Tag Archives: Alden Ehrenreich

Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) Movie Review

Driving home from the theater last night, I saw something really quite lovely. Turning down a curved street, and entering my line of vision for no longer than a second, I saw two people in conversation sitting on a ledge outside of a hotel. The pair—one a man, his back to me, and the other a woman, a warm smile on her face and a soulful tenderness in her eyes—each sat with their legs pulled up to their chests, almost as if they were mirrors of each other.

They were experiencing a genuinely human moment, captured through the film of my windshield. It was a silent movie. It ran for 1.5 seconds or less. But that snippet had more life, energy, and emotion than every shot in Solo: A Star Wars Story put together.

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Now, you may be thinking: what do two people sitting on a ledge in real life have to do with a multi-billion dollar franchise’s sequel/prequel? In execution: nothing.

But maybe these people are Continue reading Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) Movie Review

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Rules Don’t Apply (2016) Movie Review

In an instant, Rules Don’t Apply flings us into 1950s Hollywood under the reclusive control of Howard Hughes (Warren Beatty, who also directs), a Hollywood on the verge change. Hughes hires a bevy of young and hopeful starlets and precocious Frank Forbes (Alden Ehrenreich) to drive them around the city. Forbes and Hughes both fall into fascination over one of the actresses, Marla Mabrey (Lily Collins), a virginal and devout Virginian who chose to forego a college education for stardom.

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The film’s style begins equally in-your-face as the narrative. Cuts between reaction shots are rapid, disorienting. Sudden flourishes of period appropriate music intrude and then disappear before a meaningful tone can be established from it. The lighting is invasive in its brightness. Everything about the film has Continue reading Rules Don’t Apply (2016) Movie Review

Hail Caesar! (2016) Movie Review

In Hail Caesar!, the latest from the Coen Brothers, Baird Whitlock (George Clooney) is an actor during the Golden Age of Hollywood. He is introduced on-screen in a meta framing—a screening within a screening—portraying a Roman leader in a historical epic a la Spartacus. During filming of this movie, Whitlock is drugged and kidnapped.

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Hail Caesar! is the Coen Brothers’ love letter to classical Hollywood cinema. The standard genres of the period are represented: Westerns, historical epics, Broadway musical adaptations, bourgeois romance, etc.

The structural issue of this love letter is that Continue reading Hail Caesar! (2016) Movie Review