REVIEW: Yesterday (2019)

Theatrical Release Poster – Universal Pictures

The following is a review of Yesterday — Directed by Danny Boyle.

What would you do if you woke up one day and found yourself in a world where no one knew of The Beatles? Just picture it. This world wouldn’t think of John, Paul, Ringo, and George when they thought of Abbey Road. People wouldn’t know the words to “Eleanor Rigby,” “Yesterday,” or “Back in the U.S.S.R.,” and you would be the only one in the world who could be the vessel and voice of their genius. Would you tell the world of their music, or would you make a career off of their work? In Danny Boyle’s Yesterday, the failing musician Jack Malik (played by Himesh Patel) finds himself in that situation after he is involved in, and knocked out by, a car crash during a worldwide power outage. Malik eventually decides to take credit for the song-writing to advance his career, but, in doing so, he soon realizes that he’s letting go of the person that means the most to him. Continue reading “REVIEW: Yesterday (2019)”

REVIEW: Murder Mystery (2019)

Release Poster – Netflix

The following is a review Murder Mystery — Directed by Kyle Newacheck.

I go back and forth when it comes to Adam Sandler. I love plenty of the audience-favorite comedian’s films. I think Sandler is gifted with tremendous dramatic talent, which he showcased with his performances in Paul Thomas Anderson’s Punch-Drunk Love and Noah Baumbach’s The Meyerowitz Stories. He is still a very funny stand-up comedian if his excellent Netflix special Adam Sandler: 100% Fresh is anything to go by. But, more often than not, Sandler is known for his comedies. More often than not, Sandler is known for his not-so-fresh, critically panned comedies. Sandler and Netflix have made about a handful of Happy Madison-comedies together, and, thankfully, though Murder Mystery isn’t exactly a home-run, it is far superior to the godawful, snoozefest that last year’s The Week Of, arguably the worst film of 2018, was. Continue reading “REVIEW: Murder Mystery (2019)”

REVIEW: Booksmart (2019)

Theatrical Release Poster – United Artists Releasing

The following is a review of Booksmart — Directed by Olivia Wilde.

Before I saw Booksmart, it had been impossible for me to avoid the online bombardment of incessant comparisons between Booksmart and Superbad. The comparison made sense, even when I hadn’t seen the film. This is a coming-of-age film about two best friends who want to have a good time before they leave for college. Also, one of the two leads in Booksmart is Superbad-star Jonah Hill’s sibling Beanie Feldstein. Having now seen Olivia Wilde’s directorial feature debut, I have to admit that it would be wrong to say that it isn’t very similar to Superbad. Thankfully, though, I grew up with Superbad. I love Superbad. So it pleases me to say that any comparison to Superbad is by no means meant to be anything other than a compliment of the highest order. Booksmart is a modern, sweet, and gender-swapped, next-generation version of Superbad and I loved every minute of it. Continue reading “REVIEW: Booksmart (2019)”

REVIEW: Long Shot (2019)

Theatrical Release Poster – Lionsgate

The following is a review of Long Shot — Directed by Jonathan Levine.

It would appear that I have a soft spot for Jonathan Levine films. His is a name that immediately gets me excited to watch a film if his name is attached to it. I am one of the few who thinks Levine’s 50/50 is a genuine masterpiece of the genre within which it belongs. Furthermore, I think his 2015 holiday film The Night Before has the makings of a modern Christmas classic — in fact, it has already become a tradition for me to watch that film every Christmas. Likewise, I really enjoyed my time with Long Shot, which is Levine’s attempt at Rogenesque romantic comedy with a political twist. While I doubt that Long Shot will become as memorable to me as the aforementioned efforts, I think it is another example of a hip Levine film that goes down well. Continue reading “REVIEW: Long Shot (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: Isn’t It Romantic (2019)

US Theatrical Release Poster – Warner Bros. Pictures

The following is a quick review of Isn’t It Romantic — Directed by Todd Strauss-Schulson.

Released in theaters on Valentine’s Day in North America and at the end of February on Netflix elsewhere, Isn’t It Romantic is a film about a woman tired of a stale film genre who, then, suddenly finds herself inside of such a film. The film follows Rebel Wilson’s Natalie, an Australian woman living in New York City whose mother turned her off romantic-comedies as they presented scenarios that ‘weren’t made for girls like them.’ Continue reading “REVIEW: Isn’t It Romantic (2019)”

REVIEW: Vice (2018)

Theatrical Release Poster – Annapurna Pictures

The following is a review of Vice — Directed by Adam McKay.

In recent years, comedy filmmaker Adam McKay has successfully changed his reputation in Hollywood. He was once thought of as one of the great funny-man directors of the industry, with such films as Anchorman and The Other Guys. But with 2015’s The Big Short — a film about the financial crisis of 2008 — McKay became known for his unconventional techniques in covering a disastrous true story. It didn’t work for everyone, but, for the most part, I really enjoyed his first foray into this style of political filmmaking.  Continue reading “REVIEW: Vice (2018)”