REVIEWS: MCU Series on Disney+ – Year One (2021): ‘WandaVision,’ ‘Loki,’ ‘Hawkeye,’ and More

Paul Bettany as Vision in Marvel Studios’ WANDAVISION, exclusively on Disney+. — Photo: Disney+ / Marvel Studios.

Disney’s Marvel Studios — the masterminds and architects of the global cinematic sensation, the Marvel Cinematic Universe — now also spends a lot of time on TV/Streaming shows due to the arrival of the streaming service Disney+, which Disney knows can thrive on several shows aimed at the Marvel and Star Wars fandoms. In the first year with MCU content straight-to-Disney+, Disney and Marvel Studios gave us four live-action series and one premier animated show. In this article, I’ll take a look at each of the ‘first-year’ shows in bite-sized reviews.

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9th I’m Jeffrey Rex Awards, Pt. II – 2021 – Film Awards

The 94th Oscars ceremony has concluded, and my Top Ten Films of 2021-list has been released. That means it’s now time for me to reveal the second and final half of my 9th I’m Jeffrey Rex Awards. If you missed part one, then click here to read about my TV, Music, and Games winners. As always, the second half is all about films. In this article, you’ll find out who I think are the best actors of 2021, what film legend I have decided to celebrate, and much, much more. Oh, and also, there is a new-ish award that will be introduced for the first time in this very article. So, let’s get to it.

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REVIEW: CODA (2021)

Emilia Jones as ‘Ruby Rossi’ in Sian Heder’s CODA – Photo: Apple TV+.

Directed by Sian Heder – Screenplay by Sian Heder.

Whenever a film wins the Academy Awards’ Best Picture the spotlights start to assemble on top of it. People wish to poke holes in the film, call it overrated, and, in general, it suddenly has to live up to loftier expectations than it had to back when it was just a popular film. Moonlight was able to handle those spotlights, and it is still one of the previous decade’s great Best Picture winners (even though I preferred La La Land). Green Book, on the other hand, not so much.

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The 94th Oscars Ceremony was already problematic before Will Smith struck Chris Rock

A visibly-emotional Will Smith sits down after having slapped Chris Rock on stage at the Dolby Theatre – PHOTO: AMPAS, 2022.

Others may disagree but the Academy Awards ceremony — arguably Hollywood’s biggest night — is never boring to me. Some cinephiles think of it like their Super Bowl, their WrestleMania, but I don’t think anyone expected the ceremony to devolve into a contact sport as it briefly did in the Dolby Theatre at the 94th Academy Awards, when one of Hollywood’s last name-brand movie stars, the almost-always cool Will Smith, lost his temper. It was certainly one of the uglier moments in Oscar history, and it also topped what was previously the craziest moment in Oscar history.

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Additional Bite-Sized Reviews, Early 2022: ‘The Eyes of Tammy Faye,’ ‘The Afterparty,’ and More

Christopher Miller’s The Afterparty is available on APPLE TV+ right now. – Photo: Apple TV+.

In this edition of my recurring movie and television catch-up article series titled ‘Additional Bite-Sized Reviews,’ I take a look at one of the start of the year’s best shows, and I also give you my thoughts on a (currently) Oscar-nominated film. So, get comfortable, and get ready to read my thoughts on things like Apple TV+’s latest gem and the film that very well could earn Jessica Chastain her first Academy Award tonight.

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REVIEW: Nightmare Alley (2021)

Guillermo Del Toro’s NIGHTMARE ALLEY – PHOTO: Kerry Hayes / 20th Century Studios.

Directed by Guillermo Del Toro – Screenplay by Guillermo Del Toro & Kim Morgan.

Based on the 1946 William Lindsay Gresham novel of the same name (which was first adapted by Edmund Goulding in 1947), Guillermo Del Toro’s Nightmare Alley follows a mysterious drifter named Stan Carlisle, who is hired by a carnival and soon becomes fascinated by the mentalist techniques that his co-workers have made a living off. When he leaves the carnival to thrive off the techniques that he has acquired, he became infatuated by the power of his act and the money that they lead him to. It won’t be long until he decides to fool the wrong person.

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Top Ten Films of 2021

This is a list of the best films of 2021. There are many like it, but this one is mine. It is a little late, but pay it no mind. The film industry in 2021, like 2020, was still impacted somewhat by the COVID-19 Pandemic, though obviously not as much as 2020 was. It was a year that, to me, showed a lot of problems for the theater industry, as it was starting to look like film fans had become comfortable waiting for films to hit streaming services rather than to see them in theaters. Because exactly what films became hits last year? Like others have noted, they were pretty much all franchise films. In a way, it feels like HBO Max may have made it easy for American audiences to let go of the moviegoing experience, but, hopefully, the movie theaters will thrive again soon.

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94th Academy Awards: Final Predictions

I get it. We’re almost in April. You’ve probably already started to think about this year’s films and whether or not films like The Batman can secure an Oscar nomination next year. But AMPAS nevertheless decided that the Oscars ceremony celebrating 2021 films was to be held this upcoming Sunday. It’s been a long awards season, and it feels like some of the original frontrunners — like The Power of the Dog — have fallen behind in the race for the biggest award of the night. Now it looks like the crowd-pleasing CODA has overtaken the spotlight from the truly cinematic Netflix flick directed by Jane Campion. In this article, I’ll give you my final predictions for the 94th Academy Awards, along with some longer explanations for the biggest categories. Hollywood’s biggest night is almost here, but who will win? Read below to find out what I think will happen.

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REVIEW: West Side Story (2021)

The Jets, The Sharks, and Tony & Maria in Spielberg’s West Side Story – Photo: 20th Century Studios.

Directed by Steven Spielberg – Screenplay by Tony Kushner.

If you’ve been thinking that another West Side Story is pretty unnecessary, then you’re not alone. After all, Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins’ 1961 musical film adaptation of the Romeo & Juliet-inspired Broadway stage play ended up with eleven Oscar nominations and won in ten of those categories including Best Picture. Often regarded as one of the greatest musical films of all time, the 1961 film has made people very familiar with the story. So, did we need Steven Spielberg to make a new version of the stage play? No, we definitely didn’t. But here’s the thing. Let’s be honest, we also didn’t technically need another Batman reboot. We didn’t technically need three different live-action Spider-Men in the last twenty years. However, even though we didn’t need those films, just like how I loved the vast majority of the Spider-Man films, as well as the new Batman flick, I have to say that Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story is just wonderful. We didn’t need it, but I’m glad we now have it.

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REVIEW: The Green Knight (2021)

The titular character in David Lowery’s THE GREEN KNIGHT — Photo: A24.

Directed by David Lowery — Screenplay by David Lowery.

In the last decade, filmmaker David Lowery has made his filmography appear rather varied and really interesting. The thing is that while he has made these very independent films like this one and A Ghost Story, he has also tried his hand with some more populist films like the live-action adaptation of Pete’s Dragon, which I thought was surprisingly terrific. However, this, The Green Knight, is undoubtedly my favorite film of his thus far.

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