Thursday, May 19, 2016

In Theaters Now - 5/20/16

(new releases in green)
  • The Meddler      Grade: A
  • Sing Street      Grade: A
  • Green Room      Grade: A-
  • Money Monster      Grade: A-
  • The Man Who Knew Infinity    Grade: A-
  • Love and Friendship      Grade: B+
  • Eye in the Sky     Grade: B+
  • Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising      Grade: B
  • Captain America: Civil War     Grade: B
  • The Nice Guys      Grade B
  • The Boss      Grade: B-
  • My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2    Grade: B-
  • The Jungle Book      Grade: C+
  • A Bigger Splash      Grade: C
  • Being Charlie      Grade: C
  • High-Rise      Grade: D

Additional Films Not Reviewed:

  • The Angry Birds Movie
  • Barbershop: The Next Cut
  • The Darkness
  • The Huntsman: Winter's War
  • Keanu
  • Mother's Day
  • Ratchet & Clank
  • Zootopia

Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising

I wasn't really a fan of Neighbors.  Too much Seth Rogen can be grating, and even a small amount of Zac Efron and Dave Franco is too much.  So I was not looking forward to this sequel, which basically looked like exactly the same movie.  And now that I've seen it, I can tell you it kind of is basically the same movie ... but a bit better.  It's hard to say why.  Maybe it's the subtle change from fraternity partying to sorority partying.  Or maybe it's because there's less of Dave Franco.  Or perhaps it was just my state of mind.  But for whatever reason, I found it to be an enjoyable, if unnecessary, comedy.  And sometimes even an ok comedy is just what the doctor ordered.

Grade: B

Who is this movie for?  Well, if you're looking for a great date comedy starring Rose Byrne in theaters now ... I highly recommend The Meddler.   But this one is decent and a better choice for a younger audience.

The Nice Guys

Most wide theatrical release films can be easily defined and fit neatly into a category.  They're generally either comic book movies, animated films, science fiction, or crude comedies.  Generally speaking, if it doesn't easily fit into one of those categories, it gets a limited release in select theaters or banished directly to VOD (even if it features big celebrities.)  The Nice Guys definitely fits into the latter category.  It's not easy to define.  It's a weird mix of silly comedy, dark comedy, action, violence, noir, and mystery.  And that seems to be a recurring characteristic of the films by writer/director Shane Black.  He doesn't like to get boxed into one genre.  To some this will be a fresh of breath air.  To others it could be seen as a hot mess.  I expect a wide range of reviews for this one.  And personally, I'm not really even sure what I think.  It certainly was a breath of fresh air, nestled between Captain America: Civil War and X-Men: Apocalypse.  I like that it feels original and unpredictable.  But, I'd be lying if I said I could explain the convoluted plot.  Perhaps I'm slow.  Or perhaps it's just too convoluted, or perhaps incomprehensible.  I'm not quite sure.  But it was fairly enjoyable and nice to look at while I tried valiantly to follow it.

Grade: B

Who is this movie for?  If you're tired of comic book movies, animated films, science fiction, and crude comedies, then give it a go.  It's no L.A. Confidential, and not as good as a Coen Brothers flick, but it's probably better than Inherent Vice.