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18th January
2019
written by Adam

It’s been 19 years since Elijah Price’s (Samuel L. Jackson) masterminding caused a tragic train accident in Philadelphia– a collision that killed all passengers except David Dunn (Bruce Willis), a secret real life man of steel. Considered a genius and danger to society Price is now kept sedated and incarcerated in a local mental hospital, Dunn functions as a security guard by day and a vigilante keeper of the peace by night. So, with the recent emergence of Kevin Crumb (James McAvoy) and his split 24 distinct personalities including the bloodthirsty “Beast,” Philadelphia is primed once again to garner attention in the superhuman arena, but not if Psychologist Dr. Ellie Staple (Sarah Paulson) can put an end to their “super” behaviors first, maybe there’s a rational and scientific explanation that might help these “delusional” individuals? Or not?

Glass

Written and Directed by M. Night Shyamalan, this third and final installment of the mythic trilogy, a series many thought was shelved in 2000 after the first film, Unbreakable, was originally met with mixed reviews. Alas, down but not out, this latest offering delivers satisfying conclusions and twists to a story-line decades in the making, to that end, big props to Shyamalan for the execution, foresight, and long term planning in a way few Directors ever attempt. And, with solid performances from the ensemble the first two thirds of the film set up for something truly fantastic; sadly it’s the final third where follow through and payoff feels a bit less satisfying; perhaps it’s the now expected Shyamalan twist that carries less weight or perhaps it’s our expectations of what a superhero film should be, after all, we turn to comics and superheroes for hope and inspiration, it’s too bad the film does little to address those needs up until the very last minutes of an under-cooked final few brush strokes. Glass is rated PG-13.

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11th January
2019
written by Adam

Phillip (Bryan Canston) is an incredibly wealthy business wizard now paralyzed from the neck down and grieving the loss of his wife to cancer. Seemingly broken by the world, Phillip is missing joy and wonder, that is until the unlikely hire of his body assistant, Dell (Kevin Heart), a rough and unrefined man just looking to stay off his parole officer’s bad list. Teaching each other lessons about life, their friendship may be exactly what the other needs.

The Upside

Directed by Neil Burger and written by Jon Hartmere based on the screenplay of Les Intouchables by √Čric Toledo¬†(2011) this adaptation of a true story contains a great deal of the charm and fun of the original yet somehow still seems to be missing that special je ne sais quoi. That’s not to say that the chemistry between Cranston, Heart, and Nicole Kidman is absent; rather, the chemistry is in fact there, but elements of believability, wonder, and inspiration somehow seem to get lost in translation. Still, a feel good film with just enough glow to create a sense of endearment to start off 2019 with a dash of hope. Maybe matinee worthy. The Upside is rated PG-13.

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21st December
2018
written by Adam

The year is 1987 and while on the run from the Decepticons, Autobot Bumblebee finds himself hiding in a small Californian beach town junkyard. Discovered by a clever young mechanic, Charlie (Hailee Steinfeld), the two offer each other friendship, protection, and healing. But, when Shatter and Dropkick (Angela Bassett and Justin Theroux) arrive it could be game over, preventing earth’s demise and Decepticon rule becomes the new objective. Autobots Roll OUT!

Written by Christina Hodson and Directed by Travis Knight this soft reboot of a the Transformers franchise provides an interesting mix of comedy, action, and heart but often seems absent of a brain as many of the film’s driving plot points require basic logic disabled in the mind, that aside, the focus on family and heart touching emotions feel much more akin to the world of Spielberg as opposed to the world of Michael Bay (who serves as a producer on the film). Furthermore, comedic beats from John Cena as Agent Burns add the necessary chuckle to help keep levity on the level. Plus with a runtime just under two hours, this transformer flick seems mercifully short in comparison to all of its predecessors, so there’s that relief. Fun! Bumblebee is rated PG-13.

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