Reviews

Movie Review: DEAR EVAN HANSEN

DEAR EVAN HANSEN movie poster | ©2021 Universal Pictures

Rating: PG-13 Stars: Ben Platt, Julianne Moore, Kaitlyn Dever, Amy Adams, Danny Pino, Amandla Stenberg, Colton Ryan, Nik Dodani Writer: Steven Levenson, music and lyrics by Benj Pasek & Justin Paul Director: Stephen Chbosky Distributor: Universal Pictures Release Date: September 24, 2021 DEAR EVAN HANSEN is a new musical film, based on the stage production, which won Tony Awards for Best Musical, Best Book of a Musical, Best Original Score Written for the Theatre, and Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical. Not having seen the live version, this reviewer cannot make any comparisons, only […]Read On »

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Movie Review: SHELTER IN PLACE

SHELTER IN PLACE movie poster | ©2021 1091 Pictures

Rating: Not Rated Stars: Brendan Hines, Tatjana Marjanovic, Ola Kaminska, Kevin Daniels, Jey Reynolds Writers: Christopher Beyrooty & Connor Martin Directors: Christopher Beyrooty & Connor Martin Distributor: 1091 Pictures Release Date: September 14, 2021 SHELTER IN PLACE is set at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel (for Los Angeles non-locals, this is a real-life historic high-end establishment on Hollywood Boulevard). Fair warning: it takes place during a pandemic, when everything is on lockdown. If you feel that you’ve had enough of feeling isolated and trapped in your own recent experience and don’t want any more in your entertainment, this may not be […]Read On »

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Movie Review: BAD CANDY

BAD CANDY movie poster | ©2021 Dread

Rating: Not Rated Stars: Zach Galligan, Corey Taylor, Riley Sutton Writers: Scott B. Hansen & Desiree Connell Directors: Scott B. Hansen & Desiree Connell Distributor: Dread Release Date: September 10, 2021 BAD CANDY is a very mixed bag. There’s no question that the movie provides more stories than we might expect for a modestly-budgeted horror anthology. It also has good creature and gore effects. There’s a CREEPSHOW-comic book vibe here that is often fun, but sometimes unfortunately extends to the CGI, which doesn’t always match the stronger practical aspects. The framing device for BAD CANDY is the Chilly Billy show […]Read On »

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Movie Review: MALIGNANT

MALIGNANT movie poster | ©2021 Warner Bros./New Line Cinema

Rating: R Stars: Annabelle Wallis, Maddie Hasson, George Young, Jacqueline McKenzie, Michole Briana White, Jake Abel, Ingrid Bisu, Mckenna Grace Writer: Akela Cooper, story by James Wan & Ingrid Bisu and Akela Cooper Director: James Wan Distributor: Warner Bros./New Line Cinema Release Date: September 10, 2021 MALIGNANT is a word that can mean malevolent or, in medical terms, virulent/highly infectious. While MALIGNANT won’t be anybody’s idea of a medical drama, the title is apt. In a prologue, we’re at the Simion Research Hospital in 1993. Gabriel has just escaped from his holding cell. He is malicious, violent, and so able […]Read On »

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Movie Review: THE LAST MATINEE (AL MORIR LA MATINEE)

THE LAST MATINEE movie poster | ©2021 Dark Star Pictures

Rating: Not Rated Stars: Luciana Grasso, Ricardo Islas, Emanuel Sobrė, Patricia Porzio, Bruno Salvati, Julieta Spinelli, Vladimir Knazevs, Franco Duran, Pedro Duarte Writer: Manuel Facal, story by Maximiliano Contenti Director: Maximiliano Contenti Distributor: Dark Star Pictures Release Date: August 24, 2021 THE LAST MATINEE is a Uruguayan/Argentinian has art and horror. The combination is not what it should be, though, due to extremely slow pacing. A subtitle informs us that we’re in the Uruguayan capital city Montevideo in 1993. Someone more familiar with Montevideo than this reviewer will need to weigh in on what’s changed there to require THE LAST […]Read On »

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Movie Review: CANDYMAN

CANDYMAN movie poster | ©2021 Universal Pictures/MGM

Rating: R Stars: Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Teyonah Parris, Nathan Stewart-Jarrett, Kyle Kaminsky, Coleman Domingo, Michael Hargrove, Brian King, Rebecca Spence Writers: Jordan Peele and Win Rosenfeld and Nia DaCosta, based on the 1992 CANDYMAN screenplay by Bernard Rose and the short story THE FORBIDDEN by Clive Barker Director: Nia DaCosta Distributor: Universal/MGM Release Date: August 27, 2021 CANDYMAN is being billed as “a spiritual sequel” to the 1992 feature film of the same name. Since that was set in Chicago’s Cabrini-Green housing projects, and the new movie is set in the upscale apartment complexes occupying the same area, and since […]Read On »

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Movie Review: BLOOD CONSCIOUS

BLOOD CONSCIOUS movie poster | ©2021 Dark Sky Films

Rating: Not Rated Stars: Oghenero Gbaje, DeShawn White, Lenny Thomas, Lori Hammel, Nick Damici Writer: Timothy Covell Director: Timothy Covell Distributor: Dark Sky Films Release Date: August 20, 2021 In BLOOD CONSCIOUS, director/writer Timothy Covell puts forth a puzzle beloved of the TWILIGHT ZONE. Is there really a demonic infestation, or is it just mistrust and paranoia? How can the difference between these be determined? The set-up is promising and Covell gives us a number of scenarios in which we try to figure out what’s happening. However, he commits a grievous narrative sin only twenty minutes into the running time. […]Read On »

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Movie Review: THE EMPTY MAN

THE EMPTY MAN movie poster | ©2021 20th Century Fox

Rating: R Stars: James Badge Dale, Marin Ireland, Stephen Root, Ron Canada, Sasha Frolova Writer: David Prior, screen story by David Prior, based on the graphic novel by Cullen Bunn Director: David Prior Distributor: Twentieth Century Fox Release Date: October 23, 2020 (theatrical); January 29, 2021 (DVD/Blu-ray) THE EMPTY MAN was prematurely buried – not the entity, the film itself. Copyright 2018, THE EMPTY MAN received a blink-and-miss-it theatrical release in October, 2020, followed by a somewhat more accessible DVD/Blu-ray rollout on January 29 of this year. It is now available on HBO and HBO Max. The fact that THE […]Read On »

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Movie Review: HOWLING VILLAGE (INUNAKI MURA)

HOWLING VILLAGE movie poster |©2021 Dread

Rating: Not Rated Stars: Ayaka Miyoshi, Ryŏta Bandŏ, Renji Ishibashi, Rinka Ōtani, Masanobu Takashima, Reiko Takashima, Akira Sasamoto Writers: Daisuke Hosaka and Takashi Shimizu Director: Takashi Shimizu Distributor: Dread Release Date: August 13, 2021  HOWLING VILLAGE (INUNAKI MURA) is directed and co-written by Takashi Shimizu, who created the popular 2002 JU-ON: THE GRUDGE, which has spawned a franchise. JU-ON: THE GRUDGE was more than a little ambiguous, and misleadingly titled (it’s about rage, not a “grudge” as the term is used in English), but it fulfilled its main purpose in scaring the daylights out of viewers. Unfortunately, HOWLING VILLAGE has […]Read On »

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Movie Review: THE SUICIDE SQUAD

THE SUICIDE SQUAD movie poster | ©2021 Warner Bros./DC

Rating: R Stars: Margot Robbie, Idris Elba, John Cena, Joel Kinnaman, Viola Davis, Daniela Melchior, Steve Agee, Sylvester Stallone (voice), David Dastmachian, Jai Courtney, Peter Capaldi, Alice Braga, Juan Diego Botto, Joaquin Cosio, Michael Rooker, Nathan Fillion Writer: James Gunn Director: James Gunn Distributor: Warner Bros. Release Date: August 5, 2021 THE SUICIDE SQUAD is a surprisingly buoyant follow-up to 2016’s SUICIDE SQUAD. The earlier film gave us a batch of super-reluctant heroes, actually villains from D.C. Comics, tasked with saving the world from a supernatural menace, since Superman was dead and Batman was only one non-superpowered guy (this was […]Read On »

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