Review – Marriage Story (2019)

by Armando Vanegas

After watching this movie, I’ve decided to retire from being a fan of movies because Noah Baumbach’s latest movie Marriage Story  finally did what I’ve wanted from movies and nothing else will compare. The Squid and the Whale was one of the movies that made me a fan of movies because it made me realize you can talk about real things like marital issues onscreen and it can impact the audience talking about those things. It doesn’t have to make you laugh, be scared, or excite you. It can also stick with you on a more personal level. Writer/director Noah Baumbach had that special touch, even back then. I think since Squid, I’ve wanted Baumbach to keep going into that well. Perhaps, I have personal things that made me want this. It also was helpful to learn that he was a child of divorce and that it was a semi-autobiographical look at his parents’ marriage. How he touched on divorce in Squid made me feel like I was seen. Marriage Story didn’t exactly fulfill those satisfactions if only because I didn’t need that itch scratched anymore. I’m young and I just want to enjoy whatever’s out there. When I saw Squid, I wanted more time in that world with these characters because it was so engrossing to me. Logically, there’s no way for this to continue because it felt complete enough even though the ending could be stronger. The movie gods have answered as this is essentially a spiritual sequel to The Squid and the Whale and it has that incredibly written Baumbach dialogue to listen to for 2 hours. It seems that he’s gotten his takes on how divorce sucks out of his system and I did as well.  As far as I can tell, movies are now dead and I will leave this movie life and become a cobbler. But before I do, I’ll talk about Marriage Story. Semi-based on Baumbach’s previous relationship, the movie deals with a theater couple who decide to go through with a divorce. As they realize, this process is extremely difficult and rough as they deal with ruthless lawyers and surprise reveals about each other. If The Squid and the Whale was the breakthrough EP, then Marriage Story is the mic drop and the surefire hit that defines  Baumbach as one of the great American directors of his time.

Continue reading

Review – Toy Story 4 & Aladdin (2019)

by Kevin Muller

It may seem that Disney is becoming a juggernaut of the film industry by buying every single part of Hollywood, but they have always been the forerunner in family entertainment. In the 90’s, they were the King of the animation field with classics such as The Little Mermaid, Mulan, and Beauty and the Beast. The latter was the first animated film to be nominated for “Best Picture” when the nomination pool only allowed five films. There was also The Lion King, which will soon have a photo-realistic remake that will have its own review, instead of a shared one. Personally, Aladdin was always a favorite, mainly due to Robin Williams’s legendary turn as the lovable Genie. On top of that, the film also had catchy songs and overall fast and frantic attitude.   Unfortunately, shortly after that film delighted audiences, the downfall of hand drawn animation was about to begin with Disney teaming up with a new company called Pixar. We all know outcome of that merger, but it was 1995’s Toy Story that changed the game forever. Now, both these 90’s properties are back to see what they can do with better technology and an even wider audience.

Continue reading