I Am Mother (*****) the future is then

Keeping the characters to a minimum in no way diminishes the effectiveness of the story. This is dystopian future story telling at its best. It makes us think about more than the story. It makes us think about who we are and what we could be.

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Shaft (*****) is damn right

John Shaft is the urban answer to the motto "Don't Tread on Me." It's a remarkable statement that no doubt has lead many critics who live in big cities to blanch at the apparent crudity espoused by the filmmakers. Now in their 5th film and going on 5 decades. All it really does is show the difference between those who prefer a nanny state and those who'd rather think of it as a distant uncle they see once in a while.

The Dead Don’t Die (**) doesn’t rise

Still, that I don't hate this film is more a tribute to the interesting cast. I keep thinking something good could happen, even though nothing really does. People just show up places, wait around, talk about stuff, then they die.

Under the Silver Lake (***1/2) – Jesus wouldn’t hide a message in a message

"Garfield is good in a performance that would test the limits of any actor. His eyes betray a vulnerability that his actions don't always match. He is clothed in an ignorance, like NEO from The Matrix. He just doesn't have anyone there to guide him as clearly as Morpheus. "

Always Be My Maybe (***1/2) more comedy than romance

"Romantic comedies too often forget the second part of that description. Wong and Park put the emphasis on the comedy and leave the romance to fend for itself."

Godzilla: King of the Monsters (***) – Too much breaking stuff

"This is not a great film. It's barely a good one. The feeling that this is just a placeholder for the real battle coming overwhelms the last half of the film. Once we see images of Kong in passing, it's hard to guess who is going to come out on top in a film with Godzilla's name in the title."

Rocketman (*****) How about a hug?

"This may not ascend to the highs of Bohemian Rhapsody. It deserves to, though. We don't have a martyr here. We have a survivor who moved past the stage of needing love from those who'd never give it to him. What he finds is a way to be his own friend. From there, he woke up to the world and embraced it. As he let it embrace him."

The Perfection: Music Nuts (***1/2)

"The Perfection is one of the few films in which the trailer seems to give it all away, but it really serves to set the viewer up for something entirely different. This is primarily a pleasant surprise. "

Brightburn (***) could be great, but isn’t

"The ride we're given by the plot feels like the New York New York roller coaster ride in Las Vegas when it first came out. Harrowing, herky jerky and it feels like it is not completely safe. Did anyone test the ride ahead of time?"

John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum…if you want peace (***1/2)

This would be much less interesting were it not for the kind, world weary face of the protagonist. He never has much time to recover or explain. He just keeps going taking non-vital shots and delivering death blows after a prolonged series of battles.