Action/Adventure

[8.0] Writer/director Sam Mendes (American Beauty, Skyfall) and co-writer Krysty Wilson-Cairns bring us back to the trenches of World War I with the harrowing journey of two British officers tasked with traversing enemy territory to deliver a message that will save 1,600 of their fellow soldiers from certain death — including one of the young men’s brothers. 1917 is compelling on two different levels, infusing …

[8.5] I am not a fan of car racing. I couldn’t care less about it, really. But like so many other great sports movies, Ford v Ferrari isn’t really about the sport itself. It’s about the people engaged in the sport. And to that extent, director James Mangold (Logan, Walk the Line) hits a home run with this true story about two men who overcome …

[6.0] A young boy in Hitler’s youth army (Roman Griffin Davis) finds himself in a moral dilemma after discovering a Jewish girl (Thomasin McKenzie) hiding in a secret space behind his bedroom wall. This film written for the screen and directed by Taika Waititi (What We Do in the Shadows, Thor: Ragnarok) has an off-beat, surreal sense of humor that wears thin over time. It’s …

[7.0] It’s best to go into The Rise of Skywalker knowing that this third Star Wars trilogy has never had a strong guiding hand. It’s not the result of a carefully premeditated creative effort. Creator George Lucas was not there watching over everything for these three films — and for good and for bad, it shows. Episode 9 is the result of a studio panicking …

[7.0] The impending apocalypse of Terminator and Terminator 2 Judgment Day was averted, but you can’t stop technological ‘progress’. Enter Terminator: Dark Fate, a direct sequel to the second film (ignoring two or three films in-between) that sets up a new cataclysmic countdown to doomsday, a new victim that needs saving, and a new savior sent from the future to protect tomorrow’s inspirational resistance leader. …

[8.0] On its surface, Joker is an origin story about Batman’s arch-nemesis. So at first glance, you might mistake it for ‘just another superhero’ movie. But writer/director Todd Phillips and actor Joaquin Phoenix have actually made a film that transcends the comic book genre. Joker works as a disturbing character study, an all-too timely allegory, and a provocative meditation on a theme — something we …

[6.0] Writer/director James Gray (The Lost City of Z) sends Brad Pitt into space in this film that takes place in the not-too-distant future. Pitt’s mission is discover if his long-lost father (Tommy Lee Jones) is the culprit behind attacks from Neptune that threaten human life on Earth, the moon, and Mars. You can think of it as a journey into Apocalypse Now‘s ‘heart of …

[6.0] Tom Holland is far and away the best reason to ever see a Spider-Man movie these days. He’s charming, charismatic, funny and incredibly watchable. So as long as he’s our Spidey/Peter Parker, I guess I’ll keep watching these spider flicks. What else is good about Far From Home? It’s nice to see parts of Venice and Prague. Some of Peter Parker’s friends have cute …

[3.0] Bruce Willis stars in this ill-conceived action comedy that’s neither exciting nor funny. Willis plays a master thief who’s hired to steal priceless artifacts created by Leonardo Da Vinci, so some bad guys can use Da Vinci’s secret technology to turn lead into gold. Isn’t that some shit? Along the way, he’s aided by his buddy Danny Aiello, and kinda falls for a vatican …

[7.0] Nicolas Winding Refn (Drive, Only God Forgives) serves up this meditative drama about a mute, one-eyed, pagan strong man (Hannibal‘s Mads Mikkelsen) who fights for the entertainment of his Norse captors way back around the year 1000 AD. He finally escapes and brings a young boy along with him. The two soon take up company with a small band of Crusaders looking for their …

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