“Magnificent Seven” is a stick of dynamite blast half the time, but the other half of the time it’s like watching a tumbleweed blow unenthusiastically in the wind.
The Blair Witch has entered the digital age. It’s no longer trapped in the Circuit City video camera age with a $22,000 budget. It now has drones, Bluetooth headset cameras, and $5 million to play with. And maybe that’s why it has inherently lost a lot of its horror charm and bite.
Centuries from now, should movies still be being made, film historians will still be talking about Tom Hanks and Clint Eastwood…if you want to introduce your little one to a true hero, introduce them to “Sully.”
Full of inconsistent time jumps and heavy handed foreshadowing, “The Light Between Oceans” starts off strong but peters out by the time the film ends…about 40 minutes too late.
Whenever the movie gets close to developing a theme or message, it reverts back to finding meaning behind violence like a Kindergartener throwing a temper tantrum, frustrated that it couldn’t find a way to expel upon its interesting premise. If this is the final movie of the summer, the summer certainly went out on an uncreative whimper.
Based on a true story, the action keeps the film flowing smoothly without becoming preachy. As one of the last films of the summer season, “War Dogs” is definitely one to watch before you end your summer vacation.
“Kubo” will surely be keeping Disney and Pixar on the edge of their seat come award season. Laika Studios is proving to be a worthy adversary and showing that stop-motion can be just as colorfully lively, emotionally heartbreaking and creatively inspiring, than a lost fish in the sea or what your pets do while you’re at work.
“Hell or High Water” captures the rustic West, the deep-seeded “Don’t Mess with Texas” attitude of its characters and the unflinching misery of living in impoverished small town America. It flips between jovial Western and teeth gritting thriller flawlessly.
The first half-hour of “Sausage Party” is a comedy masterpiece. With great jokes and an amazing musical number, the film delivers on all cylinders. However, when the “chosen” ones realize what the outside world has in store for them, it becomes a hit or miss comedy. And a filthy one.
“Pete’s Dragon” is a sure bet for families needing a Summer escape and a positive message, but just like the original, this remake may inevitably end up in the Disney discount bin.
“Suicide Squad” is a wham-bam action punch with enough exuberant and unique performances to help overshadow the lacking plot structure. You’ll be talking about Robbie’s Harley Quinn more than you will about Leto’s Joker
It makes sense that the film is directed and written by the writers of “The Hangover” because it shares a lot of that film’s DNA. Three people, mismatched at times, decide to cut loose with alcohol and dirty talk.
“Nerve” is a sleek techno thriller utilizing America’s current craving for online infamy, naive adolescent sensibilities, and the mob mentality that the Internet has created.
Like the best laid plans of a “Saturday Night Live” inspired film, the bits only work in small doses. Exposing the girls to 90 minutes of screen time leads to a lot of hit-and-miss jokes and outrageous situations.
The new installment is pretty damn funny and stands as tall as the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man.
We’ve seen “The Infiltrator” before. There are plenty of movies about the lengthy history of the worldwide drug war. But Cranston’s multi-faceted acting abilities create tension and heart pounding action where there isn’t.
“Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates” has four actors that have no chemistry and are recycling vulgar jokes and punchlines from much better films. This movie should have been called “Zac, Aubrey, Adam and Anna Wanted to go to Hawaii”.
“The Secret Life of Pets” is from the same studio that brought you the adorable Minions from the “Despicable Me” films, and the animation is amazing. One scene finds our two pups in water that looks so realistic you can feel the wetness.
“The Legend of Tarzan” is a contrived, silly blockbuster. But on that same note, it’s an entertaining, and funny, summer escape.
Told with the same exuberance as the filmmakers being profiled, “RAIDERS!” shares the backstory of the production, including footage both from the film and behind the scenes.
Based on Roald Dahl’s book, in the hands of director Spielberg, “The BFG” becomes a new masterpiece that the whole family will enjoy.
“The Purge: Election Year” is the best of three, but still more of the same. It’s not a smart, tongue-in-cheek look at our inherently violent culture, race relations, or the current American class struggle. But it’s a chance to watch and cheer on our most animalistic tendencies, killing people who are holding us down.
Five stars. An unconventional spin on the tried-and-true old mentor meeting his younger match that manages to be action packed, unpredictable and heartfelt without veering into the saccharine territory oft trod by coming of age stories…Julian Dennison delivers a star-making performance.
“Free State of Jones” is another; white man comes to save the day for minorities, history lesson from Hollywood.
“A Fat Wreck: The Punk U Mentary” is half inspirational story of chosen family and community and half debauchery as it tells the story of Fat Wreck Chords founder Fat Mike (bassist for the band NOFX) and his ex-wife Erin-Kelly Burkett.
Funny as hell, with a sweet message built in, “Central Intelligence” is successful in part thanks to its genius casting, which makes Hart the Bud Abbott-like straight man while Johnson grabs the majority of the laughs.
It’s known that Pixar is willing to do sequel, just as long as it’s as emotionally resonant and intellectually stimulating as the original. “Finding Dory” does both, even while treading familiar waters.
“Warcraft” is a bore in desperate need of a skip button. It’s another lazy attempt by the studios to cash on naïve videogamers.
A true “fly on the wall” documentary, “Weiner” gives the viewer almost unfettered access to the man and his campaign.
It does drag on some but Samberg’s performance is so infectious that you’re willing to let a couple slow parts go by.
The CGI spectacle steps in where the script is missing, providing mouth silencing eye candy for the kids. So if you’re in need of a two hour daycare, this might be your best bet.
One half performance footage from Duff’s book reading at The Moore Theater in Seattle, WA and one half documentary consisting of archival footage and new interviews with former/current band members and friends. “It’s So Easy And Other Lies” is a unique spin on your standard biographical documentary.
4 Stars. Outrageously funny from start to finish…The two leads play off each other perfectly.
It’s just unfortunate that such an enlightening movie has to hammer home its theme at nearly every chance it can get. It’s nice to see that the five male writers were willing to flip the script and poke fun at the overtly sexual nature of college men who see women as objects.
X-Meh “With a cast that includes three Oscar-nominees, it seems like they may have gotten bored with their roles. All do good work here, but there almost seems to be a look of relief in their eyes that they’re done with the spandex for good. “
5 Stars. Marvel has seriously outdone themselves once again. Civil War is a near-flawless cinematic experience that neatly packages one of the most pivotal story lines in comic book history.
I urge you to head to the theatre. You won’t be disappointed.
From the brutalist production design to a stunning score by Clint Mansell (Requiem for a Dream), High-Rise is a darkly humorous, sexy, and oftentimes grotesque cinematic experience.
“Papa: Hemingway in Cuba” feels like a TV movie with a few ‘F’ bombs to spice it up
As for all you hard working moms in the world out there, you do deserve a movie that loves and supports you, but “Mother’s Day” is not that movie
Once we get our fill of Nazi symbolism, hidden drug rooms, and knives to the stomach and throat, the “Green Room” is forgettable
Horror anthologies thrive on bringing a lot of different things to the table…but if there’s one thing they shouldn’t be, it’s boring. And for seven out of eight of these, I was just plain bored.
The film moves quickly, buoyed by the performances of its stars.
Fans of the horror movie genre might be able to pick up on what’s going on, but not without a lot of fight and sway by “The Invitation”.
“Criminal” takes itself too seriously to be enjoyably farcical and its characters are too inherently silly to be earnest.
Told through the amazing use of computer generation, “The Jungle Book” is very faithful to the animated film that proceeds
A bio-pic that flits around, “Born to Be Blue” takes its name from one of Baker’s best known songs.
Demolition is poignant, yet emotionally rejuvenating. It’s a visually entertaining story, with an at-times confusing narrative.
A film that is both funny and works to McCarthy’s strengths. It is a little over the top at times (and a little more “adult” than you might expect) but it’s definitely a film that will make you laugh out loud.
“The onslaught of darkness in I Saw the Light is it makes Williams’s untimely passing at age 29 feel like a foregone conclusion. Still, as a showcase for the versatile Hiddleston and fiery Olsen, I Saw the Light impresses.” This film is playing in NY, LA & Nashville, nationwide on Friday.
As a big fan of both Lainie Kazan and Michael Constantine, I enjoyed most of the film.
Though not the first live concert performance release from metal gods Judas Priest it is however the first live release from the band to cover material from practically every album including “Redeemer of Souls”.
It’s hard to predict where “Batman V. Superman” will fall in the inevitable grand scheme of things
Let me talk to the few of you who have never seen these movies and may be interested in possibly starting this series. Don’t. Just don’t.
A word to the wise; if you go into this film looking for the monsters from J.J. Abrams film “Cloverfield” you may be disappointed. However, if you are in the mood for a small and satisfying thriller, then brave the bunker at “10 Cloverfield Lane.”
A smartly made film that compares in style with “The Departed,” “American Bred” is a classic mob movie with a modern twist
Well-made and much more serious than it’s being marketed, “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot” gives Tina Fey to flex some acting chops you may not know she possessed
A week after the 88th Academy Awards, we’re already looking at next year’s contender for Best Animated Feature
“Gods of Egypt” is that it’s a decent waste of two hours, but I wouldn’t recommend you drop a single buck on this one.
The action set-pieces are well performed and director Hillcoat keeps the film moving from the first frame to the last.
“Eddie the Eagle” doesn’t soar as high as it could have, but at least it doesn’t crash.
If you’re a fan of the genre’ you won’t be disappointed by FORSAKEN.
Most religious movies feel phony and cheesy when preaching the Gospel, but “Risen” presents it for what it is, what it means, and the good natured spirit of it all.
Watching The Witch is a study in psychological stress. It’s slow-paced and deliberate, and it leaves you with the feeling that you’ve seen something that you weren’t supposed to.
Fans of Moore will appreciate his ideas behind the film. Those who aren’t probably won’t. To them I suggest moving to Germany, where your local doctor can write you a prescription for a three-week stay at a posh spa to relieve the tension.
Stiller and Wilson give their all (it’s obvious that they enjoy working together), but it’s not enough to save this film.
A superhero film is only as good as the actor playing him and, if ever an actor was meant to play Deadpool, it is Ryan Reynolds.
A fine alternative if you’re tired of bears, both grizzlies and pandas.
What makes this film a notch above other cookie-cutter Sparks adaptations is a strong cast
“Hail, Caesar!” is rich with witty dialogue involving thick-headed actors and sophisticated directors
Portions of the film play like a straight-up thriller, others like a scene taken directly from the video game “Grand Theft Auto.”
Technically the film is top notch. The special effects are well done and the various period pieces take you back to a time…
“I Am Thor” is more than just your basic rise, fall and rise again type of documentary.
The following plea is for Chloe Grace Moretz: “PLEASE FIND A NEW AGENT!”
Visually, “Anomalisa” draws you in with its 3D puppets populating the world
“Ride Along 2” isn’t insultingly bad, but it’s biggest problem is that it’s indolent
“13 Hours” ranks with “Platoon” as a true depiction of what war really is
This is, in my opinion, the best film of 2015
All in all, when the kids are disappointed that “Star Wars” is sold out, you can have a little fun with them here
Built on a solid performance by Will Smith
Dumb is the only word I would use to describe 2015’s “Point Break”.
On one hand, “Youth” is an audio, visual, and acting triumph, but on the other hand, “Youth” is a curious dud.
The highlight of “Joy” is watching Lawrence at work
Over-the-top bloody…so be prepared for an adult evening out. And an entertaining one.
Make an investment in “The Big Short”…it’s a sure thing!
As the most anticipated film release that I can remember in some time, “The Force Awakens” has some big shoes to fill. And fill them it does.
“In the Heart of the Sea” finds entertainment when it relies on the strength of its actors and captures the feeling of isolation amongst the crisp, calm sea.
“Victor Frankenstein”…is out before the holidays to bore audiences instead of terrifying them.
Whether you look at it as a continuation of the “Rocky” saga or take it in as a stand-alone film, “Creed” is a crowd pleaser!
From the PIXAR division of Disney, “The Good Dinosaur” is a visual treat for the eyes
As the holiday season ascends upon us, I hope you find the time to take a trip through “The Looking Glass.” You will be entertained by what you find.
A beautifully crafted romantic drama from Todd Haynes (of 2002’s lauded Far From Heaven). Haynes once again showcases the 1950s as the backdrop for simmering social tensions and stellar work from his lead actresses.
“Hunger Games” is another instance where the story would have been much better off as one impactful final movie than two alright flicks.
Put it all together and “Spotlight” is one of the year’s best films!
“The Night Before” spikes the eggnog and laces the mistletoe with hallucinogens, but it accomplishes that rare Christmas miracle, of making my Grinch heart grow three sizes
“Love the Coopers” is full of incomplete characters and so many cliché’s stolen from other holiday films
Based on true events, and well balanced, the story of “The 33” may be a surprise to many who only know the basics of the event
Emotionally exhausting, “Room” is a film that you will continue to think of long after you’ve left the theatre
“My All American” has the heart and soul we’ve seen in other sports movie, but it doesn’t deliver it in an entertaining or touching fashion