinely witty banter and a horrendous misuse of Tom Cruise.

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Wonder Woman Is a Wonder? Too Easy, But Accurate!

GAL GADOT as Wonder Woman – Photo by Clay Enos/ TM & (c) DC Comics/Courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures. 

How long has it been since we’ve seen a brilliant, completely unironic superhero movie? 2011’s Captain America: First Avenger. Before that? Probably Richard Donner’s Superman: The Movie (1978)/Richard Lester & Donner’s Superman II (1980).

To that remarkable (and remarkably short) list we can add Patty Jenkins’ Wonder Woman.

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Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales – Bits of It Are Entertaining!

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales – Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) and the Black Pearl in a Bottle – Photo courtesy of Walt Disney Studios.

The opening sequence of Dead Men Tell No Tales finds young Henry (Lewis McGowan) rowing out to sea, tying a bag of rocks to his leg and plunging into the sea – where he lands on the deck of the sunken Flying Dutchman and we learn that he is the son of Will Turner (Orlando Bloom).

From there we shift to Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) and his crew robbing a bank – an effort that takes a hilarious path.

It’s a true pity that the rest of the movie couldn’t have been as inventive.

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