Movie Review: ROOM – terrific performances from Brie Larson and Jacob Tremblay, but I needed less of the first half of the movie and more of the second.

The human mind is a complex thing.  Where it resides is the great unfathomable mystery, and is as much a debate for philosophy as it is for science.  We will one day fundamentally change as a species once customizable DNA becomes commonplace, something which, as a transhumanist, I welcome.  But the body in comparison to the mind is simple.  A biological vehicle piloted by the human mind, the real “us”, it’s no more than a complex Lego set.  But the mind is subject to very subjective stimuli, from an astonishing array of sensory input to organic chemistry.  No two people are alike inside, behind the everyday screen we put up, showing people what we want to see.  It’s perhaps the most fragile part of us, easy to damage, hard to repair.

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Movie Review: A CURE FOR WELLNESS – what starts as an intriguing, Shutter Island type mystery, ends up a sloppy, overplotted mess.

I saw two movies this weekend, both undone by serious overplotting.  I’m reviewing A Cure For Wellness here, but I’ll get to The Mummy all in good time.  The difference between these movies is that The Mummy is mostly bad throughout, and for a number of reasons.  A Cure For Wellness doesn’t become bad overall, but the plotting ruins what starts as a good movie.

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Movie Review: SHUT IN – a good performance from Naomi Watts overshadowed by the spectacularly bad “WTF?” reveal.

Image result for shut in poster

If there’s one single thing about movie marketing I absolutely cannot stand, it’s the bait and switch.  It usually happens when either the studio knows they have a dog on their hands through test marketing, or they find themselves with a movie on their hands that defies a target market.  I remember there was a big stink from fans of the 2012 movie John Carter, based on the John Carter of Mars series of books by Edgar Rice Burroughs, because of a weak and ineffective marketing campaign.  The trouble here was with the movie, a wretched piece of badly written drivel.  When movies can spend close to $100 million alone on marketing, sometimes a movie is just so poor that the studio cuts its losses and declines to throw good money after bad.  An example of not knowing who to market to is the recent movie A Monster Calls, with an ad campaign that tried to appeal to the same crowd as those who loved The Iron Giant and The BFG.  Last night’s movie, Shut In, is a classic example of marketing bait and switch.

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Movie Review: THE BROOD (1979) – Cronenberg’s seminal horror movie goes a lot deeper than just “evil children”. Modern filmmakers could learn a lot.

thebrood

I get that it seems redundant to review old movies, but then again, “movie reviews” is a catch all term, right?  I probably won’t make a habit of this, but who knows!  Right now, it’s more of a thought exercise for me, having not seen this particular movie in about 20 years.  I felt that had put enough distance between myself and it so that even if it wasn’t exactly “new to me”, watching David Cronenberg’s 1979 move The Brood in 2016 might allow me to see it with a different set of sensibilities.  I know back then I didn’t so much absorb movies as I try to these days, I was more of a casual watcher.

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Movie Review: THE VOICES

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Few movies are so inconsistent in tone that I’m compelled to comment about that one aspect, but such is The Voices, staring Ryan Reynolds (Deadpool, Self/Less), Gemma Arterton (Byzantium), and Anna Kendrick (Up In The Air, Pitch Perfect).  I stumbled across this the other week, and was intrigued by the premise, and the fact it seemed like an odd choice for Reynolds, whom I consider a solid lead actor.  The poster itself sets up a quirky, offbeat black comedy, but like many posters that try to sell a different kind of product to the public, this one is grossly misleading.

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Movie Review: DARLING – Everything works in Mickey Keating’s best movie to date, with a terrific lead performance by Lauren Ashley Carter

Darling

I’m not exactly sure which came first of Mickey Keating’s Carnage Park and Darling, but I know they were filmed fairly close together, and are wildly different from each other.  It’s fair to speculate that while Keating’s still finding his feet, he has the potential to become a “name” director in a few years.

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Movie Review: GOODNIGHT MOMMY

goodnight-mommy-poster

Imagine my surprise when I discovered Goodnight Mommy was available to stream for free via Amazon Prime.  I’ve spent the last couple of weeks looking for a good, English-subtitled version, and suddenly, there it was.  No cash outlay, no rummaging through questionable torrents.  The movie’s been on my watch list since I saw the trailer back in November 2015, so last night I put aside the night’s plans and settled down to watch.

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