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Entries in Reviews (624)

Tuesday
Aug142018

Review: "Crazy Rich Asians"

by Chris Feil

Crazy Rich Asians feels like something sterling from the past, the kind of wholly satisfying and rapturous romantic comedy that we bemoan is missing from the multiplex. Director Jon M. Chu’s loving embrace of the genre pulls its influences from across the decades, infusing Doris Day/Rock Hudson rompiness with the cutting character detail of The Devil Wears Prada. It’s a high mark that the film clears and safely so, sliding with ease onto a shelf next to your rewatchable favorites - and it’s been a minute since something new joined the ranks.

The film’s massive ensemble is led by Constance Wu as Rachel Chu, a self-made economics professor set for her fated meeting with the overseas family of her charming boyfriend Nick Young, played by a painfully dashing Henry Golding. Unbeknownst to Rachel, this family wedding getaway is about to thrust her center stage in front of one of the wealthiest families in Singapore. And all of the generational expectations and deceptive opulence that entails...

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Friday
Aug102018

Review: The Meg

by Chris Feil

Summer is for sharks at the multiplex and 2018 is no different. Recent highs include Blake Lively’s solo survival rendezvous with The Shallows and the lows have been last year’s spiteful low-fi 47 Meters Down. This year we get the highest concept and machoest of them all with The Meg, an amalgam of batshit tidied up into the most convincing guano bowl it can muster. But that’s fine, because witless mayhem is why you showed up in the first place. For something insane however, it isn't the whole hog disasterpiece of your schadenfreude fantasies.

And what do the shark invested waters have in store this time? Basically... a bigger shark. Consider it Mega-Shark Vs. Giant Sourpuss because we've got noted mean mugger Jason Statham at the head of this amusement ride...

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Thursday
Aug022018

Review: "Christopher Robin"

by Chris Feil

Off in the Hundred Acre Wood, Winnie the Pooh and friends haven’t changed all that much over the decades. Our Christopher Robin however is all grown up in the real world, having lost his father at a young age before fighting in the war and never returning to visit his childhood daydream oasis. Like the rest of us, he’s grown rigid in adulthood while the rest of the beloved characters remain made of plush.

With Ewan McGregor taking on the adult Christopher, his namesake film presents something as soft as his friends in both its demeanor and its substance. Unlike its recent live action Disney brethren, this film follows its own narrative and is free to explore the characters as it sees fit. And yet it chooses the most obvious one, turning Christopher into an overworked businessman devoting more of his energy to his job than his wife and daughter. Send in Pooh’s implacable chill to play savior to his once kneesocked companion’s soul.

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Friday
Jul272018

Review Catch-up: Eighth Grade, Ant-Man and the Wasp, etc...

by Nathaniel R

A few recent major pictures we didn't post full reviews on. Oops. Let's take them in order of preference...

Eighth Grade (Bo Burnham)
Synopsis: A slice of life in middle school as an introverted teenager with an unwatched YouTube channel tries to survive eighth grade. 
Capsule: Such is the miracle of this movie that I felt pangs of recognition all throughout it even though I am basically the dad's age and not the daughter's, and also not a parent. I went to middle school a million years ago and so much about life as a teenager has changed radically since then. We didn't have social media, cel phones, and gun drills when I was a teenager...

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Thursday
Jul262018

Review: "Mission: Impossible - Fallout"

by Chris Feil

There’s a new installment of the Mission: Impossible franchise on the block, but by now these films might best be referred to by their birth name, Tom Cruise Hangs Off Of Things. You may be aware by now that there will be stunts and Tom Cruise will be risking his life for your enjoyment. Likely in the air somehow. Mission: Impossible - Fallout provides him with plentiful airborne opportunities.

This time, Cruise’s Ethan Hunt deals with the immediate ramifications of Rogue Nation’s Syndicate, the global crime organization led by the now captured Solomon Lane. The dismantling has led to The Apostles, an offshoot terrorist organization that Hunt must prevent from stealing plutonium to be used for multiple nuclear weapons set for simultaneous explosion. Returning for the laughs are his cohorts played by Ving Rhames and Simon Pegg, and a new mustachioed face: Henry Cavill as a somewhat unwilling CIA agent assigned to their unit to also keep a close eye on Hunt. Rebecca Ferguson’s British agent Ilsa Faust returns with a mission of her own that may or may not stand in opposition to Hunt’s.

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Wednesday
Jul252018

Harlots (S2:E1-2) New Law, Old Profession

Previously: Harlots Season 1 Review

by Nathaniel R

Jessica Brown Findlay, the jewel of "Harlots"

Season 2 kicked off with two disruptive episodes back-to-back, throwing previous power hierarchies into disarray. A relentless new Justice throws the once powerful Lydia Quigley (Lesley Manville) into prison which sets off several plotlines including a new brothel run by Quigley's son Charles (Dougie McMeeken) and Emily Wells (Holli Dempsey). The show is moving with such speed that it's difficult to keep up with these working women. But we shall try since we want everyone watching this show to ensure a third season! The actressing is even more involving the second time around with new cast members, new alliances, and the masterstroke of adding the undersung Liv Tyler to the cast.

A quick review of the first two episodes before the fourth hits tonight so we'll have to have another post soon on episodes 3 and 4. It's so tough to keep up with these working girls and the 'culls' who can't get enough of them...

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