Directed by Doug Liman — Screenplay by Patrick Ness & Christopher Ford.
On paper, this should be a huge hit. It’s a science-fiction action film starring Tom Holland of Spider-Man fame and Daisy Ridley of Star Wars fame, they are surrounded by a more than capable cast including the incredible Mads Mikkelsen (Another Round), and the film was directed by Edge of Tomorrow‘s Doug Liman. And yet this is a film that has been through quite a lot of behind-the-scenes work. It has gone through several rounds of rewrites and expensive reshoots, and it, reportedly, was the victim of poor reception at test screenings. After having had its release delayed several times, Chaos Walking is now here, but while it has all the ingredients of a film made for me, it just doesn’t work as a complete package.
Directed by Adam Wingard (‘The Guest’; ‘Blair Witch‘; and ‘Death Note‘) — Screenplay by Eric Pearson & Max Borenstein.
Versus-films are certainly nothing new. Films with titles such as Godzilla vs. Kong will probably always make me think of Paul W.S. Anderson’s Alien vs. Predator and its tagline: “Whoever wins, we lose,” which, in turn, makes me think of both Ronny Yu’s Freddy vs. Jason and Zack Snyder’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. None of those films are necessarily highly regarded by the vast majority of film critics, though I enjoy a couple of them, but there is of course one versus-film that trumps them all, Robert Benton’s legal drama Kramer vs. Kramer. That Oscar-winning masterpiece, which is nothing like the aforementioned films, is however, to put it mildly, an exception to the general rule, which is that versus-films are — at least now — mostly known as these show-stopping mash-up popcorn films. That is certainly the case with Adam Wingard’s latest film. It is, as one expected, nowhere near as good as Benton’s film, but it is, however, better than most of the other films that I’ve mentioned in this paragraph. Because Godzilla vs. Kong is a fun popcorn movie, which, with these kinds of blockbusters, is all you can ask for.
The following is a review of The Grudge — Directed by Nicolas Pesce.
Though I haven’t rewatched it in years (for reasons that will become apparent in a moment), I think that Takashi Shimizu’s Sarah Michelle Gellar-led 2004 American remake of Ju-On:The Grudge is really effective. To be perfectly honest with you, it frightened me so much when I saw it at age eleven that it gave me nightmares. I thought about it for weeks. The creepy imagery still freaks me out. So, when I heard that up-and-coming filmmaker Nicolas Pesce was making a new film in the series, I was both nervous, scared, and intrigued. Unfortunately, I don’t think Pesce was able to breathe new life into the horror subgenre once ruled by Ju-On and Ringu. Continue reading “REVIEW: The Grudge (2020)”→
The following is a review of The Nun — Directed by Corin Hardy.
A funny thing happened when I sat down in a local movie theater room to watch The Nun — the newest The Conjuring spin-off film (this one having been inspired by a demon from James Wan’s The Conjuring 2). It was a packed theater full of people of all ages, shapes, and sizes, and right behind me, three young men sat and talked with one another. When the film opened with a scene from The Conjuring 2, I could hear one of them say: “wait, is this a Conjuring-movie?” Then another one said with his mouth full of popcorn: “oh, I haven’t seen the second one yet.” Continue reading “REVIEW: The Nun (2018)”→