Discovering good movies, one bad movie at a time

Every week this summer, we’ll be taking an historical tour of the Hollywood blockbuster by examining an older film that is in some way a spiritual precursor to one of the weekend’s wide releases. This week: if we’re being classy about it, overt Twilight knock-off The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones could be more generously thought of as a new entry in that most modern of fantasy subgenres, in which […]

It is a truth undeniable that Hellboy II: The Golden Army does not enjoy a particularly robust and tight story; it might not be that much of a mistake, in fact, to claim that its story is a confusing mess. If that’s the sort of thing that’s going to bother you no matter what, then I respect your position, and I’ll do nothing to convince you that you should like […]

If you’ve seen Stranger Things or the recently released zeitgeist-embracing adventure The Kid Who Would Be King, you know there’s no shortage of nostalgia for the decades in which most of the folks reading this grew up. The 1980s and ’90s are en vogue and ready to transport you back to your Topanga poster-covered walls of your bedroom. Or whomever you were into at the time. Maybe it was just […]

I like Guillermo del Toro quite a lot, and I like Jean-Pierre Jeunet a lot, and I like them for very similar reasons – they both make over-saturated movies dominated by production design and fanciful rather than realistic visual effects – and I still would never, ever pretend that I wanted to see a film that combined their two styles. But here we are, and here’s The Shape of Water, […]

This month’s Team Top 10 11 at The Film Experience, perfectly (if accidentally) timed for the recent Cannes win of Blue Is the Warmest Color, is a list of the best comic book/comic strip adaptations ever filmed. As distinct from the best superhero movies, which means something a little bit different. I was rather badly off-consensus with this one, though the final list is difficult to find fault with (outside […]

The superhero sequel is a peculiar beast. It is the nature of the sequel to be a chancy proposition, artistically at least: most stories really actually don’t need the extra space to be told, and cinema history is littered with sequels that can’t do better than feebly retread the same plot and conflicts as the original movie, or else strain so hard to find a new direction that they completely […]

I’m currently putting together a list of the 100 best movies from 2000-2009, like everybody else has already done; but dammit, the Aughts aren’t even cold in their grave, let’s wait a teeny bit before starting the lists already. Anyway, you can consider this the first salvo in my Decade-In-Review extravaganza: see, I’ve been doing this proper-like, and trying to re-watch every single picture I put on my list (and […]

Here are the facts: Peter Schneider, the President of Feature Animation at Walt Disney Pictures since 1985, and therefore the man who oversaw and to some extent engineered the successful execution of the one-film-per-year plan, was promoted to being president of the whole film division of the Walt Disney Company in 1999. At that time, he was succeeded by Thomas Schumacher, producer of The Rescuers Down Under and executive producer […]

It is but one week from tonight that the Oscars will be handed out, though by that point I imagine that only a handful of people will actually care, besides the nominees themselves. But this is not the place for me to complain and whine about the low quality of the Academy’s choices this year. This is just the cursory and grumpy predictions for what I expect will win. Best […]

It had been my intention to see a movie today and review it – you know, like I do on this movie review blog of mine. The thing is, I’ve got a cold that just will not be ignored, and so I’m allowing laziness to be the better part of valor. A quick post, and then to bed! Anyway, I’m still sore over the Worst Oscar Slate In Years (okay, […]

Nominations! Wow, they sure loved the hell out of The Reader. I’m impressed, though – I knew the Oscars were going to be boring this year, but I didn’t realise they were going to be boring and shitty. The good: Melissa Leo in for Best Actress, Richard Jenkins for Best Actor, In Bruges for Original Screenplay (actually, Original Screenplay as a whole is pretty good), Hellboy II for Makeup The […]

At first I wasn’t going to do this, but I’m ultimately a sucker for the glitziness of Teh Movies. So here are my predictions for the Oscar nominations tomorrow morning. I have decided to eschew all but a little commentary, mostly on the grounds that I haven’t been this bored by the Oscar race in all the years that I’ve been watching the Oscars. Incidentally, the fact that I’m predicting […]