‘1917’ Review: A Faceless, if Harrowing War Experience

✯✯✯

This WWI film directed by Sam Mendes is a visceral theatrical experience, one that feels ready to place you on the battlefield, whether you are ready or not. It’s also one that I was feeling skeptical about because it has also been way too long since I was last wowed by a mainstream war film from recent memory, but the idea that Sam Mendes were to make one to look as if it were in one continuous long take became the most intriguing selling point for me. And for every bit as it is the film’s main selling point, 1917 doesn’t seem to have all that much to offer beyond that. Which isn’t to say that the film is bad, but where it peaks in the technical department it seems to be lacking elsewhere.

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Shazam! Review: Funny and Innocent on the Outside, Dark but Sweet on the Inside

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Almost a different entity entirely from the rest of the films of the DC Extended Universe but it also shows itself to be for the best in the case of Shazam!. It’s the sort of film that one can look at in their late teens, or maybe even early adult years to allow oneself to think about how much they would have wanted a film of this sort to have come out when they were younger because it stands for just about everything that made these points in life so wonderful for ourselves. Yet besides being a nice little crack at comedy from the DC Extended Universe, it’s also a film that never feels afraid to enter darker territory in order to develop a sense of growth in its eager leads. Though that’s only the least of what made Shazam’s journey every bit as endearing as it was in here. It’s a pure delight because it’s never afraid to just embrace the kid inside, especially in its own lead character, but also because of how surprisingly sweet it is as a tale about families coming together, and better yet, what defines a loving family.

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Kingsman: The Golden Circle – Review

✯½

I never felt that the first Kingsman film deserved the praise it received so the idea of a sequel coming this soon had little to no appeal to me. Even less appealing was the idea that Matthew Vaughn was returning to direct based on how he has previously blended action and comedy from another Mark Millar comic (Kick-Ass, which I also find rather off-putting to a degree), so my expectations were never high. And even with my expectations placed at a low, I thought to myself about how much I’d rather sit through the first Kingsman again because it seemed like a more focused piece of work right next to this sequel. Not that it makes the first film any better than it is, but all the better aspects of it shine out when looking at how much of it is done far worse in this sequel.

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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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Grimsby – Review

It’s been a long while since a movie actually managed to make me physically sick, but Grimsby (known as The Brothers Grimsby in some areas) succeeded in doing so. At its best, Grimsby is a rather boring film, but at its very worst, the lowbrow humour is enough to put off a viewer like myself not only as it was utterly stupid, but the imagery was absolutely disgusting and it’s the sort of crassness that leaves me madder as the film keeps going on. Even at only 82 minutes, Grimsby‘s display of poor taste is enough to leave one angered at all of its pointlessness, it’s embarrassing. Continue reading →