Inside Out 2 (2024)

Now Exclusively in Theaters.

2015’s “Inside Out” felt like such a genuine and sincere attempt to figure out not just emotions but the importance that both negative and positive emotions can have. It simplified itself through normal subconscious cues like colors and characters, but through it all “Inside Out” was touching and a complex look at dealing with our feelings and learning to accept them. “Inside Out 2” is a perfectly okay follow up that has a lot to live up to. Its predecessor set the bar high and the sequel never quite hits that bar. “Inside Out 2” is stuck in the middle of trying to figure out what it’s trying to say and hitting that bottom line of introducing new characters for the sake of merchandise sales.

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Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead (2024)

Now Streaming on BET+.

1991’s “Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead” is one of my favorite 90’s films. It’s also a painfully underrated comedy that, despite being marketed as a dark comedy, is actually a charming, fun coming of age teen comedy in the vein of “Working Girl.” Wade Allain-Marcus’ remake is shockingly not a bad movie at all, either, it’s just completely unnecessary. I don’t think anyone was begging for a remake of “Don’t Tell Mom…” when all was said and done. But lo and behold we got one, and I’m still not sure who this movie is aimed towards.

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I Saw the TV Glow (2024)

Now In Expanded Release in Theaters.

I think most of the reason why Jill Schoenbrun’s horror drama has clicked with so many people is that many audiences can relate to the horrors of getting older. The whole idea of getting older means that you bid farewell to what was, and remain on course what what’s ahead. Some of us are stuck in a position where we can’t say goodbye and this has caused many to re-think their whole lives in general. This is essentially the premise for “I Saw the TV Glow” which is a movie that begins primarily like a Creepypasta but takes on a whole other meaning by the time it comes to a twisted close.

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Humanist Vampire Seeking Consenting Suicidal Person (2023) [Make Believe Film Festival 2024]

I’ve been enamored with the French-Canadian “Humanist Vampire…” since the beginning of the year but didn’t quite have the means of being able to view it. I’m glad that I finally had a chance to, since Ariane Louis-Seize creates such a charming, and interesting coming of age horror comedy that re-thinks the whole idea of being a vampire, while also using it as an allegory for restarting our lives. Louis-Seize’s horror comedy, while not entirely original, still excels on being a great slice of life that embraces the absurdity of its premise.

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A Most Atrocious Thing (2023) [Make Believe Film Festival 2024]

Directors Christian Hurley, and Ben Oliphint’s horror comedy is a movie that I bet they had a ton of fun filming. They emphasize this idea with the credits including bonus blooper reel. Sadly, none of the fun translated in to actual entertainment for me, even when I tried to see it at its level. But the movie is eighty two minutes in length (not counting the closing credits), and the mayhem doesn’t actually begin until a half hour in to the movie.

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Suncoast (2024)

Now Streaming on Hulu.

Laura Chinn’s “Suncoast” feels like it comes from a very deep and personal place. It’s a movie about loss, and grief, and trying to find a way to live again when a big piece of you has been taken out of your life. Suffice to say “Suncoast” is one of the first great films of 2024 and an excellent drama I’d place right alongside gems like “Ladybird” and “The Perks of Being a Wallflower.” Chinn manages to evoke so many core emotions about coming to terms with death and how tough it can be to move and move forward after happiness has disappeared. How do you begin? Where do you begin? And most of all, when can you begin?

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Turning Red (2022)

Will be in Limited Re-Release on February 9th; will be preceded by the Sparkshort Kitbull. Check Local Listings.

You gotta give it to Pixar, when they decide to do something new, they approach it head on and go all the way. Although subtlety was never their strong suit, here “Turning Red’s” one big noticeable element is that it’s about as subtle as a brick on the head. With Domee Shi directing, “Turning Red” is a decidedly very Asian flavored coming of age film that’s drawn in the style of anime and Manga.

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