Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther is a great super hero film, and an even better launching point into interesting discussions about the politics of colonialism and liberation. Starring Chadwick Boseman as the Panther himself, and Michael B. Jordan as the best Marvel villain since Magneto, the movie is a constant challenge to one’s complacency and sense of justice. Wakanda looks amazing, the cast is fantastic, the world they are building is both visually and philosophically amazing, to the point that one of the films weaknesses is that we were desperate to learn and know more.
We saw The Post tonight, the star-studded retelling of The Washington Post’s decision to publish the Pentagon Papers, the internal history commissioned by the Dept. of Defense that detailed the long list of failures in America’s involvement politically and militarily in Vietnam, risking financial ruin and jail time. Told from the perspective of the owner of the Post, Katharine Graham (Meryl Streep), and her editor Ben Bradlee (Tom Hanks), as they wrestle with their own cozy relationships with previous and current presidential administrations and the legal, financial, and ethical risks of defying the government. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a more impressive cast, the film is gorgeous and extremely well written and tells a powerful and important story of how vital a free press is to the health of our nation.
Jim and I have seen Star Wars: Episode VIII: The Last Jedi: No More Subtitles, We Promise, and surprise, surprise! One of us like it and one of us wanted to like it more than they actually felt the love. On the other hand, the film is receiving almost universal praise so don’t let that dissuade you from seeing and enjoying The Last Jedi. Haha, as if wild falthiers could drag anyone away from seeing a new Star Wars.
We have seen The Disaster Artist, the behind the scenes look at the creation of The Room, which is quite possibly the worst film ever made. Based on the book of the same name, the brothers Franco play Tommy and Greg in a way that manages to feel honest, sympathetic, and most of all very funny. It is frustrating that there is so little there, there. There is no big revealing answers that make any sense about the deeply weird and enigmatic Tommy, and the friendship between him and Greg also feels like the barest sketch possible to make the film work. But it does work, and like Ed Wood before it, manages to make an amazing movie out of a dog turd. It’s an amazing alchemic work, spinning gold from lead. Go see it, regardless of how familiar you are with the source material. You’re going to be in for a good time.
Cecily and A.Ron discuss the latest DC comic book movie attempt, and one with a lot of hopes riding on it, Justice League. It’s a real who’s who of comic book movies, does it manage to build on the momentum of the very good Wonder Woman, or is this another Superman vs Batman level disappointment? Well, we’d have to say it falls right in between those two extremes. It’s not great, but it’s also not terrible, and does just enough to hopefully give DC some room to breathe and establish these other presumably great characters in their own films and organically setup their universe for the next time the League has to assemble.
A.Ron and Jim saw the most recent film adaptation of the Agatha Christie mystery classic, Murder on the Orient Express. Directed and starring Kenneth Branagh, as well as a baker’s dozen other stars, is lush and lavish and maybe missing a few pieces it needs to be assembled into a fully functional whole? It’s like an Ikea bookshelf with a few screws and dowel rods missing, is what we’re saying. We discuss our general, non-spoiler thoughts before talking about upcoming films, before getting to our Club Member only spoiler section. If you want to hear our full thoughts on this and many other first run Bald Movies, consider joining the Club today!
Jim and A.Ron have seen Thor: Ragnarok and let us be the millionth person to tell you that it is fun and colorful. There isn’t much else there, but, you know, but director Taika Waititi ensured that it’s really fun and really colorful. It asks some big questions about Thor, and Odin, and even the Hulk, but isn’t really interested in the answers. It’s not a bad thing, because it is really, really fun. Cate Blanchett is clearly enjoying being a vampy big bad with a flair for irony and the dramatic, Jeff Goldblum is a delight as an eccentric gladiatorial slave owner. The premise and resolution are quite clever. We just are a little puzzled at some of the over the top early buzz hailing it as the new benchmark for comic book movies.
A.Ron and Cecily went to do a make up review of the Coen Brothers written, George Clooney directed film Suburbicon, and it’s not great, Bob. Cecily saw some interesting things with the social commentary and A.Ron is in agreement that the movie was good looking and well acted, but ultimately the movie is pointless, depressing, and disappointing. We also discuss trailers like we do, but if you want to hear the full spoilers review of the film, you’ll have to be a Club Member. Why not join today?
A funny thing happened on the way to the movies tonight. My trusty yet elderly steed, my Pontiac Vibe, suffered a brake failure, scared the crap out of me, and long story short, caused me to miss tonight’s scheduled movie, Suburbicon. I’m really sorry, towards the top of my chart of things I hate is missing a content deadline, but it couldn’t be helped. BUT!!! Cecily and I pledge to do a raincheck podcast Monday evening for Suburbicon, and I’ll see if I can rope Jim into it too.
A.Ron and Jim saw Jackie Chan’s return to action form in The Foreigner, a Taken-esque revenge film where a grieving father takes it upon himself to avenge the death of his beloved daughter at the hands of IRA bombers. It’s great looking, featuring great performances from both Chan and Brosnan, and Jackie hasn’t lost more than a step or two when it comes to the action, fearlessly throwing his 63 year old body all over the screen. What he might have lost in athleticism he makes up for in a ruthless intensity that I don’t think I’ve seen from him. Enjoy our spoiler free review on the house, but if you want to hear us delve into spoiler territory, you’ll have to join the Club!