Archive for the 'Movie Reviews' Category

Cleveland International Film Festival 2024: The Last Ranger (Short Film Review)

The Cleveland International Film Festival is an annual event where many fans make the pilgrimage to Playhouse Square, the second-largest theater district in the U.S. outside of Broadway. A seemingly endless number of films dot the viewing landscape each year, giving audiences a plethora of choices on what to see next. With blocks of short films being one of the highlights, I made it a point to randomly select a grouping of potential cinematic prowess, but what that collection finished with was a production unlike any other in its class.

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The Fall Guy – Extended Cut (Movie Review)

The Fall GuyThe Fall Guy was one of my favorite television shows growing up in the 1980’s.  I would watch it each week with my dad.  I secretly had a crush on Heather Thomas at a very young age.  That bikini she wore in the opening credit sequence each week…ooh la la.  The Fall Guy is also special to me because it’s the very first TV show I ever recorded on a VHS tape.  We were poor growing up so one day my grandfather gave my dad a brand new VHS deck.  I was over the moon.  I couldn’t believe it.  We went home later that evening and I recorded that night’s episode of The Fall Guy.  I was so in awe of the fact that I could record something and watch it back any time that I think I viewed that episode three more times that same evening.  Therefore, one can kind of come to the conclusion that The Fall Guy was responsible for my love of home media products and technology.  That sounds good to me! Continue reading ‘The Fall Guy – Extended Cut (Movie Review)’


Gran Turismo Revs A Solid Underdog Story (Movie Review)

Gran Turismo Movie reviewGran Turismo is a video game franchise of which I have owned every title of on every Sony gaming console.  That also includes the VR and the portable handheld editions.  To say I am a fan of the Gran Turismo franchise is like saying cows love grazing on grass.  They live for it and so YES I’m a huge fan!  I have fond memories of building out my Mitsubishi Eclipses on the earlier Sony Playstation consoles.  Awww…the good ole days.  However, let’s be honest with ourselves.  Gran Turismo isn’t just a game.  Oh no!  It’s a full blown racing simulator.  And let me be the first to tell you or maybe the second or third depending on how many reviews you have read thus far.  This movie proves Gran Turismo is the ultimate racer driving simulator.  Definitely do not try any of this at home, but do read my full Gran Turismo review below to find out why. Continue reading ‘Gran Turismo Revs A Solid Underdog Story (Movie Review)’


Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One (Movie Review)

Mission: Impossible Dead Reckoning Part One Movie ReviewI’ve been told this is my “mission” if I choose to accept it.  Well Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One got me out of movie review retirement so it looks like I accepted it.  It’s been over a year since I reviewed a film with my last being last year’s Batman flick.  And no I’m not going to use any corny John Wick crack like “yeah I’m thinking I’m back.”  I accepted this review outing simply because I am a huge fan of 2018’s Mission: Impossible Fallout.  I’m going to get blasted by what I say next, but I got to be honest with myself.  I wish they would have ended the franchise with the movie Fallout.  Ethan Hunt got everything he wanted in the end and it’s a perfect movie to me, but I digress. Continue reading ‘Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One (Movie Review)’


The Lake (Film Review)

It’s been a short while since the last Pacific Rim film or Godzilla vs. Kong, but we are due for a good kaiju film, are we not? Straight from Thailand comes The Lake from writer Lee Thongkam who also co-directed with Aqing Xu. Although it’s a 2022 film, it is just now making its way across the Pacific to the shores of the States. Billed as a sci-fi, horror, thriller, The Lake clocks in with a one hour and 44-minute runtime and bills itself as “Godzilla’s water brother from a Thai mother!” That’s cool and all, but does it deliver?

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Screamfest 2022 – Best Of Fest “Wrap Up”

Another year, another cinematic corpse laid to rest!  The lights have dimmed on the 2022 version of the Screamfest Horror Film Festival and it was one bloody good time.  We are closing down our coverage with our traditional ending piece with our own awards highlighting favorites in every category.  It’s time for the….

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Screamfest 2022 – Even More Film Reviews

Can’t get enough of that red stuff!  The blood is still flowing from Screamfest Horror Film Festival 2022, and while our continued coverage here at WhySoBlu.com is winding down, we have a few more treats in our review bag.  So for this second-to-last article (the last one on Monday will finish out the reviews with a big bang!), we’re checking out three more features and some shorts to keep the pumpkin candle lit! Check out the encapsulated reviews of features Mean Spirited, 8 Found Dead, and Give Me An A, plus a few short reviewed shorts to follow. It’s time for…”Even More Film Reviews!”

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Screamfest 2022 – More Feature/Short Film Reviews

The scares never stop at this year’s Screamfest Horror Film Festival (go to www.screamfestla.com for more details!), taking place October 11th – 20th at the infamous TCL Chinese 6 Theatres in LA at the Hollywood and Highland Center as it continues its reign of ruckus on the big screen.  Of course, WhySoBlu.com is keeping its own carnal coverage going by checking out as much unspooling evil as possible.  Today we’re slashing a massive amount of wicked wares in the form of a whopping four feature films and twenty-seven short film reviews for your encapsulated pernicious pleasure.  (And to keep in sync with their title, ALL short film reviews are…short!)  So from drug-addled honeymoons to emotion in the apocalypse, check out the skinny via…‘More Feature/Short Film Reviews!’

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Screamfest 2022 – Four Feature Reviews

Thank goodness horror has its own holiday!  Just in time for some pre-Halloween fun, the undying Los Angeles-based SCREAMFEST HORROR FILM FESTIVAL 2022 (go to www.screamfestla.com for more details!) taking place October 11th – 20th at the TCL Chinese 6 Theatres at the Hollywood and Highland Center is in full axe swing, and the flicks are flying like blood spatter from blunt force impact.  (Gross, but you get the drift!)  We’re continuing our coverage of all things scary on the big screen with four new feature film reviews for those seeking a little something extra in their critical treat bag.  (No razors, promise!)  Check out the encapsulated movie reviews of The Loneliest Boy In the World, Deer Camp ’86, Shaky Shivers, and Matriarch below – it’s “Four Feature Reviews.” Continue reading ‘Screamfest 2022 – Four Feature Reviews’


Jordan Peele’s ‘Nope’ Delivers Out of This World IMAX Spectacle (Movie Review)

Nope, the third film from writer/director Jordan Peele, features the best use of IMAX cameras since Christopher Nolan’s Tenet. Yes, Tom Cruise’s Top Gun: Maverick ain’t no slouch in terms of aerial wonder on the most enormous screens possible, but Peele’s latest, which stars Daniel Kaluuya, Keke Palmer, and Steven Yeun, offers something else. Something… out of this world. Are such close encounters merely a new take on an old sci-fi trope? At the very least, the promise of Peele’s brand of sharp humor with a terrific ensemble will intrigue fans and possibly put butts in seats. So don’t look up or do. For what is seen, as they say, cannot be unseen.

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‘Elvis’ Delivers A Little Less Conversation, A Lot More Action (Movie Review)

The King is back. Elvis, the sixth feature from the heavy-on-the-spectacle director Baz Luhrmann (The Great Gatsby), is bursting at the seams with all the pageantry and showmanship expected from the Aussie filmmaker. Starring Tom Hanks as Mr. Presley’s shady manager, Colonel Tom Parker, and Austin Butler (Once Upon A Time In Hollywood) in a star-making performance as Mr. Presley himself, Warner Bros.’ big screen stunner might just be the out-of-body experience fans of Elvis have been clamoring for since his tragic death in 1977. For major fans, it’s time to get all shook up and head to your local theater. For those not into Elvis or just not that familiar with one of the pioneers of rock and or roll, suspicious minds may still be interested.

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‘Jurassic World Dominion’ Is A Prehistoric Blockbuster (Movie Review)

Jurassic World Dominion finally hits IMAX and normal-sized screens after production woes that included multiple shutdowns due to COVID. Like Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, this Colin Trevorrow-directed flick is marketed as an “epic conclusion” to the iconic series that changed VFX forever in 1993 with Spielberg’s top-notch direction. The hook for the third World pic is twofold: the dinos are finally (no, really, they are this time!) off the island, and a trio of original cast members have returned. True, Jeff Goldblum showed up for a couple odd judiciary scenes in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, but now he, along with Laura Dern and Sam Neill, are key players in Dominion. Jurassic World actors Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, and a host of others are back too. A trailer that featured a pair of DNA spliced velociraptors chasing motorcycle riding Pratt in Europe was intriguing. Universal hopes the nostalgia factor and audience’s seemingly endless love for dinosaurs will be more than enough to make this movie another smash hit at the box office. But is the film any good – or at the very least fun?

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Tom Cruise Pulls Off The Impossible For ‘Top Gun’ Sequel (Movie Review)

Tom Cruise is still the “Top Gun” in the sequel to the era-defining 80’s hit. Thirty-six years after the original, Top Gun: Maverick combines a heavy dose of nostalgia with state-of-the-art aerial stunts featuring “The Last Movie Star.” The danger zone is as big as an IMAX screen now. Director Joseph Kosinski (Oblivion) re-teams with Cruise with a script aided by Mission Impossible maestro Christopher McQuarrie. The film also stars Jennifer Connery, Miles Teller, Jon Hamm, Monica Barabaro, Glen Powell, and the Iceman himself, Val Kilmer. However, did this long-in-the-works sequel take my breath away?

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‘Downton Abbey: A New Era’ Is Perfectly Respectable (Movie Review)

Focus Features’ Downton Abbey: A New Era is the second full-length feature of PBS’ beloved series of the same name. Creator Julian Fellowes’ 21st century take about a fictional early 20th-century family, the Crawleys (and the people who serve them) has legions of fans. Each episode featured period-appropriate attire and just the right amount of stiff-upper-lip Anglofied mannerisms. All of it is (mostly) set at the lush estate, Downton Abbey. Plenty of the cast has returned: Michelle Dockery, Hugh Bonneville, Elizabeth McGovern, Laura Carmichael, Imelda Staunton, and more. Three years after the last film and seven years since the last episode aired, do we still have time for Lady Mary’s attitude, butler Thom’s shenanigans, and Duchess Violet’s wit? Clearly, we’ll always have time for Dame Maggie Smith’s one-liners. Either way, Old Hollywood (well, “new” back then) has arrived at Downton’s doorsteps…

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Doctor Strange and Scarlet Witch Battle In A Multiverse of Madness (Movie Review)

This weekend the summer movie season begins with Marvel’s Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. Although expectations are high, with some outlets predicting the 28th entry in the MCU to rake in the dough, becoming a cultural juggernaut like 2021’s Spider-Man: No Way Home is doubtful, even for the Sorcerer Supreme. The top-notch cast includes Benedict Cumberbatch, Elizabeth Olsen, Benedict Wong, Rachel McAdams, and new to Marvel, Xochitl Gomez. However, the big news is that this film marks director Sam Rami’s return to superhero antics since his Spider-Man trilogy from the aughts. Did the Drag Me To Hell maestro concoct a new kind of experience for the MCU? Can he top his web-slinging masterpiece, Spider-Man 2?

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‘The Northman’ Is Brutal, Basic Mythology (Movie Review)

Robert Eggers’ The Northman is the third major release from the artisanal director. He has been granted his biggest budget yet with a different studio, Focus Features, footing the bill. His previous features, The Witch and The Lighthouse, were A24 productions. The premise: a young prince’s father is killed by his uncle, and he vows revenge. This might seem like a Viking take on The Bard’s Hamlet, but Shakespeare’s play starring the most indecisive hero ever was inspired, in fact, by this Scandinavian legend. Thankfully, in terms of decision making, that leads to much violence, as Amleth (rhymes with Hamlet) isn’t on the fence when it comes to dismemberment. Alexander Skarsgård stars as the broody axe-wielding prince alongside a supporting cast including Anya Taylor-Joy, Willem Defoe, Ethan Hawke, Nicole Kidman, and everyone’s favorite Icelandic pop star: Björk. How does an authentically shot Norse tale fare in an era where Chris Hemsworth’s hammer-wielding superhero is the closest most audiences get to a Viking? It’s certainly not as funny as a Thor/Hulk team-up, but it’s way bloodier, so that’s something…

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‘Ambulance’ Is Bay’s Best In Years (Movie Review)

Looking past his Netflix venture, 6 Underground, Ambulance marks director Michael Bay’s first true return to the big screen since 2017’s Transformers: The Last Knight. No longer partnered up with Optimus Prime, this action-thriller is a remake of a Danish film that clocked in around 90 minutes. True to form, Bay’s version is over two hours to make room for some much-needed Bayhem. Set in Los Angeles concerning two bank robbers and an unlikely paramedic, the film features high octane thrills, real-life stunts, and impressive camerawork with Bay’s latest gizmo: drones. Does the native Angeleno’s return to the City of Angels mean more of the same, or does the hands-on blockbuster auteur have new tricks up his explosive, kinetically-edited sleeves? Did I mention he has drones now?

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‘Morbius,’ The Living Vampire, Sucks (Movie Review)

Three years after filming began, two years after the first trailer, Sony’s latest “In Association with Marvel” feature, Morbius, finally opens this weekend. Based on one of Spidey’s legendary Sinister Six, Dr. Michael Morbius is a “living vampire” (much like star Jared Leto), which might make you think of the Blade trilogy. Is this how the MCU gets the Day Walker? No, since this is exclusively Sony’s property, but as it’s been nearly two decades since the last Wesley Snipes outing, there’s an inherent curiosity for how our current era will handle the balance between bloodsuckers and superheroes. The cast also includes Matt Smith, Adria Arjona, Tyrese Gibson, and another Jared… Harris. Was Morbius worth the wait? Grab a pack of blue-colored artificial blood and drink up! Continue reading ‘‘Morbius,’ The Living Vampire, Sucks (Movie Review)’