Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Crisp Criticism - "Rampage", "Isle of Dogs", "Truth or Dare", "Annihilation"

Julien Faddoul


When three different animals become infected with a dangerous pathogen, a primatologist and a geneticist team up to stop them from destroying Chicago.
Based on an arcade game and dopey as all hell: Bad CGI characters, corny jokes, a puerile plot (with villains who seem to be based on the Trump children) and a star who is deathly afraid that any audience member may not like him.

d – Brad Peyton
w – Ryan Engle, Carlton Cuse, Ryan J. Condal, Adam Sztykiel
ph – Jason Presant
pd – Barry Chusid
m – Andrew Lockington
ed – Bob Ducsay, Jim May
cos – Melissa Bruning

p – Beau Flynn, Hiram Garcia, Brad Peyton, John Rickard

Cast: Dwayne Johnson, Naomie Harris, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Joe Manganiello, Malin Ã…kerman, Jake Lacy, Jack Quaid, Marley Shelton, PJ Byrne, Breanne Hill, Matt Gerald

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Crisp Criticism - "Blockers", "Love, Simon", "Every Day", "A Quiet Place"

Julien Faddoul

Blockers *

Three parents try to stop their daughters from having sex on prom night.
Sensitive parental comedy that’s sweet enough I guess, but is continually undermined by its lowbrow humour and, like all modern comedies, a desperate need to be as sarcastic as possible.

d – Kay Cannon
w – Brian Kehoe, Jim Kehoe
ph – Russ T. Alsobrook
pd – Brandon Tonner-Connolly
m – Mateo Messina
ed – Stacey Schroeder
cos – Sarah Mae Burton

p – Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg, Jon Hurwitz, James Weaver, Hayden Schlossberg, Chris Fenton

Cast: Leslie Mann, Ike Barinholtz, John Cena, Kathryn Newton, Geraldine Viswanathan, Gideon Adlon, Graham Phillips, Miles Robbins, Jimmy Bellinger, Jake Picking, Sarayu Rao

Monday, April 2, 2018

Crisp Criticism - "Ready Player One", "A Wrinkle in Time", "Peter Rabbit", "Pacific Rim: Uprising"

Julien Faddoul

Ready Player One

When the creator of a popular video game system dies, a virtual contest is created to compete for his fortune.
A master filmmaker – who in the 1970s helped perpetuate the now obsessive need for the culture to soak itself in nostalgia for whatever occurred during one’s formative years – delivers us the ultimate ouroboros of nostalgia for nostalgia. Literally hundreds of visual and aural pop-culture references whiz by in an uncompromising celebration of the introductory years of the early movie blockbusters, recreated here with a $200 million budget. And that’s the reason why, in spite of any amount of skilful staging, dazzling CGI or clever stratagems (not that there’s a lot of any of these), this film had almost no chance with me, as, philosophically, everything the film propagates I find unconditionally abhorrent. We live in the era of the death-dealing nostalgia. Even on the most superficial level, what is more serviceable: A amalgamation of seemingly endless pop-culture references or creating something new that others may yearn to refer to? Dear reader, if spending 140 minutes playing spot-the-reference is your idea of a fulfilling experience, then by all means ignore me. But, personally, I have better things to do with my time.

d – Steven Spielberg
w – Zak Penn, Ernest Cline (Based on the Novel by Ernest Cline)
ph – Janusz Kaminski
pd – Adam Stockhausen
m – Alan Silvestri
ed – Sarah Broshar, Michael Kahn
cos – Kasia Walicka-Maimone

p – Donald De Line, Dan Farah, Kristie Macosko Krieger, Steven Spielberg

Cast: Tye Sheridan, Olivia Cooke, Ben Mendelsohn, Lena Waithe, T.J. Miller, Simon Pegg, Mark Rylance, Philip Zhao, Win Morisaki, Hannah John-Kamen, Ralph Ineson, Susan Lynch