‘Pet Sematary’ Review: Trades a Poignant Grief Metaphor for Generic Horror Fodder

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I’ve yet to read Stephen King’s Pet Sematary, but from what I do know about it, it’s a novel all about how grief after the loss of a loved one can take on the form of one’s own worst nightmares. That alone would cover the basics of what defines Stephen King’s stories, for he’s a writer who has always been able to come up with wonderful concepts for horror literature, but they don’t quite always work yet his name has only ever remained popular enough in order to spawn numerous film adaptations over the years. This is the second adaptation of Pet Sematary to grace the screen after Mary Lambert’s 1989 take, with a screenplay by Stephen King himself. Based on the reputation that I’ve already known said film adaptation would have acquired I was hoping that at the very least a new take would feel more enticing but everything that has made the core concept so thoughtful and wonderful is all gone in this version. It came to that point where I don’t really know if this feels anything like what I would imagine Stephen King would be writing, because it only ever really rang as generic horror fodder.

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Miss Sloane – Review

✯✯½

Miss Sloane barely even feels so much like it has something to say, which is one among many of the most disappointing aspects of the film. This Jessica Chastain vehicle, directed by John Madden (who had also directed her in the underrated The Debt) feels like it has something to say, but it doesn’t even have a slight idea how to get its own message across to its viewers. But that’s not the most troubling aspect of Miss Sloane, because it rarely ever feels like a production that’s inviting oneself to come along with its own flow. It isn’t so much like The Big Short in whose case the film is beating down its message with a sense of self-awareness, for Miss Sloane seems to have something agreeable on its outline, then beats down said message without going any further on it. I was hoping for something better, but I’ve only finished Miss Sloane feeling exhausted.

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Rise of the Planet of the Apes – Review

✯✯✯½

I’ve never exactly been a huge Planet of the Apes fan (I do really enjoy the original film, even though the rest never did much for me) yet coming out of the theater from Rise of the Planet of the Apes back when it came out was a thrilling experience. Years of not having seen it only left me feeling that perhaps I was far more impressionable considering how perfectly the original Planet of the Apes film had managed to stand the test of time, and yet as I watched Rupert Wyatt’s reboot of the franchise in Rise of the Planet of the Apes for my first time since then – so much of the joy that I remember having felt seems to have faded away. That’s not to say I dislike Rise of the Planet of the Apes because I still enjoy it well enough as it is, but considering what has only come forth within the future, it doesn’t feel as exciting as it was back in 2011.

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