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Monday, July 31, 2017

[3.25/10] Phoenix Forgotten (2017)

Phoenix Forgotten (2017)

Quick Review: Part documentary, part "X-Files" wannabe mystery, and shot in the well-known and worn out 'found footage' style, and terribly so, "Phoenix Forgotten" is very soon to be forgotten for various reasons -- generic, constantly  uneventful, and amateurishly-acted, this UFO horror doesn't have any right to be called such, as it is never chilling, or even close to suspenseful, not to mention it's so unattractive to look at, it hurts the eyes, and it is the poor flair and tacky direction to blame.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

[6.75/10] Mein Blind Date Mit Dem Leben (2017)

Mein Blind Date Mit Dem Leben (2017)

Quick Review: Inspiring, feel-good, and celebrating the power of human spirit, this dramedy may deal with a tough subject about blindness, but its positive attitude and uplifitng vibe never allow it to seem manipulative, or to come across as melodramatic. The film succeeds due to Ullmann's charming performance as the driven young man who never give ups on his dreams in spite of his disability, as well as the endearing friendship with his sassy colleague.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

[8.25/10] Raw (2017)

Raw (2017)

Quick Review: If you're hungry for a horror film that's as unsettling and gory, as it's clever and visceral, this is the proper cinematic meal for you, best consumed as its title suggests. A coming-of-age story like no other, "Raw" grows from quietly innocent to rabidly sexual, never losing its grim edge, getting a lot more twisted and gruesome as it unfolds, and peaking at a jarring finale that makes perfect sense. The tasteful style, compelling plotting, and faultless acting make it all the more captivating.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

[3.50/10] The Gracefield Incident (2017)

The Gracefield Incident (2017)

Quick Review: When you combine two tired horror sub-genres, namely 'found footage' and 'alien invasion', and choose so familiar setting such as 'cabin in the woods', it's hard to end up with a successful result, and this is exactly the case with this one. Derivative, cheap, poorly-made, and featuring cheesy aliens, and stupid characters who act illogically, "The Gracefield Incident" is as scary as a walk in the park, despite its shocker of an opening sequence.

Monday, July 24, 2017

[6.25/10] A Family Man (2017)

A Family Man (2017)

Quick Review: Driven by Butler's workaholic character who's very torn between his business goals and the needs of his family, "A Family Man" is a conflict between ambitions and emotions that depicts the struggles and of its protagonist in a believable way, even if the story gets inevitably manipulative from the point it takes a dramatic turn. Though predictable the films succeeds for what it is due to its movingly genuine characters, and its ability to take your emotions on a roller-coaster ride.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

[7.50/10] Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets [3D] (2017)

Valerian [3D] (2017)

Quick Review: Busy on the eyes, but easy on the brain, Luc Besson's CGI-laden sci-fi extravaganza has a lot going on about itself, visually, but he balances it out with a no-brainer plot, with the end result being a fun space saga which never takes itself overly seriously -- wildly imaginative, "Valerian" flashes high-end "Avatar" -like technology, and great creature effects that will carry you into a new world. DeHaan is not a charismatic enough lead, but Delevingne shows some sassy personality.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

[6.50/10] Dunkirk (2017)

Dunkirk (2017)

Quick Review: For a story so dear to Nolan's heart, his passion doesn't fully translate to the screen: capably shot, if narratively disjointed and far from thrilling, the film's brisk camera work, crisp visuals, and great sound effects more than impress, and the overly intensified music score aims to enhance the dramatic impact, but such is often lacking, plus, the non- protagonist approach makes it hard to bond with the heroes, despite the strong cast. "Dunkirk" underwhelms, having not enough soul.

Friday, July 21, 2017

[6.50/10] Handsome Devil (2017)

Handsome Devil (2017)

Quick Review: It suffers from the same cliches and stereotypes most high school dramedies about misfits do, and it's far from consistent, but the delightful "Handsome Devil" has irresistable Irish charms about itself, and most importantly it's crafted with warmness, passion, and spirit. And, yes, the ginger protagonist is sweet and sympathetic, but the chemistry he shares with his roommate, who's coming-of-age story is even further touching and heartfelt, is the actual driving force of this film.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

[4.75/10] Going in Style (2017)

Going in Style (2017)

Quick Review: Despite the hugely gifted veteran cast, all of whom do a great job portraying the sympathetic and likable retirees-turned-robbers, ironically, "Going in Style" does not have much of a style, both plot-wise, and execution-wise. Unappealingly plain looking, directed with zero zest or flair, and predictable from start to finish, this comedy not only fails to deliver any memorable laughs, and proper wit, but it entirely wastes the talent of its big stars, providing them a lazy script to work with.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

[6.25/10] New Trial (2017)

New Trial (2017)

Quick Review: Don't get deceived by the title, as "New Trial" is by no means a courtroom drama -- it's an intimate look at the inconsistent, yet often affective relationship between an aspiring lawyer and a former 10- year prisoner wrongly accused for murder, as well as at the emotional and mental breakdown of the latter. The main characters are likable, the flashbacks-filled plot structure works well, and the entire story is moving, if way overdramatic at times, but the humor borders on goofy.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

[6.00/10] Alibi.com (2017)

Alibi.com (2017)

Quick Review: Very refreshing and original, if not always as hilarious as it intends to be, this French comedy seems immoral and indecent at first, but grows a lot sweeter as the story unfolds, showing what cheating can lead to, mostly in a funny and tricky manner. Taking place in some pretty nice locations, and featuring lots of amusing performances, the raunchy "Alibi.com" is fast-paced, lively, and never tiresome, constantly throwing curveballs and putting its characters in outrageous situations.

Monday, July 17, 2017

[7.00/10] To the Bone (2017)

To the Bone (2017)

Quick Review: Equally as gripping and credible, as it's vitally important, "To the Bone" is an insightful look at the struggles that people with eating disorders are facing up in their fight with the illness, as well as the scary tendency to give up and lose it. This drama may be thematically difficult, but the positive, hopeful, and often humorous approach never allows it to become depressing. Collin's turn as the rebellious, if fragile Eli makes you genuinely care for her, and the supporting cast delivers.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

[4.00/10] Blind (2017)

Blind (2017)

Quick Review: As contrived as it's sappy, and sadly neither particularly romantic nor very moving, "Blind" is uses its long-time-popular leads in its attempt to evoke some emotions in the audience and involve them in the corny love story, but you have to be blind not to see the cheesiness written all over the film. The lack of real chemistry between Baldwin and Moore further affects the movie, but the latter plays a likable character at least. The black student sub-story is the only watchable part.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

[8.00/10] War for the Planet of the Apes [3D] (2017)

War for the Planet of the Apes [3D] (2017)

Quick Review: Technically superior and more emotionally affecting than the last two, yet slower, less thrilling, and not as action-packed, "WftPotA" is more of a battle rather than a war, but that barely takes away from its tensity. Visually impeccable, somber in tone, crafted with thought, heart, and precision, and yet again driven by Serkis' powerhouse performance as Caesar, this is a grand, biblically-inspired finale that manifests one of the slickest effects ever.

Friday, July 14, 2017

[7.25/10] The Lost City of Z (2017)

The Lost City of Z (2017)

Quick Review: Utilizing the glorious Amazon jungle as a lavish backdrop for its intriguing expedition story-line about exploring ancient civilizations, complemented by an affecting family sub-plot, the intelligently-written and realistically adventurous "The Lost City of Z" is as much about passion, drive, and commitment, as it's about sacrifice. Hunnam's remarkable lead performance drives the film with the help of the secondary cast, and the fuzzy filters and yellowish tinge give the visuals a period vibe.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

[6.50/10] Lady Macbeth (2017)

Lady Macbeth (2017)

Quick Review: Helmed by Oldroyd, who's simplistic approach and subtle direction contrast against the dark essence of the source material, and led by Pugh's strong performance, "Lady Macbeth" is an involving story revolving around a scandalous, grim love affair filled with lustful passion, but also a fine portrayal of the title character, and her devious, feminist persona. The maid's sub-plot tends to overshadow the central one, and the pacing is quite slow, but the film never loses its intensity.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

[4.75/10] Inconceivable (2017)

Inconceivable (2017)

Quick Review: The steady pacing and solid production values make it watchable, but this 1990s-like been- there-done-that domestic thriller is far too familiar and formulaic to be involving and exciting, let alone any credible at all, simply because the 'malicious surrogacy' subject matter has been done many times before, not to mention the predictable twists and naive characters not doing any favors to the film. Same goes for the bad acting, with Cage and Dunaway playing at the very back.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

[6.00/10] Everybody Loves Somebody (2017)

Everybody Loves Somebody (2017)

Quick Review: It appears slightly superficial, and it doesn't break any new grounds in the drained genre with its generic love triangle plot, but this light-hearted Mexican rom-com easily avoids the sentimentality, and offers just enough spicy dialogues, and raunchiness, and witty humor to standout as delightfully refreshing, plus the genuine performances from everyone involved especially Souza, make "Everybody Loves Somebody" an enjoyable experience.

Monday, July 10, 2017

[6.75/10] The Promise (2017)

The Promise (2017)

Quick Review: Overlong, and not always as neatly paced as it should be, yet superbly-acted and prettily- shot, "The Promise" is an important film about Armenian Genocide with a powerful impact, whose sweeping visuals are in contrast with the hard subject -- the authentic oriental vibe and splendid locations please the eye, while the harrowing actual story touches the heart. The love triangle subplot may be sappy, but the great performances from Isaac, Bale, and Le Bon make it credible.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

[5.75/10] 2:22 (2017)

2:22 (2017)

Quick Review: Surprisingly, "2:22" impresses from the get-go with its sharp editing, brilliant camera work, and cool score. The introduction of the central character captivates with style and originality, but as soon as the mystery takes center stage, the whole thing becomes a bit muddled, and even confusing due to a messy writing. After a few twists, everything starts to make sense, but the climax is far from rewarding. While Palmer doesn't disappoint at all, Huisman's acting is so inconsistent.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

[8.75/10] Spider-Man: Homecoming [3D] (2017)

Spider-Man: Homecoming [3D] (2017)

Quick Review: Playing it 'too cool for school', "Homecoming" is a teen- spirited laugh-fest that entangles in its web of fun, romance, thrills, and twists, totally embracing its youthful approach through the zestful script and Tom Holland's goofy turn as the chatty and clumsy, yet bold Spidey, who contrasts with the wicked villain. The impressive ferry set piece is the true action highlight, the CGI work is mostly superb, and Iron Man's show ups are cleverly spot-on.

Friday, July 7, 2017

[6.25/10] Security (2017)

Security (2017)

Quick Review: It's barely credible, and pretty exaggerated, but only in order to entertain more, this simple in concept, yet solid in its execution action thriller proves that a talented director doesn't need huge budget, or wide variety of locations to make a good movie. Entirely set in a mall, and with tiny use of  CGIs, "Security" benefits from the tight camera work, snappy editing, and tense action as much as it does from Banderas, who turns in one likable, but also tough, and fearless protagonist.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

[6.00/10] Trapped (2017)

Trapped (2017)

Quick Review: A Hindi survival flick about a man shut in an uninhabited flat, "Trapped" succeeds mostly due to Rao's believable 'one man show' performance, as he makes you care for his desperate and struggling, yet strong and hopeful character, who never surrenders on making his way out. The escape scene towards the end will make your heart pound fast, but the rest of the film is not nearly as taut, because the limited setting is off-putting sometimes, and there's little to hold your interest.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

[7.00/10] The Zookeeper's Wife (2017)

The Zookeeper's Wife (2017)

Quick Review: As gorgeous to the eyes as it's harrowing to experience, due to the ruthless violence against innocent humans and animals, "The Zookeeper's Wife" tells an impactful story about bravery and nobility that touched and inspires as much as it entertains. Set in '40s Nazi-occupied Warsaw, the movie's visual delicacy contrasts with its subject matter, but also reflects the sincere humanity of its selfless central character, played remarkably by Chastain.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

[4.75/10] The Dinner (2017)

The Dinner (2017)

Quick Review: Despite the terrific cast, all of whom do their very best working with an overthought script that's more busy than provocative, this thriller has a lot more going on about itself than four people talking for 120 minutes in a restaurant, but in a complicated way -- served as a mish-mash of flashbacks and sub- plots which never blend well, "The Dinner" is like a meal with too many ingredients, pretentious flavor, and nasty smell that will possibly leave a bad taste in your mouth.