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Movie review: “Pitch Perfect 3”

If anybody actually asked for another Pitch Perfect movie, then they absolutely deserve what they got: a tone-deaf three-quel more thinly plotted than a grade-school revival of The Music Man as produced by Terrence Malick. The first installment a surprise hit that coasted on a novel combination of savvy music design and an affable cast … Continue reading

Movie review: “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle”

Much like the under-appreciated Zathura: A Space Adventure, writer-director Jake Kasdan’s Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is a spiritual sequel to Joe Johnston’s 1995 classic Jumanji, rather than a reboot or a remake. It pays mild homage to its predecessor while charting its own course with a solid, if obvious, spin on the premise. It’s a pleasant … Continue reading

Movie review: “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”

Fans who felt that The Force Awakens played it safe or skewed too close to the original Star Wars films will find much to like about The Last Jedi — if they go into it with an open mind and willingness to step into uncharted terrain. There’s a moment in the trailer (and also the … Continue reading

Movie review: “The Shape of Water”

It’s a classic romantic premise: star-crossed lovers from different worlds meet cute, fall in love, and struggle to be together in a world intent on keeping them apart. Granted, the star-crossed lovers in Guillermo del Toro’s The Shape of Water are a mute cleaning woman and a fish-man, but whatever — it still works. Leave it … Continue reading

Movie review: “Darkest Hour”

Darkest Hour is one of those rare biopics that, for the most part, breaks free of formula to deliver an intriguing portrait of a complex and controversial figure. Similar to Phyllida Lloyd’s The Iron Lady, it pins its hopes on its central performance (by Gary Oldman at his chameleonic best). Whereas that film tried to … Continue reading

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