February 2021

The Father

by Alan Rapp on February 26, 2021

in Movie Reviews 

  • Title: The Father
  • IMDb: link

The Father movie reviewThe Father offers a view at the world through the eyes of an 83 year-old man (Anthony Hopkins) fighting Alzheimer’s and dementia. Events and characters are jumbled due to Anthony’s (Hopkins) confusion about where he is living, and even the identity of the the people around him who are only sometimes recognizable. Events are often incomplete and shown out of order, to allow the audience to stumble through Anthony’s reality with him before enough is finally revealed to piece together more of his reality than he seems capable of fully understanding.

Olivia Colman, Olivia Williams, Mark Gatiss, Rufus Sewell, and Imogen Poots all come and go throughout the film as Anthony struggles to remember who each is as his frustration leads to anger and resentment. Hopkins is the glue which holds the film together, but each actor adds another level to the Anthony’s distorted world. Director Florian Zeller adapts his own award-winning play Le Père for the screen offering a heartbreaking account of one slowly loosing their grip on reality that is often soul crushing in its honest and bleak examination of dementia and how it affects an individual as well as those around him.

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The Mauritanian

by Alan Rapp on February 25, 2021

in Movie Reviews 

  • Title: The Mauritanian
  • IMDb: link

The Mauritanian movie reviewBased on the true experiences of Mohamedou Ould Salahi (Tahar Rahim) being held by the United States Government for years for suspected ties to 9/11, director Kevin Macdonald‘s film chronicles his stay in Guantanamo Bay and the work of his lawyers (Jodie Foster and Shailene Woodley) to earn his release, not because they believe he is innocent but they believe what happened to Salahi was unconstitutional.

The cast is stellar. We also get Benedict Cumberbatch as the prosecutor with personal ties to the case and Zachary Levi as a sort of shady government agent who doesn’t want the methods for extracting information revealed. Much of the film examine how hard it is to go up against the United States Government in court, especially when Federal Agencies have the power to redact and deny information. The film chooses to make Salahi’s innocence, and in some ways the character himself, of secondary importance over a legal argument that almost never sees the inside of a courtroom. It also relies on big shocking emotional reveals not unlike screenwriters call-out both the Government and the people of the United States for their frenzied reaction to 9/11.

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Superman & Lois – Pilot

by Alan Rapp on February 24, 2021

in Television Reviews 

  • Title: Superman & Lois – Pilot
  • wiki: link

Superman & Lois - Pilot television review

Set after the events of Crisis on Infinite Earths on a rebooted Earth, the “Pilot” of Superman & Lois introduces Clark Kent (Tyler Hoechlin), Lois Lane (Elizabeth Tulloch), and their twin teenage sons Jonathan (Jordan Elsass) and Jordan (Alex Garfin). After a montage reintroducing Superman (complete with several callbacks and nods to various versions of the character over the years), the story starts in earnest with the death of Martha Kent (Michele Scarabelli) and a return to Smallville for the Kent family. While not shown on camera, it appears one of the major villains of the series will be Morgan Edge whose influence is destroying The Daily Planet and also has turned his attention to acquiring land in Smallville. There’s also a more immeadiate threat in an armored villain looking to take down Superman who apparently has some ties to Lex Luthor.

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A Nice Girl Like You

by Alan Rapp on February 24, 2021

in Home Video

  • Title: A Nice Girl Like You
  • IMDb: link

A Nice Girl Like You DVD reviewLucy Hale stars as pornophobic violinist who attempts to become less inhibited following her break-up with her boyfriend (Stephen Friedrich). Adapted from Ayn Carrillo Gailey’s book Pornology, the idea for the film is to follow the misadventures of a “good girl” investigating the world of pornography and sexual enlightenment with the help of her friends (Mindy Cohn, Jackie Cruz, and Adhir Kalyan) while also dating a new man (Leonidas Gulaptis) and struggling to earn a prestigious position with the New York Philharmonic.

While the book has received praise for being witty and hilarious, the film far is more luke-warm romcom than edgy sexcapade. Hale is likable enough in the role of the wide-eyed innocent entering a different world out of curiosity, and to prove something to herself, but the script doesn’t offer much of interest despite the subject matter. And for a film presumably based on real-life experiences, A Nice Girl Like You too often feels cliched and over-the-top. Some of the “humor” involves a horse taking a huge crap during a wedding, a public humiliation from a sexual psychic (Nadia Quinn), and a “cute” pregnancy scare.

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The Equalizer – Judgment Day

by Alan Rapp on February 23, 2021

in Television Reviews 

  • Title: The Equalizer (2021) – Judgment Day
  • IMDb: link

The Equalizer - Judgment Day television review

“Judgment Day” offers a convoluted storyline involving Team Equalizer hired by the defense attorney of an escaped convict (Joe Perrino) who was unjustly put in prison by a District Attorney who is now a judge (Amy Hohn) who has hired thugs out to kill anyone who might reveal her secret. Keeping an innocent man out of prison, and getting justice for the crimes he’s accused of, means working with both Detective Marcus Dante (Tory Kittles) and an Assistant District Attorney (Jennifer Ferrin). The episode’s B-story involves some teenage drama between Delilah (Laya DeLeon Hayes) and a friend drifting apart which means more to Robyn (Queen Latifah) than her daughter. The B-story feels mostly like filler pulled from a afterschool special, albeit one without a point, while the main story proves to be the weakest of the show so far.

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