Watching Westworld – 202 – Reunion

In this week’s episode of HBO’s Westworld, “Reunion”, they add three or four timelines to play with. No big deal.  We find out more about this “Valley Beyond” or “Place of Judgment” that William and Dolores seem to be racing towards to see who can get there first. William wants to burn the place to the ground, Dolores hopes to find a powerful weapon to use against her human oppressors. Maeve is caught in between, just a woman trying to find her daughter in this crazy ‘World. Lots of analysis, and a healthy speculation section at the end for those of you who want to out think show runners Nolan and Joy!

Bald Movies – Avengers: Infinity War (2018)

It took ten years of careful buildup to make the massive undertaking that is Avengers: Infinity War possible, but was all the effort worth it?  Hell, yes.  This is hands down the most epic comic book film ever made, and it is full to bursting with Marvel Studios hallmarks; funny interactions within the heroes, inventive and imaginative fight scenes, jaw-dropping, awesome world and universe building, and genuine character beats.  The final act contains some effective gut punches that Jim and I are both more than a little skeptical of, but in the moment really work well, and can only really be judged after we see what comes next.  At this point, I’m not willing to bet against Marvel.

Watching Westworld – 201 – Journey Into Night

The opening salvo fired in HBO’s Westworld season two premiere wasn’t what we were expecting. We were expecting literal salvos fired by lots of angry hosts into lots of frightened guests, which, you know, that’s certainly there.  But there is so much more.  What to make of Bernard’s time bending descent into near death madness, Dolores oddly performative attempted takeover of the park, Maeve’s increasing attachment to various fellow hosts, to say nothing of what Delos is up to trafficking in the rich and famous DNA and memory trade. What are creators Nolan and Joy up to?  If it’s anything like last season, it will take until the finale to tease all the secrets of Westworld out!

Watching Westworld – Season Two Preview!

The long awaited sophomore season of HBO’s Westworld returns this weekend, and we’ve been champing at the bit.  We discuss the open questions from last season, the tantalizing glimpses of the future we’ve seen from the trailers so far, and discuss upcoming format changes and our policy on spoilers and speculation. Why is William’s past still relevant to the story? What is the door, and how are we supposed to find it? Are Dolores and Maeve running diametrically opposed armies? What is Delos up to with their secret project? Is a robot searching for it’s artificial daughter any more sad and pointless than anything we do in our day to day lives?  Why or why not?  These and many more questions are entertained as we await answers!

Bald Movies – A Quiet Place (2018)

Jim and I went to see the new horror/suspense film, A Quiet Place, directed by and starring John Krasinski, who is joined by his co-star Emily Blunt.  Both are extremely effective at wringing genuine fear and emotion from the audience as they interact with a cast of really talented young actors.  There are problems we have with the film, some of them big ones, but the bottom line is the movie offers a very unique theater experience, it’s extremely tense and scary, and the parts that have to work really work well.

Bald Movies – Ready Player One (2018)

We saw Steven Spielberg’s 80’s nostalgic fun fest, Ready Player One, and we were surprised that it managed to be a good film.  We’d heard nothing but shaky things leading up to it, but with our appropriately set expectations, we had a lot of fun with it.  It’s not perfect, the ending in particular is a bit of a mess, but it works if you want it to work, and if you’re in this movie’s target demo, you’re going to want it to work.  Since we’re both pretty much at ground zero of that target, we can’t say how well it would hold up if you’re safely outside the film’s nostalgia blast wave.