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.

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

Advertisements

Movie Review: HOLMES AND WATSON – an unfunny debacle that outstays its welcome within minutes.

I’m not the world’s biggest fan of Sherlock Holmes, but I’ve enjoyed a few adaptations of the character over the years.  I won’t regurgitate these musings, but they can be found in my review of the Ian McKellen movie Mr. Holmes, a movie which is as untraditional in its approach to the world’s most famous literary detective as this latest version, a buddy comedy starring Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly – only better.

Continue reading “Movie Review: HOLMES AND WATSON – an unfunny debacle that outstays its welcome within minutes.”

Movie Review: WONDER WOMAN – Gal Gadot’s fine turn as the titular heroine prevents the movie from complete mediocrity, but only just.

I don’t want to say that Wonder Woman is a politicized movie, but for some odd reason, it’s become a lightning rod for people on both sides of the gender divide.  I suppose it’s inevitable in this sociopolitical climate that any genre movie with a lead female character is going to become this year’s feminist icon – I remember the massively overblown praise for Mad Max: Fury Road, as an “important” feminist action movie (I saw a movie with that title, but I don’t recall that version), and even the mostly awful Ghostbusters remake was hailed for pretty much the same thing.  Well, now it’s Wonder Woman’s turn, and when Marvel eventually get around to toplining Brie Larson as Captain Marvel, the same plaudits will be flung around then too.

Continue reading “Movie Review: WONDER WOMAN – Gal Gadot’s fine turn as the titular heroine prevents the movie from complete mediocrity, but only just.”

AT HOME WITH MONSTERS – Guillermo Del Toro’s traveling exhibition of personal memorabilia is a treat for horror buffs.

For those who don’t know, Mexican writer/director Guillermo Del Toro isn’t just active in the horror and fantasy genres, he’s also a fan of them like you and me, and has spent years assembling an enviable collection of props, personal drawing, note, and sketches, and other assorted memorabilia, at his home in the LA burbs, which he calls “Bleak House”.  The exhibition is scheduled to only make three stops in the US, before heading to Mexico for the final setup.  Here I’m fortunate to live in the Minneapolis/St Paul, where the exhibition is on display at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts until the end of May, and went to see it last Friday with my wife and daughter.  Del Toro is a real hit and miss director for me.  Of all his work, the only movies of his I’ve truly loved are The Devil’s Backbone, and Pan’s Labyrinth.  His Hollywood movies, such as the Hellboy movies, and Pacific Rim leave me utterly cold.  A professed fan of H.P. Lovecraft (my own personal idol when it comes to writing), he’s long expressed a desire to film an adaptation of arguably Lovecraft’s greatest work, At The Mountains Of Madness – a project that had, at one point, Tom Cruise attached to star.  I still hope Del Toro can get it made – he may be the only name filmmaker out there who can do justice to the material.

Continue reading “AT HOME WITH MONSTERS – Guillermo Del Toro’s traveling exhibition of personal memorabilia is a treat for horror buffs.”