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Thursday, August 31, 2017

[4.00/10] First Kill (2017)

First Kill (2017)

Quick Review: Some of the action is finely-executed, plus, considering the not-so-big budget, the film looks pretty well due to some nice filters, and an okay camera work, but these technical merits hardly compensate for the the utter lack of originality, and can't cover up the fact what a derivative run-of-the-mill affair "First Kill" truly is. Willis and Christensen don't seem too thrilled to star in a movie with such a tired concept, with the latter giving yet another horribly lackluster performance.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

[5.50/10] My Cousin Rachel (2017)

My Cousin Rachel (2017)

Quick Review: As stunning to look at as it's hard to follow, this exquisite period piece based on the novel of the same name boasts with one of the most ravishing cinematography, lavish production design, and lush scenery this  genre has to offer, but it never manages to grab you, and engage you on a deeper level, due to its inconsistent and emotionless love story, feeling a bit too 'carried away'. Weisz gives it her all, but her appeal is not enough to make up for the lazily-adapted script.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

[6.50/10] The Case for Christ (2017)

The Case for Christ (2017)

Quick Review: Gripping, heartfelt, and credible, without being preachy or too manipulative, "The Case for Christ" is not only a fine-looking and precisely-crafted film that accurately captures the 80's feel and vibe, but it also depicts well the journey of an Atheist journalist becoming a huge believer in a subtle and realistic, yet edgy way, managing to balance out the investigation and the domestic drama throughout. This faith-based film also benefits from strong acting, but it's not for everyone.

Monday, August 28, 2017

[4.25/10] The Ice Cream Truck (2017)

The Ice Cream Truck (2017)

Quick Review: The use soft, pastel colors definitely bring ice cream to mind, and give the film a funky old- fashioned vibe, further enhanced by the charming suburban setting, and the protagonist is as appealing as she is down-to-earth, but "The Ice Cream Truck" never feels like a true slasher flick, being totally pointless and often dull. The killer himself is nutty, yet too bland to give you the chills and the knife-stabbing kills are more boring than bloody.

Sunday, August 27, 2017

[5.75/10] The Hitman's Bodyguard (2017)

The Hitman's Bodyguard (2017)

Quick Review: A hit-n-miss action comedy that's too cliched to be cool, but also too energetic to be boring, the frenetically-paced "The Hitman's Bodyguard" nicely pairs up Reynold and Jackson, who have an explosive chemistry between their contrasting characters, but sadly the profanity-filled script prevent them to deliver big laughs, which is a pity, because in action-wise, the film delivers -- the chase scenes are great fun, and the violence is so cartoonish.

Saturday, August 26, 2017

[7.00/10] American Made (2017)

American Made (2017)

Quick Review: A pretty fascinating real life-based story about an airline pilot-turned rich drug dealer-turned CIA helper, told in a stylish fashion, and thankfully with an edge instead of cheese, "American Made" is bold, amusing, engrossing, and fairly taut, only losing some of its steam in the middle. The vintage looks along with the vibrant color palette complement the sharp direction, but what makes the movie successful is Tom Cruise, who absolutely embodies his cheeky and confident character.

Friday, August 25, 2017

[4.00/10] The Triangle (2017)

The Triangle (2017)

Quick Review: Shot in the typical shaky hand-held camera style, this micro-budget mockumentary about a community living an alternative life in the middle of nowhere kicks off in a similar vein to the superior "The Sacrament", exploring the commune and their motives, which takes 2/3 of the film, and it's not that interesting, implying some crazy stuff to happen, but when they do towards the end, it is all too peculiar, and devoid of any sense and explanation to be creepy, let alone truly horrifying.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

[3.50/10] The Emoji Movie [3D] (2017)

The Emoji Movie (2017)

Quick Review: More of a sloppily, badly hidden аpp commercial rather than an actual animation, this is a gimmicky and contrived disaster of a film that is as ridiculous in concept, as it's inferior in execution -- setting a bad example to all youngsters by worshiping social media and virtual communication instead of bringing a moral message, "The Emoji Movie" is totally devoid of fun, personality, and, sadly, emotion. Apart from the visually flashy Spotify sequence, the graphics are shabby too.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

[6.75/10] Beatriz at Dinner (2017)

Beatriz at Dinner (2017)

Quick Review: What starts off as a fish-out-of-water story which clashes two vastly different classes, later on turns into a progressively, if quietly intense slow-burner with a touch of revenge that not only benefits from its compelling writing, but also takes full advantage of its great cast, with Hayek dominating the film with her unsettling performance, as the kind, modest, yet candid and opinionated central character, who's provocative behavior will keep you on your toes until the shocking climax.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

[5.00/10] Open Water 3: Cage Dive (2017)

Open Water 3: Cage Dive (2017)

Quick Review: Neither having the thrills of "47 Meters Down", nor the technical skill of "The Shallows", this sequel may be the first POV shark movie ever, but it never reaches the depths of fear it aims, being way too gimmicky, as it relies on the success of the original to cause interest, and on its 'found footage' filming style to be realistic. It is not easy to execute, and shark scenes are tense, but the flat characters and messy direction make it rather mediocre.

Monday, August 21, 2017

[8.25/10] What Happened to Monday (2017)

What Happened to Monday (2017)

Quick Review: Bringing a relevant social commentary with gritty edge, "What Happened to Monday" is just as genius as its title -- conceptually smart, highly inventive, and unique, this twisty, skillfully-crafted dystopian flick is almost too thrilling to endure, and too intense to handle, thanks to Wirkola's taut direction, which never loses focus. Rapace flaunts brilliant versatility through her remarkable 7- character role, making this movie all the more extraordinary.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

[7.50/10] Atomic Blonde (2017)

Atomic Blonde (2017)

Quick Review: A cat 'n mouse spy game with many curveballs to keep you intrigued, but also embracing its comic book feel, "Atomic Blonde" is a polished directional debut, whose washed-out color palette fits the ice- cold retro tone of the film, with the vivid use of neon lighting adding a cool contrast. Theron is as feisty as she's pretty to look at as the badass agent, and she 'kicks butt' not only during the brutal, hyper-violent fight combats, but also through her tricky, so piercing expressions.

Friday, August 18, 2017

[5.50/10] Message from the King (2017)

Message from the King (2017)

Quick Review: The gritty tone and dim lighting perfectly match the grim story and the extreme violence adds definite edge to this otherwise quiet movie, but it never gives a detailed explanation about the whole murder mystery, remaining underdeveloped. Boseman is likable as the tough, yet good-hearted South African, who is seeking for vengence, yet he hardly delivers a memorable pefrormance. The supporting cast is solid enough to help him carry the film.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

[4.00/10] Naked (2017)

Naked (2017)

Quick Review: Basically a remake of "Groundhog Day", a horrible and redundant one for that matter, this NetFlix-produced sci-fi comedy with an almost all-black cast quickly gets lost in its ridiculously loopy plot-line, becoming too repetitive to make any sense and to rip-off-ish to shine with any originality whatsoever. Wayans plays yet another loser who's pretty annoying to watch, and the witless writing and flat humor fail to provide a single laugh, but at least "Naked" looks fine for a comedy.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

[6.50/10] Annabelle: Creation (2017)

Annabelle: Creation (2017)

Quick Review: Technically superior to the first, if barely more terrifying, "Annabelle: Creation" creates some fright-soaked tension throughout its long build-up, letting us connect with the characters, while benefiting from its sinister tone, but its familiar origin story fails to avoid the cliches, and makes little sense until the third act. Luckily, the latter not only provides all the answers, but it also delivers some hair-raising scares. Annabelle is eerie as hell, but the demon gives the biggest creeps here.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

[3.50/10] The Hatton Garden Job (2017)

The Hatton Garden Job (2017)

Quick Review: Inspired by one of the biggest real-life bank robberies in Britain, yet uninspired in terms of execution, being all over the place, lazy, and lackluster, "Hatton Garden Job" is devided into two destinctive halves, the first of which is about the strategy and preparation for the job, and the second for the heist itself, but neither of them is that amusing, exciting, or interesting to watch, and not even the fine cast can save this corny borefest of a film.

Monday, August 14, 2017

[5.25/10] Everything, Everything (2017)

Everything, Everything (2017)

Quick Review: Both the luxurious interiors and lavish exteriors please the eye, plus, the two young leads are adorable in their roles as the SCID-suffering girl, and her first love interest, but "Everything Everything" is so sugary for the most part, it is basically the cinematic equivalent of diabetes. The sudden turn of events in the third act turns the movie from corny to cruel, which on one hand adds an edge to it, but on the other kills all of the sweetness.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

[6.75/10] 68 Kill (2017)

68 Kill (2017)

Quick Review: As darkly funny as it is outrageously violent, this trashy, grindhouse-flavored indie heist flick takes absolutely no prisoners, being brutal, wicked, uncompromising, and very sick in the head, and delivering shock value, one twist after another, and in-your-face gore that make it a 'crazy ass shit' experience. Although male-led, "68 Kill" assigns its female characters to dominate the story by turning them all from secondary into main ones in a skillful, inventive and pretty unpredictable way.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

[4.50/10] Jasper Jones (2017)

Jasper Jones (2017)

Quick Review: Based on the novel of the same name, and taking place in late 60's Western Australia, "JJ"'s visual authenticity, and subtle tones match its toned-down approach, but sadly, all of the intrigue around the small-town murder mystery it deals with is killed by the muddled pacing, and unfocused direction that pays way too much attention on the family dynamics involving the protagonist, and not enough on the main story. The acting is all-around strong, with Collette shining the most.

Monday, August 7, 2017

[6.00/10] Dance Academy: The Movie (2017)

Dance Academy: The Movie (2017)

Quick Review: Based on the Aussie TV series ofthe same name, "Dance Academy: The Movie" fails to avoid the straightforwardness typical for the most films of this sub-genre, but at least it doesn't rely only on the ballet routines to sustain the viewers interest, and nothing about it feels forced, or exaggerated -- heartfelt, emotional, and featuring characters that are easy to relate to, this one is as much about passion as it's about friendship and true love.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

[6.25/10] Sleight (2017)

Sleight (2017)

Quick Review: Light on production values, if real heavy on imagination, "Sleight" makes up for its ordinary looks with a clever, often innovative script which blends a few seemingly unsuitable genres, ending up being magical, romantic, and thrilling all at once, without losing its true sense of realism. Latimore's screen presence helps him deliver a genuine turn as the likable street magician, coping with his troublesome gang life. The moody tone does not always work in the film's favor, though.

Saturday, August 5, 2017

[4.75/10] The Dark Tower (2017)

The Dark Tower (2017)

Quick Review: Badly-adapted from King's thematically complex material, "The Dark Tower" basically contains three decent scenes -- the gunfight one, the hospital one, and the final combat, with the second being the only funny moment in this lackluster misfire. All the rest of it is a rushed cheese-fest with zero thrills, minimal action, and many cliches, further let down by a colorless tone and spotty CGIs that make it look low-cost. Elba and McConaughey are solid, but the poor script wastes them.

Friday, August 4, 2017

[9.25/10] Baby Driver (2017)

Baby Driver (2017)

Quick Review: Ideally in tune with its eclectic score, "Baby Driver" is a sublime exercise in 'style on wheels' fueled with heart, wit, thrills, and fun that never takes its foot off the gas, thanks to Wright's frenetic direction, which knows no rest -- the vigorous camera work and edgy editing make the car stunts pure adrenaline rush, the vibrant use of color cools up the visuals, and the music-led shootouts are bananas! Elgort radiates appeal as Baby, and the rest outrace each other with brilliant acting.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

[5.00/10] Snatched (2017)

Snatched (2017)

Quick Review: On a positive note, "Snatched" successfully pairs two of the most hilarious women in history of comedy, however, the laughless, wit-free script they're forced to work with prevents them to demonstrate their natural chemistry and talent. Yes, it has a few moderately funny moments throughout, the pacing is fairly brisk, and the exotic backdrop gives it a proper summer-y feel, but the hackneyed vacation-gone-very- wrong story, and tired plot devices entirely ruin its potential.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

[4.00/10] Awaken the Shadowman (2017)

Awaken the Shadowman (2017)

Quick Review: Pretty ambitious in concept, yet mediocre in execution, "Awaken the Shadowman" is as silly as its title -- with an underdeveloped plot that revolves around a barely intriguing mystery, and makes little sense until the further disappointing conclusion, this poor-looking horror flick skips the 'boo' scares, aiming to affect on a more psychological level instead, but it never really manages to generate the proper sinister tone, or to deliver real frights.