BOFCA REVIEW ROUND-UP: 10/24/2014

john-wick

JOHN WICK

“For all its B-movie pulp bravado, JOHN WICK – a rather absurdly entertaining comeback vehicle for the preternaturally youthful Keanu Reeves – is best looked at not as an action movie, but as a dance picture.” – Sean Burns, Movie Mezzanine

“With JOHN WICK, we see that maybe Keanu Reeves hasn’t seen the last of quality movies after all.” – Jaskee Hickman, The Movie Picture Show

“Sometimes you laugh with it. Sometimes you laugh at it. Either way, you’ll have a hell of a time …” - John Black, Boston Event Guide

“…the film is a predictable but excellently executed mix of hand to hand combat and bullets flying while the body count piles up.” – Deirdre Crimmins, All Things Horror

“…an entertaining action film which seems to be taking place in an alternate universe.” – Daniel M. Kimmel, North Shore Movies

“The intricate action scenes are staged mostly in awesome, seemingly uninterrupted master shots with minimal editing from other angles.” – Tim Estiloz, Boston Examiner

“Far from apologizing for its reliance on the well-worn action movie conventions from which it’s cobbled together, JOHN WICK revels in them.” – Kilian Melloy, Edge Boston

 

birdman_aBIRDMAN

“A mix of SUNSET BOULEVARD and the recent Robin Wright film THE CONGRESS, BIRDMAN takes an introspective look at an actor’s career and transforms it into a savage Hollywood critique.” – Monica Castillo, Movie Mezzanine

“It’s wildly funny, thrilling, and heartbreaking, cutting deep into our hopes, fears, and need to matter in a world awash in consumerism, and just too damn much of everything.” – Joyce Kulhawik, Joyce’s Choices

“What you get from BIRDMAN more than anything is top shelf acting all the way around.” – Jaskee Hickman, The Movie Picture Show

 

13914-2DEAR WHITE PEOPLE

“DEAR WHITE PEOPLE is a peeved film, a touching film, a thoughtful film, and a funny film all at the same time, but structurally it’s an exercise in developing tension.” – Andy Crump, Paste Magazine

“…an empathetic exploration of both how difficult it is to navigate this paradoxical new world and the burden that “otherness” can inflict.” – Inkoo Kang, The Wrap

“There’s hardly a straight-through plot here; instead, we open and close with moments from a climactic blackface-party-slash-”race war,” with numerous preceding incidents involving the participants of said war filling the time in between. ” – Jake Mulligan, Movie Mezzanine

 

Whiplash-5547.cr2WHIPLASH

“The movie is a sleek machine that works you over and bats you around until the climax incites the audience into the kind of frenzy I haven’t seen in an auditorium since Rocky beat Drago. It’s viscerally thrilling, and distressingly hollow.” – Sean Burns, Spliced Personality

“While the casting and characterizations mesh perfectly, and the movie creates an indelible atmosphere of creative foment and psychic disrepair, the last act loses the very discipline Fletcher embodies.” - Kilian Melloy, Edge Boston

“Good music, great acting and an interesting approach to a film about music makes WHIPLASH a winner in my book.” – Jaskee Hickman, The Movie Picture Show

 

maxresdefault (2)OUIJA

“If Hasbro want to sell us advertisements, they’re going to need to be better than this.” – Jake Mulligan, Edge Boston

“..this breaks no new ground, but it bumps along at a steady pace, providing the requisite scares and laughs along the way.” – Daniel M. Kimmel, North Shore Movies

“The plot barely limps along down a completely uninspired path. The film takes itself way too seriously, and yet is horribly boring for long stretches of time.” – Deirdre Crimmins, All Things Horror

 

theirishpub6372THE IRISH PUB

“… an endearing, affectionate snapshot of a fading way of life, of places where strangers from ages eighteen to eighty can still stop for a friendly chat on their way home from wherever, taking comfort in conversation and company.” – Sean Burns, North Shore Movies

 

BOFCA REVIEW ROUND-UP: 10/17/2014


_1404238155FURY

“This is a film about men who have lost their bearings in the tumult of conflict, and who only regain them by forming an anchor out of upheaval and chaos.” - Kilian Melloy, Kal’s Movie Blog

“… a solid World War II drama that has some original flourishes as it covers familiar tropes about the madness of war.” – Daniel M. Kimmel, North Shore Movies

“The best than can be said about FURY is that it eventually will fun to watch on Blu-ray so you can skip the acting and just watch the action.” – John Black, Boston Event Guide

“…FURY is a bloody war film that has no desire to soften things up for the people who may not be able to stomach too much brutality.” – Jaskee Hickman, The Movie Picture Show

“Sure enough, after an exceedingly promising first hour and change, FURY devolves into a fetid pile of self-aggrandizing macho horseshit – wholeheartedly embracing every dumbass blaze-of-glory cliché the film had thus far studiously avoided.” – Sean Burns, Spliced Personality

“At its heart, though, it’s an ugly, hypocritical piece of jingoistic macho-porn that made me sick to my stomach through its depiction of traumatized, American protagonists who’ve become morally desensitized to the atrocities of war.” - Charlie Nash, Edge Boston

 

-ce507bb7-230d-42d9-892c-7b8a4bf480d9ST VINCENT

“As Vincent, Bill Murray successfully handles the weight of this film as well as you could hope for, and does so in a way that audiences will mostly enjoy.” – Jaskee Hickman, The Movie Picture Show

 

life_a (1)THE BOOK OF LIFE

“Sure, THE BOOK OF LIFE could have been tighter and more coherent, but there’s no way it could be any more sincere.” - Andy Crump, In Review Online

“THE BOOK OF LIFE navigates this cultural dichotomy beautifully with its narrative approach, reverent attention to detail, and colorful characters and settings that pop off the screen.” – Monica Castillo, Movie Mezzanine

Ice Cube has made a career being angry on film …  Here, he actually sounds happy and full of joy, and it’s a beautiful thing to hear.” – John Black, Boston Event Guide

“From the animated wooden characters to the colorful depiction of Mexican mythology–new territory for Hollywood–the film is endlessly inventive.” – Daniel M. Kimmel, North Shore Movies

 

Film Title: The Best Of MeTHE BEST OF ME

“…like traditional pornography, “The Best of Me” has no purpose other than to get a specific reaction…” - Daniel M. Kimmel, North Shore Movies

 

 

 

 

BOFCA REVIEW ROUND-UP: 10/10/2014

images (1)THE JUDGE

“As much as the film relies on the Hank/Downey charm, it retains a skepticism of its best asset, especially when it comes to women.” – Inkoo Kang, The Wrap

“If the Oscars were a third grade social studies class, The Judge would be the kid who always raises his hand fastest but consistently gets the answer wrong.” – Kristofer Jenson, Dig Boston

“Surrounded by a top-notch supporting cast, this is an acting duel between Robert Downey, Jr. and Robert Duvall. The result is a draw, which is another way of saying that the audience wins.” – Daniel M. Kimmel, North Shore Movies

“The Daddy Issues run thick in this movie; none of the boys ever mention Mom again after she’s planted in the ground. They spend the evening of her funeral doing shots at the local bar and telling stories about their father — who apparently makes even his children address him as ‘The Judge.’” – Sean Burns, Spliced Personality

“Perhaps Downey the producer should have fired the editor, or at least let one of the other producers or director David Dobkin trim things a little.” – David Riedel, Santa Fe Reporter

THE JUDGE is an okay movie that does some things well enough for me not to say that it’s average or below.” – Jaskee Hickman, The Movie Picture Show

 

alexALEXANDER AND THE TERRIBLE, HORRIBLE, NO GOOD, VERY BAD DAY

“There are some solid laughs, a dearth of fart jokes, and Carell and Garner have enough energy to make everything passable, if not great. Again, ALEXANDER could be better, but it could also be a hell of a lot worse.” – David Riedel, Santa Fe Reporter

“This isn’t the sort of movie that really demands devoted scrutiny or requires any heavy lifting from critics or audiences; it’s there, and if you’re a ten-year-old (particularly if you’re a younger or middle child), the film’s combination of pee jokes, physical gags and parental comeuppance will probably steamroll you.” – Andy Crump, Paste Magazine

“For someone who is, say, nine or ten, this should be hilarious.” – Daniel M. Kimmel, North Shore Movies

 

Dracula UntoldDRACULA UNTOLD

“…it suffers from the problems of all reboots that start with an origin story: since we know where it’s going, there’s got to be a lot of stuff to grab our attention. ” – Daniel M. Kimmel, North Shore Movies

“Like all big movies these days, DRACULA UNTOLD is set up to spawn sequels.” - Kilian Melloy, Edge Boston

“It’s a PG-13 vampire movie. How good can it be?” – John Black, Boston Event Guide

 

29-kill-the-messenger

KILL THE MESSENGER

“KILL THE MESSENGER is a film that has the potential to move you in a multitude of ways as a viewer looking for amature film with something to say.” – Jaskee Hickman, The Movie Picture Show

“This is pungent stuff, but a similar case was portrayed far more vividly in Michael Mann’s THE INSIDER – a movie that Cuesta and company obviously watched more than once in their preparations.” – Sean Burns, North Shore Movies

 

13888-1THE OVERNIGHTERS

“…so sketchy is the material as it’s presented here that finally it’s hard to know whether Pastor Reinke is a modern saint throwing himself mightily against apathy and social neglectfulness, or a whack job in his own right…” - Kilian Melloy, Edge Boston

 

 

photo-main (1)ART AND CRAFT

“We just don’t learn how Landis creates his meticulous forgeries – although watching the process will leave you gobsmacked – but we spend a lot of time getting to know the man and the reasons he does what he does.” – John Black, Boston Event Guide

BOFCA REVIEW ROUND-UP: 10/03/2014

GONE GIRLlead_large

“It’s wildly over-the-top, sadistically funny, and relentlessly entertaining, but it’s never pleasant. In fact, a majority of it is downright cruel.” – Charlie Nash, Edge Boston

“GONE GIRL is a crazy ride that shows us how to make a mainstream movie something special in this day and age.” – Jaskee Hickman, The Movie Picture Show

“….one of sharpest dissections of a dysfunctional marriage since WHO’S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF?” – Daniel M. Kimmel, North Shore Movies

“Not since Glenn Close boiled the family bunny in FATAL ATTRACTION has Hollywood given the Big Screen a more fierce, frightening, and fabulous femme fatale than Rosamund Pike’s brilliant performance as Amy Dunne in GONE GIRL.” – John Black, Boston Event Guide

“What could have potentially been a feminist manifesto mutates into something ripped out of a misogynist’s or Men’s Rights Activist (MRA)’s warped fantasy.” – Megan Kearns, Bitch Flicks

“Don’t worry about whether you’ll figure out who’s telling the truth or who’s lying; everybody’s lying.” – David Riedel, Santa Fe Reporter

“How well these characters can manipulate their stories to control what people think is the name of the game and the heart of the movie.” – Joyce Kulhawik, Linked In

“GONE GIRL is one propulsive piece of work, with scene transitions always cutting half a second before you expect them to (even the fade-outs occur at lightning speed) barreling through a whole lotta plot and allowing space for some weird grace notes.” – Sean Burns, Spliced Personality

 

annabelleANNABELLE

“Annabelle doesn’t come close to offering enough scares or quality to make most of us care about the story that it’s telling.” – Jaskee Hickman, The Movie Picture Show

“If you can identify with John and Mia–who seem to be named for the actors who played the lead couple in ROSEMARY’S BABY –then this is a movie that will have you on edge.” – Daniel M. Kimmel, North Shore Movies

“The film has a good sprinkling of campy-awareness, but never chooses the laugh over the scare. Certain musical decisions and camera movements make it clear that you are allowed to be having some fun with it.” – Deirdre Crimmins, All Things Horror

“In fairness, there are a limited number of ways in which a demonic doll can be frightening, particularly when said doll looks like it was made in Evil Co.’s nightmare factory, on an assembly line manned by Satanists.” – Andy Crump, Movie Mezzanine

“Though it’s not without concessions to formula, a sheen of glamour and a stab at real drama distinguish this persistently spooky tale of one woman’s private helter-skelter.” – Inkoo Kang, The Wrap

“When it comes to paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren, the further a movie moves away from the “true” story as documented by these proven frauds, the better it gets.” – Kristofer Jenson, C-Ville Weekly

“Leonetti just keeps throwing shots of the doll into the frame to add ‘edge’ to the film, and it’s an edge that dulls very quickly from overuse. ” – John Black, Boston Event Guide

 

men-women-and-children-movieMEN, WOMEN, & CHILDREN

“This has got to be the crotchetiest, most alarmist movie ever directed by a 36-year-old man, and would probably be the worst film released all year had Jason Reitman not also made LABOR DAY.” – Sean Burns, Movie Mezzanine

 

 

THE GOOD LIETHE GOOD LIE

“The shameless way (the refugees) get treated by the script – as sort of cartoon noble savages that the White Man has to rescue — is embarrassing to watch.” – John Black, Boston Event Guide

“In a rare Hollywood bid for authenticity, three of the main protagonists were Sudanese Lost Boys themselves, and Oceng was the child of Sudanese refugees. They have just as much a personal stake in the story as their characters.” – Monica Castillo, Paste Magazine

 

 

zero-theoremTHE ZERO THEOREM

“The coda provides the ultimate punctuation point to Gilliam’s commentary, but he leaves clarity in the margins and forces the audience to wade through his abstractions.”  - Andy Crump, Movie Mezzanine

“What holds THE ZERO THEOREM back most of all, however, is precisely what made some of Gilliam’s most standout films shine; when he directs on pure instinct, he is able to cut to the emotional core of situations that might appear absurd on the surface yet peel back to reveal some element of emotional insight.” – Kristofer Jenson, Dig Boston

“Watching Terry Gilliam’s THE ZERO THEOREM is like taking a derivative tour through his past movies. Giant chaotic office like in BRAZIL? Check. Dystopian future like in TWELVE MONKEYS? Check. Beautiful, unavailable woman like in BRAZIL? Check. Main character lost in his own world like in THE FISHER KING? Check.” - David Riedel, Santa Fe Reporter

 

hero_Notebook-2014-1THE NOTEBOOK

“Depravity, cruelty and nihilism are on full display, and it’s completely unnecessary (and this is coming from someone who can defend Srdjan Spasojevic’s A SERBIAN FILM).” - David Riedel, SF Reporter

 

 

art-Tracks-Movie-1-620x349TRACKS

“The widescreen cinematography, captured on film by Mandy Walker and inspired by Smolan’s photographs, demands to be seen on the biggest screen possible; catch this one in the theater if you can.” – Brett Michel, The Improper Bostonian

 

 

 

 

 

BOFCA REVIEW ROUND-UP: 09/26/2014


THE EQUALIZER
1194427-equalizer

THE EQUALIZER contains the mature rated kind of violence that one would hope to see in a modern-day action movie that isn’t restricted by the all too common PG-13 rating.” – Jaskee Hickman, The Movie Picture Show

 

 

HECTOR AND THE SEARCH FOR HAPPINESSsimon-pegg-hector_3006210b

“Is it just class envy that makes Stiller’s thrill-seeking expeditions in WALTER MITTY and Julia Roberts‘ hedonistic adventures in EAT PRAY LOVE such a dependable trigger for instinctive eye-rolling? Hector doesn’t make it any easier to like him when his midlife crisis takes the form of extreme wanderlust and he books flights to Asia, then Africa, then America.” – Inkoo Kang, The Wrap

“…despite the fact that the premise of the movie is endearing enough, and Simon Pegg, who I’ve adored since his breakout role as the title character in Edgar Wright’s millennial cult-hit SHAUN OF THE DEAD, stars as the title character of the film, the execution of HECTOR AND THE SEARCH FOR HAPPINESS is about as elegant as watching a car drive off of a cliff.” – Charlie Nash, Edge Boston

“Too much formulaic watering down keeps HECTOR from self-actualizing its own narrative.” – Monica Castillo, Movie Mezzanine

 

ALL-IS-BY-MY-SIDE-clipJIMI: ALL IS BY MY SIDE

“If you are a fan of movies that are so bad they’re good, then get ready to watch the Mommie Dearest of rock movies.” – John Black, Boston Event Guide

 

 

GOOD PEOPLEgood-people-movie-still

“GOOD PEOPLE is, in short, a bad movie, but that’s not its cardinal sin. Bad movies, after all, can offer a few laughs or the occasional cinematic innovation. Far worse than being a run-of-the-mill misfire, this movie takes the rare distinction of being a total waste of time.” – Kilian Melloy, Edge Boston