Category Archives: 2020 Films

Reviews: The King of Staten Island (2020)

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

  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: …it runs a bit long (and feels it), but Davidson effortlessly carries his character study nestled within a community portrait. This isn’t a laugh-a-minute comedy, instead a dramedy where tattoos both artful and inelegant draw the biggest guffaws.
  • Herman Dhaliwal @ Cinema Sanctum
    • Excerpt: It is Judd Apatow’s most affecting film in recent memory, and it cements Pete Davidson as a star.
  • Mike McGranaghan @ The Aisle Seat
    • Excerpt: A comedy of real substance.
  • [New] | Aaron Neuwirth @ We Live Entertainment
    • Excerpt: The film takes a long time to get there, but it’s not short on the laughs and the amount of heart required.
  • Betty Jo Tucker @ ReelTalk Movie Reviews
    • Excerpt: Although this comedy-drama starring one of our favorite SNL regulars failed to evoke much laughter from my husband and me, we both appreciate the humanity and hope the film offers.

Reviews: Miss Juneteenth (2020)

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

  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: …a gem that thrusts Beharie into a well deserved spotlight and announces Peoples as a filmmaker able to project the way circumstance and community have shaped her protagonist onto the screen and make us invested in her welfare.
  • Herman Dhaliwal @ Cinema Sanctum
    • Excerpt: Channing Godfrey Peoples delivers a strong exploration of Black motherhood, anchored by a great lead performance from Nicole Beharie.
  • MaryAnn Johanson @ FlickFilosopher.com
    • Excerpt: A beautiful cinematic experience, delicately subtle and bursting with a gorgeous sense of place and character. There is wonderful intimate suspense in every moment of Nicole Beharie’s performance.
  • Jared Mobarak @ JaredMobarak.com
    • Excerpt: [Despite its] well-worn formula, [the film] still feels fresh thanks to a powerful central performance and authentically lived-in environment.
  • [New] | Beverly Questad @ It’s Just Movies
    • Excerpt: CGP remarked that the theme of Miss Juneteenth was an exploration of what happens “when good things come too late.

Reviews: Irresistible (2020)

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Reviews: Endings, Beginnings (2020)

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

  • [New] | Rick Aragon @ Rick’s Texan Reviews
  • Herman Dhaliwal @ Cinema Sanctum
    • Excerpt: The filmmaking is elegant and gorgeous, but it still can’t help but feel stock and standard. However, Shailene Woodley still manages to shine through.
  • MaryAnn Johanson @ FlickFilosopher.com
    • Excerpt: Love this cast, but, my god, I hate these characters. I hate this miserable take on romance, which mistakes wallowing in self-pity for introspection, and people being awful for philosophical depth.
  • Jared Mobarak @ The Film Stage
    • Excerpt: I have to imagine that a second viewing is where Endings, Beginnings truly shines. I’m just not sure I care enough to confirm it.
  • Beverly Questad @ It’s Just Movies
    • Excerpt: Some sorry millennials will gravitate to this story, but Daphne’s life was too much a thoughtless, self-centered, woe-is-me story of an unemployed, unrealized woman for a mature audience to appreciate.

Reviews: End of Sentence (2020)

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Reviews: And Then We Danced (2020)

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

  • [New] | Rick Aragon @ Rick’s Texan Reviews
  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: In one amazing sequence, the camera follows Merab through room after room of David’s wedding reception toward his heartbreak before doubling back against the irony of dancing guests… His final, rebellious dance for Aleko and Beso is a complete show stopper.
  • Jared Mobarak @ The Film Stage
    • Excerpt: And Then We Danced is a love story, but it’s not merely a sexual awakening. We’re watching as Merab is exposed to a world he’s been conditioned to ignore.
  • Jonathan Richards @ www.santafenewmexican.com
    • Excerpt: Akin doesn’t discover many original wrinkles in this coming out story, but it’s the powerful cultural context, and some terrific dancing and acting by Gelbakhiani, that earn this movie its dancing shoes.
  • Rene Sanchez @ Cine Sin Fronteras [Spanish]
    • Excerpt: And Then We Danced es una vibrante, desafiante y enternecedora semblanza sobre el primer amor, aquel que deja una huella indeleble en nuestros corazones para siempre. Un relato necesario que muestra que el amor es amor, sin etiquetas ni prejuicios.

Reviews: 7500 (2020)

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

  • Andrea Chase @ KillerMovieReviews.com
    • Excerpt: By removing any hint of sensationalism from the events, filmmaker Patrick Vollrath focuses on the moment-to-moment uncertainty of people ripped in an instant from the security of their familiar routines, and then forced to face both impossible choices as well as their own mortality.
  • Herman Dhaliwal @ Cinema Sanctum
    • Excerpt: Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s performance and the filmmakers’ effective tension building makes for an engaging watch, even if there is little going on under the surface.
  • Rob DiCristino @ F This Movie
  • [New] | Mark Hobin @ Fast Film Reviews
    • Excerpt: Joseph Gordon-Levitt gives another solid performance in this generic airborne thriller.
  • MaryAnn Johanson @ FlickFilosopher.com
    • Excerpt: Mundanity builds to almost unbearable tension, but this isn’t an action movie. It’s a drama grounded in emotional realism thanks to the Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s intense empathy and vulnerable humanity.
  • Jared Mobarak @ JaredMobarak.com
    • Excerpt: At best it reveals the film to be tone-deaf in its bid to humanize victims of a complex situation by placing them in the exact scenario westerners use to dehumanize them.
  • Eddie Pasa @ Gunaxin

Reviews: Da 5 Bloods (2020)

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

  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: : It’s hard to pin down in its early goings, often seeming almost parodic… but once Da 5 are reunited in the jungle, the film coalesces into something powerful.
  • Karl Delossantos @ Smash Cut Reviews
    • Excerpt: On its surface, Da 5 Bloods is an exhilirating adventure filled with twists, turns, and Spike Lee’s iconic style. However, it’s also a depth-filled character study that his heartbreakingly prescient about our present moment.
  • Herman Dhaliwal @ Cinema Sanctum
    • Excerpt: Spike Lee’s approach to the material is done with a stirring relevance and fearlessness that shows he is still able to capture the pulse of the zeitgeist better than pretty much anyone else out there.
  • Mark Hobin @ Fast Film Reviews
    • Excerpt: It’s male camaraderie and brotherhood that make this Spike Lee joint so effective.
  • Charlie Juhl @ Citizen Charlie
    • Excerpt: There is action and drama aplenty, but Spike Lee isn’t here to just entertain us; he never is, he’s here to educate us. We’re on a guided tour of how the black man is the foundation of the United States of America, yet has only received scorn and torment in return.
  • Mike McGranaghan @ The Aisle Seat
    • Excerpt: Spike Lee has been delivering masterpieces for a long time. He does it again now.
  • Simon Miraudo @ Student Edge
    • Excerpt: For as long as there has been cinema, we have needed a Spike Lee. We may always need Spike Lee.
  • Jared Mobarak @ JaredMobarak.com
    • Excerpt: That’s not to say that the good doesn’t outweigh the bad, though. I merely hypothesize that a great two-hour drama exists within this over-inflated, two and a half hour epic.
  • [New] | Aaron Neuwirth @ We Live Entertainment
    • Excerpt: Not willing to settle down or hold back on ambition, Da 5 Bloods finds Lee operating on all his high functioning levels.
  • Paulo Portugal @ Insider [Portuguese]
  • Josh Taylor @ www.forgetfulfilmcritic.com
    • Excerpt: Spike Lee’s indelible style, wit, and focus on black issues is what makes the picture as good as it is. He has created – in collaboration with the actors portraying them – four black men who are all dealing with what the Vietnam War did to them. They do so in different ways, and Lee explores the unique ways in which trauma affects and is expressed by those who have survived it.

Reviews: Becky (2020)

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

  • Herman Dhaliwal @ Cinema Sanctum
    • Excerpt: As a violent home invasion thriller, it’s engaging, it’s intense, Lulu Wilson and Kevin James are both stellar, and it absolutely delivers for genre fans looking to have a gnarly good time.
  • [New] | James Jay Edwards @ The Big Smoke America
  • Mike McGranaghan @ The Aisle Seat
    • Excerpt: Becky is bad, just not in a way that’s any fun, and Kevin James neither embarrasses himself nor has an Uncut Gems moment like his pal Adam Sandler.
  • Brent McKnight @ The Last Thing I See
    • Excerpt: Writing about movies feels trite right now, but this one is about an angsty tween absolutely eviscerating a gang of hateful Nazis, including one played by Kevin James, and that’s always welcome. Feel-good movie of the summer so far.
  • [New] | Jared Mobarak @ JaredMobarak.com
    • Excerpt: Someone has to learn something from [the scenario’s] potential horror. If neither [Becky] nor we learn anything, it’s all just been an exploitative mess of genre tropes.

Reviews: The High Note (2020)

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

  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: a more benevolent take on the star/underling dynamic of many films that have come before it with a surprise up its sleeve which you may not see coming and which helps to alleviate some unfortunate flaws.
  • [New] | Mark Hobin @ Fast Film Reviews
    • Excerpt: This glossy pop distraction won’t any awards for originality, but superior performances elevate this music industry tale.
  • Charlie Juhl @ Citizen Charlie
    • Excerpt: The Vegas residency version of a story which preaches new material, but declines to offer any
  • Mike McGranaghan @ The Aisle Seat
    • Excerpt: The High Note is a music-based comedy that I enjoyed the heck out of.
  • Eddie Pasa @ DC Filmdom
    • Excerpt: The High Note belts its own tune by celebrating a genuine camaraderie between women looking out for each other personally and professionally.