Movie Reviews

Movie Review: Vivarium (2019)

School teacher Gemma (Imogen Poots, “I Kill Giants”) and gardener, Tom (Jesse Eisenberg, “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice”) are a young, contented couple looking to settle down and buy their first home. While out driving one afternoon they happen upon a showroom with a strange display of model houses, overseen by an eccentric man…

Movie Review: Spenser Confidential (2020)

It is a reunion of sorts for those connected to the witless cop caper Spenser Confidential. First, the film’s star, Mark Wahlberg, returns home to his beloved Boston as the famed native son struts his reckless stuff around Beantown. Second, the film’s director, Peter Berg, reunites with Wahlberg, his “Mile 22,” “Patriots Games,” “Deepwater Horizon,”…

Movie Review: Weathering With You (2019)

“Everywhere is the wind of heaven; round and above all are boundless sea and sky, infinite space and a great silence” — Katherine Routledge The familiar saying attributed to Charles Dudley Warner that “Everybody complains about the weather, but nobody does anything about it” is turned upside down by Japanese director Makoto Shinkai (“Your Name”)…

Movie Review: Escape from Pretoria (2020)

Francis Annan’s Escape from Pretoria describes the real-life adventures of political captives Tim Jenkin and Steven Lee as they attempt to leave the titular prison before their sentences are up. Set in the apartheid era of South Africa, the film spends most of its run-time within the walls of the prison itself, leaning on a…

Movie Review: The Invisible Man (2020)

The Invisible Man has been the cinematic subject of effects extravaganzas (most notably James Whale’s 1933 adaptation of H.G. Wells’ classic novel), wartime propaganda (“Invisible Agent”), deadpan comedy (“Memoirs of an Invisible Man”), and psychosexual satire (“Hollow Man”), but rarely has he ever led a straight horror film. This is the hole that filmmaker Leigh…

Movie Review: The Hunt (2020)

The horror genre relies, to an extent, on the utilization of familiar tropes. The use of these tropes can reward and subvert expectations, and how these tropes are used contributes to the film’s effectiveness. Audience familiarity is both an opportunity and a difficulty for filmmakers: Give the audience what they want and they welcome it,…

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