Best of the 2010s: Directorial Debut Films

There is something very exciting about a directorial debut. Obviously, the filmmaker is excited about their first chance to step behind the camera on a feature film, but, as an audience member or film writer of any kind, it is so fascinating to see the choices being made. Sometimes some of the boldest and most imaginative filmmakers present us with instant classics, other times newcomers deliver a product that may not be extraordinary filmmaking but which may still be a moving or exciting motion picture. In this month’s best of the decade list, I’m honoring the very best directorial debuts. Some of them are first works for potential auteurs, while others are impressive blockbuster entertainment from untested new filmmakers just learning the ropes. Continue reading “Best of the 2010s: Directorial Debut Films”

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.
Continue reading “REVIEW: Unicorn Store (2019)”

Best of the 2010s: Top Ten Comedy Films

Paramount Pictures; Fox Searchlight Pictures.

Comedy isn’t black-and-white. The genre most associated with films like your average American comedy like, say, American Pie or some Judd Apatow film is much more than its stereotype. There are stylish and quirky comedies, absurd and dark comedies. Comedy films come in all shapes and sizes, and the Best of the 2010s-list highlights multiple different types in the genre. Continue reading “Best of the 2010s: Top Ten Comedy Films”

REVIEW: Better Call Saul – “Talk”

The following is a recap and review of the fourth episode of the fourth season of Better Call Saul, available on AMC in the U. S. and on Netflix internationally. Expect story spoilers. 

In the fourth episode of the fourth season — Talk — Mike (played by Jonathan Banks) talks in group therapy, Kim (played by Rhea Seehorn) observes, and Jimmy (played by Bob Odenkirk) goes to work. Talk was written by Heather Marion and directed by John Shiban. Continue reading “REVIEW: Better Call Saul – “Talk””

REVIEW: Better Call Saul – “Something Beautiful”

The following is a recap and review of the third episode of the fourth season of Better Call Saul, available on AMC in the U. S. and on Netflix internationally. Expect story spoilers. 

In the third episode of the fourth season — Something Beautiful — Kim Wexler (played by Rhea Seehorn) gets back to work, Nacho (played by Michael Mando) gets hurt, and Jimmy (played by Bob Odenkirk) tries to steal a Bavarian Boy Hummel-figurine. Something Beautiful was written by Gordon Smith and directed by Daniel Sackheim. Continue reading “REVIEW: Better Call Saul – “Something Beautiful””

REVIEW: Better Call Saul – “Breathe”

The following is a recap and review of the second episode of the fourth season of Better Call Saul, available on AMC in the U. S. and on Netflix internationally. Expect story spoilers. 

In the second episode of the fourth season — Breathe — Jimmy (played by Bob Odenkirk) goes jobhunting, and Kim Wexler (played by Rhea Seehorn) stands up for her partner. Breathe was written by Thomas Schnauz and directed by Michelle MacLaren. Continue reading “REVIEW: Better Call Saul – “Breathe””

REVIEW: Better Call Saul – “Smoke”

The following is a recap and review of the first episode of the fourth season of Better Call Saul, available on AMC in the U. S. and on Netflix internationally. Expect story spoilers. 

In the first episode of the fourth season — Smoke — Mike (played by Jonathan Banks) goes to work, and the rest of the main characters react to the events of the third season finale. Smoke was written by Peter Gould and directed by Minkie Spiro. Continue reading “REVIEW: Better Call Saul – “Smoke””