Reviews Of What Is In Theaters Now

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Rated: PG-13

Release Date: November 15, 2019

Director: James Mangold

Stars: Matt Damon, Christian Bale, Tracy Letts, Jon Bernthal

Plot: Two of the world's best car guys try to work within the confines of Ford to build a car fast enough to beat Ferrari at the 24 Hours of Le Mans



Clint Says: Wait for the digital release



You would think that a film about the fastest cars in the world would be fast-paced. Well, not in this case. FORD V. FERRARI clocks in at nearly 2 1/2 hours, and I am not exaggerating when I say that they could have easily cut 50 minutes out of it. The first 90 minutes was so slow. I was thoroughly bored.


Thankfully the last hour picked up the pace and gave us some excitement and entertainment. If it hadn't been for that this film would have been a complete disaster.


The acting is good, but nothing award-worthy. I'm sure Damon and Bale did spot-on jobs portraying their real-life characters, but the men themselves weren't that dynamic. Therefore the acting falls flat and doesn't do a good job of carrying the story. 


If you are a gear head or any type of car junkie then you'll probably enjoy a good portion of this movie. There is a lot of technical talk that will keep you entertained. If you aren't a fan of cars and/or racing this is not the movie for you. It will be a very long 2 1/2 hours.

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Rated: PG-13

Release Date: November 1, 2019

Director: Kasi Lemmons

Stars: Cynthia Erivo, Leslie Odom Jr., Joe Alwyn

Plot: The story of the skill and bravery of Harriet Tubman to escape slavery and then help hundreds of other slaves to freedom



Clint Says: Drop everything and go see this in theaters now



HARRIET has "Oscar contender" written all over it. From the screenplay, to the score, to the acting, and beyond, I can see this film getting six or seven nominations with ease. However, it is still very early in the awards season, and with some big, powerhouse films on the way, this one might not make the final cut. Even so, this is an amazing and powerful film worth seeing.


Cynthia Erivo gives a career-defining performance as Harriet Tubman. Her acting draws you in and makes you feel like you are right there with her. You feel the pain, anguish, joy, relief, and courage along with her.


This is not an easy movie to watch. There is a lot going on that is disturbing and uncomfortable, but that is what makes it such a powerful and moving film. I went to the screening of this movie with a black friend, and when it was over I could see that she was visibly moved by it all. She told me she loved it, but it was going to take her a few days to process all that she had just witnessed. I know that, since then, the film has stuck with me, and I'm sure the same is true for my friend.


If you are a fan of history this is a must-see film. But beyond that, this should be shown in Junior High History classes for the next 50 years. It is a film that needs to be seen. Harriet Tubman was a true hero, and this movie does a wonderful job in bringing her life and accomplishments to life more than 100 years after her death.


If you have teenage children. Take them to see this movie. You'll have plenty to talk about when it is over.

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Rated: PG-13

Release Date: September 27, 2019

Director: Rupert Goold

Stars: Renee Zellweger, Finn Wittrock

Plot: Judy Garland, in desperate need of money, travels to London to do a series of shows



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



I must admit, I was not as smitten by this film as everyone around me was. Don't get me wrong, I found the movie to be very well done with incredible acting by Renee Zellweger, but for some reason it didn't quite hit me emotionally like it did others. 


The story is a tragedy in every way. From her manipulated life as a teen that led to her issues as an adult, to her loss of her money, children, and her dignity. It is a sad and hopeless tale. There are only slight glimpses of comedy and happiness, but those are so fleeting that they can easily be missed.


Zellweger truly becomes Judy Garland on screen. Her performance is near perfection. I even had people telling me that they didn't realize it was Zellweger until well into the film. There will be a lot of competition for Best Actress this year, but I would be shocked if she is left out of the awards conversation. 


If you are a fan of Judy Garland you need to see this movie. If you are hoping for a lot of great singing moments including SOMEWHERE OVER THE RAINBOW, you will be disappointed. Yes, there are a couple, but they are more sad than triumphant. This is not an easy film to watch, but it is a film forth seeing. 

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Rated: PG

Release Date: September 20, 2019

Director: Michael Engler

Stars: Hugh Bonneville, Maggie Smith, Imelda Staunton, Matthew Goode

Plot: The Crawley family prepares for a royal visit to Downton Abbey



Clint Says: If you are a DOWNTON ABBEY fan this is a must-see movie



If you are a fan of the DOWNTON ABBEY television show stop reading now and just head to the theater. There is nothing that I can say that would stop you from seeing this movie, nor would I want to stop you. Go, henceforth, and may joyous tidings be unto you.


If you've never seen the show, but you are thinking about seeing the film, the good news is you won't be completely lost. Sure, there are a lot of inside things true fans will get that you won't, but you will understand who the characters are and what is happening throughout the story. 


DOWNTON ABBEY is aristocratic snobbery at its best, (or worst, depending on your preferential point of view). It's the perfect film to be enjoyed with a bunch of friends and a bunch of wine.


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Rated: R

Release Date: September 13, 2019

Director: Lorene Scafaria

Stars: Jennifer Lopez, Constance Wu, Julia Stiles, Keke Palmer

Plot: A group of high-paid strippers have to find a way to make a living after the stock market crash of 2008



Clint Says: Save some money and see a matinee



This is one of those films that could have been so great. It has a fascinating story, (based somewhat off of a true story), and great acting. Unfortunately, the editing and cinematography pull this movie back into the "average" category.


There has been a lot of Oscar talk for Jennifer Lopez as Best Supporting Actress. She is very good, but I don't see her making the cut for a nomination. She doesn't stand out like one would typically see from an Oscar nominee. And that is mainly because Constance Wu and the rest of the cast are all great in their own ways as well. This is one of the best acted movies of the year so far, unfortunately they didn't have a script worthy of their talents. 


The main issue with this film is that it doesn't get to the point until 50+ minutes into it. From that point on the movie is amazing. It's fast-paced and compelling. Unfortunately, the first 50 minutes wander around slowly and with very little purpose. All it does is establish who they are, what they do, and why they need to alter their lives post stock market crash. This could have been handled so much more effectively and been more entertaining if it had taken 20 minutes instead of almost an hour. 


It's also a poorly shot film. I'm sure a lot of filters were used while making this movie, but it made a lot of the scenes look out of focus. There were also a lot of weird camera movements that didn't make any sense with the action on the screen. 


This had the potential to be one of the better films of the year, unfortunately it is just going to fall into the pile of mostly forgettable films that couldn't quite get the formula correct. 

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Rated: R

Release Date: August 23, 2019

Director: Tyler Nilson, Mike Schwartz

Stars: Zack Gottsagen, Shia LaBeouf, Dakota Johnson

Plot: Two people running away from their past travel together to try to find the place where one of their dreams can come true



Clint Says: Drop everything and see this in theaters now



This film has a great chance to be the feel good movie of the year. It is so simple, but it is absolutely beautiful in its simplicity. I kept on catching myself with a big, stupid grin on my face as the story unfolded. And when it came to an end it left me wanting so much more. 


It's hard to believe that a movie about a couple of misfits in love with back-woods wrestling could make for one of the great films of the year, but it is true. This film is superb.


I'm not the biggest Shia LaBeouf fan, most of his work I find rather annoying, even though I appreciate the fact that he is always pushing the edge of acting into new and interesting places. However, he give a masterful performance in this film that is a joy to watch from beginning to end. 


LaBeouf is fantastic, but it is Zack Gottsagen who completely steals the show. His performance is so endearing, so real, and so raw that you feel like you are right there with him every step of the journey. His comedic timing and his sense of drama draw the audience in to the point where you can truly feel his joy and his pain. 


This is one of those films that will have you cheering hard for the heroes, laughing at the craziness, and crying through the heartache. It is a wonderful, powerful, and emotional film that should be on your list to see as soon as possible.

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Rated: PG

Release Date: August 9, 2019

Director: Simon Curtis

Stars: Kevin Costner, Milo Ventimiglia, Amanda Seyfried

Plot: A dog spends his life with a race car driver and his family



Clint Says: Wait for the digital release



First off, let's just get this one out of the way right away, Kevin Costner is a terrible voice actor. I spent the entire film picturing him standing in a recording booth reading lines over and over again, but always reading them the same way until the director finally just gave up and said, "we've got it." There are so many lines that feel awkward and out of place. 


Next, since the entire movie is narrated by the dog (Kevin Costner), it feels like I was watching someone read a bad book aloud. The whole time I was mentally screaming at the movie to stop telling me things and start showing me. Telling is boring and static, showing is exciting and dynamic. 


The other thing that is so strange about this movie is that it doesn't seem to know it's target. Is it a dog movie? Is it a romance? Is it a movie about racing? Is it a movie about living life together? The answer is yes to all of them. You can't have a good movie that tries to do all of the things at once. It won't please anyone.


Throw on top of that poor dialogue, mediocre acting, and boring cinematography and you have a pretty bland flick that isn't worth your time or effort. If you happen to run across it when it comes out digitally, you might give it a shot just to see if you like it, but don't be surprised if you turn it off before the halfway point. 

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Rated: PG

Release Date: August 2, 2019

Director: Lulu Wang

Stars: Awkwafina, Shuzhen Zhao, Diana Lin

Plot: A Chinese family gathers to say goodbye to their dying matriarch, but she doesn't know she is dying



Clint Says: Drop everything and go see this in theaters now



This is easily one of my favorite movies of the year. It is so touching, emotional, and so perfectly Chinese in every way. 


I have had the pleasure of spending a significant amount of time all over China and there are things there that you would never experience in the West. Watching this movie brought back all of those memories. 


Lulu Wang does an amazing job at directing this film. The pacing is perfect, the shots and sets are artistic and beautiful, and the story is told well. 


Awkwafina proves that she is one of Hollywood's finest actors with her award-worthy performance. You truly feel for her character and the struggle she is going through throughout the film. And seeing her finally make the choice that she feels is the right one is such a powerful and moving moment. 


The show-stealer though is Shuzhen Zhao who plays the matriarch of the family. She is so incredibly funny with her abrupt, no-nonsense talk. And her face lights up the room every time she is on screen. 


Even if you aren't a fan of foreign language films, you should give this one a shot. The story is told so well. It is funny, heartbreaking, beautiful, and wonderful. I would bet that this film makes a lot of people's Top 10 Films list this year. 

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Rated: R

Release Date: June 28, 2019

Director: Joe Talbot

Stars: Jimmie Fails, Jonathan Majors, Danny Glover

Plot: A young man tries to return to the heart of the city he loves, but it has pushed him out



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



Every once in a while a small-budget film comes along that has the ability to make a big splash. This might be that movie. While this isn't a mainstream style film, it is a beautiful and powerful snapshot of a city and its people. 


Jimmy Fails and Jonathan Majors are fantastic in their respective roles. Their portrayals are moving, heartbreaking, and inspiring. As the story unfolds we get the full essence of who they are, what they stand for, and where they want to go. 


The visual elements are stunning and relate perfectly to the tone and pace of the movie. There are several scenes that look like they were pulled right from a Broadway stage, while others look like they sneaked in a quick scene with just the actors, director, and his smart phone. 


My only issue with this movie is the continuity. There are several scenes where things are out of place from cut to cut. A perfect example being when several guys are trying to act tough on a street corner. As the scene cuts back and forth on guy is wearing a hood then he's not, then it's back, and so on. Simple things like that drive me crazy in film because they are so easily fixable. But if that is my only issue, then this is an outstanding film worthy of your time and money.

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Rated: PG-13

Release Date: May 10, 2019

Director: Dome Karukoski

Stars: Nicholas Hoult, Lily Collins

Plot: This film explores the younger years of the acclaimed fantasy author and how his experiences shaped his stories



Clint Says: Drop everything and go see this in theaters now



As a fan of the works of JRR Tolkien, I was intrigued by the premise of this film. I wanted to see the moments in his life that shaped his writings and especially the works we all know so well like THE HOBBIT and THE LORD OF THE RINGS.


Not only did I get what I wanted, but I got so much more. This movie is outstanding. It is a work of art unto its own. It almost feels like the second coming of DEAD POETS SOCIETY, which, to me, is one of the greatest films of the last 40 years.


The acting is near perfect, the cinematography is mesmerizing, the story is well-paced, and the imagery is intense, meaningful, and exciting to see. There are so many Easter eggs in this film for fans of The Hobbit and LOTR. You probably need to see it a couple of times to catch them all.


Nicolas Hoult and Lily Collins have beautiful chemistry, making the love story just as enjoyable as the story about his early life and friends.  They make this movie significantly better with their skills.


Unfortunately, for most fans of Tolkien's works, they will never even know this film exists. The marketing for this movie has been minimal at best, and that is a true disservice to a wonderful film. If you know someone who is a fan, please let them know that this movie is in theaters now. It deserves a good audience.

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Rated: PG-13

Release Date: May 3, 2019

Director: Deon Taylor

Stars: Dennis Quaid, Megan Good, Michael Ealy

Plot: A couple buys their dream home, but the former owner isn't ready to let the place go



Clint Says: Don't even bother



Very few times in my life have I rooted for the bad guy in a movie, but in this case I was cheering him on with full gusto. About 30 minutes into the film I realized that both of his victims were so colossally stupid that they deserved everything that was going to happen to them.


Here are just a couple of the, (slightly spoilery, but it really doesn't matter), stupid things they did: 1. They both are the worst cell phone users ever. 2. They never bother to call the cops. 3. The woman has zero sense when it comes to self-preservation. 4. The bad guy keeps coming to their house and  the guy victim sends his wife back home ALONE to spend the night ALONE. 5. Bad things keep happening at the house and zero cops show up.


And those are just a few of the eye-rolling moments...I left out all of the really bad ones. And there are plenty.


Oh, and to make matters worse, hardly anything exciting happens in the first hour. They had to throw in a fake action/dramatic scene to try and trick us into thinking the movie was actually going somewhere.


This movie is so bad that strangers were talking to each other as we left the theater commiserating with one another about how bad the flick was. I had one guy come up to me and say, "if that were my wife and she was that stupid, we would have had a come-to-Jesus way early in that movie." He's not wrong.


A tell-tale sign that a movie isn't great is when the studio releases one trailer, and puts it on the front of every possible movie for a good six months leading up to its release. Which is exactly what the studio did for this film. Going in, I knew there was a chance that it wasn't going to be good, but I went in with an open mind. Silly me. The actual movie ended up being even worse than I had imagined it could be.


This movie could have been so smart and scary. Instead it was thoroughly boring and stupid. Don't even bother with this one. It will just disappoint you.


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Rated: PG-13

Release Date: April 19, 2019

Director: Max Minghella

Stars: Elle Fanning, Zlatko Buric, Agnieszka Grochowska

Plot: A poor farm girl tries for fame and freedom by auditioning for a major singing competition



Clint Says: Save some money and see a matinee



While this isn't a bad film at all, it feels like it missed it's production window by about eight years. I know that singing competitions are still popular, but they are nothing now compared to a few years ago when they were just about the only thing people talked about when it came to TV.


Elle Fanning is incredible in this role. She pulls off a foreign accent, a foreign language, and she even sings all of the songs herself. For an actor to do any one of those things is pretty good, but to nail all three is exceptional.


The thing that bothered me most about this film is the tone. It's about a girl going to a massive singing competition, it should feel exciting and overwhelming, but instead the whole thing is toned down like we are on a morphine drip during our own birthday party.


I think this film could have been great if it was just a little more up and fast-paced. It is worth seeing just because of Fanning, but the story may leave you wanting more.


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Rated: PG

Release Date: April 17, 2019

Director: Roxann Dawson

Stars: Chrissy Metz, Topher Grace, Josh Lucas, Marcel Ruiz

Plot: A mother turns to God to help save her son after he suffers a tragic accident



Clint Says: Save some money and see a matinee



About five minutes into this movie I was done. I'm sure Chrissy Metz is a wonderful person, but her acting in this movie was so bad I could barely handle to watch any more of it. Thankfully, I endured the painful start and was treated to a very good...not


Fair warming to all of you that see this movie, bring a lot of tissues. You will be ugly crying at least three times and probably more. It is a highly emotional film that is willing to take you to the breaking point.


The story is told well, and the pacing is fine, but the only issue with the film is Metz. I was shocked at how bad her acting was. I've never seen THIS IS US, but I assumed she would be great since the show is such a hit. On the contrary, her acting would have been laughably bad had the subject matter of the film been less serious. That said, it's almost laughably bad anyway.


The rest of the cast does a fine job, and the emotional story is powerful and moving. This isn't a great film, but for a low budget movie they did a very fine job.


If you are ready to ugly cry, you may want to give this film a chance.

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Rated: R

Release Date: April 5, 2019

Director: James Kent

Stars: Keira Knightley, Jason Clarke, Alexander Skarsgard

Plot: A British woman and her soldier husband move into the house of a single German father during WWII. When her husband is called away on a mission she and her housemate form a relationship



Clint Says: Wait for the digital release and make someone else rent it



If you are looking to be fantastically bored for two straight hours, do I have the movie for you. One would think that a film about a steamy affair would be somewhat interesting, but alas, even the bad stuff is awkward and dull.


Jason Clarke all but kills the movie. His acting is incredibly monotonous. And Keira Knightley, who is usually very good, must have spent too much time hanging out with Clarke during the filming, because her acting is just as flat as his.


The story takes forever to get going, and by the time it does you are beyond the point of caring what happens to any of them.


There is one could-be interesting plotline, but it is handled so poorly that all of the emotion is taken out of it. It isn't until three minutes to go that anything of emotive significance happens. And after that the movie completely falls off of the rails.


The other horrible aspect of this movie is that the entire drama revolves around a 30 second conversation that never happened, but if it did it would have solved everything. Forced, manipulative drama does not make for a good film. You need real drama, high stakes, and sacrificial decisions for it to be effective and powerful. This film has none of the above.


Don't waste your time with this one. Unless you are truly in need of a good nap.

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Rated: R

Release Date: March 15, 2019

Director: Sebastian Lelio

Stars: Julianne Moore, John Turturro, Michael Cera, Rita Wilson

Plot: A middle-aged woman goes through a mild mid-life crisis while trying to find out what is important to her



Clint Says: Don't even bother



This is one of those films where I swear I saw a different movie than almost all of the other critics. Apparently, they saw something fantastic.


I saw a movie that is slow, the main character is just as boring as every one of us in our normal day-to-day lives, the conflict is childish, and the arc of the hero is minimal at best.


Essentially it is a story of old, white people dancing like old, white people and doing old, white people things. Then the main character has some form of a mild mid-life crisis in which she tries to party a couple of times like she was in college, have sex like in high school, and goes through relationship drama the way we did when we were in junior high.


The big, life-altering moment for the main character is really quite mundane. It also feels like the whole story was written to get to that one point in the story. It's 90 minutes of normalish, boring life leading up to 2 minutes of what an old person would think is exciting. It's a lot more annoying than it is empowering. The whole time I was watching this I wanted to yell at the main character, "Do something exciting"! I also wanted to act like a relationship counselor and tell everyone to grow up. 


If you are interested in seeing this movie, there is absolutely zero reason for spending the money to see it on the big screen. Watching it on your computer curled up in your bed will be just fine. That is also just about as exciting as the plot of the movie.

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Rated: R

Release Date: March 15, 2019

Director: Gaspar Noe

Stars: Sofia Boutella, Kiddy Smile

Plot: A dance troupe parties after a rehearsal, but chaos breaks out when it it discovered that the sangria is laced with LSD.



Clint Says: Wait for the digital release and make someone else rent it



This is the kind of movie that is made for people that like strange movies. If you are the kind of person who sees three or four movies a year then this is a film you should skip.


For those of you that like the weird, odd, and totally insane flicks that hit theaters, this one takes crazy to an insane new level. Imagine your prom afterparty turning into a murderous, psychotic horror fest. That is exactly what you get with CLIMAX.


The film is directed in a way that makes you feel like you are tripping on acid along with the characters. There are scenes that go on way too long where you find yourself begging to get away, but you can't. The whole movie is set to an overly loud and driving techno beat that bores into your head. There are scenes shot in ways that are not naturally appealing so your brain works overtime to try to reconcile what it is seeing, but with no luck. By the time the film ends you, like all of the other characters are mentally, and in some ways, physically exhausted.


There is no way in could ever recommend this film to 98% of the people I know or that read my reviews. It's just too much, and also not enough when it comes to plot, to keep the average movie-goer engaged or entertained. Must people will be completely turned off by this work in less than 15 minutes.


For the 2% that crave the insanely weird, CLIMAX will give you what you want, but it may give you more than you bargained for.


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Rated: R

Release Date: January 25, 2019

Director: Steven Knight

Stars: Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jason Clarke

Plot: A man is asked to kill his ex-wife's new husband, but everyone in the small town seems to know what is going on



Clint Says: Wait for the digital release



This is one of those okay movies that is on the verge of being great in some ways, but also on the verge of being a complete train wreck. It has several interesting moments, but it also has several, "what the heck am I watching?" moments as well.


The twist is interesting. Some people will love it, more will roll their eyes at it. The problem is that it is revealed way too early. There could have been a really cool setup for a huge twist at the end, but instead it just sort of leaks out about halfway through the story. 


The pacing and acting are fairly slow and stilted, but that has something to do with the greater story, so it is forgivable. Although, before you get to the twist it can become pretty annoying. 


I wish this film could have been something great, instead it just unfolds and then we all go home. There is a scene near the end that should be emotional and powerful, but by the time it gets there, we are so ingrained in the mundane that it doesn't even blip on the emotion detector.


There are so many movies these actors have done that are significantly better than this one. See one of those instead. You'll feel better.


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Rated: R

Release Date: January 4, 2019

Director: Barry Jenkins

Stars: KiKi Layne, Stephan James, Regina King, Colman Domingo

Plot: A young couple in love try to make a life for themselves while going through pregnancy and being accused of a crime he didn't commit



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



Director Barry Jenkins has proven once again that he can make outstanding, award-worthy films that are also accessible to the average movie-goer. His films are beautiful, important, and timely, but they never feel overdone, or pretentious, or self-congratulating.


This film is an emotional ride all the way through. There are moments where you feel first love, there are moments where you feel things that you want to go away. It's a captivating film with scenes where you wish you could turn away, but it is so good you can't.


The acting is easily some of the best of the year. Regina King is getting a lot of awards buzz, but KiKi Layne's performance is just as moving and powerful. I'm surprised she isn't getting more awards attention.


This is a slow-moving story, but it never feels like it gets too slow. The pacing is perfect. It gives just enough time to sit in each scene and really take in all of the beauty and meaning. This is a master class in dramatic film.

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Rated: PG-13

Release Date: December 21, 2018

Director: Robert Zemeckis

Stars: Steve Carell, Leslie Mann, Janelle Monae

Plot: An artist uses dolls and an elaborate set to cope with life after he is horribly beaten and left for dead



Clint Says: Wait for the digital release and make someone else rent it



This story has so much potential. It is a fascinating and powerful true story, unfortunately the film does a horrible job of making it come to life in a way that isn't awkward and just plain weird. 


The worst part of this film is that it actually gets really good for the last 15 minutes. Unfortunately, there are 90 minutes of a really bad movie before you get there. It's not worth the wait. 


Steve Carell does a good job with the roles he plays. He's proven that he can be a great dramatic actor as well as a comedian. It's too bad that this movie doesn't showcase his talents better. 


The other issue with the film is that every scene feels like the timing is off. The dialogue comes too slow, the cues are mistimed, and the transitions are awkward.


The best way I can describe watching this movie is to use the movie itself. Imagine how awkward you would feel if you were an adult playing with dolls in your front yard while other people watched. There you go. That's what it feels like to watch WELCOME TO MARWEN.

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Rated: R

Release Date: December 14, 2018

Director: Clint Eastwood

Stars: Clint Eastwood, Bradley Cooper, Michael Pena, Laurence Fishburne

Plot: An old man in need of a quick buck finds himself running drugs for a large cartel



Clint Says: Save some money and see a matinee



This has been rumored to be Clint Eastwood's final film. If that is the case, it is a wonderful, artistic, piece of cinema that is worthy of his long legacy. 


This isn't the kind of film that is overly exciting or thrilling, but it is an interesting story about family and generational differences. Overall, it is a well done film that completes everything it sets out to accomplish. 


The only downside to the movie is that it has one massive plot hole that should have been addressed early on in the making of the movie. I even heard two different people asking why as we walked out of the theater. In a nutshell, without spoiling the movie, there is zero reason why the main character would continue driving the same vehicle after he finds out certain things. It is a major knock against the movie. 


This isn't the kind of film that will be winning any awards, nor will it be one that will be on any "Top Ten Clint Eastwood Films" lists, but it is a solid film that is worthy of being seen, especially if you are a fan of Eastwood.