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There’s a lot of risk that goes into revisiting an idea long after the fact. Adding to a cinematic universe that has been both unchanged and largely beloved for decades is a demanding prospect. To be able to do justice to the original and satisfy its acolytes while also telling a story that feels both new and necessary, well … that’s a real challenge.

For example: Ridley Scott’s 1982 film “Blade Runner” is one of the most cherished sci-fi films in movie history. If you’re going to make a sequel to THAT film – one that in many ways essentially served as the model for the genre for 30-plus years – you better be damn sure you get it right.

“Blade Runner 2049” gets it right.

Published in Movies
Wednesday, 04 October 2017 10:28

‘Flatliners’ dead on arrival

Hollywood’s current tendency toward remakes and reboots of preexisting properties isn’t always a bad thing. Sometimes, the right filmmaking team can take an older idea and breathe new life into it, creating something that both honors the source material and brings something uniquely its own to the table. The end result can be a really enjoyable movie.

Other times, a filmmaking team can completely miss whatever it was that made a property engaging in the first place and create something that is utterly devoid of anything remotely resembling value – entertainment or otherwise. That end result can be a truly terrible movie.

A movie like “Flatliners.”

Published in Movies
Friday, 29 September 2017 09:45

'American Made' flies high

Are we running out of movie stars?

One of the unanticipated side effects of the current trend toward blockbuster franchise building is a sense of interchangeability with regards to the actors. That’s not to say there aren’t gifted actors floating around in spandex or grittily shooting bad guys; there certainly are. It just doesn’t matter as much anymore which specific gifted actor it might be. These films are about the property, not the performer.

Published in Movies
Thursday, 28 September 2017 11:37

'Gerald's Game' well worth playing

We’re in the midst of a Stephen King moment.

If it seems like the master of horror has achieved a sort of pop culture ubiquity recently, well … that’s because he has. Big-screen cinematic projects (“IT,” “The Dark Tower”) and television series (“Mr. Mercedes,” “11/22/63,” “The Mist,” “Under the Dome”) have been abundant over the past couple of years, but the latest new offering lands somewhere in the middle.

Published in Movies
Wednesday, 27 September 2017 10:43

‘Friend Request’ should not be accepted

As much as we might like to believe that the movie business is about creating quality entertainment for audiences, the reality is right there in the term – it’s a business. With very few exceptions, it’s all about that sweet, sweet box office cash.

Published in Movies

Stylish action sequel doesn’t quite measure up to its predecessor

Published in Movies
Wednesday, 20 September 2017 11:23

The mainstreamed madness of ‘mother!’

Aronofsky’s latest a bizarre, unsettling allegory

Published in Movies
Wednesday, 20 September 2017 11:18

A few fine films for fall 2017

So I’m a little late with this year’s fall movie preview. What can I say? Things have been busy.

Published in Cover Story
Thursday, 07 September 2017 08:57

Pennywise, pound terrifying – ‘IT’

Stephen King is one of the best-selling, most-celebrated novelists of his generation. He’s written dozens of books over the past few decades; all have their merits, but there are a few that have achieved a sort of general consensus as the best of the best.

Published in Movies
Wednesday, 06 September 2017 12:42

Electric Goonaloo - 'Goon: Last of the Enforcers'

Low expectations can be a gift when it comes to movies. When you don’t have a lot of hope for a film, your odds of disappointment are greatly reduced and there’s room for you to occasionally be pleasantly surprised.

Published in Movies
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