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Detroit Cineaste

Reviews of movies and television programs

The Invitation

How to make a movie about Dracula feel new, or at least new-ish?  The Invitation addresses this by telling a very familiar story about a very familiar character through the eyes of Evie (Nathalie Emmanuel), an African American toiling away in the States as a waitress.  Her job sucks and with her mother’s recent death, … Continue reading The Invitation

The Batman

Gotham: a city beset with drugs and crime.  The police are overwhelmed and have sought the help of a vigilante known as Batman (Robert Pattinson).  Bruce Wayne, the man behind the mask, is more than willing to oblige.  After two years, he has instilled fear into the city’s criminals, but criminal activity is on the … Continue reading The Batman

Minions: The Rise of Gru

In this prequel sequel, Gru (Steve Carrel) is intent on joining the Vicious6, a group of super villains who have deep-sixed their leader, Wild Knuckles (Alan Arkin).  Even though the minions have given Gru nothing but unwavering loyalty and dedication to his cause, he doesn’t believe that the minions are ready for prime time.  What … Continue reading Minions: The Rise of Gru

Nope

The flying saucer movie has been a staple for over seventy years.  The first movie to feature a UFO, appropriately titled The Flying Saucer, came out in 1950.  Since then, the genre has primarily been about a flying saucer, or flying saucers, showing up on Earth causing problems for hapless humans.  There have been some … Continue reading Nope

Thor: Love and Thunder

Congratulations, Marvel, on releasing your first full-fledged comedy! That you managed to do this with a story that involves killing gods and a character dying of cancer is a particularly absurd accomplishment. Hemsworth is a good sport and he alone makes this cartoon of a movie watchable. Continue reading Thor: Love and Thunder

Where The Crawdads Sing

If Where The Crawdads Sing was only about a girl living in the North Carolina marsh who, after being abandoned by her entire family, learned how to survive and grew up to become a successful nature illustrator, the movie would have been a compelling one.  Unfortunately, the story doesn’t have anywhere near the confidence that … Continue reading Where The Crawdads Sing

Elvis

Baz Luhrmann and actor Austin Butler bring Elvis to life. They also give life to oddball manager and promoter Colonel Tom Parker. The movie would have been great if it kept its focus on its subject. Its a good movie nonetheless, featuring excellent musical performances throughout. Recommended. Continue reading Elvis

The Black Phone

An expertly crafted horror movie with more complexity and texture than most others in this category. Ethan Hawke gives a good yet inexplicable performance as The Grabber, the child killer at the heart of the story. Director Scott Derrickson makes a welcome return to his roots after a vacation in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Recommended. Continue reading The Black Phone

Lightyear

Lightyear is an unnecessary extension of the Toy Story universe. Even worse, its boring. Instead of the toy, Buzz as a person in a generic science-fiction adventure that takes no risks and has zero imagination. Not recommended. Continue reading Lightyear

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