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" When I catch him, he’s gonna wish he hadn’t killed me when he had the chance. "
— Michael Jai White, Spawn

MRQE Top Critic

Human Capital

Italian film weaves three lives from different social strata into a complex whole —Marty Mapes (review...)

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Recent Reviews

These are our latest reviews of movies at theaters, at the art house, or at festivals.

Overlord

***

It’s equal parts war movie and horror movie - and it’s also a loving tribute to movies as a whole.

As far as blood and guts go, Overlord is a pleasant surprise.

The Grinch (2018)

***

During these chaotic times, it’s a relief to see this movie end with a wish for kindness.

This Grinch lacks spunk, but at least it’s wholesome and respectable.

Can You Ever Forgive Me?

***

It’s a nice bridge from McCarthy’s typically foul-mouthed, larger-than-life characters.

In this strong dramatic turn, Melissa McCarthy rebounds from the disastrous Happytime Murders with an Oscar-caliber performance.

The Nutcracker and the Four Realms

*1/2Joe Johnston, and Lasse Hallström

It’s all as mechanical as the tin soldiers featured in the climactic War of the Realms.

All the splendor of CGI and Tchaikovsky can’t crack this nut. It’s a holiday movie fiasco.

Halloween (2018)

*1/2

It’s been 40 years. And yet nothing’s changed in the world of mad slasher movies.

A novel idea quickly devolves into the frustratingly familiar.

First Man

***1/2Damien Chazelle

It’s refreshing to see smart people doing smart things on the big screen.

First Man has the right stuff.

Neil Armstrong. The first man on the moon. And this is the story of how he got there. What a journey of grit and spirit. It’s a great American story (complete with American flags) and it’s a great story of human endurance and ingenuity.

Venom

**1/2

There is the potential to go dark and subversive with this material.

Venom lacks bite.

Tom Hardy (Mad Max: Fury Road) and Michelle Williams (My Week with Marilyn). They’re a great pairing. Hardy is always fun to watch and Williams is an A-list talent who always brings credibility to her roles.

A Star Is Born (2018)

***Bradley Cooper

Maybe a centennial remake in 2037 will finally get it all right.

The latest version of A Star Is Born is a flawed gem.

This tale — as told in 1937, 1954, 1976 and 2018 — revolves around an alcohol-addled celebrity whose star is on the wane stumbling upon a fresh talent. The falling star meets the rising star. As he battles the bottle, he coaches her and watches her career soar. And they fall in love. But it’s a turbulent, challenging relationship that ends in tragedy.

Operation Finale

***

It should’ve studied up on Spielberg’s Mossad masterpiece, Munich.

Operation Finale is based on an intense true story, but it could’ve been told with a little more passion.

The Happytime Murders

*

If only this exercise in pushing puppet boundaries had the guts to include some substance.

This turkey’s all stuffing and no meat.

Alpha

***1/2Albert Hughes

This elegantly-crafted adventure story certainly deserves a good home.

Alpha is one of the year’s biggest and best surprises.

The Meg

**

There’s nothing fine here. And there’s nothing to blow the mind.

The Meg’s another summer movie extravaganza that winds up dead in the water.

Christopher Robin

***

Thanks to the CGI magic, Christopher Robin stumbles into a mild recommendation.

Like Winnie the Pooh’s favorite honey, Christopher Robin is a little sticky and a little sweet, and it’s certainly not served to everyone’s taste.

Mission: Impossible - Fallout

****

It’s the best so far, and that’s possibly this episode’s biggest odds-defying accomplishment.

This is what great summer movies are all about.

It’s the best so far, and that’s possibly the biggest odds-defying accomplishment in this sixth installment in the Mission: Impossible series, which debuted on the big screen 22 years ago. Time flies when you’re busy saving the world.

Skyscraper

*1/2

It’ll take more affectation than a Scandinavian accent to make a truly evil foil to Will Sawyer.

Skyscraper could’ve been the greatest action movie parody ever made. Instead, it’s just stupid.