If you have finished watching the film Muriel's Wedding (1994) 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 →
Breakfast at Tiffany's
John Carney's new drama is just one of a diverse collection of features at this year's Toronto International Film Festival.
This piece was written during the 2023 WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes. Without the labor of the writers and actors currently on strike, the works being covered here wouldn't exist.
Irish filmmaker John Carney made his big breakthrough in 2007 with Once, a film focused on the redemptive power of music and its ability to bring people, whether they are strangers or family, together in the pursuit of creating something that allows them to give voice to their once-buried hopes and desires. This was followed by Begin Again (2013), a film focused on the redemptive power of music and its ability to bring people, whether they are strangers or family, together in the pursuit of creating something that allows them to give voice to their once-buried hopes and desires. After that came Sing Street (2016), a film focused on the redemptive power of music and its ability to bring people, whether they are strangers or family, together in the pursuit of creating something that allows them to give voice to their once-buried hopes and desires. Continue Reading →
A Field in England
This piece was written during the 2023 WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes. Without the labor of the writers and actors currently on strike, the movies being covered here wouldn't exist. Continue Reading →
For decades, the great American institution of summer camp has been fodder for cinema, and for good reason. A group of hormonal teenagers put together in an artificial environment is the perfect recipe for drama, with the gorgeous backdrop of the outdoors. Continue Reading →
There’s something to be said for a ramshackle film that delights in itself and doesn’t take anything especially seriously. Unfortunately, what a filmmaker and their fans find fun may read as piffle or drudgery to less dialed-in audiences. Case in point: Kaboom. Continue Reading →
The Wedding Singer
Though I had in my younger days a pretty low bar as to what funny meant, Adam Sandler was quickly filed under “not for me.” I could take him in bite-sized portions on Saturday Night Live, but his brand of aggressive man-child comedy was far harder to take in feature-length films, particularly when quoted or imitated ad infinitum by men who weren’t professional comedians. To say that I greeted the announcement that he was cast as the leading man in the romantic comedy The Wedding Singer with skepticism would have been an understatement; I fully expected that it would be a “romantic comedy” made strictly for the guys, where the leading man would have to change in no appreciable way to get his co-star to fall madly in love with him. Continue Reading →
Jabberwocky, Terry Gilliam’s solo directorial debut, is a fractured fairy tale of sorts that remains as bizarre and unique today as when it first hit theaters in 1977. It is ostensibly a PG-rated fantasy with all the elements one might associate with such a prospect. There’s (Spoiler Alert) a stalwart hero, a beautiful princess, a fearsome beast, a kingdom in peril, and a happy ending. However, it skews them in strange and occasionally gruesome ways until none plays out as expected. Although admittedly uneven in parts, the result is an undeniably entertaining and occasionally outrageous work. It serves as an impressively formed and executed debut of one of the era’s more compelling and unusual filmmaking voices. Continue Reading →
Speak No Evil
(This review is part of our coverage of the 2022 Sundance Festival) Continue Reading →
Certain movies have a kind of insubstantial quality to them. They aren’t poorly made or badly acted but they nonetheless feel feather-light, as though they barely existed moments after you turn off the credits. Amelia is such a film. Continue Reading →
Gabriela Cowperthwaite’s Our Friend stumbles from a surfeit of generosity. It’s perhaps inevitable given the scope of its approach. Adapted by screenwriter Brad Ingelsby from Matt Teague’s 2013 Esquire feature, the cancer drama vainly juggles the perspectives of three close-knit friends (Matt, Dane, and Nicole) as they weather the effects and repercussions of Nicole’s (Dakota Johnson) terminal cancer. Continue Reading →