Movie Review: COLD MOON – cheaply made and mostly forgettable adaptation of a classic 80s horror novel

This is a movie I would have reviewed anyway, even if I hadn’t received a screener copy to review by the company promoting the movie, or the invitation to attend the LA premier at the Ahrya Fine Arts Center on Wilshire Blvd, and that’s because I remembered reading and enjoying the novel upon which its based – Cold Moon Over Babylon, by the late Michael McDowell, which is one of the books Stephen King recommends at the end of his non-fiction work Danse Macabre.  High praise, and I recall it being worthy.  The question on my mind was, would the movie adaptation be any good?

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Movie Review: THE BLACKCOAT’S DAUGHTER – as far as directorial debuts go, this is pretty striking, unfortunately, the reveal is a cheat.

Osgood (Oz) Perkins is a new name on the scene, but not an unfamiliar one.  He’s the son of Psycho star Anthony Perkins, so it’s fair to say that unlike other first time moviemakers a lifelong connection to the movie business ingrained within him some valuable moviemaking tips.  It shows here in his first movie, which is a taut, suspenseful indie horror, starring Emma Roberts (American Horror Story), with fine supporting work by Lucy Boynton and, in particular, Kiernan Shipka.  It’s well directed for sure, but the story itself depends on one particular conceit that doesn’t work,  It’s a giant black hole and for me, the entire movie collapsed into it.

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Movie Review: THE BOOK OF HENRY – the headlines are spot on. This movie is MST3K-awful, thanks to one of the worst screenplays in recent memory.

If it somehow seems unfair that so many people are piling on The Book Of Henry, I’m unashamed to say that not only is it completely fair, but it’s almost a civic duty to do so: the movie is absolutely awful.  And I don’t say that with any glee.  Most of the time, I’m angry when I have to give a bad review, because I genuinely love cinema, and it gives me no pleasure to rip a movie.  Some other critics take great pains to explain how terrible certain movies can be, but they do it with a great deal of panache and irony that it strikes me that if they were not turning their poisoned pens on movies it would be – and probably is – something else.  Me, I just get angry.

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Movie Review: CAPTURE KILL RELEASE – insultingly dumb, “shocking” found-footage indie horror that annoys more than it disturbs.

Ugh, expectation … it’s a cruel mistress.  Sometimes you get what you wanted, but most times once the thing you’re waiting for finally arrives, you think, “Man, I really hoped it would be better.”  And sometimes the reality is so badly out of sync with expectations, it’s almost wondrous.  My expectations for Trainspotting 2 were tempered by the fact that 21 years had passed since the beloved original movie, and that period encompassed a fair bit of change for me.  Capture Kill Release, on the other hand, showed up on my radar around early December 2016, and I finally got around to viewing it last night.  Talk about badly out of sync! This turned out to be one of the worst movies I’ve watched in recent years.  Knockout poster, though.

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Movie Review: THE WHOLE TRUTH – a mostly uninteresting courtroom drama with a twist! Unfortunately, that’s not so interesting either.

The Whole Truth is a curiosity to me, I have to say.  The courtroom drama, which stars Keanu Reeves (John Wick, The Matrix), Jim Belushi, Renee Zellweger, Gabriel Basso, and Gugu Mbatha-Raw (Dr. Who, and the San Junipero episode of Black Mirror, season 3), was directed by Courtney Hunt, whose sole movie to this point, Frozen River, garnered her an Academy nom for best original screenplay in 2008, and written by Hollywood veteran Nicholas Kazan, an Academy nominee in his own right for 1990’s Reversal of Fortune.  There are a number of reasons why this movie failed to engage me, the least of which was a super-late night viewing.

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