It’s an innocuous and cuddly film, even with Caine holding forth. It’s hard to tell if he transcends the role as written, or if he merely seized on the one shred of the screenplay worth showcasing. In any case, Caine brings his own shine to this rather dull affair, and shows again that he’s not ready to go gentle into that good night.
Schrader’s characters are haunted (please see “First Reformed” if you haven’t). They’re also deeply moral, not in a dime-store virtue kind of way but in the sense that they struggle mightily to do the right thing. In the end they’re painfully human, which is why they keep resonating after the lights go up.
The new Netflix documentary Bob Ross: Happy Accidents, Betrayal & Greed, produced by husband-and-wife team Melissa McCarthy and Ben Falcone, paints a picture of naked opportunism that shattered Ross’ legacy. It’s the story of how a man became an industry, and how his family was gradually, systematically left out in the cold.
Based on Elizabeth Brundage’s 2016 novel All Things Cease to Appear, Things Heard & Seen is a slow burn, and it spends a fair amount of time strewing elements of other ghostly tales throughout the premises. But then it takes a turn, those elements gel, and the characters come into sharper focus.