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Dumbo - Review

Posted by Nick Spake on March 27, 2019 at 12:10 AM

Live-action Disney remakes work best when they do their own thing. Bill Condon’s “Beauty and the Beast” seemed afraid to stray away from its animated predecessor, occasionally coming off as a pale imitation. “Maleficent” took the “Sleeping Beauty” story in a completely different direction, but settled on ...

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Five Feet Apart - Review

Posted by Nick Spake on March 14, 2019 at 11:05 AM

“Five Feet Apart” is the latest entry in the dying teenager tear-jerker, a genre that’s become increasingly popular ever since “A Walk to Remember.” As far as these movies go, the best is probably “The Fault in Our Stars,” which was elevated by a wise screenplay and a career-best performance from Shailene...

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Nick's Fearless (Not Really) Oscar Predictions

Posted by Nick Spake on February 23, 2019 at 8:10 PM

This year's Oscar race can basically be summed up in a verse from a classic Queen song:

"It's been no bed of roses, no pleasure cruise, I consider it a challenge before the whole human race and I ain't gonna lose."

The season has been beyond unpredicable, but after weeks of stressing over these nominees, ...

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How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World - Review

Posted by Nick Spake on February 21, 2019 at 7:25 PM

In an era dominated by animated franchises, few have matured as well as “How to Train Your Dragon.” Perhaps that’s because the filmmakers have actually allowed the characters to grow. Hiccup isn’t the scrawny kid we met nearly a decade ago, developing into a strong leader who can command an a...

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Cold Pursuit - Review

Posted by Nick Spake on February 7, 2019 at 2:10 PM

Ever since redefining his career in “Taken” over a decade ago, Liam Neeson has become synonymous with playing grizzled old men who kill their way through hordes of henchmen, typically on some sort of revenge quest. Fifteen minutes into “Cold Pursuit,” a remake of a 2014 Norwegian film, it appears Neeson is going to give us...

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Arctic - Review

Posted by Nick Spake on February 7, 2019 at 2:10 PM

From “The Revenant,” to “All Is Lost,” to “127 Hours,” man vs nature movies have become increasingly popular in recent years. It’s debatable where exactly this genre stemmed from, although 1993’s “Alive” remains one of the defining survival movies for many. The harsh, freezing environmen...

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Serenity - Review

Posted by Nick Spake on January 24, 2019 at 11:15 AM

Just last week, numerous critics ripped “Glass” a new one, notably taking issue with its twist ending. While “Glass” was far from a perfect film, it has nothing on the ridiculous twists and turns in “Serenity.” This film is so preposterous, so confused, and so utterly insane that it would make even some of M. N...

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Glass - Review

Posted by Nick Spake on January 16, 2019 at 11:10 AM

When “Unbreakable” came out almost nineteen years ago, most people went into the theater expecting a spiritual successor to “The Sixth Sense.” Instead, M. Night Shyamalan gave us a superhero movie, a genre that had lost much of its street cred on the heels of “Batman & Robin,” “Steel,” and ̶...

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If Beale Street Could Talk - Review

Posted by Nick Spake on December 21, 2018 at 4:45 PM

“If Beale Street Could Talk” is about an African American man who is incarcerated for a crime he didn’t commit. The film isn’t so much about fighting the power, though, as it is about feeling powerless. Almost everyone in the film, from the rape victim, to the accused, to the family members involved, can identify with the ...

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On the Basis of Sex - Review

Posted by Nick Spake on December 21, 2018 at 4:40 PM

Ruth Bader Ginsburg is often regarded as someone who peaked later in life, as her popularity has only skyrocketed since President Clinton appointed her to the Supreme Court 25 years ago. Of course, if you’re familiar with Ginsburg’s full backstory, you’d know that she accomplished a great deal before becoming one of the first fe...

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