Got out to see the most recent MCU film, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, and I had a blast! Check out my thoughts on the film in the video review below.
I’m back to reviewing movies (sort of)! I’ve been going to theaters since they opened here last July but this is the first time I’ve felt enough of anything to do an actual review of one of the films I’ve seen. The much anticipated Black Widow film came out last month. I saw it, and now I’ve posted my review. Check out my thoughts on it in the video below.
I saw five movies in July, all of which I really liked. Here is what I thought of them:
Saw the latest MCU installment, so of course, I had to do a review. These are my thoughts on Spider-Man: Far From Home.
Finally got my April Movie Wrap Up posted. I only saw three new films last month, and sadly the month started off with the year’s trend of not so great movies. Thankfully it ended with two really good films. Check out my thoughts in the video below.
I saw Avengers: Endgame a month ago and have some thoughts on it. Check out my review below, and, if you want some more in depth analysis, check out the podcast I was on here.
It took me long enough to get my March Wrap Up done. I saw four movies, three of which I really didn’t like, and one of which I thought was just okay.
Check out my thoughts in the video below.
For detailed reviews of all the movies I saw in the month of January, watch my Wrap Up. For just a few quick thoughts on each of the films I saw, here is a brief reflection.
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
Really great animation, and an interesting story. Thought the hype was a little overrated but overall really enjoyed the film.
Disappointing last minute turn of events that didn’t make any sense, and made the previous hour and a half feel pointless. The acting was okay and the film looked great but there was no action for a majority of the film, and the dialogue wasn’t that great.
The Kid Who Would Be King
This was actually quite entertaining. The kids were all pretty good and the story had a good message. The special effects weren’t the best and some of the plotlines were a bit cheesy and predictable but in the end it was entertaining for the two hours I spent watching it.
My sister doesn’t go to the movies very often, and it is near impossible trying to predict what she might end up liking. So, of course, when she told me that not only had she gone to the theater to see Venom (more than once mind you) but that she actually liked it, I was surprised. I know that she has always been a fan of the Spider-Man universe and that she had a particular fondness for Venom but I had heard so many terrible things about this film, I just couldn’t believe that’s what she decided to spend her time on.
Time went by and after receiving the DVD for Christmas, an opportunity came up for her to share her appreciation of the film with me. We started the day off with a viewing of Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse (which was quite a lot of fun), and then went back home to sit down and watch Venom.
I have to say, the film isn’t as bad as people say it is. It isn’t very good either but it’s not that bad. There are a lot of story issues, such as plot holes, messy exposition, and an expedited climax. The acting also isn’t the best, though I think Tom Hardy was having a lot of fun with the role, and of all the things I’ve seen him in, this is the film where I enjoyed watching him the most. At least he wasn’t just grunting or squinting his way through his scenes. The special effects look unfinished in a lot of areas but the Venom face effects look decent enough.
The best thing though that this film has going for it is its small scale storyline. I’ve mentioned in previous reviews how tiring some of the superhero movies can get because there is just so much destruction and so many lives lost that it becomes depressing to watch after a certain point. Venom takes place in one central location (San Francisco), involves one main bad guy and a couple of cronies, and the climax of the film doesn’t involve a whole city’s decimation. The consequences of the characters’ actions could have bigger implications but the battle at the end doesn’t.
I can see why my sister likes this movie so much. Despite its weaknesses, Venom was kind of a fun viewing experience, and it is an interesting character to base a movie around. I don’t see myself revisiting this the way my sister is eager to but I’m also not upset that I sat through it this first time.
In 2018 I saw seventy-two films in theaters, fifty-six of which were new releases. Below is a video in which I discuss my favorite films of the last year but first, a couple of honorable mentions.
This was a very straight forward, pared down film. It tells the story of the events leading up to and following the night that Senator Ted Kennedy drove his car off a bridge on Chappaqquidick Island. The filmmakers did their best to use only verified information to tell the story and I thought the result was very effective.
Avengers: Infinity War
Of course I loved Infinity War. I did a whole review project leading up to its release, that’s how excited I was. I worried a little that it wouldn’t be able to live up to all that had been built up but it did. Each of the characters got a good amount of screen/story time, and it still impresses me that they were able to get all of those people into one film and not have it feel overstuffed. As an added bonus I saw the film in Hollywood at a late screening Thursday (release) night and Kevin Feige and Joe Russo surprised the audience beforehand just to say thanks for being fans. That was an awesome, totally “Hollywood” experience, and it amped me up right before the movie started.
Mission: Impossible – Fallout
Here Ethan Hunt is dealing with the “fallout” of the events of Rogue Nation, and bringing together a team to yet again fight against a disaster of epic proportions. The Mission Impossible films have become kind of like the James Bond films in that they follow a typical formula and have recurring elements, which I think actually adds a lot to them, and makes the characters and storylines more meaningful. I enjoyed looking forward to this film, and prepared by rewatching and reviewing all of the previous films. In the end, I was impressed with the film’s ability to still surprise me with its incredible stunts, and unexpected heartfelt story.
The Old Man and the Gun
This was a nice surprise. Based on a true story, Robert Redford plays Forrest Tucker, a bank robber and prison escape artist. It is a slow moving story that really shines thanks to some solid, and understated performances. I wasn’t expecting anything from the film when I went into it and I thought the whole thing was rather charming. There is an especially great scene between Redford and Casey Affleck, who plays the detective investigating Tucker’s string of robberies.
I was a little wary of yet another indie film with a social message simply because there have been so many lately, and they’ve followed the same basic story structure. While Green Book does take on a more traditional format, and does have a social message at its heart, it stands apart thanks to the moving performances from its two leads. It is a story of two people from different worlds coming together that moves at a leisurely pace but really works thanks to Mahershala Ali, and especially Viggo Mortensen.
And now for my Top Ten Favorite Films of 2018: