Director Adam McKay had a few comedies under his belt before hitting the award circuit in a major way with “The Big Short” in 2015. In that film, McKay took on the 2008 housing crisis and Great Recession with brilliant humor, while still exploring the serious subject matter. McKay tries to do the same thing here with “Vice,” but the results are much more mixed.
The movie is about the rise of former Vice President Dick Cheney (Christian Bale), who served alongside former President George W. Bush (Sam Rockwell) from 2001-2008. The picture explores how Cheney went from a Congressional aide, to a House member, then to having seats in the White House staff, and finally, assuming the vice presidential position. Over the course of its runtime, “Vice” shows Cheney’s relationship to his wife Lynne (Amy Adams), his daughters, and his political allies, such as Donald Rumsfeld (Steve Carell).
Continue reading “REVIEW: Inconsistencies are a detriment to ‘Vice’”
The life and times of Vincent Van Gogh are uniquely portrayed in this feature from director Julian Schnabel.
“At Eternity’s Gate” tells the story of Van Gogh (Willem Dafoe), picking up with him as a struggling artist in France and following his career when he lives in a smaller community.
Along with the work he did on the canvas, “Gate” also takes time to explore and address some of Van Gogh struggles with his mental illnesses.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘At Eternity’s Gate’ provides a meaningful vision of a great artist”
I really, really wanted to like this one more.
As the name implies, “Mary Queen of Scots” tells the story of Queen Mary of Scotland (Saoirse Ronan), who for much of her adult life, was a rival to England’s Queen Elizabeth (Margot Robbie). The film follows Mary returning to Scotland after some years away and assuming her responsibilities on the throne.
With time passing, Mary and her advisers see a legitimate claim to the English throne as well and decide to take action, with the idea of Mary replacing Elizabeth. Along with heritage, the situation is also driven by religion, with Mary being a Catholic and Elizabeth ruling as a Protestant.
Continue reading “REVIEW: Plot issues cause ‘Mary Queen of Scots’ to stumble”
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”
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”
Political capital, time, money and lives. All of these were spent and sacrificed to push mankind out of the atmosphere and travel to the Moon. In “First Man,” all of these sacrifices weigh on Neil Armstrong, played here by Ryan Gosling.
As the name and the main real life character implies, “First Man” is about the lead up and mission by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration to successfully land on the Moon. Director Damien Chazelle, known for his work helming “Whiplash” and “La La Land” takes audiences on a biographical tour this time around, documenting Armstrong’s training and following the astronaut’s journey to becoming the lead man on Apollo 11.
The picture covers both the continuous work at NASA, while also showcasing the lives of the agency’s workers in their home life. Specifically, the movie documents Armstrong’s relationship with his family, including his wife Janet (Claire Foy).
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘First Man’ provides incredible snapshots of history and humanity”
While the Elton John biopic “Rocketman” isn’t scheduled for release until summer 2019, a first look at the upcoming picture was still put out by Paramount Monday.
Continue reading “Monday Movie Report: First look at ‘Rocketman’”
Matt Damon has been brought in on a film project about the life of commodities trader Marc Rich.
According to Variety, Damon will star as Rich in the film, titled “The King of Oil.” The Universal Pictures project is being produced by John Krasinski, Variety reports, through his Sunday Night Productions.
Continue reading “Monday Movie Report: Matt Damon signs on for Marc Rich biopic”
A story that many in the United States and the world for that matter are familiar with gets another look in “I, Tonya.”
As the title teases, the movie follows the story of two-time Olympian Tonya Harding (Margot Robbie), whose career rose with a 1991 U.S. Figure Skating Championship and ended with a controversy revolving around an attack on her rival Nancy Kerrigan.
The picture details her early life of training under her strict and controlling mother LaVona (Allison Janney) to her time as a professional skater where she had a relationship, marriage and breakup with her husband Jeff (Sebastian Stan). Through both periods of her life, the film showcases Harding’s difficulties because of poverty and the people around her.
Continue reading “REVIEW: Robbie, Janney Are Sensational In ‘I Tonya’”
A man who seemed to carry the weight of the world on his shoulders at one point is explored in “Darkest Hour.”
The movie takes place in 1940 with the German military invading countries and pushing back the forces of Great Britain and France. With new leadership needed, Winston Churchill (Gary Oldman) is brought in as a Prime Minister who is ready and willing to defend the island nation.
As Churchill enters office, he faces a massive problem with German forces surrounding the British at Dunkirk. Meanwhile, at home, Churchill has to deal with politicians including Viscount Halifax (Stephen Dillane) and Neville Chamberlain (Ronald Pickup) pushing back against the new prime minister’s plan for war and opting to negotiate with Adolf Hitler.
Continue reading “REVIEW: Oldman’s Performance Energizes The Historical Drama In “Darkest Hour””