Friday, December 2, 2022

Nanny

From writer/director Nikyatu Jusu comes a slow-burning drama that teases darkness and trouble around the edges surrounding a young woman far from her homeland and family who begins seeing and dreaming things she can't explain after taking a new job as the script waits to reveal just what is behind her haunting for nearly all of the film's 98-minute running time.

Anna Diop stars as Aisha, an undocumented nanny from Senegal who takes a job in New York working for a couple (Michelle Monaghan and Morgan Spector) in the Upper East Side taking care of their daughter (Rose Decker) while hoping to save enough money to bring her own child (Jahleel Kamara) to America.

Four Samosas

Set in Little India and fitting into the same sub-genre of comedy heist flicks like Wes Anderson's Bottle Rocket (but better), Four Samosas features a would-be rapper (Venk Potula) who bands together with his friend (Nirvan Patnaik), a repoter (Sharmita Bhattacharya) of a small free local paper, and a malcontent engineer (Sonal Shah) to rob a local grocery store run by the disapproving father (Tony Mirrcandani) of his ex-girlfriend (Summer Bishil) who has just gotten engaged.

Thursday, December 1, 2022

Leverage: Redemption - The Tournament Job

In "The Tournament Job" the team takes on an unscrupulous e-sports team owner (Pierson Fode) mentally and physically abusing his players for his own gain. The con allows Eliot (Christian Kane) to once again play a chef and offers Breanna (Aleyse Shannon) a larger role as a producer attempting to get their mark to publicly cheat. Although Leverage: Redemption has a different feel than the original series, "The Tournament Job" is one of the closest episodes of the reboot to a more classic Leverage episode including complications and a late twist, more of Parker (Beth Riesgraf) being Parker, some off-screen Hardison involvement, and a very public victory over the mark. Harry (Noah Wyle), who we learn is a gamer, also steps up with some non-legal help that turns out to be crucial to the con.

Daredevil #5

After stalling, or getting sidetracked with other matters, Matt Murdock's battle with the hand has finally begun. Having married Elektra in a Fist ceremony and unlocked new-found power for his followers, Daredevil turns to more recruiting as the Fist infiltrates the Myrmidon and frees any willing to join him. Along the way Daredevil will also need to deal with US Agent and various soldiers before the Fist disappears back into the either but not without leaving a message for Matt's old friends.

Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Willow - The Gales

So if Disney+ is resurrecting failed franchises more than 3 decades old and turning them into TV-series, does that mean I can expect a Condorman series in the near future? Set a generation after the events of 1988's Willow, we are introduced to Princess Kit (Ruby Cruz) and Prince Airk (Dempsey Bryk), the spoiled children of Queen Sorsha (Joanne Whalley) and Madmartigan on the eve of Kit's arranged wedding to Prince Graydon (Tony Revolori) when her brother is kidnapped by shadowy figures. Proving Willow's (Warwick Davis) prophecy of a coming darkness true, the Queen sends out a party to rescue her son led by her daughter, Kit's friend/lover Jade (Erin Kellyman), Graydon, and a thief (Amar Chadha-Patel) who is pardoned for guiding them on their journey.

Triangle of Sadness

Writer/director Ruben Östlund takes a darkly comedic view at the problems of rich people in Triangle of Sadness offering a bickering couple (Harris Dickinson and Charlbi Dean) brought together to further each of their modeling careers which blossomed into a real relationship, of sorts, who are invited aboard a luxury superyacht cruise if they agree to promote it on social media. All things considered, they should have stayed at home.

It's immediately obvious who Östlund has in his crosshairs. While not a class warfare movie exactly, our director takes pleasure in attacking ideas of overly-pampered wealth, beauty as currency, and the toxicity and obliviousness to remotely normal problems an abundance of money creates. While not subtle themes, the movie delivers what it promises with increasingly ridiculous sequences, even if the laughs it inspires are never as big as you hope.

All the Beauty and the Bloodshed

Director Laura Poitras' documentary examines the life of artist and activist Nan Goldin. The film touches on pieces of Golden's life including the crucible of her repressed childhood and discovery of photography and art as a method to deal with the world, her life and growth as a woman and artist in the transgender communities in New York and the post-punk drug culture of the Bowery, and her recent activism against the Sackler family and Purdue Pharma for creating and marketing OxyContin despite knowing its highly addictive qualities (which was the original subject for the documentary which was expanded to be a larger look at Goldin's life).

Narrated by Goldin, the film is filled with an amazing amount of Goldin's photographs both showcasing her work and offering snapshots from different periods of her life, the people in it, and the trauma tied to so much of her life.

The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special

While more successful than The Star Wars Holiday Special, there's not all that much to The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special other than a holiday message, reworking a character's backstory to create a familial relationship where none existed before, and bringing the oft-mentioned Kevin Bacon into the MCU when the actor is kidnapped by Drax (Dave Bautista) and Mantis (Pom Klementieff) as a Christmas gift to Peter (Chris Pratt). Bookended by some animated sequences, the budget of the special is quite noticeably less than the Guardians features (especially where Groot is concerned), but fans may get some mild enjoyment from the modest proceedings.

Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Rick and Morty - Analyze Piss

In an episode that sees the return of Doctor Wong (Susan Sarandon), Mr. Numbus (Dan Harmon), and a number of new D-list villains causing havoc, Rick (Justin Roiland) attempts to stop engaging them leading to Jerry (Chris Parnell) stepping up to becoming a hero. Putting characters in unfamiliar places, there's a lot going on in "Analyze Piss" where Jerry gets to prove himself and Rick discovers there isn't much happening in his life without the constant interruptions from characters like Nimbus, Cookie Magneto, or Piss Master (Will Forte). A Rick and Morty take on a hero story, "Analyze Piss" (despite its piss jokes) allows the cerebral Rick to follow his heart for a change and do some good.

The Human Target #9

With all the talks with various members of the JLI, there's a character that hasn't been shown or mentioned. A detective who could have helped with Chance's investigation. Although we don't see him here, the Dark Knight Detective is on Chance's mind as he's sure Batman is tracking the Human Target and Ice ready at any moment to swoop down for the death of Guy Gardner.

NCIS: Hawai'i - Curtain Call

The death of a sailor who was involved in top-secret training videos for the Navy leads NCIS to discover he isn't the only one who has been killed in recent days as another actor and the director of a safe house video both turn up murdered as well. With Lucy (Yasmine Al-Bustami) having left for her new job as agent afloat, Alan (Danny Kang) shows up as her temporary replacement. He's not the only familiar face as Charley 1 (Linc Hand) also shows up on the trail of the killings looking for one of his former students who he believes is responsible.

Pleasure

More than 2,000 years ago Aesop warned us: "Be careful what you wish for, lest it come true!" That idea is central to Pleasure, the stark look at the porn industry through a wide-eyed 19 year-old Swedish teen (Sofia Kappel) who moves to Los Angeles with dreams of becoming a star. While she initially sets boundaries, it doesn't take long for Bella Cherry to begin making compromises while desperately chasing fame hoping to earn a treasured spot on the most exclusive agency in town.

Monday, November 28, 2022

Stargirl - The Haunting

After making his appearance known to the Crocks at the end of the last episode, Icicle (Neil Jackson) returns home offering a message of peace (despite the whole murder thing just hours before). From there, Blue Valley's favorite son makes his public return to a shocked Barbara (Amy Smart) who is able to guess his role in the death of the Crocks without any difficulty. Meanwhile, the JSA help Artemis (Stella Smith) search for her missing parents leading them to discover the villain's lair and the fate of the Crocks at the hands of the JSA's proposed new ally against the Ultra-Humanite. While the Humanite is the looming threat, it's Icicle and the question of his role in Blue Valley moving forward (and the unique combination of fear, hatred, hope, and forgiveness his reemergence brings out from various characters) that is central to the episode.

Young Hellboy: Assault on Castle Death #3

The fevered delusions of Hellboy continue in Young Hellboy: Assault on Castle Death #3 as the young Hellboy, his dog, and his hallucination of his hero the Lobster make their way through a warehouse which Hellboy has taken to be a castle of zombies in the control of a dark wizard with magic the Nazis hope to acquire.

Simon's Cat - Teddy's Tale

Kung Fu - Rescue

The main storyline of "Rescue" involves Nicky (Olivia Liang) convincing Henry (Eddie Liu) to help in a dangerous and desperate mission to help save Pei-Ling (Vanessa Kai) by sending Nicky into the undead spirit realm to fight off the Harvester who is collecting the souls of the fallen and feeding them to Xiao. Although unsuccessful, the storyline does allow the audience to learn a secret about Nicky's boyfiend, foreshadowing new romantic challenges for Nicky in the future, and allow for the return of Zhilan (Yvonne Chapman) to the land of the living (this time as an ally for Nicky). While the reveal might be the bigger moment for this episode, moving forward, I'm most interested in seeing how Zhilan adapts back to the land of the living and what role she will find for herself moving forward.

Friday, November 25, 2022

Till

Centered around Mamie Till (Danielle Deadwyler), Till examines the prelude and aftereffects of the murder of 14 year-old Emmett Till (Jalyn Hall) who was abducted, tortured, and lynched in Mississippi after being accused of flirting with a white woman (Haley Bennett) in her parents' store.

Director Chinonye Chukwu's gut-wrenching film is broken into two-halves, the first 4o minutes gives us the dark foreboding leading to events which take place off-screen after Emmett is dragged from his relatives' home in the dark of night by armed men. The second-half of the film, which begins with the return of Emmett's body to Chicago, would spur Mamie into action struggling to get justice for her son in Mississipi, and, failing that, starting the second-half of her life as an educator and activist in the Civil Rights Movement.

Wednesday, November 23, 2022

The Fabelmans

Steven Spielberg's semi-autobiographical Hollywood version of his childhood ends on a high note with one of the best scenes of the year (which I certainly won't spoil for you here). The journey to that moment takes a little longer than it should and feels a bit like a greatest hits album rather than one coherent narrative, jumping around to important moments in the life of Sammy Fabelman (Gabriel LaBelle & Mateo Zoryon Francis-DeFord) which would mold him into the man and filmmaker he would become.

Glass Onion

Glass Onion offers the return of writer/director Rian Johnson and star Daniel Craig for another Benoit Blanc mystery. While it might not be quite as good as Knives Out, a near-perfect film that topped my list of Best Movies of 2019, Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery is still thoroughly entertaining. 

Guillermo del Toro's Pinocchio

Disney's live-action version of Pinocchio from earlier this year felt redundant and unnecessary. A shadow of the original animated film based on the classic story, the new version failed to capture much magic at all. Released only two months later, Guillermo del Toro's stop-motion version of Pinocchio breathes new life into the story you already know setting the Italian tale during the 20th Century when a grieving father's wooden recreation of his son is brought to life. 

Strangely Familiar World

Opening with heavy pulp-themes before shifting into a story of fathers and sons set against an unremarkable 4os or 50s sci-fi background, Strange World, much like Pixar's Onward (which also set sights on parental issues in a fantasy-sci-fi setting) is more underwhelming than anything else. While not a bad film, Strange World is simply okay thanks more to vibrant visuals of the hidden world discovered by our characters than the characters themselves or the plot they get wrapped up in. Without its visuals, Strange World would be as forgettable as many sci-fi films of the era it pulls from.

Tuesday, November 22, 2022

Leverage: Redemption - The One Man's Trash Job

The team targets a plastic exporter (Joshua Bitton) who has been dumping waste in local waters and threatening local fishermen who attempt to bring his crimes to light. Rather than targeting his wrongdoing, or attempt to bring it to light, the script gets a bit overly-complicated and takes a hard right turn after the discovery that our baddie of the week is also smuggling high-end antiquities. (Why not just make him a smuggler to begin with rather than adding the dumping storyline which feels like a tacked on feel-good bookend to the story which is, at best, only marginally connected?)

Zorro Masters II

As with the first Zorro Masters one-shot, Zorro Masters II reprints a couple of stories from Dell Zorro and Dell Four Color, each from writer/artist Alex Toth. Taking up the majority of the issue, "Gypsy Warning" involves the theft of all the gunpowder within the garrison, replaced by charcoal by the former comandante's wife and other conspirators working for the traitor known as the Eagle who also plan to kill Sergeant Garcia until Zorro swoops in saving both Garcia, and later the comandante's wife, from the Eagle's wrath.

Dragons: The Nine Realms - Empty Fireworm Nest

After returning from the Fire Realm, Alex (Aimee Garcia) discovers a small Fireworm dragon has stowed away in her pack and is discovered by her mothers. With the rest of the swam looking for its missing number, the team split up with Alex and Jun (Ashley Liao) looking to free the dragon before anyone else on ICARIS sees it and uncovers the truth about dragons, and Tom (Jeremy Shada) and D'Angelo (Marcus Scribner) stay behind in an attempt to corral the rest of the swarm. Jin also has to deal with Eugene (Vincent Tong) whose suspicions about dragons have been aroused and Buzzsaw (Haley Joel Osment) continuing to snoop around the facility, thankful both continue to be largely inept in their attempts to prove dragons exist.

Movies Where Everybody's Completely Oblivious

Monday, November 21, 2022

Rick and Morty - Full Meta Jackrick

Returning from mid-season hiatus, Rick and Morty goes into meta-overdrive fighting a number of zany characters with puntastic names in the meta realm while also offering the return of Story Lord (Paul Giamatti) from "Never Ricking Morty" who breaks into the real world and attempts to redefine his character with the help of his crappy creator. "Full Meta Jackrick" is batshit crazy, in all the best ways, from the opening (which includes our heroes flying through the opening credits) all the way to the end where the writer fails to learn an important lesson, much to the dismay of Ghost Joseph Campbell. The episode runs with the concept, never slowing down, while providing us with numerous moments and laughs on the way to becoming the best episode of Season Six.

Moon Knight #17

Before his confrontation with the Tutor, Moon Knight must deal with the fallout from last issue's B-story and the murder of Hunter’s Moon at the hands of Grand Mal and Nemean. More of a horror comic than the previous issues, Moon Knight draws the two hired killers into the Midnight Mission to exact some vengeance on them. And after taking his pound of flesh, our hero turns his attention back on the Tutor and his cabal.

The Peripheral - Jackpot

Our story continues to stall in "Jackpot" with the latest episode of The Peripheral jumping around the timeline focusing on various conversations and once again no movement being made in the search for Aelita West (Charlotte Riley). The best of these comes at the very end of the episode where Flynne (Chloë Grace Moretz) discovers what the future has in store for the world. The worst is the verbal sparring between Lev (JJ Feild) and Cherise (T'Nia Miller) which if full of sci-fi gobbledygook the show hasn't gotten around to making sense of yet (and, honestly, I have little interest in).

Friday, November 18, 2022

She Said

Carey Mulligan and Zoe Kazan star as New York Times reporters Megan Twohey and Jodi Kantor on the scent of a story centering around movie producer Harvey Weinstein's sexual and emotional abuse towards women his company, and Hollywood at large, were to willing to ignore and cover up for 25 years.

The low-key approach to many of the reporter's interviews, from knocking on doors to waiting outside houses of those they know have stories to tell, offers the movie a bit of a timeless quality in a reporter's search for the truth. Adapted from Twohey and Kantor's book, the screenplay by Rebecca Lenkiewicz focuses largely on the investigation into Weinstein, while offering us glimpses into the lives of both reporters and how the breadth of what they found shook each of them. The publication of the article would eventually uncover over 100 women who had been harassed, assaulted, or raped by Weinstein.

Thursday, November 17, 2022

Be Careful When You Order Off The Menu

Taking a few good-natured jabs at foodie culture and the cult-like culture inside a chef's kitchen, The Menu offers us a look into an exclusive dining experience in a dark comedy that may not always work as well as intended but is so damn bizarre it's certainly not easily forgettable. Anya Taylor-Joy stars as the last-minute replacement date for molecular gastronomy nerd Tyler (Nicholas Hoult) for a dining experience so exclusive it has its own island.

While Margot (Taylor-Joy) is a bit out of her element, the rest of the clientele fall into broad categories of your expected entitled guests with too much time and money on their hands. Running the kitchen is the obsessive celebrity chef Julian Slowik (Ralph Fiennes) who has planned a memorable menu for this special event which will change the lives of everyone invited.

Wednesday, November 16, 2022

Fantastic Four #1

In somewhat of an odd way to launch a new title, Fantastic Four #1 only gives us one member of the team and sticks him in a time loop for the entire issue. The Thing and Alicia Masters check-in to a hotel in the small town of Cedar where time resets every morning at 4am. Sticking around to try and figure out what the hell is going on in the oversized first issue the plays on several classic themes including Ben scaring the local populace (as the loop started well before the Four made their first appearance).

NCIS: Hawai'i - Vanishing Act

While searching for a boy's missing mother, NCIS discovers she's a fugitive being chased both by a bounty hunter and criminals tied to the crime she was charged with. "Vanishing Act" gives us an episode that highlights both Jesse (Noah Mills), who spends time with the son, and Lucy (Yasmine Al-Bustami), who both works the case and is involved in the B-story involving a possible promotion which would mean leaving Hawai'i. I'm always up for a Lucy-centric story, and the episode delivers (even with the promise of her upcoming abscence). I'd guess the short hiatus will either be ignored (i.e. the show jumps forward after a couple episodes in tune with the mid-season break) or NCIS: Hawai'i will take Lucy's absence to try and build-up other characters.

This is C2E2 Best Cosplay Music Video

Tuesday, November 15, 2022

Deadpool #1

A new volume of Deadpool starts here with a pair of storylines. The first, involving Deadpool being contracted by an illusive assassin guild known as the Atelier to kill Doc Ock, gets pushed into the background pretty quickly (but likely will prove the longer thread for the comic). The second, which takes up most of the issue, involves Deadpool being kidnapped by the Harrower in an attempt to grow a new Carnage inside Deadpool's body whose healing properties provide an unique setting for her experiment.

Stargirl - The Killer

In an episode that gives us Mike (Trae Romano) and Jakeem (Alkoya Brunson) working their way back home to warn of the Ultra-Humanite, attempts to broker peace between the JSA and the Mankents, and (as the title suggests) the reveal of our killer, "The Killer" is most notable for the final appearances of Crusher (Neil Hopkins) and Paula (Stella Smith). Having started their run on the show as low-card villains which slowly became comic-relief neighbors, the Crocks did warn me over and their final appearance gives us them work separately and together as true friends of the heroes and loving parents to the young woman they will leave behind. For Stargirl to make me care about the pair's deaths it a testament to the investment made in both characters.

Vampirella vs. Red Sonja #1

Despite what the title suggests, both Red Sonja and Vampirella play only minor supporting roles in the first issue of the new mini-series. Instead, the focus is on the Project (a collection of Dynamite Entertainment heroes outside time and space brought together to save all known universes against threats). While both Red Sonja and Vampirella were recruited by the group, Sonja continues to serve but Vampirella has been locked up by the heroes.

Monday, November 14, 2022

Abominable and the Invisible City - Jin's New Look

The title of the episode references both the white doctor's coat delivered to Jin's (Tenzing Norgay Trainor) and his new view on life after the end of the episode choosing to stay with a magical creature (whose saliva can turn thing invisible) in need rather than attend a ceremony for his pre-medical program. While there's a nice message there, and Peng (Ethan Loh) finds a moment to stand-up to both Jin and Yi (Chloe Bennet) who both get distracted (Jin by his coat, and later being turned invisbile, and Yi from the creature not appreciating her music), "Jin's New Look" is the weakest episode of the series so far.

  • Title: Abominable and the Invisible City - Jin's New Look
  • IMDb: link

The Ones #1

From the mind of Brian Michael Bendis comes this unusual tale of a group of people being called together by something of a prophet. What makes the group unusual is that each one of them were "the One," a special individual in the time and place of their own culture. Some have aged, some are in the prime, and one is unsure why she was even included in the group. The reason for being brought together is either murder (which doesn't sit too well with these heroes) or saving the world from the apocalypse (depending on your perspective).

Leverage: Redemption - The Debutante Job

Leverage: Redemption returns for a Second Season with an episode that returns Hardison (Aldis Hodge) to the team, offering some friction between the Leverage hackers, and pulling Harry Wilson (Noah Wyle) back into a con involving the corrupt president of a foreign country (Dikran Tulaine) in London to squash a journalist's story about his black market thieving and introduce his reluctant daughter (Iliana Raykovski) into high society.

Thursday, November 10, 2022

Wakanda Forever

More Shakespearean tragedy than super-hero film, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever wears its bruised heart on its sleeve mourning the loss of King T'Challa (Chadwick Boseman). Taking the idea of arrive late, leave early, to extreme, we open with the death of T'Challa (off-camera and from causes never fully explored). After glimpses of his funeral, we advance a full year to look in at the state of his family and his country in the world still mourning their lost hero.

Kung Fu - Harmony

While other aspects of ongoing stories are on display including Henry's (Eddie Liu) return, Jin (Tzi Ma) getting into politics, Ryan's (Jon Prasida) relationship troubles, and Pei-Ling (Vanessa Kai) hiding from the world, the primary focus of "Harmony" centers around the reopening of the restaurant which is targeted by someone with a grudge, leading to several cameos from baddies of previous episodes as Nicky (Olivia Liang), Evan (Gavin Stenhouse), and Althea (Shannon Dang) attempt to narrow down the suspects but the true culprit turns out to be a disgruntled chef (Michelle Mao) denied a job in the restaurant. Despite all the drama, opening night goes off without a hitch.

Wednesday, November 9, 2022

The New Champion of SHAZAM! #3

Mary continues her investigation into the missing people in The New Champion of SHAZAM! #3 only to discover the number of missing is far greater than anyone realizes, but because most of the missing are homeless they aren't garnering the attention they deserve. We also get introduced to Uncle Dudley and a scientist at Mary's college who, giving the foreshadowing and Mary's discovery about medical experiment dates lining up with missing people, certainly suggests the brain behind what is going on.

Only Murders in the Building - Hello, Darkness

The blackout in the city leads to Charles (Steve Martin), Mabel (Selena Gomez), and Oliver (Martin Short) racing back to the building to save Lucy (Zoe Margaret Colletti) from the killer, but it's really the side characters that are given the bulk of the time in "Hello, Darkness" as Howard (Michael Cyril Creighton) makes a new connection, Nina (Christine Ko) spends time with Lester (Teddy Coluca), and the podcast's uber-fan (Daniel Oreskes) gets involved. While mostly featuring characters stumbling around, or singing, in the dark, Mabel does make a discovery concerning the identity of the glitter man after the lights come up leading one step closer to the end of the season.

Tuesday, November 8, 2022

The Peripheral - Haptic Drift

The third episode of the series feels a bit like The Peripheral is treading water without making much headway while refusing to do more than hint and larger ideas and secrets. What "Haptic Drift" does deliver is Burton (Jack Reynor) making an arrangement with Pickett (Louis Herthum), more of T'Nia Miller's character working against our heroine (for reasons still not explained), some information and backstory on more supporting characters I don't have reason to care about yet, and Flynne (Chloë Grace Moretz) returning to the future and finding the secret apartment of her earlier visit but still no sign of the missing Aelita West (Charlotte Riley). "Haptic Drift" continues to be stronger within the sim than in reality, although a mystery that doesn't make any headway could get equally tiresome quickly.

Rosaline

Who did Romeo (Kyle Allen) love before Juliet (Isabela Merced)? That's the question Rosaline answers by casting Kaitlyn Dever in the title role as the Romeo's ex who he unceremoniously dumps after meeting Juliet at a masquerade ball. Adding some modern dialogue and sensibilities, Rosaline has fun with some of the goofier aspects of Shakespeare's play while also blending in some Taming of the Shrew vibes for out titular character.

Stargirl - Chapter Nine: The Monsters

"Chapter Nine" picks up the pieces of the season so far with Courtney (Brec Bassinger) and Pat (Luke Wilson) returning to Blue Valley both still feeling the aftereffects of their experiences in the Shadowlands. For Courtney this means apologizing to her friends and choosing to tell Cameron (Hunter Sansone) the truth about his father and the JSA's involvement in his death which is preempted by an out-of-control Rick (Cameron Gellman) leading to the season's biggest action sequence. For Pat that means beginning the search for Mike's (Trae Romano) mother. Speaking of Mike, he and Jakeem (Alkoya Brunson) continue their search for the missing Cindy (Meg DeLacy) still hoping to recruit her.

Sally (Nightmare Before Christmas) Cosplay by Hendo Art

Hendo Art is a cosplayer from California. You can follow her on Facebook, Instagram, Twitch, Vero, and Twitter. You can also find more lewd content on Instagram and Twitter, and support her on Patreon and OnlyFans.

Monday, November 7, 2022

Abominable and the Invisible City - Peng vs. Peng

While Jin (Tenzing Norgay Trainor) and Peng (Ethan Loh) attempt to help Yi (Chloe Bennet) control the magic she and Everest (Darin De Paul) create together, the trio also need to cover-up the fact that its Everest who has been sneaking into the restaurant and eating the candied treats Nai Nai (Karen Huie) has been working on. Things get even more complicated when Peng accidentally swallows a magical creature and starts acting even crazier than normal, but also allows Yi to have a breakthrough with the magic and save her friend and discover answers to the creatures origins and Nai Nai's problems as well.

Iron Cat #5

The five-issue Iron Cat series comes to a close with the not-at-all-shocking reappearance of Tamara Blake who shows up, still very much alive, just in time to help Black Cat and Iron Man turn the tables on Madame Menace. The finale also sees Tamara and Felicia work through their issues with each other, and both suit up in armor to give Stark time enough to beat his ex.

Professionals - Snipe Hunt / Entanglements

The first two episodes of Professionals give us the pairing of a talented soldier of fortune (Tom Welling) and a good-natured billionaire (Brendan Fraser) who get teamed up through a woman (Elena Anaya) and the destruction of a recent rocket launch. Neither of our two stars is asked to do all that much. Fraser can sleepwalk through playing the goofy nice guy which was his bread-and-butter for decades with a scruffy Welling getting to play the bad ass, but still principled, leader of a band of soldiers.

Friday, November 4, 2022

Weird: The Al Yankovic Story

Having some fun at the expense of the genre, Weird: The Al Yankovic Story offers up an unapologetically goofy and over-the-top biopic of the son of a factory worker turned platinum recording artist (Daniel Radcliffe) who became famous by creating parody versions of popular songs.

While not as witty or entertaining as Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story, Weird does satisfy by playing fast and loose with Yankovic's history including a romantic subplot with Madonna (Evan Rachel Wood) leading Al down a self-destructive path, the sudden and various odd inspiration for many of his hit songs, several notable cameos from Jack Black as Wolfman Jack to Paul F. Tompkins as Gallagher, playing up the lewd overtones of accordions and the insane action sequences of our star taking on drug lord Pablo Escobar (Arturo Castro), and in suggesting Michael Jackson's "Beat It" was a parody of "Eat It."

9 Bullets

Lena Headey stars in this thriller in name only about a retiring stripper who goes on the run with the sole survivor (Dean Scott Vazquez) of her murdered neighbors who were all killed after stealing from her psychotic ex (Sam Worthington) leading to an annoyingly-long road trip with an equally annoying kid. Things aren't improved when they pick up La La Anthony as a traveling companion running from her own problems.

9 Bullets is your basic throwaway movie featuring familiar faces you've seen in better films going through the motions. The script from writer/director Gigi Gaston offers a couple of nice individual acting moments for Heady but nothing in the script provides us much of a reason to care about the characters, their story, or the results of a bloody final shootout (and sappy tacked-on epilogue) which mercifully draws events to a close.