R.I.P.D. (2013)

Men in Black was released in 1997. R.I.P.D. was released in 2013. There is absolutely no reason that the latter, which is essentially a retread of the former, should look worse. I’m not saying that special effects make or break a film, but I’m also not saying that they don’t help. That’s especially true in […]

Edge of Tomorrow (2014)

Edge of Tomorrow would be “the first good summer blockbuster” if X-Men had come out a couple of weeks later. Finally, we have an incredibly thrilling, interesting, and funny blockbuster — one worth watching more than once, I think. Actually, you know what? Edge of Tomorrow is a better movie than the new X-Men, and […]

Anna (2014)

Anna is a moderately entertaining mystery movie that basically falls apart as it’s trying to wrap things up. That’s a problem with a lot of mysteries. It’s tough to get everything to fall into place perfectly, and sometimes the twists and turns become too much to keep straight. In this case, a reveal later on […]

How to Lose Friends & Alienate People (2008)

Adapted from the memoir of the same named written by Toby Young, How to Lose Friends & Alienate People is a satirical movie about celebrity journalism and “making it” in the business. It stars Simon Pegg as an aspiring journalist named Sidney Young — names have been changed for the purpose of the film — […]

I Spit on Your Grave 2 (2013)

Most of the time the answer to the question “Why does this exist?” is very simple: money. Whether it be an adaptation of something that doesn’t need to be filmed, a sequel to a poorly received but financially successful movie, or a remake of a foreign film, the answer is the same. It’s all because […]

A Million Ways to Die in the West (2014)

Imagine yourself a filmmaker who has several successful television shows and you’ve created a single movie that made far more money than it probably should. What do you do next? Take a break? Just keep up with the TV shows? How about putting yourself in the leading role of your next feature, even though you’re […]

Maleficent (2014)

I don’t really know if Sleeping Beauty needed to be re-told again, but if we’re going to get one, at least the one we get is like Maleficent, which delivers a different take on the classic story. This time around, the point of view from which we watch is Maleficent’s, and that delivers a more […]

The Grand Seduction (2014)

I’m entirely unsure of how The Grand Seduction, a Canadian comedy which is a remake of an earlier Canadian comedy, will be seen outside of its home country. For a lot of the time, it really does feel like a “Canadian comedy,” not one that will appeal to those who don’t have the kind of […]

Under the Skin (2014)

If the goal of good art is to provoke emotion and thought, all while looking gorgeous, then Under the Skin is the artiest art that ever arted an art. By that, I mean that it definitely comes across as an “art film,” and that it’s also a really, really good art film. Whether you’re here […]

The Good Life (2007)

Movies about small towns, and the longing their residents have to escape them, are commonplace in the American independent film circle. What was once a novel idea is now its own saturated sub-genre. It allows for quirky characters and logic, strong drama, and a great location to shoot a movie. These types of movies are […]

The Toxic Avenger Part II (1989)

While no masterpiece by any stretch of the imagination, The Toxic Avenger Part II is a moderate improvement over its predecessor. It’s funnier, its plot has more going on, and it felt more action-packed. Is it still a junky B-movie? Of course! But this one didn’t bore me the way that the first Toxic Avenger […]

Snow White and the Huntsman (2012)

About the first time the Evil Queen (Charlize Theron) showed up in Snow White and the Huntsman, I was on board with this project. The Queen’s motivation, instead of just being evil for evil’s sake, is that she was indoctrinated at a young age that beauty is the only way for a woman to survive […]

Mirror Mirror (2012)

A silly, comedic and light take on the Snow White story, Mirror Mirror aims to do a couple of things. The first is to provide a very pretty visual experience. It has been directed by Tarsem Singh, after all, and his previous directorial efforts have all been gorgeous. Mirror Mirror is no exception. The second […]

X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014)

It can’t just be me who thinks that it’s incredibly interesting that director Bryan Singer was first hired to retcon out of existence Superman 3 and 4, and has now been brought back to the X-Men franchise (he directed the first two) to do the same with its third and fourth installments. The key difference, […]

Blended (2014)

I’ll give Blended credit for being slightly better than I expected it to be. It’s not a Jack & Jill level of failure, but I implore you not to take that as a recommendation. Just because something generates a few laughs over the course of a two-hour running time, that doesn’t mean that it’s worth […]

The Dreamers (2003)

How much do you happen to know about 1968 Paris? Are you aware of the riots? What started them? How they played out and wound up coming to an end? What they were about? What the period in time was about in Paris at the time? If you don’t know, either The Dreamers will serve […]

Devil in the Flesh 2 (2000)

While I have no proof of this, I’d be willing to guess that Devil in the Flesh 2 originated as a Devil in the Flesh copycat that was eventually re-written — or re-shot, potentially, I suppose — in order to kind of work as a Devil in the Flesh sequel instead. I say this for […]

The Toxic Avenger (1984)

Set in the town of Tromaville, New Jersey — because the film was produced by Troma Entertainment, I guess — The Toxic Avenger is a film about a nerd getting his revenge on bullies while also showing us just how bad pollution is. Admittedly, from that description the movie sounds like an after-school special, but […]