Soho looks like a pretty fun place to visit in London, but if the main character in this movie is around, things might get a little to intense.
This film, directed and co-written by Edgar Wright, stars Thomasin McKenzie as Eloise. The young woman has recently moved from the country-side to a section of London to earn a degree in fashion. Immediately, Eloise finds herself fed up with her partying dorm roommate and decides to move into an apartment at an older building.
While it seems perfect at first, Eloise soon finds herself having visions of another young woman, named Sandie (Anya Taylor-Joy), who lived in the same apartment and wanted to be a lounge singer during the 1960s. While the visions start off fascinating, they soon unveil a dark mystery from the past.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Last Night in Soho’ sadly falters after strong start”
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.
Continue reading “REVIEW: Underneath the sheen of great visuals, ‘Dune’ is a dull experience”
Ridley Scott’s historical epics have been rather disappointing, with 2014’s “Exodus: Gods and Kings” and 2010’s “Robin Hood” missing the mark.
Sadly, Scott’s latest effort, “The Last Duel,” doesn’t get in the win column.
“The Last Duel” is set in France during the 1300s and follows three characters, two of them being the knight Jean de Carrouges (Matt Damon) and the squire Jacques Le Gris (Adam Driver), who served on the battlefield together. The third lead character is Marguerite de Carrouges (Jodie Comer), Jean’s wife.
As fellow warriors on the battlefield, Jean and Jacques not only have respect between each other, but a friendship as well. The friendship begins to strain, though, as Jacques begins enforcing rules set by the local Count Pierre d’Alencon (Ben Affleck), which Jean finds unfair. The situation reaches a boiling point when Marguerite accuses Jacques of rape. As a result, the two warriors are set on a path toward a deadly showdown.
Continue reading “REVIEW: Scott’s ‘Last Duel’ is a dull, callous film”
This biopic starts by showing Tammy Faye’s youth, and she just happened to share the hometown of yours truly.
Before her career as a television evangelist, this film shows Tammy (Jessica Chastain) growing up in the small northern Minnesota town International Falls (Go Broncos). From an early age, Tammy loves the energy and music of the church and it leads her to attending North Central Bible College in Minneapolis.
There, she meets Jim Bakker (Andrew Garfield). The two quickly fall in love and soon get married. Rather than continue the college route, the two decide to be preachers on the road. Their talent soon get them picked up on TV and from there, build their own media empire. Unfortunately, it’s all too good to be true for the Bakkers.
Continue reading “REVIEW: By the numbers biopic about Tammy Faye salvaged by cast”
Clint Eastwood is once again sporting a cowboy hat in his latest movie, but this one doesn’t take place in the old west.
In “Cry Macho,” Eastwood portrays Mike Milo, a retired rodeo star and horse breeder who was just cut from his job. His former boss Howard Polk (Dwight Yoakam) hires him for a different job at the movie’s outset, though.
Polk’s son, Rafo (Eduardo Minett) lives in Mexico and is allegedly being abused. Mike’s job is to bring Rafo back to the United States, so the father and son can reunite. While reluctant, Mike takes the job, meets Rafo and the two go on a journey from Mexico City to the U.S. border.
Continue reading “REVIEW: Eastwood’s ‘Cry Macho’ is a misfire”
Paul Schrader is back with another pessimistic film that earns a positive score.
Oscar Isaac stars as William Tell in “The Card Counter,” a man who after serving a prison sentence, lives on the road traveling from casino to casino. Tell is able to count cards and is strong poker player, but he never tries to make more than he needs to survive. It soon becomes clear that he’s troubled by something in his past.
Tell’s life begins to change, though, when he meets Cirk (Tye Sheridan), the college-age son of a soldier he knew while serving. Around the same time, he meets a woman named La Linda, who convinces him to begin playing professionally under her management.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘The Card Counter’ is a terrific slow-burn in a fast setting”
For many Americans who lost loved ones on September 11, the impacts were long lasting, partially because of the ensuing financial matters.
In “Worth,” audiences are shown the government program set up to provide monetary support to those families.
In this film based on a true story, Michael Keaton stars as Ken Feinberg. A DC lawyer, Feinberg volunteers to helm a government program designed to provide funding to families who lost loved ones in the attacks, as well as survivors.
As part of the program, Feinberg and his team form an algorithm, determining how many dollars each family is set to receive. However, the algorithm is met with criticism for how it appears to value each life differently based on income.
The main criticism is driven by a widow-turned-activist, Charles (Stanley Tucci), who lost his wife in the attacks. The film follows how the two try to resolve their differences and improve the program.
Continue reading “REVIEW: Pros outweigh cons with 9/11 drama ‘Worth’”
There are some movies where the execution of an ending can be so integral that it can make or break the feature.
That’s the case with “The Night House,” and not in a good way.
Rebecca Hall plays Beth in this thriller, a high school teacher who recently lost her husband to suicide. Beth is trying to move on from the tragedy, but she continues to reside at the home her husband, Owen (Evan Jonigkeit), built on the lake, which leaves her with constant reminders.
Those reminders begin to manifest as visions for Beth, who begins to see frightening things related to her late husband in the midnight hours. Because of what she sees in the night, she begins looking into whether her husband had a secret life or not.
Continue reading “REVIEW: Poor ending negates potential of ‘Night House’”
Sometimes, modern horror sequels to older properties can be massive disappointments, such as 2013’s “Texas Chainsaw.”
Fortunately, that’s not the case with the new “Candyman,” penned by Jordan Peele.
This film serves as a sequel to the original “Candyman” from 1992. This time around, the protagonist is Anthony McCoy (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II), an artist living in Chicago with his girlfriend Brianna (Teyonah Parris). Finding himself in artist block territory lately, McCoy decides to visit a northern Chicago housing project for inspiration.
While there, he meets a local named William (Colman Domingo), who tells McCoy the legend of the Candyman spirit. The legend ends up being a spark for McCoy who begins making art based on Candyman. However, his spark of creativity ends up reigniting the old Candyman spirit itself.
Continue reading “REVIEW: Compelling and creepy ‘Candyman’ is a success”
Aretha Franklin was a powerful force in music and Civil Rights, and this movie certainly touches on both of those aspects.
One just wishes the quality of the film had been above that of a standard biopic.
“Respect” mainly follows Franklin’s (Jennifer Hudson) childhood and roughly the first 10 to 15 years of her career. The film opens with Franklin losing her mother and the impact the death leaves on her.
From there, it follows how music helped Franklin open up again after her mother’s death. Then, the picture focuses on how Franklin went from a lead singer at her father’s (Forest Whitaker) church to a struggling singer, and then finally breaking through to success.
Continue reading “REVIEW: Hudson’s stunning performance not enough to fully salvage generic ‘Respect’”