What a pleasant, creepy surprise. Excellent acting (esp. from Jason Bateman, showing a dark side I didn’t know he had) and good direction. Despite a few implausibilities, the script starts out feeling familiar but then takes a few left turns that rivet your attention. (The trailer makes it seem like it’s going to be some cliched slasher film, but it’s anything but.) I don’t want to say anymore except that karma is a bitch.



I found this both stultifying and stupefying. Some good lines, but if Ultron is the singularity it’s supposed to be, it sure as hell doesn’t even brush its potential for mayhem — like taking over the internet and the power grid and everything connected to them.  But that would not require CGI and hammers and metal suits.  (Yes, Jarvis was supposedly keeping Ultron from the Internet.  Really?  After Ultron dissolved and absorbed him?  How convenient.)  Let’s face it, a singularity that wanted to destroy humanity would not waste its time building other robots.

FF=3 (those interminable fight scenes)


“You just went and made a new dinosaur? Probably not a good idea…”

Nope. Not a good idea at all.

I enjoyed the hell out of this movie. The prior sequels were sort of meh for me, but this fires on all cylinders. Well paced, with the obligatory family drama kept to a minimum, and the re-emphasis on Crichton’s original theme about scientific hubris. Plot problems? Yes. Continuity problems? Yes. But still, the perfect YA movie. So contact your inner 13-year old, sit him or her on your lap, and enjoy. Wait for the deus-ex moment at the end: not deus ex machina, but deus ex lacus.



This film takes itself seriously. As it should, considering its subject is human trafficking. I can’t think of any fate too awful for the creeps who buy and sell human beings. But at its heart this is a revenge film, with endless chases and exhausting mano-a-mano fights. Nothing new to see here. Keep moving.



I’m not sure why this got such bad reviews. Yes, it has a stereotypical Cold-War plot, but that’s just an excuse to put the characters through their paces. It dances along with some laughs here and there and looks gorgeous (so does Alicia Vikander). A popcorn movie, fer sher. If you demand more from all your movie watching, skip this. If you don’t mind a movie that doesn’t take itself seriously, this is for you.



You’d swear you were watching a Sergio Leone spaghetti western. But it’s by a Danish company, starring a Dane (Mads Mikkelsen), and directed by a Dane. Does that make it a stegte-sild western instead? Even odder: it was filmed in South Africa (which I didn’t realize till I saw it in the credits). Whatever and wherever, it’s a well-done, if familiar, western (despite Jeffrey Dean Morgan’s villain being a bit over the top).



Supposedly true and based on the Chinese underworld scene in NYC during the 1980s and early 90s, this could have been exciting, but it’s a snoozer. Ray Liotta appears for maybe 10 minutes (probably as a favor to producer Scorcese). Doomed by too small a budget, too many characters, too-small sets (it appears to have been shot in real tenement apartments), and a script that never comes to life.



If you’re not already, this will make you a Geoffrey Rush fan. I don’t want to say too much about the film because it’s best enjoyed by going in clueless with no expectations. It’s so well filmed, especially the opening sequence which firmly establishes Rush’s character with little or no dialog — pure visual storytelling. Just sit back and enjoy.



Apparently some viewers/critics took this film seriously. I found it laugh-out-loud-funny at times. A whole buncha people — some DIY types plus an ex-husband who hires a contract killer (Simon Pegg) — want Alice (played by the very pretty Alice Braga) dead.  It has the noir sine qua non of events spiraling out of control but lots of farcical elements as well. Filmed along a beautiful stretch of coast in Western Australia.



(spoilers ahead) Once you accept the bizarrely intricate setup (I suggest calisthenics for your suspension-of-disbelief muscle), this is a fascinating movie. I’m a sucker for anything involving the singularity and this is a truly unique approach. Ana is a marvelous mix of human and CG imagery and, as portrayed by Alicia Vikander, totally engaging as a character. You can’t blame Caleb for falling for her. Nathan’s hubris and self-imposed isolation seem over the top at times, but work for the story. I don’t want to say much more. It’s a quiet film — even the brief burst of violence is low key. It’s loaded with dialogue – but clever, intelligent dialogue. Keep your ears open. Thoughtful SF with slowly building suspense mixed with growing sexual tension.