‘Baby Driver’ Review: Fast And Curious Flick Driven By Cool Playlist, Hot Wheels & Style For Miles
Sony’s Baby Driver, the SXSW sensation that aims to be the cool ride of the summer for moviegoers with the need for speed and iTunes at any cost, has much to recommend it. Director-writer Edgar Wright delivers here in style that goes on for days and should have fans dribbling. His output of movies like Shaun Of The Dead, At World’s End and Hot Fuzz has always been a mixed bag for me — enormously promising hipster films that lack total discipline by a helmer who sometimes… Read
‘War For The Planet Of The Apes’ Review: All Hail Caesar In Summer’s Crown Jewel Blockbuster
Rarely does a movie sequel come along that not only tops what came before but stands alone as a singular motion picture experience. But that is exactly what director and co-writer Matt Reeves has achieved with War For The Planet Of The Apes, the final part of the trilogy that began in 2011 with Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes, directed by Rupert Wyatt, and then continued by Reeves with 2014’s Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes, which moved the critical love and global box… Read
‘Power’ Season 4 Review: ‘Fast & Furious’ Sung Kang Brings More Pedal To Metal
Premiering on June 25 on Starz, the fourth season of Power is a sobering tale of truth and interconnected consequences. Intoxicated simultaneously by new castmembers and higher stakes than before, the Courtney Kemp-created series executive produced by Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson sees the looming threats that have always hung over the New York City-set drama come crashing down to reveal a world of the worst possible situations – which makes for pretty great television.
‘The Beguiled’ Review: Sofia Coppola’s Female-Driven Civil War Story Ratchets Up The Sexual Tension
Probably one of Clint Eastwood’s lesser-known films, the 1971 Civil War drama The Beguiled would at first blush seem an odd choice for a remake by Sofia Coppola, especially since she had never seen the original. But as I say in my video review above, somehow by taking the focus off Eastwood’s wounded Union soldier character and placing it squarely on the rising tensions — sexual and otherwise — caused by his presence in a school for young women in Virginia, it is one… Read
‘1984’ Broadway Review: Olivia Wilde, Tom Sturridge & Reed Birney Revive Orwell’s Grim Tale
It’s entirely possible that producers Scott Rudin and Sonia Friedman – who’ve brought Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillan’s frequently harrowing adaptation of George Orwell’s 1984 to Broadway after three years in London and on the road – meant to parody the punitive Big Brother-like tone with the program insert that accompanies the Playbill. The giveaway is that “101 minutes,” an unsubtle reference to Room 101, the torture chamber described in the 1949 novel and made quite… Read
‘The Mist’ Review: Spike’s Stephen King Adaptation Lost In A Fog
It is hard to see clearly what is going on with The Mist, which premieres on Spike on June 22. Based on a beloved novella by Stephen King from the early 1980s, this latest adaptation initially plays on the horror of the cloud that envelops a Maine community adroitly, but also quickly becomes bogged down in small-town stereotypes.
Unlike the 2007 big-screen version from now ex-The Walking Dead showrunner Frank Darabont, this updated to 2017 Christian Torpe-created… Read
‘Transformers: The Last Knight’ Review: Michael Bay’s Heavy Metal Brigade Bigger & Louder Than Ever
Wednesday is the first official day of summer, which means it is time for more Transformers — just what you have been asking for, right? It actually has been three years since the fourth installment of the Paramount/Hasbro/Michael Bay goldmine, and though Bay once swore he would quit after that one (Age Of Extinction), he couldn’t stay away from his toys. So the filmmaker is back behind the camera once again for The Last Knight, which is just as big, bloated and long (at… Read
‘The Big Sick’ Review: Kumail Nanjiani’s Real-Life Romance Turns Into Summer Comedy Winner
A smash hit at January’s Sundance Film Festival, and picked up there by Amazon and Lionsgate, comedian Kumail Nanjiani’s very personal story of his real-life relationship and journey with his now-wife Emily V. Gordon makes for a movie that should become a word-of-mouth winner this season for adult audiences looking for smart, entertaining and very human entertainment. As I say in my video review (click the link above to watch), playing himself in his own story turns out… Read
‘Broadchurch’ Final-Season Review: Olivia Colman & David Tennant Exit With Grace
Debuting on June 28 on BBC America for its third and final season, Broadchurch is a high-caliber and sure-handed drama which delivers an authentic ending that stays absolutely true to itself and makes for can't-look-away television.
Having already aired in the UK this year and now heading for the U.S., the series starring Olivia Colman and David Tennant exits with true purpose and grace, as I say in my video review above. In fact, I would venture to say that Season 3 of… Read
‘The Book Of Henry’ Review: Cloying Family Drama/Revenge Thriller Never Figures Out What It Wants To Be
Sometimes the best of intentions just don’t work out. That is definitely the case with The Book Of Henry, a complete misfire that unsuccessfully tries to be two different movies and manages to blow both of them. As I say in my video review above, I was really disappointed because first it was directed by Colin Trevorrow, who has proved adept at both smaller (Safety Not Guaranteed) and bigger (Jurassic World) fare, and it features a great cast including Naomi Watts, Sarah… Read
‘Rough Night’ Review: Kate McKinnon Steals Another One In ‘Bridesmaids’-Meets-‘Hangover’ Movie
There is no way you can see the new comedy Rough Night and not compare it to its obvious inspirations — chiefly Bridesmaids (the movie that launched a thousand imitators), The Hangover (ditto), Bachelor Party, Very Bad Things, and even that comic heirloom Weekend At Bernie’s. So while it doesn’t get points for originality, Rough Night does score a lot of laughs even if this particular bachelorette party sometimes sails way over the top in pursuit of them. As I say in my… Read
‘GLOW’ Review: Alison Brie & Marc Maron ’80s Wrestling Dramedy Kicks Butt
The 1980s are a big destination on the cultural landscape nowadays and, after the success of Stranger Things last summer, the Reagan Era is a big deal on Netflix too as the binge-worthy GLOW makes very clear.
Set in 1985 and the spandex-covered world of female wrestling and partially based on the nutty four-season series of the same name, the great June 23-launching GLOW is a ton of big hair, synth soundtrack, neon, killer kitsch and in-the-ring fun. But with all its… Read