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Friday, January 28, 2022

[6.50/10] The Novice (2021)

The Novice (2021)

Quick Review: No, "The Novice" is not your regular sports movie about passion, ambition, and wild rivalry -- it is a character study of a young woman with obsession so extreme, she enters some really dark territory with mental consequences, and it's a depiction that wouldn't have been as credible, raw, and disturbing, if it wasn't for Isabelle Fuhrman's nervy, uptight, and brilliantly tense central performance of a deeply unlikable, yet absorbing character you simply can't take your eyes off.

Tuesday, January 18, 2022

[6.25/10] Pig (2021)

Pig (2021)

Quick Review: Led by a restrained and subtly expressive, yet powerful, and, quite possibly, career-best turn from Nicolas Cage, the beautifully-shot and tonally moody "Pig" is a revelation to those unfamiliar with the pristine life of truffle hunters and what their pigs mean to them -- a business partner, a pet, and a best friend, but also a moving personal revenge tale of grief and remorse, with a few twists and turns, even if the slow pacing takes away from the film's mesmerizing aura.

Sunday, January 16, 2022

[6.50/10] Being the Ricardos (2021)

Being the Ricardos (2021)

Quick Review: A talky biopic that reveals the creative process behind Lucy and Desi's popular comedy TV show, as well as its execution, and curious details about their marriage, "Being the Ricardos" may be a bit busy, uneven, joyless, and slightly disjointed, but it's worth-seeing for the sharp dialogues full of wit, the tasteful vintage feel and look, and above all the superb performances from both Nicole Kidman and Javier Bardem, whose intense chemistry is the movie's driving force.

Thursday, January 13, 2022

[8.00/10] The Worst Person in the World a.k.a. Verdens verste menneske (2021)

The Worst Person in the World (2021)

Quick Review: As raw and real as a romance (or two) can get, but also a deep character study of loss, love and choices, "WPitW" is a brilliantly-written emotional roller coaster, split into 12 chapters, which range from witty, funny, and romantic to intense, grim, and truly sad, all led terrifically by Reinsve, whose messy character may be inconsistent, reckless, a bit shallow, and selfish, but Julie grows with each part, always staying frank, pure and true to herself.

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

[6.75/10] Eternals (2021)

Eternals (2021)

Quick Review: Tossing all at once - an elaborate, yet slow and uneven plot, a bunch of all-new characters with little depth, and busy, if always swanky action, "Eternals" is a lot to take in, little of which is thrilling, but it stands out with an untypically dim tone, racial and sexual diversity and all the serious topics it touches, as well as with Zhao's flair and skill to visualize grand cosmic imagery and flashy superpowers with the help of first-class CGIs, even if her direction feels kinda passion-less.

Tuesday, January 11, 2022

[6.75/10] Pleasure (2021)

Pleasure (2021)

Quick Review: Beneath its 'filthy' exterior of explicit sex scenes and outrageous physical and emotional exploitation in modern porn industry, "Pleasure" has a very 'human' core that portrays adult stars with all their feelings, emotions, and fears in a revealing, yet personal story about ambition and rivalry that follows the rough journey of a young Swedish rookie Bella, played so convincingly by Kappel, who takes in a role that requires bravery and courage - and "she's a natural", indeed.

Sunday, January 9, 2022

[6.50/10] Sing 2 (2021)

Sing 2 (2021)

Quick Review: Tad less fun, funny, or endearing than its predecessor, but just as enjoyable and tuneful, "Sing 2" reveals curious details from the tricky world of show business, and though the plot is formulaic and often predictable, this visually vivid sequel fascinates with its super-cute characters design, densely colored imagery of the vibrant animal world exteriors, and glossy Crystal Tower interiors, but also the superb voice work, and musical numbers you just can't help but singalong.

Friday, January 7, 2022

[7.00/10] Ghostbusters: Afterlife (2021)

Ghostbusters: Afterlife (2021)

Quick Review: Cleverly connected to the original '80s movies in way that it generates nostalgia, but also revitalizes the franchise, "Afterlife" is a sweet, entertaining, amusing, and poignant reboot with action, humor, heart, and some memories-inducing surprises which, in addition to its sweet family-driven story, adorable junior new additions and familiar old faces, offers plenty of cartoon-like visual effects and crazy-fun 'busting' to appeal to every age.

Thursday, January 6, 2022

[6.25/10] The Lost Daughter (2021)

The Lost Daughter (2021)

Quick Review: A simple, but oddly impactful story about the struggles of motherhood, many women would relate to, and whose flashbacks add layers of depth to the honest and bold subject of 'bad parenting', "The Lost Daughter" is neither eventful, nor full of likable characters, but the true mastery here is how Colman's restrained portrayal of the flawed, guilt-filled, middle-aged Leda makes you feel sympathy for her, despite that she comes across as reckless, selfish and irresponsible.

Tuesday, January 4, 2022

[7.25/10] Mass (2021)

Mass (2021)

Quick Review: Even though at first you have no idea what the uneasy meeting between the two families in a church room is about, you can still feel their pain and devastation, due to the candid portrayal from the four leads, but as soon as the anxious dialogues start to reveal the tragic reason behind the meetup, "Mass" exploits the sorrow, anger, growing tension and moral clashes between its genuine characters to tell a soul-stirring story of loss and forgiveness with poignant disclosure. 

Monday, January 3, 2022

[6.75/10] Red Rocket (2021)

Red Rocket (2021)

Quick Review: As outrageous and naughty, as it's clever and fun, and and led by the eccentric Mikey who has a personality as vibrant as a pink frosted doughnut with colorful sprinkles, "Red Rocket" is a satirical depiction of lunacy, obsession, and 'wrongness' that's refreshingly non-judgemental towards its protagonist -- a broke, beaten and reckless, yet charismatic and ex porn star back to his hometown for a fresh start, who the perfectly-cast Simon Rex plays with fascinating appeal.

Sunday, January 2, 2022

[5.25/10] The Princess Switch 3: Romancing the Star (2021)

The Princess Switch 3: Romancing the Star (2021)

Quick Review: Since the first two coupled Stacy and Margaret, "TPS 3" had no choice, but to 'romance' Fiona too, which it does through a MI-style 'rescue the Christmas star' plot - and it's just as corny as you'd expect, but at least the holiday spirit is still there, the royal interiors are still sparkly, and Hudgens still does a fair job in a fun triple performance that is amusing to watch, plus, the movie ends up on a sweet note with a 're-connection' finale.

Saturday, January 1, 2022

[6.00/10] The Humans (2021)

The Humans (2021)

Quick Review: A dialogue driven domestic drama set in a half-empty flat on Thanksgiving, and gathering three generations family members, "The Humans" is a bit too dreary in tone and feel, and not consistently engaging throughout, but it unfolds its simple story in a progressively dramatic manner -- there's tension, there's laughs, there's confessions, there are secrets being revealed -- and it's all very raw and real, thanks to the truly credible characters and their genuine dynamics.