• The Novice

    The Novice

    ★★★½

    Super impressive debut from Lauren Hadaway. The kind of first-time feature that shows assurance of tone and vision, indicating promising things to come. The movie itself is fine, shades of Whiplash for sure, but not as crowd-pleasing. Isabelle Fuhrman commands the screen - let’s give her more lead roles.

  • An Angel at My Table

    An Angel at My Table

    ★★½

    Cute, but punishingly long. Could have trimmed an hour and still had the same impact.

  • The Matrix Resurrections

    The Matrix Resurrections

    ★★★★½

    One more time before it leaves HBO Max. The ladies in the Hammerle house just don’t “get” The Matrix. They didn’t appreciate it, but I still did!

  • Rocky IV: Rocky vs. Drago - The Ultimate Director's Cut

    Rocky IV: Rocky vs. Drago - The Ultimate Director's Cut

    ★★★

    Look, I love Rocky IV. But I also love the robot, the montages, and the sheer ‘80s excess. Not enough really different with this director’s cut. A little more serious, but still has all the montages. Interesting curio for fans, but I’ll just stick to the original from here on out. Happy birthday, Paulie.

  • Gravity

    Gravity

    ★★★★★

    Cuaron. That’s it. That’s the review. Bullock is pretty tremendous too. Still good at home, but few movie spectacles beat seeing this in theaters for the first time.

  • Shampoo

    Shampoo

    ★★★

    Largely plotless, but amiable. Wish it was a tad funnier - technically a dramedy, but its heart seems to beat for the comedy genre. Cast, soundtrack and style are all on point though.

  • National Lampoon's European Vacation

    National Lampoon's European Vacation

    ★★

    This wasn’t very good. I’d seen bits and pieces before but never the whole thing. Probably my least favorite Vacation, including the Ed Helms reboot. Certainly the worst iteration of Griswold kids. Always fun to see William Zabka though, even in a very small part.

  • Sweetie

    Sweetie

    ★★★½

    Oddball dark comedy that has several moments that stick with you. Didn’t know Campion had this kind of weird energy in her. Big improvement over Two Friends.

  • Misery

    Misery

    ★★★★½

    Wonderful script by William Goldman. Tightly directed by Reiner. Bates and Caan are both fantastic. Farnsworth’s sheriff is a delight. Such a classy, minimalist thriller. Gets the blood pumping and puts the viewer in its main character’s hobbled shoes. Perfect for watching in January. But what ever happened to Misery the pig?

  • Naked Gun 33⅓: The Final Insult

    Naked Gun 33⅓: The Final Insult

    ★★★

    Packs in a million gags a minute, and about 20% land, which is pretty good! Plot is nonsense, and there’s way too much time spent in a fertility clinic. Also just as trans-phobic as Ace Ventura, so that doesn’t hold up. But this is better than 2, and the Oscars climax comes close to achieving the frantic comic energy of the original’s baseball game.

  • Scream

    Scream

    ★★★

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

    Clever in spurts, better than 3, but something’s missing. Maybe Wes. Maybe Marco Beltrami. Maybe Williamson. I didn’t like how they integrated Sidney & Gail. Dewey fares a little better. New cast members are fine I guess. No Scream movies are bad, and this one mostly delivers. Fans of Once Upon a Time in Hollywood will not be surprised by one of the killer reveals.

  • Legally Blonde 2: Red, White & Blonde

    Legally Blonde 2: Red, White & Blonde

    ★½

    Not a bad idea to send Elle to Congress, but boy is this lacking in execution. Reese does what she can and earns that paycheck, but this is bargain basement sequel-making. Truly terrible.