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Out in Theaters: ‘THE PREDATOR’ 

Shane Black proves a semi-charmed remedy for the wavering outer space slasher franchise in The Predator, ushering in a new era of the horror-tinged sci-fi action with gutsy enthusiasm and immature brio. A neck-break pace and trademark jet Black humor define this goofy, giddy motion picture about blood-thirsty invaders from outer space come to an American small town right out of a John Mellencamp song. The fourth (or sixth if you count the dreadful Alien cross-over events) installment in the Rastafarian space slayer series manages no shortage of missteps – waddling into the three-pronged crosshair of some hot topic controversy along the way – but comes out the other side as a buoyant, bloody joyride of cinematic ridiculousness that revels in its throwback homaging of the excesses of the 1980s. Read More

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Out in Theaters: ‘THE BOOK OF HENRY’

The Book of Henry, only the third film from “indie” director wunderkind Colin Trevorrow, plays like a film adaptation of a best selling novel. There’s sudden shocking twists, richly drawn, if brazenly over-the-top, characters and a hurried pace that all coalesce to feel like the product of 300 pages of prose siphoned into a 100-page screenplay. Big, bold and unpredictable, Henry unfolds like a suburban Dan Brown novel; it’s pulpy and scrumptious while it lasts, brimming with sudden breakneck turns that veer the narrative into perpetual new territory, but won’t leave much of an imprint once you’ve slammed it shut. Read More

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Out in Theaters: ‘ROOM’

In the crippling solitude of a padlocked garden shed, Ma (Brie Larson) and Jack (Jacob Tremblay) bestow meaning unto mundanity. Just as Max’s world is fire and blood, their world is bondage and fantasy. Each item in their life’s limited pantry becomes a proper noun. There’s Bucket, Melty Spoon, Chair 1 and Chair 2. There’s Wardrobe in which Jack sleeps, when Old Nick comes. And of course, there’s Room. Ma, unable to yet explain to her recently 5-year old son that their life is one of mere captivity, spins a wild yarn about all life existing in Room. Everything outside of Room (Jack learns of the outside world via a janky television set) is make believe. Up until now, this fiction has been their salvation, providing an insular bubble wrap for the horrific situation in which they’ve found themselves. But as the tides turn with their captor, Ma and Jack must find the fortitude to free themselves or risk spending the rest of their existence in a 100-square foot space. Or worse. Read More