Category comedy

Aloha

There’s an irritating tendency with a few movie critics, reviewers and pundits sometimes where they judge a film more on its production and development history than on the film itself. If a movie runs into trouble during filming or runs over budget or the director has issues with the lead actor, well, sometimes critics smell blood. […]

Spy

It opens with a sweeping tracking shot traveling over blue water towards an enormous European chateau, while the John Barry-esque score plays on the soundtrack. Inside, impeccably dressed millionaires hob-knob with other impeccably dressed millionaires. A smoothly debonair man in a tuxedo slips undetected downstairs. Already, we’re laughing in the audience, as we’ve seen countless […]

Pitch Perfect 2

I like Pitch Perfect 2 more for what it represents than as an actual cinematic experience. It stars multiple women of various shapes and sizes, races and creeds. It was directed by a woman, and did very well at the box office. It’s pleasant up to a point, and the musical numbers are fun and […]

What We Do in the Shadows

Vampire movies, like superhero flicks and dystopian action films based upon young adult novels, are not going away anytime soon. Better get used to it. Once in a while, though, a good vampire movie comes along, and once in an even longer while, a great one will pop up. What We Do in the Shadows, […]

Inherent Vice

With each new movie he makes, it’s becoming more and more apparent that Joaquin Phoenix is one of the best actors working today. As good as Daniel Day-Lewis was is Lincoln, Phoenix deserved the Academy Award for his astoundingly brilliant performance in The Master, a role so unlike anything I’ve seen in a movie that […]

Top Five

Chris Rock is one of the funniest people in America, but, for some reason, he’s never quite made that big of an impression as a film performer. He gave strong supporting performances in Dogma and Nurse Betty, and I’m a fan of his 2003 Head of State (which he also wrote and directed), but too much […]

Force Majeure

The film opens with a smiling family of four posing in ski gear on the French Alps. They shuffle and rearrange themselves in various motions, at the command of the (offscreen) photographer. As I’ve mentioned in past reviews, the opening scene is crucial to understanding how a film works. In this sequence, director Ruben Östlund depicts […]