REVIEW: Doctor Sleep (2019)

Theatrical Release Poster – Warner Bros. Pictures

The following is a review of Doctor Sleep — Directed by Mike Flanagan.

How do you please the fans of two very different masters of storytelling (i.e. Stephen King and Stanley Kubrick) when the storytellers’ understanding of The Shining differs so much that the author, Stephen King, once disowned director Stanley Kubrick’s extremely popular adaptation? How do you continue the story of The Shining on the big screen, when King and Kubrick’s endings are in conflict with each other? Those questions made the adaptation of Stephen King’s Doctor Sleep, a sequel to his hit novel The Shining, an incredibly daunting task exactly because audiences would expect it to also be a sequel to Kubrick’s beloved masterpiece. Mike Flanagan, a promising horror filmmaker who adapted Stephen King’s Gerald’s Game into a terrific Netflix film, was eventually chosen for the difficult task. Ultimately, I think Flanagan, who both wrote, directed, and edited Doctor Sleep, did an outstanding job. Flanagan has confidently united two clashing visions in this quite satisfying, but undeniably unnecessary sequel. Continue reading “REVIEW: Doctor Sleep (2019)”

REVIEW: Zombieland: Double Tap (2019)

Theatrical Release Poster – Columbia Pictures

The following is a review of Zombieland: Double Tap — Directed by Ruben Fleischer.

Belated comedy sequels scare me. They certainly don’t scare me as much as the flesh-eating living dead can, but whenever I hear about a sequel to a comedy that came out a decade ago, or longer, I get a chill down my spine. I watch these trailers with a concerned look on my face, and I’m always ready to cover my forehead with my palm if the trailer frustrates me. 2014’s Dumb and Dumber To was a terribly disappointing belated sequel to Peter Farrelly’s 1994 comedy classic, and Ben Stiller’s 2016 sequel to Zoolander might be one of the worst comedy sequels that I’ve ever seen. So when I pressed play on the first trailer for Zombieland: Double Tap, which has been released ten years after the original comedy hit came out, I was more worried than I was excited. To tell you the truth, I absolutely hated that trailer, which is exactly why I was so pleasantly surprised to see that Zombieland: Double Tap is one of the rare belated comedy sequels that actually works. Continue reading “REVIEW: Zombieland: Double Tap (2019)”

REVIEW: Insidious: The Last Key (2018)

Theatrical Release Poster – Universal Pictures

The following is a review of Insidious: The Last Key — Directed by Adam Robitel.

Insidious: The Last Key is the fourth film in the Insidious-franchise. This one is a prequel film that is centered around Lin Shaye’s character, Elise, and how she grew up. In The Last Key, a demon brings Elise back to her childhood home to face up to her past. Meanwhile, she attempts to fix her relationship with her brother, who doesn’t want to see her.
Continue reading “REVIEW: Insidious: The Last Key (2018)”

REVIEW: Annabelle: Creation (2017)

Theatrical Release Poster – New Line Cinema

The following is a review of Annabelle: Creation – Directed by David F. Sandberg.

Annabelle: Creation is a prequel to 2014’s Annabelle, which takes place twelve years prior to the first film. The film follows Sister Charlotte (played by Stephanie Sigman) and a group of orphans who move into the house of a former dollmaker, Samuel Mullins (played by Anthony LaPaglia).

The Mullins family lost their daughter to an accident twelve years earlier, but they are now ready to open their house to kids that will, at the very least, liven up the place. But not all dolls are created equal, and the Mullins family has one very special doll hidden in their daughter’s old room. That doll ‘is’ Annabelle, and she is ready to play on the young orphans’ fears. Continue reading “REVIEW: Annabelle: Creation (2017)”

Doctor Strange: Are We Getting a Sequel? – Marvelous Monday #57

'Doctor Strange,' Buena Vista - Marvel Studios
‘Doctor Strange,’ Buena Vista – Marvel Studios

It’s been a little while since Marvel Studios released the fourteenth film in their cinematic universe – Doctor Strange – and it’s gone pretty well. So well, that I thought I’d start discussing whether or not we’re getting a sequel. However, I will be talking about spoilers for the film in this post. Continue reading “Doctor Strange: Are We Getting a Sequel? – Marvelous Monday #57”

REVIEW: Star Trek Into Darkness (2013)

Promotional Poster - Paramount Pictures
Promotional Poster – Paramount Pictures

The following is a movie review of Star Trek Into Darkness. This review was written in 2016. Expect spoilers.

J. J. Abrams Star Trek from 2009 made me interested in the franchise. It made me a Star Trek-fan. I love the 2009 film so much that Star Trek Into Darkness was my most anticipated film of 2013. I was reading message boards every day. I watched the trailers over and over. I was so ready to love the film. But ultimately it didn’t really meet my expectations. However, that doesn’t mean I dislike the film. Not at all. Continue reading “REVIEW: Star Trek Into Darkness (2013)”

REVIEW: 10 Cloverfield Lane (2016)

Theatrical Release Poster – Bad Robot – Paramount

The following is a review of ’10 Cloverfield Lane’, a Dan Trachtenberg film.

Let’s talk about expectations. The tagline of the film, “Monsters come in many forms,” is the truest representation of the film. With the original Cloverfield we were treated to a found-footage monster movie, but 10 Cloverfield Lane is a much more polished, suspenseful, and mysterious thriller. It is a very different movie, so manage your expectations. But I think I actually like 10 Cloverfield Lane more than its titular relative.  Continue reading “REVIEW: 10 Cloverfield Lane (2016)”

REVIEW: Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Sword of Destiny (2016)

Release Poster – Netflix

The following is a review of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Sword of Destiny, a Netflix Original Film.

Netflix Original Films had a pretty good track record prior to the release of this Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon-sequel. Beasts of No Nation is an excellent BAFTA-nominated war drama, and The Ridiculous Six, though awful and offensive, isn’t without its supporters, as it is such a ‘by-the-book’ offensive gross-out comedy. It saddens me to say that Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Sword of Destiny makes Beasts of No Nation look like the exception to the rule that Netflix films aren’t that great… Continue reading “REVIEW: Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Sword of Destiny (2016)”