In July I founded the Minnesota Film Critics Alliance and one of the best parts of doing so has been connecting with really talented people.
One of them is Ruth Maramis, who reviews films at FlixChatter. Her movie-related work doesn’t end there, though.
Maramis was also an executive producer and the writer for the short film “Hearts Want.” Since its release, the picture has picked up recognition from several film festivals.
Continue reading “A Minnesota-made movie: ‘Hearts Want’ review”
OK, I can handle the teenage angst, but when pseudo-intellectual babble is poured on top, it becomes too much.
“Chemical Hearts” centers on the character Henry (Austin Abrams), a senior who becomes the editor of the school newspaper in his final year. As the fall semester gets started, he meets a new student, Grace (Lili Reinhart), who joins the newspaper team.
Grace walks with a cane, as she has an apparent leg injury and keeps to herself for the most part. Henry, though, wants to get to know her and as time goes on, begins to form a relationship with Grace. However, she’s still dealing with trauma from an event in her past.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Chemical Hearts’ hindered by screenplay”
Parenthood and the process of getting there has been the subject of comedies for quite some time and some, like “Knocked Up,” can be big hits.
However, these types of films usually require a balanced approach. Unfortunately, “Babysplitters” is too all over the place.
The movie focuses on the married couple Jeff (Danny Pudi) and Sarah (Emily Chang). The two have a good relationship, but they somewhat disagree on the prospect of having children.
Meanwhile, their friends Don (Eddie Alfano) and Taylor (Maiara Walsh) are having the same conversations. After having some discussions all together, they come up with a plan of sharing one baby, but their plan has complications.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Babysplitters’ is mostly abysmal”
I’m not exactly a person who’s easily distracted. However, the song “Radioactive” by Imagine Dragons kept making its way in my head during this movie.
Starring Rosamund Pike, “Radioactive” tell the story of Polish scientist Marie Curie, who accomplished her groundbreaking work in France. The movie depicts her relationship with her husband Pierre (Sam Riley), as well as their discoveries of the elements polonium and radium.
As the movie progresses, Curie’s life continues to be documented, and both the negative and positive impacts of radioactivity are shown. From this, the audience is able to learn how Curie’s life work went hand in hand with her relationships.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Radioactive’ drags despite strong Pike performance”
“Cold War” is a movie about trying to escape, but it’s certainly not escapist entertainment.
The picture tells the story of a singer, Zula (Joanna Kulig), and a composer, Wiktor (Tomasz Kot). Zula and Wiktor find themselves as part of a government funded music group in Poland, which is tasked with giving pro-Stalin performances.
The two soon find themselves in a romance, but they’re also in the Soviet Union during the Cold War, making things difficult. As a result, the two consider fleeing Poland. However, the power of the government and life in general throw a lot of issues at the couple.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Cold War’ is a captivating romantic drama”
Like the very paintings featured in this movie, “Portrait of a Lady on Fire” is a true work of art.
Noemie Merlant portrays Marianne in this film, a young woman who arrives in a secluded area of France to work on a portrait for a family. Marianne soon learns that a woman, (played by Valeria Golino and only known as The Countess), her employer, wants a portrait of her daughter Heloise (Adele Haenel), who’s arranged to be married.
Heloise, though, has no interest in going through with the marriage and refuses to pose for a portrait. In an effort to connect with her, Marianne begins to take walks in the scenic coastal areas of France with Heloise and the two begin to connect. From there, the relationship only grows as the two understand each other more and a romance blossoms.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Portrait of a Lady on Fire’ burns bright with quality”
“Emma” is a novel rich enough to spawn several on-screen adaptations, but unfortunately, the latest is rather dry.
Anya Taylor Joy plays the titular character here. A wealthy young woman in England, Emma has a reputation as a matchmaker. The movie picks up with her starting a friendship with Harriet Smith (Mia Goth), and eventually, she decides to try and set her up with one of the local suitors.
At the same time, Emma herself is looking at starting her own relationship with someone. However, some of her previous actions make the process somewhat tricky.
Continue reading “REVIEW: Latest ‘Emma’ adaptation is a stilted experience”
Director Sebastian Lelio had some experience going into this project, since “Gloria Bell” is actually a remake of his own 2013 Chilean film “Gloria.”
Gloria, played in the American version by Julianne Moore, is a woman who frequents disco dance clubs in Los Angeles on a regular basis. Having been divorced for about a decade, Gloria visits the clubs and mingles with some of the guys there, with the hope of maybe sparking a new relationship in mind.
During one of her outings, she meets Arnold (John Turturro), another divorcee who’s also looking for a new relationship. The two hit it off and begin dating each other. However, they find out that they might not be the most perfect match.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Gloria Bell’ glows thanks to Julianne Moore”
This is a series called “Best of the Decade.” It’s a list including 10 movies that I found to be the best in a specific genre from 2010-2019.
Several great romantic relationships were brought to the big screen over the past decade, with some getting more attention than others. Here were my favorites.
Continue reading “Best of the Decade: Romance”
An Oscar and Golden Globe winning director, a writer with several charming hits, along with a fantastic concept ripe for all sorts of possibilities. On paper, “Yesterday” looked like a slam dunk, which makes it a total shame that it turned out so poorly.
The movie follows a struggling singer named Jack Malik (Himesh Patel), who lives day-to-day playing small gigs with help from his manager Ellie (Lily James). Getting fed up with his lack of success and his dead-end job, Jack considers leaving music all together.
However, during one bike ride home, Jack is hit by a bus at the exact same moment a blackout occurs worldwide. When he wakes up and recovers from his injuries, he comes to find himself in a world where the Beatles never became a band and their music does not exist in the pop culture landscape. Seeing an opportunity, Jack starts singing the songs and claims credit for the work, which of course leads him to his own fair share of fame.
Continue reading “REVIEW: One can just move on to tomorrow, because ‘Yesterday’ doesn’t offer much”