Discovering good movies, one bad movie at a time

Toy Story 4 isn’t bad. This is, already, a huge achievement, for there was every reason in the world for it to be bad: Pixar Animation Studios has a fairly unimpressive track record with sequels and is nowhere near the regular level of absolute brilliance they were when the last film in this series, Toy Story 3, came out in 2010. Not to mention that the same Toy Story 3 […]

So the summer that time forgot marches on, having finally produced one single truly worthwhile film, which is not hardly enough to redeem everything else sucking the air out of movie theaters across America. July looks like it might be bringing another; but God only knows, at this point. (By the way, to everyone who noted that I missed Eclipse last month: yes, but only out of the intense hope […]

Ho-hum. Another summer, another Pixar feature, another masterpiece. This time, though, the stakes were higher for the studio than they ever have been: for not only was there the pressure of continuing the run of magnificent CGI cartoons that have left Pixar arguably the most consistently excellent filmmaking body in history, there was also the pressure of paying due respect to what is probably the most beloved movie franchise of […]

A full review is, obviously, forthcoming, but I must just say this about Toy Story 3. Not very long ago, I had to this to say about the film: “I am more excited about Toy Story 3 than anything else in the next six months; I am dreading Toy Story 3 more than anything else in the next six months, as well.” Let me say only this at present: Pixar, […]

The story goes that the Disney execs, flush with the excitement of direct-to-video sequels (a hellish new revenue stream they first discovered with 1994’s bland but inoffensive The Return of Jafar, though the Pandora’s box of inanity was really opened with 1997’s Beauty and the Beast: The Enchanted Christmas), commanded John Lasseter and his Pixar minions to produce a DTV continuation of Toy Story, and Lasseter was unable to disagree. […]

It’s almost hard to remember, but in 1995, Disney Animation Studios was still a pretty well-regarded brand name. They were fresh off the run of Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin and The Lion King that had resulted in some of the biggest box office receipts and most glowing critical acclaim of the company’s nearly 70-year history, and while the summer of ’95 did bear witness to Pocahontas – in hindsight, […]

Did Mister Rogers swim every day? Was he a vegetarian? Did he play the piano with his wife? Did fans sing to him on the subway? Was there really a journalist won over by his kindly nature? I’m breaking down what was fact vs. fiction in the new Mister Rogers movie. What is the true story of the trip down memory lane for so many of us? As always in […]

A review requested by Rebecca S, with thanks for contributing to the Second Quinquennial Antagony & Ecstasy ACS Fundraiser. Toys is one of the best examples I can think of why “kill your babies” is held to be important artistic advice. It is also one of the best examples of why I’m always privately happy when artists leave their babies alive, even if – especially if – they’re malformed and […]

Onward is the 22nd animated feature made by Pixar Animation Studios, and thus we arrive at a numerically exciting point. For 2010’s Toy Story 3, the last movie in that company’s virtually uninterrupted early string of medium-defining computer animated films, was their 11th feature, which means they have now been a company that makes generally unexceptional, mediocre filler (with something actively great popping up only very rarely) for exactly as […]

Jump to: Tim’s Predictions | Rob’s Predictions | Carrie’s Predictions TIM’S PREDICTIONS BEST PICTURE 1917 Ford v Ferrari The Irishman Jojo Rabbit Joker Little Women Marriage Story Once Upon a Time …in Hollywood Parasite Will win: 1917 Should win: Once Upon a Time …in Hollywood Should have been here: A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood This category has been skewing more and more towards nice character stories in recent years, […]

If you’re into dark alternate origin stories, you might be pretty psyched to see Todd Phillips’ Joker with the most 2020 Oscar nominations at 11 nods including best picture, best director, and best actor. You’ll also see some love for a few of my favorites, Little Women and Jojo Rabbit, along with Marriage Story, The Irishman, Parasite, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, and more. Scarlett Johansson in particular had […]

The Oscar nominations are upon us, and I would hate myself if I didn’t register my official predictions for what I expect to be nominated on the morning of Monday, 13 January. PICTURE 1917 The Irishman Jojo Rabbit Joker Little Women Marriage Story Once Upon a Time …in Hollywood Parasite I am formally predicting only the above eight films. If there is a ninth nominee, I expect it to be: […]