Rebel Moon – Part Two: The Scargiver (2024)

Now streaming exclusively on Netflix.

After being thrown a bone by Warner being able to bring his version of “Justice League,” he’s announced that these versions of his alleged “Star Wars Killers” known as “Rebel Moon” as more or less unofficial. They’re still movies in a sense, but not in his mind. He’s allegedly planning to release Director’s Cuts for both films, which includes potentially longer scenes and alternate takes on various scenes. So what is even the point of this whole shebang? Snyder is less an auteur and feels so much more like a brand manager trying to figure out an algorithm for a great movie–and he can’t quite synthesize the formula. He seems to base so much of his films around focus groups and buzz rather than instinct which make him such a terrible filmmaker through and through.

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McBain (1991) [Blu-Ray]

Now Available from Synapse Films.

Not enough people discuss the glut of post-Vietnam movies made in the 1980’s and “McBain” is one of the many. There were either the acclaimed prestige pictures like “Deer Hunter” or the more exploitative and cheesy films like “Rambo.” Glickhaus’ “McBain” falls in to the latter category where it watches a lot like a post-Vietnam big film version of “The A Team” or “The Wild Bunch” to where Christopher Walken leads a ragtag bunch of men to avenge their best friend.

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Transmorphers: Mech Beasts (2023)

Now Officially Streaming.

Just some advice: If your entire movie’s existence is centered on the fact that you’re an off brand Transformers, it’s a good idea to show us some transforming robots every now and then. After sixteen years (!), Asylum finally scrounged up enough to deliver a sequel to their first high profile mockbuster series “Transmorphers.” They offer us their answer to “Transformers: Rise of the Beasts.” If you didn’t like the “Rise of the Beasts,” odds are you might enjoy “Mech Beasts”—if you’re a fan of actors staring off screen and describing robots rather than ever showing them, of course.

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Stay Online (2023) [Fantasia Film Festival 2023]

Director Yeva Strielnikova’s “Stay Online” is literally a digital thriller for the modern age, and it’s never been more relevant a commentary on the importance of the internet than before. The digital thriller has become something of a niche sub-genre, and “Stay Online” practices that formula, but rather than a horror movie, implements the device as a means of exploring a modern war unfolding before our eyes. America has managed to stay embroiled in the conflict between Ukraine and Russia through various social outlets. One of the most important facets has been Tik Tok, which has dispensed unfiltered information before our eyes.

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BAD MOVIE MONDAY: Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker

I’ve never liked reviewing a film right when it comes out. You get caught up in the hype whether you like it or not, swallowed into the propellers of either the always positive marketing machine or the always negative social media rage engine, both of which are revving at full speed. So your review suffers because you can’t stay impartial in that sort of environment. It’s like trying to judge the power of a hurricane while standing in the eye of the storm. I saw this movie a few years ago. I won’t say that I “watched” it because that wouldn’t be accurate.

I played it on a streaming service and then sort of half glanced at the screen. Now, in the interest of science, I’m going to watch it again because I feel it’s a good example of what I like to call “advertiser friendly corporate content.” This is the sort of movie that has an insultingly low opinion of its audience. It’s cynical, insincere, soulless, lazy, and ultimately empty. It’s to cinema what school cafeteria food is to cuisine.
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Sisu (2023)

Director Jalmari Helander’s “Sisu” is a bat shit insane action movie in a year filled with some pretty good action entries. It’s like Indiana Jones and The Punisher were mashed together with a hint of Jason Voorhees, and out came “Sisu.” It’s a Nazi killing, dismembering, mutilating, head stabbing, revenge saga that manages to competently take its paper thin premise and produces an absolutely gore soaked homage to exploitation action films of the seventies and eighties.

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Top Gun: Maverick (2022)

Much like the original, “Top Gun: Maverick” is a big jingoistic cartoon. But it’s a fun jingoistic cartoon. I say that as someone that didn’t like the original “Top Gun” so suffice to say I was hesitant going right in to it. After so many years left in film limbo, I was stunned it was so well received, as legacy sequels most of the time fall flat. While “Top Gun: Maverick” isn’t exactly a masterpiece, I could think of worse times to spend with an action movie; it’s definitely one of the better legacy sequels I’ve seen.

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