There is a wondrously cheesy sincerity to SHAZAM! that makes its weak spots irrelevant. It is, in many ways, as pure of heart as its champion, and just as giddy about discovering that magic is real. Plus, there’s that flaming Santa running for his life during the climactic final face-off between good and evil.
It’s a clever premise that propels ISN’T IT ROMANTIC, using the idiom of rom-coms to give us just that, but a rom-com that affirms that the regular Joe and Jane out there can also be the star. One that deconstructs every cliché with self-aware relish, while also staying open to the magic of true love.… Read More »
It is with great relief that I report on an American remake of a fine French film that doesn’t drain me of the will to live. After DINNER FOR SCHMUCKS and FATHER’S DAY, the travesties of which haunt me to this very day, Neil Burger’s THE UPSIDE captures most of the essence of what made… Read More »
We learn many things in M. Night Shyamalan’s GLASS. We learn that the Philadelphia police department has an abysmal response time. We learn that a fully staffed psychiatric hospital has only two orderlies its employ. And we learn that James McAvoy still cries more manfully than any other actor working today. Possibly ever. He is… Read More »
One comes away from HOLMES AND WATSON bemused. The stunning lack of entertainment value in a film starring Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly is almost a body blow, such is its unremitting ineptitude. Using as its premise the same spoofery done much better by the Wayans Brothers in their series of SCARY MOVIE riffs,… Read More »
There is little that tugs more insistently at my heartstrings, cinematically at least, than a film that genuinely means well and falls short. And so it is with WELCOME TO MARWEN, a showcase of CGI and of Steve Carrell’s dramatic chops, but of little else. The story is based on the life of Mark Hogencamp,… Read More »
The good news is that Momoa and his mammoth charm more than carry a film that is decidedly not the most original of super-hero tales.
Years ago, there was a perfectly delightful mash-up of pop songs and medieval literature in A KNIGHT’S TALE, a frothy entertainment in which David Bowie met Geoffrey Chaucer. It succeeded for many reason, not the least of which is that it didn’t take itself too seriously. Alas, ROBIN HOOD, a similar foray into unexpected juxtaposition,… Read More »
Rami Malek, star of television’s Mr. Robot and the (mostly) overlooked Indie gem, BUSTER’S MAL HEART, may just have found the vehicle to assure him of the A-list stardom he so richly deserves in BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY. Like the character Malek essays, Queen lead singer Freddie Mercury, the film is flawed but Malek, through the sheer… Read More »
The rom-com as a genre has suffered much in the last decade or so due to a surfeit of agonizingly insipid cinematic attempts. So when one comes along that reminds us what a good one is like, it is a cause for celebration. And so it is with CRAZY RICH ASIANS, based on Kevin Kwan’s… Read More »