Dakota Johnson is a star. Leslie Mann is as talented an actress as there is working today deserving of a movie to call her own. Rebel Wilson, when used correctly, can produce belly laughs better than just about anyone. Those are the three things I took away from watching the amenable, generally amusing if moderately forgettable comedy How to Be Single, the movie never quite coming into its own yet hardly what I’d call a waste of time.
There is an unvarnished innocence to Nina Forever that I was decidedly captivated by. The Blaine brothers mine universal territory here, embracing emotions familiar to just about everyone, doing so in the context of a love triangle where one party to the affair is a talkative corpse.
But for me, while not a film likely to have a lot in the way of staying power, I still enjoyed Zoolander 2, the sequel reminding me that Stiller is a creatively inspired director who should probably step behind the camera more often than he right now does.
[Deadpool] is a fun, hyper-violent, gleefully perverse frolic into the super-powered absurd, and if a sequel does end up happening I could envision a scenario where it does get the opportunity to push the sort of boundaries of good taste this origin tale only hints at trying to demolish.
Much like [Joel and Ethan Coen's] superb, achingly personal satire A Serious Man, the world of Hail, Caesar! ends with a final image that will leave many perplexed, some annoyed and almost all questioning what it is exactly Joel and Ethan are trying to say. In other words, it’s perfect, and like the best of the duo’s achievements it’s an ending I’m going to be pondering for quite a long time to come.
If things ultimately go off the rails they don’t do so in a way that causes any lasting damage, the film’s final moments packing enough of an emotional, and in some ways spiritual, wallop to more than make up for the overblown complexity of the storytelling tricks Hall eventually opts to revel in.
The last third, in particular, is a model of kinetic efficiency, and even though by then I was pretty certain I had a good grasp on what was going to happen and when because the filmmaking was so strong I sat right there on the edge of my seat all the same anyhow. The Pack is pretty terrific, and I can’t wait to return for a second bite sometime soon.
It’s as silly as it sounds, yet, because Steers plays things so straight, treats things with such dramatic sincerity, gosh darn it if all this mayhem and chaos doesn’t actually work. There are thrills, there are chills and goodness knows there are a number of laughs, the director doing a fine job of balancing things with a straight-laced glee that’s kind of wonderful.
Of all the films Warner Archive could bring to Blu-ray, they chose to give The Ice Pirates – yes, The Ice Pirates – a loving hi-def upgrade. Thankfully, they’ve done their typically wonderful job, picture and audio absolutely top-notch, so fans of this unabashedly silly, visually rambunctious sci-fi comedy will undoubtedly be pleased as far as that goes. Everyone else? Well, everyone else will likely wonder why all the fuss and bother – that’s if they even care to watch the movie in the first place.