Thursday, October 27, 2016


My regular readers will know I recently declared my intention to finally watch the entire "Saw" series in my effort to catch up on many of the horror franchises I have been missing. I have only seen the first three installments of the "Saw" series, and I remember none of them well enough, so I'm starting from scratch with the first film. I remembered many of the twists of this rather ingenious plot, in particular the dramatic ending, so I was curious if the film would hold up even knowing what I did. Surprisingly it did. I remember being substantially confused when I first saw the film as the narrative changes and plot twists had me rather confused at times. It was much easier to follow this time through, and I found there were so many small details I had missed originally that jumped out at me now. I still found the acting to be pretty awful, and Wan has grown a lot as a director since this film, but it's a solid piece with suspenseful elements that weren't present in much of the horror of the day. I enjoyed this reviewing and am looking forward to the rest of the series. 4/5

Saw on Netflix

Wednesday, October 26, 2016


This thriller is just an internet version of "Would You Rather?", which was a superior movie in most ways. The ending really didn't work for me, but I enjoyed the cinematography and the music a lot. Good acting from Dave Franco and Emma Roberts as well. 3/5

Nerve on Netflix

Tuesday, October 25, 2016


This movie tried so hard to be the "Risky Business" for this generation, right down to the Porsche, but they got all the important things wrong. It's popcorn fun with good music, but nothing more than that. 2.5/5

Sundown on Netflix

Monday, October 24, 2016

Wide Awake

There's a reason no one has ever heard of this early M. Night Shyamalan film. Because it's horrid. It's family dramedy that is Hallmark quality and faith-based. I couldn't make it past the halfway point without turning it off. Not good at all for me! 1.5/5

Wide Awake on Netflix

Sunday, October 23, 2016

The Perfect Guy

This thriller was very paint-by-the-numbers, no real detail or motivation given at all. There were strange moments when characters were clearing referencing material cut out of the film, which made things all the more confusing. The acting was just average - there was nothing special about this for me. 2.5/5

The Perfect Guy on Netflix

Saturday, October 22, 2016


I've realized lately that I seem to have missed a big swath of popular horror in the last several years, so I've been attempting to remedy that as of late. I just finished the two "Conjuring" films, and now I've moved on to the "Insidious" franchise. You can't miss a James Wan film. He has a particular eye and color palette that is just unmistakable. This film is visually beautiful, but I felt the script lacked focus and the characters were weakly drawn. This was just average for me. I will say this has also inspired me to watch the whole of the "Saw" franchise as well, so that should be an interesting few weeks! 3/5

Insidious on Netflix

Friday, October 21, 2016

A Ballerina's Tale

This documentary about Misty was both beautiful and a bit frustrating. It was beautiful because I had never seen Misty dance for extended periods of time and she's just breathtaking to watch. She has such a gift, it's amazing. But it was also frustrating because I wanted to know more about Misty the woman and less about the issue of Black women in classical dance. This would have been a five star film if I could have learned more about what really made Misty the amazing dancer she is. 4/5

A Ballerina's Tale on Netflix

Tuesday, October 18, 2016


I am so blown away by the cinematography in this film. Every frame was like a piece of fine art. It was lush and framed so perfectly it was just breathtaking. Ryan Simpkins was magical in the lead, which was not an easy part to play in the least. I don't know why the complaints about the ending - I adored it. It was the perfect way to end this film. I loved this. 4.5/5

Anguish on Netflix

The Meddler

I admit I'm not a big fan of Sarandon but she was really great in this. It reminded me of "Hello, My Name is Doris" in feel and tone, although I connected more with the message of "Doris". A solid feel-good comedy with good performances. 3.5/5

The Meddler on Netflix

Monday, October 17, 2016

The Double

This twisty thriller reminded me of "No Way Out", but with a couple of extra twists. I didn't see the final ones coming, although in retrospect I should have. Decent acting, engaging plot, I just wish there was a bit more character development. 3/5

The Double on Netflix

Friday, October 14, 2016

A Bigger Splash

This arty drama had promise and a strong lead performance from Tilda Swinton, who managed to deliver poignant emotion with virtually no dialogue and never speaking above a whisper. The plot built slowly to its inevitable conclusion, buoyed by another strong performance by Fiennes. Unfortunately, my praise ends there, as the rest of the characters were derivative and the plot slow and clumsy. I had expected it to be more daring, but it never seemed to get going for me. Just average I'm afraid. 3/5

A Bigger Splash on Netflix

Wednesday, October 12, 2016


I thought I knew what type of movie I was getting when I read this Netflix description, but the first four minutes of the movie over the opening credits stunned me so much I had to rewind and watch them again. This is a black comedy ith a big dark underbelly, but it's also sweet and funny and really laugh-worthy. It's hard to straddle that kind of divide, but this film does it beautifully. Loved this. 4/5

Joshy on Netflix

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

A Perfect Day

This drama is actually pretty witty and clever - I'm not sure why the label "dark" is attached to it. Well, yes, there are dark elements, but I wouldn't call the film dark in tone. Del Toro and Robbins are both excellent, and the plot is interesting and concise. I liked this. 3.5/5

A Perfect Day on Netflix

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Slow Learners

This was a genuinely sweet, laughably funny, and very endearing comedy. Yes, it was predictable, but it really didn't matter. The two leads were excellent and I really enjoyed it. 4/5

Slow Learners on Netflix

Saturday, October 8, 2016

The Conjuring

Yes, this was a pretty straightforward no-frills basic possession/haunting story. But it was acted quite well by Farmiga and Taylor, and it did legitimately freak me out at times, so it's definitely worth a watch. I'm interested to see the sequel. 3.5/5

The Conjuring on Netflix