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" There’s no god in here. "
— Joaquin Phoenix, Return to Paradise

MRQE Top Critic

The Legend of 1900

(review...)

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Recent Reviews

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

Sing 2

***1/22021, Garth Jennings

From great tunes comes great joy.

With its positive messages and peppy vibe, Sing 2 is a cure for the COVID blues.

Spider-Man: No Way Home

***2021, Jon Watts

The trouble stems from Peter himself this time around.

As the MCU’s first formal feature foray into the multiverse, No Way Home is a strange — make that Strange — mash-up that is both entertaining and tedious.

The King’s Man

***1/22021, Matthew Vaughn

Wild. It’s absolutely wild.

This drunk history isn’t everybody’s cup of tea, but it is one wild ride.

West Side Story (2021)

****2020, Steven Spielberg

Thank the movie heavens, West Side Story was shot on film!

Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story is the kind of exhilarating theatrical experience the best of filmmaking is all about.

Nightmare Alley

**1/22021, Guillermo Del Toro

The slow, precise journey is a hard sell with a payoff that isn’t entirely worth the effort.

Nightmare Alley is too gentrified to generate any bumps in the night.

House of Gucci

***2021, Ridley Scott

Like an authentic Gucci, the devil is in the details.

Emotional resonance isn’t House of Gucci’s strong suit, but it’s fun watching fashion royalty fall apart at the seams.

Ghostbusters: Afterlife

***1/22021, Jason Reitman

Afterlife has an enormous amount of heart that hasn’t been seen on the big screen since E.T.

Ghostbusters: Afterlife is ready to heal you.

Encanto

***2021, Byron Howard, Jared Bush, and Charise Castro Smith

The best parts stem from Lin-Manuel Miranda’s songs.

Encanto — Disney’s 60th animated feature — is a trip worth taking, even though the final destination is a little ho-hum.

Eternals

***2021, Chloe Zhao

Eternals is such an ambitious venture that it warrants admiration.

Eternals, the 26th theatrical release in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, is a tantalizing concoction of big ideas, mixed messages and missed opportunities that succeeds despite the shortcomings.

Last Night in Soho

***1/22021, Edgar Wright

Wright pulls all the threads together so skillfully, so slickly.

Last Night in Soho is a wild trip in time and mind.

Edgar Wright is one of those rare directors who can take moviegoers on a journey in which they don’t really know where they’re being taken until they get there. And when they get there — with a concierge awaiting their arrival — it’s quite sensational.

Dune (2021)

**1/22021, Denis Villeneuve

The unfilmable has been filmed. Again.

The presentation is as hot as the Arrakis mid-day sun, but Dune’s story is still as cold as the desert night.

The French Dispatch

***1/22021, Wes Anderson

If it’s a self-indulgence at first, it soon after becomes a shared indulgence.

With its focus on the craft of writing and a huge (as in ginormous) ensemble cast, The French Dispatch is genuine Oscar bait.

Halloween Kills

***2021, David Gordon Green

I’ts becoming clear there’s some sort of method to director David Gordon Green’s madness.

Halloween Kills is an absolute trainwreck of a movie, but it’s a trainwreck by design.

No Time to Die

****2021, Cary Joji Fukunaga

It all culminates in some breathtaking creative choices.

It’s a major achievement for any movie to make an audience feel something — anything. But to come to the end of the line with Daniel Craig’s fifth and final outing as James Bond and feel rattled not by the action but by the emotional core of the storyline is quite a testament to the narrative strengths of the Craig installments.

The Last Duel

***2021, Ridley Scott

It’s a case of narrative cleverness getting in the way of and clouding the heart of the story.

In Gladiator, there’s the great line, “What we do in life echoes in eternity.” That thought is the foundation for The Last Duel’s greatest value: seeing how those events from centuries ago still echo through society today.