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Wednesday, January 16, 2019

[6.75/10] Cargo (2018)

Cargo (2018)

Quick Review: A fresh take on the 'apocalypse' sub-genre, set against the desolated, yet  hauntingly pretty Australian outback, which ends up being the film's visual driving force, "Cargo" is not your typical zombie movie, as it focuses more on the humans, rather than the horror or the action, with the end result being a touching post apocalyptic journey about loss, hope, and survival, led by Freeman's determined character, for whom saving the life of his child means faith in the future.

[6.25/10] The Quake (2018)

The Quake (2018)

Quick Review: An entertaining, if slightly contrived follow-up to "The Wave", this Norwegian disaster flick might not be as effective as the original, and much like the latter it takes quite some time to warm up, which time it utilizes not only to build suspense, but also to flesh out its characters, however, as soon as the actual quake kicks in, "The Quake" becomes a hyper tense experience of destruction and survival, visually enhanced by some realistic, hard-to-fault special effects.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

[5.75/10] Pledge (2019)

Pledge (2019)

Quick Review: Delivering enough fun, tension, thrills, and violence for its short and sweet running time, "Pledge" is a heavy on concept, but light on story a-fraternity-pledging- turned-into-tormenting-terror torture porn dark comedy with no real plot, despite its attempts to add value to itself with a clever twist in the end, but despite its shallowness and the pretty sub-par acting skills, Robbin's third feature is hardly boring, and succeeds in benefiting from its cool and very creepy setting.

Sunday, January 13, 2019

[6.50/10] Wildlife (2018)

Wildlife (2018)

Quick Review: Worth watching for the flawless acting alone, especially the expressive, very natural female lead performance by Mulligan, who conveys broad variety of emotions effortlessly, Paul Dano's debut is as much an adultery domestic drama about an innocent boy witnessing the downfall of his parents marriage as it is a sad and heartfelt coming-of-age story of premature growth, portraying the difficulties of poverty, set against the authentic backdrop of 1960s Montana town.

[5.50/10] Rust Creek (2019)

Rust Creek (2019)

Quick Review: It impresses with solid acting from a largely unknown cast, a decent direction, and some strong technical qualities such as scenery and cinematography, but in spite of these positives and the grim story's reasonable plausibility, "Rust Creek" never quite reaches the suspense it's supposed to, as the tension is often killed by some overextended scenes of dialogues, an unsatisfactory violence, and the one-note persecutors' overall lack of intimidating presence.

Saturday, January 12, 2019

[7.00/10] Beautiful Boy (2018)

Beautiful Boy (2018)

Quick Review: A bitter depiction of drug addiction, driven by the rough, yet genuine relationship between a dope addict teen and his struggling father, both acted strongly by Carell and Chalamet, "Beautiful Boy" is a touch journey through dependency, rehab, sobriety, and depression that gets more and more dark, sad, and devastating as the fact-based story unfolds, revealing many grim details around this terrible 'curse', and how it affects those who suffer from it as well as their loved ones.

Friday, January 11, 2019

[5.75/10] The Old Man & the Gun (2018)

The Old Man & the Gun (2018)

Quick Review: Redford truly owns Forrest Tucker -- the real person he portrays in what's said to be his last ever performance in this character-driven, based on actual events heist dramedy with a touch of lighthearted romance, but despite that and the film's warm retro visual tone, "The Old Man" is a thrill-free affair about a polite gentleman robbing banks with a smile on his face, that's too laid-back and sluggishly-paced to be gripping or enjoyable.


Thursday, January 10, 2019

[7.50/10] Ralph Breaks the Internet [3D] (2018)

Ralph Breaks the Internet [3D] (2018)

Quick Review: Smartly upgrading its 'arcade'' concept by entering the infinite world of internet and flashing even more dazzlingly colorful visuals than the original, "Ralph Breaks the Internet" is delightfully busy in looks, and amusingly referential in nature, featuring everything from car racing video games and Disney princesses to social media and pop-up ads, but its heart lies in the sweet, frank and poignant friendship between Ralph and the lively Vanellope.

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

[6.75/10] Second Act (2018)

Second Act (2018)

Quick Review: Sure, it is contrived and a bit all over the place, but that aside, "Second Act" is a charming, pleasurable, and feel-good comedy about self-doubt and self-belief that has enough heart to touch you, and enough funny gags, raunchy humor, and amusing situations to make you laugh, and though its intentions to make you believe that 'sky is the limit' do not always work, the movie still inspires confidence, thanks to J Lo's naturally powerful charisma as the down-to-earth Maya.
 

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

[6.00/10] The Vanishing (2019)

The Vanishing (2019)

Quick Review: Unveiling in details the disturbing supposed-to-be-real events around the Flannan Mystery in a grim fashion, "The Vanishing" is a mystery only in its premise, which takes away from the suspense, but thanks to the isolated setting, a few unpredictable twists here and there, the increasingly intense relationship between the three characters, and Butler's unsettling turn, this sad and quietly intriguing, albeit slow-moving Irish drama still delivers a few solid shocks, chills, and thrills.

Monday, January 7, 2019

[7.75/10] Green Book (2018)

Green Book (2018)

Quick Review: Equal parts frank, genuine, funny, and touching, and featuring some of the best acting of 2018, with Mortensen's flawless turn as the flawed Tony being the driving force, the set-in-the-'60s road movie "Green Book" tells the heartfelt real-life tale of an unexpected friendship between two men of different class, race, background, outlook, and with entirely opposite personalities, who complement each other so naturally and develop a bond so strong, it's extraordinary to witness.

[5.00/10] How It Ends (2018)

How It Ends (2018)

Quick Review: Straightforward and lacking any twists or turns, ironically enough, it's too easy to predict how "How It Ends" is going to end, which is never a good thing, and despite Whitaker's devoted turn and James' okay performance, this violent and pretty illogical disaster movie lacks the proper post-apocalyptic feel so important for a genre film such as this one, becoming more of a 'road trip with the grumpy military father' affair, rather than a taut thriller that will keep you interested.

Sunday, January 6, 2019

[6.50/10] Cam (2018)

Cam (2018)

Quick Review: Smart, refreshing, and highly original in both premise and execution, this psychological tech-horror successfully represents the fear of losing our manufactured online presence, but also exposes in curious details the obsessed lives of  'cam girls', and though it refuses to provide a proper explanation in the end, "Cam" is a modern creep- fest with outrageous subject, which offers visceral thrills and a surreal story full of paradoxes that make it all the more provocative.

[4.00/10] Iceman: The Time Traveller (2018)

Iceman: The Time Traveller (2018)

Quick Review: This time set in the past for a change, "Iceman 2" has some surprisingly pretty production design, but for a cheesy 'time travel' flick, this sequel is too melodramatic and goes in a way overly serious direction with the Japanese invasion subject it decides to involve in its ho-hum fun-free humorless plot, not to mention it's nearly devoid of any action, featuring just one continuous swordplay fight in the end that works thanks to Yen's mastery.

Saturday, January 5, 2019

[8.00/10] The Favourite (2018)

The Favourite (2018)

Quick Review: Shining with its lush and truly exquisite period production design that contrasts beautifully with its grim essence, "The Favorite" is a darkly peculiar, but also delightfully melodramatic and viciously amusing lesbian love triangle of a story about rivalry, dominance, sexual seduction and masterful manipulation, having Yorgos Lanthimos' signature oddball style written all over it, and driven powerfully by the stellar female lead trio, with Colman stealing the show as the monstrous queen.

[5.00/10] Hell Fest (2018)

Hell Fest (2018)

Quick Review: Neither bloody, nor suspenseful, let alone scary, "Hell Fest" is more of a snooze-fest, as it's a rather pointless 'masked killer' softcore slasher about a bunch of annoying teen folks getting stalked at a Halloween carnival, but at least this mediocre attempt at a fright flick has some production qualities about it, with the horror theme park it is set in being pretty atmospheric, and at times creepy enough to add some 'fun factor' to the otherwise tedious and forgettable plot-line.

Friday, January 4, 2019

[7.25/10] Aquaman [IMAX 3D] (2018)

Aquaman [3D] (2018)

Quick Review: Soaked with cheesy dialogues, soggy humor, and vapid plot devices, this aquatic superhero adventure is a bit fishy script-wise, in spite of its 'old school romp' type of style, but what saves "Aquaman" from sinking down, beside Momoa's masculinity and Heard's eye-candy looks, is the breathtakingly rich and colorful underwater world of Atlantis, the imaginative, superbly-crafted 3D and special effects, and the swanky fight sequences, enhanced by some innovative camera work.

Thursday, January 3, 2019

[7.00/10] Black Mirror: Bandersnatch (2018)

Black Mirror: Bandersnatch (2018)

Quick Review: The interactive way of narration offering varied options may be too convoluted for some, as it requires big focus, but those who dig the mindfuck type of storytelling, as well as the fans of the TV show will find "BM: Bandersnatch" to be a compelling cyber horror experience devoid of predictability that takes its 'mirror dimensions' concept to a new level, and fulfills its 'gimmicky' video game premise in a truly unique and philosophical meta-style.