Joker Review

MOVIE REVIEW: How Combustible IS “Joker” (& Can Kids See It?)

There are two things you should know before reading my Joker review. Continue reading →

Jillian Bell

MOVIE REVIEW: Is “Brittany Runs a Marathon” Inspirational or Insipid?

I had overlapping screenings this week, so Kristin and Meggan became my pinch-hitters again. I appreciate their conflicting reviews of Brittany Runs a Marathon though, and find it interesting that society still sees a woman’s Years of Questionable Judgement as some kind of hole that we fall into. Is that phase of stumbling along (literally and figuratively) not just an essential part of growing up for many women AND men? Or is it just the excuse I’m still using twenty years later? Either way, here are Kristin and Meggan’s reviews of Brittany Runs a Marathon (Thanks Ladies!):

KRISTIN – Theory: I am too close to the subject matter in Brittany Runs a Marathon to fully enjoy it. Or…maybe I’m a narcissist? Up for debate. Either way, I went into the screening of this Sundance hit ready to BE ENCHANTED. BE INSPIRED. In the end? Yeah…it was…good? I think? Continue reading →

It: Chapter Two

MOVIE REVIEW: Can “It Chapter Two” Do the Impossible? (& Parent Review)

Director Andrew Muschietti is attempting the impossible with It Chapter Two, by recreating a story that was damn-near indecipherable to begin with.
Want proof?
Sit down with five fans of the original Stephen King book and ask them to explain the ending of It. You will probably get five equally confusing answers.
The ending wasn’t the reason we fell in love with It though. Fans like me were pulled in by the young heroes from the first half, who battled evils that were supernatural and man-made. We didn’t care about that second muddy act because we were still riding a high from Part 1. Continue reading →

Bernadette
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“Where’d You Go, Bernadette” – Fans of the BOOK Review the MOVIE

Have you ever wondered how film critics get to see movies before everyone else? Well, early screenings are usually held to promote the film’s release, but sometimes those screenings occur on the same damn night. That’s what happened this week with Where’d You Go, Bernadette? and Good Boys, so I had to chose one. I desperately needed a Comedy and picked the latter while some girlfriends offered to cover Bernadette for me. I’m tempted to NOT share their review though, because it’s far funnier than anything I’ve ever written. Well, read it anyhow and remember that I do have my funny moments (they’re just few and far between).
“A Dumb Person and a Smart Person See a Movie Together” Continue reading →

Good Boys
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MOVIE REVIEW: How BAD is “Good Boys” (& Parent Review)

Remember when you were about 11 or 12-years-old and were suddenly expected to know everything? It happened right around middle school, when you could still comfortably sit in a child-sized desk but your peers inexplicably became familiar with sex, drugs and other decidedly adult things. It forced you to either fake knowledge or be labeled a “baby,” even though you had no real interest in that stuff anyhow.
I remember that time clearly because my incorrect use of the word “organism” made my friends laugh until they heaved.
That is Good Boys in a nutshell. Continue reading →

Scary Stories

Parent Review: Is “Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark” TOO Scary for Kids?

If you or your kids are fans of the Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark book series, you don’t need to read this review. You probably have your tickets purchased and are prepared for it to NOT be as good as the books (I haven’t read them but according to those who have, it isn’t). You’ll see it anyway and you will be prepared for those terrifying images because you’ve already seen them. Illustrator Stephen Gammell was partly responsible for the series’ enormous success 30 years ago, because his depictions were so original…and horrifying. Some of those images are expertly transferred to the big screen, and they are what blew me and my daughters out of the water. Continue reading →

Zack Gottsagen

Why Everyone in the WORLD Needs “The Peanut Butter Falcon”

I’ll get to The Peanut Butter Falcon in a minute, but first I need to tell you about someone I loved.
My Aunt Jo Ann was born with Down Syndrome, so I grew up thinking every family had a celebrated member like her. She was different, yes, but she was also our collective heartbeat. She finished our prayers, decided on restaurants when we went out and Jo Ann always got the best piece of chicken at dinner. She was close to all of us in her own way, which is how I knew Jo Ann wasn’t like the shallow depictions we usually see of someone with Downs. She had loads of friends at the school she attended and dreamed of a family. She had healthy crushes on the dreamboats of her day (like Elvis Presley and William Shatner) but Jo Ann had a dose of salt too and would put you in your place if needed (ask me about the time she called me a “fat pig.”).
Jo Ann died from pneumonia last year and my family aches from the loss like it just happened. I visited her grave two weeks ago and still struggled to accept that she wasn’t waiting elsewhere for us, asking to watch Caddyshack again.
That’s why I can’t review The Peanut Butter Falcon without bias. I watch young Zack Gottsagen onscreen and see the embodiment of everything Jo Ann hoped for. Recognition. Acceptance. And a burning desire to be a part of the world everyone else takes for granted. Continue reading →

Yesterday

MOVIE REVIEW: Rediscover The Beatles in “Yesterday”

Things simply don’t exist anymore in the world of Yesterday.
It all started the night a blackout occurred and caused struggling musician Jack Malik (Himesh Patel) to be hit by a bus. Everything in the world has progressed like normal since, but without certain iconic things…like The Beatles. Jack Malik appears to be the only person who remembers them, so he does what any struggling musician would do:
He claims those songs for his own and enjoys almost instant fame.
It doesn’t come without a price though. Continue reading →