Netflix The Haunting of Hill House (*****): We water that seed

The Haunting of Hill House - 2018 Director Mike Flanagan Teleplay Flanagan, Liz Phang, Scott Kosar, Merideth Averill, Jeff Howard, Charise Castro Smith, Rebecca Klingel based on the book by Shirley Jackson Starring Michiel Huisman, Carla Gugino, Henry Thomas, Elizabeth Reaser, Oliver Jackson-Cohen, Kate Siegel, Victoria Pedretti, Lulu Wilson, Mckenna Grace, Paxton Singleton, Julian Hilliard, Violet McGraw, Timothy Hutton, Robert Longstreet, Catherine Parker Mike Flanigan has worked beyond … Continue reading Netflix The Haunting of Hill House (*****): We water that seed

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First Man in IMAX (****1/2) Soul Deep in Space

#FirstMan "This film is necessary for one to understand the reach of humans. From out of the dark of a life lost so young, hope springs so forcefully. It's more than a flag that we put on that moon. It's all of our hopes and dreams."

A Star Is Born (*****) Flawless Imperfection

#astarisborn "If you are tired of the trope where one star rises and another star falls, I think you should still see this film. It's better than any film I have seen this year by a long shot. That's likely because it's filled with several moments that are just one weakness shy of being perfect. Like life."

Malevolent (***) is a building block for Netflix

Malevolent - 2018 Director Olaf de Fleur Screenplay Ben Ketai, Eva Konstantopoulos Starring Florence Pugh, Celia Imrie, Ben Lloyd-Hughes, Scott Chambers, Georgina Bevan The never-ending stream of films being released by Netflix often seem to have the air of rejection by other studios. There is also a slew of smaller films that have solid, if lesser known talent. One such … Continue reading Malevolent (***) is a building block for Netflix

Venom (***1/2) has some juice

#venom Somewhere between the drawing board and the actuality of the screen a great film was lost. What is left is a good film that has enough pieces on the cutting room floor, the home release should be interesting...Venom could surprise at the box office. It's better than the standard is for hero films these days, even if it's not all that great. It makes its viewer want more. 

A Simple Favor (*****) deserves another

#asimplefavor "This film has legs. Like it's story, no one expected it, but it will leave its viewers entertained and rewarded. "

Hell Fest (**1/2) – Surprise! It doesn’t suck!

#hellfest "...The success of the scenarios with which the characters are dispatched varies. There are some pretty good scares and some surprising misses. Then there's some dumb stuff to balance it out.  Whether this is good or not depends on how you think the good compares to the bad. For this viewer, the last scene wins points for originality. It's creepy as hell, too..."

Mandy (***1/2) has a terrible beauty

If all things are fair and square, there will be a good, long career for Panos Cosmatos and his Cinematographer, Benjamin Loeb. The images they create in the time frame of 2 hours could last in the minds of viewers for a lifetime. The story may hold less complication than the images deserve, but together with Nicolas Cage back to his inspired best, the effect sustains. Mandy is one of the more unsettling pieces of modern horror since Rob Zombie introduced us to the Firefly family.

The Predator (***1/2) gets chopped up

The Predator is enjoyable, but it sure is fast, hard and choppy. Many of the scenes that might help build pull the story along for the slow and dimwitted are excised in favor of seeing people get sliced in half and repeatedly skewered by those massive retractable claws. Whether it's a fair trade or not depends on how many times you need to see the same time of exposition that Black seems to abhor.

The NuN (***): Can’t quite live up to its incredible promise.

There are some good moments here, but in general, this film doesn't measure up to any of the previous efforts of Hardy or the Conjuring films. It feels like a placeholder, when it is clear the crowds that are going to swarm to this film expected a tentpole.