Tag Archives: 2022

Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022) Movie Review

Catch me on the right day and I’ll tell you that Tobe Hooper’s The Texas Chain Saw Massacre is my favorite horror movie. It jostles around with a few other notables, but it will likely never leave my top three.

The Fede Alvarez-produced, David Blue Garcia-directed Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022) could be compared to the 1974 masterpiece with which it shares a title (sans definite article). Not just because it shares a villain, but also because it adopts a similar thinness of plot and character and dialogue. That said, I am not about to tell you that this year’s Texas Chainsaw Massacre is among my top three all-time horror favorites.

Let me tell you why. Oh, let me count the ways…

For starters, and I make similar mention of this in my review of the last awful Chainsaw installment, no sequel, prequel, nor reboot of Hooper’s original film can hope to Continue reading Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022) Movie Review

Death on the Nile (2022) Movie Review

Kenneth Branagh’s sleek Agatha Christie adaptation, his second after 2017’s underwhelming and overly staid Murder on the Orient Express, is a delight, just so long as you are patient with it.

For a murder mystery, Death on the Nile takes its sweet time getting to the murder. The script almost teases you with this delay. The characters are introduced (or reintroduced in some cases) with a coy monologue which lays out the backstories which establish each person’s potential motives. Establishing shots are occasionally interrupted by sudden acts of animal violence, as if to say, murder is in the nature of this world — just give it time. One poorly staged false start nearly takes the head off of the love-struck heiress Linnet Ridgeway-Doyle (Gal Gadot).

This heiress has jilted her childhood friend Jackie (Emma Mackey) by stealing Continue reading Death on the Nile (2022) Movie Review

After Yang (2022) Movie Review

After Yang premiered as part of the 2022 Sundance Film Festival.

Kogonada’s After Yang is a magic trick of a film. The title refers to a “techno-sapien” sibling (Justin H. Min), an android who serves as a caretaker and mentor for Mika (Malea Emma Tjandrawidjaja), the adopted child of Jake (Colin Farrell) and Kyra (Jodie Turner-Smith). While Jake and Kyra are too busy in their working lives, Mika has Yang, and she has grown very attached to him. The film takes place, largely, “after” Yang, in that he malfunctions early on and Jake spends most of the film attempting to get him repaired.

The magic trick comes to fruition roughly 45 minutes in, when Jake is able to watch a series of “memories” Yang stored in a small hard drive chip. They are all-too-brief snapshots of Continue reading After Yang (2022) Movie Review

2nd Chance (2022) Movie Review

2nd Chance premiered at the 2022 Sundance Film Festival

Ramin Bahrani is a director known primarily for fiction filmmaking. He made the Fahrenheit 451 adaptation for HBO. Last year, his script for The White Tiger was nominated for an Academy Award and a BAFTA. It perhaps does not come as a surprise then that Bahrani was initially approached by producers to make the story of Richard Davis, the Michigan man who developed the modern bulletproof vest, into a fiction film. And Davis’ tale could potentially make for an engaging fiction, given how outlandish aspects of it are.

This film could focus on Continue reading 2nd Chance (2022) Movie Review

Resurrection (2022) Movie Review

Resurrection premiered at the 2022 Sundance Film Festival.

Films which hinge on a central revelation are difficult to talk about. The experience of a film like this can be significantly altered if one already knows the revelation ahead of time. I won’t go into much detail about the plot of Andrew Semans’ Resurrection, for this reason. Just suffice it to say that your curiosity and subsequent shock at the revelation in Resurrection are required components to enjoying the film. And I think the film thoroughly fumbles its central conceit.

Which is not to say that the mystery surrounding the strange situation unfolding in front of us is not compelling, nor that the reveal itself is not Continue reading Resurrection (2022) Movie Review

Watcher (2022) Movie Review

Watcher premiered at the 2022 Sundance Film Festival and is competing in its U.S. Dramatic competition.

Chloe Okuno’s feature debutĀ Watcher is a thriller in the Rear Window tradition. Americans Julia (Maika Monroe) and Francis (Karl Glusman) move to Bucharest after Francis receives a promotion. Julia does not have a job here and does not speak Romanian, two facts which isolate her in her new environment, leaving her on edge as she goes about her days largely alone. And it does not help that Continue reading Watcher (2022) Movie Review

Emergency (2022) Movie Review

Emergency premiered at the 2022 Sundance Film Festival and is competing in the festival’s U.S Dramatic competition.

Carey Williams’ 2018 film Emergency won Sundance’s Special Jury Prize for short-form filmmaking. He adapted this short, with KD Davila serving as screenwriter, into a feature film of the same name. The film is one part buddy comedy, one part coming-of-age movie, and one part drama reflecting on multiple tensions present in the American conscious. If this sounds like three things which do not go together, you aren’t wrong. The extent to which one buys into the tonal tightrope walk Emergency is attempting is crucial to the enjoyment of the film.

I bought in. Perhaps not hook, line, and sinker. But taking this film on its own terms, following it through its kinks and lumps, I was met with a Continue reading Emergency (2022) Movie Review

Scream (2022) Movie Review

The extra-textual more or less fuels Hollywood at this point. Intertextuality and metatextuality exists in all manner of blockbuster cinema. And this certainly bleeds through to the audiences. Even casual moviegoers have become intimately aware of the larger, interconnected puzzle that makes up the Marvel cinematic universe, enough so that Spider-Man: No Way Home is released not as some esoteric nerdcore comic book movie which only the most knowledgeable fans are able to follow. No, it is one of the most profitable films ever, regardless of pandemic concerns.

This is not to discredit audience literacy over the way Hollywood functions, of course. And the self-referential, metatextual, etc. has been around in cinema for Continue reading Scream (2022) Movie Review

The 2022 Golden Globes Proves that TV Can Still Shape Cultural Relevance

The Golden Globes awards were announced last night, January 9. No red carpet. No fanfare. No televised event. Just the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) sending out the names of winners via social media. The full list of winners was later publicized in a press release. It was nothing compared to previous years, where the star-studded event has been known for launching Hollywood’s award season.

The HFPA was hit with controversy in 2021, resulting in the Golden Globes losing its right to Continue reading The 2022 Golden Globes Proves that TV Can Still Shape Cultural Relevance