Like I said In my review for Blade Of The 47 Ronin who honestly asked for this? R.I.P.D is yet another movie from 2013 where it was a critically and financial failure, the moment it came out audiences already moved on and it was quickly forgotten about. To be absolutely fair a sequel was announced a little after the movie released so I guess rather than cancel it they turned into a prequel which I’m assuming because Ryan Reynolds or Jeff Bridges didn’t want to return (rightfully so), R.I.P.D.: Rise Of The Damned is ultimately a terrible western movie with horrible acting, writing, action scenes and costumes. It’s absolutely painful to sit through and the characters are very poorly written. If you thought the characters from the first movie were horribly written wait until you take a gander at these ones, the humor is once again not funny there’s just no personality to the movie at all and is nothing but short of a horrible idea that somehow didn’t get left in the concept stage. I genuinely have no idea what on earth they were trying to go for here, if it was to make a prequel to R.I.P.D. they definitely failed to do that as it fails to really tell the backstory in a compelling way, if they wanted to make some western movie well they got some elements right but not in a way that’s any good. I mean sure we get to learn about Roy who was played by Jeff Bridges in the first movie and is played by Jeffery Donovan in this one. But much like in the other movie Roy isn’t interesting, heck I would argue Roy is less interesting in this one mainly due to him being a very typical western movie cliche hero in this one. In the first movie at least they tried to give him some personality (Jeff Bridges made the performance at least a bit unintentionally funny) with this movie you get nothing but a dreadfully told backstory that you are going to forget about 15 minutes after you watch it.
R.I.P.D.: Rise Of The Damned is available on all VOD platforms.
Dear Zoe is an unfortunate case of having great idea but not doing nearly enough with them, Sadie Sink gives a fantastic performance that really shows why she’s one of the most interesting new actresses, Theo Rossi isn’t too bad either he gives a decent performance that does bring heart into the movie. The father and daughter bond that Nick (Theo Rossi) and Tess (Sadie Sink) have really works and actually leads to some emotional moments. What holds the movie back is it not elaborating on it’s themes, the main theme is grief and trauma having to move on from an accident. Which in this case is Tess trying to cope with losing her little sister Zoe (Mackenzie Noel Rusiewicz) who was hit by a car on 9/11. The movie is also a coming of age story unfortunately not a very special one, the movie is very surface level when it comes to grief, it shows flashbacks and eventually what led up to Zoe’s death but that’s really about it. It’s very bare bones storytelling that has a script that really doesn’t add anything to the conversation, there’s plenty of films out there about healing that go in far more depth than this one. Sink and Rossi are able to nail down the many emotions the movie has, but unfortunately when it comes to everyone else there is so much lacking. We aren’t given a whole lot about Jimmy (Kweku Collins) other than his mother died, the movie clearly wants to connect Jimmy and Tess together but the chemistry is just not there. Collins really tries his hardest with the script he’s given but unfortunately he’s restricted to being a love interest which leads to a lot of young adult romance cliches. Overall Dear Zoe is disappointing, there was a lot of potential here to tell such an emotional and powerful story, but the lack of depth of the themes and characters really hold this back from being anything other than a below average coming of age story.
We are almost at the end of 2022 which is sort of crazy to think about, it’s been such a spectacular year for film and it’s only going to get even better from here! Let’s start with a movie I saw back in March at SXSW that is quite disturbing.
God’s Country mainly works due to Thandiwe Newton’s performance that is very raw and really keeps the interest of the viewer, the photography of the setting is truly beautiful especially when combined with the atmosphere. Speaking of which the film absolutely nails the atmosphere on so many levels, the film does take it’s time to get going but once it does it actually explores a few themes such as racism. Which the film does a pretty solid job in despite feeling a bit unexplored at times, which the movie makes up for with very engaging writing that really builds the characters with a lot of personal moments between one another. There’s a lot here that is very striking and really adds to the film’s overall atmosphere that eventually leads to a very strong third act. Once again Newton is truly what makes the film shine, just watching her character interact with everyone else is really investing and gives the film it’s personality that is very memorable after watching.
September flew by pretty quickly so now we are reaching the home stretch! October is my favorite month of the year and like previous years this month has a lot of good stuff to look forward to! As usual I’ll go over the movies I’ve already seen that I recommend and then we will get into the list.
Piggy – October 7th (Theaters I believe) and October 14th (VOD) – A Disturbing little movie Spanish and French horror movie that I saw back at Sundance 2022, it has some pretty neat commentary on bullying and some effective atmosphere!
Bitch Ass – October 14th (VOD) – Bitch Ass is one of those it’s so bad it’s hilarious movies, I gave it a 6/10 simply because I had such a fun time with it because it understands how to have fun. It’s a fun little slasher movie that I recommend watching with friends.
Slash/Back – October 21st (VOD) A simple but decent little sci-fi movie it has a lot of Attack The Block vibes to it so this is one to check out if you liked that one.
Now on to the list!
29. Bring It On: Cheer Or Die – October 8th (Syfy Channel) – Yes you read that right the Bring It On series is taking a new direction and going into the horror genre. This will be the seventh installment in the series (I have yet to see any but the first movie might check the series out this week) I don’t expect this movie to be good since it is going to premiere on the Syfy channel, but this is a case of my curiosity being very interested.
28. Spirit Of Halloween: The Movie – October 11th (VOD) – I appreciate these types of horror movies still being a thing, you know the kid friendly horror (although it is rated PG-13 the trailer has a Goosebumps like feel to it) I’m also a bit interested to see how they use the premise!
27. Old Man – October 14th (VOD)
26. Black Adam – October 21st (Theaters) – The only reason why I’m excited is because I like the whole premise of a film focusing on an Anti-Hero and fighting the heroes, the very least I hope Black Adam is a fun time as a lot of the comic book films this year have been a mess in terms of quality.
25. Rosaline – October 14th (Hulu)
24. Lyle Lyle Crocodile – October 7th (Theaters) – Potentially could be a lot of fun, I’m also very into the idea of Shawn Mendes voicing a crocodile.
23. Mr. Harrigan’s Phone – October 5th (Netflix) – Another Stephen King adaption, hopefully this one is better than the last one we got this year (Firestarter 2022)
22. Werewolf By Night – October 7th (Disney+) – One of the few things Marvel has coming up that I’m actually interested in, the trailer was a lot of fun and felt a bit campy here’s to hoping the same can be said for the movie.
21. Dark Glasses – October 13th (Shudder)
20. Wendell & Wild – October 28th (Netflix)
19. Run Sweetheart Run – October 28th (Amazon Prime Video)
18. Significant Other – October 7th (Paramount+) – Maika Monroe has already hit it out of the park with Watcher which released a back in June, the trailer seems promising with this one!
17. Mortal Kombat Legends: Snow Blind – October 11th (VOD) – So far the animated Mortal Kombat movies have been quite fun Scorpion’s Revenge (2020) was a very solid film that did the franchise justice and Battle Of The Realms (2021) while not as good as the previous movie it was still a solid fun time! Here’s hoping Snow Blind is just as good.
16. God’s Country – October 14th (VOD)
15. Till – October 14th (Theaters) – There’s been a lot of talk about Danielle Deadwyler’s performance, the film had it’s first reactions over the weekend and while the movie itself is apparently great but is on the weak side at times Deadwyler’s performance is apparently fantastic. Which makes me all the more excited.
14. Holy Spider – October 28th (Theaters)
13. Stars At Noon – October 14th (Theaters and VOD platforms) – Haven’t heard the best things about this movie but between Claire Denis and Margaret Qualley I can’t help but be excited for this one.
12. The Good Nurse – October 26th (Netflix)
11. Halloween Ends – October 14th (Theaters and Peacock) – I’m one of those people who loved Halloween Kills so I’m pretty excited for Halloween Ends, it will be interesting to see how the film closes the whole Laurie Strode and Michael Myers chapter!
10. V/H/S/99 – October 20th (Shudder) – After a really solid sequel from last year (V/H/S/94) I’m very interested to see how this one will be, as long as it stays away from being like VHS Viral this should be great.
9. Terrifier 2 – October 6th (Theaters) – A sequel that I’ve been waiting for awhile now, early reactions say it’s just as good if not better than the first movie!
8. Armageddon Time – October 28th (Theaters) – Between the cast, James Gray and the trailer there is so much to look forward to with this film.
7. All Quiet On The Western Front – October 28th (Netflix)
6. The Banshees Of Inisherin – October 21st (Theaters)
5. Hellraiser – October 7th (Hulu) – After the first reactions which came out recently, I’m very excited for this one! It looks like a breath of fresh air for the series that it most definitely needs.
4. Aftersun – October 21st (Theaters)
3. Decision To Leave – October 14th (Theaters)
2. Triangle Of Sadness – October 7th (Theaters)
1. TAR – October 7th (Theaters)…..just looks absolutely stunning!!
For a film about a talking shell wearing a pair of shoes Marcel The Shell With Shoes On is one of the most beautiful and meaningful films I’ve seen so far this year. There’s so many themes that this film talks about in 89 minutes that truly feel impactful to the viewer. For starters Jenny Slate as Marcel is truly brilliant the amount of heart and soul she put into the performance is truly inspiring and captures a very human as well, the filming combined with the stop motion is masterful with every sense of the word. It’s absolutely stunning and really connects the real world setting with Marcel brilliantly, then there’s the themes such as a ton of family themes which lead to some very touching moments that are very relatable to viewer. There’s the theme of loneliness living in a huge world looking for the people that you love in this case Marcel is looking for his family. The theme of feeling small is also present one that can feel overwhelming, we all live in a huge world beyond our comprehension which is why some people rightfully want to feel big and explore the world, that’s what Marcel sets out to do in the film. There’s also the theme of finding oneself through a journey you often find out new things about yourself and that’s explored perfectly here, at the end of Marcel’s journey there’s a completely touching ending that Marcel reflects on and learns so much about himself. This is all backed up from the flawless script that will make you both cry and put a smile on your face, it’s such a strong and diverse of emotions type of script that really captures what the viewer could be going through. Overall Marcel The Shell With Shoes on is a powerful film that truly needs to be seen, it’s a very moving film that you will absolutely love.
Marcel The Shell With Shoes On is available on all VOD platforms.
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.
Mrs. Harris Goes To Paris is simplistic yet still really interesting and quite great at the same time, it’s a super sweet and wholesome movie that establishes it’s goal right from the start that being to fall in love with the film. Lesley Manville in the leading role is spectacular, she’s very fitting in her role and truly knocks it out of the park as the leading role. Isabelle Huppert is also quite fantastic here as well, like Manville she completely steals every scene she’s in and truly goes all out in the role. The writing is simple yet very charming, the film really shows the beauty of being simplistic it particularly works here mainly due to the cast and the film itself coming together to create something wholesome. The costume design combined with the cinematography has a lot to look at that really captures the viewer’s eye and it’s the little details that make the film go the extra mile as well. Mrs. Harris Goes To Paris might not break any new ground but it doesn’t have to, it’s a simple and easy watch that’s genuinely charming.
Mrs. Harris Goes To Paris is available on all VOD Platforms.
I’ve said this multiple times already but my issue with a lot of the modern found footage horror genre is they take an eternity to get to the main point of the movie. That’s sadly the case here with The Andy Baker Tape, the main leads Bret Lada and Dustin Fontaine are at least engaging and actually do a far better job than you would expect. They both clearly seem like they are having the time of their lives with this movie so at least the passion is there, the plot itself just takes way too long to get going and the horror elements actually end up weakening the movie quite a bit. All that happens is Andy ends up being creepy midway through the movie and from there it’s quite predictable, I like the whole premise of “certain character becomes odd” but it’s down in such a bare bones way that’s been done to death numerous times already. Overall The Andy Baker Tape is definitely not bad and gets points for a strong start, likable leads and decent filming but ultimately doesn’t have anything new to add to a very crowded subgenre.
The Andy Baker Tape is available on the Terror Channel and will be released on all VOD Platforms August 12th.
Bring Him Back Dead is a very nothing special about it low budget action movie, there’s some fine enough action scenes that are at least fun. But that’s all there really is, the acting isn’t as bad as you would expect but it just mainly comes down to “seen that and it’s been done better” really not a whole lot here.
Bring Him Back Dead is available tomorrow on all VOD Platforms.