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CrAiGeR's REVIEW ARCHIVES

All of CrAiGeR's full-length reviews of contemporary films since Jan 2004

 

 

CrAiGeR's FOUR STAR REVIEWS

Listing of every FOUR STAR review that CrAiGeR has ever written (excludes retro-reviews)

 

 

CrAiGeR's WORST REVIEWS

Listing of every one and a half star or lower review that CrAiGeR has ever written

 

 

CrAiGeR's RETROSPECTIVE REVIEW ARCHIVES

CrAiGeR revisits classic films from

the past

 

 

CrAiGeR's YEARLY BEST/WORST LISTS

CrAiGeR dishes out his TEN BEST and TEN WORST films for every year since 2000

 

 

 

CrAiGeR's TEN MOST OVER-RATED FILMS OF ALL-TIME

CrAiGeR unleashes his list of ten films that he felt did not deserve universal fan accolades and critical praise.

 

 

CrAiGeR's TEN MOST INFLUENTIAL FILMS OF THE LAST 25 YEARS 

CrAiGeR ruminates on ten films he feels most directly influenced the business and making of movies since 1986.

 

 

 

CrAiGeR's TEN BEST FILMS of the 2000's

 

 

CrAiGeR's TEN BEST FILMS of the 1990's

 

 

CrAiGeR's TEN BEST FILMS of the 1980's

 

 

CrAiGeR's TEN BEST FILMS of the 1970's

 

 

CrAiGeR's TEN BEST FILMS of the 1960's

 

 

CrAiGeR's TEN BEST FILMS of the 1950's

 

 

CrAiGeR's TEN BEST FILMS of the 1940's

 

 

 

 

 

 

VENOM 

(PG-13) jj1/2 

"I'm Spider-Man's reckoning!"

The character of Venom - first introduced nearly thirty years ago to the pages of Marvel Comics' Amazing Spider-Man #300  - has fully emerged over that period as not only one of the web crawler's most famous and nightmarish of villains, but also as an extremely popular fan favorite among comic readers.  This, rather predictably, led to an awfully hasty and not fully fleshed out appearance as one of the three chief antagonists in Sam Raimi's SPIDER-MAN 3...

Posted October 21, 2018

A STAR IS BORN (R) jjjj

An invigorating new lease on an old Hollywood story

I personally find it so achingly difficult to screen every new remake that sees the cinematic light of day as of late.  Unless you have something fresh and revitalizing to bring to the table while maintaining some semblance of faithfulness to the original (my litmus test for good remakes), then what's the point?  And A STAR IS BORN has certainly been made and remade far more times than I sometimes can keep track of...

Posted October 21, 2018

LEAVE NO TRACE (R) jjjj

Into the wild

Writer/director Debra Granik's LEAVE NO TRACE is one of the more quietly understated, but ultimately powerful character dramas that has come out this year, mostly due to her dedicated observational eye as a filmmaker, a finely attuned cast, and a compelling thematic undercurrent about the nature of survival and how parents cope with rearing their children without any conveniences of a modern technological society...

Posted October 21, 2018

LIFE ITSELF (R) jj1/2

A box of chocolates drama

The new drama LIFE ITSELF - not to be at all confused with the documentary of the same name about the life and times of late film critic Roger Ebert - is a multi-generational portrait of people that seem inexplicably drawn together via some twisted form of fate.  It's from writer/director Dan Fogelman, perhaps best known for creating the breakout TV series THIS IS US as well has having penned screenplays for films like CRAZY, STUPID, LOVE and CARS...

Posted October 11, 2018

GOTTI  (R) j1/2

Badfellas

GOTTI is the BATTLEFIELD EARTH of fact based mob dramas.  It simply has no business being as categorically awful as it is.  The film is, of course, based on the life of notorious Italian American New York residing John Gotti, who became one of the most powerful and ruthless mob bosses in the Big Apple's history...

Posted October 11, 2018

THE PREDATOR  (R) j1/2  

"Black!  You son of a bitch!"

 

THE PREDATOR is the fourth film in the science fiction series, coming after the original 1987 John McTiernan directed/Arnold Schwarzenegger starring classic, the not bad/not good 1990 sequel, and the surprisingly well oiled 2010 sequel (not including, of course, some terrible ALIEN VS. PREDATOR spin-off efforts).  Considering that THE PREDATOR (emphasis on THE to help segregate it apart from the introductory installment) has writer/director Shane Black at the helm should equal instant buzz...

 

Posted October 2, 2018

FAHRENHEIT 11/9  (R) jjj

We're on a road to nowhere

According to director Michael Moore, America and its political party system is royally screwed.  Early on in his latest documentary FAHRENHEIT 11/9 he plainly asks viewers one simple and blunt question about the current state of affairs in his home country: "How the fuck did this all happen?"  How, indeed.  Moore has made a career of out making documentaries the push buttons on multiple social/cultural/political ills...

Posted October 2, 2018

MANDY  (R) jjj1/2  

A surreal Cage-ian Death Wish

 

At the risk of sounding pretentious, MANDY is a movie that isn't designed to be passively watched, but rather actively experienced.  I can't think of any other way to relay how to view this action/horror film, which feels like a 1980s Heavy Metal album come to nightmarish life crossed morphed with an intense fever dream.  It's also an unrelentingly gory revenge thriller, but even that basic descriptor doesn't do it much justice...

.

Posted October 2, 2018

ALPHA  

(PG-13) jjj1/2  

A stone age boy and his dog

I engage in no hyperbole whatsoever in saying that there has never been a movie quite like ALPHA about man's relationship with man's best friend.  Yes, there are innumerable examples of canine centric dramas that have delicately and poignantly relayed how owning a pet can be a most special and life changing gift, but ALPHA has much vaster ambitions than that....

Posted Posted October 2, 2018

WHITE BOY RICK  (R) jjj

Diaries of a teenage informant

 

WHITE BOY RICK is a new fact based period crime drama that's painted in extremely familiar gangster genre formulas (down on his luck hoodlum rises above his station in life to become a major criminal player) and a somewhat rushed tone that could have perhaps benefited from a mini-series or long form documentary format.  Yet, it's potently and authentically acted throughout and contains a hook that's most certainly fresh and worthy of cinematic exploration...

.

Posted September 21, 2018

PEPPERMINT  (R) jj1/2

A minty revenge thriller with a bad aftertaste

 

The ridiculously titled PEPPERMINT - taken from, I kid you not, an ice cream flavor - is the fourth revenge porn action thriller that I've seen in 2018 alone, proving that the lurid genre is all the current rage.  It's also the second one I've seen featuring a female protagonist, coming on the heels of Coralie Fargeat's evocatively stylish REVENGE..

.

Posted September 21, 2018

HEREDITARY  (R) jj1/2

Be careful what you pass on

 

HEREDITARY is a new supernatural horror thriller that's a visceral masterpiece in terms of generating nail biting tension, haunting atmosphere, and a chillingly eerie vibe of intrigue throughout.  It contains moments of profoundly unsettling imagery that could aptly be described as Kubrickian.  Tonally and aesthetically, writer/director Ari Aster's feature film debut is astonishingly well crafted, and the manner that he maintains - throughout most of the film's running time - a bona fide nerve wracking tone is to his rookie filmmaking credit...

 

Posted September 21, 2018

BLACKkKLANSMAN  (R) jjjj

Going undercover...the hard way

Writer/director Spike Lee has made a career out of making racially charged dramas that push all kinds of buttons with his unique brand of in-your-face bluntness.  BLACKkKLANSMAN boldly and proudly continues this trend for the acclaimed filmmaker, which finds inspiration in a highly bizarre, yet absolutely real story that's set forty years ago, but somehow manages to hold up a mirror to our current divisive times...

Posted September 11, 2018

THE HAPPYTIME MURDERS

(R) 1/2j

A happy time at the movies...it ain't

In my 43 years on the planet I've never required - nor have ever asked - for any Muppet character to curse up a storm in order to be appealing and funny in a movie.  Not.  Once.  Part of what made, for example, the late Jim Henson's iconic Muppet characters so endlessly endearing was that they were all, in their own respective and unique ways, as charming as any of the human characters that surrounded them...

Posted September 11, 2018

UPGRADE (R) jjj

"Gentleman: we can rebuild him...we have the technology..."

 

The futuristic science fiction thriller UPGRADE is made up of a considerable number of regurgitated thematic parts from countless other past efforts in the genre in terms of man's symbiotic, but strained relationship with machines and AI technology.  It also contains obligatory elements of the revenge thriller thrown in for good measure that we're all seen before...

 

Posted September 11, 2018

SUMMER OF '84 (R) jjj

Stranger things are afoot in small town Oregon

The nostalgically titled SUMMER OF '84 conjures up memories for me of walking to the local video store during my teen years and cruising through the B-grade horror section and seeing a lot of box art that echoes this film's poster.  And I mean that as a sincere compliment.  This Canadian/American production concerns a group of four suburban teens that are amateur sleuths and believe - in their heart of hearts - that one of their kindly neighbors is indeed a vile serial killer of children...

Posted September 11, 2018

MILE 22 (R) j1/2

ESCORT MISSION: THE MOVIE

 

The new espionage action thriller MILE 22 is one of the most frustratingly over-directed and hyperactively edited films that I've seen this year.  It's almost as if director Peter Berg was high on massive quantities of speed while making it, seeing as the resulting film is so headache inducing and eye straining that cinemas should be handing out Aspirins to patrons after they exit their screenings of it...

 

Posted August 30, 2018

THE MEG  

(PG-13) jjj

Somewhere...beyond the...deep blue sea

 

THE MEG takes its name from the "Megaldon," a 75 foot long prehistoric shark the size of a whale.  It's an action thriller about of group of intrepid and courageous scientists that take on this aquatic menace to ensure that it doesn't lay waste to the rest of humanity that likes to reside on beachfront property.  It's also based, so I've been told by many, on the 1997 novel of the same name by Steve Alten, and as to whether or not it's a faithful appropriation of the source material I couldn't say...

 

Posted August 30, 2018

EIGHTH GRADE (R) jjjj

Growing pains

There have seen an awful lot of movies about high school life, but so very few that have dealt with the awkward and sometimes anxiety plagued transition that kids make while moving from elementary to high school, which is what makes writer/director Bo Burnham's very specifically titled EIGHTH GRADE so ultimately invigorating for an extremely over packed genre...

Posted August 30, 2018

LIFE OF THE PARTY (PG-13) jj

BACK TO SCHOOL...redux

I'm literally going to start my review of the new Melissa McCarthy led college comedy LIFE OF THE PARTY in the exact same manner as I did when I opened my review of her last comedy THE BOSS: I don’t hate Melissa McCarthy.  I really don’t, contrary to what many of you may think.  She’s talented.  That much is clear...

Posted August 30, 2018

CHRISTOPHER ROBIN  

(PG) jjj

A bear named Winnie

 

CHRISTOPHER ROBIN is the kind of sweet and good natured family film that are simply not made in abundance anymore.  Dripping with good natured and infectious charm, the latest live action Disney effort (seeking inspiration from one of their classic and iconic animated films) reminds viewers of the enjoyable virtues of simply told fables, and ones done without any semblance of annoying cynicism or forced edge...

 

Posted August 17, 2018

THREE IDENTICAL STRANGERS  

(PG-13) jjj1/2

You couldn't possibly make this up

I want you all to tap into the recesses of your imaginations to help me set up the new documentary THREE IDENTICAL STRANGERS.  Close your eyes:  Imagine, if you would, that you're a bright and eager minded teenager about to attend your very first day of college.  As a brand new student for the academic year you enter into post-secondary studies knowing...that you know nobody at this school...

Posted August 17, 2018

THE RIDER  (R) jjjj

A western drama from a different prerogative

I've seen so many countless permutations of the western genre over the years that I've frankly lost count, but THE RIDER is in a whole other ultra rare breed altogether.  Just how ultra rare, you may ask?  It's a genre busting effort featuring indigenous cowboys from reservations starring non-actors playing semi-fictionalized versions of themselves who are all directed by a female Chinese filmmaker...

Posted August 17, 2018

MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE - FALLOUT  

(PG-13) jjjj

An impossibly great sequel

This really, really shouldn't be happening.  Every fiber of my film critic being is telling me otherwise, but this fifth MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE sequel - defying all odds and past cinematic precedents - has triumphantly emerged as arguably the very best entry in twenty-plus year old espionage series, something that I've been finding myself saying rather inexplicably and somewhat impossibly when every new sequel hits theaters...

Posted August 8, 2018

THE EQUALIZER 2 (R) jjj

The sequalizer   

THE EQUALIZER 2 has a sensationally effective opening sequence.  During it we are re-introduced to ex-CIA agent turned big box store employee turned revenge dispensing machine Robert McCall (Denzel Washington) disguised as a devout Muslim traveling through Turkey via high speed train.  Don't ask...just hear me out...

Posted August 8, 2018

I FEEL PRETTY (R) j1/2

I feel cheated

I FEEL PRETTY is a new comedy with awfully sweet and honorable intentions in terms of its core message and themes, but the manner with which it executes them is kind of maddeningly sloppy and counterproductive.  Without question, this latest Amy Schumer starring vehicle - via its somewhat high concept narrative - advocates a message of believing in oneself and the overall importance of having inner self confidence...

Posted August 8, 2018

ANT-MAN AND THE WASP  

(PG-13) jj1/2

Larger scaled sequel nets tiny returns

Considering the galactic solemnity and unfathomably dire stakes at the climax of the very recently released AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR, one could easily argue that a return to the frivolous merriment of the ANT-MAN films would feel like relative comfort food right about now...

Posted July 29, 2018

THE FIRST PURGE  (R) jj1/2 

A prequel cleansing

I will never feel bad - nor will I ever apologize - for enjoying a majority of THE PURGE movies.  No one should ever confuse them with high art.  They're sleazy B-grade trash, but they're - in reasonable dosages - enjoyable and competently made trash.  Whereas the first film in writer/director James DeMonaco's dystopian sci-fi horror thriller series sort of stumbled out of the blocks as a semi-serious social/political satire crossed morphed with a home invasion thriller...

Posted July 29, 2018

SKYSCRAPER

(PG-13) jj

Dying hard in a towering inferno

I think one of the essential problems with Dwayne Johnson's recent film career is that he's favoring an aggressive paycheck grabbing quantity of films to quality of films approach to selecting his projects.  There's a reason The Rock is the highest paid actor working in contemporary movies: It has everything to do with the fact that he's taking just about any job given to him...

Posted July 29, 2018

WON'T YOU BE MY NEIGHBOR?  

(PG-13) jjjj

It's a beautiful day in the cinema...

There's a moment in the Morgan Neville's brilliant  documentary WON'T YOU BE MY NEIGHBOR? that brought me as close to tears as any other recent movie.  A depressed young boy is relaying to Fred Rogers how his cat recently died.  Speaking to the child directly and sincerely through a feline puppet, Rogers displays enormous empathy while consoling the grieving lad.  Within no time, the downtrodden boy eventually smiles...

Posted July 16, 2018

FIRST REFORMED (R) jjjj

Lost enlightenment

Paul Schrader's FIRST REFORMED is a faith-in-crisis drama about a man of the cloth that's being thrust down a dark chasm of complete emotional and spiritual breakdown.  Calling this a religious movie almost doesn't do it any justice, seeing as Schrader has decidedly more up his sleeve than exploring his character's belief in the almighty...

Posted July 16, 2018

SICARIO: DAY OF THE SOLDADO

(R) jjj

A complicated war on drugs

Upon reflecting on 2015's SICARIO - which, at the time of its release, I thought was one of the best films of its respective year - I never once thought that it was a film with sequel and/or franchise potential written all over it.  With the coldly calculating direction of Denis Villeneuve and intense scripting by Taylor Sheridan, the first SICARIO was a pulse pounding and compellingly layered war on drugs thriller with palpable real world reverberations....

Posted July 16, 2018

JURASSIC WORLD: FALLEN KINGDOM  

(PG-13) j1/2

Oh, how a once mighty series has fallen

Remember what it was like to see a living, breathing dinosaur come lovingly and thrillingly to life for the first time in Steven Spielberg's original JURASSIC PARK?  It was a legitimately awe inspiring moment that instilled in viewers a sense of childlike wonder in ways that few films of its era could (that, and this moment ushered in - for better or worse - a wide-sweeping computer generated visual effects revolution whose ripple effects can still be felt to this very day...

Posted July 3, 2018

THE DEATH OF STALIN (R) jjjj

The Russians are coming, the Russians are coming!

Somewhat like Stanley Kubrick's DR. STRANGELOVE, Armando Iannucci's THE DEATH OF STALIN is a hilariously macabre work of political satire that seems both broadly divorced from reality while simultaneously holding up a mirror up to it.  This grim historical farce - based on a French graphic novel - is hysterical, yes, but it's also a work of unnerving bleakness that pains to show the Soviet Union's Joseph Stalin for what he was - a brutal and cruel dictator... 

Posted July 3, 2018

INCREDIBLES 2  

(PG) jjj

Where...is...my...super suit!?

 

Upon reflection, the super hero movie genre was not at its peak when Brad Bird's THE INCREDIBLES was released back in 2004.  This was years before the first IRON MAN was released and before the Marvel Cinematic Universe was even a pop culture entity.  Hell, THE INCREDIBLES even predated Christopher Nolan's groundbreaking DARK KNIGHT Trilogy, which fundamentally altered the makeup and landscape of the genre in incalculable and influential ways... 

 

Posted June 29, 2018

TAG (R) jj1/2

You're it!

Full disclosure: I was never a big Tag fan growing up.  I never felt that every player was on an equal playing field and it absolutely favored the most dexterous and quick.  Now, Hide and Seek...oh boy... that was a great game, and far more democratic minded.  You could be absolutely athletically challenged and still succeed at it, especially if you had good instincts and could disappear in the most unlikely and difficult to find areas...

Posted June 29, 2018

GRINGO  (R) jj1/2

A south of the border crime comedy that goes south really fast

The new Amazon Studios production GRINGO is a crime comedy that's so tonally schizophrenic throughout that I left my screening having no real idea what kind of movie it was really trying to be.  Disappointingly directed by Australian filmmaker Nash Edgerton - the actor/stuntman turned director that made one of the best least seen noir thrillers of the last decade in 2008's THE SQUARE...

Posted June 29, 2018

OCEAN'S 8  (PG-13) jjj

Never send a man to do a woman's job

Somewhat confusingly, OCEAN'S 8 comes numerically before the previous OCEAN'S films - comprised of Steven Soderbergh's 2001 remake of the 1960s Rat Pack fuelled heist flick, followed by two increasingly inferior sequels in 2004's OCEAN'S TWELVE and 2007's OCEAN'S THIRTEEN.  This may throw casually filmgoers for a loop...

Posted June 20, 2018

THE HURRICANE HEIST (PG-13) j

A water logged crime thriller

The hilariously named THE HURRICANE HEIST most definitely contains - ahem! - a heist and a hurricane, so in terms of advertised promises this action thriller wholeheartedly delivers.  It's also a spectacularly stupid movie, but one that regrettably never harnesses its silliness like a badge of honor, nor does it really even engage in any self-referential winking to the audience that it knows what kind of film it is...

Posted June 20, 2018

ADRIFT  (PG-13) jjj

All is lost...redux

ADRIFT is a new fact based outdoor survival thriller that's cross morphed with a romance drama, which immediately doesn't sound particularly enticing on paper.  Yet, it tells the harrowing true story of Tami Oldman, whom in September of 1983 sailed into a rather powerful hurricane in the middle of the Pacific Ocean and came out of it alive with a severely damaged boat, very little water and rations and no radio support...

Posted June 12, 2018

YOU WERE NEVER REALLY HERE

(R) jjjj

You talkin' to me?

Very few vigilante thrillers are as unnervingly suspenseful, uncompromisingly bleak, and thoroughly disturbing as Lynne Ramsay's YOU WERE NEVER REALLY HERE, which is as brutally punishing to endure in its swift and refreshingly economical running time of 90-plus-minutes as any I've seen.  I mean that last part as a sincere compliment.  Based on the book of the same name by Jonathan Ames, Ramsay's film bares a superficial comparison to Martin Scorsese's TAXI DRIVER...

Posted June 12, 2018

SOLO: A STAR WARS STORY

(PG-13) jj

I got a very bad feeling about this...

I knew that SOLO: A STAR WARS STORY was going to be creatively lethargic and uninspired within my first 60 seconds of watching it.  During that time viewers are introduced to three stanzas worth of exposition heavy title cards that are kind of blandly and lazily thrown up on screen.  Now, one of the most iconic and memorable images of the entire STAR WARS franchise is the sight of the film's opening title cards migrating up the screen...

Posted June 3, 2018

WINCHESTER  (PG-13) jj

Guns and ghosts 

 

WINCHESTER is a new historical horror thriller that's set in an infamous haunted mansion in 1906 San Jose, just before the Great Earthquake that ravaged during the same year.  The residence - located at 525 South Winchester Blvd - was renown for its massive size and multiple architectural abnormalities.  It was also home to Sarah Winchester, the heiress to the Winchester Rifle empire and fortune...

 

Posted June 3, 2018

DARK CRIMES  (R) j

An unpleasantly bleak thriller

DARK CRIMES is one of the most repellently depressing films that I've seen in recent memory, a would-be intoxicating murder-mystery thriller that's made all the more unsettling because of its dicey subject matter handling and because it represents a return to the silver screen by Jim Carrey, his first film as a lead since starring in DUMB AND DUMBER TO...

Posted June 3, 2018

DEADPOOL 2  (R) jjj

Maximum sequel effort

The first DEADPOOL movie gleefully - and sometimes sadistically - turned comic book film genre conventions and troupes upside on their heads.  Ryan Reynolds' fourth wall breaking "merc with the mouth" was just the right kind of self-referential jolt to the heart that super hero films needed, and the relatively cheap $58 million 2016 outing featured three jokes per minute pacing in showcasing this unique titular character's highly subversive wit and edge...

Posted May 25, 2018

REVENGE (R) jjj1/2

Best served cold

I usually don't really enjoy the subgenre of rape revenge thrillers, mostly because they seem more heavily bent towards sensationalism and less towards true feminine empowerment.  There is something to be said about the longstanding legacy (and not a particularly honorable one) of exploitation films that have painted their female characters as one note sex objects or, worse yet, one dimensional victims...

Posted May 25, 2018

CHAPPAQUIDDICK (R) jjj

The man who would never be President

Controversy has forever dogged Senator Edward "Ted" Kennedy up until his death in 2009, ostensibly stemming from the "Chappaquiddick Incident," which the new historical drama CHAPPAQUIDDICK takes its name.  Back in the early morning hours of July 18, 1969 the then 37-year-old Kennedy was driving around with 28-year-old Mary Jo Kopechne when he suddenly careened his vehicle off the road on Chappaquiddick Island...

Posted May 25, 2018

TULLY (R) jjj

How the better half lives

Being a mother is a wonderful, life altering responsibility.  It's also tortuously difficult and can push the best of women to the point of complete physical and mental implosion. I've seen so many countless films in my days about what it means to be a life giver, but so very few unflinchingly capture the worst aspects of being one in quite the same manner as Jason Reitman's TULLY, which delves into the whirlwind of contradictions that typifies the modern parental experience...

Posted May 16, 2018

THE MIRACLE SEASON (PG) jj1/2 

An unhealthy serving of fact based sports film clichés

There's a part of me that feels awfully bad reviewing and being critical of a film like THE MIRACLE SEASON, seeing as it has awfully noble minded intentions and is a fact based sports drama that's steeped in personal tragedy.  The film takes its true story narrative from the unbelievable winning streak of the Iowa City West High School girl's volleyball team - the West High Trojans - that back in 2011 persevered after the death of their star player to go on an win their second state championship in a row...

Posted May 16, 2018

FIFTY SHADES FREED (R) j1/2

Free at last...free at last...thank God Almighty...

There are two reasons why I think FIFTY SHADES FREED is the best entry in the trilogy of films based on the inexplicably popular series of novels by E.L. James.  Seriously...hear me out.  Firstly, it's the most mercifully short entry in this soft core drama franchise, which is a major victory for all of those in attendance that will be anxiously staring at the cinema exit sign while screening it...

Posted May 16, 2018

AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR

(PG-13) jjj

Running the gauntlet

If anyone would have told me ten years ago that a super hero film featuring a B to C grade level Marvel Comics character starring a then career-in-trouble Robert Downey Jr. and directed by the man who made ELF would be a box office and critical darling and launch one of the most financially lucrative and respected franchises in motion picture history...I would have incredulously laughed in your face...

Posted May 7, 2018

FOREVER MY GIRL

(PG-13)  j1/2

Possession is not a good thing

FOREVER MY GIRL is a walking cliché factory that's a nearly unendurable watch checking bore simply by how utterly predictable the narrative becomes with each waking moment.  Based on the Heidi McLaughlin novel, the film seems like it's cherry picking the worst elements of the most forgettable Nicholas Sparks film adaptations and gathering them together to make something so dramatically bland and lifeless that I had to constantly remind myself during my screening that I had to care about what was going on...

Posted May 7, 2018

SUPER TROOPERS 2 (R) jjj

More high speed...shenanigans

Comedy sequels are a very tricky business, especially when they come several years after a cherished one that became a cult hit, leaving the makers with the dubious creative task of trying to rekindle the first entry's lighting in a bottle essence.  When the original SUPER TROOPERS opened way, way back in 2001 - one of the earliest feature films from the comedy troupe Broken Lizard - it never emerged as a major box office smash...

Posted April 29, 2018

BORG VS. McENROE (R) jjj1/2

Dawn of tennis justice

 

Everyone that's familiar with the history of professional sports and tennis will undoubtedly remember the outcome of the 1980 Wimbledon Championships, which featured then four-time singles champ, the Swedish born Bjorn Borg (the number 1 player in the world at the time), facing off against the up and coming John McEnroe in hopes of attaining an unheard of fifth consecutive  title.  The new sports drama BORG VS. McENROE takes its name from that iconic battle of tennis heavyweights, often considered one of the greatest matches in the sport's history...

 

Posted April 29, 2018

ISLES OF DOGS (PG-13) jjj1/2

Woof!

After finally watching Wes Anderson’s ISLE OF DOGS last night I’ve concluded that I’ll take his esoteric brand of joyously idiosyncratic stop motion weirdness over any clean and polished Pixar or Disney animated film any day of the week and twice on SundayThis is the second stop motion animated film from the 48-year-old auteur (after 2009's FANTASTIC MR. FOX), and it proudly and masterfully represents yet another wondrously bizarre and visually magnificent hodgepodge...

Posted April 23, 2018

RAMPAGE (PG-13) jj

Can ya smell what the mutated ape is cookin'? 

It's perhaps a highly fitting thing that the new sci-fi action thriller RAMPAGE is utterly brainless, seeing as it's ever-so-loosely based on a mid-1980's video game series of the same name that involved massive monsters decimating cities in the most basic button mashing form.  Sacrasm aside, the film certainly coasts by on the sizable charisma and star presence of Dwayne Johnson...

Posted April 23, 2018

  

 

 

BLOCKERS

(R) jjj

 

PROUD MARY

(R) j1/2  

 

A QUIET PLACE

(PG-13) jjj1/2

 

READY PLAYER ONE

(PG-13)

jj1/2  

 

THOROUGHBREDS

(R) jjj1/2

 

PACIFIC RIM UPRISING

(PG-13)

j1/2 

 

UNSANE

(R) jjj1/2

 

TOMB RAIDER

(PG-13

jjj1/2

 

LOVE, SIMON

(PG-13) jjj1/2

 

A WRINKLE IN TIME

(PG) jj

 

DEATH WISH

(R)  zero stars

 

RED SPARROW

(R) jjj

 

MUTE 

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BLACK PANTHER

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THE 15:17 TO PARIS

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THE POLKA KING

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PHANTOM THREAD

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THE CLOVERFIELD PARADOX

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DEN OF THIEVES

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MAZE RUNNER: THE DEATH CURE

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12 STRONG

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CALL ME BY YOUR NAME

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HOSTILES

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THE POST

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THE COMMUTER

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MOLLY'S GAME

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DOWNSIZING

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THE GREATEST SHOWMAN

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JUMANJI: WELCOME TO THE JUNGLE

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BRIGHT

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DARKEST HOUR

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STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI

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