Movies

Movie Review: MARY

MARY movie poster | ©2019 RLJE Films

Rating: R Stars: Gary Oldman, Emily Mortimer, Jennifer Esposito, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo, Owen Teague, Stefanie Scott, Chloe Perrin Writer: Anthony Jaswinski Director: Michael Goi Distributor: RLJE Films Release Date (theatrical and On Demand): October 11, 2019 MARY in many respects resembles a lot of other modest horror films, with two big differences. One, it’s shot on actual film, which gives it a much crisper, richer look than many of its peers. This makes sense, as its director, Michael Goi, is an award-winning cinematographer, who also serves in that capacity here. Two, MARY stars Gary Oldman and Emily Mortimer, actors whose big-name […]Read On »

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Movie Review: GEMINI MAN

GEMINI MAN movie poster | ©2019 Paramount Pictures

Rating: PG-13 Stars: Will Smith, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Clive Owen, Benedict Wong, Linda Emond Writers: David Benioff and Billy Ray and Darren Lemke, story by Darren Lemke and David Benioff Director: Ang Lee Distributor: Paramount Release Date: October 11, 2019 GEMINI MAN is shot at 120 frames per second, rather than the conventional 24 frames per second. When Peter Jackson tried something like this, at 48 frames a second for 2012’s THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY, it gave the movie an unfortunate videotape look. However, the technology has clearly improved hugely since then. The combination of the 120 frames per second […]Read On »

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Movie Review: JOKER

JOKER movie poster | ©2019 Warner Bros.

Rating: R Stars: Joaquin Phoenix, Frances Conroy, Robert De Niro, Zazie Beetz, Brett Cullen, Bill Camp, Shea Whigham, Glenn Fleshler, Leigh Gill, Sharon Washington Writers: Todd Phillips & Scott Silver, based on characters from DC Comics Director: Todd Phillips Distributor: Warner Bros. Release Date: October 4, 2019 Seldom has it been so hard to figure out a letter grade for a movie review. JOKER doesn’t precisely defy normal measures of quality, but its ambiguities are simultaneously intriguing and frustrating. Despite rumors to the contrary, JOKER is set squarely within the Batman universe, even if this is a Gotham City grimier […]Read On »

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Movie Review: AD ASTRA

AD ASTRA movie poster | ©2019 20th Century Fox

Rating: PG-13 Stars: Brad Pitt, Tommy Lee Jones, Ruth Negga, Liv Tyler, Donald Sutherland Writers: James Gray and Ethan Gross Director: James Gray Distributor: Twentieth Century Fox Release Date: September 19, 2019 AD ASTRA is nominally a science fiction film. Its title translates as “to the stars,” and most of it takes place off-world, on a variety of spacecraft and space stations. The plot revolves around trying to prevent a solar system-wide power outage. However, AD ASTRA is actually a family drama. More specifically, it is about an astronaut, Roy McBride (Brad Pitt), contemplating his relationship with his father, H. […]Read On »

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Movie Review: THE GOLDFINCH

THE GOLDFINCH movie poster | ©2019 Warner Bros.

Rating: R Stars: Ansel Elgort, Oakes Fegley, Jeffrey Wright, Nicole Kidman, Luke Wilson, Sarah Paulson, Ashleigh Cummings, Finn Wolfhard, Aneurin Barnard, Willa Fitzgerald, Denis O’Hare, Aimee Laurence, Ryan Foust Writer: Peter Straughan, based on the novel by Donna Tartt Director: John Crowley Distributor: Warner Bros. Release Date: September 13, 2019 THE GOLDFINCH movie shares its title not only on the Pulitzer Prize-winning Donna Tartt novel on which it is based, but also with a real-world 1654 painting by Dutch artist Carel Fabritius. The “Goldfinch” painting is famous for having survived an explosion that killed Fabritius and destroyed most of his […]Read On »

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Movie Review: EMPATHY INC.

EMPATHY INC. movie poster | ©2019 Dark Sky Pictures

Rating: Not Rated Stars: Zack Robidas, Kathy Searle, Jay Klaitz, Eric Berryman, AJ Cedeno, Charmaine Reedy, Fenton Lawless, Karen Lynn Gorney Writer: Mark Leidner Director: Yedidya Gorsetman Distributor: Dark Star Pictures Release Date: September 13, 2019 EMPATHY INC. is a fairly smart, twisty techno fable. Although the movie has the feel of a classic TWILIGHT ZONE episode, including its beautifully crisp black-and-white cinematography (courtesy of Darin Quan’s cinematography), it has enough story to justify its feature length. What it doesn’t have, exactly, is the social resonance to fully justify its title, even ironically. Joel (Zack Robidas) is finance guy who […]Read On »

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Movie Review: HAUNT

HAUNT movie poster | ©2019 Momentum Pictures

Rating: R Stars: Katie Stevens, Will Brittain, Lauryn Alisa McClain, Andrew Caldwell, Shazi Raja, Schuyler Helford, Chaney Morrow, Justin Marxen, Samuel Hunt Writers: Scott Beck & Bryan Woods Directors: Scott Beck & Bryan Woods Distributor: Momentum Pictures Release Date: September 13, 2019 HAUNT arrives a little early for Halloween, but has an appropriate Friday the 13th opening. The title does not refer to an actual haunted house, but rather to those independent Halloween mazes called “haunts.” Set in the real college town of Carbondale, Illinois and shot in Kentucky, HAUNT introduces us to student Harper (Katie Stevens), who as we […]Read On »

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Movie Review: NIGHT HUNTER

NIGHT HUNTER movie poster | ©2019 Saban Films

Rating: R Stars: Alexandra Daddario, Henry Cavill, Ben Kingsley, Minka Kelly, Ben Kingsley, Nathan Fillion, Stanley Tucci, Eliana Jones, Sara Thompson, Brendan Fletcher, Emma Tremblay Writer: David Raymond Director: David Raymond Distributor: Saban Films Release Date: September 6, 2019 NIGHT HUNTER is one of those internationally-made thrillers that is competent and well-cast enough to be diverting, but without a solid structure. Set in Minneapolis (and shot in Canada), NIGHT HUNTER stars Henry Cavill, using his real-life English accent, as police homicide detective Marshall, who has been tracking a prolific rapist/murderer for years. Marshall crosses paths with former judge Cooper (Ben […]Read On »

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Movie Review: IT CHAPTER TWO

IT CHAPTER 2 movie poster | ©2019 Warner Bros.

Rating: R Stars: Jessica Chastain, James McAvoy, Bill Hader, Isaiah Mustafa, Jay Ryan, James Ransone, Andy Bean, Bill Skarsgard, Jaeden Martell, Wyatt Oleff, Jack Dylan Grazer, Finn Wolfhard, Sophia Lillis, Chosen Jacobs, Jeremy Ray Taylor Writer: Gary Dauberman, based on the novel by Stephen King Director: Andy Muschietti Distributor: Warner Bros./New Line Release Date: September 6, 2019 As its title indicates, IT CHAPTER TWO is a sequel to 2017’s IT. Both are adapted from Stephen King’s novel. IT director Andy Muschietti is back, as is screenwriter Gary Dauberman (credited solo this time after being one of three writers credited on […]Read On »

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Movie Review: READY OR NOT

READY OR NOT movie poster | ©2019 Fox Searchlight

Rating: R Stars: Samara Weaving, Adam Brody, Michael O’Brien, Henry Czerny, Andie MacDowell, Melanie Scrofano, Kristian Bruun, Nicky Guadagni, Elyse Levesque, John Ralston Writers: Guy Busick and Ryan Murphy Directors: Matt Bettinelli-Olpin & Tyler Gillett Distributor: Fox Searchlight Release Date: August 21, 2019 READY OR NOT is at heart a riff on THE MOST DANGEROUS GAME. Unlike the abruptly pulled-from-release THE HUNT, though, it’s unlikely anybody is going to worry about READY OR NOT making some kind of political statement. Well, okay, the statement that kids generally accept whatever their families do as normal is arguably political, but most people […]Read On »

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