Movie Review: PERSONAL SHOPPER – Kristen Stewart’s performance elevates this supernatural-tinged “American abroad” drama about grief and loss..

I can’t really think of many actors whose name inspires sight-unseen mockery and ridicule than Kristen Stewart.  Granted, these feelings are most commonly expressed by trolls from the safety of their keyboards, so I take these with a bucket of salt.  Of course, the same vitriol is directed at Robert Pattinson so you know the common thread here: the Twilight series, where they played Bella Swan and Edward Cullen respectively.  I haven’t seen any movies n this series, so my exposure to Stewart is pretty limited, but based on what I have seen, I’ve nothing against her, and in Personal Shopper she acquits herself quite well as the lead character.

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Movie Review: POSSUM – If you’re going to create a feature from a short story, be prepared to add material. If you don’t, you end up with this.

In the end credit roll for Matthew Holness’s Possum, you see in the fine print that it was based on his short story of the same name, published in the anthology The New Uncanny: Tales of Unease.  Weird that the source material would be buried in the credits and not shown during opening titles, as it is in most cases.  I haven’t read the short story but I’m going to track it down now that I’ve seen the movie.  I suspect it’s not going to be all that different from the movie, because even though it has a running time of an hour and a half, there’s perhaps only about half an hour of story.

Continue reading “Movie Review: POSSUM – If you’re going to create a feature from a short story, be prepared to add material. If you don’t, you end up with this.”

Movie Review: ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD – Not even close to Tarantino and DiCaprio’s best work. but Pitt is outstanding.

I’m a big fan of Quentin Tarantino’s work.  Ever since Reservoir Dogs I was hooked.  He was a breath of fresh air on the movie scene which was, at that point, struggling to define itself for the new decade.  I consider both this movie and Pulp Fiction as two of the ’90s most important movies because of the seismic effect they had on the industry.  The ’90s was a decade of great cultural change, and Tarantino was a big part of that.  In 1997, I was fortunate enough to play the role of Mr. Pink in a stage production of Reservoir Dogs, and preparing for the role gave me an even greater appreciation for Tarantino’s ear for dialogue.  It’s not real, but he sure makes it sound like it should be.

Continue reading “Movie Review: ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD – Not even close to Tarantino and DiCaprio’s best work. but Pitt is outstanding.”

Movie Review: GREEN BOOK – Mortenson and Ali give life to the movie, but the story plays it safe

Green Book is one of those movies that are so often described as the “feel-good movie of the year!” in marketing blurbs, and to me that generally describes something that’s wholesome to its core, generally involving good people doing good things (Forrest Gump), or mean people finally unlocking their inner good selves after learning some life lessons (Scrooge from A Christmas Carol).  Green Book doesn’t flip the script here, nor does it make any kind of valiant attempt to disguise its lack of ambition.  With this approach you sometimes end up with something closer in spirit to a Lifetime TV movie, but sometimes the talent involved can elevate the material, and that’s what saved Green Book for me.

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MOVIE REVIEW: MIDSOMMAR had the potential to be a terrific horror movie, but some unfortunate decisions towards the end reduced its power.

I was a fan of 2017’s Hereditary, unexpectedly so, considering I actually mocked the trailer when I first saw it.  I think I decided to watch it only because I’d heard it was worth watching, and while I saw a movie full of flaws – some pretty bad ones too – I was hugely impressed by the ending, which I now consider one of the greatest in horror.  This time around, Ari Aster’s second movie Midsommar is almost a reverse of that, where the ending threatened to undo what I liked about the movie.

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Movie Review: BRIGHTBURN – how they managed to make this horror movie take on Superboy is beyond me – but I loved it

While I’m a sucker for the Marvel movies, my personal favourite movie about superhumans is 2012’s Chronicle, a movie that appeals to the side of me that sees the crossover potential of the superhuman in fiction, and not keep it limited to the kind of material that’s been pounding the cinemas for decades now, and now Brightburn, a modestly made indie movie produced by Guardians of the Galaxy‘s James Gunn has cemented itself right by it.

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Movie Review: SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME a serviceable addition to Marvel’s growing list of franchise pics, but nothing more than that.

It’s hard to believe, but as of this year’s Avengers: Endgame, Tom Holland has donned the spider-suit in more movies than any other actor, and it’s only been three years since his first appearance in Captain America: Civil War!  To my knowledge, only Nicholas Hammond has played the character more than him.  This time around, it’s in his second solo outing, subtitled Far From Home.

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