While director Rupert Wyatt's film has a handful of things going for it -- alien invaders, bursts of action, sociopolitical subtext, a stern-faced John Goodman -- it is missing one key element: a soul.
Director Robert Rodriguez and his crew do a magnificent job of world-creating, thanks to impressive technical wizardry. Actress Rosa Salazar also brings the lead character to life with sweet (though lethal) charm...It struggles under the weight of the rangy, multi-pronged narrative before effectively cheating moviegoers by leaving them with a cliffhanger ending.
Mary Poppins is Mary Poppins; magic is what she does best. And magic is precisely what she delivers in a film that is -- since we're borrowing so much from the 1964 original -- nothing short of supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.
We get what is easily the most personal and intimate film of Cuarón's career to date. His Roma is a movie with a clear and distinct setting but one that boasts universal appeal. It's also built around a relatively small, narrowly focused story -- but one that deserves to be seen on as big a screen as possible.
An effort to spin high art out of a guilty-pleasure cult classic, this new Suspiria is -- like the original -- off-the-charts bonkers. But it’s also off-the-charts unpleasant, a cold, hard-to-embrace slog made up of mostly of stomach-turning moments of body horror interrupted by long stretches of stylish but mind-numbing pretension.
The result is a simple film -- one that doesn’t try to do too much from a story standpoint, perhaps to its detriment -- but one that has a definite sense of time and place. Every step of the way, it feels honest and genuine. In this case, that makes all the difference.
While the improvised interplay of the talented cast -- especially between Hart and Haddish -- help keep things moving along, watching Night School ends up largely being an exercise in waiting for something genuinely inspired to happen. It never does.
As for that murder scene, it's undoubtedly the part of the film that will get people talking the most. Clearly and meticulously taking its cues from the widely circulated photos of the crime scene, it is dramatic, it is attention-getting and it is memorable. It is, in other words, everything that the rest of Lizzie is not.
Even if Demange has a tendency to go on too long about details that don't really matter to the narrative while shortchanging those that do, he peppers White Boy Rick with enough resonant moments, and flashes of humor, to keep it on the rails, chugging forward to the inevitable train wreck.
In addition to being the rare modern romantic comedy that manages to nail both the "romantic" and the "comedy" with equal aplomb, Juliet, Naked is also a wonderful, welcome late-summer fling, the kind that can be enjoyed with no regrets and no apologies before harsh reality resumes once more.