Tag: Drama

Girl

On the second night of Fantastic Fest my screeners gave to me, a film with a non-descript title!

Girl premiered on Friday, September 25, the second night of Fantastic Fest, but the review is coming late (despite me watching it early) because I wanted to also be able to link a review with the director. That interview is here.

Girl is unique in that out of all the movies coming out this week for the festival, it already has a publisher (out in November) and actually has some actors your are likely to recognize! And that probably makes it the most hyped up film of the festival.


This is the most non-descript Thorne has ever looked. 
Girl (Bella Thorne) travels home. Girl has letter. Girl mad at someone? Girl mad at daddy. Girl want kill daddy!

Girl in small town. Girl don’t remember others. Girl go to house. Girl can’t find daddy. Girl eventually find daddy. Daddy dead! No! Girl want kill daddy! Daddy already dead. 🙁

Girl tell cop (Mickey Rourke). Girl tell others. Girl fend off Charmer (Chad Faust). Girl sleuth. Girl figure out mystery. Girl find daddy killer.

Also starring Lanette Ware, Glen Gould, and Elizabeth Saunders.


A lot of zoomed in faces, what is this, Les Miserables?
Girl gives off a real small town vibe in a few ways. One, small amount of locations. Two, the locations used are run down. And three small amount of characters.

Speaking of characters, they all are not given names that are given to us, but referred to by other things like Girl, or Charmer. It gives a unique “everywhere” feel to the film, and lets you insert your own character names into the roles if you’d like. It also makes the IMDB page for these actors look like they did when they first were getting roles in tv and film.

The story for this movie is really simple, but one that has emotional weight. This is all mostly due to Thorne in the lead role. I know she has a lot of flack lately for various reasons, but she does nail this role.

Given the simplistic nature, I did want something a bit more overall still. I personally could never feel attached to the store and only maintained a small interest in its resolution. I needed some other hook to really go hard with the emotional journey they went on.

It definitely is a film with promise and does a lot with its presumed limited resources at the disposal. And worth it for those fans of Thorne.

2 out of 4.

The Argument

Sometimes partners argue. It can be over what color the linens need to be, or it could be what color the sheets need to be. It could be over the color of the shower curtain or even the color of a new carpet. I believe couples only argue over colors, if I am not mistaken. I can say that because I don’t fight with my wife.

The Argument film is a straight to VOD picture directed by Robert Schwartzman, who is definitely the brother of Jason. This is actually his third film, so it shouldn’t be too surprising that some famous people joined it, but also, he is from a pretty famous family and probably has tons of clout. I haven’t seen his other films, but one is about a unicorn or threesomes or something.

Anyways, this intro is definitely going nowhere fast, except to this picture right now!

love
Aw, these cute little love birds are going to argue? I don’t see an reason why.

Jack (Dan Fogler) and Lisa (Emma Bell) have been in a relationship for three whole years now. They sometimes fight, but they usually reconcile, but generally there always has to be a winner. Jack is in love and wants to propose to her, in front of their great friends, in a special night in their home. Lisa just finished her role as Constanze in a run of Amadeus, her biggest role as an actress. Jack is a writer, who has written a script for one whole movie!

And after Jack’s friend (and agent) and his partner get to their home (Danny Pudi/Maggie Q), Jack is ready for a quiet and fun evening. But oh no! Another couple shows up. Paul (Tyler James Williams) and his girlfriend (Cleopatra Coleman). Paul was also in the Amadeus play as the lead, and did a lot of flirting with Lisa from their characters, and this makes Jack uneasy.

One thing leads to another, discussions and dancing and drinking, and an incident happens at the end of the night that neither feels they are responsible for. So they are going to create the night, with the help of their friends, to figure out who is actually right, and the other arguments that branch from the festivities as well.

Also starring Karan Brar, Mark Ryder, Marielle Scott, Nathan Stewart-Jarrett, and Charlotte McKinney.

couch
“i’m glad you joined me tonight for a recreation of a recreation again and again.”

When I heard the description of this film, I just thought it would be a strange remake of RashĂ´mon. You know, the classic Japanese film where people retell the story from their point of view and they are all different. That is my effective, yet bad description of RashĂ´mon! Anyways, it made sense that this one would be the same way, but with six people at a small party.

And I was wrong! First of all, which is both bad and good. It is bad, because what they actually did wasn’t great. The main character tries to literally create the night and conversations with the same people, doing the same food prep, without anyone telling his goal first. It is completely ludicrous. The only reason there is buy in from the others is due to their own arguments and trying to work it out together. And again, it is really dumb seeing this apparently night after night after night. That part feels more ridiculous than anything else.

However, it did finally surprise me for the final night of the argument. It changed things up, and it did it in a fun way. I really loved the ending, making the movie go from an average (to bad with the way things were going) to a pretty good one overall. If they could have made the middle part a bit better, we could have had an excellent film. Why even have someone with a “photographic memory” if they are going to barely use the feature?

I especially liked the extras which I kept vague for a reason. Maggie Q and Cleopatra Coleman were some of the better characters from my point of view, and I also really enjoyed Karan Brar, who grew up from some Disney shows apparently.

3 out of 4.

Words on Bathroom Walls

Oh my goodness, some more theaters are opening up and things are getting “national releases” at this point, depending on where you are in the country.

Words on Bathroom Walls was scheduled to come out in late July, but never really moved when the rest of the exoduses began to happen, and then just creeped back barely a month, to find a time it can come out and be appreciated at a social distance.

So this review was written quite awhile ago, is what I am getting at.

Words on Bathroom Walls is a book from the last decade, about high schoolers dealing with issues. That isn’t specific. I think I have noticed a bigger trend lately on high school literature is that they might be able someone who has a maybe misunderstood illness, to give these protagonists a better shake on how their lives run and understanding. Sure, these things have been done before, but they were often not well researched, or went extremely basic with the issues, becoming offensive on their own.

That is one of the main things I will look for with this movie. Does it explain things beyond the stereotype? Does it feel fair? Does it educate and still tell a good story? Has the research been done?

dance
And of course, most importantly, will there be a prom?

Adam (Charlie Plummer) is a senior in high school, and he has now had a real big old panic attack. It happened in Chemistry. It causes a friend of his to get hurt. He started hearing and seeing things that were not there, it was very frightening, and all of his classmates were witness to his meltdown.

You see, it turns out that Adam has schizophrenia, and it all sort of just hit him at once. He can see and hear three main different people in his life. There is Rebecca (AnnaSophia Robb), a free spirited girl, there is Joaquin (Devon Bostick), a horny friend from a 90’s film, and there is a bodyguard (Lobo Sebastian), an intimidating person who is just trying to protect him. And there is a fourth darker voice that he can hear occasionally, and is especially dreadful.

But this isn’t the only thing going on in Adama’s life. He is a senior in high school, and would still like to graduate on time. So he has to start at a new private school. His mom (Molly Parker) was raising him on his own for a long time, so Adam became a good cook to help their family unit out, and eventually she got a new spouse to help out (Walton Goggins), but Adam doesn’t like or trust him.

Adam’s biggest worries are trying to ignore these voices, to appear normal to his new friends and classmates, and survive until graduation. Then he can go to culinary school and be happy. He also has to deal with experimental medication that can clear the voices but might effect him in different ways. And he also has to deal with Maya (Taylor Russell), the smartest girl in school who has taken an interest in him and him to her.

Eventually Adam will realize everyone has baggage, and his just might be harder to cope with.

Also starring Andy Garcia, as a priest,

graduate
oh, I also need my teenage fiction to include a graduation ceremony.

Okay, a movie dealing with schizophrenia, at the high school level, with a cast of characters that include different/voices in a characters head (and appearing around him from his mind) to offer advice throughout it. My immediate thought is, oh no, this is going to be wacky, and they will be a constant source of shenanigans or voices, and this feels stereotypical schizophrenia.

But! They are not throughout the film. Because he is taking trial drugs to help deal with the voices, so they do in fact leave for large chunks and it still can tell a compelling story about living with schizophrenia by making it also a film about dealing with the need to use a drug to better function (and the side effects those drugs can bring). I feel like the schizophrenia was handled with a large amount of respect. When I researched if the author researched enough for their book, I found no complaints by any schizophrenia organizations. So if it is schizophrenia approved, I have to assume it got things right and avoided potential offense, great job team.

Watching this movie actually made me want to read the book, and I still plan on it if I can find a local copy (I do not want to use Amazon to buy it). The book is written from the point of view of Adam telling about his life and stories to a therapist, and so you take the role as the therapist in the book. They do acknowledge that in the movie, and have a few therapist scenes where Adam is talking to the camera instead, to get that same feel, but I am sure it is not as strong as the book, because we get to actually see events.

I thought Plummer was a really good lead for this film and Russell was a great co-lead, with her own problems to deal with, and their relationship felt like it grew at a realistic pace, with realistic pitfalls.

Another shout out goes to Parker, for being a great mom dealing with all of this, and also Goggins, playing an extremely normal role based on what he has done in the past. That of a step-father trying to be supportive of his step-son and doing the right thing, without being able to get really close.

Honestly, this movie packed a lot of punches in the right spots for me emotionally. It told a good story, about schizophrenia, without also only being about schizophrenia. It was relatable for other reasons, and hit me emotionally. I don’t think my high rating is just because of the lack of good films this summer, I hope not, but I definitely fully recommend people giving this movie a chance. Maybe not in theaters, depending on your safety concerns, but whenever it is available at home.

4 out of 4.

The Secret: Dare to Dream

Hey! Come over here. Closer. Closer. I got a secret. Let me tell you it in your ear.

AHHHHHH!

Hah, got you. Remember a decade plus ago when The Secret was a thing? Some book about unlocking the key to the universe! It lead to vision boards, if I am not mistaken. Put positivity out there, and it will come back to you with rewards and money or something. I dunno, I never read the book. They made a documentary about this topic.

And now we get a movie! The Secret: Dare to Dream! It has a fancy subtitle to, you know, daring you to dream. It thinks you are a bitch and won’t take the dare. Come on chicken, bawka bawka. Do it. Dream. They dare you.

train
That envelope better have fat stacks of cash.
Negative Nancy Miranda Wells (Katie Holmes) is so goddamn bitter. She has her reasons. Her husband died, and he was an engineer, about to come out with this great invention to make them super rich. But he died. So she is raising three kids (Sarah Hoffmeister, Aidan Pierce Brennan, Chloe Lee) mostly on her own. Her boss at a local fish restaurant is also her now boyfriend (Jerry O’Connell), which makes her feel uncomfortable when he steps in to pay for things.

And he makes her just feel uncomfortable in general, but she isn’t in it for love, just survival at this point, and her mom (Celia Weston) adores him.

This is when Bray Johnson (Josh Lucas) slams into her life. Or at least the opposite, because she slams her vehicle into his. We see Bray being super happy and helpful with people, so he is super happy and helpful with her too. Sure, no worry about insurance, let’s help fix your vehicle. Oh and roof. And other things. Help help help. Thanks stranger!

Why is this guy so positive and obsessed with Negative Nancy Miranda Wells? Can he make her happy?!.

mvp
Jerry O’Connell, playing the asshole boyfriend most of his career.
I definitely went into this film ready to just hate it. Don’t give me this nonsense. The Secret has some good life advice, but don’t turn it into some mystical thing, you know?

The beginning was very much on point with making this movie feel like the 90’s or 00’s. “Miranda Wells has so much shit on her plate! How can it get any worse?!” But you know what? Lucas is very charismatic and sweet. Hard not to get lost in his eyes, his work ethic, and his…secrets.

You see, not only is The Secret about The Secret way of thinking, but there is also a big Secret in this film. We have layers to our secrets.

And that is the reason why my rating dropped. The characters reactions at a certain birthday party came out of nowhere, and became a trope of easy to fix miscommunication makes people mad and upset. But it was even worse, because even with miscommunication, there was little justification for causing a scene the way it occurred. The movie fell back into the trash pit, and stayed there, especially as things fixed them self in one of the most ridiculous ways possible.

Overall, this movie has little going for it and is definitely a decade too late.

1 out of 4.

Hamilton

I am not throwing away this review, but I am going to keep it short and sweet.

Bless Lin-Manuel Miranda, who decided in 2016 they needed to shoot their musical with the original cast. They could have held on to this for over a decade and waited and waited. They said it would come out October, 2021! And then? Then pandemic.

And now it is out much, much, much earlier. On Disney+ so most people don’t have to pay much at all to see it, versus the theaters (Which it should still go to when it is safe, I would buy that ticket).

Thank you for spending three days getting this filmed, including the off-Broadway day for all of the cast and crew, putting in extra shows to make this thing out there.


It’s Alexander Hamilton, singing on the screen for you.

Wait for it! The entire original cast and crew is in this picture!

Anthony Ramos, Chris Jackson, Daveed Diggs, Jasmine Cephas Jones, Jonathan Groff, Leslie Odom Jr., Okieriete Onaodowan, Phillipa Soo, RenĂŠe Elise Goldsberry, and Sydney James Harcourt.

And its the Hamilton musical, damn it! This is my plot outline. It is about Alexander Hamilton and some more people. There.


The room where this whole thing happened was actually in a theater in Broadway!
A phenomenon greater than most other phenomenon, I can die happy now that this is available. I never could see it on stage, and I likely wouldn’t now anytime remotely soon thanks to pandemics. This is a blessing and we should cherish it.

This counts as a movie for the year? I’ll take it. Now I have given two 4 out of 4s so far this year.

What are you waiting for, what do you stall for? It’s available now, go see it.

One last time, this musical is love.


My wife said I needed some more review aspects to this, fine. I cried five times despite hearing this musical so many times, some of my cries were new, some where at the same time I cried during just the music.

A few songs were enhanced thanks to the visuals. Like Satisfied, and seeing King George in more scenes. The use of moving stage was used wonderfully. The ending is so much better (of an already awesome song) with the dancers and background.

I will note that Odom Jr.’s Burr uses a much more lispy voice in this recording versus the original cast recording. I assume that was done in the main show way before it, maybe it is easier to sing with that voice in the long term, maybe it is to make him seem a bit more sneaky, but it is noticeable and completely acceptable.

4 out of 4.

7500

Can they make flight hijacking films worth it? I don’t think there have been hundreds on this topic, but a few already and they take place in such a small space. A plane. And there is a good chance that we will know how they end. After 9/11, there is almost no way it ends with the plane going into a tower, that is for certain. Either the good guys win, or it crashes somewhere else, but that is it.

Where can this genre go?

7500, not to be confused with Flight 7500, is a German/American film and was originally going to star Paul Dano before delays and scheduling conflicts. No matter how good this film is, I am going to say it would hav been better with Dano. I love Dano.

train
This is a poor man’s Dano.
Tobias (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) is a co-pilot, young with his future right in front of him. He also has a girlfriend as a flight attendant, so that is nice, assuming no weird power dynamic is at play. The main pilot, Michael (Carlo Kitzlinger), is ready for take off and is pretty experienced. They take off from Berlin, should be a nice quiet night.

Just kidding! Highjackers!

A group of men immediately try to get into the cockpit when an attendant is bringing them food!

Oh no!

Tobias is able to close the door to the cockpit with only one man getting in the pit, and also help knock him out, but the pilot is a goner. Tobias has to man the flight on his own (which is okay) but he did get stabbed in the arm. He has to deal with a man inside the cockpit who could come to at any moment, and two men trying to barge their way in and are willing to kill hostages to get the door open.

What is a man to do? The air traffic controller tells him to do an emergency landing in a nearby city and to under no circumstances open the door. But when they target his girlfriend and other innocents, can he really keep his composure?

Also starring Hicham Sebia, Omid Memar, Passar Hariky, Aylin Tezel, Paul Wollin, and AurĂŠlie ThĂŠpaut.


Always gotta be looking back scared, come on man. Eyes on the road.

Why Mr. Gorgon? Why should I watch this film? Does it offer anything unique?

Thanks for the leading question to the last part of my review! Yes, this film has one reason to give it a chance. Outside of some security tapes at the very beginning, and one other part, the entirety of the film takes place in the cockpit.

So yes, you are going to get a whole lot of JGL on your screen. He isn’t always on the screen. Sometimes our focus is outside of the front window, or the other characters in the cockpit, or more importantly, on his video monitor of what is happening behind the door when talking with the terrorists.

If anything, this definitely changes the way we see cabin fever, and builds on the claustrophobia and sense of being trapped in an unwinnable situation. That is where the movie shines.

I also have a theory. If they didn’t give us subtitles for the non-English languages it would have helped with the fear and helplessness. Because Tobias only knows English, so can’t even communicate well with the staff. This changes things if the viewer understands German or Arabic or Turkish (I believe all three are spoken), but then we could have added some scarier elements overall.

Instead, we get a normal story told in a better than normal way. It has fine acting, a lot of yelling, and some hard moral choices overall. Definitely worth a gander, since it is free on Amazon Prime.

2 out of 4.

The Vast of Night

The Vast of Night is certainly not a film I had heard of before receiving a screener. Starring no one famous, by a first time director, with a low budget, not going to theaters.

“But nothing is going to theaters now!” Well, yeah, I know that. But this might have never gone to theaters if they were open. Instead, it is on Amazon Prime (as of Friday, May 29).

And now you know why I am just going to start the intro.

operator
And after this review, we will plug you back into your regularly scheduled scrolling on your social medias.

DJ Everett (Jake Horowitz) and Fay Crocker (Sierra McCormick) are two younger kiddos living out in New Mexico in the 1950’s. They are both hip in the tech world too. DJ Everett is the host of his own radio show in his local community, full of interviews of people from town and elsewhere, hoping to make it big and leave his small community. Fay is interested in the future of technology and getting better at it herself, and is his switch board operator for the show.

During one night, most of the community is caring more about a local basketball game, but the show must go on. And in the early parts of the show, Fay hears a strange noise, one she has never heard before, nor has anyone she asks. In fact, when she brings this to Everett’s attention, this becomes their new focus, playing it for others to see if they can help them figure out what made that noise.

And they get a call. A mysterious person. Saying they heard the noise before, long ago, but afraid to let that story go public. This leads to another story, more secrets, more missing people, and more disbelief.

But this is 1950’s New Mexico and a small town, what could possibly be tormenting this town?

Also starring Gail Cronauer and Bruce Davis.

caller
Yes, we get people talking on the phone, get hyped!

This is clearly a film on a small budget. Don’t worry, it is obvious to the viewers what must be going on really early on, and only isn’t obvious to those in the movie given the time period it is taken during. A lot of it is a set up for the ending, but despite the budget, you will get to see something for those afraid they won’t.

Most of it is teasing to the ending, as I just said, so we are relying on characters literally just talking to each other. Thankfully, the director decided to go with long takes for most of these conversations, so they ooze out natural pacing and behavior. One of the two main story tellers is only able to be heard on the phone, but Davis has a nice voice to listen to and helped really start the build of the tension. I know what you are thinking. A movie with people talking on the phone for awhile? Is it like Locke? Eh, not really.

It is relatively slower paced early on and really takes awhile to feel tense, but by the end tense it is despite the still relatively low stakes. The cinematographer and composer really put in good work to make the build up. It was an average movie for most of it until it built up by the end.

The leads of Horowitz and McCormick work extremely well together and do a lot of work with not just their words, but their faces as well. They have that curiosity and drive to solve their own mystery with their own individual reasons behind it.

The Vast of Night is a low key film that will build up the thrills by the end, dealing with strange sounds and radio waves, and great performances from its leads.

3 out of 4.

Selah and The Spades

Another week, and surprisingly, another new movie review.

Selah and the Spades I don’t believe was negatively impacted by the theaters going down. I didn’t hear about it until that started, but when I first heard the news, it was only to hear that it was being released on Amazon Prime instead of theaters, on April 17th.

This is not a film that you have heard of before likely, with a mostly unknown cast. It does have Jharrel Jerome as a supporting role, and he made waves last year starring as Korey Wise in When They See Us last year. You know, the kid who got screwed over the most.

And all of that has nothing to do with this movie!

chairs
There is a lot of fierce power in that chair.
Selah (Lovie Simone) is a strong woman, a senior in high school. She goes to an elite boarding school in Pennsylvania, where most of the citizens are from wealthy families looking for a leg up into college. Other bright minds get in through scholarships and grants. Selah comes from an overachieving household, her mom wants her to go to her former school, and to load up on the best classes, the best grades, no matter what.

The school also has their own hidden clubs. They handle some of them ore illicit activities, like distracting the admin, holding parties, etc. Selah? She is the lead of The Spades group, who handle the illegal drugs and alcohol on campus. They do all of the deals, get the product, make the money. They split responsibilities and have council meetings to work together so that no more “wars” take place on campus, which usually lead to many expulsions, or worse.

When Paloma (Celeste O’Connor) comes to campus mid year, she is seen as a promising student who can join in their creepy club games, but Selah definitely takes a liking to her. Selah is strong, but hates having those under her excel. It is hard for her to trust, and she doesn’t have a backup to take over when she leaves. It is time for the grooming, and for her to sink or swim.

Also starring Jharrel Jerome, Ana Mulvoy Ten, Jesse Williams, Nekhebet Kum Juch, Francesca Noel, and Henry Hunter Hall.

rocks
This rock rocks. 

Selah and the Spades, on one hand, is another clique teenage film. I mean, these cliques don’t circulate the entirety of the campus (although, cliques are usually small anyways). It is a boarding school, so it can pretend to be like a college film with more underage problems. The cliques have cute names!

But here are some difference.

There is one very strong scene early on where the Selah and the other cheerleaders are talking to the camera, breaking the wall, about being strong women and it was really really good. It seemingly came out of nowhere, but it had important messages that needed to be discussed.

We do also have a predominately more person of color than most school clique films. Yes, they are all for most of history super white. It is great to see representation, even if this representation for the most part still talks about people with privileged.

I really enjoyed Simone in the lead role hear. Selah is not a one dimensional character at all. She is more than a strong woman. She has fears, she has definite trust issues, and definite weakness. I definitely sort of hated her at points, and it is great to realize she is in no way the hero of the story. O’Connor comes in and gives a very great performance opposite of Simone’s, that newcomer feel while also knowing full and well who she is at the same time.

Overall, Salah and the Spades gives us a unique perspective on a tired clique, and falls firmly in a drama category to tell a serious story. It reminds me in a bit of Dear White People, due to topics only, because in terms of genre and goals, they are very wide apart.

3 out of 4.

Never Rarely Sometimes Always

 

Oh what is this? A new theatrical release but on VOD? This is the first? 

Sure, Trolls World Tour (which comes out on April 10) is a much bigger movie that was meant to come out in theaters and is instead going straight to video for families. And there have been a lot of recent movies that were in theaters for a short time having VOD releases way early to make up for the money lost.

But Never Rarely Sometimes Always hadn’t made it to theaters yet and it was supposed to, and is now getting released digitally instead. So it is the first to really do this. 

And that is brave of them, even if they are a much smaller project. Especially a project with a theme like this one that would have maybe sparked protests anyways, and we don’t want protesters to protest, because then they’d be in groups. Even if they have dumb opinions. 

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Me judging people with dumb opinions. 

Autumn (Sidney Flanigan) is just a girl, living in a world, that isn’t the nicest to teenage girls. She has a job as a grocery clerk, where she and her cousin, Skylar (Talia Ryder) are definitely getting harassed by a boss.

Autumn is mad a lot of the times. Her parents (Ryan Eggold, Sharon Van Etten) don’t seem to give her a lot of attention due to their plentiful amount of kids, and her dad is a full on ass towards her. She has emotions, is getting bullied, and doesn’t know why she is so angry.

And then she finds out she is pregnant. About ten weeks. But she lives in Pennsylvania, in a small community, and the only place that was free for her to use was an organization that would never let abortions happen, complete with all the lie filled propaganda. And a parent would have to be involved.

So Autumn does what any girl would do. Sets an appointment in New York City, steals money from her dipshit bosses, and along with her cousin, go to get the deed done quickly and quietly, with hopefully no problems along the way. (There will be problems along the way).

Also starring ThĂŠodore Pellerin.

nyc
Just two teenage girls on a fun filled middle of week NYC trip to get an abortion. I’m surprised this jolly movie wasn’t made decades ago. 

 

I had this thought when I first saw the movie, I swear. It isn’t hyperbolic because of the closing of theaters. But this is my favorite movie of the year. So far.

And yes, the last few weeks have had movies pushed out, some of which already pushed to next year. There is going to be a big lull in films for the rest of the year, so I have no clue what this sort of landscape will bring for cinema. This might remain my favorite movie of the year, the only one that I have given this rating to so far.

Now, this movie is not funny. It is a realistic take on the subject, it is serious, and some not great things happen. The scene where the title comes from definitely wrecked me emotionally. And that is why my intro wasn’t spent making fun of it like I originally planned.

I love that this film comes out the year after the terrible, propaganda induced Unplanned movie (sponsored by Ted Cruz). That one made my worst of the year list (spoilers). It took everything from the anti-abortion list playbook and tried to make it seem like a true story in incredibly deceptive ways. 

This film is quiet. It is just a story. And yes, an abortion happens. Does that make it pro abortion? Maybe. What it really does is highlight how shitty these various state by state laws are that make it incredibly hard for people to get out of a tough situation. And that isn’t cool.

4 out of 4.

 

Blinded By The Light

What is this year? Two movies about Asian men being super into some older band?

We had Yesterday, about The Beatles, and now we have Blinded By The Light, about The Boss, Bruce Springsteen.

Sure, neither of these movies are at all related. One a mystical event wiping them from the world. Another a realistic tale about a dude who just liked Springsteen decades later to an obsessive degree. Yet, at the same time, I feel like they will forever be linked in the future despite everything.

And you know, because of people like me.

boss
People like me, who don´t get to look good in plaid.

Javed (Viveik Kalra) has had a typical Pakistani upbringing. Well, he has been living in London for most of his life, that is different. But his father (Kulvinder Ghir) and mother (Meera Ganatra) are strict, and have his whole life planned out for him. Same for his sister (Kit Reeve).

Despite having a British best friend (Dean-Charles Chapman) across the street, who got to do everything, Javed had to watch and live vicariously a lot of the time. When it got to be time for graduation and college, Javed liked to write poetry, but that wouldn´t lead him to a good career. He couldn´t follow his passions in writing, he had to do something that would make him some money.

Dealing with racism, not fitting in, and a home life that doesn´t care, Javed found a home in one of his fellow South Asian friends, Roops (Aaron Phagura), and his love for a man named Bruce Springsteen. Javed immediately began to connect to his music, about the struggles of life and found a new passion in it all. His music encouraged him to try new things, to date, to follow his passions, and of course, to write.

But following your dreams doesn´t mean you will be on a path of least resistance.

Also featuring Nell Williams, Tara Divina, and Hayley Atwell.

room
The most appealing part of the room is just how clean it all feels.

I didn´t like Yesterday because the story was a mess and bad all over. I didn´t like Blinded by the Light because I failed to ever care.

This film almost received a 0 from me, but it had some nice scenes at the end. Mainly the protest scene and the arguments with his family scenes. They brought me in a little bit. But everything else felt so forced, and more importantly, slow.

It felt like an eternity to get through this movie, and took awhile to get to a real point. It doesn´t offer anything new on the basic side of things. Kid wants to do something, parents do not want him to do it, and he is able to do it anyways for success! Yay!

Is it better because its a true story? Because its about Springsteen? None of these inherently make a great story. And if it is a true story, it still fails to tell me why it matters. This kid, if he grew up to be a famous song writer or author, we don´t know. At the end we know he grew up to go see Bruce Springsteen in concert a whole lot of times.

Setting the bar quite low for reasons to make a movie here.

1 out of 4.