October 30, 2021
October 29, 2021
Of course, pandemic delays have affected most recent Hollywood releases, but Last Night in Soho has finally been released, and I’m happy to say I thoroughly enjoyed it. I know, I usually leave my verdict until the end, but I had such a good time last night with Last Night that I had to throw that out there at the start.
I will say this: if you haven’t seen a trailer yet, don’t. Last Night in Soho is better seen unspoiled in any way, so the less footage you see beforehand, the better. To give a brief plot teaser: Thomasin McKenzie plays Ellie Turner, a young fashion student who moves to London for school, and it isn’t long before she starts seeing nighttime visions of Sandie, a young singer from the 1960s.
October 21, 2021
The world of Frank Herbert’s Dune is so complicated and detailed, it’s quite a feat to even attempt a film adaptation. David Lynch’s 1984 movie worked for some and not for others, but Denis Villeneuve comes with a different approach: his Dune adapts roughly half of the original 1965 novel, which is both its strongest success and biggest disappointment.
October 18, 2021
Michael Myers is on a rampage in Halloween Kills, the (unsurprisingly divisive) latest entry in the long-running Halloween franchise. Of course, such a jam-packed film evokes more thoughts that could fill a page, so below are some thoughts I had that didn’t fit into my review — and keep in mind, there are major spoilers ahead.
October 16, 2021
“The thirteen tracks which you are about to hear were long ago hidden away, deemed too grotesque for public consumption by the American recording industry. Recently, however, they were unearthed by the homicide unit of the L.A.P.D. These tracks would soon gain infamy as key evidence; allegedly linking Ice Nine Kills frontman, Spencer Charnas, to the brutal slaying of his 28-year old fiancé. Though the original title of this disturbing collection of songs remains unknown, these cuts would forever be remembered as…Welcome to Horrorwood.”
After a series of singles, horror-themed heavy metal band Ice Nine Kills has released a brand-new album (and their first sequel!), Welcome to Horrorwood. I reviewed their first single from the album when it was released earlier this year, and while the singles that followed were in a similar vein, I was delighted to find that the complete album included some fantastic songs I hadn’t previously heard.
Continuing the tradition began by Horrorwood’s predecessor The Silver Scream, each track off of Horrorwood was inspired in some way, either lyrically, musically or both, by a classic horror film. Some of them are more obvious — “The Shower Scene” takes cues from Psycho, for example — and some references are more deep-cut.
October 14, 2021
Halloween Kills picks up mere minutes after the conclusion of 2018’s Halloween, with Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis), her daughter Karen (Judy Greer) and granddaughter Allyson (Andi Matichak) leaving infamous serial killer Michael Myers for dead. This is a slasher movie, though, so of course Michael escapes, and violence ensues.
October 13, 2021
October 12, 2021
October 8, 2021
While traditionally action movies, each James Bond film has their own tropes that they typically adhere to. 007 meets a beautiful woman (“Bond girls” no longer) who has some secretive tie to the film’s villain. The aforementioned villain is never alone — he always has a nefarious henchman who does his dirty work before being axed by Bond in a completely satisfying way.
No Time to Die, Daniel Craig’s last outing as the MI6 super spy, is not immune to these tropes, and it definitely knows it. In fact, it also knows that this is the last time Craig will inhabit the role, so it decides to take its sweet time with seeing him off — 2 hours and 43 minutes of time, in fact. This makes it the longest Bond film in history, but the runtime surprisingly isn’t too much of an issue. The story and pacing are rapidly-paced enough so that something is always happening, and the concept of boredom isn’t allowed to exist.
Five years after Bond’s last outing, Spectre, he’s retired from the espionage game, but as is with any retired action hero, just when he thought he was out, something happens to pull him back in. This time it’s a (surprisingly timely) scheme by Lyutsifer Safin (Rami Malek), a rather fascinating character who considers himself to be a hero akin to Bond — albeit in his own twisted way.
October 1, 2021
It’s always nice when a studio sees what works with their first film, and vastly improves on those measures in the sequel. 2018’s Venom, while an undisputed box office hit, was not a critical darling, but it was a comic book movie so a sequel was inevitable.
After numerous pandemic-related delays, Venom: Let There Be Carnage has finally arrived. Tom Hardy returns as journalist Eddie Brock, who co-exists with the alien symbiote Venom (also voiced by Hardy). The pair are having some domestic issues, and it doesn’t help when serial killer Cletus Kasady (Woody Harrelson) breaks out of prison with a killer symbiote of his own to cause some destruction. Let there be Carnage, indeed.
I’ve talked before about the “bigger and better” approach that most sequels strive for, and I can confidently say that Venom succeeds in both. Not only is the threat of Let There Be Carnage greater and more personal than the first film, but the stakes are higher, the action scenes are more ambitious, and the cast have clearly settled into their roles. It had a lot going for it.