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" I may be on the devil’s hit list, but I’m on Jesus’ mailing list. "
— Robert Duvall, The Apostle

MRQE Top Critic

Ballroom

An exercise in atmosphere, with some really inspired surrealism —John Adams (DVD review...)

Trividic et al haunt the Ballroom

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Recent Reviews

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

Violent Night

***2022, Tommy Wirkola

It would’ve been great to get even more of Santa’s dark backstory.

Violent Night’s outlandish premise turns into a counterprogramming gift for the holiday movie season.

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever

**1/22022, Ryan Coogler

Wakanda Forever feels burdened. In some respects, it’s justifiable.

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is a mess, but at least it’s an ambitious mess.

The Banshees of Inisherin

***1/22022, Martin McDonagh

Martin McDonagh has crafted this story to echo through the decades.

It’s such a simple story, but under a master wordsmith like writer/director Martin McDonagh, the simplicity is deceptive.

Black Adam

**2022, Jaume Collet-Serra

Perhaps the biggest surprise about Black Adam is what a messy mash-up it is.

Black Adam is a setback for the DC Extended Universe’s efforts to rebound from a major identity crisis.

Halloween Ends

***2022, David Gordon Green

This conclusion to the multi-decade slasher saga is destined to be an underrated punk job.

“Could it be one monster has created another?”
Aaron Korey, investigative journalist (Halloween (2018))

Tar

****2022, Todd Field

Tár as a theatrical experience reinforces the power of film.

“You must, in fact, stand in front of the public and God and obliterate yourself.”
— Lydia Tár

Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile (2022)

**1/22022, Josh Gordon, and Will Speck

Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile scrapes by on its good intentions and the charms of the likable cast.

It’s cute, but Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile doesn’t quite rock.

Amsterdam

***1/22022, David O. Russell

While Amsterdam isn’t perfect, it is nonetheless fantastic for what it accomplishes.

At times Amsterdam struggles under the weight of its own complexity, but the remarkable cast proves worthy of the challenge.

See How They Run

**1/22022, Tom George

See How They Run is a languid curiosity piece that raises more questions than it answers.

The self-inflicted wounds of clumsiness trip up the cleverness afoot in See How They Run.

Bullet Train

***2022, David Leitch

Think of Bullet Train as Agatha Christie meets John Wick.

Bullet Train is a violent movie with a lot of soul.

DC League of Super-Pets

***1/22022

Super-Pets is a winner from several angles.

DC League of Super-Pets is the summer’s biggest surprise and the best comic book movie so far this year.

Nope

****2022, Jordan Peele

There’s plenty of darkness in Nope, but Peele makes this one a highly entertaining ride.

Say “yep” to Nope.

Jordan Peele’s Nope is a love letter to movies, particularly the slow-burn, slow-reveal storytelling of movies like Close Encounters and Alien. That era was also when movie trailers and promotional materials were built around protecting the movie’s mystery and thereby further fueling the anticipation. The movie had to be seen in a theatre (the bigger the better) in order to experience the big reveal firsthand.

Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris

***2022, Anthony Fabian

Ultimately, Mrs. Harris’ story is all about dignity and self-respect.

It’s hard to resist the delicate charms of watching Mrs. Harris and her pursuit of a bedazzling Dior gown.

Thor: Love and Thunder

***2022, Taika Waititi

Bale and Portman make this one a wee little bit better than the latest string of Marvel movies.

Thor: Love and Thunder isn’t one of the best MCU movies, but it is a marginally good episode in a series that’s lost its focus.

Minions: The Rise of Gru

***1/22022

There are no political or cultural agendas on tap here, this one is for the fun of it.

Minions: The Rise of Gru is so good, it’s the antithesis of Pixar’s Lightyear in virtually every way.