Family Camp is about as fun as summer school.

Two polar-opposite families find themselves sharing a cabin for a week away at camp. With the highly coveted camp trophy at stake, dads Tommy and Eddie end up lost in the woods.

Family Camp is one of those movies where it released and nobody talked about it at all, it’s like it didn’t exist and I can easily see why. I’ll give it this…it’s not the God’s Not Dead type of Christian movie, but that’s honestly not saying much when you look at the quality of the movie. The best thing about this mess is Leigh-Allyn Baker who gives a fine enough performance but isn’t enough to make the viewer look past everything else, the writing is truly awful there isn’t one moment here that feels sincere or meaningful. A lot of it is if you took every bad cliche from the early 2000s family movie era, mixed it all together and this is what you would get. One of the worst things a movie can be is annoying and that’s what this movie is like, the writing mixed with the characters is grating and gets you in the “can this movie please be over” type of mood.

Family Camp is available on all VOD Platforms.

Disgrace To Cinema F

Better Nate Than Ever is harmless but doesn’t offer anything new.

Thirteen year old Nate Foster fantasizes about becoming a Broadway star. However, he struggles to even get roles in his high school play. When Nate’s parents leave for the weekend, he and his friends decide to make Nate a star.

Better Nate Than Ever is another case of a Disney Channel original movie disguised as a Disney+ Original. While it’s definitely not bad and overall pretty harmless, the plot is just way too generic and plays out exactly how you think it’s going to. The cast is at least decent giving some pretty entertaining performances as well as Rueby Wood’s singing which is honestly not bad, but do not go in expecting a musical. There’s only about 4 songs all of which are pretty solid in their own right, it’s just calling this a musical is a bit of a stretch. The main criticism comes down to the plot being really nothing special as well as some of the jokes, there’s a few jokes that might get a chuckle out of you. However there’s a ton of jokes that really make you question “who thought this was a good idea?” As far as the plot it’s very basic family movie stuff that feels a bit too familiar. Better Nate Than Ever is definitely better than expected but it’s not something I would recommend watching.

Better Nate Than Ever is available on Disney+

5/10 C

The Wolf And The Lion has confused messaging.

After her grandfather’s death, 20-year-old Alma decides to go back to her childhood home — a little island in the heart of a majestic forest. While there, she rescues two helpless cubs: a wolf and a lion. They forge an inseparable bond, but their world soon collapses when a forest ranger discovers the animals and takes them away. The two cubs must now embark on a treacherous journey across the wilderness to reunite with each other and Alma.

So I didn’t realize this until just writing this review but The Wolf And The Lion is directed by Gilles de Maistre who also directed Mia And The White Lion which quite honestly explains so much. While this movie is a tad bit better than Mia And The White Lion, that is really not saying much at all. The worst part about this movie is that it has a ton of plot holes which is something you would not expect from a movie like this, combine that with the pacing plus a lot of terrible dialogue and you get yourself a very messy movie. The best parts of the movie are the Lion and the Wolf, the other characters are just not interesting or have anything going for them. The last half of the movie is especially confused about what it wants to say and what it wants to be, the movie compares forced circus performance with scientific research. There’s family drama in it that ultimately doesn’t lead up to anything interesting, then the movie eventually ends. Overall The Wolf And The Lion is terrible it’s fine if you want to see cute animals but then again you are better off looking at cute animal videos rather than sit through this.

The Wolf And The Lions is available on all VOD Platforms.

2/10 F

The Tiger Rising fails at it’s metaphors.

When 12-year-old Rob Horton discovers a caged tiger in the woods near his home, his imagination runs wild as his life begins to change in the most unexpected ways. With help from a wise but mysterious maid and the stubborn new girl at school, Rob navigates through childhood memories, heartache and wondrous adventures.

The Tiger Rising is based on a 116 page book by Kate DiCamillo (same author who wrote Because Of Winn-Dixie) it shows and not in a good way. The movie tries to stretch as much as possible before falling apart, there’s some touching moments that are sweet. But the acting and writing are just not strong enough to make you feel for any of the characters, there could have been a very clever metaphor here about the Tiger being locked in the cage for Rob (played by Christian Convery) being locked inside his house. However the narration flat out tells the audience and it’s executed in a way where there was a lot more to be desired, the moral of the movie does not match what the rest of it was trying to say, the ending turns the movie into something completely different and not in a good way. It does a very poor job of trying make the plot something other than coming off as melodrama, it’s a shame because there could have been some deep diving into some of the characters and how the tiger connects to it all. The Tiger Rising is something kids will most certainly not sit through and it’s too surface level for adults. Give this one a skip.

The Tiger Rising is available on all VOD Platforms.

2/10 F

8-Bit Christmas is a familiar yet charming Christmas Family Movie, Black Friday is a missed opportunity.

In 1980s Chicago, a ten-year-old sets out on a quest to get the Christmas gift of his generation – the latest and greatest video game system.

8-Bit Christmas definitely surprised me, although there really isn’t a whole to discuss here since the movie pretty much is A Christmas Story but with Nintendo. The movie still manages to be a whole lot of fun and actually hits pretty hard at the end as well, the performances are what you expect however Steve Zahn gives such a fun performance that it was worth bringing up (think of his performance in Diary Of A Wimpy Kid it’s pretty much the same here!) the movie also has some surprisingly decent jokes. Sure not all of them hit but there was definitely effort to make this movie actually pretty funny, which I can’t say the same for a lot of Christmas family comedies. Then there’s the heart of the film which I genuinely thought was very touching, it doesn’t come off as very tacky or forced it actually feels genuine. Which is what separates it from a lot of the clutter, also the style of the film was surprisingly pretty decent. It doesn’t have that cheap feeling a lot of these Christmas family comedies have, overall 8-Bit Christmas is familiar but still a very fun time to watch!

8-Bit Christmas is available on HBO Max!

A group of toy store employees must protect each other from a horde of parasite infected shoppers.

Black Friday desperately wants to be Krampus (2015) but fails to recognize what made Krampus actually pretty solid. For starters while the movie has a very fun premise it’s executed in such a lazy way that it’s almost surprising. Bruce Campbell and Michael Jai White are the best parts about this movie and easily give some good laughs, what mostly hurts this movie is the terrible writing, the characters feeling almost identical to each other and the humor almost never working. The humor has it’s moments towards the beginning but quickly wears off as it goes on, it’s another one of those horror comedies that tries to do way too much at a time. The characters really don’t bring anything interesting to the table as most of them are cliched characters with little to no personality, with that said there are fun moments to be had with Black Friday but it’s an overall a misfire that really shouldn’t had been.

Black Friday is available on all VOD Platforms!

3/10 D-

Home Sweet Home Alone is a unnecessary sequel/soft remake to the original.

A married couple tries to steal back a valuable heirloom from a troublesome kid.

I really have to give Home Sweet Home Alone some credit, it somehow managed to have some of the worst writing I’ve seen all year, so what’s this movie’s deal? Well apparently it’s a sequel/sort of soft remake (I say soft remake because there is one character from the past that does make a cameo appearance) outside of Home Alone and parts of Home Alone 2 I never cared for the series at all. But this was just a pathetic attempt to cash in on a popular name, a lot of the jokes already feel dated as a good handful of them are memes. I’ve said this before in the past but putting memes in your movie is something you should absolutely not do, not only does it make the movie in question feel outdated but it shows a lack of creativity. The acting here was horrendous, there wasn’t one performance where I feel there was any attempt of trying to be good, especially when combined with the writing that I’m shocked someone looked over and said “this is acceptable send it out!” Overall I just don’t have any more words to say, Home Sweet Home Alone is as bad as you think it’s going to be, it’s another prime example of a very pointless sequel/remake of a series that should be left alone at this point.

Home Sweet Home Alone is available on Disney+

Disgrace To Cinema F

Clifford The Big Red Dog is a harmless and fun movie for kids!

A young girl’s love for a tiny puppy named Clifford makes the dog grow to an enormous size.

Not a whole lot to say but Clifford The Big Red Dog honestly surprised me, from the trailers this looked like another terrible movie where they take a classic cartoon character and turn them into CG. However unlike a lot of the other movies this one manages to be surprisingly entertaining at times. There are a handful of moments where the writing feels like it’s still living in the early 2000s, however there are some genuine charming moments between Darby Camp, Jack Whitehall and Clifford. The acting is actually not too bad, Darby Camp does a pretty decent job with what she’s given. I feel like this movie is a rare instance with a lot of these family movies where the side characters are actually funny, I actually wanted to see more of them so at least the movie has that going for it. Overall Clifford The Big Red Dog is a very traditional family movie, it ends exactly how you think it’s going to but is a ton of fun for kids!

Clifford The Big Red Dog is now available on Paramount+

6/10 C+

A Christmas Gift From Bob is a charming movie for the holidays!

A struggling street musician finds himself the target of an animal welfare investigation that threatens to take away his beloved cat at Christmas.

A Christmas Gift From Bob is the sequel to the 2016 film A Street Cat Named Bob which was one of my favorite films from 2016 and was overall one of my favorite films of the 2010s. A Christmas Gift From Bob is a very traditional good defeating evil type Christmas story but what the movie uses to it’s advantage is Luke Treadaway as James Bowen and Bob The Cat himself (who sadly passed away last year) relationship and portraying it very well. A Street Cat Named Bob showed just how much Bob changed James Bowen’s life, while A Christmas Gift From Bob does have a lot of Christmas movie elements, we still get more to the story of James and Bob. How they look out for each other, the acting and writing are both surprisingly well done. There are hiccups during the first act of the movie and it strangely took a bit to get going, but when you get passed the first act the movie is very charming, meaningful and heartwarming. It’s a celebration for James and Bob! While A Christmas Gift From Bob might not be as good as it’s predecessor its still a very charming and heartwarming movie that I do highly recommend.

R.I.P. Bob 

A Christmas Gift From Bob is now available on all VOD Platforms!

7/10 B

Cinderella (2021) fails at being a good adaption and fails at being a decent movie.

A modern movie musical with a bold take on the classic fairy tale. Our ambitious heroine has big dreams and with the help of her fab Godmother, she perseveres to make them come true.

Cinderella (2021) did manage to do one thing…unite all sides or Twitter to absolutely destroy it, that aside this new adaption of Cinderella truly feels like a complete waste of time. Billy Porter (who is barely in the movie) and Idina Menzel (at times) are the only two positives I can give this movie, the rest of it is a huge mess. First off Camila Cabello’s performance is one of the most nothing special about it performances I’ve seen so far this year, I just didn’t buy Camila as Cinderella had this been some other performance than maybe. Almost all of the songs were covers….bad covers, trying to combine songs like Rhythm Nation into a Cinderella story just feels way too out of place and completely takes you out of the movie. Don’t even get me started on the jokes, if I have to hear James Corden talking about how proud he is of his “front tail” ever again I swear I’m going to quit reviewing films. The jokes in this movie are some of the most unfunny and painful I’ve listened to in recent memory, which only shocks me because Kay Cannon who directed Blockers is the director. While I’m not one of those people who found Blockers hysterical i at least found it to be one of the better modern comedies. Then there’s the whole look of the movie, it feels very cheaply made (the CGI on the mice look like they are from a very early PS2 game). I appreciate at times the movie was trying to do something a little bit different but the problem is the movie fails at that as well, this version of Cinderella also tries to shoehorn this whole “girlboss” narrative into it but that falls flat as well. There’s no build up, no character development or any really growth. Overall Cinderella (2021) completely misses it fails as an adaption of Cinderella (can we please stop with Cinderella adaptions?) and it fails at being an actual decent movie. You are better off watching any other Cinderella story that came before this one.

Cinderella is now available on Amazon Prime Video!

1/10 F

The Boss Baby: Family Business (2021) Movie Review!

Now adults, Tim Templeton is a stay-at-home dad for two adorable daughters, while his estranged brother, Ted, is a big-shot CEO. They come together in an unexpected way when they take a magical formula that transforms them into babies for 48 hours. Joining forces with Tim’s secret-agent daughter, they must go under cover to prevent an evil genius from turning fellow toddlers into monstrous brats.

I’m going to be completely honest The Boss Baby Family Business wasn’t actually that terrible, is it a good movie? Absolutely not but it’s far better than the first movie, this one actually seemed like effort was put into it. There’s also a few jokes in the movie that actually worked and a few okay moments as well, having that said the rest of the movie is really not good at all. A lot of the jokes end up missing (a lot less bathroom jokes thank goodness) mostly due to either not being funny or just have very poor execution. The main problem with this movie is it ends up being an overall very generic kids movie despite some bizarre ideas that happen in the movie. Which I really do like those ideas it makes the movie have a bit more personality I just wish it could have stuck with it and did more with it as well. The animation is nice and actually detailed at times, the writing while not good isn’t horrendous. Overall The Boss Baby: Family Business isn’t the worst movie of the year, if it’s job was to be better than the first movie well it accomplished that. If it’s job was to be a good movie….it didn’t succeed.

The Boss Baby: Family Business is now available on Peacock!

4/10 D+