The Devil All the Time and all the images you see in this review are owned by Netflix
Directed by Antonio Campos
It looks like Warner Bros non-stop protestations that movies and movie theaters are back has failed to materialize as the world is still ravaged by a pandemic and studios are still shy about putting anything out to overwhelmingly empty theaters. I guess it means we’re going back to the Netflix well once again which is perfectly fine as we ALL need to do our part to keep people safe, and they’ve been putting out a steady stream of original movies so I’m pretty much spoiled for choice until the world decides to reopen again. So with the breadth of Netflix’s catalog in front of me, which one do I choose? Well it was either Cuties or the new movie with Robert Pattinson, and as much as I hear good things about Cuties (and hear bad things from the absolute WORST people about it), I had to stick with my main man Robbie P and see what he’s up to! Does this movie satiate the listless masses for another week of perpetual lockdown, or does the dour tone of this movie hit a bit TOO close to home right now? Let’s find out!!
Arvin Russell (Tom Holland) is your typical sweet kid from the country with a definite chip on his shoulder. He has a strong sense of right and wrong, but given enough of a push he can be convinced to take serious action against those who slighted him and his family. Perhaps he got that mean streak in him when he was a kid (Michael Banks) and his father (Bill Skarsgård) used to do the same thing. Perhaps it has to do with his mother (Haley Bennett) who died of cancer when he was young and the… interesting actions his father took during that time. Still, he doesn’t have much to complain about considering he lives with his loving grandma (Kristin Griffith) and… let’s go with half-sister Lenora (Eliza Scanlen) and leave it at that. To get into the specifics there is something I’ll leave the movie to explain, but needless to say that things are pretty good for him, and as long as they aren’t surrounded by a bunch of terrible people to set Arvin off, things will go just fine for them! Well I hate to break it to you, but there are some bad people in this little town and Arvin is stuck right in the middle; between the devils all around him and the devils within himself. Does the world push Arvin to take drastic measures to restore order in the face of injustice, and can one man survive in a world full of bad people? What will Arvin lose of himself in this story of pain, loss, and vengeance, and is there any sort of light at the end of the tunnel once he’s found the justice he seeks? This sounds like a superhero origin story, though PROBABLY not the one that Holland usually plays.
Alice Through the Looking Glass and all the images you see in this review are owned by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Directed by James Bobin
A sequel to a movie six years after everyone stopped caring about it! THAT’S never gone wrong, am I right? To be fair to Disney, the original film did make an astonishing amount of money (one BILLION worldwide) but this feels way too late to capitalize on whatever moment that first movie had. Not only that, but it was also one of the early 3D films which I’m sure boosted the ticket sales, yet now we’re at a point where people are just sick of the gimmick, so it doesn’t even have THAT going for it. Still, the first movie did manage to be pretty decent and the trailers for this looked very creative to say the least. Can this manage to be a damn fine sequel that just needed a little extra time to fully come together, or is this a naked cash grab for everyone involved? Let’s find out!!
The movie picks up three years after the first movie where Alice (Mia Wasikowska) has spent the intervening time traveling the world as a sea captain for Ascot family’s trading company (I think). She returns to England at the start of the movie to see her mother (Lindsay Duncan) and plan the next trip with the company. Unfortunately, the Ascot patriarch has died since she last returned and the one in charge of the company is his son Hamish (Leo Bill) who you may recall was set to be Alice’s husband in the first movie which didn’t end up panning out. Now that this new guy is in charge (and he has a wounded ego) Alice is not only no longer employed as a sea captain, but for some reason is given an ultimatum to either sell her father’s boat or risk losing her mother’s house. It gets worse when you find out that the mother has been working behind her back to make sure she gets fired so that she would have no choice but to “settle down” as all proper ladies do. Well I’d say THAT’S enough stuff to stress over to make a trip to Wonderland seem like a wondrous vacation, right? She gets led to the titular looking glass by the butterfly Absolem (Alan Rickman) and eventually finds the Mad Hatter (Johnny Depp) on the other side who is slowly dying and not quite so delightfully mad. Apparently he found a modicum of proof that his family is still alive but no one else believes him so he’s going to slowly die of depression… I guess. Alice has no choice but to go back in time to save the Hatter’s family from the Jaberwacki and has to face off against Time himself (Sacha Baron Cohen) to get that ability. Will she be able to save the Hatter from his battle with depression? What will she learn as she travels back to the glory days of Wonderland, and what must she risk in order to get the opportunity to do so? Does anyone else notice that its’ a lot brighter this time around?
Crimson Peak and all the images you see in this review are owned by Universal Pictures
Directed by Guillermo del Toro
Well at least SOMEONE decided to release a horror movie in October! Seriously, why don’t we get horror movies during Spooky Month anymore? Is it too obvious or something? Well NOTHING’S too obvious for good old Guillermo Del Toro who’s bringing us a good old late Victorian era Haunted House feature that might as well come straight from Hammer Studios! Can his Spook House thriller bring some life back to the genre which has been surviving off of found footage scraps for years now, or is he going to indulge way too much in what he loves to see to the point that he ends up only appealing to a niche audience with his big budget feature? Let’s find out!!
The movie is about Edith Cushing (Mia Wasikowska), an aspiring writer of ghost stories who’s having trouble getting her magnum opus published. Despite being the daughter of a rather wealthy contractor in New York city with plenty of connections, no one seems interested in selling a ghost story written by a female and would rather have her write some tween love story. I guess ghosts are next on the list for Twilight-ification (if they haven’t been already) but Edith is not willing to compromise on her vision, especially because it comes from a very personal place. Edith’s mother died when she was fairly young and a couple of days later she was visited by her ghosts. Now it doesn’t seem like Edith has seen a ghost since then, but that night has stuck with her since then, especially considering that her Ghost Mom could see the future and warned her to be wary of CRIMSON PEAK!! While struggling with this, her father is visited by a British Baronet named Thomas Sharpe (Tom Hiddleston) who’s trying to get her father to invest in his clay extraction machine while also getting moon eyes for the lovely Edith. He’s not alone on his journey however and has come to America with his sister Lucille (Jessica Chastain) but all she seems interested in is standing off to the side and giving off bad vibes. This doesn’t deter the budding romance between Edith and Thomas however and after some horrifying event befalls the young Edith, she leaves the United States and is whisked away by her knight in shining armor to be his bride. Once at the family home though, it’s clear that there’s MUCH more going on than Thomas led on during their courtship which I think was about a month. What secrets does the rickety manor have that Thomas and Lucille are trying to hide? Will Edith’s power to see ghosts come in handy or be a curse that slowly drives her mad? If we can’t have Silent Hills, is this at least a decent replacement!?
Wow. It must be a stretch for Shia LaBeouf to play a dumbass kid who gets in way over his head, right? Lawless stars him as one of three brothers who run a moonshining trade in rural Virgina during Prohibition, and it was the last mainstream film he’s been associated with. Sure, he’s in a Lars Von Trier movie that’s coming out soon, but I doubt that’s gonna be in your local multiplex if you see what I’m getting at. Despite his toxic public persona, he has been able to prove himself as an actor on a few occasions, but it’s gone far past the point where anyone want to give him the benefit of the doubt anymore. All that said; is Lawless another example of him showing off his acting chops, or is it yet another chance for him to make a complete ass of himself? There’s only one way to find out, and that’s to KEEP ON READING!!!