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Tuesday, January 19, 2021

[6.50/10] Minari (2020)

Minari (2020)

Quick Review: An intimate look at immigrant S.Korean family pursuing the 'American dream' in the 80s, set against the lush backdrop of rural Arkansas -- one that depicts their struggles in a genuine manner and with great depth -- "Minari" is a very simple and uneventful, but well-told story of family bonds and human's connection to nature, with the most moving bit being the younger-older relation between David and Soonje, who Yuh-Jung Youn makes the most distinguished character.

[5.75/10] Kajillionaire (2020)

Kajillionaire (2020)

Quick Review: Every bit as quirky and eccentric as its title suggests, if in a kinda forced and artificial way, this one plays it as an urban heist dramedy about a hippie family of 3 who go for every penny, which puts them in tons of cringey situations, but in its core, it's about the cold relationship shared by the parents and their moody weirdo daughter, who builds an oddly endearing bond with a surprising character involved later on in the film that turns out to be the best bit about it.

Monday, January 18, 2021

[6.00/10] Outside the Wire (2021)

Outside the Wire (2021)

Quick Review: Pretty dragged out, hence overlong, far from clever, and stealing ideas from other sci-fi and action films, yet flaunting some slick droid effects, suitably dingy imagery and effectively-staged gunfires and high-octane combats, "Outside the Wire" disappoints with a trite super- soldier concept and derivative 'man vs machine' war scenario with a few easy-to-predict twists along the way, but it's still a showdown of Mackie's charisma and his ability to carry a movie, if a middling one.

[6.25/10] Dating Amber (2020)

Dating Amber (2020)

Quick Review: Crude, if adorable and funny, yet poignant, but above all delightfully Irish, this is not your typical teen rom-com, nor a corny dramedy -- revolving around two gay teenagers who act like a couple to avoid bullying and dealing with identity crisis and the struggles of coming out, as well as those being a misfit -- "Dating Amber" ends up a true crowd-pleaser, thanks to the chemistry between the lovely leads and the truly sweet friendship their likable characters share.

Sunday, January 17, 2021

[5.50/10] Shadow in the Cloud (2020)

Shadow in the Cloud (2020)

Quick Review: A campy blend of war movie and creature feature, this small-scale action horror with wacky concept relies on Moretz's ability to carry it, being 90% focused on her alone, and though she does a great job, and makes out the best of the narrow setting her fierce character is placed in, the end result is a brisk and occasionally thrilling, if uneven and senseless romp, whose sappy twist midway somewhat takes away from all the 'monster fun'.

Friday, January 15, 2021

[4.75/10] Locked Down (2021)

Locked Down (2021)

Quick Review: Shot and set amid the current pandemic, it centers on a broke-up couple stuck in a house during lockdown, giving an intimate look at their messy relationship as a sample of the bigger picture in this situation, involving lies, confessions, sex, drinking, fighting, work and lots of talking, and showing Hathaways' tendency to overact, but this stagey chemistry-free rom-drama is simply a long set up for a heist sub-story in the third act, which turns out to be the only fun bit about it.

[6.50/10] Spontaneous (2020)

Spontaneous (2020)

Quick Review: An inventive mix of a passionate high school romance, cute coming-of-age story and dark, but wildly funny horror comedy with an explosive twist and tons of blood, "Spontaneous" is utterly delightful in its absurdity, blowing up bodies like balloons when you least expect, and splashing the screen with gore, but it's the love story of the feisty Mara and the sweet Dylan along with their tender chemistry that drives the film, with Langford giving one f**kin' blast of a central performance.

Thursday, January 14, 2021

[7.25/10] Pieces of a Woman (2020)

Pieces of a Woman (2020)

Quick Review: From the intense, nearly half an hour long home birth prologue sequence, filled with pain and anxiety, to the heartfelt finale, this is a deeply intimate story of loss and broken bonds that explores the contrary ways of coping with grief by juxtaposing the uneasy Sean played with true edge by LaBeouf and the seemingly numb, if quietly sorrowful Martha, who Kirby portrays brilliantly through her nuanced and affecting turn, which the film exploits to work as a character study too.

[6.50/10] Life in a Year (2020)

Life in a Year (2020)

Quick Review: Yet another teen love story with huge dramatic twist, but one that's quirky, adventurous, spirited, wild at heart, and genuinely romantic, indeed, "Life in a Year" is an emotional roller coaster of a film with focus on true love and devotion as priority in life, regardless of the devastating circumstances, which is entirely driven by the explosive and beyond credible chemistry between Jaden Smith and Cara Delevingne, the latter of which delivers her very best performance so far.

Wednesday, January 13, 2021

[6.75/10] Babyteeth (2020)

Babyteeth (2020)

Quick Review: A delightfully messy oddball romance between a kooky teen girl and a troubled, but caring older boy, boldly developing in front of the eyes of her eccentric parents, "Babyteeth" distinguishes itself from the trite genre with unpredictability, refreshing quirkiness and true dark edge, balancing out wacky humor, zany family dynamics and harrowing drama effortlessly, while benefiting from the naturalistic acting from its cast, and cool, proper 'Aussie style' in and outdoor settings.

[6.50/10] I'm No Longer Here (2020)

I'm No Longer Here (2020)

Quick Review: Probably the most authentic movie of 2020, in terms of tone, look, and acting, this Mexican drama feels like a plotless docu-like effort with no distinct direction, but that's exactly where its strength lies in, following the runaway journey of the eccentric, but kind, likable and charming Ulises, and depicting his realistically gritty, quietly moving, if never sappy personal story about dancing, dope, style, homesickness, street life, work, friendships, and the big struggles of fitting in.

Tuesday, January 12, 2021

[5.50/10] Mank (2020)

Mank (2020)

Quick Review: The crisp black-n- white cinematography and authentic period settings transport to the '30s era, Oldman acts his heart out, and Seyfreid shines bright, but "Mank" ends up being a self-absorbed and overwritten 'love letter to old films', alternating dull, draggy, overly talky scenes with real baffling flashbacks, whose incoherent, monotonŠµ story with no real tension or drama lacks soul as much as the monochrome visuals lack color, but worse, any of Fincher's flair to narrate.

[6.00/10] Hope Gap (2020)

Hope Gap (2020)

Quick Review: Dealing with the separation of a long-married couple whilst also re-connecting with their alienated son, "Hope Gap" is a lot less dramatic than it sounds, with the coastal setting and easy-breezy tone making the situation feel even lighter, however Nighy and Bening and are both terrific in their roles -- particularly the latter, who portrays despair and revival equally as good, plus, the film delivers an optimistic 'move on' moral message, aiming to end on a positive note.

Monday, January 11, 2021

[7.25/10] The Croods: A New Age (2020)

The Croods: A New Age (2020)

Quick Review: Wild, lively, often lol funny, and at times totally bananas, "A New Age" offers an even more opulent and vivid animation, rich in color and detail, as well as a zestful story about novel discoveries and cultural clashes, with hilarious take on modern inventions, and full of action, romance, thrills and laughs, besides, there are some imaginative creatures such as punch monkeys, earth sharks, and wolf spiders, and it's all loads of great fun!

[6.50/10] The Personal History of David Copperfield (2020)

The Personal History of David Copperfield (2020)

Quick Review: A truly fresh take on Dickens' classic that celebrates life and art, and delights with energy and charm, there's a lot going on in "TPHDC", but most elements of the rich and busy story are entertaining enough to keep you drawn in, and that along with the exuberant period visuals, and Patel's passionate turn as the charismatic, vivacious, and always curious title character, make this one a joyful journey through his creativity and peculiarity.

Sunday, January 10, 2021

CineMarvellous' Special: Our TOP 15 Best-Reviewed Horror Movies of the '00s

1. [REC] (2007) - 10 out of 10

2. The Descent (2005) - 9.75 out of 10

3. The Ring (2002) - 9.75 out of 10

4. Martyrs (2008) - 9.50 out of 10

5. The Others (2001) - 9.50 out of 10

6. The Orphanage (2007) - 9.25 out of 10

7. The Devil's Backbone (2001) - 9.25 out of 10

8. 28 Days Later (2003) - 9.00 out of 10

9. [REC]² (2009) - 9.00 out of 10

10. Let the Right One In (2008) - 8.75 out of 10

11. Cloverfield (2008) - 8.75 out of 10

12. Drag Me to Hell (2009) - 8.50 out of 10

13. Ginger Snaps (2000) - 8.50 out of 10

14. The Host (2006) - 8.50 out of 10

15. The House of the Devil (2009) - 8.25 out of 10

 

+ 15 Honorable Mentions:

Battle Royale (2000) | Dark Water (2002) | A Tale of Two Sisters (2003) | Jeepers Creepers (2001) | Dead End (2003) | Wrong Turn (2003) | Final Destination 2 (2003) | Dawn of the Dead (2004) | The Exorcism of Emily Rose (2005) | Slither (2006) | Taxidermia (2006) | The Mist (2007) | Inside (2007) | Trick 'r Treat (2007) | Paranormal Activity (2007) |
 

+ TOP 3 Horror Comedies: 


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Saturday, January 9, 2021

[6.25/10] All My Life (2020)

All My Life (2020)

Quick Review: Pleasantly romantic in its first half, yet truly devastating in its second, this one is inevitably manipulative, as it deals with young couple, whose future is shattered by a fatal illness, which instantly turns it into a sad, gut-wrenching, if barely sappy tear-jerker, but the chemistry between the leads is genuine, and the 'live for the moment' message works, though the best thing about "All My Life" is that it says out loud truths about life, which many people realize, but rarely admit.

Friday, January 8, 2021

[6.50/10] Nomadland (2020)

Nomadland (2020)

Quick Review: A realistically bleak and intimate character portrait of a wandering woman living in her van as an aftermath of recession, whose grittiness is enhanced by the docu- like camerawork and desolated, yet glorious scenery that represents the loneliness and 'happy' freedom of its restrained protagonist, played so effortlessly by Francis McDormand, "Nomadland" is quietly engrossing, at times sad, but never depressing, though frankly it barely hits as hard, emotionally, as it should.