THE NEW MUTANTS (2020)

Directed By: Josh Boone
Written By: Josh Boone & Knate Lee
Cinematography: Peter Deming 
Editor: Andrew Buckland, Robb Sullivan & Matthew Rundell 

Cast: Blu Hunt, Alice Braga, Anya Taylor-Joy, Maisie Williams, Charlie Heaton, Henry Zaga, Adam Beach 

Five young mutants, just discovering their abilities while held in a secret facility against their will, fight to escape their past sins and save themselves.


Had high hopes for this film when it was originally supposed to be released. As in the advertisements, it seemed to offer something different when it came to a superhero film. One that was more of a horror film.

While the film resembles one. It doesn’t scare or fascinate. In fact, it feels more like a video game for the number of CGI effects used and more aimed at teenagers for how clean it comes off being.

Especially as it plays more like a haunted house film That just happens to involve a laboratory.

One can understand with all the supposed reshooting and re-edits that delayed the film. Which is supposed to sharpen the movie or at least make it better, but it seems to have sucked all the originality out of it.

The actors also use a variety of f accents that don’t seem to always stick. There is one. Performance that is so bad it’s never believable and amazed it stayed in and in so many scenes. As it comes off more cartoonish than probably intended.

The movie also comes off a lot simpler than it should.

The film had certain darkness that hangs over it that would work in a horror film or if it truly meant something but as the film plays like a dramatic thriller. It feels more artificial. So that the angst that the film tries to display feels more scripted than natural.

All of this is a shame as this was also one of my favored comic book series when I used to collect comic books as a teen. This movie doesn’t come close to it in any way, shape, or form. In fact, it feels more random than anything else 

Some of the disappointment might be that the film feels a bit unfinished; it offers a nice short story, but holds the ideas for something bigger and more. That could have been a different kind of superhero movie. Though it feels like any development for something original was stopped in its tracks or just cut out. As it feels constantly on the edge of something then stops way short. Which just leaves a major disappointment. 

Grade: C-

THE CRAFT: LEGACY (2020)

Written & Directed By: Zoe Lister Jones 
Based On Characters created by: Peter Filardi 
Cinematography: Hillary Spera
Editor: Libby Cuenin 

Cast: Cailee Spaeny, Gideon Adlon, Lovie Simone, Zoey Luna, David Duchovny, Michelle Monaghan, Nicholas Galitzine, Julian Gray, Hannah Gordon 

An update to the original movie. A group of high school students form a coven of witches.


The surprise about this film is that it’s not as bad as I thought it would be. Though it still did end up being the film that was predicted after watching the trailer.

The film works as a sequel/reboot of the franchise. Even though the characters here are younger than the first film’s original set. The characters are so young that this film feels perfect for its audience of preteen and teenage girls.

The film is never as hard-hitting as the original. This is why in a certain way it feels more like a prequel except for modernizing it and setting up a link to the first film.

This film is more sensitive than the robins land deals more with different issues that are mentioned debut barely dealt with except for the central character. She is being bullied and dealing with a relationship with her new all ape stepfamily abs feeling like she is losing the close relationship with her mother.

Though the film does express the idea of the coven depending on ie. Another and being in tune. Rather than in the original separating and pitting them against each other. This film offers a villain but one who really only becomes a menace at the end. So that it feels like a Scooby-doo type ending.

The film also never quite answers the questions: do the other girls who have been studying magic really have powers or are they only empowered as the lead already has the capacity to do magic unintentionally.

The film does have magic but doesn’t rely on it as much as the original. This plays out more as a coming-of-age drama about female friendship and in a way feminism by the end. Rather than horror or supernatural film.

Even when the coven questions her power, the members trying to make a decision whether to bind them or not is not out of jealousy or a power move. nor because they are being bad and she is shaming them for it. It is after what they believe a careless spell caused and are trying to decide out of responsibility more than anything else.

Again I am definitely not the target audience for this film, but am a huge fan of the original. Luckily This film doesn’t embarrass itself, but it does have a much lighter touch. That could have easily been an episode of ARE YOU AFRAID OF THE DARK or HULU’S INTO THE DARK series. Only it is not as cynical, cruel, or violent as those shows. 

So this is a perfect film for young teens. Who wants to watch a film that feels a little more mature and deals with issues that are a little more serious and prevalent in their lives. With a positive message by the end.

Grade: C

WEIRD SCIENCE (1985)

Written & Directed by: John Hughes 
Cinematography: Matthew F. leonetti
Editor: Chris Lebenzon, Scott Wallace & Mark Warner 

Cast: Anthony Michael Hall, Ilan Mitchell-Smith, Kelly Lebrock, Bill Paxton, Robert Downey Jr. Robert Rusler, Suzanne Snyder, Judie Aronson, Vernon wells, Michael Berryman, Britt Leach, Wallace Langham

Two high school nerds use a computer program to literally create the perfect woman, but she turns their lives upside down.


This film is a nostalgic favorite for me. That still fills me with joy as I watch it. Even if as I get older I realize how thin the premise is. 

I would have to say out of the John Hughes canon this film seems to be his lightest weighted film. As this film just seems more of an escape for him and maybe his audience a film that you could just enjoy and not put any great thought into.

Though just as any coming of age tale. This one still has a lesson to teach about confidence and being yourself. Even if it takes wishes from a beautiful woman as a genie to do it.

This film is total wish fulfillment for teenage boys. As the heroes get all they ever wanted really. They work to a degree to get it but in the most fanciful way. So this film doesn’t come close to any of the realities of Hughes’s previous teen films. As it is more science fiction influenced. As part of the fantasy 

One thing that stays constant is the humor. The scenes feel like little skits of their own under the banner of a plot. With teen fantasies thrown in. In a movie where the plot could easily be made into a porn parody  

Early groundbreaking performance from bill Paxton as the older brother from hell. Though shows how distinguished a career he has had and as many iconic films and characters he has played. That this his debut is the most remembered and strongest.

The lust and desire the characters and audience has for Kelly lebrock are what also help the film. As the friendly yet ultimately unattainable object and character of desire. 

 Amazingly the film has nudity but not from her she stays clothed though scantily clad in only a few scenes. As their genie of sorts. Though then again as a fantasy. It makes her more desirable if she stays a mystery.

 It’s a shame she never really followed up with a film or role quite as memorable. Which for that generation and generations after who are fans of this fits her defining role. I am Sure also an early model for quite a few a dream girl. 

This film seems written for Anthony Michael hall as most of the film allows for his comedic facial expressions, double tales, and comedic bits. Especially in his scenes where he plays drunken. where he seems to be attempting his own version of the classic Richard Pryor Mudbone character.

This showcases that some of the film’s humor is racy by today’s standards and would be viewed as non-politically correct in quite a few scenes.

Mostly Due to language and what seems like a hallmark of John Hughes films of inclusion of minorities by having a scene where the character goes to the more urban side of town. That seems stereotypical but not as insulting as it could be. Except for a scene in National Lampoon’s Vacation, Which as a minor defense was only written by him. 

Learned the difference between a nerd and a dork. The Dork fast-talking thinks he is smoother and cooler than he actually is, Nerd is just smart and has trouble following social cues and finds interest in things that aren’t popular and more interested in science and other things to an obsessive degree. Where he feels he must dismantle it to understand it or at least examine to learn all they can. 

At the time I Looked up to Anthony Michael hall he was in all my favorite movies at the time. (Usually John Hughes ones) not to mention was more a movie star who was near my age. 

It seems like this film is almost like Anthony Michael hall’s audition for Saturday night love along with Robert Downey jr. Who were both cast members for one season. As he is given more to do comedically over the top here.

This film was one of my favorites from the 1980’s teen genre. As it was all more Commercial. As it has some themes of teenage life but is far less emotional and leans more towards fantasy 

At the time I was envious and Jealous of the fashion and cars in the film. It made me want to have them in the ’80s and looked forward to when I got older owning them. Especially a Ferrari. Still have a fascination with those cars. 

This film is a total of 80’s fantasy wish fulfillment. That works Escapist entertainment. It’s definitely Dated 

The story is Frankenstein mixed with a teen fantasy or more like a bride of Frankenstein. Almost like a long-form music video brought to life.

Bill Paxton co-stars in one of his breakout Roles and is truly a comedic highlight.

It has a moralistic lesson of bee icing in yourself as you had what you needed in you all along. As well as getting everything they want in the end.

Reminds you of the excess of the 1980s But still really enjoyable. One of my favorite films of the day watching it now see it’s a weakness but is more harmed by them in my deep-seated nostalgia.

Grade: B-  

THE IMAGINARIUM OF DOCTOR PARNASSUS (2009)

Directed By: Terry Gilliam 
Written By: Terry Gilliam & Charles McKeon 
Cinematography By: Nicole Pecorini 
Editor: Mick Audsley 
 

Cast: Christopher Plummer, Heath Ledger, Lilly Cole, Andrew Garfield, Verne Troyer, Tom Waits, Johnny Depp, Jude Law, Colin Farell

In London, the sideshow troupe of Doctor Parnassus promises the audience a journey to the “Imaginarium”, an imaginary world commanded by the mind of Doctor Parnassus, where dreams come true. In the stories that Doctor Parnassus tells to his daughter Valentina, the midget Percy, and his assistant Anton, he claims to have lived for more than one thousand years; However, when he fell in love with a mortal woman, he made a deal with the devil (Mr. Nick), trading his immortality for youth. As part of the bargain, he promised his son or daughter to Mr. Nick on their sixteenth birthday. Valentina is now almost to the doomed age and Doctor Parnassus makes a new bet with Mr. Nick, whoever seduces five souls in the Imaginarium will have Valentina as a prize. Meanwhile the troupe rescues Tony, a young man that was hanged on a bridge by the Russians. Tony was chased until he finds and joins the group. Tony and Valentina fall in love with each other and the jealous Anton discovers that his competition may be a liar.


The thing when it comes to Terry Gilliam’s films is that his films are so far off the beaten path that it takes a while to get used to while watching his films. But once you get used to his world and get onto the rhythm of his films you are usually in for a treat. The man’s imagination is so vivid that you are guaranteed to see things you have never seen before.

This film I wanted to love but ended up liking the ingredients were there Gilliam writing with Charles McKeon who he co-wrote THE ADVENTURES OF BARON MUNCHAUSEN with. They create a vivid original world and characters but in many ways, it feels like it falls short. 

The story is Doctor Parnisuss made a deal with the devil that for immortality and the hand of the woman he loved the devil could have his daughter when she turned 18. They have an ongoing game. That involves a magical mirror. A mirror where people go into a fantasy world and can choose either light or the darkness if they go to the darkness the devil gets their soul if they go into the light they are given a euphoric joy that gives them delight and their fantasy come to life. He tries to find a way out of it but when the devil comes to collect he makes another deal the first who can get 5 souls wins. This would be a tragedy if not for saving Tony a mysterious rogue they find hanging off a bridge they save his life and tony repays them by coming up with a way to save their business which is a traveling circus, Side show with the magical mirror.  

This is Heath Ledger’s last film. He, unfortunately, died before the film was finished and his role is played in different scenes by Colin Farell, Johnny Depp, and Jude law which in its own way works as they all play fantasy versions of his character and it feels seamless. 
One always felt Heath ledger had the talent for bigger and better things and luckily he never had mainstream tastes when it came to roles he was always attracted to the more abstract roles which I felt would lead him to be the next Johnny Depp as early in his career he also was more in artistic films then later in his career finally choose more mainstream roles.  

The casting of this film is good Verne Troyer plays a good role not as comedic as usual. Christopher Plummer is a hoot as Doctor Parnisuss he is clearly having fun. Tom Waits as the devil is always a joy to watch with his original looks and charisma. 

While one might prefer old school special effects and would like them to be used more, but though this film has tons of CGI it works for the story as it enhances the film and is useful more than anything else to help tell the tale in vivid detail. 
 

Now while I liked the film I never became invested in the film and felt like I was always kept at a distance from the characters and story. But I must give Gilliam credit as to how good the film is considering the tragedy that happened halfway through filming. 

One only wishes he could get the budgets and more luck when it comes to the making of his films it seems he always has to struggle to get his dream projects made then has to compromise or settle on films that while they have his creative genius. They just aren’t the films he should be making. They seem a little too streamlined and commercial for his artistic tastes. 


He is one of the last auteurs we have. He is a director who in the ’70s would have had people lining up around the corner to see his latest works because they would be guaranteed to see something original. Now he has a hard time Making films because his material is too original. 

The film has its own beauty and is interesting to watch, unfortunately it doesn’t last on the mind s much as past works of his have.  A Satisfying Rental  
GRADE: B-

SHADOW IN THE CLOUD (2021)

Directed By: Roseanne Liang
Written By: Max Landis & Roseanne Liang 
Cinematography: Kit Fraser
Editor: Tom Eagles 

Cast: Chloe Grace Moretz, Nick Robinson, Beulah Koale, Taylor John Smith, Callum Mulvey, Benedict Wall

On a stormy night during World War II, a female pilot with top-secret cargo talks her way on board a bomber plane about to take-off. The crass all-male crew reluctantly agrees, but their suspicions about her identity and the mysterious cargo quickly grow. Just then a shadow appears in the clouds – was it the incoming Japanese fleet? Or caused by some other sinister stowaway?


This film had a very notorious beginning as one of disgraced Screenwriter Max Landis’s big-budget scripts being turned into a production. 

Though after much rewriting supposedly the film was eventually made. Though one wonders if the script was so pro-female before it was rewritten or maybe if he did write it that way as a kind of public apology against the charges he has been accused of. 

It also might also be an homage to the TWILIGHT ZONE movie which his father was infamously sort of even though he didn’t direct that segment of the film and also kind of a remake of the AMAZING STORIES episode THE MISSION directed by Steven Spielberg.

Either way, the film takes the premise of the classic Twilight zone episode terror at 20,000 feet and changes the situation to that of a fighter plane running a mission with an extra female passenger In the gunner galley who sees the gremlin at first. While the others think she has gone crazy, but also during this, they are being attacked by enemy planes and she is trying to keep a top-secret cargo mission from others.

So the film Is loaded and at first, it seems like this going to be a claustrophobic thriller mainly taking place with her in the gunner pit but then eventually it opens up to the whole plane. So that while it is still contained there is more to work with. 

The film stays entertaining though some of the twists are totally unbelievable and reminds you how much a production this is. Which also helps you to accept the more far fetched elements.

Especially one action Sequence where Chloe Grace Moretz is hanging out of the plane trying to retrieve her package and fight off the gremlin. This then adds the intrigue of a fighter place attacking At the same time and an explosion that has to be seen to be believed. As it is an impressive action sequence but totally laughable thinking about the physics of it and how it is played. 

The film offers a little bit of everything there is intrigue, action, war sequences, thriller a little bit of drama, and even a showcase of sexism from most of the males involved in this mission with her and how in the end she more than proves herself capable and above them. Being the bravest, strongest and most resourceful.

In the end, though they help at times as resources this is really Moretz’s action film to take hold of. As she is the hero and they are more the damsels in distress who help out a little.

It isn’t as pumped up as a similar world war II film OVERLORD but It’s a fun action film that uses history and injects something supernatural. So that they have to deal with these otherworldly elements with whatever resources they have that aren’t that advanced.

If anything this movie is an entertaining b-movie and a perfectly fun time waster. 

Grade: C

QUEEN OF THE DAMNED (2002)

Directed By: Michael Rymer
Written By: Scott Abbott & Michael Petroni
Based on the Novels “THE VAMPIRE CHRONICLES” Written By: Anne Rice Cinematography: Ian Baker
Editor: Dany Cooper

Cast: Aaliyah, Stuart Townsend, Marguerite Moureau, Vincent Perez, Lena Olin, Paul McCann, Claudia Black, Bruce Spence, Matthew Newton, Christian Norton 

In this loose sequel to Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles (1994), the vampire Lestat becomes a rock star whose music wakes up the equally beautiful and monstrous queen of all vampires.


While the film is lackluster in certain aspects it does provide a sequel to INTERVIEW WITH THE VAMPIRE and is a continuation of the vampire chronicles In The series of books by Anne Rice 

Though the fanfare for this film Seems to be In The legacy of singer and actress Aaliyah who plays the title role and who does before the film could be completed. As this was a great star-making role for her and at the time one of the few modern horror films. To have an African American in a prominent role. So that also helped bring more people of color to be fans of the film. As it at least had representation even if she is the villain in the end 

Narrative wise it is interesting that one of the scariest characters in the previous tale INTERVIEW WITH THE VAMPIRE was now the protagonist and more on the run from a more powerful vampire. Even as he has brought about her comeback. Due In part by his arrogance of becoming. A rock star despite vampires usually staying out of the limelight due to being immortal. 

The music isn’t very good and the film comes off as low budget trying to seem bigger and Stuart Townsend in the lead isn’t as charismatic as Tom Cruise who played the role first. He doesn’t even approach flamboyance. Though he does appear scared of the all too powerful vampire played by Aaliyah.

The way they incorporate her into the film is creative considering she wasn’t quite done filming all of her scenes. Though whenever her character seems to move the movements all seem to have a voice of chant. Which comes off as enchanting and freaky.

One of the few aspects that does work here is that it delves more into the history of the vampires and sets up a kind of mythology for them. 

The film is somewhat entertaining though ultimately a failure. Especially as at parts it tries to form a romance between Lestat and a human. That feels forced in this type of film. Especially when there is a mroe important matter at hand. 

In the end, even though the quality of the film feels like mroe a straight to video film for the times. The tragedy that happened catapulted the film into theaters and stands as a kind of living embodiment and dedication to the memory of queen Aaliyah.

Grade: D+

FANTASY ISLAND (2020)

Directed By: Jeff Wadlow
Written By Jeff Wadlow, Chris Roach & Jillian Jacobs 
Based on the television series “FANTASY ISLAND” Created By: Gene Levitt  Cinematography: Toby Oliver 
Editor: Sean Albertson

Cast: Michael Pena, Maggie Q, Lucy Hale, Portia Doubleday, Jimmy O. Yang, Ryan Hansen, Mike Vogel, Austin Stowell, Kim Coates, Michael Rooker, Robbie Jones, Parisa Fitz-Hanley, Ian Roberts

The enigmatic Mr. Roarke makes the secret dreams of his lucky guests come true at a luxurious but remote tropical resort. But when the fantasies turn into nightmares, the guests have to solve the island’s mystery in order to escape with their lives.


don’t know exactly who the audience for this film is supposed to be. Though whoever it is I am sure wasn’t envisioning a horror film.

The film sticks to the horns of fantasy island whereas the guests get to live out their fantasies only with some kind of twists involved that they didn’t foresee. 

The film is rather simplistic but thinks It’s clever by having a big reveal. Only to take away any credit it might have built up which was little, to begin with. As it feels generic. 

This might have been noteworthy if made in an earlier era. Which it feels like it comes from more than the 1990s. Though now instead of high concept it feels like a horror script thrown into a familiar tv show, for recognition and comes off as disposable and barely noteworthy.

It’s a shame because the film has a good cast. At least it gives actors who are usually relegated to supporting roles some room to shine even if the film is an ensemble. 

Should have been suspicious when seeing Michael Pena in the lead as he is a good actor, but always seems tied to these disappointing cinematic reboots of more niche television shows, that you would never imagine becoming films. 

Though the premises of fantasies seem kind of simple and then once the twists come. They seem to come from shows and movies we have seen before. Especially the revenge fantasy involving the bully from childhood. Where all of a sudden a monstrous huge surgeon becomes a slasher. 

I can understand if it was just trying to be the greatest common denominator entertainment but here other than the lush visuals of the landscapes. The film just feels like it is going through the motions where once everything. Seems tied together still feels like a waste of time. 

As even the fantasies come across as cheap. For a film based on the supposed imaginations of its characters. The film seems to have no imagination of its own

In the end, it feels like a cash In Done quickly and doesn’t even Impress with its gold visuals or fantasies 

Grade: F

GODZILLA: KING OF MONSTERS (2019)

Directed By: Michael Dougherty
Written By: Michael Dougherty & Zach Shields
Story By: Michael Dougherty, Zach Shields & Max Borenstein
Cinematography: Lawrence Sher
Editor: Roger Barton, Bob Duscay & Richard Pearson

Cast: Kyle Chandler, Vera Farmiga, Millie Bobby Brown, Charles Dance, Ken Wantanabe, Ziyi Zhang, Bradley Whitford, Sally Hawkins, Aisha Hinds, Thomas Middleditch, O’Shea Jackson Jr., David Straitharn, CCH Pounder, Joe Morton, Anthony Ramos

The crypto-zoological agency Monarch faces off against a battery of god-sized monsters, including the mighty Godzilla, who collides with Mothra, Rodan, and his ultimate nemesis, the three-headed King Ghidorah.


The trailer made it look like a different type of film. Where it seemed like he formed a bond with Millie Bobby Brown’s character.

Now while this movie is cliche-ridden. It seems to have the mentality of if it ain’t broke why fix it and makes everything feel familiar. Especially since the film and title character is already well known. 

I can admit to not necessarily being a big fan of these films and have only seen a handful of them. Though I have seen the recent franchise of films. Plus it doesn’t help when also having seen the clones of this film. 

What is of interest is the casts of these films. Which are recognizable to get audiences interested or at least not make them so disposable and asks you to care about their peril more without having to write too much personal material for them. Here we get an international cast to interest and sell to foreign markets. 

The cast is here more for the human interest element and explains the mysterious monster nature that is like the animal kingdom. Which by now we watch and study, but sometimes as they are violent and excuse them. As it is in their nature. The same here with the monsters live amongst us and cause damage but when left alone. Just do what comes naturally.

With the grand casts, it feels like the modern equivalent of disaster movies from the 1969’s and ’70s. Where there is plenty of destruction to property. Mass deaths where you wonder who will live or die amongst the stars. While rooting for certain people to perish not because of the character they play.

The film feels like a battle ROYALE of matches for Godzilla to face off against. The greatest hits of enemies. Even though there is the main opponent. This again makes this feel like a wrestling card and how when you watch it. It feels like life and death only here the fate of the world hangs in the balance. Whereas in wrestling it’s the fate of the league wrestling world. This movie also allows them to set up sequels for other enemies for him to face.

Just as in wrestling she takes a major beating at first then comes through or at least goes full Hulk Hogan and adding the drama that is needed. There is even tag-teaming. As essentially this is a movie about a dinosaur fighting lizards and an alien.

The warm up fights seem to be a case of sending minions to weaken him. After the first battle. Where you know it can’t be over. As there are some after fight getting licks in to start a rivalry.

The film isn’t as visually interesting or stylish as the previous GODZILLA film. Though this one seems to have a love of blue filters. 

Again this is a better film to experience or watch on a big screen. As even for a popcorn movie this wants you to have more experience or interact with it. This is a film to have more fun with as it doesn’t move as fast and takes its time with the story but offers more of a science fiction element.

The film tries to be smart even with it’s more special effects, action-oriented scenes, and material. It’s a bit long and definitely bloated but stays entertaining 

As we wait for the build-up until the finale showdown, really the main event. Luckily the film never feels boring or bogged down even with a lot of exposition. Though luckily not THE MATRIX sequel’s level of exposition.

Will admit it feels strange like. G.I. JOE movie with this being Cobra’s newest plan and a joe’s family somehow involved and by the end must use their own monster Godzilla to battle the evil monsters that cobra has unleashed. 

Each new monster feels like a new toy or action figure and each presentation/Birth/Opening is an introduction of their nature and powers As well as strengths. They also provide mini practice bouts as Godzilla is like a gunslinger who shows up for fights and to save humans these monsters are the heels and he is a fan favorite trying to stop their reign or just trying to stop similar to his kind trespassing on his property and domain. So essentially like the animal kingdom marking his property. 

The monsters he faces seem like Pokémon. Collectible and have to Catch them all

Though Vera Farmiga’s character theory and plan don’t sound so crazy. Even if more a product of Stockholm syndrome to a degree. Just the means to go about it. Sort of like in AVENGERS: END GAME. Where it just seems a bit harsh. 

Her theory is right but the follow-through seems to become like a tournament for the title, with all the dramatic entrances. You have a doctor mind reader mad scientist type who is bent on a plan of world domination or would change the natural order of things. 

Many films have done less to affect the audience so you can appreciate the attentiveness and concern 

This is Kyle chandler’s second giant monster film. Interesting the sequel is GODZILLA Vs. KING KONG. He was in a remake of the later’s film. 

Grade: B-

BILL & TED’S BOGUS JOURNEY (1991)

Directed By: Peter Hewitt
Written By: Chris Matheson & Ed Soloman
Cinematography By: Oliver Wood
Editor: David Finfer

Cast: Keanu Reeves, Alex Winter, William Sadler, George Carlin, Joss Ackland, Pam Grier, Hal Landon Jr., Sarah Trigger, Jim Martin, Taj Mahal, Primus 

The world of our distant future is a veritable utopia, thanks to the lyrics of two simple-minded 20th Century rock and rollers, Bill S. Preston, Esq. and Ted “Theodore” Logan. However, a would-be conquerer threatens to throw history off-track by sending “most non-non-heinous” evil robot Bill and Teds back to kill their good counterparts. Finding themselves dead, the boys must outwit the Grim Reaper and traverse Heaven and Hell to return to the land of the living, rescue their “babes” and have a “most triumphant” concert at the all-important Battle of the Bands


The original title was “Bill and Ted go to Hell” but was changed because of American objections to the use of the word “hell”.

Stephen Herek declined to return as director because he thought it was “almost a parody of a movie that was already a parody”.

This is a sequel not too many people saw coming as yes the first film was a hit, but this sequel while seeming a bit more forced. This seems to revel in the off the Wall motif of everything involved and seems giddy with the chances they have in where they can take the film. As this film is much more wild and experimental and bigger budgeted.

When it comes to this film while there is much more to love and it is more accomplished. I prefer the original for it’s newness factor. Here we are used to these characters and while the film offers a noticeably different story. It still doesn’t feel quite as fresh as the original. Though this one is stranger. It’s not a bad film just different In its own way

definitely can say that this film seems to benefit from a better budget. As the art direction is a lot more sharp and pleasing to the eye. Making the film seem more surreal overall. As the visuals stay with you.

While this film is futuristic it is also definitely a film of its time. Which is where the film’s weakness lies. This is a film where you can tell everyone had a lot of fun making. As all the actors are inspired even the leads seem more gung ho in their roles as maybe they understand the characters more.

As the leads get to play multiple versions of themselves and seem to have their characters more on a directional path. Whereas in the first film they were teenagers who got a glimpse of the future. They still had the time and plenty of room until then. Here we see them trying to get there and the otherworldly obstacles in their way.

This film has less of a necessary story than the first film which just seemed like an odd quirky high concept comedy. Here the film seems more inspired by the characters than the plot. As this film Plays more like a comedic nightmare for the characters. Though you can’t debt that the film is more vibrant if slightly more off-center. As the film beers more into star Alex winter’s early short films and show on MTV, IDIOT BOX. As well as his feature film directorial debut FREAKED, in it’s strange and surreal humor. Where scenes seem partially like sketches that tie into the overall story. Especially in the hell sequences 

William Sadler as death (his death character seemingly more inspired by Max Von Sydow in THE SEVENTH SEAL) steals the film with so much gusto and comedic highlights. That it is another performance that should have made him more in demand and lead to either more lead by roles or character actor roles. At least more comedic ones.

In this film, there is very little time travel. This is a relief as it leaves the film Not relying upon or rehashing the first film’s main focus. Making this sequel seeming fresher.

This film though does feel more creative. As it takes more chances and seems a lot more fun. It’s like a funhouse version of the first film. Whereas this film shows it’s inspirations and seems more aimed at off the wall humor. Focused on its core younger audience. This film also introduced an actual villain for the two characters to face. Even though Joss Ackland claims he only too the role because he lost a bet.

These films always feel like a precursor or an inspiration to the WAYNE’S WORLD skit and movies. Which just like this film had a more surreal and overstuffed sequel. as well as BEAVIS & BUTTHEAD was only more likable.

The film has an ending song that at the time felt iconic but listening to it now feels more melodramatic and embarrassing from the band KISS.

Grade: B-

HELLBOY (2019)

Directed By: Neil Marshall
Written by: Andrew Cosby 
Based on the dark horse comic book “HELLBOY” created by: Mike Mignola
Cinematography: Lorenzo Senatore
Editor: Martin Bernfield

Cast: David Harbour, Sasha Lane, Milla Jovovich, Daniel Dae Kim, Ian McShane, Sophie Okonedo, Kristina Klebe, Thomas Haden Church

Based on the graphic novels by Mike Mignola, Hellboy, caught between the worlds of the supernatural and human, battles an ancient sorceress bent on revenge.


This feels like a dumbed-down version of the story. Though might be more In tune with the original comics.

I am not a fan of the first original HELLBOY movie but can say it was more artistic and beautiful then this film. Even if at the time it played as typical as far as the story went. HELLBOY 2: THE GOLDEN ARMY was better nearly a masterpiece in my eyes.

I at least respected it as it felt lacking a strong villain and instead offered an introduction of characters. 

One of the nice things I can say about this film Is at least it’s Violent and it feels more epic than the original that might end because it actually has more Locations then the original. It also jams in so many creatures that it feels stuffed and cross-referenced many times. Though at least while the Guillermo Del toro version of the first film was more mystical and beautiful even if it lacked a compelling story. This one is more Action oriented and full of story and mythology.

Like many would have preferred a sequel with the original filmmakers but the studio decided to try to modernize it instead and reboot it. Unfortunately with the departure of Ron Perlman in the title role and the director/writer Guillermo Del Toro this comes Off as a desperate copy that is never sharp.

Ron Perlman’s portrayal of the title character felt more lived-in and impressive. David Harbour’s performance seems more laid back.

The reason I eventually watched this was to see Sasha Lane’s interpretation of Alice. She adds to the culture and atmosphere of the film

The film definitely feels otherworldly and is best to watch on a big screen.

This film makes you appreciate the original and it’s more practical special effects. As this is CGI overload that does feel more like a comic book. Though without the texture and depth. So that this comes off more commercial.

Director Neil Marshall supposedly had a hard time making the film and the producers took it over after his initial cut. You can tell as the story gets short-sighted for more Action and effects. Leading to it at times being hard to follow or distracted itself.

The film has a strong mystical fantasy story with a bunch of exposition. That makes it feel overstuffed and too long with stretches of little to no excitement.

The performances throughout are spotty. Considering all the people involved in this movie expected it to be a bit better.

I enjoy Milla jovovich as an actress but with her casting, this feels more like another disposable special effect fantasy horror film

She usually appears in and frankly not as inventive. Though she gives one of the better performances. 

This film already had an audience against it as the original al is so memorable and iconic and this reboot coming so soon that it feels like a dumbe down version and even when it was released

it wasn’t heavily advertised as much as movies like this usually are more In theater advertisements then public ones. I didn’t even know it’s Release date until the week before it actually came out 

Though based on original material this feels like an amalgam Of many fantasy tales and movies out there though al the action, special effects, and horror. It still manages to be boring.

It feels like an animated film come to life or amusement park inspired meant to impress a younger audience. But too harsh for them. 

Grade: C-