Discovering good movies, one bad movie at a time

There is very little inherently interesting about Things Heard & Seen, a movie about which the strongest emotional response I have had is frustration at the almost gravitational pull that I have towards typing out the title as Things Seen & Heard, having to bodily force myself on the right track every time.  Or that […]

I’m no purist. I don’t think there are all that many things you need to include in a film adaption of the long-running video game series Mortal Kombat. While the games have a fairly involved overarching story line, I don’t really think most players are that aware of what it is, and anyway it’s been […]

I have never read Patrick Ness’s 2008 YA novel The Knife of Never Letting Go, the source material for the feature film Chaos Walking (the movie takes its title form the overall series of which the book was the first part). Indeed, until a day ago, I had never heard of The Knife of Never […]

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 […]

There is certainly a very good film within Better Days. Arguably, in fact, there are three: a story about high school bullying, a story about the high pressure put upon teenagers to perform well academically, and a love story about two teenaged outsiders finding strength in each other’s presence. It’s not very hard to see […]

At this point, in the third decade of the 21st Century, “terrible late-career comedies starring the formerly great actor Robert De Niro” has become its own genre, and I don’t think there’s a person among us who would claim that it’s a good one. Even so, The War with Grandpa is impressively terrible. The warning […]

The one and only Ivan who gives Disney’s pandemic-stricken direct-to-streaming refugee The One and Only Ivan its title is a very subdued gorilla played by a CGI effect and voiced by Sam Rockwell, and he spends mot of the the movie doing almost nothing other than just kind of hanging out, being quiet, and looking […]

I do not think it was on purpose, so I do not think it deserves credit, but Yes Day absolutely nails the horrible feeling of being trapped with proud parents who are unreasonably confident that everybody around them must surely love their terrible, terrible children. It is an exhausting, loud sugar rush of a movie. […]

The best thing I can force myself to say about Coming 2 America is that it’s very easy to imagine it turning out worse. Much worse, even; while the Eddie Murphy who starred in the beloved 1988 comedy Coming to America (incidentally, sequel titles that can be distinguished from the original visually but not audibly, […]

The detention center at Guantanamo Bay Naval Base, where hundreds of men were (and in some cases still are) held for years at a time, mostly without having been formally charged with a crime or tried before a judge, represents what I would consider the single most flagrant human rights violation perpetrated by the United […]

Given the pandemic-related days to its release date, Raya and the Last Dragon, the 59th animated feature in the Walt Disney Animation Studios canon has by chance landed on exactly the same weekend, relatively speaking, as Pixar Animation Studios’ first release of 2020, Onward – the tenth weekend of their respective calendar years. And this […]

Anyone comfortable stating in public “I am a fan of the directorial works of Lee Daniels, and I root for his films to succeed” honestly deserves exactly what they get. But the thing is, I am a fan, and I do root for him; whatever one wants to say about his first three movies, 2005’s […]