The French Dispatch

"Theatrical release poster": A group of about 50 people.

With The French Dispatch, once you get used to the Wes Andersonnes of his film making, it is actually very amusing and fun to watch!!!

Real Rating:

4 Stories

What I Like:

-I enjoyed the different stories it brought out, it was amusing and fun to watch these stories come to life, plus the star cast really brings it home for some these stories and the lives of journalists in general

The So So:

-Wes Anderson is an acquired taste in his movies, and this one is no different, but for this one, the cinematography and set designs were top notch, however, the storytelling in a different form can be a little confusing, it will take some time to get use to what is going on, but once you do, you can enjoy what the film brings

What I Didn’t Like:

-Like any Wes Anderson film, it can drag at times, no matter how beautiful are the visuals, your patience can be wearing thin to understand the main point if it all

Overall:

I actually enjoyed this Wes Anderson film. It is unique, amusing, and fun. You just have to get use to all the Wes Andersonness of his film making. Once you do, you are in for a treat with the different stories, and the fine acting of it all. What else can I say? You know what you are getting yourself into once you know who directs it!!!

Real Rating:

4 Stories

Dune

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Dune’s great cinematography and direction in action exceeds from the original movie, but the expositional storytelling just isn’t my cup of tea!!!

Real Rating:

4 Expositions on Spice

What I Like:

-The one thing that blew me away is the cinematography, it is shot amazingly and really pops out the special effects and the scenery in the background
-Speaking of special effects, it made the movie fun, especially the second half of this film, the designs of the planes (I know they are called differently, don’t come at me) is a marvel to see

The So So:

-The first half of the film full of exposition on top of exposition almost made me lost focus, and tell myself here we ago again with this boring sci-fi, but once it started to gain traction, I started to understand it more, and it really is an interesting story to understand
-The acting was lot better executed than the original, it wasn’t as awkward and weird, and excruciatingly hard to understand, this was fine, I don’t like the whispering parts, but I do like the sign language part, and it does add better depth to the character development, though it is still weird on how some characters talk, but whatever

What I Didn’t Like:

-I didn’t know that this was a two part movie series, so I thought the ending was horrific, that it didn’t solve anything, but when I found out there is one more movie planned, I understood, but still, they need to tell me these things

Overall:

This is lightyears beyond measure a better Dune film than the original. I didn’t read the book, but I believe it does the book justice this time. Director Denis Villeneuve really did care about this story, and really showed it as how it was suppose to look. Yes the exposition was too much, but once it starts unraveling, it became fun. I believe the second part to this movie will be something great, and I’m kind of on board. Just please no more boring expositions!!!

Real Rating:

4 Expositions on Spice

Ron’s Gone Wrong (Sidenote: The Guilty)

Ron's Gone Wrong (2021) poster.jpg

Ron’s Gone Wrong is charming and witty, but for the story it brings, it’s just a little too late!!!

Real Rating:

3.5 Friend Benches

What I Like:

-It is witty and charming, I mean, who is not going to like the B-bot, Ron, Zach Galifianakis voicing Ron is a real charming treat, and was really the stand out in this film
-The themes it brings is hugely relatable, and I hope pre-teens and teens and can learn something from it, and hopefully calm down when it comes to their electronics

The So So:

-The story is a good story, with all that said, an earlier movie called The Mitchells vs. The Machines did it first, and probably more effectively and fun with their story and message, their both fun, but with Ron’s Gone Wrong, it has become a trope now

What I Didn’t Like:

-I thought the whole thing about friendship just felt a little bit forced and weird, and even with Ron’s charm, it still feels awkward

Overall:

It is a fun and charming movie, and I give most of the credit to Zach Galifianakis voicing the B-bot, Ron. He was perfect for the role of Ron, and really brought some great life into it. As for the overall message, since The Mitchells vs. The Machines went first with it, this movie was too late. With all that said, I believe pre-teens and teens, and maybe even some college aged students need to watch both films back to back. The message about technology and how people are obsessive towards it can really be a mind blowing lesson learner. At least that is my hope, but who knows!!!

Real Rating:

3.5 Friend Benches

(Sidenote: The Guilty – If you love Jake Gyllenhaal, you’ll see a lot of him when watching this movie on Netflix. Most of the movie is him behind a computer screen with a headset, and occasionally yelling at it. With that said, this film has some powerful moments, and some really dark moments. What is genius of it, you only hear about these moments, and you’ll react the same way as Gyllenhaal’s character will react. It’s a good watch for sure!!!
Real Rating: 4 911 Dispatchers)

The Last Duel

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The Last Duel storytelling wasn’t great, but the drama and action kept you engaged!!!

Real Rating:

4 Joust Matches

What I Like:

-It isn’t a Ridley Scott movie without some action, and you get to it early and at the end, the duel scene was fun and thrilling
-The drama of an accusation of rape kept it engaging, and seeing how it was handled can be either awed or cringy, regardless, you want to see what happens with the accusation and trial, it can be interesting and ridiculous at the same time

The So So:

-The execution of the story was the good old trope of telling three different viewpoints, it was fine and all, but it was a little choppy to begin with, but once it starts unraveling, it all makes sense in the end
-The acting was good, but it was weird for a film set in medieval France, that they were talking in British accents, even weirder that Ben Affleck and Matt Damon sounded more American, bottomline, it wasn’t authentic enough, but at least you get some great acting by Jodie Comer who plays Marguerite, the woman who was raped, her performance was riveting for sure

What I Didn’t Like:

-It can be really slow at times where you can lose focus, unfortunately, I was telling myself, get to the duel part, because it was making me impatient
-Ben Affleck’s hair in this role, what were they thinking

Overall:

It is a good story once you piece it all together. I know for some, people will find it horrifying, but for others they can find it interesting and engaging, and maybe even both. With all that said, to me it showed how life was in medieval times, and how ridiculous and cruel people can be in handling certain things. The acting is weird and take some getting used to, but the overall drama is pretty good. What’s fun is the action we see, especially the duel which a lot of us are waiting for. It is good enough for everyone watching to enjoy!!!

Real Rating:

4 Joust Matches

Needle in a Timestack (Sidenote: The Forever Purge)

Needle in a Timestack.jpg

Needle in a Timestack is an interesting premise, but the execution was slower than two tortoises racing each other!!!

Real Rating:

3 Memory Losses

What I Like:

-The story is interesting about having the ability to time travel, and how it is supposedly controlled, it is an interesting concept, and the paranoia that follows

The So So:

The acting was fine, a little awkward at times, but the chemistry seems to be flowing very well

What I Didn’t Like:

-The execution of everything is very slow, the dialogue seems to be all over the place, and the lack of action doesn’t help its case, for an interesting story, you can lose your focus very quickly

Overall:

It is an interesting concept on a time traveling story. It has a good cast, but the execution of everything was slow and off at times. I got the gist of everything, but there were times where I lost my focus. It try to be something, but in the end, it fails to make it exciting. Time traveling shouldn’t be so boring!!!

Real Rating:

3 Memory Losses

Forever Purge poster.jpg

(Sidenote: The Forever Purge – Another Purge movie pretty much about the same old thing. This time dealing with immigrants at the Mexican border. At least this time it really shows the true dangers of this “holiday,” and how evil racist people don’t care about order. The action was fun and entertaining at the very least, but the the scary part for me is that I believe something like this can happen in real life!!!
Real Rating: 3.5 Purges)

No Time to Die

No Time to Die (2021) - IMDb

No Time to Die may drag in certain scenes, but it is a satisfying conclusion to the Danial Craig’s era of James Bond!!!

Real Rating:

4 Aston Martins

What I Like:

-It’s everything you need in a James Bond movie, cool action, great cinematography of certain cities, and the unique villains it brings, it has all the makings of a Bond film
-The direction of Cary Joji Fukunaga was awesome, the action scenes were intense, and really made some nice shots of landscapes and what not, blended together, it was beautifully shot
-As far as the story goes, it does give a satisfying conclusion to Danial Craig’s portrayal of James Bond, to me, he is one of my favorite Bonds, and most of his movies were gritty and action packed which I loved, the way things concluded was an appropriate ending

The So So:

-There was a lot of scenes that dragged in this film, but it is exposition that we need to understand the bigger picture, but with it’s runtime, it had me at ends, and asking to get to the point, and hit the climax of it all
-There were some characters that were very brief which can be disappointing, some expected like Christoph Waltz as Ernst Blofeld, but some disappointingly short like Ana de Armas, regardless, when they were there, it was great

What I Didn’t Like:

-Rami Malek played the main villain, Lyutsifer Safin, and I wasn’t really feeling him as a villain, I thought his acting was too soft and boring, and also a typical villainy trope for a Bond villain, I expected a lot better from Malek, but he is nowhere near as memorable as Mads Mikkelsen or Javier Bardem

Overall:

Even though this is not as good as Casino Royale or Skyfall, it is still good enough Bond flick to keep you entertained. It may drag with exposition and the villain may not be memorable, but it is a satisfying conclusion for Danial Craig as James Bond. It may be emotional for some of you all, but I appreciated Craig’s work in making the character James Bond fun again. To me he is up there with the great Bond portrayals, and the movies will be memorable for the action and grittiness. Who knows who is up next to portray him, but one thing is for sure, they do have some big shoes to fill!!!

Real Rating:

4 Aston Martins

The Many Saints of Newark

TheManySaintsOfNewarkPoster.jpg

The Many Saints of Newark was fun, but it left me wanting more, and I doubt people who didn’t watch the show will be as effective to them!!!

Real Rating:

3.5 Mob Soldiers

What I Like:

-After recently watching the original series, this was a fine prequel, seeing younger versions of the characters and what they did back in the late 60’s early 70’s was fun to see
-What really made this fun was the actors they got to portray the younger characters, they got the looks and the mannerisms down to the T, and of course Michael Gandolfini playing a young Tony Soprano was a great gesture to portray his late father in this iconic character, plus Corey Stoll playing a younger Junior Soprano was very spot on

The So So:

-The story was interesting, seeing the mobsters life in Newark, New Jersey in the late 60’s early 70’s was interesting, I also liked how they tied it in with the Newark Riots in 1967, however, it did seem like they try to put a lot into a two hour movie, which lead to some plotholes that left me wanting more to see what happens next, but seeing how a young Tony Soprano was raised by his uncle Dickie Moltisanti does explain a lot on why Tony became the man he was in the series

What I Didn’t Like:

-I believe if you didn’t watch the series before watching this movie, it won’t be as fun then for the people who did, there’s definitely a lot of fan service here, and for the others, it might be a typical mob movie
-One casting I didn’t like was John Magaro as Sylvio Dante, I liked Sylvio in the series because he was always the voice of reason, but here I didn’t think John Magaro quite captured his character as his younger self

Overall:

If you’re a fan of the series, you will enjoy this movie. With that said, I can’t say the same for the people who hasn’t watched the series. It could be nothing special for them. The casting was great seeing all the characters as their younger selves. The story was interesting, but it left me wanting to see more. The huge plotholes does make me hope for a sequel to this prequel. If not, than it is just an average movie for everyone!!!

Real Rating:

3.5 Mob Soldiers

The Addams Family 2

The Addams Family 2 poster.png

The Addams Family 2 may give some chuckles, but overall, it is the same old same old!!!

Real Rating:

3 Songs Sung by Lurch

What I Like:

-Once again, great animation where the action scenes excel brilliantly for this type of film
-The voice cast was spot on once again including some newbies like Bill Hader and Wallace Shawn

The So So:

-It had some moments and jokes where I actually laughed, I give credit for the puns and the dark humor which is the schtick for an Addams Family movie, but some are complete misses as well, I would say about 50-50 where the jokes stick, but when it does, it’s gold

What I Didn’t Like:

-It is the same old Addams family trope that we all know, maybe fans will love it, but for it just got old, and the story became very predictable
-There were also moments that were too outrageous that didn’t quite make sense, yes it is a kids movie after all, but it has to have some logic, right?

Overall:

You see one Addams Family movie or TV show, you practically seen them all. Only difference is that they slap on a road trip. I know fans will love and defend it, but for me, it is whatever. I give credit to the animation, voice acting, and some jokes, but the story is one big old Addams family trope. Once it ended, I pretty much just laid out a good Lurch grunt, and left the theater!!!

Real Rating:

3 Songs Sung by Lurch

Venom: Let There Be Carnage

Venom Let There Be Carnage poster.jpg

Venom: Let There Be Carnage is a mockery to the famous comic book story, it didn’t take itself too seriously, and not even the direction of Andy Serkis could save this!!!

Real Rating:

2.5 Symbiote Fights

What I Like:

-The hair on Cletus Kasady was an improvement from the last film

The So So:

-The development of Cletus Kasady and his background is very dark and tragic, and Woody Harrelson portrays him creepily well, however, in the end, it was all about love and revenge, and really made the villain Carnage more vulnerable than it should be
-I thought director Andy Serkis did a fine job with the action and the CGI for this film, however, the blend of darkness and action doesn’t create a good picture for me to really enjoy the action

What I Didn’t Like:

-I don’t like this portrayal of Tom Hardy as Eddie Brock, they make him too weak, and that relationship with Venom was just way too bromancy for my liking, it almost felt like a romantic comedy, bottomline I believe we need better justice for Eddie Brock than how these movies are portraying him
-Without spoiling it, the mid credits scene just made me shake my head in disappointment saying, “Freaking Sony!!!”

Overall:

I wanted to like this, but my skepticism was so high. Venom and Carnage are on my my favorite story arcs in the Spider-Man lore, and these movies just don’t give it justice. Eddie Brock is portrayed to weak and vulnerable, Carnage was not psychotic enough, and it is not the same without Spider-Man in this mess. The action and direction may be decent, but it is not enough to give my favorite antihero any justice. I said this once and I will say it again, Sony needs to give up the Spider-Man rights to the Marvel Studios where it belongs!!!

Real Rating:

2.5 Symbiote Fights

Blue Bayou

Blue Bayou (film).jpg

Blue Bayou is an emotional rollercoaster where the power comes from the story than the obvious theme!!!

Real Rating:

4.5 Tattoos

What I Like:

-Other than the clear political message, I believe what makes this story powerful is the story and character development which makes it interesting and watch worthy, the way it unravels will tug on your emotional heartstrings and hopefully for the right reasons
-Justin Chon who not only wrote and directed it, he also starred in it, the way he immersed himself to the New Orleans cajun culture, he also brought this story to life and relate to him on all the things he is going through, it is a marvel to see him work
-I liked how they showed a new angle of the the culture of New Orleans, instead of showing the touristy side of it all, it just showed the realness of a blue collar worker living in the city

The So So:

-I know some will love the ending, while others will hate it, regardless, I thought the ending was as real as it could be with everything that happened throughout the film, though the last ten minutes can be tropey, the emotion can make the trope forgettable

What I Didn’t Like:

-There are some times where it slows down big time, it is minimal, but you can feel it

Overall:

This can be a powerful movie, and the more that people watch it, the more awareness will rise. Forget about the politics, and just watch it for the story it is telling. It can speak volumes to what people are experiencing today. I give credit to Justin Chon for his hard work on it, and the passion he brings. I feel this is a true Oscar contender!!!

Real Rating:

4.5 Tattoos