REVIEW: 1985 [2018]

“Will you wait for me if you go first?” There’s a lot to like emotionally about Yen Tan‘s 1985 and some things to be desired in execution. It’s a period piece focused upon a conservative Texas family with military man father who sees his differences from his own “tough” Dad as potential weaknesses, a loving housewife mother recently finding the courage to break from her husband’s flawed political and religious zealotry, and two sons carving an identity for themselves despite a volatile environment wholly non-conducive to their wants and desires.…

Read More

REVIEW: Big Hero 6 [2014]

“One a scale of 1 to 10: how would you rate your pain?” Many parents aren’t going to allow their young children to watch Marvel Cinematic Universe films—they skew older with dark underlying themes and comic book violence that leaves beloved characters dead. So while Disney’s purchase of Marvel gave them boundless raw material to use in order to capture the attention of teens and everyone older, the question remained whether Mickey and friends could find something in the extensive catalog that would be suitable for their target audience. On…

Read More

REVIEW: Knife Fight [2013]

“WWMD: What would Machiavelli Do?” With five nominations and two wins from the Academy Awards for documentary work, director Bill Guttentag set his sights on the world of political strategists with a potential for eye-opening revelations. Unfortunately it didn’t take long to realize acquiring usable, candid footage would be impossible when the presidential candidates he interviewed refused to be on the record. They weren’t going to allow their backhanded deals, amoral treachery, and back alley tactics see the light of day—especially not in their own words. No, for Knife Fight…

Read More

REVIEW: The Man with the Iron Fists [2012]

“When it comes to money, things get funny” Far from anything resembling a Kung Fu aficionado, I entered into RZA‘s directorial debut The Man with the Iron Fists with a lesser of many evils mentality. The theatre was to be my safe haven while my car got its oil change and of the two or three flicks I hadn’t yet seen, the potential sideshow of Jungle Village seemed the best way to spend ninety minutes. The Tarantino seal of approval and co-writing credit to Eli Roth did little to temper…

Read More

REVIEW: The Hangover Part II [2011]

“I don’t get it. Is this a magic show?” It’s very weird to go into two films with completely different feelings despite them having almost identical plots and comedic upside. Two years ago, I couldn’t wait to check out The Hangover and see if the hype was real. My contact at Warner Brothers was even compelled to confirm my RSVP for the screening by saying it’s the funniest thing she had seen in years. Somehow—and this is rare—Todd Phillips’s self-proclaimed Star Wars, due to the amount of money he earned…

Read More

REVIEW: Sucker Punch [2011]

“It will be a deep sacrifice and a perfect victory” If you’re going to make an R-rated film, you better well do so. Zack Snyder is a director who has been given the green-light to go for broke on all his adult-fare, (I exclude Legend of the Guardians from his oeuvre here), towards box office glory. So, when the time came for his passion project, you’d believe the studios would sit back and let him weave his magic. But then came Watchmen’s fiscal failure and questions about the man’s true…

Read More