Saturday, March 25, 2017

Beauty and the Beast, The Belko Experiment, Raw, Kedi Reviews

Beauty and the Beast
Dir. Bill Condon
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Continuing Disney's redundant live action-ing of their back catalogue of animated classics, Beauty and the Beast is yet another remake meant to nostalgically prod audiences into theaters like livestock into a corral. Directed by Bill Condon (Mr. Holmes, Dreamgirls) and starring a post-Potter Emma Watson as everyone's favorite book-reading, yak-loving princess, Belle, this movie sticks extremely close to its beloved source material, slavishly reproducing exact songs, lines of dialogue, and even camera movements and edits as the original Disney film. Because of this, Beauty and the Beast may be the most outright pointless movie of the year, seeming to exist for the sole factor of making easy money for the House of Mouse. But still, Mrs. Potts knows what's up when she sings "Tale as old as Time": despite its unoriginality, I still found myself getting swept up in many of the musical numbers and dazzling set pieces. Despite my best efforts to hate on this movie, Beauty and the Beast is a competent, beautifully-crafted production that delivers the magic, even if it's repackaged magic.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Logan, Kong: Skull Island, The Red Turtle, Land of Mine Reviews

Dir. James Mangold
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After 17 years and 8 movies in the X-Men franchise, Hugh Jackman's (apparently) final outing as Wolverine pulls no punches - other than literal ones of course. Thanks to the smash success of Fox's R-Rated superhero gamble last year with Deadpool, James Mangold was for once able to make the Wolverine movie fans have waited for; no longer subjugated to PG-13 bloodless battle sequences, we finally get to see the realistically gory consequences of a furious man with 8-inch metal blades sticking out of his fists. Luckily, though, Logan isn't just an excuse for mindless violence - it's also a well-conceived family drama, a dark sci-fi western, a tragic elegy on mortality, and an overall great send-off for an iconic character.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Get Out, A Cure for Wellness, Toni Erdmann, The Salesman Reviews

Get Out
Dir. Jordan Peele
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Meeting the in-laws is always a situation filled with anxiety. In his directorial debut, Jordan Peele (the comedic mastermind behind Comedy Central's sketch show Key & Peele), uses those same relatable discomforts to make a socially-conscious horror film with a lot more on its mind than cheap thrills. In a story that feels like Guess Who's Coming to Dinner meets Rosemary's Baby, Get Out follows a young interracial couple, Chris (Daniel Kaluuya) and Rose (Allison Williams), who are on a weekend getaway to her parents' house. At first, Chris reads her family's overly accommodating behavior to be nervous, "white liberal" attempts to deal with their daughter's relationship, but as the weekend continues, it starts to become clear that something disturbing is going on under the surface of this seemingly "woke" family. This movie not only works as a fun horror flick, but it's filled with layers of social commentary and subtext that makes Get Out one of the most thoughtful and well-written entries into the horror genre I've seen in a very long time. Despite being a "comedy guy" and first-time filmmaker, Jordan Peele has undoubtedly wrote and directed a modern cult classic.

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