Discovering good movies, one bad movie at a time

You know Tay Garnett? You probably haven’t heard of Tay Garnett. The fact of the matter is, Tay Garnett really isn’t a terribly important film director, though there are those among us who perk up at checking out what promises to be yet another ’30s or ’40s programmer, and unexpectedly find his name attached. I […]

The word “gimmick” almost always comes with a certain sneering tone of superiority attached: the suggestion is inherent that a thing was less gimmicky, it would be improved as a result. This is not a hard-and-true relationship. There is, for example, the career of director & producer William Castle, whose film career could not be […]

Even among those who love it, there’s no real consensus as to why the 1999 horror film Ravenous is great. Because it is a punchy black comedy? Because it is an intelligent attack on social constructs of bravery and masculinity? Because it’s a satire of American expansion in the West? Because it’s one of the […]

Lord knows, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, the 2009 film that is more or less the reason that Sony Pictures Animation has any sort of brand name cachet at all, is not looking to break ground. It has a hapless male protagonist with a wacky animal sidekick, a ditzy girl supporting character, a doe-eyed […]

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: there is nothing – NOTHING – original about the notion of 2 Guns, which pairs two prickly law enforcement […]

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: the year’s third superhero movie, and the last of the summer, The Wolverine finds the title character traveling to […]

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: The Lone Ranger cost a fucking silly amount of money for a genre that hasn’t been popular in generations. […]

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: Pixar Animation Studios’ love affair with franchising continues with their first-ever prequel, Monsters University. In keeping with my quest […]

There is literally zero reason for This Is the End to work as well as it does, and I say this as someone who has entire run out of anything except for sullen tolerance for tat least three members of its six-man lead ensemble. For anybody that can hear the name “James Franco” and not […]

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: combining two things that go together pretty well, all things considered Now You See Me combines the showy world […]

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: though Epic might be the third-place finisher of the week’s new releases, it is first in the hearts of […]

Of the 16 films made between 1949 and 1981 that featured visual effects by the great artist Ray Harryhausen, you could mount a serious argument that not one of them is very good. I would not personally agree with you (at a stone-cold minimum, Mighty Joe Young and The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms are both […]