Charlotte is decent but could have been more.

An account of German-Jewish artist Charlotte Salomon living in the south of France between 1941 and 1943.

Charlotte definitely has the right ingredients to b a really strong movie, there’s just many parts about it that hold it back from doing so. The voice acting is quite great particularly Keira Knightly who really tries the best she can with the script she’s given, the story itself is interesting and tells the true story of German-Jewish artist Charlotte Salomon during World War II. The film itself is quite dark particularly the ending which is very sad and is very effective, there’s footage at the end of a small interview of Salomon’s parents it’s incredibly touching and quite powerful as well. The problems with the movie are the script being way too weak and the animation, the animation isn’t something I would call terrible. But it really doesn’t capture the life of Charlotte Salomon and what she was going through very well, the script lacked powerful moments which is something a film like this needs. There’s the ending yes but a lot of the movie’s script was very undercooked and was very rushed as well. Charlotte isn’t a bad movie just one that could have went a lot deeper than it did.

Charlotte is available on all VOD Platforms.

6/10 C+

Rise Of The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Movie is a fun addition to the TMNT series.

The Turtles are put to the test when a mysterious stranger named Casey Jones arrives from the future to warn the mutant brothers of an impending invasion·of the most dangerous alien force in the galaxy the Krang.

Not going to spend too long talking about this one simply because I haven’t seen the series it’s based on which is Rise Of The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, it’s one of the many incarnations the TMNT franchise has had (side note I grew up with the 2003 version). I knew of this version but knew very little about it, for what the movie is it’s pretty fun and genuinely charming as well. It definitely has a bit more humor than some of the other incarnations but it’s not enough to take out of the movie, there’s some genuinely good bits between the turtles and how they care about each other plus their brotherhood. The animation is actually very well done, it takes time to get use to especially if you haven’t seen the series before but there’s a lot of attention to detail here that brings the movie itself together quite well. Krang as the villain was quite great it’s refreshing to see another TMNT movie that doesn’t have The Shredder as the main villain for a change (as much as I like him). The action scenes are very well done and the build up to the final battle is quite great and surprisingly touching as well, the final act is very satisfying as well. There’s a ton of action combined with some character moments that wrap up the film very nicely, overall Rise Of The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is a very solid movie, even if you aren’t a fan on the incarnation of the show it’s based on I still recommend checking it out especially if you are a TMNT fan.

Rise Of The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Movie is available on Netflix.

7/10 B

Luck runs out of luck.

The story of Sam Greenfield, the unluckiest person in the world. Suddenly finding herself in the never-before-seen Land of Luck, she must unite with the magical creatures there to turn her luck around.

Luck is one of those unfortunate cases where the movie has a really interesting premise going on it’s just the presentation and writing that completely holds it back. The movie has a lot of Pixar inspirations (mainly due to John Lasseter being one of the producers) what the movie does get right is the voice cast and some of the animation is charming as well. It might not be anything extra special but there are some charming bits about it, keyword being some because the animation at times felt like it needed a bit of extra time to complete which is a bit baffling to see. The writing starts to fall apart quite quickly a lot of the movie is spent on a very uninteresting fetch quest that every once and awhile has a few nice moments between the main characters Sam (Eva Noblezada) and Bob (Simon Pegg) the rest of the movie attempts to try some world building completely forgets to make it compelling or interesting. The Land Of Luck comes off as just another world with a few beautiful and charming shots of animation to it, the writing unfortunately doesn’t go much deeper than “this is the land of luck where bad luck can’t enter otherwise it will be ruined” it’s a shame because there’s potential for really great idea’s here but it’s very clear this movie needed a rewrite as it felt very incomplete.

Luck is available on Apple TV+

4/10 D+

Minions: Rise Of Gru is surprisingly entertaining!

In the 1970s, young Gru tries to join a group of supervillains called the Vicious 6 after they oust their leader — the legendary fighter Wild Knuckles. When the interview turns disastrous, Gru and his Minions go on the run with the Vicious 6 hot on their tails. Luckily, he finds an unlikely source for guidance. Wild Knuckles himself and soon discovers that even bad guys need a little help from their friends.

If you told me back when Minions: Rise Of Gru was announced that I would end up liking this movie, I would look at you like you have five heads. But as I’ve said multiple times in the past I like surprises and Minions: Rise Of Gru definitely surprised me, the first Minions I did not like at the slightest outside of the soundtrack it was a prime example of illumination just wanting to sell merchandise with no soul in the movie. This one however while it does have a paper thin plot at times, there’s actually a lot more care put into trying to tell a story and make the characters actually have personalities. Sure the characters aren’t great but at least there’s something being told here, what keeps the movie afloat is that it’s entertaining there’s a number of memorable scenes that take full advantage of the soundtrack (which has no business being this good) to create some genuinely fun moments. The movie also doesn’t overstay it’s welcome either, the pacing is fast and the film itself is quite energetic as well. The animation is quite great with a lot of attention to detail and there’s some genuinely funny moments as well, not every joke lands but there’s a lot more comedic timing this time around. Overall Minions: Rise Of Gru isn’t anything groundbreaking but it is a genuinely fun film that’s great for kids and adults.

Minions: Rise Of Gru is available on all VOD Platforms.

7/10 B

Paws Of Fury: The Legend Of Hank is a dull attempt at being Blazing Saddles for kids.

A down-on-his-luck hound finds himself in a town full of cats who need a hero to defend them from a ruthless villain’s evil plot to wipe their village off the map. With help from a reluctant trainer, the underdog must assume the role of fearsome samurai and team up with the felines to save the day. The only problem is they all hate dogs.

This is one of these scenarios where the production history of a movie is far more interesting than the movie itself. Because when you get down to it Paws Of Fury: The Legend Of Hank is basically Blazing Saddles for kids and with cats and dogs, to sum up the history of this movie it was originally supposed to release all the way back in April 14th 2017. The major reason why it was delayed so many times was changes in the distributors, Nickelodeon Movies was eventually the one who released it and here we are today. The movie itself as I said before is basically Blazing Saddles, the only thing that makes this movie at least tolerable is the cast Samuel L. Jackson is decent despite some really bad jokes he’s given, Ricky Gervais as the villain is actually not terrible, Michelle Yeoh is also fine enough (although she doesn’t get a whole lot to do) and Mel Brooks is always nice to see as well. Everything else falls under the “typical bad animated movie” category, very outdated jokes (there’s a Gangnam Style joke in here) and animation that really gives the vibe of $5 Walmart bin. There’s also some fourth wall breaking jokes that are just not funny there’s even one where one character talks about the running time, overall Paws Of Fury: The Legend Of Hank is terrible and just does not have a whole lot to it.

Paws Of Fury: The Legend Of Hank is available on all VOD Platforms.

3/10 D-

LEGO Star Wars Summer Vacation is not a trip worth going on.

Looking for a much-needed break, Finn arranges a surprise vacation for his friends Rey, Poe, Rose, Chewie, BB-8, R2-D2, and C-3PO, aboard the luxurious Halcyon. However, Finn’s plan to have one last hurrah together quickly goes awry.

LEGO Star Wars Summer Vacation is the third of these Lego Star Wars specials and is probably the weakest, I say probably because quite honestly there is a very little difference between this one and the last one “Terrifying Tales”. Although if I had to say which is the weakest I would go with Summer Vacation. Mainly due to the movie being more less the same thing, it reuses a lot of the same Star Wars memes that were in the last two specials and there isn’t anything really memorable here. Outside of Obi-Wan in a Hawaiian shirt and Weird Al Yankovic making an appearance. As I said about Terrifying Tales this is harmless enough for kids and is an okay distraction for 45 minutes, but that’s all it really amounts to. It’s not particularly funny either mainly due to reusing a lot of the same Star Wars memes you have probably seen on the internet 40 times.

Lego Star Wars Summer Vacation is available on Disney+

4/10 D+

Green Lantern: Beware My Power is a weak entry in the Tomorrowverse

When a Power Ring is bestowed upon former Marine John Stewart, it leads him on a life-changing mission. With Justice League member Green Arrow and Thanagarian Hawkgirl by his side, Stewart is thrown into a complicated galactic war.

Green Lantern: Beware My Power is the newest installment of the new DC Animated Universe the Tomorrowverse. The DC Animated Movie Universe finished with Justice League Dark: Apokolips War in 2020 (a pretty solid ending) the Tomorrowverse began with Superman: Man Of War a few months later in August 2020 so far there’s been 5 films…Superman: Man Of War, Justice Society World War II, Batman The Long Halloween Parts 1 and 2 and finally Green Lantern: Beware My Power.

Green Lantern: Beware My Power I was a bit interested in mainly due to John Stewart’s version of The Green Lantern who was one of my favorite characters from The Justice League TV series back from 2004. The movie serves as an origin story for the character but unfortunately the writing really hurts this movie. The movie starts out fine enough, it does a decent job of introducing Green Arrow, Hawk Girl and a few others and there’s even some decent action scenes as well. The animation is also pretty solid with a few scenes in particular that are actually pretty well done, the main problem is despite the movie being about John Stewart that gets lost during the midpoint of the movie, he ends up being in the middle of all these other characters and their problems. The focus suddenly switches to them rather than Stewart and just leaves any fan of John Stewart’s Green Lantern very disappointed, the voice acting is at least decent giving each of the characters their own personality. The plot however is very Saturday morning cartoonish outside of a few scenes it really doesn’t dive deep into the characters and is very very surface level. Unless you know these characters you aren’t going to get a whole lot of information about them here. Overall it’s not a terrible movie but it is a pretty disappointing one, that had the writing been a lot better could have made for something interesting.

Green Lantern Beware My Power is available on all VOD Platforms.

5/10 C+

The Sea Beast is a fantastic smooth sailing adventure.

The life of a legendary sea monster hunter is turned upside down when a young girl stows away on his ship.

The Sea Beast is directed by Chris Williams who partly directed Big Hero 6 and Bolt, Netflix animated films have a huge tendency to go in a lot of different ways much more of the time not very good. While The Sea Beast is pretty much a How To Train Your Dragon clone it still manages to create a beautiful picture and makes some of the elements it’s own, for starters the animation is bright, colorful and very well detailed it adds a lot to the characters world and really makes the sea itself huge. The characters surprisingly get a lot of development, there’s some really interesting dialogue that points to a lot of interesting themes that are used. The scale of the movie completely matches the concept of sea monsters, pirates and the sea itself, it’s a huge world with so much to look at on screen. The film makes the viewer’s eyes go on an adventure which is something that I wish a lot of other films could do, the voice acting from the cast mainly Karl Urban, Zaris-Angel Hator, Jarred Harris and Marianne Jean-Baptiste is truly fantastic and really dives deep into their respective characters. Overall The Sea Beast is definitely a film that is going to be overlooked, so highly recommend checking this one out!!

The Sea Beast is available on Netflix.

8/10 B+

Beavis and Butt-Head do the Universe brings back the duo to the modern age wonderfully!

Blasting off on a NASA space mission in 1998, mischievous best pals Beavis and Butt-head time travel to the year 2022. As the NSA and U.S. government try to track them down, the clueless teens do their best to adjust to modern life.

If you are going to bring back certain characters such as Beavis and Butt-Head into the modern setting this is absolutely the way to do it. Beavis and Butt-Head Do The Universe is exactly what you would expect and in a good way, the humor, style and feel of the series is still here in all of it’s glory. The movie focuses on certain types of humor such as some Sci-Fi humor and politic humor however it doesn’t take away from the humor we all expect from Beavis and Butt-Head. It’s such a creative and strong balance one doesn’t feel like it’s being completely shoved aside, the film also understands what made the series so great and in fact makes that known in the film, with tons of clever humor while making sure the characters just as enjoyable as they were In the series. Beavis and Butt-Head do the universe is such a treat and an absolute blast, definitely check this one out!!

Beavis And Butt-Head Do The Universe is available on Paramount+

8/10 B+

Mad God is an acid trip from hell and it’s brilliant.

A figure known as “The Assasin” as descends from the heavens into a nightmarish pit full of monsters, titans and cruelty.

Mad God is Phill Tippett’s passion project that he’s wanted to make for years, Tippett has done a ton of visual effects work for countless recognizable films such as A New Hope, Empire Strikes Back, The Robocop movies, Jurassic Park, Starship Troopers, Indiana Jones and The Temple Of Doom, the Twilight movies (New Moon and above) and much more. The wait for his film was absolutely worth it, Mad God an almost narrativeless film that has the motions of the characters, actions and visuals do all the talking. The best way to describe Mad God is that it’s a beautifully crafted nightmare that also feels like an acid trip from hell, it’s a very gnarly film that has beautiful animation that is used in such a unique way. If I had to guess of a theme or a narrative this film is going for it’s how civilizations can easily crumble, inventions made by the civilians are used against them by their god. There’s also this huge picture which depicts what a living hell would actually look like in the worst ways possible. The stop-motion animation combined with it’s themes and atmosphere truly make this a one of a kind experience, it’s a terrifying one that quickly gets under your skin but is all the more worth it. Go into this one knowing as little as possible!

Mad God is available on Shudder!

10/10 A+