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Average User Score: 6.3Apr 16, 2019It’s refreshing to watch a film brimming with self-confidence – no need for elaborate CGI, no need for excessive carnage, for cartoonIt’s refreshing to watch a film brimming with self-confidence – no need for elaborate CGI, no need for excessive carnage, for cartoon characters or for dialogue that’s overwrought and over-written. “The Mustang” is a spare, almost austere, story, but one that captivates from start to finish. At a running time of ninety-six minutes, the movie has the self-confidence to fully develop a single story and stop when the story is done.
“The Mustang” is based on the Wild Horse Inmate Program, which exists currently in six states in the US. In this program, wild mustangs are brought to prisons, where prisoners are taught to care for the horses, bond with them and eventually get these magnificent wild animals to accept a saddle and human direction. After an intensive twelve-week program, these horses are sold at auction, often put to work with Border Patrol agents, local police departments or private owners. The revenue created from these sales makes the program self-sustaining.
In the hands of Writer/Director Laure de Clermont-Tonnerre, a French filmmaker making her feature film debut, this program also is a powerful metaphor. In the same way that the survival of these mustangs depends on the horses’ ability to accept changes in order to co-exist with encroaching civilization, so also must the inmates learn to modify their inclination to react violently whenever they feel threatened. This metaphor is drawn a little too directly at times, but that does not distract from the film’s powerful point.
The success of “The Mustang” is based on four elements. First, this film is based on an intelligent script that respects its audience. Roman Coleman, the film’s central character, is allowed to breathe, grow, learn and develop without constant exposition to make sure the audience is keeping up. Second, Belgian actor Matthias Schoenaerts as Coleman is fabulous. In his previous work (including 2012’s “Rust and Bone” and 2015’s “A Bigger Splash”), Schoenaerts has portrayed compelling, generally sympathetic characters. Here, he inhabits an initially unappealing character - a dead-eyed stare of indifference, a tendency toward impulsive violence, the brief statement “I’m not good with people” - while still keeping the interest and sympathy of the audience, no small feat. Third, the supporting cast is stellar. At age 82, Bruce Dern is excellent as the manager of the prison’s mustang program. In two short scenes, Connie Britton is compelling as the prison psychologist. Gideon Adlon, daughter of veteran actor Pamela Adlon, is equally good as Coleman’s daughter. Finally, the shots of the Nevada desert, integrated throughout the film, add a physical context that is simply breath-taking.
“The Mustang” is not a film for impatient viewers requiring instant gratification. Like many excellent films, it’s a slow burn that leaves a long-term impression.… Expand
Average User Score: 7.2Apr 2, 2019A couple of recent films “based on true events” have not compared favorably to their documentary competitors. With “RBG”/”On the Basis ofA couple of recent films “based on true events” have not compared favorably to their documentary competitors. With “RBG”/”On the Basis of Sex” and “Apollo 11/First Man,” for example, one wonders why the fictionalized versions of events were even made. “Hotel Mumbai” is a powerful exception.
Based on the 2009 documentary “Surviving Mumbai,” this film is relentless in its tension, angst and anguish. It chronicles the terror attacks in Mumbai in November, 2008, carried out by a group of Pakistani boys who were promised that their families would receive cash payments because of their ultimate sacrifice. These boys were trained and sent to their deaths by an unseen “Brother Bull” (a person never identified or caught) who orchestrates their every move through constant cell phone communications. During their rampage, twelve different sites in Mumbai were attacked, with the culminating event the occupation of the landmark Taj Mahal Hotel.
Director Anthony Maras, in his feature film debut, gives the viewer only the sketchiest of backgrounds about the terrorists and only limited insight into the backgrounds of those who became the object of their violence. Clearly, Maras, who also served as co-writer, wants this film to focus almost exclusively on the action taking place in the present. This intentional lack of character development also serves to even more effectively highlight the rare moments of humanity. As Arjun, a devoted hotel staffer, Dev Patel (2009’s “Slumdog Millionaire,” Oscar nominee for 2017s “Lion”) is particularly memorable. In one scene, he patiently explains the cultural significance of his pagri (Sikh turban) to an unnerved guest who thinks, because of his appearance, that he may be a terrorist, too.
A few scenes develop the thesis that this insane violence was not grounded in religious differences, but may be better understood in terms of class warfare. “Brother Bull” reminds his minions that the wealthy have left them behind. The hotel’s head chef (an excellent Anupam Kher) admonishes his staff regularly that “the guest is god.” In a particularly poignant moment, the boys/terrorists, mid-rampage, pause to marvel at a flush toilet.
While there is interesting subtext to ponder, the central focus is on the actions of the terrorists – all offered in consistently unflinching detail. Some have criticized the film for its excessive violence and for the insensitivity of releasing the film just after the mass shooting in New Zealand. However, for a film that effectively dramatizes the senselessness of indiscriminate violence, the timing seems just right.… Expand
Average User Score: 6.8Mar 23, 2019Perhaps “Gloria Bell” could more aptly be re-named “Lost in Translation.” Writer/Director Sebastian Lelio (2017 Oscar for Best ForeignPerhaps “Gloria Bell” could more aptly be re-named “Lost in Translation.” Writer/Director Sebastian Lelio (2017 Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film for “A Fantastic Woman”) has taken his 2013 Spanish-language film “Gloria,” originally set in Santiago, Chile, and updated the story in current-day Los Angeles. One wonders why.
It’s appropriate to applaud this film’s focus on mature adults, particularly given the recent steady diet of superhero films and an obsession with films emphasizing teens and young adults. The life of a 50-something divorcee navigating middle-adulthood would seem to offer many topics worth exploring. Unfortunately, “Gloria” has no big ideas to communicate. While we’re teased with brief observations about financial insecurity, the loneliness of divorce and the inevitable complexities of family, “Gloria” offers only a series of glancing blows, rather than taking a stand or making a point.
Our protagonist, Gloria Bell (Julianne Moore), is a study in contradictions. In many facets of her life, she is all diligent earnestness and perky optimism: consoling a distraught co-worker, babysitting for a son with an absent wife, providing emotional support for a daughter preparing to move to Sweden to marry a big-wave surfer, coping with the noises of an upstairs neighbor in total meltdown. Soon enough, we learn that, beneath all this responsibility, Gloria is a woman of simple pleasures: “If the world blows up, I hope I go down dancing.” You’d think a woman with this clear-eyed outlook would find a partner equally sensible. Instead, Gloria gets saddled with Arnold (John Turturro), who aspires to a soulful romance, but is inextricably tethered to an ex-wife and two daughters who collectively make Glenn Close’s character in “Fatal Attraction” appear emotionally independent. He takes every phone call, meets every emotional need, all at the expense of his relationship with Gloria. If only he’d read “Co-Dependent No More.”
Gloria’s motivations and feelings, too, are less than self-evident. When alone, she seems to alternate between comfortable aloneness and feeling uncomfortably lonely. Similarly, she seems self-contained and self-reliant when helping others, while projecting a subterranean neediness when trying to move forward with Arnold.
What is remarkable about “Gloria” is Moore in the title role. She takes a character who is filled with internal inconsistencies and infuses her with a life force that consistently holds our attention and our compassion. Over the years, Moore’s skill has made us care about a variety of unlikeable characters, from the shrewish wife in Robert Altman’s 1993 “Short Cuts” to a porn star in “Boogie Nights” (1997) to a predatory, incestuous mother in “Savage Grace” (2002). In “Gloria,” she’s done something even more difficult: she’s taken a muddled character and made her unremarkable story compelling viewing.… Expand
Average User Score: 8.6Mar 16, 2019“Apollo 11” is a powerful demonstration that less is more. It’s a tribute to those who crafted this documentary that a NASA mission - whose“Apollo 11” is a powerful demonstration that less is more. It’s a tribute to those who crafted this documentary that a NASA mission - whose outcome is so well-known (spoiler alert: these guys land on the moon) - could hold an audience’s attention without resorting to any sort of contrivance (like Ryan Gosling’s angst-filled brooding, I’m looking at you “First Man”).
This is unadorned documentary film-making at its finest. There’s no voiceover by James Earl Jones. No “we were there” interviews. No contemporary astrophysicists or scientists giving us context. Director Todd Douglas Miller (2014 Emmy for “Dinosaur 13”) has had the self-confidence to simply go through an abundance of restored 65mm film and over 11,000 hours of rediscovered audio recordings and stitch together a powerful, compelling narrative.
Without seeing this movie, you may find it hard to imagine that this story could be either emotionally compelling or visually interesting. If you’re familiar with the TV broadcast footage from the lunar landing in its grainy black-and white, it’s even harder to believe this movie could hold your interest. But it does. Actually, some of the color footage is breathtaking. Composer Matt Morton’s powerful underscoring contributes to the overall mood.
What makes this documentary possible is the vast number of cameras that were deployed for every step of this mission. At lift-off, we’re given an amazingly close-up perspective of the power of the Saturn rockets. When parts of the rocket are jettisoned during the flight, there is up-close footage, including an amazing perspective from inside a discarded booster rocket that shows the capsule carrying the astronauts speeding away. On the moon, a color camera taking images one frame per second has created some shots that are simply breath-taking. One of Miller’s most effective themes is the sheer magnitude of this space mission - in size, in scope and in the scale of this undertaking. The film opens with a close-up of the giant crawler-transporter that moves the 363-foot rocket onto the launch pad. (This transport vehicle weighs over 6 million pounds and requires 30 technicians, crew and drivers to operate. Some claim it’s so large it has its own weather.) It’s an excellent metaphor for the size of this undertaking. This archival footage also captures the scope of the audience - the tens of thousands of spectators assembled in the area because they wanted to see lift-off with their own eyes. (We’re also shown, without commentary, that the hair styles and clothing choices of the late 60’s were a series of self-inflicted, unfortunate events.)
A second powerful theme is the self-deprecating understatement of all involved. At liftoff, telemetry reported that Buzz Aldrin’s heart rate was what many people experience while sleeping. When Michael Collins’ respiratory sensors stopped functioning, Collins assured Mission Control he would inform them immediately, if he stopped breathing. In its own way, this film is just as interesting as the latest films based on comic book heroes. “Apollo 11” chronicles compellingly one of the “giant leaps” in human history.… Expand
Average User Score: 7.4Mar 3, 2019I couldn’t get past the realization that, ultimately, “Fighting with My Family” is World Wrestling Entertainment’s (WWE’s) tribute to itself.I couldn’t get past the realization that, ultimately, “Fighting with My Family” is World Wrestling Entertainment’s (WWE’s) tribute to itself. The film’s Executive Producer is Dwayne Johnson, a WWE alum, with WWE Studios holding a major producing credit. This lends the film a certain perspective. For example, the viewer learns that WWE is not fake, it is “fictionalized.” One of the secondary characters quietly shares that she has moved on to WWE from modeling to “make things better for my family.” We learn that Johnson, who makes a cameo, rose to superstardom (he’s the best-paid actor in Hollywood) from a humble wrestling family.
The movie is based on the 2012 documentary “The Wrestlers: Fighting with My Family” that chronicled the rise of Paige, real name Saraya Bevis, from a low-level professional wrestler in Norwich, England, to a major role in WWE. Early on, we see Paige (Florence Pugh, so compelling in last year’s AMC three-part “Little Drummer Girl”) wrestling before modest local crowds. After a tryout in London, she’s selected to participate in NXT, WWE’s developmental level (I’d like to buy a vowel). While at NXT, she struggles to compete against three physically stronger, more attractive female wrestlers. Life lesson: models and cheerleaders have feelings, too. Paige has a time of doubt and self-reflection. Paige realizes that WWE isn’t just her family’s goal for her, it’s what she wants as well. (I flashed back to Richard Gere’s “I got nowhere else to go” in “An Officer and a Gentleman.”) Paige gets physically stronger, becomes a supportive teammate and embraces her underdog, outsider status. Throughout this process, Vince Vaughn, Paige’s coach, mentor and occasional therapist, tries with occasional success to channel the tough but fair drill sergeant from every military movie ever made.
Just before the closing credits, we are told that Paige is a key leader of the “women’s revolution” at WWE. Oh? How’s that? Nothing in the movie addresses the relative role of women in WWE, good or bad. We’re also informed that Paige remains the youngest-ever Diva’s Champion. If WWE is admittedly scripted, how is this an accomplishment?
“Fighting …” is not without merit. It’s at its best when it focuses on Paige’s eccentric, wrestling-obsessed family. As Paige’s father with a Mohawk, Nick Frost is fabulous. You may remember him as Don in the movie version of “Kinky Boots” (2005) or working with Simon Pegg in “Shaun of the Dead,” (2004) the first rom-zom-com. Lena Headey seems to be enjoying herself as Paige’s mother. Some of the plot is actually sweet, sincere and inspiring. For years, the family has befriended neighborhood kids, offering free wrestling lessons to keep them off the streets and away from drugs. Paige’s brother even mentored a blind boy from the area who eventually became a professional wrestler. Had the film focused here, it could have joined an impressive list of films exploring the British working class experience, beginning with 1947’s “It Always Rains on Sunday” and moving to more current, excellent films like “My Brother the Devil” (2012). “Fighting with my Family” isn’t awful. This is a movie with a good heart and a streak of kind sentimentality. It’s just not terribly original. If you want to explore the biography of someone emerging from modest circumstances to success in a non-traditional field, watch “Billy Elliott.”… Expand
Average User Score: 5.7Feb 23, 2019You have to give the writers of “Isn’t it Romantic” some credit. It takes courage to offer several minutes of exposition early on about theYou have to give the writers of “Isn’t it Romantic” some credit. It takes courage to offer several minutes of exposition early on about the flaws of romantic comedy and then go out and make a rom-com. Fortunately, the story by actor-turned-writer Erin Cardillo, co-written with Dana Fox and Katie Silberman, doesn’t take itself too seriously, totally willing to be self-referential, self-aware and even self-deprecating.
The set-up is more than a little formulaic. Natalie (Rebel Wilson) collides with a girder after fighting off a purse-snatcher, knocking herself out and causing her to wake up in a parallel universe. The resulting hallucination provides her with a gorgeous new apartment, a compliant pet, a sexless dalliance with Liam Hemsworth (whose saxophone playing in the closing credits is priceless) and a stand-off with a supermodel over the man she loves. Plotting is not the strong point here. Along the way, there is madness, mayhem and more than a few laughs. Soon after waking up at the hospital, Natalie is informed that her clothes have been destroyed. The staff “puts together a few things,” and she walks out in a dress, hat and handbag identical to Julia Roberts’ iconic “Pretty Woman” wardrobe. When offered a ride to a weekend party in the Hamptons, she says, “You had me at hello-copter.” Natalie even launches into a profanity-laced tirade, only to have her offending words bleeped by a truck on the bridge overhead: “My life has become a motherf…[bleep] romantic comedy, and it’s rated PG.” When the world returns to normal, this merriment is capped off with Natalie’s rapturous exclamation, “New York is a **** again!” Perhaps most interesting of all is the catfight between Natalie and billboard model Isabella (Priyanka Chopra, Bollywood actress and Miss World 2000) over Josh (Adam DeVine, reprising his role as Wilson’s love interest from the first two “Pitch Perfect” installments). Their karaoke stand-off is completely over the top and thoroughly inspired. The plot doesn’t resolve as planned, with Natalie even offering a few hopeful observations about the merits of self-worth. You can almost hear the Stones singing: “You can’t always get what you want… But if you try sometime, you find you get what you need.”
“Isn’t It Romantic” opened to outsized expectations and stranger-than-fiction real-life parallels. After shooting for the movie concluded, Chopra married Nick Jonas and Hemsworth tied the knot with Miley Cyrus. This doesn’t mean that “Isn’t It Romantic” is the “Citizen Kane” of romantic comedies. But it is a clever, fun self-aware film, with a few laugh-out-loud moments, that navigates a formulaic landscape with a knowing wink and a nod.… Expand
Average User Score: 6.0Feb 19, 2019“Cold Pursuit” works at a lot of levels – on the ground, on mountain passes, in the air (the hang glider, really?!). It’s also a dark,“Cold Pursuit” works at a lot of levels – on the ground, on mountain passes, in the air (the hang glider, really?!). It’s also a dark, sophisticated send-up of the revenge genre. With a title presumably inspired by the trope that “revenge is a dish best served cold,” this film starts out as an exercise in paint-by-numbers, but then veers off the guardrails into something much more interesting.
As Nels Coxman, Liam Neeson appears arthritically convincing as a 66-year-old action figure (“Taken,” “Taken 2,” if only there had been “the road not taken”). Coxman is a simple man. His Open Road snowplow business makes travel between Kehoe, Colorado and the outside world generally passable. He’s even named “Man of the Year” for his efforts. When his son is murdered by minions from a Denver drug gang, Coxman goes totally off the rails, murdering three drug runners complicit in the act and picking a fight with the drug lord himself. There’s no establishment of how Coxman has developed his sudden prowess in fights or with firearms. (I relied on the new Captain Marvel trailer for inspiration.) Neeson makes up for these oversights by brooding persuasively.
Eventually, though, this film evolves from a formulaic revenge story to a dark comedy. The first clue is that after the first death, a card pops up, joltingly, with the name of the deceased, his nickname and a cross above the writing. The process is repeated with each new killing. After a particularly brutal showdown, there are more than a dozen names on the screen. The genre-bending doesn’t end there. In a resort hotel, a menacing gangster growls about what he might do to the hotel employee who has displeased him – with his brutal comments on Yelp. When Coxman’s young abductee requests a bedtime story, Coxman obligingly lies quietly beside his captive, reading the child the sales brochure for a new snowplow he recently purchased. At the end of the film, the cast is listed “in order of disappearance.”
This last bit is a deep bow to the original source material: the Norwegian film “In Order of Disappearance” (2014) starring Stellan Skarsgard. Much of the film has a Scandinavian sensibility, particularly since Norwegian director Hens Petter Moland has directed this film as well as the original.
“Cold Pursuit” is refreshing, sometimes exhilarating and a totally unexpected departure from the revenge genre. If “Taken” and “Fargo” had a lovechild, and the Coen brothers acted as midwives, this might be that movie. But be forewarned: there’s a lot more blood in “Cold Pursuit” than that wood chipper ever generated.… Expand
Average User Score: 4.7Feb 5, 2019“Serenity” deserves real interest and support. Not because it’s a perfect movie – very few are, this one certainly is not. It deserves“Serenity” deserves real interest and support. Not because it’s a perfect movie – very few are, this one certainly is not. It deserves attention for playing with genre stereotypes and nudging boundaries in a truly interesting way.
In 2013, Writer/Director Steven Knight was applauded for “Locke.” In that film, with the exception of the opening scene, all the action takes place inside a car during a long drive to London. In “Serenity,” Knight spends the first half of the movie putting a blockbuster cast through its paces to set up a fairly conventional film noir. He then spends the remainder turning the genre inside-out, offering a bit of existential introspection (do any of us truly know anything?) and providing some thoughts about the consequences of domestic violence.
Presumably because of the film’s lofty aspirations, Knight has been able to assemble a powerhouse cast. Baker Dill (Matthew McConaughey) is a dissolute fishing boat captain, traumatized by war and seeking solace at the end of the world. Soon enough, his ex-wife (Anne Hathaway) arrives with a typically noirish proposition: if Dill will take her abusive husband (played powerfully by Jason Clarke) on a one-way fishing expedition, Dill can have the husband’s $10 million in ill-gotten gains. Diane Lane makes an odd appearance as a very-part-time love interest and neighborhood watch lady.
McConaughey’s performance, which carries the film, is a slow burn. Early on, he is portrayed as a man burying his anger, trauma, resentment and pain in booze, with all the enigmatic enthusiasm he brings to selling Lincoln Navigators. As the plot develops (thickens, curdles, insert your own verb here), McConaughey’s intensity ratchets up appropriately, to a very satisfying climax.
Busting genres is not for the faint of heart. Professional critics have generally savaged this film. In my view, they are wrong. This is a very imperfect film. Beyond Baker Dill, none of the characters are developed in a meaningful way. The existential “reveal” in the middle of the film offers an array of thematic options, none of which are pursued fully. Despite its failures, this movie deserves a thoughtful, engaged audience. These days, films waste too much time playing it safe - too many superheroes, too many mind-numbing sequels. There are too few films that, like “Serenity,” are willing to take real chances.… Expand
Average User Score: 7.3Feb 1, 2019From the 1920s to the early 1950s, the comedy team of Laurel and Hardy made over 100 films. They began with short silent films, graduated toFrom the 1920s to the early 1950s, the comedy team of Laurel and Hardy made over 100 films. They began with short silent films, graduated to short sound films and eventually starred in 23 full-length feature films. In their heyday, Laurel and Hardy were among the best-known and most-beloved personalities in show business.
After a brief vignette focusing on the team at the peak of its popularity in 1937, “Stan and Ollie” examines the pair on a 1953 tour of Britain and Ireland. By this time, many assume the team has retired, requiring Stan (Steve Coogan) and Ollie (John C. Reilly in a fat suit) to judge beauty pageants, meet with local officials and do whatever is required to build an audience for their stage performances in small, depressing theaters. The pair does so without complaint. Their efforts result in a sold-out series of performances at the Lyceum Theatre in London. By the time their tour concludes in Ireland, their boat is greeted at the dock by a large, adoring crowd.
Screenwriter Jeff Pope brings to these proceedings the same air of mournful wistfulness that permeated his screenplay for 2013’s “Philomena.” In the hands of Director Jon S. Baird, the script becomes a quiet, thoughtful examination of two colleagues dealing in very different ways with the melancholy and introspection that come when a career is much closer to the end than its beginning. A note in the postscript catches the essence of this film: from Hardy’s death in 1957 until his own in 1965, Stan Laurel continued to industriously write dozens of sketches and comedy scenes – all for the team of Laurel and Hardy.
The performances of Coogan and Reilly are the engines that propel this film, although they inhabit their roles in totally different ways. Steve Coogan offers a tour de force, eerily mimicking many of Stan Laurel’s physical traits, from his Chaplinesque walk to his literal head-scratching antics. His carefully calibrated performance depicts convincingly Laurel’s drive for success, his anxiety about financial security and his bridling at unjust treatment by the Hollywood system. But, ultimately, Coogan communicates Laurel’s quiet joy in just doing the work. John C. Reilly, in contrast, is a study in understatement, content to portray quite simply a man of simple needs and pleasures. Both are riveting. Reilly received a Best Actor Golden Globe nomination for this role. Coogan is nominated for Best Actor by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts.
In many ways, “Stan and Ollie” is an elegy and an homage to a bygone era. Given the chaos, insanity and self-absorption that regularly dominate headlines today, this film offers a forceful nod toward different values – the virtue of daily professionalism, the value of work for its own sake and the gentle rewards of well-earned friendship.… Expand
Average User Score: 8.7Jan 16, 2019I swore off animated movies. Having gone into a sugar coma while viewing the highly-regarded “Paddington 2” (2017), I vowed never again. InI swore off animated movies. Having gone into a sugar coma while viewing the highly-regarded “Paddington 2” (2017), I vowed never again. In this case, I’m glad I broke the rules.
“Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” breaks plenty of rules on its own. Along the way, it offers a variety of pleasant surprises. There’s a cameo by Stan Lee (creator of the Marvel Comics franchise) selling Spider-Man costumes and validating that we’re all Spider-Man by gruffly confirming that his one-size-fits-all costumes fit everybody - at some point. There’s Mahershala Ali (Uncle Aaron) not lighting up the screen with his presence, primarily because he’s not on the screen. There’s Liev Schreiber (Kingpin) showing his dramatic range by shifting from his dour, but excellent, role in “Ray Donovan” to Spider-Man’s dour nemesis. In a total shocker, there’s Nicholas Cage (Spider-Man Noir) appearing in an interesting movie. There’s Hailee Steinfeld (Spider-Woman/Gwen Stacy) in another transformative role. There’s Byron Tyree Henry as, wait for it, Jefferson Davis, the father of our Afro-Puerto Rican protagonist. It’s all just weird and wildly wonderful.
The plot is also predictably bizarre. As part of his plan for world domination, Kingpin has built an atomic collider that inadvertently creates a rip in the space/time continuum. Our protagonist Miles Morales (Shameik Moore – 2015’s “Dope”), a 16-year-old student at Brooklyn Visions Academy, is bitten by a mechanical spider. Soon enough, he explores his developing super powers and is out to thwart Kingpin. Because of the disruption in the space/time continuum, other Spider characters are able to come to his aid: the aforementioned Spider-Woman, Spider-Man (Chris Pine), Older Spider-Man/Peter B. Parker (Jake Johnson), Spider-Noir (Cage as a black-and-white character in a trench coat), and, my personal favorite, Spider-Ham/Peter Porker (John Mulaney) who bears a striking resemblance to Elmer Fudd. Back to the plot: on the brink of world disaster, they collectively save the day.
Even visually, this film is disorienting. There is conventional CGI, Ben-Day dots (used regularly in vintage comic books), an anime character (Peni Parker, voiced by Kimiko Glenn), thought balloons, even written sound effects reminiscent of the old “Batman” TV series (1966-1968). Directors Peter Ramsey, Rodney Rothman and Robert Persichetti, Jr. have pulled out all the stops. It’s all so bizarrely unique that Sony is reportedly trying to patent the processes used to craft these unique visual mash-ups.
If you are looking for a logical/linear story line or deep insight into the human condition, get serious. You really expected that from comic book characters?! But if you want a strange but wondrous adventure, in the immortal words of Steppenwolf (1968), “You don’t know what/We can find/Why don’t you come with me little (gender neutral pronoun)/On a magic carpet ride.”… Expand