Top Ten Films of 2018

It’s a rare year when your top twenty-five films find the room to allow their usual Oscar-bait dramas to co-exist with foreign favorites, heartfelt documentaries, surreal comedies, and superhero fantasy adventures. Rarer still is a period of time such as 2018 wherein it happens two or three times over. And it’s not just about familiar […]

REVIEW: Judy [2019]

“What if I can’t do it again?” Playwright Peter Quilter has stated that the original play (“Last Song of the Nightingale”) on which “End of the Rainbow” was modeled upon found its inspiration from an alcoholic male singer met while traveling with his partner on a cruise ship wherein the latter was also a performer. […]

REVIEW: Monos [2019]

“The Organization is our family” A scene of kids having fun playing a game of blindfolded soccer at night turns into a day of boot camp with an unknown man (Wilson Salazar) berating them like a drill sergeant to run faster, look meaner, and stand straighter. These child soldiers are hiding high up in the […]

REVIEW: Hustlers [2019]

“We were like hurricanes” What’s a better hustle than declining the price tag a Hollywood studio offered for your life rights to wait until the film is a hit and then sue the production for defamation? Samantha Barbash pretty much bet on the story—I’m hypothesizing that this was her intent based solely on her characterization […]

REVIEW: Harpoon [2019]

“We need to promise not to kill each other” Writer/director Rob Grant wastes zero time getting us in the right frame of mind with Brett Gelman‘s perfectly sardonic voice narrating an auspiciously violent collision of three close friends caught in a lovers’ misunderstanding. Harpoon‘s first scene provides effect—a stranded yacht in the middle of the […]

REVIEW: Ad Astra [2019]

“Most of us spend our entire life in hiding” In our quests for more, many of us forget that which we already have. This is true on a micro (sacrificing family for career) and macro (domination no matter the collateral damage) level. Space exploration can often become a rather direct example of this as a […]

REVIEW: Zeroville [2019]

“Your head precedes you” An autistic architecture student at a seminary in Pennsylvania watches his first ever film (A Place in the Sun) and has an experience akin to hearing the voice of God. This new world is opened to Jerome “Vikar” Isaac and he decides he needs to be a part of it. So […]

REVIEW: Low Tide [2019]

“You ready to go exploring?” Just because writer/director Kevin McMullin‘s debut feature Low Tide centers on a trio of locals stuck in a New Jersey banks vacation town and forced to watch rich kids come every summer to treat them like one of the attractions with which to entertain themselves doesn’t mean it’s an “us […]

REVIEW: Así habló el cambista [The Moneychanger] [2019]

“Enjoy every penny earned and spent” Mr. Schweinsteiger (Luis Machín) ran a good game in Uruguay by helping unsavory folks launder money through him for a percentage. He was smart too, refusing to work with politicians knowing they’d eventually screw something up and drag his name down with them. Unfortunately, however, the man he willingly […]

REVIEW: The Goldfinch [2019]

“I lost something that should have been immortal” Theo Decker (Oakes Fegley) lost a lot one fateful day at The Metropolitan Museum of Art when an unexplained terrorist bombing took his mother, home, stability, and, most importantly, his childhood away. One second he’s stealing a glimpse of the young girl (Aimee Laurence‘s Pippa) beside him […]

REVIEW: Depraved [2019]

“You brought the war home with you” So much of what we do in our lives comes down to a matter of could versus should. Many of us want to prove ourselves worthy by doing something nobody has ever done before, yet the hubris of such a desire often leaves us paying a price we […]