• Sonic the Hedgehog 2

    Sonic the Hedgehog 2

    ★★★

    First hour and a half: not peak cinema

    Last half hour: peak cinema

  • After Yang

    After Yang

    ★★★★★

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    There is no something without nothing 

    I had to end my drought of doing film reviews because I just simply have to talk about After Yang, the latest from director Kongonada. It’s very easy to talk about how well put together After Yang is. The cinematography uses its soft lighting and lush greens to create a nice, lo-fi aesthetic. Long shots on simple moments, such as tea swirling in a glass, or the tops of trees waving in the air, all…

  • The Lost Daughter

    The Lost Daughter

    ★★

    This film really didn’t do anything for me. The directorial debut for Maggie Gyllenhaal, the The Lost Daughter is an extremely slow-burn drama that focuses on Leda, a college professor on her summer vacation. This movie is extremely eventful, with significant plot points being Olivia Colman stealing a child’s doll, as well as Colman being attacked by a pinecone. The film dragged incredibly long and lacked significant substance. Flashback scenes would also drag longer than needed. While I enjoyed Jessie…

  • The Hand of God

    The Hand of God

    ★★★★

    I had viewed CODA earlier in the day, a film that is straightforward with its plot and doesn’t reinvent the wheel but still offers a sweet tale of love and family. 

    The Hand of God, however, isn’t as straightforward with its plot. This film is chalked full of recurring symbolism, like a VHS tape of Once Upon a Time in America that never gets watched, or a sister that doesn’t leave the bathroom the whole film. It is rather difficult…

  • CODA

    CODA

    ★★★★½

    What a way to kick off 2022 with a viewing of Siân Heder’s CODA. I have been hesitant on the Apple TV+ subscription service, but after watching both CODA and Swan Song, the service seems to be worth the price. CODA is a coming-of-age flick that focuses on Ruby, the only hearing person in a deaf family. Throughout the film, we are presented with the internal turmoil that Ruby is going through: pursuing her dream of becoming a singer, or…

  • Kate

    Kate

    ★★★½

    Boom Boom Lemon

    One of the biggest surprises of the year for me was how good this film was. My expectations for Netflix originals are pretty low, with so many lowlights (Fractured, Rattlesnake, Earthquake) in Netflix’s catalog. Going into Kate, I expected a very generic action film with nothing more to offer. While the film isn’t perfect or the best action flick I’ve ever seen, it did just enough to separate itself. 

    Kate oozes the Neo-Tokyo aesthetic. Neon-lit alleyways and…

  • Nightcrawler

    Nightcrawler

    ★★★★½

    Releasing in such a strong year for film, with Interstellar, Whiplash, and Grand Budapest Hotel, Nightcrawler still manages to stand out as one of the best movies of the year.

    This slice of life thriller is an anxiety-inducing, heart racing drama that keeps the audience on the edge of their seats. Nightcrawler is a portrait of corrupt media and sociopathic nature, and this is brilliantly displayed through Jake Gyllenhaal’s acting. We have heard it a million times since this movie…

  • Halloween: Resurrection

    Halloween: Resurrection

    Resurrection is distasteful and arguably the worst entry in the Halloween franchise. Everything that made Halloween great is missing from this flick. Laurie Strode’s character is mishandled in the worst way possible, Michael is at his least intimidating, and there is no sense of suspense whatsoever.

    It’s rough for your movie when the best part of it is Busta Rhymes laying down a Kung-fu beat down to Michael Myers. Time to rewatch Halloween 78’ to cleanse my palate after this dumpster fire of a film.

  • Annette

    Annette

    ★★★

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    Beauty and the Bastard 

    I’m not a fan of musicals, and that can’t be helped. I love music and movies passionately, but I don’t like when the two worlds are joined together. However, I have to appreciate this movie for what it does from a technical and thematic perspective. Over-the-top performances drive this film, with both Adam Driver and Marion Cotillard at their peaks. Marion has a heavenly voice built for opera, and can we talk about Driver's singing chops?…

  • Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings

    Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings

    ★★★★

    So you’re telling me those dragons were acting? 

    In all seriousness, Shang-chi is one of the best films to come out of the MCU and certainly the best origin story to date. Shang-chi doesn’t feel like a film that follows the same cookie-cutter origin formula most Marvel films follow. In fact, I almost forgot I was watching a Marvel film at all. Instead, Shang-chi is an excellent martial arts flick with rich Chinese culture and stunning visuals. 

    Simu Liu kills…

  • Raya and the Last Dragon

    Raya and the Last Dragon

    ★★½

    Raya and the Last Dragon is such a beautiful-looking movie that it’s a shame that the themes and plot of the film were so lackluster. We get stunning visuals, some of the best I’ve seen in animation ever. Every character model is thoughtfully put together and detailed, down to every hair. The world-building is immersive, and every location in the film was diverse and aesthetically different from one another.

    However, the whole theme of trust in Raya was very questionable, as…

  • Reminiscence

    Reminiscence

    ★★½

    Reminiscence is a movie I wanted to like so badly and even debated giving it the above-average rating of 3 stars, but I can’t find it in myself to do so. Reminiscence presents some great ideas, such as memory retrieval/reliving technology, as well as the background narrative of rising sea levels and a clash between the lower class citizens and the barons who own all the “dry land.” I thought these were all great ideas that could have been built…