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Warner Bros.

#BlockbusterBeat by Matt Lynch Film

Birds of Prey | Cathy Yan

February 6, 2020

Ostensibly a spinoff from 2016’s Suicide Squad, Birds of Prey wisely abandons most of that film’s macho swagger — and, much more pointedly, its iteration of the Joker character — in favor of some easily digestible pop feminism in the form of a softened version of Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn. Having extricated herself from the clutches of the Clown Prince of Crime (or just Puddin’, as she calls him), Harley is ready to strike out on her own as a…

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#KickingtheCanon by Selina Lee Film

Badlands | Terrence Malick

Over a decade before the Coen Brothers released their neo-noir, blood-soaked vision of Americana, Blood Simple, Terrence Malick’s Badlands etched into the public consciousness a particularly languid flavor of Midwestern cruelty. Loosely based on the true story of Charles Starkweather and Caril Ann Fugate’s…

January 23, 2020
#BlockbusterBeat by Daniel Gorman Film

Motherless Brooklyn | Edward Norton

Edward Norton’s Motherless Brooklyn, based on Jonathan Lethem’s novel, is by Norton’s own admission a passion project some 20 years in the making. It’s easy to see what would attract Norton to the role of Lionel Essrog, a sorta-kinda private detective investigating his boss and…

November 18, 2019
#BlockbusterBeat by Matt Lynch Film

Doctor Sleep | Mike Flanagan

In the realm of unnecessary sequels, Stephen King’s follow-up novel to his beloved The Shining would seem to be running neck and neck for first place along with the movie adaptation of same. But Doctor Sleep comes for us all anyway, and believe it or…

November 7, 2019
#BlockbusterBeat by Matt Lynch Film

Joker | Todd Phillips

Stick with me here: what if someone made a superhero movie, but, and I’m just spitballing, they took out all the superhero stuff so it was just, like, a regular movie? A real movie. That’s the ostensibly revelatory tack Hangover auteur Todd Phillips has taken…

October 3, 2019
#BlockbusterBeat by Matt Lynch Film

It Chapter Two | Andy Muschietti

Dividing Stephen King’s sprawling novel of repressed childhood trauma and inter-dimensional evil clowns into two parts not only made it easier to streamline It’s narrative, it also gave the studio an excuse to sell two movies. The first installment benefited greatly from excellent casting…

September 5, 2019
#BlockbusterBeat by Matt Lynch Film

Shazam! | David F. Sandberg

Perhaps setting itself up as a corrective to the rest of the DC comics films, which are apparently perceived to be overly dark and serious, Shazam! [sic] is more kid-friendly fare, what with its host of adolescent characters, its good-natured it’s-about-family moralizing, and its relatively…

April 5, 2019
#KickingtheCanon by Greg Cwik Film

Eyes Wide Shut | Stanley Kubrick

Stanley Kubrick’s final film is one of the least-sexy films ever made about sex. Libidinous, yes, and full of naked bodies in salacious motion, engaging in lubricious acts — but also off-putting, too meticulous to be arousing. Eyes Wide Shut is a dreamy traipse…

March 15, 2019
#KickingtheCanon by M.G. Mailloux Film

A Perfect World | Clint Eastwood

A Perfect World‘s title is contradictory, born from a phrase that implies that life will never really amount to what we want it to — but abbreviated, so as to suggest that the central relationship in Clint Eastwood’s film is a utopian alternative to the…

March 3, 2019
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