REVIEW: Underneath the sheen of great visuals, ‘Dune’ is a dull experience

This marks the second time the book “Dune” has been adapted into a feature film, with the first attempt coming out in 1984.

Having never heard of either the book or the 84 movie, I walked into this experience with a fresh perspective.

The film’s main character is Paul (Timothee Chalamet), a young man who’s heir to the throne of House Atreides. The house is one of several noble families who control planets and hold most of the power in the cosmos, second only to an unseen emperor.

The film opens with House Atreides, under the leadership of Duke Leto (Oscar Isaac), preparing to take control of the planet Arrakis, which was previously ruled by the rival House Harkonnen. The planet is one giant desert with dangerous conditions and even more dangerous inhabitants.

It’s not just the Arrakis inhabitants Atreies has to worry about, though, as there are other forces working against the house, too.

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REVIEW: While flawed, ‘Gunpowder Milkshake’ gives audiences a fun experience

The title “Gunpowder Milkshake” makes sense, because like the cold drink, it’s an enjoyable summer treat.

Karen Gillan stars as Sam in “Milkshake,” a young woman who works as an assassin for a mysterious agency known only as The Firm. The agency is helmed by a man named Nathan (Paul Giamatti), who sends Sam out on her assignments.

While her latest mission seems straightforward, though, it turns out to be anything but. Caught in a conflict between two violent faction related to Sam’s assignment is a young girl named Emily (Chloe Coleman). Sam decides to get involved and protect Emily, but it only complicates things as hitmen are sent after her. In response, she looks to get help from her past.

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REVIEW: ‘Snake’ origin film is an eye sore

“G.I. Joe: Retaliation” from 2013 threw out nearly 80% of the characters from 2009’s “G.I. Joe: Rise of Corbra.”

This movie, in turn, throws out  all of those films’ lore and a plethora of characters.

Get rid of what you think you know about Snake Eyes from the previous movies, because this is a completely different universe. In this movie, Henry Golding portrays Snake Eyes, a young man who witnessed his dad getting murdered when he was a kid. The film picks up with him fighting in an underground circuit, making just enough money to get by.

That chapter of his life comes to a close as he’s recruited to the Yakuza because of his fighting ability. That doesn’t last long, though, as he’s not cut out for the job and instead finds himself working alongside a man named Tommy (Andrew Koji).

It turns out Tommy is a member of a secret ninja clan known as the Arashikage and he wants Snake to be a new member. However, his loyalty to the clan becomes challenged when he’s offered information about the man who killed his father.

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REVIEW: Nein to ‘F9’

Tactical gear? Gadgets and equipment? Nope. All Dominic Toretto needs for a mission is a t-shirt, specifically one that’s skin tight.

The protagonist for all but two of the “Fast and Furious” movies, portrayed by Vin Diesel, is back but not in action at the start of “F9.” Dominic is living in peace now, raising his son and continuing his relationship with Letty (Michelle Rodriguez) in a rural area. However, this peace is broken when he’s approached by his crew of Roman (Tyrese Gibson), Tej (Chris “Ludacris” Bridges) and Ramsey (Nathalie Emmanuel) for a new mission.

The crew’s government covert operations contact Mr. Nobody (Kurt Russell) was attacked for a high tech military device and it could destabilize the world. On top of the global threat, the stakes are raised more with this mission, as the one who attacked Mr. Nobody was Dominic’s long lost brother Jakob (John Cena).

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REVIEW: Outside of the action, ‘Mortal Kombat’ falls flat

If there’s one thing this movie has in common with other “Mortal Kombat” films, it’s Raiden basically not fighting at all despite being a playable character in the games.

So this is another Hollywood shot at adapting the “Mortal Kombat” game franchise after an alright attempt in the 90s, which was followed by an abysmal sequel. In this latest attempt, the main character is Cole Young (Lewis Tan). Not actually featured in the game, Cole is an original character who gets by as a fighter who’s all about offense with very little defense.

One night after taking another loss, he’s attacked by a warrior well known as Sub Zero (Joe Taslim), who’s hunting him and other great fighters from Earth. Sub Zero is doing this under the orders of the evil Shang Tsung (Chin Han), who wants to eliminate Earth’s best warriors to carve an easy path to a 10th Mortal Kombat Tournament victory, which would allow his realm to conquer the world.

To fight back, Cole is brought into a group with other Earth fighters who are determined to stop Tsung.

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REVIEW: Not much good to report in ‘News of the World’

Before there was Dan Rather, Tom Brokaw, Peter Jennings and Walter Cronkite, there was Tom Hanks’s character Jefferson Kidd. At least according to “News of the World.”

In the film, directed by Paul Greengrass, Hanks plays Jefferson Kidd, a former Civil War captain who now earns a living by going from town-to-town in Texas to read the top headlines and stories from the nation’s largest newspapers. Set in 1870, reconstruction is still a work in progress, with some parts of Texas remaining dangerous while others are lined with United States soldiers.

The movie picks up with Kidd on his way to a different town for another news delivery. Along the way, he finds a young girl, Johanna (Helena Zengel), who’s near a broken down wagon. From paperwork in the wagon, Kidd learns that Johanna was taken in by a Native American tribe after the deaths of her parents, and that she was supposed to be taken to surviving family members in another part of the state. Kidd is then instructed by officials to take her to reunite with her family members, which is a tough, 400 mile journey.

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REVIEW: ‘Enola Holmes’ fails to entertain

Sherlock seems to always gets the spotlight in the Holmes family. This time, though, it’s shared with his siblings.

The result? It’s mixed.

The titular character in this film, played by Millie Bobby Brown, is the younger sister of the famous detective Sherlock (Henry Cavill). Enola, a teenager, has grown up in the countryside with her mother Eudoria (Helena Bonham Carter). However, one morning Enola wakes up and her mother is missing.

In response, Enola’s brothers Sherlock and Mycroft (Sam Claflin) are called in to investigate the situation and look after her. Deciding she can manage on her own, though, Enola decides to go to London and figure out the situation by herself. During her trip to London, Enola meets Tewkesbury (Louis Partridge), who’s dealing with his own family troubles.

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REVIEW: New Netflix film never reaches full ‘Power’

Super powers can be a fun thing in movies, but they need to have rules and, more importantly, they must make sense.

“Project Power, unfortunately, doesn’t have a good control on this aspect, or other film elements for that matter.

The film is set in New Orleans and takes place as a new drug is spreading through the city. Rather than giving people a high, though, this new drug causes people to have five minute bursts of super powers.

As the film goes on, the drug is shown to give different people unique powers, such as super strength or camouflage. The film follows a trio of characters mixed into the situation, a cop who’s using the drug himself to fight back named Frank (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), a former soldier ,Art (Jamie Foxx), who’s trying to limit its spread and a student, Robin (Dominique Fishback), who’s started dealing the substance.

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REVIEW: ‘The Old Guard’ flops despite strong premise

“The Old Guard” is a pretty accurate title because this film doesn’t offer many new tricks.

The movie stars Charlize Theron as Andy, an immortal woman who’s lived for centuries as a warrior. She is the leader of a group of immortal fighters who’ve come together as a group of mercenaries. The film picks up with the team getting hired by Copley (Chiwetel Ejiofor),  a man who’s heard of their skills in combat.

However, the group soon learns that they were set up by Copley, who wants to conduct research on the immortals as part of a pharmaceutical scheme. Meanwhile, Nile (KiKi Layne), a U.S. soldier in the Middle East, learns that she too is immortal and ends up joining the mercenaries in their work to evade Copley’s associates.

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REVIEW: ‘Artemis Fowl’ is atrocious

I’ve been doing this for nearly 12 years, and every so often there’s a movie so bad it tempts me to walk out of the theater or hit the stop button. “Artemis Fowl” has joined that club.

Ferdia Shaw plays the titular character Artemis Fowl (Jr.). He’s a certified child genius who still has to go to school for some reason, and lives at a mansion with his father, Artemis Fowl Sr., and his butler, Domovoi (Nonso Anozie).

One day, his father goes missing, and is blamed for stealing several priceless artifacts. Artemis soon learns that his father has also been kidnapped by a mysterious figure. The antagonist tells Fowl he has to get an artifact to get his dad back. As it turns out, a civilization of fantasy creatures including fairies also want the same artifact. As a result, Artemis needs to deal with both entities to save his father.

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