Joel has written 88 reviews for films rated ★★★★ .

  • Licorice Pizza

    Licorice Pizza


    Paul Thomas Anderson's latest hang out movies in the vein of Dazed and Confused, Licorice Pizza does a great job imbuing the spirit and feel of the 70s through its smooth cinematography and political themes while also being darkly hilarious and deeply heartfelt in its story at the same time.
    The story of Alaina Kane(Alaina Haim) and her relationship with Gary Valentine (Cooper Hoffman), a minor, is done in such a tasteful way and their relationship feels so natural thanks…

  • The Gentlemen

    The Gentlemen


    Guy Ritchie is back to the British crime action films that made him such a great director(Snatch, Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels) and that slick stylistic look that made those films so crisp along with a cast that comprised of Charlie Hunnam, Matthew McConaughey, Colin Farrell, Michelle Dockery, Hugh Grant and Henry Golding who all worked so well together thanks to that classic Guy Ritchie dialogue and humor injected into those intense scenes that really sets his films apart…

  • The Lodge

    The Lodge


    The Lodge is a thriller about a woman stranded in a cabin in the woods during a snowstorm with her boyfriend's two children when strange events occur and this movie has some twists and turns in the story that will definitely divide opinions but I enjoyed every moment of it.
    Riley Keough is great her as the girlfriend and is able to bring a complex performance to the role being vulnerable at times while also being terrifying in others making…

  • The Invisible Man

    The Invisible Man


    Blumhouse once again knocks a great low budget horror film of out the park and Elizabeth Moss gives one of her best performances to date. She gives such a layered performance showing both strength and vulnerability. There is also so much tension in this film thanks to the cast giving such great performances and such well shot cinematography especially noting that often the actors are working off nothing and make it look legit when they’re in fights with the invisible…

  • The Way Back

    The Way Back


    Gavin O'Connor once again proves he can make a great sports film ( as he did in 2004 with Miracle and 2011 with Warrior) that tells the story of a former basketball destined for greatness(played to near perfection by Ben Affleck) who now must fights his demons to coach a team to the championship.
    Affleck is so great in his role as he can emote strength and vulnerability sometimes in the same scene. He has such a layered character here…

  • Onward



    Onward was another great film for Pixar-despite it not quite being on par with some of the greats like Up, Incredibles etc- with such great animation, a charming story and a great cast (Tom Holland and Chris Pratt being so great in this working so well off each other) but what really got me was the theme throughout the entire film of brotherly love and how that relationship develops in the story is just pure magic.  
    The aspect of…

  • The Killing of a Sacred Deer

    The Killing of a Sacred Deer


    Following up on 2015's The Lobster, director Yorgos Lanthimos gives a film that is even more cerebral, even more cold in its execution and in its odd almost monotone line delivery from its stellar cast including once again Colin Ferrell and also Nicole Kidman, Alicia Silverstone and Billy Camp who all give excellent performances but the breakout performance here is Barry Keoghan as his physical presence here alone is chilling and his connection with the daughter played by Raffey Cassidy…

  • The Disaster Artist

    The Disaster Artist


    James Franco is almost unrecognizable as Tommy Wiseau, director, writer,producer and actor of the Room, one of the worst made films of all time and Franco turns in the best performance of his career in a film that is funny, captivating and heartfelt.
    Franco captures the nature of Tommy from his mannerism to his unique speech pattern and odd sensibilities. Dave Franco is also great as Greg Sistero and their brotherly bond help give the two great chemistry in their…

  • Darkest Hour

    Darkest Hour


    Darkest Hour is an Oscar contending vehicle for Gary Oldman who disappears into the role of Winston Churchill as he is appointed to Prime Minister Of England during the height of World War and puts him in the precarious situation of having to get all Britain's troops of the beaches of Dunkirk.
    This isn't an unknown story with Christopher Nolan's Dunkirk showing the human survival struggle from the beach and Brian Cox's Churchill also mining the same material. Oldman's ability…

  • Spider-Man: Homecoming

    Spider-Man: Homecoming


    Spiderman Homecoming is the joint effort of Marvel and Sony that comic book fans thought we'd never get with a Peter Parker(Tom Holland) that was great in his scenes in Captain America: Civil War in a film that works so well in rebooting the character(for a third time now) and it's done so well.
    Tom Holland is that young Spider-Man that Andrew Garfield couldn't pull off(just didn't give off that nerdy feel Peter Parker need to work) and Tobey Maguire…

  • Your Name.

    Your Name.


    The body swapping anime film by director Makoto Shinkai in his sophomoric endeavor. Your Name follows a boy and girl who swap bodies and discover about themselves, mortality and the human connection. The film starts off light by using the scenario for comedic effect before changing pace and turning the film into a thriller where they can both need to help each other achieve a goal. The intriguing part is to see not only how they adapt to the lives…

  • Kong: Skull Island

    Kong: Skull Island


    Kong Skull Island is yet another iteration of the classic King Kong storyline, but now as an introduction to the classic monster to a new monster universe. As in all other versions of Kong, a team of people find an unexplored island and encounter numerous beasts there with Kong being the centerpiece. However, unlike the 2005 version, the movie doesn't waste time getting to the island and giving us Kong early and often. Every time Kong is onscreen, he is…