Movie Review: Silence (2016)

Martin Scorsese’s new film Silence you probably won't go home talking about. It has none of the pizaz and flare of a great many of his other works, but it sure as hell tries hard.

The film, which Scorsese refers to as his "obsession," is the culmination of some 27 years of work. It is brought down to scale in this 159-minute film. Scorsese may or may not be hoping for an Oscar from it, for which Scorsese has been nominated at least a dozen times in the past and won once for his The Departed in 2007. 

Silence is based on a 1966 novel bearing the same name by a Japanese author named Shusaku Endo. It is based on historical events and takes place in the 17th-century. It brings us the story of two Portuguese Jesuit missionaries, "Rodrigues" (Andrew Garfield) and "Garrpe" (Adam Driver). They travel to Japan to track down their mentor, "Father Ferreira" (Liam Neeson) who reportedly has defected from the faith and is living as a Japanese.

Movie Review: A Monster Calls (2017)

A boy seeks the help of a tree monster to cope with his mother's terminal illness. In the coming-of-age genre, it stands out well. With Liam Neeson as the voice of the monster, we are invited on a fantasy journey that makes for great entertainment for the whole family.

"Conor O'Mally" (Lewis MacDougall) is going to live with his grandmother (Sigourney Weaver) because his mother (Felicity Jones) isn't doing well with the treatments she is receiving. And the doctors prognosis is not very good. Conor's dad (Toby Kebbell) is in America and can't see uprooting him and bringing him to the U.S. This causes more conflict in the vulnerable and impressionable mind of an 11-year-old boy.

Movie Review: Split (2017)

In Split, three girls are abducted by a man with 23 different personalities--make that 24 by the movie's end. James McAvoy is "Kevin Wendell Crumb" (and also "Dennis", "Mrs.Patricia", "Hedwig", "Barry", "Orwell", "Jade", and "the beast"). Mr. Crumb suffers from Disassociative Identity Disorder, or "Multipersonality Disorder" as it is sometimes called. He sees a shrink, "Dr. Karen Fletcher" (Betty Buckley) who, unlike the vast majority of the psychiatric community, believes that the condition is real.

And not only does she believe it is real, but that it is the beginning of a new stage in human evolution (this is the premise Shyamalan keeps coming back to all throughout the movie). Dr. Fletcher's evidence for believing these claims is discussed at length in the movie and introduced into various plot segments, suggesting, for instance, that some personalities are stronger physically, have different levels of cholesterol, and on and on the details go. M. Night Shyamalan's return to the big screen is not without a love for details, which the audience gets in spades!

Movie Review: War on Everyone (2017)

Terry Monroe (Alexander Skarsgård) and Bob Bolano (Michael Pena) are cops. They are the type of cops that bad guys have a run-in with and go away saying: “Who is worse? Me or those cops?” They are corrupt cops. That’s putting it lightly. It’s a crapshoot if their boss (Paul Reiser) and fellow officers on the department’s payroll are much better, but these cats were well on their way to being fired LONG before the events of this movie started.

Being unhappy with themselves and naturally impulsive by nature, they chase down every scummy drug-dealer, pimp, and kingpin they can find. They extort them and get rid of them, either by offing them or locking them up (usually the former), depending on how big of an offender they happen to be.

Movie Review: Monster Trucks (2017)

Monster Trucks is not so much about monster trucks (like lower-class, poverty-stricken white people living in trailer parks tend to admire), as it is about monsters living inside of trucks to make them run.

These octopi/dolphin-like creatures consume motor oil for sustenance, and for some reason, have the ability, kind of like a superpower, to apply torque to human wheels to make them go fast. Now if that sort of plot holds interest for you, then hey, go for it. I won't judge, I promise.

Movie Review: Patriots Day (2017)

Patriots Day -- did anyone by chance notice "patriot's" should have an apostrophe? 

Well, if you ask me, it doesn't matter. The movie, starring Mark Walhberg, Kevin Bacon, and John Goodman, brings us another made-for-TV movie. It is a dramatized version of the real-life event of the Boston Marathon Bombings of April 15, 2013. 

The movie's star is "Tommy Saunders" (Walhberg) who is a fictional add-in as a cop in the doghouse for an indiscretion committed in the department. But he is about to get out of the doghouse, we learn, after he injures his knee on a street assignment if he will but endure just one more day by helping out the department keep order in the marathon. His day shapes up to be more than he could see coming (but not that we could not see coming).

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