The Adam Project

(**) He didn’t come back from the dead. He came from another time and place. 2050. Back to see his younger self in what’s called a “parallel contact.”  That’s the foundation for this generic act/adv/com/sci-fi/fan. It starts with a good idea, then works the very primal emotions of a family in distress and an adult […]

Great Freedom

(***) Sometimes a modicum of dialogue works best. That’s seems to be a basic strategy for Austrian writer/director Sebastian Meise and co-writer Thomas Reider. Show first. Tell second.  The two filmmakers created this perceptive ode to the downtrodden with special care. They set up the premise: persecution of gays post WWII. Picked a worthy protagonist: […]

The Batman

(***1/2) Crime is rampant in Gotham City. Murders. Manslaughter. Blood soaks the streets. Citizens live in terror and the police are stumped. On desperate nights a Batman signal lights up the sky and the caped man jumps into action, but even he can’t stem the tide: “It’s a big city. I can’t be everywhere.”  The […]

Marry Me

Nothing is drastically wrong with this rom/com. Nothing is drastically right. That’s the problem. This Valentine’s Day offering feels like a present that’s been regifted and passed along.  Jennifer Lopez took big chances in her last movie Hustlers. She played a streetwise stripper and that paid off, winning her accolades for that unlikely role and very gritty […]

Great Films Abound at 2022 Sundance Film Festival

Feature films and documentaries entertained and enlightened audiences at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. The non-fiction films were as compelling as the crime thrillers, family dramas and adolescent romances. Nearly all left a lasting impression.  Cha Cha Real Smooth (***1/2)Twenty-three-year-old writer/actor/director Cooper Raiff knows how to capture the attention of rom/com audiences. Andrew’s (Raiff) life is […]

Moonfall

(**) The title spills the beans. In this sci-fi yarn, the filmmakers weren’t happy enough with a natural disaster: the moon hurtling towards earth. They had to add an outrageous AI storyline that makes what could have been a worthy, mildly plausible, catastrophic and action-filled movie a joke.  The idea for this lunar drama is […]

Black Actors Crown the 2022 Sundance Film Festival 

Black actors and actresses stepped into the spotlight at the 2022 Sundance Film Festival. Some shined in lead roles and others stole scenes as supporting actors in amazing dramas, comedies and thrillers. Case in point… 892 (***) Denzel Washington has several heirs apparent, and judging by John Boyega’s very edgy, disturbing performance in this drama […]

Black Films Thrive at Sundance Film Festival 2022

At the last minute, due to Omicron concerns, the 2022 Sundance Film Festival morphed from an in-person and virtual event to a purely digital experience. Thanks to streaming, Black filmmakers and Black films were on center stage all over the world. Check them out… Aftershock (***)According to WHO, the U.S. ranks 60th on the list of […]

The Tragedy of Macbeth

(****) The Tragedy of Macbeth was theatrically released nationwide in 2021 and is now streaming on AppleTV+. Watch this work of art on a TV screen and you’ll likely agree that last year’s “Best Film” is this year’s masterpiece.  Joel Coen (O, Brother, Where Art Thou) has created a magnus opus that sets a high bar […]

The 355

(**1/2) Need a break from COVID mania and winter melancholia? A dose of pure escapism may help. For 122 minutes this often generic but surprisingly engaging espionage action/thriller may take your mind off your troubles.  You’ll suspend belief for James Bond and all his improbable stunts. You’re perfectly OK with Shang-Chi fighting a dozen men […]