Review: ‘Crimson Peak’ Reaches Impressive Heights

Actress Mia Wasikowska must be an English major at heart. Over the years, she has starred in adaptations of “Jane Eyre,” “Madame Bovary,” “Alice in Wonderland” and Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s “The Double.” Now, with “Crimson Peak,” she stars in a perfect love letter to Gothic literature. The Gothic genre is widely accepted as the birthplace of modern horror. As one of ... Read More »

Review: ‘The Final Girls’ is a Scream Come True

In the wake of iconic horror director Wes Craven’s death, it is appropriate and bittersweet that we are seeing a resurgence of the slasher movie satire he made famous with his “Scream” series. That film series has been adapted to television recently, and Fox debuted a similar show entitled “Scream Queens” only a few weeks ago. The public response to ... Read More »

Review: ‘The Martian’ is Undeniably Human

The term “deus ex machina” was used during the days of ancient Greek tragedies for when actors playing gods were brought to the stage on devices, like cranes, to save all of the characters and assure a happy ending. The term translates into English as “god from the machine.” These days, it is used as more of an insult to ... Read More »

Review: ‘Green Inferno’ Feeds on Grindhouse Tradition

“The Green Inferno” is one of the worst things I have ever seen. It’s disgusting, implausible, hateful and offensive in every possible way. You could even argue the movie is bad for society as a whole. That being said, I loved every minute of it. I thought long and hard trying to figure out if I had any major problems ... Read More »

Depp Brings Appropriate Weight to ‘Black Mass’

Great actors are said to disappear into their roles, and no actor tries harder to do that than Johnny Depp. It seems that every film he has done over the past several years has involved some sort of heavy costuming.     Most people assume he chooses his new goofy looks according to whatever movie he is in, but I ... Read More »

Review: ‘The Visit’ Provides a Wonderful Night

In 2002, director M. Night Shyamalan was put on the cover of Newsweek magazine with the caption, “The Next Spielberg.” At that time his meteoric rise in Hollywood seemed unstoppable, but since then, the speed of his rise has been put to shame by the trajectory of his fall. It would even be fair to call Shyamalan one of the ... Read More »

Movie Review: Praises ‘Ex Machina’

Right now, science fiction cinema is mostly a world of flashy, big-budget adventures. The “Star Wars” effect has rippled for decades, putting intimate, philosophical science fiction on the back burner. “Ex Machina” portrays how this genre is at its absolute best when it embraces special ideas as much as it embraces special effects. I love stuff like “Star Wars” and ... Read More »

Movie Review: ‘Mall Cop 2’ Has Nothing Good in Store

Cops are not very popular in America right now, a fact that will not improve with the release of “Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2.” The nation’s epidemic of racist police brutality is not a laughing matter, and neither is this movie. “Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2” is so unfunny that while I was watching it, I had to periodically tickle myself ... Read More »

‘It Follows’ Pursues Cult Status

I didn’t think any movie this year would be scarier than “50 Shades of Grey,” but “It Follows” pulls it off in the best way possible. “It Follows” is an old-fashioned creeper. So is my Uncle Larry, but he isn’t the one I recommend you see in a dark theater. “It Follows” is the kind of movie our parents went ... Read More »