The Drive Thru Review is that work-in-progress compilation of the year's reviews that I just couldn't quite get time to devote full reviews to. But fear not, for these short summary reviews are up and ready. Please pull forward...
Breathless: A Texas housewife turns murderess after discovering that her criminal husband was planning on keeping the take from a big robbery all to himself, but finds her options quickly shrinking as a concerned sheriff and a tenacious private detective show up determined to crack the case.
Director: Jesse Baget
Starring: Val Kilmer, Ray Liotta, Gina Gershon
Hilarious, gory, and oh-so-appealing on every level, this Coen Brothers-styled comedy by Jesse Baget keeps you watching in a way that so few other films could. It’s ingeniously written and marvelously paced. And, no, you can't predict where it's headed, I guarantee. This was one of my most satisfying viewing experiences of this year. And Gina Gershon is an absolute, toe-tingling sensation! A+
Paranormal Activity IV: It has been five years since the disappearance of Katie and Hunter, and a suburban family witness strange events in their neighborhood when a woman and a mysterious child move in.
Director: Henry Joost, Ariel Schulman
Starring: Katie Featherston, Kathryn Newton, Matt Shively
And it could be it five more years - or five hundred years - and we still couldn’t care less. Since the first spine-tingling movie (which wasn’t a great movie, but did scare us), each in the series has gone down hill a little further, but this doozie is more than a dud; it’s a bore, wrapped in irrelevance, that should come with guarantee not to cause nightmares. It’s not only slow, but totally devoid of scares or surprises even on a superficial level. At the beginning, we quickly tune out and don’t tune back in at any point along the way. This is easily one of the worst films of the year in that in does NOTHING that it sets out to do. F
Hotel Transylvania: Count Dracula, who operates a high-end resort away from the human world, goes into overprotective mode when a human boy discovers the resort and falls for the count’s teen-aged daughter.
Director: Genndy Tartakovsky
Starring: Adam Sandler (voice), Kevin James (voice), Andy Samberg (voice)
Animation | Comedy | Family
It starts to entertain us like a Halloween movie should, but then becomes a hip-hop, hyperactive, rapping vampire teen romance with no climax or thrills. This is how movies are these days--loud, clamorous, twitchy, and self-important. C-
The Odd Life of Timothy Green: A childless couple bury a wooden box in their backyard, containing all of their wishes for their would-be child. Soon, a child is born, but new arrival Timothy is not all that he appears to be.
Director: Peter Hedges
Starring: Jennifer Garner, Joel Edgerton, CJ Adams
Comedy | Drama | Fantasy
It’s supposed to be a comedy about two aspiring parents who seem to have gotten a wish come true, but in reality, it’s like something Stephen King would put out, something disturbing and not a little sappy. C-
Moonrise Kingdom: A pair of preteen lovers flee their New England town and head out to live in the woods, which causes a local search party and their troubled parents to fan out and find them.
Director: Wes Anderson
Starring: Jared Gilman, Kara Hayward, Bruce Willis, Edward Norton, Bill Murray
Comedy | Drama | Romance
It’s a whimsical work by Wes Anderson, alright, but it’s one of the most overrated movies this year. The humor is well-placed and the story is ardently written, but this tale of two preteens learning about themselves and each other is only a must-see for Wes Anderson fans or those who love any of the film’s stars. B-
Premium Rush: A bicycle courier in Manhattan must deliver a package across town, but is relentless pursued by a dirty cop for reasons he does not know.
Director: David Koepp
Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Michael Shannon, Dania Ramirez
Action | Thriller
It's a fairly entertaining action-thriller with a better first half than second, but will prove worth the watch for most viewers. Its sophomoric tone and ultimate lack of decisive writing that measures up to more mature audiences brings it down a notch. C+