There’s a fatally miscast lead (Jack Huston, you are no Charlton Heston), cut-rate special effects, reams of eyeball-glazing dialogue, and a schmaltzy “inspirational” script that pointlessly alters the story in ways that make absolutely no sense.
The first “Independence Day’’ was a lot of fun, with a great lines and cutting-edge special effects. It was much imitated, so the sequel plays like a faded, eighth-generation copy with a cast that’s shooting blanks when it comes to humor.
If there has ever been a better voice performance in an animated film than Ellen DeGeneres’ in Pixar’s wonderful sequel Finding Dory, I sure can’t think of it. Her tour de force even surpasses Robin Williams in “Aladdin.”
Jude Law gives arguably the worst performance of his career as Wolfe in Genius, the ham-fisted directing debut of noted British theater figure Michael Grandage, bombastically adapted by John Logan (“Gladiator’’) from a biography by A. Scott Berg.
The Conjuring 2 belongs to Wilson and Farmiga as the sincere, loving, slightly square Warrens, with Wan tightening the screws for a rousing series of cliffhangers that should have audiences screaming. Expect another sequel for sure.
Unfortunately, this ultra-glossy romantic drama derived from a best seller twists into very dark territory — a drastic tonal shift that neither its stars nor debuting director, Thea Sharrock, a respected stage veteran, manage with dramatic credibility.
Smartphone apps don’t particularly lend themselves well to political allegory or satire. But that’s precisely what the makers of this fitfully amusing animated adaptation of the once-popular game seem to be fruitlessly attempting.
Cross “Dog Day Afternoon’’ with “The Big Short’’ and throw in a dash of “Network’’ and you’ve got Money Monster, a clever financial thriller with comic overtones that’s a solid investment of your time thanks to stellar work by George Clooney and Julia Roberts.