"Kajillionaire" is the sort of quirky dramedy you'd expect to find coming out of a film festival...it did in fact have its premiere at this year's Sundance Film Festival back in January. There are some delicious performances, and Evan Rachel Wood is simply a powerhouse, but the film ekes by without ever really making an impact.
A terminally ill mother (Susan Sarandon) unites her family together for one last weekend before her planned (illegal) assisted suicide. That's not exactly your "feel good" plot of the year and maybe on its surface, too much of a downer to want to tackle in the year that is 2020. But in "Blackbird," there is a tremendous ensemble doing what they can, trapped in a story that feels dead on arrival.
Charlie Kaufman may very well be better and smarter than us, but man is it annoying when he rubs our faces in his self-proclaimed brilliance. In adapting the 2016 novel by Ian Reed, his "I'm Thinking of Ending Things" is inaccessible, gloriously bland and shamefully pretentious at only a level that Kaufman could ever possibly reach.
Disney's live-action re-make, "Mulan," was supposed to hit theaters back in March...but, you know.
After several delays, it became increasingly apparent that "Mulan" was never make it to the big-screen at all. Instead, putting it on the Disney+ streaming service seemed like a gamble that Disney was ultimately willing to take.
For the hefty cost of $29.99, you can finally watch this new version of "Mulan," if you also happen to be a Disney+ subscriber...or you can wait until December when it will supposedly be available on the service for free.
Side-stepping whether or not this version of "Mulan" is worth $30, I do think that this film would have looked dazzling on the big-screen, even though it still holds its own at home.
I'll start with the headline: I have COVID-19. I tested positive along with my wife and three-year-old son, and life has been brutal, scary and exhausting ever since.
Even still, watching movies from bed has been a saving grace...a much-needed therapeutic that has granted me some level of sanity and feelings of normalcy. My wife and son - thanks be to God or whatever other guiding forces willing to listen - have reacted much more mildly than me thus far...I have definitely gotten the worst of it. And whether this is a momentary plateau, or a sign that I am turning the corner, I wanted to catch up on some of the films that I've been able to view over the past few weeks but haven't quite had the chance to review.
Instead of "full reviews" of each of these films, all with separate articles, I've instead consolidated more shallow dives than usual into each recent film and have lumped them all together into this one piece. I wish I could do more, and give each movie the same thoughtful consideration that I try to bring to all of my written reviews. But I needed to write, for my own sake. And this is hopefully better than nothing.
I hope to be back on track soon, fully invested into this dream job of mine. But in the meantime, please bear with me as I give you a few "drive-by" reactions to some of the latest movies that are seeing release this weekend, or may have been released on past weekends. Here goes it. And thanks for your continued support.
Its title is not as bad as "Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga," but "First Cow" is in the running for worst title of 2020. After seeing it, I'm not sure what else I'd call it though.
When you've achieved Tom Hanks-level status, you expect greatness. Whether that's fair or not, Hanks does have his pick of material at this point in his career, so you know he's going to be invested no matter what he chooses to do. With his latest film, "Greyhound," you can tell that this was a story near-and-dear to him...heck, Tom Hanks doesn't just star in this, he even wrote the screenplay. This just feels sub-par given the production value...it's a big, loud war movie that forgets to make us care about its subjects.
It's horrifying growing old, but time does not fly by quickly in the new film, "Relic."
Based on the book, "The Outpost: An Untold Story of American Valor," by CNN's Jake Tapper, "The Outpost" is an exceptional and stark look at a group of heroes literally forced to fight their way out of a hole...a hole they were placed in by none other than their superior commanders.
If you've never seen "Hamilton," don't fret...you're actually not alone. While it has been an absolute phenomenon since its off-Broadway debut in 2015, the show, its music and its stars have been impossible to avoid ever since. EVERYBODY has at least heard of "Hamilton." And it seems like there aren't too many who haven't seen it.
I confess that not only had I not seen it - until now - but I had managed to avoid any spoilers over the years too. I always imagined I'd see "Hamilton," but I never thought it would be from the comfort of my own home, at least not for the first time. Now, "Hamilton" is being released July 3rd exclusively on Disney+, after the pandemic forced Disney to alter its plans of releasing it in movie theaters later this Fall.
If you're reading this review, you're probably either A), like me, a poor, unfortunate soul that has somehow never seen "Hamilton" and you're curious if this at-home version lives up to the hype, or B), you have already seen "Hamilton" in some way, shape or form, and you're checking to see if you can ever trust another review from me ever again.
Let me say this about "Hamilton": I've never entered into a film with such unbearably high expectations. And I've never left a film having felt more blown away.
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