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  • Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas

    Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas

    ★★★★

    Creative consultants: Ted Elliot and Terry Rossio. Yeah, that's about right.

  • Beowulf

    Beowulf

    ★★★★

    I just don't think the English-speaking world was prepared in 2007 for an immaculately-produced, action-schlock comedy in this vein. The "serious outside, ridiculous inside" aesthetic works wonders for Japanese comedy (the 'Metal Gear' and 'Yakuza' video game series being prime examples) and I can't help but wonder, if Beowulf had also been produced in Japanese or another language other than English, whether more people might have gotten the joke.

    Edit: see 'Army of Darkness' for a more obviously comedic take (and even that wasn't a huge hit either).

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  • Mission: Impossible - Fallout

    Mission: Impossible - Fallout

    ★★★★½

    A worthy successor to Rogue Nation and 2018's downright champion so far.

  • Ready Player One

    Ready Player One

    ★★★½

    Spielberg has crafted a marvelous five-star cyberpunk adventure that's trapped inside an elaborate, two-star, copyright-trampling fan mural.

    'Ready Player One' has so much in engaging symbolism and imaginative sci-fi hooks--plus the director's straight up talent for entertaining cinema--but it misses out on creating the one-of-a-kind universe of a 'Minority Report' or 'Jurassic Park' by instead filling out its edges with the sort of "reference-porn" we were worried about 'The LEGO Movie' turning into.

    I'll have to see this one multiple times to truly settle on a star rating, but for now ...
    ... 'Snow Crash' did it better.