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Letterboxd Reviews

So as you know, I stopped writing lengthy reviews on this site this year, keeping the blog as more of a film diary of sorts.  Lo and behold,...

Saturday, May 12, 2018

The Greatest Showman

The Greatest Showman (2017)
Starring Hugh Jackman, Zac Efron, Michelle Williams, Zendaya, Paul Strong, and Rebecca Ferguson
Directed by Michael Gracey
Written by Jenny Bicks and Bill Condon

Summary (in 500 words or less):  P.T. Barnum's life story from how he went from rags to riches thanks to his unique concept of a circus.



The RyMickey Rating: D+

Friday, May 11, 2018

The Beguiled

The Beguiled (2017)
Starring Colin Farrell, Nicole Kidman, Kirsten Dunst, Elle Fanning, Oona Laurence, Angourie Rice, Addison Riecke, and Emma Howard
Directed by Sofia Coppola
Written by Sofia Coppola
***This film is currently streaming via HBO***

Summary (in 500 words or less):  In 1864 Virginia, three years into the Civil War, injured Union soldier John McBurney (Colin Farrell) deserts the Army and is found by young Amy (Oona Laurence), a student at a girls' boarding school run by Martha Farnsworth (Nicole Kidman) and teacher Edwina Morrow (Kirsten Dunst).  Having not had a man in the house/school for a very long time, Martha, Edwina, and oldest student Alicia (Elle Fanning) begin to fawn over McBurney and their jealousies and insecurities may prove damaging to all parties.



The RyMickey Rating: C-

Thursday, May 10, 2018

It Comes at Night

It Comes at Night (2017)
Starring Joel Edgerton, Carmen Ejogo, Christopher Abbott, Kelvin Harrison, Jr., and Riley Keough
Directed by Trey Edward Shults
Written by Trey Edward Shults
***This film is currently streaming via Amazon Prime***

Summary (in 500 words or less):  A contagious outbreak has seemingly wreaked havoc across the United States.  Paul (Joel Edgerton), his wife Sarah (Carmen Ejogo), and their teenage son Travis (Kelvin Harrison, Jr.) have holed themselves up in a secluded house in the woods, venturing outside only when absolutely necessary.  When a stranger (Christopher Abbott) attempts to enter their house, Paul immediately doubts his intentions, but he eventually is won over and invites the stranger's wife (Riley Keough) and young son to stay with them.  Unfortunately, this kind gesture may end up being something Paul and Sarah will regret.



The RyMickey Rating: C

Wednesday, May 09, 2018

It

It (2017)
Starring Jaeden Lieberher, Jeremy Ray Taylor, Sophia Lillis, Finn Wolfhard, Wyatt Oleff, Chosen Jacobs, Jack Dylan Grazer, Nicholas Hamilton, and Bill Skarsgård
Directed by Andy Muschietti
Written by Chase Palmer, Cary Fukunaga, and Gary Dauberman

Review (in 500 words or less):  A group of young teens battle a malicious supernatural entity who oftentimes appears as a clown named Pennywise (Bill Skarsgård) and is wreaking havoc on their Maine town.



The RyMickey Rating:  B

Tuesday, May 08, 2018

The Discovery

The Discovery (2017)
Starring Jason Segel, Rooney Mara, Jesse Plemons, Riley Keogh, Mary Steenburgen, and Robert Redford
Directed by Charlie McDowell
Written by Justin Lader and Charlie McDowell
***This film is currently streaming via Netflix***

Summary (in 500 words or less): Scientist Thomas Harbor (Robert Redford) has proven the existence of an afterlife and in the years since his discovery, the suicide rate around the world has risen astronomically.  Following a television interview that goes horribly wrong, Harbor goes into hiding.  Several years later, upon visiting his secluded father, Will (Jason Segel) discovers the almost cult-like atmosphere taking place at his father's homestead where Thomas has hired people whose suicides have gone awry to help him.  Thomas's latest experiment involves videotaping one's afterlife experience, but Will rightfully worries that this new experimentation may result in even more folks wanting to end their lives.



The RyMickey Rating:  C+

Monday, May 07, 2018

Isle of Dogs

Isle of Dogs (2018)
Featuring the vocal talents of Bryan Cranston, Koyu Rankin, Edward Norton, Bob Balaban, Bill Murray, Jeff Goldblum, Liev Schreiber, Kunichi Nomura, Greta Gerwig, Frances McDorman, Scarlett Johansson, Harvey Keitel, F. Murray Abraham, Yoko Ono, Courtney B. Vance, and Tilda Swinton
Directed by Wes Anderson
Written by Wes Anderson


The RyMickey Rating:  B-

Sunday, May 06, 2018

Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie

Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie (2017)
Featuring the vocal talents of Kevin Hart, Ed Helms, Nick Kroll, Thomas Middleditch, Jordan Peele, and Kristen Schaal
Directed by David Soren
Written by Nicholas Stoller
***This film is currently streaming via Netflix***



Click here for my Letterboxd review

The RyMickey Rating:  B

Friday, May 04, 2018

The Cloverfield Paradox

The Cloverfield Paradox (2018)
Starring Daniel Brühl, Elizabeth Debicki, Aksel Hennie, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Chris O'Dowd, John Ortiz, David Oyelowo, Zhang Ziyi, Roger Davies, and Clover Nee
Directed by Julius Onah
Written by Oren Uziel
***This film is currently streaming via Netflix***



The RyMickey Rating:  D+

Thursday, May 03, 2018

Letterboxd Reviews

So as you know, I stopped writing lengthy reviews on this site this year, keeping the blog as more of a film diary of sorts.  Lo and behold, I then discovered a site called Letterboxd that is essentially just that -- an online film diary with the ability for members of Letterboxd to comment.  It's free and easy to sign up -- and you could start your own film diary as well.  For now, I'll be posting links to my Letterboxd "reviews" below.  We'll see how this goes...

Click here for a link to my Letterboxd home page

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) (2017)
Starring Adam Sandler, Ben Stiller, Dustin Hoffman, Emma Thompson, Elizabeth Marvel, Grace Van Patten, Candice Bergen, Adam Driver, Rebecca Miller, and Judd Hirsch
Directed by Noah Baumbach
Written by
***This film is currently streaming via Netflix***



Trying something new here...uncovered a new website that's a bit of a film diary.  Contemplating switching over to it completely, but for the moment I'm going to link to things there.  Explore Letterboxd...maybe you'll want to join too and we can comment on movies there!

Monday, April 30, 2018

Battle of the Sexes

Battle of the Sexes (2017)
Starring Emma Stone, Steve Carell, Andrea Riseborough, Sarah Silverman, Bill Pullman, Alan Cumming, Elisabeth Shue, and Jessica McNamee
Directed by Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris
Written by Simon Beaufoy

Summary (in 500 words or less):  In 1973, former professional tennis player Bobby Riggs (Steve Carell) challenged the popular Billie Jean King (Emma Stone) to a tennis match.  This battle of the sexes received much media coverage with the outspoken and braggadocios Riggs certain he'd prove victorious against the quiet, resolute King who was battling her own demons at the same time as she contemplated her sexuality when she begins to fall for a hairdresser (Andrea Riseborough) traveling with the ladies' pro tennis tour.

  • Great performances from both Emma Stone and Steve Carell are the highlights of Battle of the Sexes.  Together, they lift this otherwise generic biopic to a greater level.
  • The flick works very well during its first half as we get to learn about the private lives of Bobby and Billie Jean, but the actual Battle of the Sexes tennis match which makes up a large chunk of the final third feels a bit anticlimactic as most in the audience will already know the ending.  Tension never really mounts and the film unfortunately suffers because of the (admittedly necessary) emphasis on the titular match.
  • Nice production design definitely creates a 70s aesthetic that proves quite charming

The RyMickey Rating:  B-

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Avengers: Infinity War

Avengers: Infinity War (2018)
Starring Robert Downey, Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Benedict Cumberbatch, Josh Brolin, Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Don Cheadle, Tom Holland, Chadwick Boseman, Paul Bettanny, Elizabeth Olsen, Anthony Mackie, Sebastian Stan, Tom Hiddleston, Idris Elba, Benedict Wong, Pom Klementieff, Karen Gillan, Danai Guirra, Letitia Wright, Peter Dinklage, Benecio del Toro and Gwyneth Paltrow
Featuring the vocal talents of Bradley Cooper and Vin Diesel
Directed by Anthony and Joe Russo 
Written by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely

Summary (in 500 words or less):  Seemingly every single character from every single Marvel movie (with the exception of the Ant-Man cast for some reason) teams up to fight Thanos (Josh Brolin), a being who longs to collect six Infinity Stones scattered the universe in order to gain great power which he plans to wield in order to destroy half of the universe's population in order to create what he believes will be order across the galaxy.


  • I've watched every single Marvel movie, but I've got to be honest -- when it comes to these Infinity Stones that are front and center in this flick, their importance never registered a lick for me when I watched the flicks.  Fortunately, it's not difficult to catch on -- and likely through some type of unknown osmosis, I must have somewhat understood things about this concept in the multitude of other Marvel movies despite never really paying attention to them before.  Nevertheless, the six stones -- Mind, Soul, Space, Power, Time, and Reality -- would allow Thanos to be seemingly unstoppable in his quest and this flick, despite carrying the "Avengers" moniker in the title is really a "Thanos flick."
  • Interestingly enough, while Thanos is most certainly a "villain," his intentions carry much depth and by having this film focus so greatly on him, the audience is able to oddly connect with him in ways that we never really have done before with the baddies in the Marvel universe.
  • The flick is a ballsy one, quite frankly.  Much has been made about how no one is safe...and that's certainly true.  Multiple deaths pepper the film and a few of them even carry some surprisingly emotional resonance.  Whether the sequel to the film changes the path of these now-deceased individuals, we will have to wait to see, it still packs a visceral wallop at moments.  You won't be on a high after watching this one...in fact, it'll likely be just the opposite.  And for a big budget motion picture that's a risky move...but it does pay off for the most part.
  • Unfortunately, the film starts to drag after about an hour.  Action scene is stacked on top of action scene in the flick's final ninety minutes and the nonstop loud noises, explosions, and chaotic nature grow wearisome.  Yes, we get the standard Marvel humor peppered throughout -- which helps to make this company's films so much better than the dreary, "unfun" DC brand -- but it's not quite enough to boost this upward ratings-wise into the top five Marvel films for me.
The RyMickey Rating:  B-

Split

Split (2017)
Starring James McAvoy, Anya Taylor-Joy, Betty Buckley, Haley Lu Richardson, Jessica Sula, Sebastian Arcelus, Brad William Henke, Izzie Coffey, and Neal Huff
Directed by M. Night Shyamalan
Written by M. Night Shyamalan
***This film is currently streaming via Netflix***

Summary (in 500 words or less):  Three teenage girls are kidnapped as they leave a shopping mall outside of Philadelphia.  Their captor is Kevin Wendell Crumb (James McAvoy), a man with dissociative identity disorder -- he has split personalities.  Some of these entities are kind, but some are much more malicious...and the most evil of all is a man known only as "The Beast" whose strength is unmatched by normal man.


  • Unfortunately, it's that last sentence of the summary that makes Split falter because up until "the Beast" is introduced in the film's final twenty minutes or so, this film was utterly exciting, thrilling, and had me on the edge of my seat.  Writer-director M. Night Shymalan had returned to much of his former glory crafting a tense flick.  Unfortunately, things fall apart a bit at its conclusion.
  • That said, Split works for the most part.  This flick is all about the acting and Shymalan directs a great performance from James McAvoy anchoring the film.  He's buoyed by three nice turns from the teens whom he captures -- Anya Taylor-Joy, Haley Lu Richardson, and Jessica Sula.  
  • The claustrophobic sense created by Shymalan is felt by the audience and I will admit that I didn't necessarily see things ending the way they did.  SPOILER ALERT -- That said, Shymalan's insistence to tie this in to one of his prior films hurts it more than it helps it.  Perhaps in his upcoming film Glass things will come together a bit more, but as for now the ending of this film disappoints.
The RyMickey Rating:  B