Review – Black Panther and Avengers: Infinity War (2018)

by Kevin Muller

It’s hard to believe that the Marvel Cinematic Universe, or MCU, is celebrating ten years. Throughout these films, we’ve seen many memorable moments, including when Iron Man first emerged, in the prototype of what his suit would become, to the God of thunder, Thor, wielding his hammer in a battle with Hulk, that made the green guy become helpless and, of course, when the original Avengers first came together. It has been one hell of a ride. One other constant has been the very serious threat of someone named Thanos and how he must be prevented from obtaining the Infinity Stones that are spread across this cinematic world.

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Review – American Crime Story: The Assassination of Gianni Versace (2018)

by Kevin Muller

Ryan Murphy has been a gift from God for FX.  Over the past eight years he has given us American Horror Story, Feud, Glee, and most recently 9-1-1. Four out of the five mentioned have won countless awards. In 2016, Murphy gave us a new series called American Crime Story, which was about the trial of OJ Simpson. As with Feud and American Horror Story, each season has its own story with its own characters and conflicts. The series won countless awards for acting and as a series overall.  Once again, it was a major win for FX. What would Murphy follow up with for season 2? There were ramblings about Katrina, which will now be season 3, but he ultimately decided to look at the death of Gianni Versace and the hunt for his murderer, Andrew Cunanan. Murphy, a proud and outed gay man, would definitely give one of the gay community’s greatest icons the proper treatment, right? Well, that is where the series becomes conflicted. It isn’t with the acting. All the actors, including Edgar Ramirez, as the title character; Penelope Cruz, as his sister Donatella, and even Ricky Martin, as Versace’s lover, Antonio D’Amico, are all fantastic. The production value is incredible to boot. Even Darren Criss, more on him later, is career defining as Cunanan. The problem lies that the title character isn’t really the main focus of the piece, and when he is, the story is incredibly fragile.

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The Best and Worst Movies of 2017

by Kevin Muller

The Worst Films of 2017

10. Suburbicon

George Clooney took a shot at directing a film that was scripted by the Coen Brothers.  Unfortunately, the groundwork laid by the brothers wasn’t strong enough for Clooney to make a good film. It is spectacular failure. The first half of the film leads us through an interesting story that drops the ball in the second half. Clooney decided to combine an unproduced script, a crime film, and the true story of a black family living in a white suburb, into one movie. The problem is that both scripts have totally different tones and themes that could’ve worked if they had their own movie, but by mashing them together, it created a narrative mess that you can’t pinpoint where it starts and ends.

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Oscars 2018 – Predictions

by Kevin Muller

Most people get excited for the beginning of the year due to the proximity of the Superbowl to the New Year.  For me, I also get the Academy Awards, which is the Superbowl for film fans.  Though the Patriots, and Brady, losing to a team who never won and that no one believed in, was maybe the greatest narratives of the year.  Let’s see who is nominated in each of these major categories, along with my personal picks, and who I think will take an Oscar home.

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Review – Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing, Missouri (2017)

by Kevin Muller

Sit back and buckle up for the wildest ride of the year. Martin McDonagh’s Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing, Missouri is a masterpiece and the writer/director’s best film to date. This is a film with balls that isn’t afraid to offend, while providing us with a story that is as hilarious as it is profound, this one is a true winner.

It has been too much damn time for Mildred, an amazing Frances MacDormand, since the gruesome death of her young teenage daughter, who was raped and burned to death a few months before the film begins. It doesn’t help that the last time they saw each other they had a typical mother/daughter fight that concluded with things said that both did not mean. The police haven’t made any progression on the case that seems to be the afterthought. In an act with desperation and rebellion, Mildred purchases three vacant billboards that sit outside of town. On them, she asks the police, specifically Willoughby, who is perfectly played by Woody Harrelson, why it is taking so damn long to solve the case? While Willoughby is bothered by it, it is a younger, and troubled, officer at his department, Dixon, who really takes it to heart.  Dixon is played with such ferocity by Sam Rockwell. He is a simple minded man, who is the last person who should be an officer of the law. Mildred’s bold move acts as a catalyst, for not only the movie’s plot, but the spirit of the town. Everyone tries to fight her, but she refuses to give up.

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Review – Justice League (2017)

by Kevin Muller

The anticipation of Detective Comics’, or D.C.’s, top tier of heroes coming together is something  that just isn’t felt by fans of the comics, but also anyone who has been following the development of this project. In 2013, Zack Synder was put in charge of directing the starting point for the D.C. universe, Man of Steel. That film was a success and was followed by the even more successful, but awful,  Suicide Squad. In the same year we were also given the match up comic book fans have been waiting for with the underwhelming Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice. Though it was Wonder Woman that acted as a gleam of light for the universe.  Anchored by an incredible performance by Gal Gadot, it became both a financial and critical success. Synder was hard at work on his vision of Justice League when tragedy struck him and his family with the death of his daughter.   Joss Whedon, who had experience dealing with a group of heroes with the first two “The Avengers,” was brought on to finish about 20% of the film Synder had left unfinished.   Then there were rumors that Whedon was specifically brought on to change the tone of the Sydner’s vision of this film and future DC films by adding the lightness and humor missing from Batman  V Superman: Dawn of Justice. So, with all that, how does a hybrid of two different styles pan out?   Does it work or does it destroy the leg up  Wonder Woman contributed?

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Review – Murder on the Orient Express (2017)

by Kevin Muller

Before comic book films became the craze, the holiday season was reserved for films that had big casts, a large budget, and usually an adaptation of a famous novel. Who doesn’t want to see their favorite stars all together on screen acting with one another?  Murder on the Orient Express has been adapted many times as both a film and a TV production. This time, Shakespearean lover, and the man who brought the mighty Thor to the silver screen, Kenneth Branagh, takes a shot at the famous Agatha Christie murder mystery.

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