Reviews Of What Is In Theaters Now

Posted by on in Movie Reviews

FANTASY ISLAND

Rated: PG-13

Release Date: February 14, 2020

Director: Jeff Wadlow

Stars: Lucy Hale, Maggie Q, Michael Pena, Ryan Hansen

Plot: Several people arrive on a mysterious island to live out a fantasy, but their fantasies don't always turn out the way they want

Trailer

 

Clint Says: Save some money and see a matinee

 

 

When I first saw the trailer for this movie I was excited to see a reboot of one of the most nostalgic TV shows ever. Then I saw how it twisted the tale into a horror flick and I was even more excited.

 

The great news is that, even as excited as I was to see this movie, I didn't walk out disappointed. Horror films rarely live up to the hype or to the excitement of the trailer. This one does. It's filled with fun moments, a compelling story, and several great twists. 

 

The only downside is that there is very little horror in this film. The scares and chills are few, but at least the writer and director didn't try to fill it up with silly nonsense just to get a few more jump scares into the mix. They let the story breathe, and in doing so, gave us a fun, and somewhat terrifying film that will make you stick to your soft, Corinthian Leather movie seats. (That's a joke from the 1970's...if you don't get it, ask your parents).

 

There isn't a lot about this movie that is noteworthy. It's not a great horror flick, it doesn't have amazing acting, nor does it dazzle the senses with its style, however it is just good enough to make it worth seeing if you are a fan of the horror genre.

 

For those of you old enough to remember the television series, there are several call-backs and Easter eggs that will keep you entertained throughout the film. 

 

This isn't a movie that is going to win a ton of awards, but it is one that is worth a night out with friends. So, take a trip to Fantasy Island, you might enjoy your stay.

Posted by on in Movie Reviews

SONIC THE HEDGEHOG

Rated: PG

Release Date: February 14, 2020

Director: Jeff Fowler

Stars: James Marsden, Jim Carrey, Ben Schwartz, Tika Sumpter

Plot: A hedgehog with superpowers is on the run from people that want to use him for his powers

Trailer

 

Clint Says: Save some money and see a matinee

 

 

If you are a child of the 80's and 90's then Sonic The Hedgehog is a major character in your upbringing. That said, there were a lot of feelings about this movie long before its release date. Especially when the first trailer came out and the entire world revolted at the look of Sonic, forcing the director to make a public statement saying Sonic would be changed to look more like the original Sonic before the theatrical release. They did, and he does. 

 

As for the film, it is fun. It's not some great, comedic masterpiece, but it has several good laughs, a decently compelling plot, and it moves along at a quick and steady pace. I was in a theater full of kids and very few lost interest along the way. 

 

As with just about every film he's been in, Jim Carrey overacts every single line of his performance. It's funny, but it does get a bit old and tired by the end. Thankfully, the rest of the cast keeps the film on track. 

 

If you are looking for a fun outing with the family, this movie will satisfy. Kids and adults will be entertained. For the adults, it won't give you the nostalgia that you might be hoping for, but it's still entertaining enough.

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THE PHOTOGRAPH

Rated: PG-13

Release Date: February 14, 2020

Director: Stella Meghie

Stars: LaKeith Stanfield, Issa Rae, Lil Rey Howery, Chante Adams

Plot: A reporter falls for a woman while interviewing her for a feature about her mother

Trailer

 

Clint Says: Wait for the digital release

 

 

What do you get when you put two amazing actors in the lead roles of a film with a terrible script? You get two incredible performances in a bad movie. 

 

There are a lot of people that should apologize to LaKeith Stanfield and Issa Rae for wasting their talent in a film like THE PHOTOGRAPH.

 

First of all, the title isn't even right. It should have been called The Photographer, or Miss Mae, or The Letter, or a thousand other ideas that would have been more fitting.

 

Second, this is one of those strange films where there is so much going on, but nothing ever happens. It feels like there is a hurricane blowing, but the plot is only affected by a slight sea breeze. In the distance we can just make out the chaos and conflict, but it never really gets close enough to the main characters to force them into uncomfortable situations.

 

The story follows the love story formula completely. There are no deviations from it. It's essentially a "find and replace" movie with the settings and characters changed out, but everything else is like it always is in mediocre tales of love.

 

This is a slow-moving mashup of too many stories that doesn't give you enough time or information to care about any of the characters except for the leads. Thankfully, Stanfield and Rae are great enough to make this movie at least tolerable. They act well together and they have great on-screen chemistry. Without them, I fear it would be nearly unwatchable. 

 

Aside from the great acting, the only other positive of note is the music. Basically, it feels like you are listening to Saturday Night Slow Jams for almost two hours. That's never a bad time.

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BIRDS OF PREY

Rated: R

Release Date: February 7, 2020

Director: Cathy Yan

Stars: Margot Robbie, Rosie Perez, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Ewan McGregor

Plot: Harley Quinn does whatever it takes to stay alive after breaking up with The Joker.

Trailer

 

Clint Says: Wait until after opening weekend, but see this in theaters

 

 

Just like Harley Quinn, this movie is a hot mess...but in a good way. Nay. In a great way.

 

It is a film filled with crazy action, hilarious one-liners, fun music, and an interesting story. That said, the plot is a bit lacking. There are a couple of minor plot holes, moments of convenience, and events that are downright ridiculous, but sometimes, that is what makes a comic book flick work. As long s you are willing to suspend your disbelief, you will enjoy this film. 

 

Margot Robbie is so much fun in the lead role, and her partners in crime bring a lot to the movie. Mary Elizabeth Winstead is hilarious in the most serious way possible. And Ewan McGregor is spot on as a perfectly psychotic criminal mastermind. 

 

One of the great aspects of this movie is that there are so many things happening on the screen. The movie is filled with fun graphics, and animations. It keeps the movie moving fast, even during the slower parts. 

 

If you are a fan of comic book movies, this one is a must-see. It's unique in that it is a lot like an origin story, but it is really a story of Harley becoming her own person for the first time in her life. 

 

NOTE: Make sure to stay until the end of the credits. If you do, you will be treated to a moment that is as Harley Quinn as Harley Quinn can get.

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GRETEL AND HANSEL

Rated: PG-13

Release Date: January 31, 2020

Director: Osgood Perkins

Stars: Sophia Lillis, Samuel Leakey, Alice Krige

Plot: Two children, lost in the woods, come upon a darkness that is bent on destroying them

Trailer

 

Clint Says: Save some money and see a matinee

 

 

 

Most of us have heard the story of Hansel and Gretel. And now it gets a Hollywood treatment worthy of the terrifying essence of the tale. Sure, we would laugh about the witch getting the kids fat, and the way they outsmart her, but the reality is, the story is horrific.

 

While this film isn't your typical horror flick, it is better than most. It's a slow burn that builds well, and leads us to an original and twisted end. The movie is significantly more creepy than is it scary. Yes, it has a few moments that will make you jump, but for the most part it's all about making your skin crawl. 

 

It is a strikingly beautiful film. Every scene is built with impressive imagery and purpose. There is a symmetrical look to the film that is satisfying, but also unsettling. Each scene makes you feel like you should enjoy what you are seeing, yet there is a sense of foreboding that is continuously present.

 

The acting is superb, especially for the horror genre. Sophia Lillis, (IT and NANCY DREW), is fantastic in the lead role. She carries the story like a seasoned professional even though she is still in her teens. The rest of the cast do fine jobs in keeping the story moving forward. 

 

If you are a fan of dark fairy tales, this film is worth your time and money.