I apologize for this very late review of Scream VI, I saw this March 9th, I hadn’t reviewed it yet because I wanted to be sure to get each of my thoughts down. Anyway Scream VI is the 6th installment of the franchise and serves as a sequel to Scream (2022), this is a franchise that is known to always hit it out of the park. Even with it’s weakest entry (Scream 3 in my opinion) it’s still not a terrible movie, Scream VI brings a whole lot to the table and ends up being one of the franchise’s best.
For starters the cast truly blends so well together here, I have always said this but one thing that truly makes the Scream franchise so great is how easily the characters can blend so well together. There’s so many moments and Scream VI that really show that very well, there’s a lot of standouts here such as Jenna Ortega, Hayden Panettiere, Courtney Cox, Mason Gooding and Jasmin Savoy Brown. Each performance truly feels special and adds quite a lot to the whole film.
If Scream (2022) was a love letter to the franchise than Scream VI is a huge celebration of the franchise. There is so much here that dives into several moments from the other films, tons of callbacks as well that don’t feel shoehorned into the movie. They have a purpose of why they are here and add to the overall plot, the whole use of the New York City setting was truly fantastic. I was a bit worried they weren’t going to take full advantage of it considering some slasher movies in the past really failed to do so, but luckily that wasn’t the case here. Between creative kills, use of environment and Tyler Gillet’s and Matt Bettinelli-Olpin’s direction it was very successful.
There’s tons of scenes here that are some of the best of the franchise and have already been celebrated by many fans, the main one being the ladder scene that is just so well done. Between the atmosphere, the overall situation and the thrilling nature with the camera angles there is so much there that really hits the viewer hard. There’s the third act which is definitely divisive among fans, however I do think it matches the overall nature and atmosphere the movie was going for throughout it’s running time.
Scream VI had this nature of not knowing what to expect and the least unexpected could pop up in your face, it’s something that truly pulls bizarre moments out of hat and throws into the viewer’s face which ends up being wildly entertaining. Which definitely matches with what the third act really did. Plus when you combine that with the kills that are truly some of the franchise’s best you get some really strong results.
Overall Scream VI is phenomenal and one of the best films so far this year, it’s a film that is truly a celebration to this fantastic franchise that I can’t wait to see where they go next.
Inside is definitely a strange one, in a lot of ways it did surprise me quite a bit. For a movie about a guy who gets trapped in a high-tech penthouse this movie does have quite a few different ideas floating around.
To get the obvious out of the way Willem Dafoe is truly fantastic here, he absolutely nails it with him being a one man show and even with several scenes that don’t have any dialogue he’s able to show his character Nemo’s thoughts and actions masterfully. There’s a lot of symbolism going on here that really gets you invested the more it goes on and it really starts to fuse together into this very atmospheric narrative.
Speaking of which the atmosphere is very well done, it’s dark and has this sense of being trapped in a very limited space that Nemo desperately wants to get out of. During the film Nemo slowly but surely goes into madness, where Dafoe starts to give a very unhinged performance that really makes the movie standout quite a lot. There’s a lot of gross scenes that admittedly did make me cringe and absolutely did catch me off guard, which If I had to guess show the desperation of Nemo in his situation.
Finally there’s the last bit of the movie that perfectly sums up Inside quite well, at this point Nemo has gone completely insane and is at his limit, it’s truly interesting to see how far the penthouse pushed him and his dedication to escape. The more I think about Inside the more I like it, it’s most certainly not going to be for everyone. But if it does sound interesting to you I do recommend giving it a go.
Children Of The Corn (2020 although it finally released in 2023) is the if you can actually believe it eleventh installment to the series and the second remake to the 1984 movie. In the past I’ve expressed my opinions about the series, but for those who are new here it’s a series that I think is horrendous. Even with the first movie the series unlike other horror franchises has failed time and time again to bring something interesting and really solid to the table.
There’s this pattern of each new release being worse than the last, which leads us to Children Of The Corn (2020). The main reason why it says 2020 is because it got a very small release in Sarasota a county on the Gulf Cost of the U.S. state of Florida, after that the movie went through the “it’s coming this year” phase over and over again until January 2023 when RLJE and Shudder acquired the streaming rights, it then finally released in March…so what is the end result?
To put it simply Children Of The Corn (2020) is horrendous in every possible way you can think of, they clearly wanted to do a reimagining here but that quickly backfires. The editing is absolutely atrocious and makes what should be very simple scenes all the more confusing, especially when it’s trying to use flashback scenes or something to do with time. The acting is just straight up horrible, the child actors in particular give very lifeless and very unthreatening performances. Even if I didn’t like the original 1984 movie at the very least the kids in that movie gave somewhat creepy performances (although you can argue that it doesn’t hold up well and they are unintentionally funny).
Perhaps the biggest issue with this movie is that it takes itself way too seriously, from the kills, gore and even writing this installment wants the viewer to take it seriously right from the beginning. With that sort of writing that even tries to throw in this whole “the adults are destroying the children’s world so they want revenge” plot into it is just very baffling. While the idea itself isn’t the problem, it’s the overall execution which is nothing but just some gory kills and also slap in some horrible looking cgi monster at the end.
The movie also barely explains the whole feud between the adults and children, one day some girl named Eden gets possessed and convinces the children to attack. And the viewer is just supposed to accept that without getting some actual conflict outside of a few adults making fun of the kids.
Honestly I’m not sure what more I can really say Children Of The Corn (2020) is by far one of the worst films I’ve seen so far this year (I’m counting it as a 2023 film, that 2020 release was so small it almost felt like it didn’t come out at all), what I just described to you in my review was pretty much the entire movie. It’s about as bare bones as you can get and is just another awful installment to a horrendous franchise that needs to stop.
Children Of The Corn (2020) is available on all VOD platforms.
I actually had some sort of hope for Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey, the whole idea of a horror themed Winnie the Pooh movie sounded like it could be campy fun that could give the viewer a ton of entertainment….unfortunately that’s not what happened here.
Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey is what happens when you take an absurd concept and make it into the most dull way possible, for starters the movie is ultimately some guy in a $5 Party City Winnie the Pooh mask going around killing people. Piglet did fair a bit better but that’s not saying much considering he felt like an entirely different character, I understand the movie was very low budget but come on this is about as unimaginative as you can really get.
The acting and writing are both horrendous especially when we meet the main protagonists who serve nothing more than to be killed off, they are some of the most poorly written slasher movie characters I’ve seen in awhile and that is truly saying something. They have no personalities, no character moments and absolutely no qualities that make the viewer care at all. Rather than exploring the whole plot surrounding Christopher Robin we instead follow these characters which really shows uninspired the movie really is.
I’ve hinted at this but if you took away the whole Winnie the Pooh idea away you are left a very bare bones slasher movie that so many other movies completely outclass it in every single way possible, I am all for absurd ideas in fact I’ve liked quite a few movies in the past which had very out there ideas. However if you are going to make one of those movies, the number one thing to absolutely avoid doing is making the execution as dull as possible.
Which is unfortunately the biggest downfall of Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey, it takes the concept and does absolutely nothing with it. Instead it’s just a very low budget slasher movie that has nothing going for it or has anything that stands out, making this whole thing feel very pointless. It’s a shame because as I said at the beginning there is potential for a horror Winnie the Pooh movie to work, it’s just not happening with this one.
Winnie The Pooh: Blood and Honey is currently in limited theaters
Boston Strangler as a true crime drama I definitely think it goes the job done well enough, the problem is it could have been so much more than just well enough.
Kiera Knightley and Carrie Coon are both really solid here and give some quite raw performances at times that easily capture some of the movie’s best moments. There’s some solid dialogue that captures the overall disturbing nature of the crime as well as some very dark atmosphere that much like the dialogue captures the disturbing nature of the crimes committed.
It is sort of impossible to talk about this movie without brining up the clear as day David Fincher elements used some people can and have made the argument that it really comes off as a rip-off particularly to Zodiac and Se7en. Which I really can’t help but agree that there are Fincher elements used some scenes almost feel identical just nowhere near as effective as they were in Fincher’s films. I would normally write off a movie doing that right there, but at the very least Boston Strangler does make up for it with some really engaging scenes that does bring in the viewer.
The third act definitely crumbles at the end, it’s very much a case of the path to getting to the third act was much more interesting than the final act itself, it sort of just tacks on ending and calls it a day. Really comes off as if there were a few scenes missing.
Despite my review sounding a bit negative I actually did have a decent enough time with Boston Strangler, it has strong act, great atmosphere and dialogue and engages the viewer well enough.
Operation Fortune: Ruse de Guerre certainly does in fact exist that’s for sure, to cut the movie’s long history of just not coming out short. The movie was delayed a few times January 2022 and March 2022 to be exact, it was pulled due to featuring gangsters of Ukrainian nationality as the main antagonist. Which you could probably figure out was because of the war in Ukraine sparked global outrage, the film producers thought it would inappropriate so they pulled it.
As for the movie itself, what exactly is there to say? While the cast is actually pretty good particularly Aubrey Plaza, Cary Elwes (always great to see him) and Jason Statham. Plus I do think there’s some decently fun action scenes here, there’s ultimately very little this movie does better than a lot of other movies in the same exact same genre.
Guy Richie does put in his traditional elements he uses in his action films and they actually work here, some fast paced action, some decently put together moments that really engage the viewer and bring you close to the action. It’s all there and works pretty well, it’s just been done far better in other places heck some of Guy Richie’s own films have the exact same sort of elements and do them a lot better (The Man from U.N.C.L.E and The Gentlemen)
Having that said the movie is decently made and does have it’s fair share of fun moments that can be very fun, it’s definitely not one of Guy Richie’s absolute best but it’s not terrible either.
Operation Fortune: Ruse de Guerre is available in theaters.
Why does anyone care if Chang can or cannot dunk? Jokes aside I was definitely expecting the worst with Chang Can Dunk, in some ways it’s a bit better than I thought and in others well it’s exactly what I expected it to be.
The performances are fine enough, particularly Bloom Li who’s given a script that is on the level of a bad Disney Channel Original Movie. He does what he can with it and I definitely respect him for that, Dexter Darden is decently fun as well and I actually liked Zoe Renee despite her ultimately just being the love interest and that’s it. It’s definitely one of the better made Disney+ movies, it goes for this bigger in scale type of feel which I will admit is kind of surprising to see from this sort of movie.
Unfortunately just about everything else is either terrible or falls into the forgettable category, the writing as I said earlier is not that much different from a Disney Channel movie it’s just a bit more mature with it’s tone and that’s pretty much it, the movie is very predictable to the point where you can guess what is going to happen within the first 10 minutes. The movie attempts to go for a coming of age sort of feel which doesn’t work nearly as well as they thought it did, which again comes down to the writing.
We aren’t given a whole lot of character moments with any of the characters even with Chang himself, we are given very surface level information that a lot of these Disney+ movies tend to give and then the movie decides to move on to the next scene. Part of what makes a good coming of age movie is character development and character moments, where we learn about the character, how they feel, what their goals are, who they are as a person and much more.
I can definitely respect that Chang Can Dunk at the very least attempted to try and be a coming of age movie (something you really done often see in modern Disney movies) but it doesn’t do it well here unfortunately, I definitely think with a much more focused and better written script there could have been something really great here.
Unwelcome is an odd one and I don’t mean that in a good way, this is the very definition of not deciding what sort of tone you want for your movie.
The first few minutes of the movie is actually kind of dark, performances from Hannah John-Kamen and Douglas Booth make it work quite well (although the script does hurt it a bit), then soon after that the movie goes for this throwback to the attack of little creatures era. You know like Ghoulies, Critters, Gremlins and maybe even the Leprechaun franchise? Which I’m all for we haven’t had one of those types of movies in awhile, the problem is where as those movies knew what sort of tone they wanted and stuck with it. Unwelcome doesn’t do that, it wants to be one of those movies but at the same time wants to be taken seriously.
That’s especially shown when the goblins start attacking, the scenes aren’t anywhere near as goofy as you would expect. They have this very odd serious tone to them that makes them goofy in a sort of way that isn’t very fun at all, I will give Unwelcome this…it’s a nice movie to look at. There’s a surprising amount of decently well done shots here that really caught me off guard, they might not be anything to write home about but they do match the setting quite well.
Lastly there’s the writing which as I hinted at before it’s not exactly that great, while it’s not terrible it does fall on the bare bones side of things. Something you can get elsewhere and far better too.
Unwelcome is at least decently made and has some good moments, but ultimately has a very hard time deciding what sort of tone it wants to go for.
A genre that Netflix often struggles with is animation when it comes to films, every once and awhile you will get some really good ones like Klaus or The Sea Beast for example. But a lot of the time they really land on the forgettable territory.
I watched The Magician’s Elephant yesterday (at the time this was written) and I honestly couldn’t tell you exactly what happens, mainly due to just how forgettable it really was. The few good qualities come from the animation, which does have it’s issues with the human characters. But for everything else it’s smooth and is nicely done for the most part. The voice cast isn’t too bad, it’s clear everyone involved is trying their absolute hardest to make this work.
What really does this movie in is mostly in the writing department, there’s so much potential here that could be written thoughtfully and in a way that could even resonate with audiences. But unfortunately it’s written in the sort of way a lot of bad kid’s movies tend to be, focuses a bit too much on humor and relies on very bland character moments to tell a story. The movie really lacks the spark in it’s writing to get the audience engaged and ultimately leads down a forgettable path.
65 is so far the most disappointing movie of 2023 for a multitude of reasons, 65 had a very promising premise as well having the writers from A Quiet Place and Adam Driver involved. Finally it was a movie involving dinosaurs attacking people, which is unbelievably uncommon outside of the Jurassic Park movies.
I’ll start with what worked as always, Adam Driver does a fantastic job here. Driver has always been a really strong actor and that applies here, Ariana Greenblatt is also pretty solid here as well. Driver and Greenblatt work very well together on screen there’s some genuinely sweet moments as well. There’s some neat action scenes that are pretty thrilling as well and I do appreciate the limited dialogue scenes in a lot of areas in the movie. They add some suspense that is well done for the most part.
Unfortunately that’s really where the movie ends for me, a lot of people have said this movie is basically Jurassic Park meets A Quiet Place and I can’t help but agree, while that might sound good on paper when it comes to execution it becomes a mess. The movie doesn’t do nearly enough with it’s premise and the limited dialogue scenes while interesting never really amount to anything, there’s some decently suspenseful moments that were begging to be explored more.
A lot of the sci-fi elements are very surface level at best, and the direction is sort of lifeless. While I understand that might have been the intention due to earth not having any humans at this time, it doesn’t help when 65 tries to explore Adam Driver’s character. While his past about his daughter is very upsetting the viewer just isn’t given nearly enough development to really care. It’s sort of tacked on to a very below average sci-fi movie.
Overall 65 had a lot of potential but unfortunately misses the mark, if you are a fan of Adam Driver and want to see this only because of Driver you might get something out of it otherwise I don’t recommend it.