It’s honestly such a shame Love Lizzo had incredibly poor advertising (you would think a documentary about one of the biggest stars right now would have so much better advertising) but with that aside this documentary is truly an honest one. The documentary serves as almost a personal diary for Lizzo to tell the viewer everything, from body positivity to self-love and much more, there’s some really strong discussions here that are absolutely worth listening to. Lizzo talks about her early life, her dad’s death and so much more. But perhaps what makes Love Lizzo standout as a documentary is how authentic it really is, there’s tons of personal moments where it feels like you are sitting in the room with Lizzo having a discussion. There isn’t a whole lot more to say here, if you are a fan of Lizzo you will most definitely love this one.
Scrooge: A Christmas Carol is exactly what you expect it to be, it’s basically yet another take on the classic story by Charles Dickens. And it pretty much plays out all of the events of the story you expect to, only this one is a musical. The songs are surprisingly very charming and are by far some of the best parts of the movie, there’s a ton of energy to them and the singing voices are quite great as well, unfortunately what does bog the movie down is the character designs. Which really looks like those mobile game ads you commonly see, the three ghosts are exempt from this which they actually have some pretty neat designs and are voice very well! Olivia Colman voices Ghost of Christmas Past while Trevor Dion Nicholas voices Ghost of Christmas Present, both do a really solid job and bring so much charm to their roles, plus the two are actually pretty funny. Luke Evans as Scrooge is fine enough, he gets the job done but it’s nothing really to write home about. As I said before the story plays out exactly how you expect it to and if you can past the character designs you will find a genuinely fun movie here. It’s probably not something that you will ever revisit but for what it is it’s not half bad.
Scrooge: A Christmas Carol is available on Netflix.
A Hollywood Christmas is HBO Max Christmas movie number four (not even halfway through December yet). This is not as bad as expected but good lord is this the definition of bland, it’s essentially about a movie director who wants to make a Christmas movie and wants to keep the Christmas formula until some network executive threatens to halt production. The premise itself actually leads to a couple moments that got a laugh out of me and I’ll give the movie credit it actually tried to use it’s premise in a interesting way. Well at least at first…it slowly but surely starts to evolve into the bad Christmas type of movie we all know and it does very little to recover. The writing is very forgettable, the characters aren’t anything to write home about and the rest of the movie is sort of a mess. A Hollywood Christmas isn’t offensive or anything, it’s just another very forgettable Christmas movie that after the credits roll you won’t ever come back to.
Father Of The Bride (2022) is the third film adaption of the novel of the same name, the other two being a 1950 film and a 1991 film. I’m not going to pretend I’m a super fan of either of the movies, for what they are they are solid comedy/romantic films that do a pretty decent job of entertaining the viewer. This version falls short mostly due to it overstaying it’s welcome, is a 1 hour and 58 minute movie that has horrendous pacing. It begins to feel like a chore to sit through unfortunately mostly due to not a whole lot happening, the performances are at least decent enough Chloe Fineman being the standout who’s genuinely hilarious in her delivery. Everything else just fine I guess, the writing really doesn’t do much to engage the viewer, the direction doesn’t really do anything offensive but nothing investing. It’s the type of movie where you would only watch unless there was absolutely nothing else.
Father Of The Bride is available on HBO Max.
There’s a good idea somewhere in Press Play, it’s just sadly not fully realized. The acting is not too bad here the leads Lewis Pullman and Clara Rugaard-Larsen are both solid and Danny Glover in a supporting role isn’t too bad either. The main problem with this movie is it really doesn’t have anything going for it, everything is kept at a bare minimum level and introduces the concept of the movie but never goes further with it. Or at least doesn’t do anything noteworthy with it. It just ends up being a very safe romantic drama that surprisingly struggles with it’s more emotional moments, which is mainly due to the movie not knowing how to make the characters react to said moments. At the very least it didn’t over stay it’s welcome.
Press Play is available on all VOD platforms.
I’m going to be real quick with this one because to be completely honest here…I’m not exactly sure what the whole purpose of this was. From what I could gather this movie is nothing like the book and in fact doesn’t even follow it well at all, but okay that doesn’t automatically mean it’s bad right? Well In this case it does, from the acting to the writing and the pacing it’s a complete and total mess on every single level. It’s a very lifeless movie that is the very definition of release date fodder, it’s just there so Netflix can say they released something. If you have seen any of Netflix’s terrible romantic comedies before then you have already seen this one.
Honestly there isn’t a lot here to be said despite the documentary being 2 hours and 15 minutes, what we have here is a deep dive into Tony Hawk’s career and him as a person. The documentary surprisingly goes in great depth and has this element in it about moving on as you get older. Tony Hawk is a skateboarding icon heck a sports icon at this point, yet we still learn so much more about him from this documentary it feels very personal and really grabs the attention of the viewer quite well. There’s so much detail in this documentary to the point where it’s quite fascinating and while yes some of the information is common knowledge it’s still beautiful to hear Tony Hawk talk about his career, the only main flaw with the documentary is the running time as I said earlier it’s 2 hours and 15 minutes. Which I do feel like 10-13 minutes could have easily been trimmed because it does feel like the documentary crams a little too much information at once at times. However everything else about this documentary is incredibly solid and quite interesting, even if you aren’t a fan of Tony Hawk or skateboarding I do highly recommend checking this out!
Tony Hawk: Until The Wheels Fall Off will release April 5th on HBO and HBO Max!
Steven Soderbergh explores many different types of genres and it’s something I truly respect him for even if they don’t always work. Kimi is a thriller a genre that Soderbergh is does really well and that shows here, Zoë Kravitz gives a very strong performance that actually keeps things grounded, combine her performance with Soderbergh’s direction and you truly get something special. The pacing is absolutely fantastic here, this is the type of pacing that I wish more thrillers attempted, you have such a nicely paced film that is both suspenseful and energetic as well. The atmosphere is some of the most suspenseful I’ve felt from a thriller in quite some time, it has that good old fashion Soderbergh thrilling atmosphere to it. Then there’s the camerawork which Soderbergh continues to prove that he’s a mastermind behind the camera, each shot has it’s own identity and truly feels special in a unique way. The film combines themes of paranoia and technology both and does both those themes very well, it captures why we feel paranoid about technology. Such examples we ask ourselves are Who’s watching? Who’s listening? and so on, Kimi is also a film that actually uses the premise of Siri or Alexa in a clever way. The film goes for a more serious tone with using the two with some very strong writing as well, overall Kimi is so far one of the best films of the year and is absolutely something that you should check out!
Well we are here! The final month of 2021, what a year it has been! We have seen fantastic films that I’m excited to talk about when I do my top 100 best films of the year and we have seen terrible movies that I’ll be talking about with my top 100 worst films of the year. But before all that let’s talk December 2021! It’s a month that is filled with very interesting releases that I’m quite excited to see, since the format I did last time was successful and a lot of people loved it I will be sticking with that. Name the movie and release date then move on to the next movie. There’s only so many times I can say “I’m super excited for this movie” or “I saw the trailer and I’m hyped” until it becomes redundant. So here’s the list folks!
20. Mother/Android – December 17th (Hulu)
19. Silent Night – December 3rd (VOD)
18. Swan Song – December 17th (Apple TV+)
17. Shaun The Sheep: The Flight Before Christmas – December 3rd (Netflix)
16. Being The Ricardos – December 10th (Theater) and December 21st (Amazon Prime Video)
15. The Unforgivable – December 10th (Netflix)
14. Spider-Man No Way Home – December 17th (Theater)
13. Bendetta – December 3rd (Theater) and December 21st (VOD)
12. Flee – December 3rd (Theaters)
11. The Hand Of God – December 3rd (Theater) and December 15th (Netflix)
10. The Novice – December 17th (VOD)
9. Red Rocket – December 10th (Theaters)
8. Matrix Resurrections – December 22nd (Theaters and HBO Max)
7. The Lost Daughter – December 17th (Theater) and December 31st (Netflix)
6. Don’t Look Up – December 10th (Theater) and December 24th (Netflix)
5. Memoria – December 26th (Theaters)
4. The Tragedy Of MacBeth – December 25th (Theater) and January 14th (Apple TV+)
3. The Power Of The Dog – December 1st (Netflix)
2. Nightmare Alley – December 17th (Theaters)
1. Licorice Pizza – December 25th (Theaters)
And there you have it! I will be making a list of films I need to watch and review before I finalize my best and worst list very soon! Some 2021 films are going to be releasing in 2022 as usual so it will be a wait. But I promise you the lists will be worth it as I’m going to make things more interesting!
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!
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.
Women is Losers has a lot of heart and means well when dealing with heavy subjects, unfortunately it feels way too on the nose and doesn’t say anything new or add anything into the conversation. Lorenza Izzo gives a great performance and is the highlight of some strong moments in the movie, the music I actually thought was pretty decent and the ending is actually solid. The writing is what’s holding Women is Losers back, a lot of it feels very surface level at best and while yes does tackle some heavy topics and is commendable it feels like it doesn’t do enough with it. It doesn’t help that the tone of the movie is a mess at times as well. Overall Women is Losers is a missed opportunity which is unfortunate because this most definitely had a ton of potential.
Denis Villeneuve’s Dune has been one of the most anticipated films for the longest time now, mostly due to Villeneuve’s ability to take a familiar Sci-Fi story (Blade Runner 2049) or Sci-Fi and other films in general (Arrival, Sicario, Enemy, Incendies and Prisoners) and do an incredible job with it. Dune is no exception, but before we get to the directing let’s talk about what else makes this film incredible. First off the character development is largely different than you see in other films, which I find to be quite unique. The use of a ton of quiet moments and show the emotions of the characters in the scene that’s currently going on adds some real power to them. It makes you feel like you are part of the journey along with the characters, the acting and writing both feel incredibly raw which isn’t something you often get in a lot of Sci-Fi films. I’m not going to go over every single actor in the film but I will go over the ones who I thought were the strongest, Timothée Chalamet did a fantastic job as Paul Atreides this is something much different than the type of performances that he usually does. So it is very refreshing to see him try something new and it payed off really well, he plays the part of a young hero very well and really captures what being a hero is about. Jason Momoa and Oscar Isaac are both fantastic here, both give some of the most powerful and striking scenes of the film as well as some very important ones. It’s really great to see two incredible actors at their best giving some of the best performances of the year. Finally Rebecca Ferguson who easily gives the best performance of the film, she does a masterful job as Lady Jessica and becomes the character, it’s truly beautiful and captures several of the best moments of Dune. If there is going to be one person who gets nominated when award season begins (which is next month) make it be Rebecca Ferguson. The writing is incredibly strong as I said before it feels very raw and does not feel manufactured at all, it feels like a character study combined with the events of the story. The direction from Denis Villeneuve is masterful, once again Villeneuve shows that he’s one of the best filmmakers working today. He took a familiar Sci-Fi story and made it his own from the ground up. His directing style especially works here, combine that with the cinematography and the visuals and you have yourself a masterfully made film. The cinematography and visuals are both gorgeous, both transport you into the world of which Dune is takes place and it really does feel like your there! Overall Dune is an outstanding film that succeeds on every single level, I highly recommend giving this one a watch! Looking forward to see what’s in store for Part 2!