After polluting Springfield so much that the government encloses the town in a massive dome, Homer goes on an odyssey to save his family. Weakened a little by expansion to movie-length, this is nevertheless a consistently funny flick with a few standout sequences.
Month: July 2018
LBJ (2017, dir. Rob Reiner)
A modest biopic of Lyndon Johnson, focusing on his succession from Kennedy. Straightforward and sympathetic to its protagonist, with good performances from a quality cast – Richard Jenkins comes off best – and only marginally-distracting (though excellent) prosthetics.
Wind River (2017, dir. Taylor Sheridan)
A hunter helps an FBI agent investigate the murder of a young woman. Enthralling snowy contemporary Western, with something to say about grief, the bleakness of reservation life, and life in the mountains, while delivering genre thrills.
The Hitman’s Bodyguard (2017, dir. Patrick Hughes)
A down-on-his-luck bodyguard has to escort his former nemesis to a court hearing. Passable road movie / action comedy with a game cast doing its best with average material. Some fun bickering and fighting though, and a weird sense of UK geography.
Cabin Fever (2016, dir. Travis Z)
Five students rent a cabin in the woods and become exposed to a flesh-eating contagion. One splendid Grand Guignol moment aside, this is a duff remake of a not-especially-good recent horror, ticking off all the cliches The Cabin In The Woods subverted.
Nightbreed (1990, dir. Clive Barker)
A young man is troubled by visions of monsters, and of a place called Midian. Ambitious but confusingly-told fantasy/horror hybrid with plenty going on, and lots of ideas, though not all of them well-executed enough to make for a fully-coherent movie.
Paddington 2 (2017, dir. Paul King)
Paddington ends up in prison after being wrongly convicted of a treasure map theft. Machine-tooled sequel balancing community spirit, slapstick, musical numbers and a climactic train chase. Expertly done, with a fine cast, especially a gleeful Hugh Grant.
Wetlands (2017, dir. Emanuele Della Valle)
An ex-addict cop has a chance at redemption. Autumnal neo-noir with a good cast and some fine ideas and moments, but an overly-busy plot and some excesses muddy the waters. Not uninteresting though.
Happy Death Day (2017, dir. Christopher B. Landon)
A female student has to relive the day of her murder again and again. Sprightly campus-based slasher horror-comedy, fairly unashamed in its mashup of Groundhog Day and Scream. Pretty good, within its limitations, leading to a direct sequel two years later.
You Were Never Really Here (2017, dir. Lynne Ramsey)
A hitman struggling with mental health issues accepts a contract to rescue a trafficked child. Deliberate, beautiful, and cryptic, this noir drama isn’t for everyone in its mix of arthouse and genre, but is nevertheless well worth your time. Recommended.