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)”

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)”

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)”

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)”

REVIEW: Sergio (2020)

Release Poster – Netflix

The following is a review of Sergio — Directed by Greg Barker.

Greg Barker’s Sergio is a biographical drama about Sérgio Vieira de Mello’s career as a United Nations diplomat and peace activist. The seasoned Brazilian humanitarian lost his life in a terrorist attack in Baghdad in 2003, and this film takes us back to his final moments. The straight-to-Netflix true story is based on both the 2009 documentary of the same name, which was also directed by Greg Barker, and Samantha Powers’ biography Sergio: One Man’s Fight to Save the World. Since Barker directed an award-winning documentary about the aforementioned diplomat, it is not exactly a surprise to see that he has now made a narrative feature film about the same non-fictional subject-matter. What is, however, quite interesting is that Greg Barker has made a film where a love story is at the heart of it. Continue reading “REVIEW: Sergio (2020)”