I knew Peter Farrelly directed this picture going in, but it still seemed strange seeing the name of the person who helmed movies like “The Heartbreak Kid” and “Hall Pass” attached during the end credits.
“Green Book” is titled after a sort of brochure used decades ago in the Jim Crow era which listed hospitality businesses that were safe and/or open to African Americans, mainly in the southeastern United States. The movie follows a lower-middle class Italian nightclub bouncer-turned driver named Tony (Viggo Mortensen), whose latest job is driving Dr. Don Shirley (Maherhsala Ali), an African American pianist.
Continue reading “REVIEW: While its heart is in the right place, ‘Green Book’ is largely average”
Please let “Creed III” start with Adonis Creed fighting John Cena for charity.
Yes, that’s a joke, but one can’t help but feel the “Creed” saga is on the same trajectory as the original “Rocky” series. In all fairness, though, the latest picture in the Balboa Cinematic Universe is pretty good.
Continue reading “REVIEW: Sports and drama collide for a good film in ‘Creed II’”
The streak, unfortunately, is over.
For roughly a decade, I gave movies made by Disney’s animation studio very high marks, usually a 4/5 or higher, and regularly included them in my top 10 lists at the end of the year. However, “Ralph Breaks the Internet,” which certainly isn’t bad per se, has ended that consistency, as it’s simply mediocre.
More on that in a moment, but let’s look into what this sequel is all about. Unlike this summer’s “Incredibles 2,” which picked up immediately after the first, “Ralph breaks the Internet” is set in the present time and acknowledges the six years that have passed since the original picture, released in 2012.
Continue reading “REVIEW: While ‘Ralph Breaks the Internet’ has its moments, the movie stumbles too much”
I can certainly forgive Melissa McCarthy for “The Happytime Murders” thanks to her work here.
“Can You Ever Forgive Me” is a movie taking place in the early 1990s. The film follows Lee Israel (McCarthy), an author whose main focus are biographical books. Unfortunately, the line of work hasn’t exactly produced much in earnings.
Behind on rent, and with not much new income, she decides to sell an old letter by another writer. Upon doing so, she learns that it warrants some good money. As a result, she comes up with a scheme to forge these types of letters and sell them to the highest bidder. The process is successful initially but her work ends up leaving a paper trail for law enforcement.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Can You Ever Forgive Me’ is a fantastic dramedy”
The difficult struggles of addiction, and the impacts it has on family members, are explored heavily in this movie starring Steve Carell and Timothee Chalamet.
Carell plays David Sheff, a father whose son Nic (Chalamet) is addicted to methamphetamine and other drugs. The movie begins with David identifying his son’s issues and looking at the solutions that are on the table.
However, despite continued efforts, the addiction remains a problem for Nic, and the situation puts continuous strain on both main characters, as well as their relationship.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Beautiful Boy’ emotionally captures the struggles of addiction”
The horrific, despicable practice of gay conversion “therapy” is depicted in this film, based on the true story of Garrard Conley, who wrote a memoir with the same name.
The film tells a version of the true story through the character Jared (Lucas Hedges). The son of a Baptist preacher, Jared is a young man who just after starting college is forced to go to a gay conversion establishment.
The movie opens with Jared starting his time at the conversion facility, and from there, showcases a series of flashbacks where it details how Jared was forcibly outed and why his parents Marshall (Russell Crowe) and Nancy (Nicole Kidman) reacted the way they did.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Boy Erased’ is a powerful look at a tragic subject”
A trio of women going through grief are quickly forced into action in this new heist flick.
“Widows” takes place in an area of Chicago and follows a group of women, Veronica (Viola Davis), Linda (Michelle Rodriguez) and Alice (Elizabeth Debicki). At the movie’s onset, the three have never met each other, but their husbands all work closely. However, their work includes pulling off criminal heists.
The film picks up with one of these jobs, helmed by Veronica’s husband Harry (Liam Neeson), going wrong and the whole crew getting killed. Not only does this put the three women in the grieving process, but the job their husbands attempted has left a sort of trail, putting them in danger. As a result, they decide to go through with a plan originally written up by Harry and pull off the heist to begin new lives.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Widows’ is a disappointing time at the theater.”
It’s safe to say that the magic is gone.
For the uninitiated, “Crimes of Grindelwald” is the second installment of the “Fantastic Beasts” series, which is a spinoff of the “Harry Potter” movies. The series is set decades before the “Harry Potter” events and follows a wizard named Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne), who’s an expert when it comes to dealing with various creatures.
In this installment, Scamander is tasked by a younger Albus Dumbledore (Jude Law) to keep track of a situation in France that’s related to the fearsome antagonist of the series, Grindelwald (Johnny Depp). Like its predecessor from 2016, “Crimes” has Newt team up with his friends from New York, Jacob (Dan Fogler), Tina (Katherine Waterston) and Queenie (Alison Sudol).
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Beasts’ sequel isn’t all that fantastic”
The pacing in this movie was so fast. Maybe that would work for, I dunno, a biopic about the band Rush, but not Queen.
“Bohemian Rhapsody” tells the tale of the band Queen, with a significant focus on the life of Freddie Mercury (Rami Malek). The picture follows Mercury during his time in college where he discovers the band, all the way to his performance during the Live Aid concert.
As it goes on, the film covers Mercury’s sexual orientation, his creation of the song that shares the same name of the movie, his struggle with drugs and disagreements he had with other members of Queen.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ is a bland band biopic”
A novel with subject matter quite relevant to what’s happened in the United States over the past several years was adapted to the big screen in fairly convincing fashion.
The Hate U Give,” originally a book, is a film telling the story of Starr Carter (Amandla Stenberg), who lives in a mostly African American neighborhood, but attends a predominantly white private institution. The film picks up with Starr heading into a weekend, where she eventually attends a house party. There, she meets a childhood friend named Khalil (Algee Smith), who offers to drive her home.
Along the drive back home, Khalil is pulled over by a white police officer and, while leaning in the car to check on Starr, is shot and killed. What follows is a situation where Starr has to deal with speaking about the incident with law enforcement, the press, and her friends and relatives. As a result, the situation creates a lot of stress for the high schooler.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Hate U Give,’ while not perfect, still has impact”