Quick Review: Doctor Sleep

Doctor Sleep

Mike Flanagan

I should probably start out by saying that I am not the biggest fan of The Shining. I read the book and thought it was okay. I was let down by some of the over the top elements like the living hedges. I saw the Kubrick film as an adult, and felt it was too long and drawn out. The trailer for Doctor Sleep had me worried that it was going to throw a bunch of different elements together that would never click to form a cohesive story.

After watching it, I was pleasantly surprised. The disparate elements within the trailer made sense in the context of the whole movie. It never felt unbalanced or like wild ideas were being introduced out of place with everything else. Ewan McGregor is great in the leading role. His acting prowess helps to ground the movie, and his interactions with the various characters come off as authentic and meaningful. I enjoyed the antagonists way more than expected. Rose The Hat is a strong character, and her band of magic vampires are eclectic and intriguing.

I have seen several reviews talk about how the movie was too long or that it was boring. I never felt that way. I was engaged throughout the entire film. There were a few places that I was genuinely caught off guard by the direction of the plot. In fact, there were several times as I was watching that I thought to myself, “I cannot believe how much I am enjoying this.” The movie might not be for everyone, but in a happy turn of events, it is definitely a movie for me.

Quick Review: Jojo Rabbit

Jojo Rabbit

Taika Waititi

I had huge expectations for this movie, and sometimes that can lead to disappointing results. Fortunately, this movie was better than I had anticipated. It is hard to imagine how a studio came around to green lighting a movie like this, but I am glad FOX Searchlight did. Jojo Rabbit is funny, heartbreaking, uncomfortable, and necessary. Waititi is masterful both as director and writer, creating the anti-hate movie the world needs right now. Roman Griffin Davis is masterful as Jojo. They interplay of being a zealous Nazi youth and a young boy coming to terms with a world he has never fully understood is a wonder to watch. Waititi as Jojo’s imaginary friend, Hitler, is hilarious. And neither detracts from the other great performances of Thomasin McKenzie, Scarlett Johansson, Sam Rockwell, and the rest of the cast. I loved every moment of this film. I have no doubt it will be near the top of my favorite movies of the year. It is the kind of movie that makes you immediately want to go see it again. I hope it reaches the large audience that it deserves.

Wendy [Trailer]

This movie looks dope.

The Kindness of Strangers [Trailer]

I will go see Zoe Kazan in anything.

Bloodshot [Trailer]

Marvel and DC get most of the coverage when it comes to shared comic universes, but Valiant needs to be part of the conversation. I am excited for their first foray into film. I hope it is awesome, and makes enough money to continue to give audiences more of Valiant’s cool characters and stories.

Jojo Rabbit [Trailer]

I cannot wait to see this movie.

Wonder Woman [Trailer]

At this point, I am over superhero movies. However, there is something about seeing Wonder Woman kick ass that appeals to a visceral part of me. It is about time that a female hero gets her own big budget film. I hope this movie does great, both critically and monetarily.