E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial Review: A Gentle Giant

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What is there to say about a film that for many years was the highest grossing film ever? A film that is universally beloved? A film that has been covered and studied and dissected endlessly?

Well I saw E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial this week in IMAX so I’m going to try. But I’m not going to add much new to the discussion of a film that’s exactly correctly rated in our culture. It’s a timeless classic. And I have no issue with it.

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‘Everything Everywhere All at Once’ Review: So Much Said, So Little Time

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The directing duo Daniels (Dan Kwan and Daniel Scheinert) make their second feature film together with Everything Everywhere All at Once, whose title may just as well be an apt descriptor for what the viewers can expect themselves to experience from watching it. In fact, a film like Everything Everywhere All at Once seems to try and reach out as many people, going from those who were fascinated by the concept of the multiverse to film lovers, and maybe even to the inner child in most of us, for the ride that’s provided goes through most facets of life, from the happy to the mundane, while being thoughtful and ever so frantic. But underneath all of that, there’s something so much sweeter. If anything, it best states the film as a labour of love, all in a package that’s only set to overflow.

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‘Castle in the Sky’ Review: The Adventurous Spirits in Miyazaki’s Vision

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The first film to be released under the Studio Ghibli name, Castle in the Sky may be among Hayao Miyazaki’s more straightforward films but that never takes away from how thoroughly exciting it is from beginning to end. Much like Spirited Away and Kiki’s Delivery Service, Castle in the Sky was a film that had been a favourite of mine when I was very young but it was also one that I never came back to until just recently. As I watch the film again as an adult, Castle in the Sky doesn’t only hit me again with that same magic like it did as a kid but I’m still in awe at how perfectly constructed it is – which is just about everything I could ever want from any of Miyazaki’s films.

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‘The Invisible Man’ Review: A Modern Spin on a Classic Horror Story with a Very Real Looming Fear

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Leigh Whannell’s spin on the classic H. G. Wells story initially started off as another entry in what was supposed to be Universal’s failed “Dark Universe,” which sought to bring together many of cinema’s most iconic horror monsters into their own shared universe. But after The Mummy had failed and said universe has only remained shelved ever since, Blumhouse took interest in reviving this project – turning it into a small-budget horror like all their most notable releases and what came forth from that is more than just a new contextualization of the Wells tale. The Invisible Man is every bit as terrifying as it can also be fun, but seeing what Whannell could do with the Wells classic to adapt it for a modern audience only further strengthens the film’s impact.

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‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Review: A Not-So-Grand Finale For the Skywalker Saga

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It’s finally over, the Skywalker saga that began in 1977 with George Lucas’s Star Wars (or otherwise known as A New Hope), has finally ended with J. J. Abrams returning behind the camera to bring forth The Rise of Skywalker. One would already find themselves wondering where could the saga have gone following Rian Johnson’s radical approach to the series with The Last Jedi, which had divided many fans for betraying their image of the characters or the approach after having been reintroduced to them in The Force Awakens. In an attempt to hand the series back to those fans following the reception of The Last Jedi, The Rise of Skywalker concludes this long saga on a sour note.

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‘The Platform’ Review: A Satire Most Likely to Ruin Your Meal

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Perhaps the best word of advice prior to watching The Platform would be to watch it without having eaten a huge meal before viewing it, because this isn’t so much a delicious film to leave sitting in your mind after the images that it shows you. This isn’t a film for those with a weak stomach but in how Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia would show you even the most disgusting aspects of humanity on the spot, The Platform already feels like a daring experiment too. In fact I have not quite seen a satire much like this, one that feels so unafraid to delve into the worst of humanity but also one that blends that perfectly with entertainment value in order to create a bizarrely disgusting delicacy.

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‘The Vast of Night’ TIFF Review: Andrew Patterson’s Directorial Debut Transports You to a Greater Mystery

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The Vast of Night already carries something ominous along the way based on the title alone, but if anything else best sums up what makes this film a perfect Rod Serling tribute, all the evidence you need is present in there alone. There’s nothing more vast about the atmosphere that makes up the nighttime, because for some you can already say that it’s a beautiful thought – and yet for others it also makes for great nightmare fuel. Andrew Patterson’s directorial debut is one that mixes all of those elements in order to create what is also the perfect Twilight Zone tribute film, and it also leaves a lingering effect on the viewers.

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‘Children of Men’ Review: Searching for Hope in the Darkest of Times

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When talking about the greatest science fiction films of the 21st century, for me only one film comes to mind when talking about the very best of such and that film is none other than Alfonso Cuarón’s Children of Men. Although its setting into the future may not have exactly predicted the turn of events in our world to come, there’s still something scary about the fact that we as a species have come so dangerously close to approaching the chaotic world that Children of Men shows us especially if the political climate only ever encourages such mayhem. Worth noting is the fact that Children of Men had barely made enough money to recoup its budget back when it came out, only being reflective of what it feels to be ignored when a message so important needs to find its way to get out. You’ll only watch a film like this wondering how come it actually happens to be so prescient, but at the same time you’d never want any of this to feel like it could become our own reality. You don’t ever want to see something like this happening, and you can continue telling yourself that it won’t ever become the truth, but that’s what makes Children of Men stick its landing so beautifully.

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‘Lucy in the Sky’ TIFF Review: Noah Hawley’s Directorial Debut Falls Short of the Diamonds

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Picture yourself in a boat on a river with tangerine trees and marmalade skies, somebody calls you, you answer quite slowly, Natalie Portman arrives with kaleidoscope eyes. Television legend Noah Hawley of Fargo and Legion promises as much with his feature film directorial debut, but even the thought of a film about a woman’s journey to outer space and back sounds too good to be true after fittingly being named for a Beatles song. Yet as Lucy rises up to the sky, you’re wondering where all the diamonds are, for Lucy in the Sky doesn’t shine as much as you’d want something that sounds like a jewel to do so. It isn’t a bad movie per se, but given the sort of potential that this could have been considering the talent involved, Lucy in the Sky should have been a diamond – but it just never quite gets to that level.

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‘Color Out of Space’ TIFF Review: Nicolas Cage Goes Wild in this Dazzling H. P. Lovecraft Take

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Horror auteur Richard Stanley’s first full-length directorial effort in twenty seven years since his firing from The Island of Dr. Moreau, Color Out of Space is possibly the best adaptation of H. P. Lovecraft to have graced the screen not to be directed by Stuart Gordon. There’s no better way to sum up what one can expect from an adaptation of H. P. Lovecraft starring Nicolas Cage than to say it is one among his most beautiful looking films and even one of his most unhinged works to date. One can only set their expectations high up when seeing the possibilities of what a combination like Nicolas Cage and H. P. Lovecraft can bring out, but knowing what it is that Richard Stanley was able to bring to the screen with such a combination, the results are far beyond what one could ever comprehend. If there’s anything else worth noting, here’s hoping that we get to see Richard Stanley get to work behind the camera again far more often in the future.

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