Discovering good movies, one bad movie at a time

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 […]

Any serious bad movie watcher knows that the films that are very famous for being bad generally aren’t really the worst of the worst. Like, Plan 9 from Outer Space? Helpless and very stupid, but it’s got its charms – it’s not even the worst Ed Wood movie. The subjects of Mystery Science Theater 3000? […]

It’s easy – very, very easy, I’d say – to look at the current state of comic book movies and feel nothing but cold dislike for the machine-pressed non-art that the genre has largely turned into, as we enter the third decade of the post-X-Men superhero boom. But, while I have no desire to apologise […]

The most interesting thing about 6 Underground The only thing that is interesting about 6 Underground whatsoever is how it was financed and distributed. The 14th film directed by Michael Bay  comes after a bizarre dozen years in his career, during which time he focused on only two kinds of production: five Transformers pictures, each […]

A quarter of a century has passed since commercial & music video director Michael Bay made his first feature, and rapper and sitcom actor Will “The Fresh Prince” Smith made his big push into movie stardom, with 1995’s Bad Boys, a big, bombastic action-comedy extravaganza that is, by Bay standards, unusually tidy and legible. Those […]

You’ve got to hand it to the Walt Disney Company: in only four years and two days, they managed to completely slaughter the golden goose of Star Wars. Like, the strongest brand name in the history of popcorn cinema. That Star Wars. I say this on the occasion of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, […]

If the whole point of a movie is that it follows the narrative logic of a video game, I wonder: does that mean that giving that film a “the same thing only with a few purely cosmetic tweaks” type of sequel actually counts as a strength? This question arrives on the back of Jumanji: The […]

One of those facts that keeps getting passed around about Gemini Man, to such a degree that I feel like a dull-witted asshole for bringing it up at all, is that the project (from a screenplay originally by Darren Lemke) was initially put into development at Disney in 1997. After being pushed at several of […]

Intermittently 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: in Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw, Dwayne Johnson plays a character who was introduced as a villain in […]

Furious 7, the last altogether good movie in the Fast & Furious series, came out in April 2015. This is very recent according to any human-scale accounting of time; but it has been an entire generation in American action cinema. The intervening four years have borne witness to a veritable golden age: while Furious 7 […]

A cursory perusal of the reviews for Disney’s new remake of The Lion King reveals that even some of the pointedly negative ones will concede that it is, at least, a very visually amazing, even beautiful film. This is wrong. It looks like a dead dog’s asshole on a hot day. I have never been […]

The killer alligator picture Crawl is maybe the least Alexandre Aja-esque film that Alexandre Aja has directed thus far, which I imagine is even a good thing for some people. The filmmaker’s body of work, to date, has been one of extreme violence and gore, with highlights including the 2003 New French Extremity barnburner High […]