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Paramount

Blockbuster Beat by Matt Lynch Film

Annihilation | Alex Garland

Annihilation practically sits up and begs to be regarded as high-minded genre cinema. But really, it’s a thuddingly literal handful of barely engaged ideas and dangling plot threads standing in for conceptual and narrative ambiguity. Extremely loosely based on a novel by Jeff VanderMeer, writer/director Alex…

February 22, 2018
Blockbuster Beat by Matt Lynch Film

mother! | Darren Aronofsky

It’s difficult to argue that Darren Aronofsky’s films are poorly executed, at least on a formal level; his largely allegorical works are often manic, intense, portentous, and meticulously designed, it’s just that they’re also so sophomorically pleased with themselves, rarely approaching their allegories from a perspective…

September 15, 2017
Blockbuster Beat by Matt Lynch Film

Jack Reacher: Never Go Back | Edward Zwick

2012’s Jack Reacher was, at its best, an amusingly bare-bones action movie with a level of simplicity that may have felt a bit like a gritty ’70s throwback to some, but that more realistically resembled a made-for-cable movie circa the early ’90s. Never Go Back doubles…

October 21, 2016
Blockbuster Beat by Matt Lynch Film

10 Cloverfield Lane | Dan Trachtenberg

When Michelle (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) wakes up chained to the wall in an underground doomsday bunker after a car accident, she finds herself the captive of obvious lunatic Howard (John Goodman), a conspiracy nut who, along with his other “guest,” Emmett (John Gallagher Jr.) tries…

March 11, 2016
Blockbuster Beat by Matt Lynch Film

13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi | Michael Bay

Despite admonitions in the press materials and interviews with the principals, Michael Bay’s (maybe appropriately) dreaded Benghazi movie can’t possibly read as completely apolitical. Non-partisan, sure, fine: President Obama’s voice is only heard briefly, Secretary Clinton isn’t even mentioned. But no American film about…

January 15, 2016
Blockbuster Beat by Matt Lynch Film

The Big Short | Adam McKay

News to absolutely nobody: in 2008 a mounting, toxic combination of sheer cluelessness and outright lawbreaking caused the US housing market to collapse, leading to a massive taxpayer-funded government bailout of several enormous financial institutions. In the wake of this, very little new legislation…

December 17, 2015
Blockbuster Beat by Matt Lynch Film

Terminator Genisys | Alan Taylor

Terminator Genisys (don’t ask about the spelling) is, by most counts, the third attempt to kickstart a new trilogy of movies in this franchise. Let’s hope it’s the last. The fifth film in this series (which is seemingly as unkillable as its eponymous cyborg) begins…

July 1, 2015
by Veronika Ferdman Film

The Gambler | Rupert Wyatt

If you haven’t seen Karel Reisz’s 1974 The Gambler before seeing Rupert Wyatt’s new Mark Wahlberg-starring remake, don’t watch it in close proximity to the new version. Here is yet another classic case of an original that makes the flaws of the remake seem…

December 23, 2014
by Matt Lynch Film

Interstellar | Christopher Nolan

The self-consciously “epic” epic Interstellar is wildly ambitious, massive in scope, gorgeous to look at, often clumsily sentimental, very serious, and frequently overly expository. In other words, it’s the usual from director Christopher Nolan. The film follows Cooper (Matthew McConaughey), a one-time pilot, now farmer, living…

November 5, 2014
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