Review : Glass

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“Security guard David Dunn uses his supernatural abilities to track Kevin Wendell Crumb, a disturbed man who has twenty-four personalities.”

Soooooooooooo, hmmm, where do I begin. Okay so this movie picks up and takes off really well, it picks up right where it should have, and introduces us to some of the characters we came back to this franchise for. The first half of this movie in truth is really a similar return to form like Unbreakable and Split are, but only the first half. The tension and suspense, and just character building done in the first half of this movie really is well done, and no shines brighter than James McAvoy, but I’d put Bruce Willis a close second with one of his best subtle and understated performances in a long long time. Thats where this movie shines, when those characters are allowed to push the narrative forward, but there comes a point in the movie, where it feels like M. Night literally runs out of ideas, and decides to go for so many twists and turns, that they come across as jarring and don’t fit in with the rest fo the movie. This movie is literally a tale of two halves. It does such a good job at building up, that its get to a tipping point, where it seemingly falls off a cliff. Really and truly, the biggest problem with this movie, is what caused M. Night to fall from grace in the first place, and clearly now we can see, he should be given enough creative rope, but if he gets too much, he’s always going to hang himself with it. One of the best ways I can describe this movie, is the way I felt when I was leaving the cinema, and it was the same way I felt after watching A Cure for Wellness. I was all in, until the end, and then I was like wait what? And that slightly off taste from the end of the movie, puts a bit a bitter into the great parts also.

Review Score : 6.5 out of 10

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Top 10 Movies of 2018 (Wide Release)

Another year down, means another year in the books and another Top 10 list to top it all off. My top 10 list as always is based on the those movies that were released widely in 2018 especially in my region, which means that there are always some movies, like those real awards contender types that don’t make this list because they only get limited released at the end of the year before wider ones early the following year. That also means a lot of those Oscar type movies from last year, will find their way onto this years list. All that being said, lets get into the list!

We’ll start the list with an honourable mention, for a movie that just missed the cut, and if it wasn’t for some awards movies from start of the year it would have definitely made it onto the list.

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Black Panther

Maybe one of the most important movies of the year, Black Panther showed the world (and really I mean hollywood, the world already knew) that a black lead movie could be a MAJOR success. At this current moment the movie has grossed $1.3 Billion dollars worldwide, was the highest grossing movie of the year in the U.S. market, and only second worldwide in gross. All that success, on top of what is both a good and important movie, and just an honourable mention, shows how tight the list this time around is.

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Avengers Infinity War

The only movie that made more money in 2018 than Black Panther, is the number 10 on our list. Avengers infinity war isn’t just a movie, its the culmination of 10 years of ground work, and good will building, and the most amazing thing is it actually good on top of all of that. More characters than you can shake a stick at, and yet still a really coherent movie, with enough action to fill up anyones needs, but the real star here is that we get to see what happens when you have ten years worth of character development.

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Mission Impossible Fallout

If you asked me, what were the odds of Mission Impossible 6 being the best ever in the series, I’d have said it sounds pretty slim, but yet here we are. Mission Impossible Fallout really took all of the things we liked about these movies when they started making their comeback, and they combined it all perfectly in this sixth entry. Add in some really great cast additions, and what you have here is possibly the best action/adventure movie of the year, and certainly enough to rank number 9 on our list.

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Call me by Your Name

There are few movies, that can really capture heartbreak, but also capture the highs before that make that low so low, like Call me by Your Name. This movie takes so many classic tropes that can be so played out, and used them so subtlety and succinctly that you hang off every moment just like the characters do in this beauty of a movie.

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Incredibles 2

Its not often, sequels can live up to the expectations they set for themselves, and some might even say this movie isn’t as good as the first, but when the first in the Incredibles, even a little behind is still really far ahead. The Incredibles 2 brings back the entire gang we know and love, but switches it up just enough to still get the fresh feeling. And with some slick new animation the gang has never looked better.

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A Star is Born

Some people are born to do certain things, and that’s just how it goes. It shouldn’t surprise anyone that Lady Gaga is born to sing, and Bradley Cooper is born to act, what was a bit surprising though, is just how well Cooper does as a director, because his directing is what really takes this movie over the top, and into a higher tier. Filled with wondering music, and some real heart and emotion, there won’t be a dry eye in the room by the time this ones done.

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A Quiet Place

After a while doing what I do, you start to get a real hand on knowing what kind of movie you’re in for before you see it, but occasionally, you get a movie like this, and everything you thought about it is wrong. And I was more than happy to be wrong. This isn’t your run of the mill horror or thriller movie, A Quiet Place is a really smartly and really well done movie, that takes the rules its give itself seriously, and always keeps its consequences sky high.

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The Shape of Water

This is where we get into that part of the list, where the things separating movies start to get really small, and really specific. It’s the little decisions and choices that put a movie like The Shape of Water so high up on this list. Theres this level of world and character building, this attention to detail, and this ability to create atmosphere that really make this movie such an artistic expression, compared to many of the movies that might try to play in this same space.

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Lady Bird

Theres a concept people use when talking about films called trimming the fat. It means simply to cut out or off parts of a movie that weigh it down and hold it back from being the best version of itself, and I don’t think any movie in all of 2018, could claim to be as lean as Lady Bird. This movie accomplishes so much in its 94 minute run time (probably the shortest movie on this list), that when it ends, you genuinely want more, and its always better wanting more, than having too much.

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Spider-Man into the Spider-Verse

It took right down to the very end of 2018, to finally get another movie that I gave the ranking of 10/10, but right before the end of year came a true gem of a movie in Into the Spider-Verse. This movie is many things, its even some things I’ve never seen before, but the thing it is the most, is an absolutely amazing movie that everyone should see, and in cinemas.

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Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing Missouri

And here it is, number 1, the best of the year. There are movies, even amazing ones, that don’t make you look at things differently, and Three Billboards is one of those movies that makes you look at things differently. If you had to choose just one movie from all of 2018 to see, this would be the one, I can’t praise it highly enough.

So what do you think? Agree with our list? As always any of the reviews for these movies can be found in our archive, or you can just search for them by name, but feel free to comment and let us know what you think, if you agree and what if any movies you think got snubbed by our list. Remember these are the wide released movies of 2018, so if you think some of these should be 2017 movies, or you don’t see one of your favs here check its full release dates.

Cheers

(And HEPPY NEW YEAR)

Review : Spider-Man – Into the Spider-verse

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“Miles Morales becomes the Spider-Man of his reality and crosses paths with his counterparts from other dimensions to stop a threat to all reality.”

Spider-Man into the spider-verse, might not be the greatest movie ever made, but it might be a perfect movie. In every aspect, this movie excels and exceeds. The character design is amazing, the music and score is perfect, the voice acting is superb, the animation is like nothing we’ve ever seen, the directing is wonderful, and I could keep going and going. There isn’t one part of this movie, that I could really have any kind of issue with, its just all so well done. This movie also gives us some of the best versions of a beloved character in Peter Parker, while also being squarely a Miles Morales movie, which gives us the best look yet at probably the second most famous and well received Spider-Man. This movie introduces so much we never got to see on the big screen, while also giving us so much that we’re familiar with that it keeps this movie from being too far out for casual fans, but deep enough for the big time fans. I’ve said before the animation in this movie is something we’ve never seen before, but it truly is ground breaking and stunning. It mixes so many different styles and genre of animation here, but its done so seamlessly, and with such a high level of detail, that most people won’t even notice all them while watching the movie. This movie also has an amazing Stan Lee cameo, that works on a few different levels, and was just really nice to see. All in all, Spider-Man into the spider-verse, is one the best movies you will see this year, and might be a perfectly constructed movie.

Review Score : 10 out of 10

Review : Mortal Engines

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“A mysterious young woman named Hester Shaw joins forces with Anna Fang, a dangerous outlaw with a bounty on her head, and Tom Natsworthy, an outcast from London, to lead a rebellion against a giant predator city on wheels.”

So first of all, the marketing of this movie definitely make it seem like its directed by Peter Jackson, and it definitely isn’t. That aside, Mortal Engines is like two movies sewn together straight up the middle. On the one hand, this movie is very much in the vein of every YA, dystopian future novel ever made, in all the good and bad ways. Then on the other hand, this movie has all the world building and depth that Peter Jackson always brings to his films (even if he didn’t direct it). As soon as this movie peaks your interest with references to bits of it myth and lore, it takes a turn down a cliched road to bring you right back out of it. I haven’t read the book this movie is based on, but I’m sure this movie suffers from what many of these movies do in that it struggles to fit all the content of that book in a sub 3 hour run time, but here especially it makes this movie feel very contrived and convenient at times which makes you just want to roll your eyes because it asks you to take certain leaps, that it doesn’t get to setup enough before then. This movie is definitely beautiful, I mean its gorgeous, and it has such a real and lived in aesthetic that does genuinely help create the world this movie builds, its the everything else that brings this movie crashing back down. that leaves Mortal Engines in a tough spot. On the one hand, fans of the source material might really like being able finally see this work come to life, but I don’t think its going to be able to pull in any outside fans to this world.

Review Score : 4.5 out of 10

Review : Creed 2

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“Under the tutelage of Rocky Balboa, light heavyweight contender Adonis Creed faces off against Viktor Drago, son of Ivan Drago.”

This movie is all about legacy, in more ways than you might think. In the most obvious way, it’s about the sons of two of the biggest characters from the Rocky franchise going head to head and fist to face to be champion. Then there’s the legacy of some of the older characters in this franchise, who still have some character road to travel here. Then theres the legacy of these actual movies here, which does have some ups and downs. This movie has many of the things that made the first Creed such a break out and fantastic movie, but it also is missing some of those things and they are pretty apparent. To start, this movie lost its director in Ryan Coogler, and while its new director Caple Jr. does a fine job, he can’t bring the same level of gravitas that Coogler did. Jordan still gives as good of a performance, but where that performance would have been elevated by Coogler, they aren’t by Caple Jr. The sound here is still really good, and that’s both the score and soundtrack anndddddd the actual sound design. It sounds really satisfying to hear gloves hit something really hard. There are some really nice visual moments here, but that might be a great way to describe this movie compared to its predecessor. Where Creed was an entire package, Creed 2 has those in moments, but not always. Don’t get me wrong, Creed 2 is a good movie, and its a nice sequel to the first Creed, but that movie really came out of nowhere with how good it was, and it made the expectations for this movie much higher, and with the loss of some of the critical elements that made the first movie great, this movie only gets to be great in parts. All in all, Creed 2 is a good sequel that doesn’t ultimately live up to original but still manages to deliver enough to keep the franchise going.

Review Score : 7.5 out of 10

Review : Robin Hood (2018)

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“A war-hardened Crusader and his Moorish commander mount an audacious revolt against the corrupt English crown in a thrilling action-adventure packed with gritty battlefield exploits, mind-blowing fight choreography, and a timeless romance.”

One of the first things I thought to myself as the end credits of this movie began to roll, were wait who directed this, and why does he want to be Guy Richie so bad. Otto Bathurst is a director much more known for his work on tv, and it really does show here in his pacing and execution, and he does definitely try to have a real Richie kind of flair in his style, or at least the style he tried to implement for this movie. Outside of that, this is really just…fine. Egerton is likeable and charismatic as he always is, so if Foxx. The rest of the cast don’t have anywhere near as big a role as these two, and they do carry he movie, but it just feels like they aren’t carrying much. For all the flair, and arrows and action this movie has, there seems to be not much below the surface, and so anytime the movie slows down, that shallowness comes to the front. And that ultimately leaves the movie feelings really wanting at the end. Thats really the story here. This movie is much more fun than substance, and its much more saturday morning cartoon, than big time movie.

Review Score : 5 out of 10

Review : Fantastic Beasts – The Crimes of Grindelwald

“In an effort to thwart Grindelwald’s plans of raising pure-blood wizards to rule over all non-magical beings, Albus Dumbledore enlists his former student Newt Scamander, who agrees to help, unaware of the dangers that lie ahead. Lines are drawn as love and loyalty are tested, even among the truest friends and family, in an increasingly divided wizarding world.”

The second installment in the Newt lead Fantasic beasts series, sets him and his friends on a much darker, much more serious mission than before. That turn takes the entire franchise here into a much more adult world and setting. There have always been consequences in the Harry Potter universe, but never before has there been this level of flashes of green. The beasts this time even take a darker role, (for the most part) but that definitely allows from some great moments and special effects. This movie follows quite a few story lines, and as such it really spreads around the screen time, and that’s both good and bad. It’s good that it allows for the expanded cast here, which had some really good performances in it, that we wouldn’t otherwise have gotten to see. But that’s at the cost of having some of the fan favorite characters see less time on the screen that we might like. The biggest of these is really Jude Law’s Dumbledore, who really is a fantastic character, that we have to wait to see more of. This movie also serves to be more of a bridge between the places we know like Hogwarts, and this newer (but actually older) wizarding world that we don’t really get to see. I think ultimately, much will come to be said about this movies plot, as when you make new entries to storylines as well known as these, it’s hard to have surprises, and when you do, there can be a lot of push back. This movie itself has some real big twists and turns, which I really think can only be answered in a sequel. That being said, this movie does suffer a bit from really feeling like that middle, setup kind of movie, where I think it could have benefitted from giving us a little more now, and preventing this movie from being a bit of a lull in the series. All in all, The Crimes of Grindelwald is one of those movies that’s going to have a lot in it for big fans of Rowling’s work, but its lacks some of the charm of the first movie, and tries a little too hard to setup a third.

Review Score : 7 out of 10