REVIEW: ‘Till Death’ delivers with superb suspense

Director S.K. Dale makes his feature film debut with “Till Death,” and it’s a great first effort.

Megan Fox stars as Emma in “Till Death,” a woman whose marriage to her husband Mark (Eoin Macken) has been deteriorating. On their anniversary, though, it seems like Mark wants to patch things up. Unfortunately, the morning after, it turns out not to be the case.

Mark handcuffs himself to Emma and because of skeletons in his closet, shoots himself. It turns out this is the first part of a larger revenge plot against Emma for an affair. Now, Emma must survive against two hired men trying to get Mark’s fortune, one of whom she knows from an incident in her past.

Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Till Death’ delivers with superb suspense”

REVIEW: ‘The Tomorrow War’ weakened by convoluted concept

Sometimes you come across a movie where you ask “what the hell did I just watch?” when it gets done.

“The Tomorrow War” is one of those flicks.

The movie follows Dan Forester (Chris Pratt), a family man and retired soldier-turned school teacher in the year 2022. The story starts when the family watches a group of soldiers walk out of a portal on live TV. The soldiers inform those watching at home like the Foresters that they’re from the year 2051 where a massive war is taking place against aliens, and it’s not going well.

In order to push back against this threat, humanity developed a time bridge back to 2022 in order to get more fighters. The present day leaders agree to start a draft to send soldiers to the future and Forester ends up getting sent back into combat.

Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘The Tomorrow War’ weakened by convoluted concept”

REVIEW: Despite problems, ‘Mighty Orphans’ still cross the goal line for the win

I guess now I know who to thank for the high scoring Big 12 games on Saturdays.

Luke Wilson is Coach Rusty Russell in “12 Mighty Orphans.” As the name implies, the movie centers on a group of orphans who live at a Texas home for children and teenagers without families. Sadly, their home has seen better days and one of the educators, Frank (Wayne Knight), mistreats the students.

However, their fortunes begin to change when Russell arrives at the school in the midst of the Great Depression, along with his wife Juanita (Vinessa). On top of both Russells being teachers, Rusty also has experience as a football coach. He decides to apply that and forms a team. As orphans, though, the unit has to fight for respect both on and off the field.

Continue reading “REVIEW: Despite problems, ‘Mighty Orphans’ still cross the goal line for the win”

REVIEW: Get in the theater for ‘In the Heights’

“In the Heights” is an appropriate name for this film and the stage production its based on.

Not only because it takes place in New York City’s Washington Heights neighborhood, but also because it’s an experience that earns high scores.

The film is set in a Latin community and follows several characters, but the main focus is on Usnavi (Anthony Ramos), a bodega owner who dreams of reopening his late father’s beachside business in the Dominican Republic. One of the regular customers to Usnavi’s shop is Vanessa (Melissa Barrera), a young woman working at a salon who wants to pursue a career in fashion.

Early in the film, Usnavi and Vanessa meet up with Nina (Leslie Grace), a Stanford University student whose father owns a taxi company. That company is where Benny (Corey Hawkins), who has relationship history with Nina, works. The four of them spend time with others in the neighborhood and try to navigate their futures during a heat wave across New York City.

Continue reading “REVIEW: Get in the theater for ‘In the Heights’”

REVIEW: ‘Dream Horse’ won’t be in award races, but it can still please viewers

The races featured in “Dream Horse” aren’t related to the American Triple Crown competitions, but it still feels like the right time to watch this flick.

“Dream Horse” takes place in a small town in Wales and revolves around a group of residents who decide to invest in a racing thoroughbred. Mainly, the movie follows Jan (Toni Collette), the woman who comes up with the idea and convinces other community members to pitch in.

Together, they breed a horse and because it was a group of residents coming aligning for a cause, they name it Dream Alliance. The proposal initially seems like a risky gamble until Dream Alliance becomes a success on the track.

Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Dream Horse’ won’t be in award races, but it can still please viewers”

REVIEW: ‘Cruella’ constricted by tonal imbalance

Hero. Antihero. Villain. Can a protagonist be all three? “Cruella” attempts to find out.

Emma Stone stars as Estella in this supposed prequel to the “101 Dalmatians” story. Estella, born with white and black hair, is a girl who was orphaned at a young age when her mother fell from a balcony during a party. Following the death, Estella finds her way to London and meets Jasper and Horace. The three become friends and pull schemes together to make money in order to survive.

Eventually, though, Estella gets her chance to leave her life of pick-pocketing and get her dream job as a fashion designer. Eventually, she gets to work for London’s top fashion individual, who simply goes by The Baroness (Emma Thompson). The more she works there, though, the more Estella finds reason to let out her true self, Cruella, and conquer the fashion world.

Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Cruella’ constricted by tonal imbalance”

REVIEW: ‘Together Together’ triumphs with sweet, funny relationship

An odd couple is usually reliable to make a comedy movie work, and that’s certainly the case with “Together Together.”

The two main characters, Anna (Patti Harrison) and Matt (Ed Helms) aren’t a romantic couple, but instead have another element bringing them together. Matt, who’s in his 40s, is looking to become a father and Anna, in her late 20s, was selected as the surrogate mother.

The movie takes place over the course of the pregnancy, following how Anna wants to keep more of a distance, while Matt is dedicated to helping her with the pregnancy for the betterment of his child and Anna herself.

Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Together Together’ triumphs with sweet, funny relationship”

REVIEW: Drama in ‘Four Good Days’ elevated by lead actresses

Four days can whiz by in an average work week, but as this film clearly shows, sometimes it can be an eternity.

Mila Kunis plays Molly in “Four Good Days,” a woman addicted to heroin who’s hit rock bottom. Looking for an attempt to get sober, Molly turns to her mother, Deb (Glenn Close), who’s mostly cut ties with her daughter.

It soon comes to light that Molly has attempted to do this before and eventually fell through each time, creating a distrust between her and Deb. However, Deb learns that Molly can get an injection that will remove the ability for her to get high. To get the injection, though, Molly must stay sober for four straight days.

Continue reading “REVIEW: Drama in ‘Four Good Days’ elevated by lead actresses”

REVIEW: ‘Another Round’ finely captures society’s link with alcohol

The social enjoyment of having drinks among friends along with the negative impacts of alcohol are both explored nicely in this 2020 foreign film.

A movie from Denmark, “Another Round” follows four friends: Martin (Mads Mikkelsen), Tommy (Thomas Bo Larsen), Nikolaj (Magnus Millang) and Peter (Lars Ranthe). All of them are middle-aged high school teachers who have settled down.

However, for their own reasons, they all appear to be stuck in a bit of a rut in their lives. Soon after celebrating Martin’s birthday, the four come across a university study that states humans have a blood alcohol level that is actually too low. With that in mind, they decide to put the study to the test and start having a few drinks during the day to see if they’ll function better.

Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Another Round’ finely captures society’s link with alcohol”

REVIEW: ‘French Exit’ is a dramedy failure

Academy Award nominees Michelle Pfeiffer and Lucas Hedges are featured prominently in “French Exit,” yet their presence isn’t enough to rescue this misfire.

In “French Exit,” Pfeiffer plays Frances, a widow¬† and New York socialite who has spent most of the money left behind after the death of her husband. Hedges, meanwhile, plays Malcolm, Frances’ son who is intending to marry his girlfriend, Susan (Imogen Poots).

With her resources dwindling, Frances decides to move to an apartment in France with her son and navigate what she should do next with her life. While the plan throws a wrench in Malcolm’s wedding dreams, he decides to go along with his mother’s move. Upon reaching France, the duo begin meeting several new characters who become involved in their lives.

Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘French Exit’ is a dramedy failure”