Writer-director Christopher Landon has a long history working with Blumhouse, first with the Paranormal Activity sequels then with the duo of Happy Death Day horror-comedies. The latter—Happy Death Day 2U in particular—present an intriguing twist on familiar generic ground which I enjoyed quite a bit. It would only make sense, then, that his latest, Freaky, a body-swap horror farce, would tickle my fancy just the same. That was my first thought.
Then, I recalled that Landon also co-wrote and directed Scout’s Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse, a similarly self-aware horror comedy that I found Continue reading Freaky (2020) Movie Review
Contemporary crime films are often compared to the defining antecedents to contemporary crime—critical hits from the 1990s like Goodfellas and Pulp Fiction. Generally, these are sites of contention in which it becomes easy to tear down a new film by being too directly inspired by previous, successful films. There is something to these comparisons, given a film like Pulp Fiction, which helped ring in a golden age of independent films in the 1990s, directly influenced a number of films. But this form of criticism by comparison—I’m guilty of doing it often—can come across as limiting and exclusionary in an unproductive way.
With this in mind, I am in something of a bind. Arkansas, which is due to be released on VOD on May 5, feels like an attempt to Continue reading Arkansas (2020) Movie Review
With a title like Brawl in Cell Block 99, one might think that S. Craig Zahler’s second directorial effort is an exploitation film filled with B-movie action. There are elements in the script and set pieces that signal toward grindhouse action, sure, but Brawl in Cell Block 99 is more than just a B-movie. It is a clever, exploitation action pastiche.
Following Zahler’s first film, Bone Tomahawk, which seamlessly blended genres without sacrificing the artistic beauty or history of those genres, it is no surprise that Continue reading Brawl in Cell Block 99 (2017) Movie Review
One man. Millions of movies.