Overview: May 2020

Overview is a new monthly article that provides my readers with a brief overview of the articles or reviews that I have written, as well as additional bite-sized thoughts on films or shows about which I do not intend to write thorough reviews.

In May of 2020, I finally continued my ‘Best of the 2010s’ genre-specific lists, I watched a handful of new releases, and I wrote about the upcoming release of the so-called Snyder-Cut, which was finally announced. But that’s not all I did this month. Let’s take a look back at what I watched and what I wrote in May 2020.

But first, we need to talk about George Floyd. Continue reading “Overview: May 2020”

REVIEW: The Gentlemen (2020)

Theatrical Release Poster — STX Films

The following is a review of The Gentlemen — Directed by Guy Ritchie.

If you look at Guy Ritchie’s films from the 2010s, you will see a mixed bag of sequels, spin-offs, remakes, and potential franchise-starters that were made with either Warner Bros. or Disney. His 2011 Sherlock Holmes sequel, A Game of Shadows, received mixed-to-positive reviews and was a financial success. Though I actually really enjoyed it, his film adaptation of The Man from U.N.C.L.E. was described by industry experts as a box office flop, and his woeful fantasy epic King Arthur: Legend of the Sword was even more of disappointment as it was critically panned and reportedly lost its studios more than $150 million. Continue reading “REVIEW: The Gentlemen (2020)”

REVIEW: The Lovebirds (2020)

Original Theatrical Release Poster – Paramount Pictures

The following is a review of The Lovebirds — Directed by Michael Showalter.

The Coronavirus Pandemic has had a serious impact on the film industry. The future of the movie theater industry is uncertain as some films that were meant for a theatrical release have been released on video-on-demand or streaming services, while many of the year’s biggest films have been removed from the 2020 theatrical release schedule entirely. This Michael Showalter romantic-comedy, The Lovebirds, was originally meant to be released in theaters by Paramount Pictures in April, but when theaters around the world closed their doors, the film studio sold its rights to Netflix, who finally released the film on the 22nd of May. The Lovebirds fits right in on Netflix, but, quality-wise, it is a significant step down from The Big Sick, Showalter’s previous film as a director. Continue reading “REVIEW: The Lovebirds (2020)”

REVIEW: The Wrong Missy (2020)

Release Poster – Netflix

The following is a review of The Wrong Missy — Directed by Tyler Spindel.

As far as I am aware, Tyler Spindel’s The Wrong Missy is the eighth film that Netflix has distributed for Happy Madison Productions, the production company founded by Adam Sandler. Most of these films feature Adam Sandler in the lead role, and, often, the films take place in sunny locations. This has led to these films jokingly being referred to as ‘vacations’ that Sandler takes his friends and family on to relax between takes. I don’t know if there is any truth to that common joke, but, come to think of it, The Wrong Missy, which, notably, doesn’t feature Adam Sandler, actually does take place in sunny Hawaii.  In any case, this film, unfortunately, isn’t the return to form for Happy Madison that I wanted it to be. Continue reading “REVIEW: The Wrong Missy (2020)”

Snyder Cut: Zack Snyder’s Justice League is on its way to HBO MAX – Special Features #70

During a watch-along of his film Man of Steel, today — May 20th, 2020 — director Zack Snyder, alongside his wife and creative partner Deborah Snyder, announced that, in 2021, Warner Bros. will, finally, ‘release the Snyder cut’ of Justice League (2017) on HBO MAX. DC Comics’ vocal fan base has been heard. In this week’s edition of Special Features, I will answer some questions about this piece of news, and I will tell you exactly how I feel about Warner Bros.’ decision. Let’s get to it. Continue reading “Snyder Cut: Zack Snyder’s Justice League is on its way to HBO MAX – Special Features #70”

REVIEW: The Half of It (2020)

Release Poster – Netflix

The following is a review of The Half of It — Directed by Alice Wu.

Netflix has, in a way, become the home of the teenage coming-of-age romantic-comedy genre. Since they achieved great success with Susan Johnson’s To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, Netflix has been eager to return to that same subgenre and treat their worldwide audience to stories about young Americans finding themselves, discovering their own identities, and expressing their true feelings. Netflix has successfully cornered that market as of late, and their latest teenage romantic-comedy success story comes from filmmaker Alice Wu, whose second feature has finally come out for all to see fifteen years after her directorial debut was originally released. Continue reading “REVIEW: The Half of It (2020)”

Best of the 2010s: Top Ten Sci-Fi Films

Mad Max: Fury Road — Warner Bros.

As has been announced previously, now that the 2010s have come to an end, I want to highlight, recognize, and, in a sense, reward the best films not just of a year but also of the last decade. Previously, I’ve written Best of the 2010s-lists on Comedy, Directorial Debuts, Biopics, and Horror films. The next genre-specific top ten list for the 2010s is all about one of my very favorite genres: Science-Fiction. However, before I list the best science-fiction films of the decade, let me describe my criteria for putting the list together. Continue reading “Best of the 2010s: Top Ten Sci-Fi Films”

REVIEW: Ser du månen, Daniel? (2019)

Danish Theatrical Release Poster – Nordisk Film

The following is a review of ‘Ser Du Månen, Daniel?‘ (also known as ‘Daniel‘) — Directed by Niels Arden Oplev and Anders W. Berthelsen (co-director).

Although the Danish entry — May el-Toukhy’s outstanding film, Dronningen — was not, ultimately, nominated for the Academy Award for Best International Feature, 2019 was a pretty great year for Danish films. Outside of the aforementioned May el-Toukhy film, last year also saw the release of other great Danish films like Michael Noer’s period piece Før Frosten and Rasmus Kloster Bro’s claustrophobic directorial feature film debut Cutterhead. Mads Brügger also released his award-winning documentary Cold Case Hammarskjold. Continue reading “REVIEW: Ser du månen, Daniel? (2019)”

93rd Oscars: New Eligibility Requirements and a ‘New’ Category – Special Features #69

The coronavirus pandemic has had a serious impact on the film industry. Universal has pulled several films from their theatrical release schedule and made them available on-demand, and, allegedly, they have found a lot of success with the VOD release of Trolls World Tour. Meanwhile, we still don’t know when theaters all over the world will reopen. It could take several weeks, but it could also take several months. Your guess could be as good as mine. As a direct result of the coronavirus pandemic, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ (AMPAS) Board of Governors has approved several noteworthy rule changes that, among other things, change which films are eligible for the 93rd Academy Awards. Continue reading “93rd Oscars: New Eligibility Requirements and a ‘New’ Category – Special Features #69”

REVIEW: Extraction (2020)

Release Poster – Netflix

The following is a review of Extraction — Directed by Sam Hargrave.

The straight-to-Netflix action thriller Extraction is based on the comic book Ciudad, which was written by Ande Parks (comic book writer), and the Russo brothers (the directors of Avengers: Endgame, one of whom also wrote Extraction). Extraction was even directed by a Marvel movie veteran. This is the directorial debut of Sam Hargrave, who has experience as a stunt double and stunt coordinator on multiple Marvel movies. Unlike Disney-Marvel movies, however, Extraction is filled to the brim with excessive violence. Hargrave’s debut, though not narratively challenging, is a thrilling exercise in hectic action set pieces. It’s not exactly John Wick-quality, but it is one of the best Netflix original action films to have been released thus far. Continue reading “REVIEW: Extraction (2020)”