Reviews: The Dead Don’t Die (2019)

Here are review links for this film submitted by our members:

Reviews: Unicorn Store (2019)

Here are review links for this film submitted by our members:

  • [New] | Karl Delossantos @ Smash Cut Reviews
    • Excerpt: Unicorn Store benefits from an endearing performance by Brie Larson, but the screenplay fails to capitalize on the quirkiness of the premise which leaves much to be sought after.
  • Herman Dhaliwal @ Cinema Sanctum
    • Excerpt: Its quirkiness can wear out a bit thin, but it has enough charm to carry it through.
  • MaryAnn Johanson @ FlickFilosopher.com
    • Excerpt: More movies like this, please: a piquant mix of whimsy and snark; an insistence that it’s not crazy to forge your own oddball path; an embrace of girly uncool. Bring on the weird, difficult women.
  • Simon Miraudo @ Student Edge
    • Excerpt: Unicorn Store skewers when necessary, without judging those who prefer to keep things sweet.
  • Betty Jo Tucker @ ReelTalk Movie Reviews
    • Excerpt: This whimsical movie starring Brie Larson and featuring Samuel L. Jackson in a key role surprised me with its unusual casting and heartwarming essence.

Reviews: Gloria Bell (2019)

Here are review links for this film submitted by our members:

  • Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat @ Spirituality & Pracitce
    • Excerpt: A portrait of loneliness addressed by letting go and dancing.
  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: Julianne Moore gives us a woman we wish was not alone, yet feel perfectly comfortable leaving that way.
  • [New] | MaryAnn Johanson @ FlickFilosopher.com
    • Excerpt: Julianne Moore pulls off the small miracle of tamping down her own intense charisma while still imbuing the ordinary, unglam Gloria with lively verve and a dynamism of low-key resilience personified.
  • Charlie Juhl @ Citizen Charlie
    • Excerpt: Take a look at Julianne Moore completely lose herself to Laura Branigan’s eponymous tune and I dare you to not only admire that, but wish you were on the dance floor as well. “Gloria (Gloria), I think they got your number (Gloria) – I think they got the alias (Gloria) – that you’ve been living under (Gloria)!” You’re welcome for the ear worm.
  • Jared Mobarak @ JaredMobarak.com
    • Excerpt: While the movie might not be necessary, Moore’s performance surely is.

Reviews: Starfish (2019)

Here are review links for this film submitted by our members:

  • Jeremy Kibler @ The Artful Critic
    • Excerpt: “Starfish” is more impressionistic than it is straightforward storytelling, not so much telling an A-to-B narrative as it is evoking a vivid feeling.
  • Jared Mobarak @ JaredMobarak.com
    • Excerpt: [It asks] us to confront our longing for a past mired in nostalgia that we must forget in order to forgive ourselves enough for happiness to become possible again.
  • [New] | C.H. Newell @ Father Son Holy Gore
    • Excerpt: A uniquely personal vision of one person’s world ending and how that can feel as big and as tangible as an actual apocalypse.
  • [New] | Don Shanahan @ Every Movie Has a Lesson
    • Excerpt: Dangling the mysteries of the fallout from an off-screen cataclysmic event, the mental maelstrom of Starfish is eerie, imaginative, and highly impactful.
  • Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Weird Movies
    • Excerpt: It’s not a movie for those who value plot, but ‘Starfish’ earns a recommendation for anyone who appreciates a heavy dose of psychological drama in their genre films.

Reviews: Men in Black: International (2019)

Here are review links for this film submitted by our members:

  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: Even Chris Hemsworth, that sex symbol with a sense of humor, doesn’t enliven the proceedings, his best bit an in joke involving a smaller version of Thor’s hammer.
  • [New] | Herman Dhaliwal @ Cinema Sanctum
    • Excerpt: It’s hard to have any strong feelings on something like Men In Black: International when it seems like the film itself seems to not have much care or energy put into it.
  • [New] | Mark Hobin @ Fast Film Reviews
    • Excerpt: The plot is pretty standard stuff. However, this amiable production coasts on the smooth easygoing chemistry of its two leads.
  • [New] | MaryAnn Johanson @ FlickFilosopher.com
    • Excerpt: Performs a complete charmectomy on its usually hugely charismatic stars, leaves them to flounder about with a bizarrely inept script, and actually seems to be trolling us with its pseudo feminism.
  • [New] | Charlie Juhl @ Citizen Charlie
    • Excerpt: Claims to refresh and expand the MiB universe, yet it sullies and cheapens the first film already maligned by sequels which tripped over their shoelaces instead of carrying the baton.
  • [New] | Dan Lybarger @ Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
    • Excerpt: Picking a favorite Men in Black sequel is like choosing between Larry, Moe and Curly. Although each has his merits, one still has to select a Stooge.
  • [New] | Mike McGranaghan @ The Aisle Seat
    • Excerpt: This is the first unadulterated bomb of the 2019 summer season – a joyless, unfunny, ill-conceived mess.
  • Simon Miraudo @ Student Edge
    • Excerpt: Tessa Thompson’s great, but Men In Black: International just isn’t good—or gross—enough to earn any space in your memory.
  • [New] | Aaron Neuwirth @ We Live Entertainment
    • Excerpt: For all the clever gadgets and alien designs … , there’s not much here to make the film standout.
  • Eddie Pasa @ Gunaxin
  • Jason Pirodsky @ The Prague Reporter
    • Excerpt: Keeping Men in Black: International afloat, in addition to the colorful effects, globetrotting locals, and all-around first-rate production design – are two colorful central performances from Thompson and Hemsworth, who help breathe some fresh life into the franchise.
  • Don Shanahan @ Every Movie Has a Lesson
    • Excerpt: Tessa and Chris might glow like radium, but Men in Black: International is an inert gas, fleeting and faint.

Reviews: Shaft (2019)

Here are review links for this film submitted by our members:

  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: The plot is almost beside the point in a movie like 2019’s “Shaft,” which exists solely to enjoy Samuel L. Jackson’s cool quotient.
  • James Jay Edwards @ FilmFracture
  • [New] | Candice Frederick @ The Wrap
  • [New] | Courtney Howard @ FreshFiction.tv
    • Excerpt: What should be an irreverent send-up turns into a glorification of the good old days of toxic masculinity.
  • [New] | Dan Lybarger @ Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
    • Excerpt: Director Gordon Parks helped make the original Shaft and its follow up Shaft’s Big Score! more than time capsules. It didn’t hurt that he had previously worked as a photojournalist and had an eye for striking, cost-effective visuals. Tim Story clearly isn’t aiming for posterity with this one, but simply telling a dirty joke successfully seems like a lost art.

From Our Members’ Desks (Jun. 11, 2019)

OFCS members don’t just write film reviews. Here are several articles you might find interesting.

Festivals: General Coverage

SIFF 2019 wraps up with big films and other interesting titles

Brent McKnight @ The Seattle Times

  • Excerpt: The Seattle International Film Festival can be an unwieldy behemoth, an epic marathon that spans 25 days and encompasses more than 400 titles. But even marathons end, and the 45th installment draws to a close Sunday, June 9.

Awards Coverage

2019 Governors Awards Recipients Announced

Wesley Lovell @ Cinema Sight

Oscar Preview: Weekend of May 31-Jun. 2, 2019

Wesley Lovell @ Cinema Sight

  • Excerpt:

Video Essays, Video Reviews, Vlogs & More

Continue reading From Our Members’ Desks (Jun. 11, 2019)

Classics & More on DVD (Jun. 10, 2019)

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Pre-2017 Film Reviews

Devil’s Kiss

Peter Nellhaus @ Coffee, Coffee and more Coffee [1976]

The Giant Gila Monster

James Jay Edwards @ FilmFracture [1959]

A House in the Hills

James Jay Edwards @ FilmFracture [1993]

This Week at the Movies (Jun. 7, 2019)

Here are some reviews of films coming out at the theater this week as well as others that may be in theaters or newly on home video.

Opening: Jun. 7, 2019

Wide (United States)

Dark Phoenix

For member reviews of this film, follow this link

The Secret Life of Pets 2

For member reviews of this film, follow this link

Limited (United States)

The Gangster, the Cop, the Devil

Brent McKnight @ The Last Thing I See

  • Excerpt: Even with a few rough patches, The Gangster, the Cop, the Devil bubbles with a propulsive energy. Polished and glossy, it moves along with an easy, rapid momentum, myriad action beats, and another top-tier performance from Ma Dong-seok as a businessman brawler who provides a thoughtful sharpness to this fun, if familiar, crime thriller.

The Last Black Man in San Francisco

Aaron Neuwirth @ We Live Entertainment

  • Excerpt: Loving something so much not to know how to give it up is a powerful feeling, and this movie allows an audience to soak in this plight.

Late Night

Jared Mobarak @ JaredMobarak.com

  • Excerpt: Late Night [teaches] inclusivity and diversity as a means of reinvigorating creativity. [It] falls short of [its] potential, but the good still easily outweighs the bad.

2019 Films In Theaters Now In Select Areas

Continue reading This Week at the Movies (Jun. 7, 2019)

Reviews: The Secret Life of Pets 2 (2019)

Here are review links for this film submitted by our members:

  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: While writer Brian Lynch repeats the same mistakes he made with the first movie – mainly going far afield of organic adventures like a lost toy or trip to the vet’s – this time around he only errs with one of his plot threads and it is, once again, the one that features the thoroughly obnoxious Snowball.
  • [New] | Mark Hobin @ Fast Film Reviews
    • Excerpt: Thankfully it’s short but it still feels long because it’s so meandering.
  • [New] | Courtney Howard @ Variety
    • Excerpt: Stronger sentiments and higher hijinks elevate this sequel above the original.
  • Courtney Howard @ Variety
    • Excerpt: Stronger sentiments and higher hijinks elevate this sequel above the original.
  • MaryAnn Johanson @ FlickFilosopher.com
    • Excerpt: Underwhelming: episodic, a random collection of unconnected vignettes rather than one cohesive story. Inoffensive, but missing the first movie’s fantastical animals’ perspective on the human world.
  • [New] | Dan Lybarger @ Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
    • Excerpt: According to the credits, Brian Lynch wrote The Secret Life of Pets and this sequel. I checked because I thought the author of the screenplay might have been Dory, the forgetful fish from Finding Nemo.
  • Jared Mobarak @ The Film Stage
    • Excerpt: Illumination missed the boat on The Secret Life of Pets because the way they’ve told these stories thus far make them a lot more conducive to television than cinema.
  • Eddie Pasa @ DC Filmdom

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