The King (***1/2) at least it’s not Shakespeare

Edgerton's Sir John Falstaff is the biggest selling point of The King. It's almost as though he made the film just so he could play so plum a role.

Captain Marvel is reviewed by a 40+ year-old man and his teenage daughter

"Em is excited at the prospects of this film. She looks forward to seeing Captain take over a leadership role with the Avengers. Conversations drift back and forth between characters as she imagines whose place she will supplant. This is not excitement for girl power. It's just a person who enjoys the evolution of the Marvel Universe. Will this supplant her love for Tony, Peter Parker or Loki? Does it have to? Em doesn't think so."

Ready Player One (****) Spielberg remembers how to have fun

"If you have any desire to legitimately smile at a Spielberg film for the first time in decades, see Ready Player One."

Darkest Hour (****) is the other side of Dunkirk

Wright has made a film that plays a good contrast to Christopher Nolan's superior Dunkirk. We see the threat that looms at home before it strikes abroad. So much is at stake, the tension is unbearable, yet Churchill finds a way. Good Lord does he ever. 

Mississippi Grind (****1/2) – Wind it out

Mississippi Grind - 2016 Written and Directed by Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck Starring Ryan Reynolds, Ben Mendelsohn, Sienna Miller, Analeigh Tipton, Alfre Woodard, Robin Weigert, James Toback "How much do you owe?" "A lot." "To who?" "Everyone." This is the rallying cry that brings a burgeoning friendship between Gerry and Curtis to the decision of throwing their lots together and … Continue reading Mississippi Grind (****1/2) – Wind it out

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (****1/2): There is hope. Lot’s of it.

#RogueOne This film makes the film that immediately follows it better. I did not think it was possible. Go see it. Again and again.

Slow West (***) aims for poignant, misses by that much

If one looks past the silliness of the story and takes a closer look at the heart, it's not a bad film. It's clear what Maclean wants to do, even if he doesn't know how to do it and stay within the bounds of a consistent story. For now, it is nice that he has the opportunity to hone his skill with so much talent around.

Exodus Gods and Kings (****): Moses, Ramses II, God and his Angels

Exodus - Gods and Kings (2014) Directed by Ridley Scott Starring Christian Bale, Joel Edgerton, John Turturro, Aaron Paul, Ben Mendelsohn, María Valverde, Sigourney Weaver, Ben Kingsley, Andrew Tarbet, Isaac Andrews Screenplay Adam Cooper, Bill Collage, Jeffrey Caine, Steven Zaillian The prospect of a big budget film based on The Holy Bible is immediately deserving of skepticism these days. For some, like Aronofsky, use it to "explore … Continue reading Exodus Gods and Kings (****): Moses, Ramses II, God and his Angels

The Place Beyond the Pines: Eva Mendes is still beautiful

The Place Beyond The Pines - 2013 Director Derek Cianfrance Starring Ryan Gosling, Bradley Cooper, Eva Mendes, Ray Liotta, Ben Mendelsohn, Rose Byrne, Mahershala Ali, Bruce Greenwood, Harris Yulin, Dane DeHaan and Emory Cohen Screenplay by Cianfrance, Ben Coccio, Darius Marder There is a scene early in The Place Beyond the Pines in which Luke is told by the grandmother of a child he never … Continue reading The Place Beyond the Pines: Eva Mendes is still beautiful

Trespass: Released in theaters, but feels like straight to video

Trespass - 2011 Directed by Joel Schumacher Starring Nicolas Cage, Nicole Kidman, Cam Giganet, Jordana Spiro, Ben Mendelsohn, Liana Liberato, Dash Mihok, Nico Tortorella, Emily Meade Screenplay by Eli Richbourg, Karl Gajdusek The most interesting fact about Trespass is not the teaming of Cage, Kidman and Schumacher.  This is not an artistic high point for any of … Continue reading Trespass: Released in theaters, but feels like straight to video