Movie reviews
31 results total, viewing 1 - 20
‘Tis the season for movies that seem to exist solely as awards vehicles for their lead actors. Two years ago it was Renée Zellweger in “Judy.” Last year saw Carey Mulligan in … more
Editor’s note: Journalism professor Buck Ryan and English lecturer Lei Jiao — based in Wuhan, China — are back with their third film review for the CN+R as they seek the holy grail of … more
The problem with the movie plot twist as a narrative device is that it has become too ubiquitous. They have become so expected among certain genres, particularly mysteries and horror flicks, that … more
The oft-discussed paradox of the otherwise revered 1992 horror film “Candyman” is that its titular villain, an apparition born of slave-era white atrocity, exacted his bloody retribution … more
A Frankenstein’s neo-noir, “Reminiscence” is a mélange of mystery and sci-fi tableaux. Written and directed by “Westworld” co-creator Lisa Joy, the film is like “Chinatown” mashed up … more
“Respect” follows the music biopic playbook, starting with a film title that borrows its name from one of its subject’s well-known songs or lyrics, a la “Walk the Line,” “Get on Up,” … more
Airlifted in from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, writer-director James Gunn blends the zany irreverence of his “Guardians of the Galaxy” franchise with the bleak nihilism largely scrubbed … more
Blunt and Rock repartee not enough to carry off-course ‘Jungle Cruise’ In “Jungle Cruise,” Dwayne Johnson plays a wisecracking, muscle-bound mariner who teams … more
It is a heady concept, but like most of Shyamalan’s oeuvre, “Old’s” ambitions outstrip its execution. Saddled by wooden dialogue and stilted acting, the disposable characters range from uninteresting to annoying. Shyamalan’s camera work — a swirl of acute angles, out of focus, slow-motion, tracking shots, and everything in between — adds to the disquieting sensation of the film until it starts to feel excessive. more
Space Jam: A New Legacy Grade: D+ Director: Malcolm D. Lee Starring: LeBron James, Don Cheadle and Cedric Joe MPAA Rating: PG Running Time: 1 hr. 55 min. Early on in “Space Jam: A … more
Coming after a decade of developmental dithering, “Black Widow” literally feels like adding insult to injury. Not only does the long-discussed and delayed standalone come after the Marvel title … more
LUCA Grade: C + Director: Enrico Casarosa Starring the voices of: Jacob Tremblay, Jack Dylan Grazer, Emma Berman, Saverio Raimondo. Maya Rudolph, Jim Gaffigan and Marco Barricelli MPAA … more
“The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard” is the sort of lamebrained film in which the main character yells (without an ounce of irony), “If we don’t stop the drill, they’ll upload the virus and … more
“Army of the Dead” begins promisingly enough, with a cold open featuring a mysterious über-zombie escaping from and decimating a Area 51 military convoy, punctuated by it and two newly undead … more
Another post-pandemic film yawning to be graded on a curve, “Those Who Wish Me Dead” relies on two main attractions: seeing Angelina Jolie back in quasi-action mode, a role at which she is quite … more
WRATH OF MAN Grade: C Director: Guy Ritchie Starring: Jason Statham, Holt McCallany, Jeffrey Donovan, Josh Harnett, Eddie Marsan and Scott Eastwood MPAA Rating: R Running Time: 1 hr. … more
The 2021 Academy Awards will be presented this Sunday (8 p.m. on NBC; The last Oscars ceremony was 441 days ago, but it seems like a lifetime. The film industry is among the … more
“Godzilla vs. Kong” is essentially a remake of “Batman vs. Superman” if it was directed by Michael Bay. There is a Lex Luthor, a Doomsday laced with the DNA of a former foe, a … more
“Nobody” is the “RED” of “John Wicks.” Indeed, this middle-aged pastiche hews so closely to the Keanu Reeves resurrection vehicle that you periodically ponder whether it was meant as a … more
Like so many superhero origin stories, the 2017 “Justice League” was an orphan, left fatherless and later adopted by a foster parent who, while experienced in the role, mistreated his ward and … more
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