Look for the Light: The Last of Us: Part II is a Truly Special Game

The Last of Us: Part II – Naughty Dog – Sony – PS4 Screenshot

The following article features story spoilers for the entirety of both The Last of Us and The Last of Us: Part II. Do not read the article before you finish both games.

In 2013, Naughty Dog’s The Last of Us — my favorite video game ever made —  was released exclusively on PlayStation 3 (it was later remastered on PlayStation 4) to near-universal praise and numerous accolades. On the surface-level, this was a survival horror game in the zombie sub-genre. But it was also so much more than that. It was a story about love and rediscovering something to fight for. Gamers primarily played as Joel Miller (Troy Baker), a smuggler without scruples, who was tasked with transporting a young girl, Ellie (Ashley Johnson), across the United States for the purpose of crafting a vaccine to the fungal virus that had turned infected humans into ruthless barely-human creatures without rational thought. Continue reading “Look for the Light: The Last of Us: Part II is a Truly Special Game”

REVIEW: Sonic the Hedgehog (2020)

Theatrical Release Poster – Paramount Pictures

The following is a review of Sonic the Hedgehog — Directed by Jeff Fowler.

Jeff Fowler’s Sonic the Hedgehog is based on the popular iconic video game franchise of the same name, which is about an anthropomorphic blue hedgehog that can run extremely fast. At the outset of the film, the aforementioned blue hedgehog (voiced by Ben Schwartz) is just a fast young hedgehog without a care in the world, but, when it becomes too dangerous to stay on his homeworld, Longclaw the Owl (voiced by Donna Jay Fulks), Sonic’s guardian, gives Sonic a small bag full of magical rings that can help him travel to different worlds in the universe. Sonic the Hedgehog needs to find a safe and new home. Continue reading “REVIEW: Sonic the Hedgehog (2020)”

REVIEW: Da 5 Bloods (2020)

Release Poster – Netflix

The following is a review of Da 5 Bloods — A Spike Lee Joint.

Spike Lee’s Da 5 Bloods is a war film about the lasting effects of the Vietnam War on four African-American war veterans — Eddie (played by Norm Lewis), Otis (played by Clarke Peters), Melvin (played by Isiah Whitlock, Jr.), and Paul (played by Delroy Lindo) — collectively known as the ‘Bloods.’ Now, decades after the war has ended, the Bloods have returned to Vietnam to retrieve what they left behind in the jungle. They claim to only be back to retrieve the body of their squad leader, Stormin’ Norman (played by Chadwick Boseman), but they also want to find the precious gold bars that they had to leave behind when they were young men. Continue reading “REVIEW: Da 5 Bloods (2020)”

REVIEW: Bad Education (2020)

Release Poster – HBO Films

The following is a review of Bad Education — Directed by Cory Finley.

Bad Education is the second film from director Cory Finley (Thoroughbreds), and the HBO Films drama is based on a New York Magazine article written by Robert Kolker about a public school embezzlement scandal that happened back in the 2000s. The film follows Dr. Frank Tassone (played by Hugh Jackman), the superintendent of the Roslyn Union Free School district, and Pam Gluckin (played by Allison Janney), the assistant superintendent. Gluckin and Tassone have achieved great success as a team as is evident by the fact that their district’s public high school is ranked fourth in the nation at the beginning of the film. But, as one student is about to uncover, their successful partnership is built on illegal activities. Continue reading “REVIEW: Bad Education (2020)”

REVIEW: Krudttønden: The Day We Died (2020)

Danish Theatrical Release Poster – SF Studios

The following is a review of Krudttønden (international title: The Day We Died) — Directed by Ole Christian Madsen.

Ole Christian Madsen’s Krudttønden: The Day We Died is a dramatization of the 2015 Copenhagen terrorist attack that follows four different individuals — Finn Nørgaard, Dan Uzan, Omar El-Hussein, and Rico — in the days leading up to the shootings and when the shootings took place. Finn Nørgaard (played by Lars Brygmann) and Dan Uzan (played by Adam Buschard) were victims of the shooting, Omar El-Hussein (played by Albert Arthur Amiryan) carried out the shooting, and the worn-out police officer, Rico (played by Nikolaj Coster-Waldau), who is a composite character, had an important role in the manhunt for El-Hussein. One characteristic that these four individuals share in the days prior to the terrorist attack is that they are all frustrated about the roadblocks in life that overwhelm their daily lives. Continue reading “REVIEW: Krudttønden: The Day We Died (2020)”

REVIEW: Westworld – Season Three (2020)

Poster – HBO

The following is a review of the third season of HBO’s Westworld — Created by Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy.

I wish I had more nice things to say about this latest season of Westworld. This is a show that I have loved for a very long time. In the past, I have spent a lot of hours online reading theories and speculations about the series. In the past, I would discuss the show with friends and family. In the past, I would nerd out about the show. In the past, it never wore me out. I would spend each and every week writing recaps and reviews of each and every episode of the first two seasons. But, unfortunately, season three of Westworld was the one that convinced me to stop reviewing the series episode by episode. It, honestly, shocked me to find out that a show that I had loved so much could lose me so easily. Continue reading “REVIEW: Westworld – Season Three (2020)”

REVIEW: Little Women (2019)

US Theatrical Release Poster – Sony Pictures Releasing

The following is a review of Little Women (2019) — Directed by Greta Gerwig.

This is a movie that I have wanted to review for a very long time. As I often bemoan, in Denmark, distributors tend to theatrically release major Oscar-nominated films months after they have been released in the United States. This often means that I miss out on the conversations that these films bring up. It also means that, in this case, I couldn’t discuss the only film nominated for Best Picture that was directed by a woman during awards season for the 92nd Academy Awards. Now that I finally have my hands on a Blu-Ray of the film, which I bought on Amazon UK, I have had the chance to watch and review a film that my peers already have plenty of thoughts about. Coincidentally, the film is now finally being released in Danish theaters just as the UK Blu-Ray arrived. Continue reading “REVIEW: Little Women (2019)”

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)”