Piercing too often gets lost in the fog of its deranged characters, but just as frequently transforms their lunacy into a heightened form of escapist entertainment. In a movie where everyone’s crazy, “Piercing” makes their malady infectious.
Buoyed by a brilliant transformation by Christian Bale, it offers a smart and detailed overview of Cheney’s elaborate ruse to exploit the country’s highest authority, but undercuts its authority with crass and often clunky humor that overstates the nature of Cheney’s villainy. Lame jokes just get in the way when the bad guys are hiding in plain sight.
This slick and involving sequel finds Adonis continuing to work through the weight of his father’s death in the ring, follows all the familiar motions revived with Creed. But in the context of this resilient franchise, the movie hits each beat with the calculated precision of its tireless fighter.
Amazing Grace is soulful ear candy. But Franklin’s sweaty, impassioned delivery, which galvanizes her audiences with an electric charge, extends her awe-inspiring musical convictions beyond religious euphoria. It’s a rousing portrait of creativity as a unifying force.
Stan & Ollie salutes an under-appreciated comedy duo while exploring the hardships of fading into the limelight; appropriately, the movie itself is rather forgettable even as the actors deliver brilliant performances in every scene.
As Hold the Dark sputters to an unsatisfying finale, Wright’s character promises to explain everything that came before. The movie’s great punchline is that he’ll never be able to sort it all out — and we’re right there with him, reeling from a disquieting saga that has no patience for anyone in need easy answers, but keen on leaving us gasping for breath.
It’s an obvious but enjoyable period piece — and a throwback to another era of Hollywood filmmaking, resurrected in the 21st century with two of the best actors working today, who elevate this didactic form of storytelling above the market standard for schmaltz.
More impressionistic than the searing intellectualism of his last work, Monrovia, Indiana at once demonstrates Wiseman’s formidable cinematic capabilities while posing a number of tantalizing questions about the community at its center.
Hill’s story suggests equal parts “Freaks and Geeks,” “Kids,” and the adolescent-focused narratives of British director Shane Meadows, but Hill cribs from these precedents with a confidence that injects this lively snapshot of skateboarding reprobates with fresh confidence.
If Beale Street Could Talk stalls about halfway through with less involving developments and stilted roles for supporting characters...but it always regains its footing with another entrancing observation.
Ultimately, Widows works as well as it does due to the way McQueen juggles substance with entertainment value to such eager subversive ends. The movie engages with topics as complex as sexism, police brutality, and interracial marriage, but it still delivers on the car chases and gunplay.