REVIEW: Avengers: Endgame (2019)

Theatrical Release Poster – Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

The review does not include spoilers for Avengers: Endgame, (dirs. Anthony & Joe Russo) but you should absolutely expect spoilers for every film that came before it in the connected universe.

“All that for a drop of blood,” Thanos, the Mad Titan, groaned in 2018’s Avengers: Infinity War moments before Doctor Strange relinquished the time stone to save Tony Stark’s life. Soon the not-so-seasoned Avengers turned to dust. The teenaged talking tree, the brave wall-crawler, an African king with a seemingly impenetrable suit made to look like an anthropomorphic big cat, and a quippy, tricker-happy, 70s music-loving outlaw — all gone from one moment to the next. Those left standing were left to live with their mistakes, as the Avengers had now well and truly lost even though a Norse God, multiple supersoldiers, an eccentric billionaire, and a magical surgeon — to name a few — had fought long and hard to save fifty-percent of the known universe. They failed. If those sentences made no sense to you whatsoever, then Avengers: Endgame isn’t for you. If, however, you’ve been waiting to see — nay, obsessing about — what comes next for Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, then Endgame was designed for you. It is a somber epic like nothing you’ve ever seen before. Avengers: Endgame is peerless in scope and attention to detail, as well as moving from start to finish. Continue reading “REVIEW: Avengers: Endgame (2019)”

REVIEW: The Upside (2019)

Theatrical Release Poster – STX Films / Lantern Entertainment

The following is a short review of The Upside — Directed by Neil Burger.

A remake of Olivier Nakache & Éric Toledano’s French film, Intouchables, from 2011, Neil Burger’s The Upside follows Dell Scott (played by Kevin Hart), an African-American father on parole, who is hired to be the caregiver of the quadriplegic millionaire Phillip Lacasse (played by Bryan Cranston), who, after having lost his wife, has lost his will to live. Together, they form an — according to this film’s cliched formula — unlikely friendship from which they both learn a lot about life and culture. Continue reading “REVIEW: The Upside (2019)”

REVIEW: The Curse of La Llorona (2019)

Theatrical Release Poster – Warner Bros. Pictures

The following is a review of The Curse of La Llorona — Directed by Michael Chaves.

Though the film’s marketing hasn’t done a good enough job of alerting audiences of this, The Curse of La Llorona is the latest film in the Conjuring-film universe made popular by James Wan. Unfortunately, much like the first Annabelle-film and The Nun, this, the third spin-off film in the film series, is another let-down, and, now, there are as many bad films in the connected horror film universe as there are good. Hence, the good no longer outweighs the bad.
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REVIEW: Hellboy (2019)

Theatrical Release Poster – Lionsgate

The following is a review of Hellboy (2019) — Directed by Neil Marshall.

In 2004 and 2008, Oscar-winning auteur Guillermo del Toro brought us two critically well-received comic book monster movies about Mike Mignola’s Dark Horse Comics creation ‘Hellboy,’ a red Nazi-summoned half-demon that fights for the human race against monsters and other dark forces. Even though del Toro is a beloved figure and his films are still held in high regard, del Toro’s request for a third film was denied. Instead, producers decided that it was time to replace the first two films’ auteur — del Toro, who had a real, recognizable love for his creatures — and its indispensable leading man, Ron Perlman — who was absolutely perfect in the role — in a new reboot of the franchise. Continue reading “REVIEW: Hellboy (2019)”

REVIEW: The Silence (2019)

Release Poster – Netflix

The following is a review of The Silence — Directed by John R. Leonetti.

John R. Leonetti’s The Silence — not to be confused with Martin Scorsese’s Silence, which has a similar title, or John Krasinski’s A Quiet Place and Susanne Bier’s Bird Box, both of which have similar plots — follows a family during an apocalyptic event in which prehistoric bat-like creatures have come out of hiding to attack and feast on anything and anyone they hear. Stanley Tucci plays the family father, Miranda Otto his wife, and Kiernan Shipka plays one of his children — a deaf teenager. Continue reading “REVIEW: The Silence (2019)”

REVIEW: Unicorn Store (2019)

Release Poster – Netflix

The following is a review of Unicorn Store — Directed by Brie Larson.

Unicorn Store — Brie Larson’s directorial debut — had its original world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival back in 2017, but Larson had to wait until after she had become the titular hero of a superhero franchise before her directorial debut was distributed widely, now in April 2019. You can call it timing — good or otherwise — but, in any case, Brie Larson, an Oscar-winner and popular superhero actress, is now almost a household name. Unfortunately, I don’t think her debut feature, Unicorn Store, was worth the wait.
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REVIEW: Shazam! (2019)

Theatrical Release Poster – Warner Bros. / New Line Cinema

The following is a review of Shazam! — Directed by David F. Sandberg.

It pleases me to say that the DC Cinematic Universe has turned a corner. For so long, Wonder Woman, the first film in the connected universe to receive a majority of positive reviews from film writers, seemed like an anomaly in the inconsistent universe where mixed reception was the best that you could hope for. James Wan’s Aquaman, however, was a big hit — one that indicated that perhaps the DC connected film universe still had life in it. And for Shazam! — a character most audiences will be unfamiliar with — DC and Warner Bros. borrowed yet another director from the Conjuring-film universe, Swedish David F. Sandberg, who, thankfully, has made a huge homerun hit for the weakened connected universe.
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