It makes perfect sense for Warner to commemorate “Batman Year One” from 2011. While it’s not a particularly great movie, we are on the cusp of the release of yet another Batman movie that explores Batman in his early years as the Dark Knight. The re-release of “Batman Year One” is good business especially since it’s about ten years since it was released in 2011 to mixed fanfare. Ten years later, it’s still not a great movie, but it should help psych audiences up for “The Batman.”
Thankfully, Netflix and Leigh Janiak’s “Fear Street” film series has mostly lived up to its promise, hype and potential, offering a trilogy of films that are entertaining, complex, and steeped heavily in classic horror and folklore. For horror buffs that love horror that revolves around mythology, legends and stories about the past, the “Fear Street” series has managed to deliver two fold with a legend that has managed to carry the films quite well.
After waiting almost two years (with three delays) for “Black Widow,” there’s something poignant about its entire tone and the time of its release. With Scarlett Johansson leaving the MCU and the series moving on, “Black Widow” is a wonderful epilogue that fills in the holes about Natasha Romanoff once and for all. Natasha was always something of an enigma who we could never really make up our minds about, and the long overdue solo movie gives us the definitive look in to the life of a pretty noble heroine.
In 2020, America came to a halt ending most television series, and “Black Summer” was also stalled. Thankfully after a long hiatus it returns and with season two returning with a deafening bang, there couldn’t have been a better time for it to premiere on Netflix. “Black Summer” Season 2 is a follow up season that doesn’t pull any punches. While the first season explored everyday people fighting to escape, the sophomore season digs deep in to every day people fighting each other (and zombies) to survive.
I vividly remember watching “The Case of Hana & Alice” for the Fantasia Film Festival in 2015, and it was a movie that managed to stick with me for a while. I wouldn’t call it a masterpiece, but like a lot of its ilk, it’s a movie you have to go in with some knowledge acquired. “The Cast of Hana & Alice” is primarily a prequel, and a loose one at that, but it’s at least charming in its way, and allows a mystery to become the catalyst for an adventure with two best friends one fateful day.
It’s tough to believe that The Asylum is behind “Black Summer.” It’s definitely one of the biggest surprises of 2019 as I’ve made it no secret about my disdain toward the company and “Z Nation.” I thought the show was insanely dumb and boring, but I was very much open to “Black Summer.” Keeping my expectations rock bottom (because The Asylum has done horribly with zombie entertainment consistently) I was stunned to very much enjoy “Black Summer.” In fact if it continues its course and settles down a bit in season two, it might end up being one of the great zombie TV series.
It took us over ten years, but hell, we finally got a great live action “Transformers” movie. The only thought that came to mind while I was watching the opening ten minutes of “Bumblebee” was: Why didn’t we get this in the first place? Why did Sony opt for such a moronic, nonsensical, incoherent mess of a franchise, rather than deliver what is easily the best live action representation of the franchise I’ve seen so far. Everything in “Bumblebee” is the antithesis of what Michael Bay’s movies were, right down to the lack of racial stereotypes, and the jingoism. Granted, there is a meat head military hero with John Cena, but that’s a miniscule nitpick in a movie that’s just such a great experience from beginning to end.
The only studio that’s managed to build an interesting cinematic universe beside Marvel is Warner who’s “The Conjuring” cinematic universe has been a long stretch of movies varying in quality. The interconnected movie verse takes Valak the horrific nun from “The Conjuring 2” and gives her own film. What should have been an easy scare fest lending a spotlight to one of the most memorable monsters in “The Conjuring 2” ends up as yet another miss like “Annabelle.” I don’t know why it’s so tough for the producers of the “Conjuring” cinematic universe to produce spin offs for their series’ monsters.