Five Movie Reviews in Five or Less Minutes

I like to go to movies.  The lovely Deb and I see a lot of them, there not being a helluva lot to do in our little corner of Southern Illinois.  Accordingly, I’ve seen quite a few over the last few months.  Generally, it’s been a pretty craptacular summer for movies.  But here are a few thoughts on the ones we’ve seen.

Captain America:  Civil War–Fantastic.  Easily the best movie so far this year.  Marvel knows what it’s doing, likes and respects its characters and puts them through the paces without turning too emo or too dark.  Unlike…

Batman Vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice–Easily the worst superhero movie of the modern superhero movie era.  Too long, too dark and too stupid for words. But here’s the worst thing:  DC is completely tone deaf about its own characters.  Marvel:  We’ve got this franchise with a talking raccoon and a walking tree.  Sounds stupid, but what the hell, here you are.  DC: Our premier hero is a dull boy scout who’s just a little too goody-goody.  Better emo that fucker up!  This is the result. We get a DC cinematic universe where every hero has to be as dark as Batman, which means Batman, to be Batman, has to be so sick and twisted that he’s actually resorted to branding bad guys.  Ugh.  Cavill and Affleck are great, as is Gal Gadot.  The story is insipid, the direction is head-scratchingly inept and Jesse Eisenberg is acting in a completely different movie.  Horrible.  But what’s worse than that?

Ghostbusters–I’m not going to even ask if we really needed a reboot or a remake of this movie, one of the iconic comedies of the ’80s.  Because if this is the answer, there’s no need for the question.  Not. Funny. For. One. Damn. Minute.  I don’t care about the all female cast or whatever.  Just make me a funny movie.  This one wasn’t, and it was the first movie in more than 25 years that I’ve walked out on.  One hour in, no laughs, we left.

Secret Life of Pets and Finding Dory–The lovely Deb likes these kinds of animated movies.  I do not.  But I love my wife, and she is dragged along to many, many movies she could care less about.  So, I saw these two movies and tried valiantly to keep from grinding my teeth.  But even she agrees that the Secret Life of Pets was unfunny and Finding Dory was a boring one-joke film.

Star Trek: Beyond–I love Star Trek, just not the movie version created by JJ Abrams (I think he’s wildly overrated as a director, but that’s another story). The casting in these new Trek films is great.  The writing…well, not so great.  Horrible, in fact.  The first was one giant plot hole.  The second went for the feels by copying another Trek film (The Wrath of Khan) that earned those feels through 25 years of television episodes and movies.  This third one, though easily the most entertaining of the new three, is still badly written and one long poorly filmed action sequence after another.  Entertaining popcorn movie, but still not Star Trek.

We’re going to see Suicide Squad tonight, but I don’t hold out much hope since the initial reviews haven’t been promising.


About John F.D. Taff

John F.D. Taff is a writer, published author, raconteur and wrangler of angry stoats. He has more than 80 short stories and 7 novels published. He lives in the great, unspoiled vastness of the Midwest. He has a tremendous wife named Debbie, three pugs, Sadie, Tovah and Muriel, and three great kids--Harry, Sam and Molly. View all posts by John F.D. Taff

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