Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey (2020)

An imaginary world comes to life in a holiday tale of an eccentric toymaker, his adventurous granddaughter, and a magical invention that has the power to change their lives forever.

I’m not sure which is more surprising…David E. Talbert finally making an actual decent movie or that this is the best Christmas Netflix Original movie since Klaus. It’s definitely not something I would say is really great, but it has a lot going for it. For starters the music and the singing blend very well together, everyone did a very good job when it comes to singing. The acting was decent enough and the writing did have some heartwarming moments as well. The one major flaw with this movie is the running time, it’s 2 hours and 2 minutes which it definitely did not need to be. Some scenes really drag out and are only dragged out so they can make the running time. Trim at least 15-20 minutes of the film and you would still have the same movie. With that said Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey is a very fun Christmas movie that families will definitely love!

6/10 C+

Over The Moon (2020)

An adventurous girl builds a rocket ship to meet a mythical goddess on the moon.

Over The Moon was definitely a surprise, outside of Klaus there really isn’t anything else noteworthy of Netflix’s original animated movie department. Over The Moon is one of those movies that manages to standout among the crowd, this should go without saying but the animation is truly beautiful. It’s beautifully done and gives a lot of detail especially for the human characters, that’s where the animation really shines the most. I thought the whole theme of “trying to move on from a huge loss” was really done and was very well combined with the music in the film. A lot of the songs are actually quite great, there’s a lot of standouts that I can easily see being nominated. The singing from Cathy Ang is wonderful, she can truly sing her heart out as well as putting so much emotion into her voice. In fact I actually cried during a few moments during this film, because it really does start getting to you as the viewer. It’s a beautiful film that explores so much, but does it in the best way possible. The writing I felt had a lot of character moments that were important for the character development and I honestly thought all of the characters were a lot of fun and interesting. Overall I was really impressed with Over The Moon, it’s one of my favorite films of the year definitely check this one out!

9/10 A

David Byrne’s American Utopia (2020)

Singer David Byrne and a group of international musicians perform songs from the hit Broadway musical “American Utopia.”

I’m going to keep this brief as David Byrne’s American Utopia really speaks for itself. Earlier this year we had a recording of Hamilton and now we have one of American Utopia! I really want to point out that it was a very clever idea that combine both Spike Lee with his direction and mix with it David Byrne, the end result is quite beautiful. Spike Lee makes sure to capture everything and when I mean everything I mean everything, from the movement of the performers, to the beautiful and powerful music it’s truly an amazing performance. The “say his or her’s name” segment is my absolute favorite it’s a huge reflection on current events and really makes sure to tell the viewer on why it’s important. What I absolutely love about this is that it delivers powerful messages through the music, it doesn’t need a lot of dialogue it shows and tells and that is a truly fantastic way of showing your message. I said in my Hamilton review that the running time went by extremely quick and didn’t feel like a very long movie, well this is the exact same case here with American Utopia. Even though it has a running time of 2 hours and 15th minutes it goes by quickly, it’s mostly due to the performance pulling the viewer into it, you feel like your sitting there watching it in person having a blast. Speaking of having a blast this performance is a blast, another thing I absolutely love is how American Utopia combines both fun and meaningful moments, neither of them out balances the other it truly is mesmerizing! Overall American Utopia is fantastic truly one of the highlights of the year that I recommend!!

10/10 A+

Valley Girl (2020)

Set to a new wave ’80s soundtrack, a pair of young lovers from different backgrounds defy their parents and friends to stay together. A musical adaptation of the 1983 film.

Not going to lie this really surprised me, I completely understand why someone would not like this movie like at all. It’s a remake of a beloved film, however I just couldn’t help but like this one. Anyway first a bit of backstory with this movie, so it was originally supposed to be released in June 2018 however the controversy with Logan Paul happened you know the Suicide Forest video where he filmed a dead body. So it was shelved for two years, anyway let’s talk about the movie. I thought the cast overall was pretty great Jessica Roth being the highlight, she did great with the songs and brought a lot of energy to the movie as well. Now let’s talk about the Elephant in the room Logan Paul, I have to be honest here….he wasn’t that bad? I believe it’s mainly due to him playing the asshole character which fits him pretty well, had it been any other role I think he would have done a terrible job. The songs were overall pretty great, some were definitely better than others, some singing voices could have used a much bigger improvement while others stole the show like Jessica Roth’s who was easily the best out of the bunch. As much as I found this movie to be pretty solid, I do find it to be a very pointless remake. It’s one of those remakes that just kind of happened but it’s not hurting anybody, overall it’s a decent movie. There’s a lot of fun and it definitely has the energy, it’s definitely not as good as the original but that’s to be expected.

7/10 B

Cats (2019)

A tribe of cats called the Jellicles must decide yearly which one will ascend to the Heaviside Layer and come back to a new Jellicle life.

The very fact this movie came out in 2019 is absolutely unbelievable, you would think by now they would put a lot of effort into something like this but nope!!! The best way to describe Cats is…imagine someone or a group of people  taking several different types of drugs all at once, now imagine that same person or people actually trying to write a script, direct a movie and do the CGI that’s how you get this movie. I’m going to be honest here when the first trailer came out I was sort of excited for it, I loved Les Miserbales which is by the same director Tom Hooper so I thought “maybe this could be good.” The main problem right off the bat is how horrifying the cats actually look, it’s nightmare fuel and not in a good way. The acting is terrible as well as the songs, outside of Taylor Swift (who’s not even in the movie for that long I believe it’s 5-7 minutes which really doesn’t matter at one point) everyone else just feels miserable, but oh god the writing don’t even get me started…it’s quite honestly some of the worst I’ve heard in 2019, the jokes it tries to pull off are terrible, It’s incredible how something this terrible and so messy could exist. I went into this movie with open mind hoping that maybe some people overreacted but this is no overreaction, this is downright terrible and definitely bottom of the barrel material. 

Disgrace To Cinema F