1Q 2021 Twitter Film Reviews

Quarterly roundup of my Twitter film reviews.

#TheUnitedStatesVSBillieHoliday Andra Day is mesmerizing and all of the performances are sights to behold…but too bad the movie is a mess. There’s no character development, no plot progression…maybe this should’ve been a mini-series? Left me wondering who she really was. 2/5*

#TheFather A stunning (and devastating) performance from Anthony Hopkins in an incredibly challenging role. There’s been a lot of films on this subject but can’t think of one that creates such empathy for its subject while remaining so very compelling. In a class of its own. 5/5*

#LoveandMonsters Refreshing; this is the kind of movie we don’t make anymore. Genre-bending, plenty of action, and something pretty original. The core of this film lies in its beating heart and strengthening emotional bonds in wacky and trying situations…sound familiar? 4/5*

#ZackSnyderJusticeLeague A unity of vision and storytelling that have been absent from the DCEU to date, the vision laid out by #SnydersCut was stunning when I understood its full depth. There’s still some weak points and repetitive beats in battles, but damn it was cool. 3.5/5*

#AnotherRound is a poignant twist on the midlife crisis story that everyone can relate to. Finding a way to spice up daily life, looking for joy in banality and coming to terms with the choices you’ve made all come into play in this tragic, yet comedic and even sweet film. 5/5*

#SoundofMetal Pensive, evocative and soulful. Great to see Riz Ahmed finally break out with his gritty and compelling turn as Ruben, whose challenges go far beyond the loss of his hearing. Olivia Cooke’s Lou is heartbreaking – she’s never been better. Stunning photography. 4/5*

#Minari Pure cinematic emotion. This film lives in the hearts of its characters, each played perfectly. Kudos to the filmmakers for letting it all breathe. Outwardly showing the immigrant experience, on a deeper level, shows us what we all long to hear: We’re all the same. 4.5/5*

#PromisingYoungWoman There’s a lot to unpack here, and viewers should resist the urge to stick a label on this film. At its core, it’s about finding a way to deal with all-consuming grief, in the face of a system that won’t give you closure. Carey Mulligan is simply amazing. 4/5*

#Coming2America It’s fun, but lacks the narrative cohesion and charm of its predecessor. There are some good narrative arcs in here, but it’s all muddled by side plots and random bits. Enjoyed the nostalgia though; and that’s probably the best part of this one. 2/5*

#ThunderRoad An emotional high wire act. Few filmmakers and actors could balance the gut-wrenching drama with the off-beat comedy as well as Jim Cummings, and it just about works all the way through. It’s compelling and elegant, even if it doesn’t quite stick the landing. 4.5/5*

#LeaveNoTrace The way that Debra Granik pulls you into the world and develop empathy for these characters is nothing short of astonishing. Ben Foster and Thomasin McKenzie deliver Oscar-worthy performances. Compelling, timely and heartbreaking. Everyone should see this film. 5/5*

#JudasAndTheBlackMessiah Kaluuya delivers a transformative performance in this illuminating and compelling look at Black Panther Fred Hampton. The story unfolds at a deliberate pace, giving it a meditative quality. Would’ve been helped by a 2nd half acceleration of pace. 4/5*

#Nomadland An interesting mix of Into the Wild and The Dust Bowl, which feels both nostalgic with an odd longing for a better future at the same time. Frances McDormand has never been better. The photography is stunning. It’ll make you ask big questions about your own life. 5/5*

#OneNightInMiami Highly compelling meditation on race and politics in 1963 which is still just as prevalent today. These men met that night – what did they talk about? The questions asked are huge. The acting top notch. What a directorial debut for Regina King..must watch. 4.5/5*

#TheUpside Yes, it’s preachy. Yes, it’s schmaltzy. Yes, you’ve seen it before. But Hart and Cranston’s chemistry carries the day in an uplifting, entertaining and compelling crowdpleaser. 3/5*

#Greenland A surprisingly personal story for a disaster film, and the emotional through-line helps smooth over the film’s faults. Very well paced throughout, with solid performances and chemistry from Butler and Baccarin. Overall, smarter and better than expected. 3/5*

#TheMidnightSky A deliberate slow-burn drama that asks a lot of questions and works through some interesting themes, but in the end, I’m not sure what it was trying to say. It loses its dramatic heft through some uneven storytelling, though it’s still worth the trip. 2.5/5*

#NewsOfTheWorld Solid western elevated by the expert direction of Greengrass and the nuanced performances from Hanks and Zengel. The perfect allegory to come at the end of the Trump Era – fake news, bullies and a divided America. Beautiful photography to boot. 4.5/5*