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  • Wish Upon

    Wish Upon

    ★½

    This is a dud of a horror movie, with typical portions of recycled and predictable plot "twists" that also aren't ballsy enough to have real teeth. Clare is given a junked Chinese box by her father that ends up being a wishing box, and of course she starts making wishes, while the box begins exacting a payment for each wish made, with predictable results.

    While there's actually bits of character interaction here and there that belong in a better movie…

  • Blade Runner 2049

    Blade Runner 2049

    ★★★★½

    I think the second viewing just reinforces much of the perception of the first. Along with the confident and bold broad cinematography (where the world actually feels large and open), Gosling manages to convey a lot through minimal expression, and Ford carries a lot of disappointment and frustration of a man confined to spending his last years alone. I was indifferent to Wright's part (as I was indifferent to her role in Wonder Woman); she did not feel as natural…

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  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens

    Star Wars: The Force Awakens

    ★★★★

    Whether the reverberations of Lucas' first trilogy here are viewed as a homage and bridge between the old and new or as a lack of imagination will depend on one's personal tastes and the long-term intentions of the creative staff.

    There is a LOT of "The Force Awakens" that echoed things we've seen before. Some of the settings seem awfully familiar even if given other names, and from a high-concept level there's not much of a plot (First Order AKA…

  • Captain America: Civil War

    Captain America: Civil War

    ★★★★½

    In some ways, "Civil War" scans as an Avengers movie, as it is mainly concerned with the team's future on the international level and has a huge roster of probably 13-14 heroes. (At some point, I lost count.) But somehow the Russos pull this off without really diluting the characters; everyone seems to get the amount of face time they deserve based on the dynamics of plot and relationship, and each is firmly established in terms of what they want,…