If you have finished watching the film Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953) and are looking for other movies like it, here is a list of options to consider.
The Trolls movies continue to indulge in their best and worst impulses in a third installment.
The poster for this past summer's R-rated comedy No Hard Feelings had a reasonably clever tagline to explain the strained dynamic between the film's two leads. Against an image of Jennifer Lawrence squeezing Andrew Barth Feldman's cheeks, a single word is placed on top of each person's face: "Pretty" and "Awkward." Nothing revolutionary in design, but it gets the job done. Best of all, that tagline also makes for an apt descriptor for Trolls Band Together.
The third entry in the Trolls trilogy (based on the popular 80s dolls), Trolls Band Together does indeed live up to the phrase “Pretty. Awkward.” The animators at DreamWorks keep coming up with gorgeous-looking environments for the titular critters to inhabit that look like they emerged from the wreckage of a craft store explosion. Unfortunately, the writing remains as stilted as ever. Continue Reading →
Dicks: The Musical
The audaciously titled Dicks: The Musical comes with an equally eye-catching tagline, boasting the honor of being “A24’s first musical.” That’s bound to intrigue cinephiles everywhere. After all, not every movie studio is trendy enough to regularly sell out of logo festooned merchandise. Or even make hipster merch in the first place. Continue Reading →
Flora and Son
About 75 minutes into Flora and Son, its script veers toward the self-reflexive. “What movie are you in?” Flora (Eve Hewson) snaps. “One without you in it,” her son, Max (Orén Kinlan), replies. This sort of exchange fits holistically into writer-director John Carney’s latest. It’s self-aware, sure, but it’s not meta. Like most of the film’s writing, it is entirely transparent in its machinations, going so far as to declare them at points. Supporting characters largely function as symbols rather than people. Continue Reading →
The Little Mermaid
The spate of recent live-action Disney remakes has run the gamut in quality from pleasantly diverting (Cinderella, Pete’s Dragon) to unwatchable abominations (The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast.) Even the most well-received entries of the bunch struggle to find reasons they should exist in the first place. Rob Marshall’s The Little Mermaid is no different, but for one crucial factor that sets it apart from the rest: Halle Bailey as Ariel. Bailey is so captivating and winsome in the titular role that this remake almost feels worth it just to launch her into movie stardom. Unfortunately, sub-par CGI effects and clunky changes to Howard Ashman’s classic songs often make it feel like Bailey is left to carry the movie on the strength of her remarkable talent alone. With a shaggy runtime of two hours and fifteen minutes—a full hour longer than the original cartoon—it’s a heavy load for one performer to bear. Continue Reading →