Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021)

Not many younger fans know this, but once upon a time, before Marvel became another arm of Disney, Spider-Man was basically Mighty Marvel’s equivalent to Mickey Mouse. He was the most relatable, most accessible, and most liked hero, even when the company was as its worst. Easily the biggest movie of 2021, “No Way Home” is a glimpse in to what makes Spider-Man such a timeless hero and why so many people continue connect to our favorite Friendly Neighborhood Wallcrawler.

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Ghostbusters: Afterlife (2021)

Fans have long awaited the proper third film in the “Ghostbusters” series, and while it’s become very apparent that the original cast is much too old to carry the series further, “Afterlife” is a great step in to a new world. Like most legacy sequels of beloved movie series, “Afterlife” pays great reverence to the original, while also carving out a path for a new direction and brand new cast of ghost fighting heroes. While “Afterlife” is very light in laughs and levity, it stills comes out in the end as a fantastic follow up that clicks right in to the first two films beautifully.

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Frankenstein’s Daughter (1958): The Film Detective Special Edition [Blu-Ray]

The Z Movie to end all Z movies, “Frankenstein’s Daughter” is both a cult classic and a classic piece of cinematic trash. It’s a god awful attempt to take the Frankenstein tale and retro-fit it in to a teen horror drama about coming of age, legacy, and uncomfortable scenes of men aggressively hitting on high school girls. In either case, “Frankenstein’s Daughter” is something of an anomaly, it’s a movie that’s been widely accepted within the genre, but it’s just so painfully bad when you finally experience it.

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“I Know What You Did Last Summer” Is a Failure on Every Level [Digital]

After whatever that MTV reboot of “Scream” was, networks and companies seem to be learning all the wrong lessons from it. Rather than breathe new life in to a once solid slasher series, Amazon has botched it from out the gates. Instead of a tense, white knuckle slasher/murder mystery, Lois Duncan’s novel is adapted in to an erotic teen drama thriller. Think less “Slasher” and more “Riverdale.” It’s a glacially paced glorified drama with a horror tint that downplays the horror and slasher aspects of the aforementioned movie series in favor of gratuitous sex, pointless nudity, and droning dialogue.

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Under Wraps (2021)

I guess the mission statement for Disney lately is to modernize a lot of their classics, no matter how big or small by—copying them to the tee. “Under Wraps” is the much anticipated remake of the original 1997 TV movie that doesn’t realty offer a new angle toward the movie. Even though it’s a perfectly good Halloween treat and solid DCOM, it misses out on emphasizing the more emotional themes the original didn’t.

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Fear Street, Part 3: 1666 (2021)

Director Leigh Janiak’s creation of the “Fear Street” trilogy has to be one of the most impressive cinematic accomplishments this year. It’s tough to find a horror trilogy where every film feels different, but clicks together like a puzzle, so seamlessly. “Fear Street” had every chance of being a complete mess, especially with how it goes backward in time to fill in the gaps in its narrative. Not to mention the fact that it trusts audiences will return is ambitious and often impressive.

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Super Hot (2021)

I think it is possible that director Taylor King has created one of my favorite indie films of the year. I didn’t entirely know what to expect going in to “Super Hot” but it ends up being such a great horror comedy, despite some small flaws here and there. “Super Hot” has its inspirations close to its chest, combining “Booksmart” with “The Craft” to form this unusual amalgam that works shockingly well.

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Fear Street, Part 2: 1978 (2021)

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.

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