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Friday, November 29, 2019

[7.50/10] The Farewell (2019)

The Farewell (2019)

Quick Review: An ideally balanced death-themed dramedy that's in fact opposite of lifeless, due to the deep characters, their sincere bond, and all of the genuine emotions they are forced to repress in the name of a 'white lie', "The Farewell" is as sad as it's uplifting, telling the what turns out to be an extraordinary domestic tragedy filled with so much warmth, love, respect, and sorrow, it's hard not to tear up in devastation, but it's Awkwafina's moving central turn that makes the story special.

Thursday, November 28, 2019

[6.25/10] The Angry Birds Movie 2 (2019)

The Angry Birds 2 (2019)

Quick Review: Although not as fun as the first, the crisp graphics, vivid colors, the cutesy new and lovable known characters, and the brisk, at times frantic, but always entertaining story in which the birdies join forces with the piggies to face off the mean and hysterical Zeta, whose hilarious voicing and eccentric behavior steal the show, "AB 2" is a humorous and energy-driven sequel that favors the most from the three cute hatchlings' fascinatingly adventurous backstory, especially the 'lol' finale.

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

[7.00/10] Frozen II [3D] (2019)

Frozen II [3D] (2019)

Quick Review: With a less frosty, more autumn-y vibe, and slick, richly detailed graphics that make it pretty to look at, yet not as enchanting as the first, "Frozen II" offers a grimmer, more grownup family-driven story of loss and vulnerability, taking us on a mysteriously obscure adventure that lacks the drama, heart and magic of its predecessor, or its catchy songs, but thanks to Elsa and Anna's warm sibling bond, its positive messages, and Olaf's hilarious silliness, it sure is still a trip worth taking.

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

[5.50/10] The Climbers (2019)

The Climbers (2019)

Quick Review: It has an important story that needs to be told, the A-list cast delivers, and the snowy, harsh environment is chilling, which along with the team's struggles to conquer Everest's summit bring moments of real tension, but instead of reaching new heights, "Climbers" falls apart as an avalanche in the end, allowing the sentiments of its melodramatic personal sub-plot to take over, plus the fight-for-national-pride approach make this historic achievement feel too political in purpose.

Monday, November 25, 2019

[7.25/10] Official Secrets (2019)

Official Secrets (2019)

Quick Review: As taut, thrilling and compelling as it's important and eye -opening, but above all disturbing in deeply realistic way, and led by one of Knightley's very best, most tense and dedicated performances to date as the brave and daring Gun, who risk her job, marriage, and freedom to save lives, "Official Secretes" is a must-see 'true story' political thriller that reveals the dubious nature of intelligence operations in a credible, suspenseful, and nail-biting manner to engage your interest.

[3.75/10] Don't Let Go (2019)

Don't Let Go (2019)

Quick Review: As highly ambitious as it's ludicrous, not only "Don't Let Go" is one of the most ugly-looking flicks of 2019, due to its off-putting color palette, unpleasant tone, and tacky style, but its prevent-murder- from-the-future-which-happened-in- the-past premise and bad execution make this one a real convoluted and plain stupid nonsense of a mystery sci-fi thriller with decent acting and some moments of mild tension, but very few thrills, and weak twists that narrowly work in its favor.

Friday, November 22, 2019

[6.75/10] The Peanut Butter Falcon (2019)

The Peanut Butter Falcon (2019)

Quick Review: As visually subdued as it's emotionally rich, "The Peanut Butter Falcon" is a poignant, sweet, funny, but above all heart-warming adventure drama that much like its Down syndrome protagonist wears its heart in its sleeve, and despite its thematic delicacy, is never afraid to demonstrate sense of humor, telling a moving 'runaway' story about true friendship, freedom, and purity in a feel-good fashion, accompanied by some outstanding acting.

Thursday, November 21, 2019

[6.00/10] Lady and the Tramp (2019)

Lady and the Tramp (2019)

Quick Review: Lacking the magic and divine cuteness of the 1955's animation, and yet respectful to it in terms of narrative, if with a bit more grown-up approach, this live-action remake charms with its vintage look, feel-good story, adorable pets, kind characters, and sense of nostalgia, but what it impresses the most with is the acting of the real dogs it uses to portray the two leading canines, their CGIed muzzle expressions and the sweet and warm romance during their on-street escapade.

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

[8.50/10] Klaus (2019)

Klaus (2019)

Quick Review: Though fully hand- painted, and majestically, so, it uses lighting tools to give its 2D graphics depth, and the result is an exquisite classic animation, so skillfully-drawn and meticulous, it often feels like a high-end CGI, but the refreshing, if nostalgic "Klaus" is more than pretty visuals -- it's a daring, yet credible take on the origin of Santa, free of Christmas tropes, but also a sweet, funny and poignant story of growth, care and kindness that starts bleak, but ends with true spark.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

[6.75/10] Noelle (2019)

Noelle (2019)

Quick Review: Worth-watching for the merry, magical, and visually vivid recreation of The North Pole during the first 20 minutes alone, "Noelle" might be a predictable, sugary, and often zany holiday fantasy flick with some intentionally cartoonish effects and goofy characters that will mainly appeal kids, but it's also a jolly, feel- good Christmas caper with positive message that puts a fresh take on Santa, and benefits from Kendrick's quirky turn as his good-hearted and lovable daughter, Noelle.

Sunday, November 17, 2019

[8.75/10] Ford v Ferrari (2019)

Ford v Ferrari (2019)
Quick Review: Charged by Damon and Bale's chemistry, and balancing out deftly-crafted car racing scenes with cutting-edge sound effects that give an adrenaline rush, and a truly engrossing, fact-based story about talent, passion, skill, and spirit, that has a seemingly competitive nature, but dealing with family, friendship, and support, it's in fact very human at its heart, the tastefully retro "Ford v Ferrari" is as much a speedy thrill- ride on the track, as it's an emotive roller-coaster when off it.

Friday, November 15, 2019

[6.50/10] Dora and the Lost City of Gold (2019)

Dora and the Lost City of Gold (2019)

Quick Review: Everyone expecting an IJ type of adventure might end up let down by its juvenile simplicity, but those seeking for harmless fun will truly enjoy this a vibrant in looks, goofy in nature, and brisk in pacing 'explorers against treasure hunters' jungle-set romp featuring characters and CGI animals that are equally as animated, and carrying a message, with the puzzle-solver Dora, played by the a-Dora-ble Merced, being an absolute force of nature.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

[5.25/10] Rattlesnake (2019)

Rattlesnake (2019)

Quick Review: With a bizarre, yet intriguing premise about a mythical curse, and set in a barren location in the desert which, combined with the washed out color palette, give is a sense of grit, "Rattlesnake" is by no means a horrible horror movie, especially considering Ejogo's taut, terrifically anxious performance, but 'paying the dept' plot-line avoids the mystery, and goes in a more violent, abusive, albeit flat direction instead, resulting in a forgettable experience with zero thrills or frights.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

[6.25/10] The King (2019)

The King (2019)

Quick Review: Divinely grim in its medieval grittiness, shot with grace, written with thought, and acted with passion, this Shakespearean fiction is technically hard to fault, but if you anticipate anything thrilling or epic, you might be disappointed, as "The King" is a long, sluggish, and muddy historical drama about war, death, and barbarism, mostly focused on the rocky leadership of a daring and confident, if flawed young monarch, and driven by its 'royal' characters and profound dialogues.

Monday, November 11, 2019

[6.75/10] Doctor Sleep (2019)

Doctor Sleep (2019)

Quick Review: A visual homage to Kubrick's film that also applies some new 'dark fantasy' elements to be in contrast with it, "DS" is overcrowded and muddled, as its narrative jumps back and forth between the many characters' split stories, which along with the random editing kill the pace, but the superhero-esque direction it takes in is fresh and surprising, the True Knot brings soul-sucking terror that merges eerily with the somber, blue-shaded imagery, and the three leads shine in their roles.

[6.50/10] Dolemite Is My Name (2019)

Dolemite Is My Name (2019)

Quick Review: Eddie Murphy lives and breathes his role as the colorful Rudy, giving a truly outstanding and lively performance that alone makes the film worth-seeing, plus, the vivid recreation of 1970s LA is real feast for the eyes, thanks to the authentic art direction, stylish costumes, and classy retro looks, but the otherwise groovy, perky, and unapologetically black biopic "Dolemite Is My Name" is hardly ever as inspiring, engaging or funny as it thinks it is.

Friday, November 8, 2019

[5.50/10] Countdown (2019)

Countdown (2019)

Quick Review: Blending diabolical ancient mythology with present-day technology by throwing mean spirits, curses, apps and smartphones all in one place, "Countdown" has a silly, if fun concept, a few effective jump scares, eerie demons, nice heroine, and even some clever bits here and there, but the sheer absurdity, lame writing, lack of logic, and pointless romance make this otherwise tense and decently-executed supernatural tech horror a nonsensical mess with unsatisfying conclusion.

[6.75/10] The Nightingale (2019)

The Nightingale (2019)

Quick Review: Bleak, beautiful and brutal, "The Nightingale" is not for the fainthearted as it shows scenes of unbearable cruelty, savagery and rape, which define its grimness, and although it's often sluggish and too dragged in parts, this period thriller, taking place in XIX century colonized Australia and set in the bush, works as both a gritty, untamed and violent story of vengeance, but also a road trip drama about an unlikely amity, driven by Franciosi's Clare and her fierce thirst for revenge.

Thursday, November 7, 2019

[8.25/10] Luce (2019)

Luce (2019)

Quick Review: With multi-layered, complex characters that are hard to define who's right or wrong, good or bad, frank or deceitful, all portrayed with equal weight, persuasion, and credibility by the excellent ensemble cast, and a cleverly-written, thought- provoking script that hazes the real true of its powerful story, leaving it free-to-interpret, "Luce" is a brainy, gripping, and stimulating illustration of deception and manipulation that utilizes delusion to rise its suspense to an un-bearable level.

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

[6.75/10] The Art of Self-Defense (2019)

The Art of Self-Defense (2019)

Quick Review: Grimmer than you'd might anticipate, if amusing enough to balance out its offbeat darkness, "Art of Self-Defense" does not fulfill the potential of its original ideas, but for a karate-led comedy about toxic masculinity, it pulls a punch, if yellow belt one, to make you care about its awkward and precarious protagonist and his comforting way to deal with trauma, not to mention the shocking twists and turns in the third act bring some solid thrills as well.

[6.00/10] Tall Girl (2019)

Tall Girl (2019)

Quick Review: Yes, its concept is kinda gimmicky, yes, the characters are terribly stereotypical, and yes, the romantic twist in the end is more than obvious, and yet, "Tall Girl" is still a sweet, charming, and easy to watch dramedy about insecurities, lack of self-esteem, and learning to love yourself as you are, depicting the high school life of a teen misfit, who thinks her tallness is her curse, with Ava Michelle being fascinating as Jodi, and all the rest - amusing in their very colorful roles.

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

[4.50/10] Wounds (2019)

Wounds (2019)

Quick Review: A nicely-conceived, yet poorly executed tech horror with a real unique concept, but unfulfilled potential, "Wounds" seems like the first half of a two-part film, due to its incomplete, patchy plot, unexplained mystery, and lack of coherence and sense, plus, in spite of having few clever ideas up its sleeve, a steady creep factor, and a well-known cast to benefit from, the whole thing is so perplexing, vague, unclear and with loose ends, it's hard to care for the characters, or the story.

Monday, November 4, 2019

[6.25/10] 47 Meters Down: Uncaged (2019)

47 Meters Down: Uncaged (2019)

Quick Review: The claustrophobic, waterlogged ancient cave alone will leave you gasping for air, the nasty blind sharks attack abruptly, fusing the water with tons of blood, and the lead is easy to root for, but despite some bits of aquatic suspense and gore galore, "Uncaged" is mostly a brainless, predictable and over-the- top, if fun-to-watch sequel that lacks the sheer tension, realistic feel, and unbearable thrills of the first, hence fails to sink you into fear.

Friday, November 1, 2019

[7.00/10] Terminator: Dark Fate (2019)

Terminator: Dark Fate (2019)

Quick Review: Paying a nostalgic, yet fun tribute to "T2", without much novelty, but plenty of thrills, action, and sarcastic humor, "Dark Fate" is a technically-skillful sequel boasting with top-notch CGI work, exhilarating chases, hard-hitting fights, and out- of-this-world stunts, but its strength remains the female-led cast, notably Hamilton's badass return, as well as the characters' stirring backstories, which tie all loose ends, and add an emotional weight to it all.