Author: Ian D.

Spider-Man: Homecoming

Over the last decade I’ve collected many nits worth picking with the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  Little things bug me here and there and they seem to plague each film to varying degrees.  That’s not to say the MCU is without merit – the accomplishment of creating such a universe is somewhat staggering – but the problem often lies in tone and execution.  The films of the last 5-years have felt like assembly line creations, arcs we can digest easily and never remember.  It felt lazy.  Smash-cut to 2017 and we’ve already had two-spectacular superhero films (Logan & Wonder Woman) that avoided this pratfall simply by allowing the characters and story to stand on its own.

Read More

Baby Driver

There are many things to admire about Director Edgar Wright.  He’s an incredible young visionary that writes and directs with such verve and candor that it’s impossible to mistake his work for someone else.  That’s what I love most about Wright, how singular his vision is.  From Shaun of the Dead to Scott Pilgrim vs. the World – he’s never compromised (which is probably why his Ant-Man movie never happened) and if you ride for his style you should be very excited about Baby Driver.

Read More

The Book of Henry

In 2014, a very popular novel The Fault in our Stars was adapted for the screen.  I don’t think it’s a particularly good movie but that didn’t stop me from being completely manipulated by its maudlin nature and sweepingly romantic indie soundtrack.  I wept like everyone else in the theater for those cancer patients and their teenage romance.  Very similar tactics are employed for the first two-thirds of The Book of Henry – Colin Trevorrow’s new film. 

Read More

It Comes at Night

There is a stillness at the center of Trey Edward Shults’ new film It Comes at Night that’s disquieting and at times completely upsetting.  Shults imbues the film with this, creating a sense of dread that’s unrelenting.  His characters feel it through extreme closeup as their already well regimented and very remote world seemingly closes in around them.  It’s a testament to Shults as a filmmaker and also a screenwriter.  He shows us all we need to know while never relenting from the dreadful paranoia encompassing his film.

Read More

Wonder Woman

Let’s get this out of the way first – Gal Gadot IS Wonder Woman.  The Israeli-actress is so convincing as the do-gooder Amazon princess that I wanted more.  Her wonderfully earnest performance brings out the best in the rest of the cast while anchoring the film in a stark WWI reality.  It’s a credit to Gadot and Director Patty Jenkins that they accomplished this.  Diana is as much an idealist as Superman but her film employs it with much more candor while Supes has been bogged down by Snyder-smashing masculinity.  Diana is not only the superhero we need in 2017, she’s the superhero we’ve always wanted.

Read More

Recent Columns