Movies

Movie Review: THREE CHRISTS

THREE CHRISTS movie poster | ©2020 IFC Films

Rating: R Stars: Richard Gere, Peter Dinklage, Walton Goggins, Bradley Whitford, Charlotte Hope, Kevin Pollak, Julianna Margulies, James Monroe Iglehart, Stephen Root, Jane Alexander Writers: Eric Nazarian & Jon Avnet, based on the book THE THREE CHRISTS OF YPSILANTI by Dr. Milton Rokeach Director: Jon Avnet Distributor: IFC Films Release Date: January 10, 2020 THREE CHRISTS is neither theological nor Biblical. Instead, it’s a (seemingly loosely) fact-based drama set largely in a Michigan medical institution in 1959 and 1960. Director Jon Avnet and his co-screenwriter Eric Nazarian have taken Dr. Milton Rokeach’s nonfiction book THE THREE CHRISTS OF YPSILANTI and […]Read On »

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Year in Review: 10 BEST MOVIES OF 2019

1917 movie poster | ©2019 Universal Pictures

Yours truly doesn’t claim to be the ultimate arbiter of films, just a watcher and chronicler who has opinions. This list, then, is according to those opinions, with no claim to empirical scale. 1917 – This slightly dreamlike World War I drama is crafted so that it appears to take place in a handful of long tracking shots that swirl around the characters. We feel that we are there on the ground with a couple of young, determined English soldiers as they try to prevent an ambush, at the same time that we sometimes think we may be hallucinating. It’s […]Read On »

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Movie Review: CLEMENCY

CLEMENCY movie poster | ©2019 Neon

Rating: R Stars: Alfre Woodard, Aldis Hodge, Wendell Pierce, Richard Schiff, Michael O’Neill, Vernee Watson, Danielle Brooks Writer: Chinonye Chukwu Director: Chinonye Chukwu Distributor: Neon Release Date: December 27, 2019 CLEMENCY, written and directed by Chinonye Chukwu, is a movie we haven’t exactly ever seen before. There are certainly innumerable character studies, and plenty of movies about death row. But there aren’t many (if any) others from the point of view of the prison warden, and we haven’t met onscreen any wardens like Bernadine Williams (Alfre Woodard). Bernadine is thorough and dedicated to carrying out her job by the book. […]Read On »

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Movie Review: LITTLE WOMEN

LITTLE WOMEN movie poster | ©2019 Sony Pictures

Rating: PG Stars: Saoirse Ronan, Emma Watson, Timothee Chalamet, Florence Pugh, Eliza Scanlen, Laura Dern, Bob Odenkirk, Meryl Streep, Tracy Letts, Chris Cooper, Louis Garrel, Jayne Houdyshell Writer: Greta Gerwig, based on the novel by Louisa May Alcott Director: Greta Gerwig Distributor: Sony/Columbia Release Date: December 25, 2019 This reviewer has long known of Louisa May Alcott’s beloved novel LITTLE WOMEN, and its multiple film, TV and stage adaptations without ever reading/seeing any of them. Therefore, this review of the new iteration, directed by Greta Gerwig from her screenplay, has been written with no basis for comparison. Strictly on its […]Read On »

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Movie Review: 1917

1917 movie poster | ©2019 Universal Pictures

Rating: R Stars: George MacKay, Dean-Charles Chapman, Colin Firth, Andrew Scott, Benedict Cumberbatch, Mark Strong, Richard Madden, Adrian Scarborough, Claire Duburcq Writers: Sam Mendes & Krysty Wilson-Cairns Director: Sam Mendes Distributor: Universal Pictures Release Date: December 25, 2019 1917 is a World War I movie that (we are told by a supertitle) begins on April 6. Two young British lance corporals, Schofield (George MacKay) and Blake (Dean-Charles Chapman), are ordered by General Erinmore (Colin Firth) to take a message across what until recently was enemy territory. It seems that a British colonel has mistaken a German strategic retreat for an opportunity. […]Read On »

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Movie Review: JUST MERCY

JUST MERCY movie poster | ©2019 Warner Bros.

Rating: PG-13 Stars: Michael B. Jordan, Jamie Foxx, Brie Larson, Tim Blake Nelson, Rob Morgan, O’Shea Jackson Jr., Rafe Spall Writers: Destin Daniel Cretton & Andrew Lanham, based on the book by Bryan Stevenson Director: Destin Daniel Cretton Distributor: Warner Bros. Release Date: December 25, 2019  JUST MERCY opens in 1987 Monroeville, Alabama (where, all of the white locals continually point out, Harper Lee wrote TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD). Walter McMillian (Jamie Foxx), known to all his friends as Johnny D, is a cheerful family man with his own pulping business. One night, he is pulled over and arrested for the […]Read On »

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Movie Review: STAR WARS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER

STAR WARS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER | ©2019 Lucasfilm

Rating: PG-13 Stars: Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Anthony Daniels, Billy Dee Williams, Carrie Fisher, Joonas Suotamo, Keri Russell, Ian McDiarmid, Kelly Marie Tran, Naomi Ackie Writers: Chris Terrio & J.J. Abrams, story by Derek Connolly & Colin Trevorrow and Chris Terrio & J.J. Abrams, based on characters created by George Lucas Distributor: Walt Disney Pictures Release Date: December 20, 2019 All movies are Rorschach tests to some extent. What we feel about them, what we want from them and what we see in them derives from who we are when we go into the theatre. Even […]Read On »

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Movie Review: BLACK CHRISTMAS (2019)

BLACK CHRISTMAS (2019) movie poster | ©2019 Universal Pictures

Rating: PG-13 Stars: Imogen Poots, Aleyse Shannon, Lily Donoghue, Brittany O’Grady, Caleb Eberhardt, Cary Elwes, Simon Mead, Madeleine Adams, Ryan McIntyre Writers: Sophia Takal & April Wolfe Director: Sophia Takal Distributor: Universal Pictures Release Date: December 13, 2019 Look up BLACK CHRISTMAS on IMDB and, surprise, there are five listed besides the 1974 original, a slasher set in a sorority where most of the sisters have gone home for the holidays. The new edition, also titled BLACK CHRISTMAS, is likewise a slasher set among the Greek houses during December. However, it’s a safe bet that nobody in 1974 imagined the […]Read On »

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Movie Review: RICHARD JEWELL

RICHARD JEWELL movie poster | ©2019 Warner Bros.

Rating: R Stars: Paul Walter Hauser, Sam Rockwell, Kathy Bates, Olivia Wilde, Jon Hamm, Nina Arianda Writer: Billy Ray, based on the article “American Nightmare: The Ballad of Richard Jewell” by Marie Brenner and the book SUSPECT by Kent Alexander and Kevin Salwen Director: Clint Eastwood Distributor: Warner Bros. Release Date: December 13, 2019 On July 27, 1996, Richard Jewell, a security guard working a concert at Atlanta, Georgia’s Centennial Park during the Olympic Games, noticed an unattended backpack. Colleagues thought Jewell was overreacting, but the bomb squad was called. The backpack indeed contained several pipe bombs. Jewell participated in […]Read On »

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Movie Review: DANIEL ISN’T REAL

DANIEL ISN'T REAL movie poster | ©2019 Samuel Goldwyn Films

Rating: Not Rated Stars: Miles Robbins, Patrick Schwarzenegger, Sasha Lane, Mary Stuart Masterson, Hannah Marks, Chukwudi Iwuji, Peter McRobbie Writers: Adam Egypt Mortimer and Brian DeLeeuw, based on the novel IN THIS WAY I WAS SAVED by Brian DeLeeuw Director: Adam Egypt Mortimer Distributor: Samuel Goldwyn Films Release Date: December 6, 2019 DANIEL ISN’T REAL is a horror movie that builds steadily under Adam Egypt Mortimer’s direction. Mortimer and his co-screenwriter Brian DeLeeuw, adapting DeLeeuw’s novel IN THIS WAY I WAS SAVED, thankfully don’t play the is-this-real-or-a-delusion game for too long. Instead, they opt for a definitive answer that allows […]Read On »

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