This week, Matt and Tiny review Arrival, the latest film from Denis Villeneuve. They also follow up on last week’s review of Doctor Strange and discuss The Accountant and Gilmore Girls. Continue reading →
In The Good Dinosaur, Pixar imagines a world where dinosaurs never went extinct and now live alongside humans. The movie follows Arlo, a young cowardly dinosaur who finds himself lost from his family farm and forced to confront his fears to return home. Arlo finds an unlikely companion in a human “creature” named Spot, who acts as Arlo’s guard dog. Continue reading →
In Clay Riley Hassler‘s Homeless, Michael McDowell plays Gosh (pronounced Josh), a teenager who’s homeless and struggling to improve his situation. We follow Gosh as he spends his days searching for a job until nightfall when he goes back to the homeless shelter. When he meets a single mother at the mall, things start to look up.
Raiders! The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made tells the story of three kids in 1982 who set out to create a shot for shot remake of Raiders of the Lost Ark in Mississippi. The project lasted seven years and all that was left to film was one crucial scene. Now over thirty years later, the men have reunited to complete their remake of Steven Spielberg’s iconic movie.
In Richmond, California there’s a feud raging in the streets. Central Richmond and unincorporated North Richmond have been at war for so long that no one is sure exactly when or why the violence started. It’s in this world that we’re introduced to Donté Clark, a poet from Richmond who uses his passion to bring people together against the violence in his community. Continue reading →
The Big Lonely opens with a statement saying it is a documentary shot entirely by its main character with no production crew present. As the film’s subject Michael Nelms sets a fire, the viewer is instantly immersed into this story of a man isolated and alone in the wilderness for almost a decade.
In Denis Villeneuve‘s latest movie Sicario, Emily Blunt plays Kate, an idealistic FBI agent recruited to an interagency task force working to take down a drug cartel on the US/Mexico border. As the task force moves closer to the objective, Kate begins to question the tactics they use and her purpose within the unit. Continue reading →
After an unexpected storm forces the abort of a manned Mars mission, astronaut Mark Watney (Matt Damon) finds himself stranded on the red planet. Faced with overwhelming odds, Watney must use his wits and science to survive on the planet long enough to be rescued. Continue reading →
No Escape pits Jack Dwyer (Owen Wilson), his wife Annie (Lake Bell) and their two young daughters (Claire Geare and Sterling Jerins) in the middle of a coup soon after the family moves to their new Asian home. When chaos reigns in the streets, and foreigners are brutally executed, the family must overcome unbelievable odds to ensure their safety.
The opening scene of the movie shows a diplomatic summit from the perspective of a guard. We watch as a waiter carries drinks to the officials speaking after the guard tests them presumably for poison. Knowing the premise of the movie, you expect a certain resolution to this sequence but the movie utilizes misdirection to keep you on the edge of your seat.
Vacation shares some surprising similarities with Jurassic World. Both are pseudo-reboots of decades-old franchises masquerading as sequels that both feature amusement parks with velociraptors. Of course, in Jurassic World the velociraptor is the only character with meaningful development whereas Vacation‘s velociraptor is a roller coaster. However, their biggest similarity is the fact that they both missed their marks completely. Continue reading →
Following the death of her father, troubled teenager Mackenzie (Ella Purnell) is sent to Juneau, Alaska to stay with her uncle (Brian Geraghty) while her mother works out some of her own issues. When her uncle’s home proves not to be safe for Mackenzie, she goes on the run. While trying to survive on her own and evading detection, she crosses paths with Rene Bartlett (Bruce Greenwood), a man with his own troubles on a private quest for peace. Continue reading →
Saturday was Indy Film Fest’s “best of” screenings, which featured screenings of each of the festival’s winning shorts and features in their respective categories. Fortunately for me, one of the movies I wanted to see most of all this year, Charles Hood’s Night Owls, won best feature in the American Spectrum category. This gave me the opportunity to see it as the other screenings conflicted with my schedule. As an added bonus, it was paired with the “Best American Spectrum” short film, Michael Goode’s The Answers. Below you’ll find my review of both. Of course, you can find all of my Indy Film Fest coverage here. Continue reading →
Written by Amy Schumer and directed by Judd Apatow, Trainwreck is a cookie cutter romantic comedy that follows every beat and convention of the genre to a tee but attempts to get away with it on the strength of its lead actress. Surprisingly, it almost succeeds in that regard and manages to provide some laughs as it takes its audience down familiar rom-com territory. Continue reading →
The animation was good but other than that, I was bored out of my mind. The Grinch retells Dr. Seuss' stories without much heart or even energy. The movie felt like it was simply going through the paces without taking the proper care to develop the character past a dull exposition dump. The citizens of Whoville are given a couple passing one-note charac […]
Love, Simon reminded me a lot of 2010's Easy A. So much so, that by the end of the movie I started affectionately thinking of it as Easy Gay. I mean that as a high compliment because what Easy A got so right about the teen coming of age genre is exactly what Love, Simon excels at. Both movies are very witty, romantic, and treat teenage/high school cultu […]
I really liked the energy of Cheap Thrills. It's a dark comedy with a pretty sick plot that could have been played up for more drama. But that would have ruined the experience. We get the motivations for the characters to participate in Koechner's character's messed up game and that's really all we need to be strapped into the movie. The […]
The Tale is one of the year's most powerful movies. Lauren Dern and Isabelle Nélisse give truly gripping performances. Jason Ritter and Elizabeth Debicki are particularly haunting throughout the film. But I want to single out writer/director Jennifer Fox. The Tale is the true story of sexual abuse that Fox went through when she was 13 and how she recove […]
I have something of a love-hate relationship with Bill Murray. On a good day, I find his dry wit style funny and charming. On a bad day, I wish he would just try harder or at least be more emotionally present in his roles. Scrooged is a solid enough comedy for that. The standard emotional Christmas moments are performed well by him. But the lead up to those […]
Always only hits a couple marks when it comes to what makes Spielberg so great. The first act showing Dreyfuss and Hunter's relationship is classic Spielberg sentiment. Honestly, that worked well for me. I bought into the relationship and thought both actors were very charismatic. But once Always gets into its main storyline (Dreyfuss dies, his ghost co […]