Discovering good movies, one bad movie at a time

In fairness to Thunder Force, a high-concept science-fiction comedy vehicle for Melissa McCarthy written and directed by her husband Ben Falcone that was released as a direct-to-streaming exclusive in the first third of 2021: it is better than Superintelligence, a  high-concept science-fiction comedy vehicle for McCarthy directed (but not written) by Falcone that was released […]

The Empty Man was shot in 2017 and had to wait for years to finally come out, caught in the net of 20th Century Fox being purchased by the Walt Disney Company and thus owned by a corporation that had absolutely no idea what in Hell’s name they were supposed to do with something this […]

The simple part first: the massive, monumental beast of a comic book movie released under the gravely ponderous title Zack Snyder’s Justice League is better in basically every single way that can be quantified than just plain Justice League from 2017, which is both fundamentally the same thing and so wildly, indescribably different that it […]

Not everyone will agree with me, I know, but to my mind, 2017’s Wonder Woman sets up a pretty high bar to clear, as one of the few superhero movies of the 2010s to successfully thread the needle between “superhero comics are modern mythology, with all the gravity that entails” and “popcorn movies need to […]

The Old Guard is the the most perfectly Netflix-ey film you could hope for out of Netflix’s attempt to kick-start a superhero franchise. It is, for starters, deeply unpleasant to look at, filmed through a muddy digital veil that pushes all of the colors hard towards grey, unless the entire purpose of the scene is […]

Lord knows if “sequel” is right word to describe The Vault of Horror, a 1973 anthology film based on horror stories published in the first half of the 1950s by EC Comics. Not, as it happens, stories published in the pages of The Vault of Horror, one of the company’s three dedicated horror titles. Of […]

It is a truth that I think to be self-evident that 1972’s Tales from the Crypt is the best-known and most widely-seen of Amicus Productions’s seven horror anthology films – maybe even their best-known and most widely-seen film, period. How much of this has to do with the fact that it shares a title and […]

So help me, I really do feel sorry for The New Mutants and the poor saps who made it. If all had gone according to plan, it would have slunk into theaters in April 2018, gotten bored reviews comparing it unfavorably to Logan as an example of trying to do a different genre than action-thriller […]

I won’t go so far as to say that there’s nothing that can prepare you for Tekkonkinkreet, the 2006 film that, among its many traits, was the first significant Japanese-produced animated feature directed by a non-Japanese person (the man with that honor was Los Angeles-born Michael Arias, who got his start in visual effects and […]

The 2001 animated feature Metropolis, a science fiction parable about robots and class struggle in an incredible Art Deco super-city, has its work cut out for it twice over. First, it’s living in the shadow of that other science fiction parable about robots and class struggle in an incredible Art Deco super-city titled Metropolis, the […]

The 1983 animated feature Barefoot Gen has the bad luck to suffer from being overshadowed from two different directions. First, it’s an adaptation of one of the most important manga of the 1970s, Nakazawa Keiji’s very loosely autobiographical story about a six-year-old boy living in Hiroshima at the time that residents of that city became […]

1999’s Baby Geniuses is complete garbage, shockingly misconceived as a concept, with horribly executed technique that plunges it into the darkest, mildewiest hollow of the Uncanny Valley. So imagine the horrors I have in store for us when I declare – and I mean it with the most utterly tranquil sincerity – that it didn’t […]