THE WAVE

I rented this Norwegian disaster film because it was touted as one of those “Great Horror Films You’ve Never Seen.” NOT! Not a horror film. Plot: maverick scientist’s warnings ignored, he’s separated from his family when the worst happens, must survive the disaster (in this case a fjord tsunami) in order to save them. (Sound familiar?)
FF=3

SKIN TRADE

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.

FF=3

REVENGE OF THE GREEN DRAGONS

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.

FF=3

JUPITER ASCENDING

This is a tough one.  I expected to hate it, but because of the Wachowskis’ involvement, I gave it a go. It’s bad, old-fashioned space opera from the Planet Stories days, but not as awful as you’d expect from the reviews. The visuals are super, the story is preposterous, the actors do what they can with the roles (except for Eddie Redmayne who is consistently terrible).  I love astronomical eye candy, so I guess I’m a sucker for these visuals.  You def need to check your brain at the door, but if you’re throwing a party, you could put this on your big screen with the sound off and you’d have cool wallpaper.

FF=3

SEVENTH SON

Sure it’s got Jeff Bridges and Julianne Moore, but you know this by-the-numbers Joseph Campbell template by heart.  It’s been done and done a lot better.  (Hint: the boy is Luke, Bridges is Obi Wan, the black witch is Vader.) Not worth the 100 minutes.

FF=3

DELIVER US FROM EVIL

In a word…dark. Dark mood, dark lighting (sometimes I couldn’t see what was happening). Supposedly based on a true story. Bana is okay as the cop, but Edgar Ramirez is super as the ex-addict priest. The trouble with the film (for me) was its length and the sense of deja vu throughout. Okay, another word…”cliched.” I guess I’m done with demonic possession flicks. Once you’ve seen The Exorcist and experienced its resonance, where do you go from there?

FF=3