I can’t say that I ever expected Jack Black and Cate Blanchett to make a good onscreen duo, but here we are.
The two performers appear on the big screen in this fantasy film, directed by Eli Roth. While they headline the picture, though, the main character of the picture is Lewis, played by Owen Vaccaro. The film’s opening finds Lewis moving to Michigan to live with his uncle Jonathan (Black) after the death of his parents. Not long after Lewis moves in, he soon finds out that both his uncle and his uncle’s friend Florence (Blanchett) are warlocks.
As he begins to learn about the world of magic, Lewis not only finds out that sorcery exists, but that the house he’s living in contains an evil clock with nefarious designs.
Continue reading “REVIEW: Black and Blanchett elevate otherwise forgettable ‘House with Clocks’”
While I’m somewhat familiar with the “Peter Rabbit” books, I don’t have much of a memory of what they were like. So, I didn’t walk into this movie knowing the, um, lore. As a result, I walked in with a pretty fresh mind and came out of the theater somewhat pleasantly surprised.
As the title suggests, the movie follows the titular character Peter Rabbit, voiced here by James Corden. A mischief maker, Peter often finds himself getting into trouble with the old Mr. McGregor. This usually happens when Peter steals veggies from McGregor’s garden, with help from his sisters and cousin.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Peter Rabbit’ Is A Good Weekend Matinee Pick For The Family”
I’m not usually a stickler for 100 percent historical accuracy, but even I have to admit that “The Greatest Showman” takes a battle axe to P.T. Barnum’s true story.
The film tells the story of how Barnum (Hugh Jackman) went from a poor boy coming from nothing to a well-known showman who creates entertainment via circus acts. It doesn’t just do this in any ordinary manner, though. Instead, the film goes into full musical mode right off the bat and never lets up.
As the movie goes on, it explores Barnum trying to balance his family life with his wife Charity (Michelle Williams) and his business, which he runs with help from his partner Phillip (Zac Efron).
Continue reading “REVIEW: Catchy Songs Don’t Save Rushed Story In ‘Greatest Showman’”
When it comes to musicals, Pixar has usually left the genre to its counterpart Disney Animation Studios. With its latest endeavor, though, Pixar has taken a page out of the Mouse House’s playbook, creating a musical experience with “Coco.”
Keep in mind, “Coco” isn’t a traditional animated musical. However, it’s a movie very much about music and includes numerous songs.
The movie’s protagonist is Miguel (Anthony Gonzalez), a boy who dreams of becoming a singer and guitarist like his idol, Ernesto de la Cruz (Benjamin Bratt). His family, though, is completely against music and musicians of any sort, finding it to be a curse on their family that began generations ago.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Coco’ Works Thanks To Heartfelt Story About Family, Memorable Music”
I consider myself quite a bit of an animation fan, so I was fairly disappointed with the recently released “Leap!”
The film focuses on a young orphan girl named Felicie (Elle Fanning), who’s attempting to achieve her dream of being a famous ballet dancer in Paris. With the help of her best friend Victor (Dane DeHaan), the two manage to get away from the orphanage and make it to the City of Lights.
Felicie eventually makes it to the ballet dance school and there she meets a former dancer named Odette (Carly Rae Jepsen), who decides to help her get a spot in the intense learning environment. Not only does Felicie have to deal with a rough dance education, though, she also ends up having a rival with another young dancer named Camille (Maddie Ziegler).
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Leap!’ Held Back By Formulaic Story, Weak Characters”
The 1991 animated feature “Beauty and the Beast” was honored with an Academy Awards Best Picture nomination. Disney’s live action version released this weekend, though, will likely not get the same.
Continue reading “REVIEW: New ‘Beauty And The Beast’ Will Make You Want To Watch The Original”
After seven books and eight movies, the “Harry Potter” franchise seemingly came to a close in 2011. The door to that universe was reopened last weekend, though, with the prequel “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.”
However, this flick didn’t quite capture the passion, wonder and most of all storytelling ability that its predecessors did.
The film follows the character Newt (Eddie Redmayne) a researcher and writer who travels the world studying and protecting various beasts of the magical world. The movie picks up as his travels bring him to the United States.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Fantastic Beasts’ Offers Some Excitement But Not Much Else”
It’s nice to see something with the name Trolls and have it not be related to the internet in any way.
Instead, it’s the latest animated feature to hit the big screen and it’s based off the old toys with wild hair. As the name suggests, the film tells the story of Trolls, a race of happy-go-lucky beings who live in harmony, that is when they’re not under attack from the Bergens, giant creatures who only find joy from eating trolls.
Fortunately, at the film’s outset, the Trolls haven’t had to deal with the Bergens for two decades. One day they’re discovered, though, and a number of Trolls are captured by a vicious Bergen Chef. As a result, the Trolls Princess Poppy (Anna Kendrick) and a rather grumpy Troll named Branch (Justin Timberlake) go on a rescue mission/adventure.
Continue reading “REVIEW: Musical Scenes Are Greatest Feature Of ‘Trolls’ Movie”
Disney’s latest strategy of making new live action films based off old properties continued this weekend with “Pete’s Dragon.”
Like the 1977 movie, “Pete’s Dragon” follows the titular character, played by Oakes Fegley, who is orphaned in the middle of a vast forest at age 5. The film’s story picks up about six years later when Pete, and his dragon Elliot, too, start to be noticed by other people as the forestry industry goes further into the woods.
This leads to Pete eventually meeting Grace (Bryce Dallas Howard), who starts to believe the boy’s tales about a dragon as her own father Meacham (Robert Redford) also claimed to have seen one.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Pete’s Dragon’ Remake Is A Heartwarming Family Experience”
It just never ends.
In the latest installment of the long running “Ice Age” series, the sabertooth squirrel Scrat causes a chain of events that sends an asteroid toward Earth. As this is happening, there’s a bit of drama with the Ice Age crew.
Peaches (Keke Palmer), the daughter of Manny (Ray Romano) and Ellie (Queen Latifah), is planning to get married to her fiance Julian (Adam Devine) and in the process wants to leave home. So not only do the parents have to worry about the asteroid, they also have to worry about their kid leaving.
This movie feels like one of the most manufactured pieces of media that I’ve ever seen. The movie’s main conflict, the child wanting to leave home with a guy that the dad doesn’t like, is so incredibly generic and “Collision Course” doesn’t do anything new with it.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Collision Course’ Shows That ‘Ice Age’ Series Is On Life Support”