Discovering good movies, one bad movie at a time

The conventional wisdom around Ready or Not is that it’s a lacerating satire of vicious, hapless rich people, a smart commentary on the depravities of the 1%, a Film For Right Now. And okay, sure. It can do that if you want it to. I don’t think it does it particularly well, or with anything […]

The IMDb synopsis for The Art of Racing in the Rain reads as follows: “Through his bond with his owner, aspiring Formula One race car driver Denny, golden retriever Enzo learns that the techniques needed on the racetrack can also be used to successfully navigate the journey of life.” What this fails to clarify is […]

There is simply no reason for a live-action adaptation of the interactive children’s cartoon Dora the Explorer to be good. And when we add in the ugly wrinkled that the beaming seven-year-old of the show has been aged up to an improbably innocent teenager forced to go to public school for the first time, I […]

Ask a horror fan what draws them to the genre, and you’ll get any number of possible answers. Ask that question of, say, a twelve-year-old horror fan, and I suspect that the range of answers will be at least somewhat narrowed down: and high on that list would be gross corpses with lots of gore […]

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 […]

So, his name is Stu, and he drives an Uber. This really is the sum total of what what qualifies for wit in Stuber, a deeply unsatisfying movie that typifies almost everything wrong with comedies in modern American cinema, save one: it appears to have a proper screenplay, by Tripper Clancy, and not just a […]

For some years now, director Quentin Tarantino has been maintaining that his tenth feature will also be his last. While I don’t actually believe that (artists retire when they die, no earlier), I suddenly find myself deeply hoping that he doesn’t believe it either. Or maybe that when he says that it will be “his” […]

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 […]

Taking a piece of pop culture as profoundly yoked to a specific moment in cultural and social history as 1971’s Shaft and updating it for modern tastes is a fool’s game, one that has fooled people twice now. Which, I mean, if a talent as undeniable as John Singleton couldn’t crack the problem with 2000’s […]

There are multiple versions of 1973’s The Wicker Man, but the one that has been easiest to see for most of the film’s existence is 88 minutes long. This might not matter, since you’re not reading a review of The Wicker Man, but here’s the thing: Midsommar is basically The Wicker Man with the serial […]

Part of me, and it is a very large part, feels extremely uncomfortable giving Yesterday a star rating implying that it’s a good film, because in point of fact it is not. It is an adorable film, almost entirely on the backs of stars Himesh Patel and Lily James; it is one of the most […]