Lucky (2021) – Outside Luck

So, Soda & Telepaths let me go on again about another film, this time the upcoming horror film Lucky that’ll be on Shudder in a number of days. Go read it, it’s a good movie and I wrote good words about it

The Map Of Tiny Perfect Things (2021) – Almost Nearly Average

Released: 12th February
Seen: 17th February

“It’s Groundhog Day, except…” is a fairly easy way of describing most movies that feature a time loop situation, it tells everyone exactly what to expect right off the bat. For example, Happy Death Day is “It’s Groundhog Day, except there’s a killer on the loose”. Well, when it comes to describing the charmingly simple The Map Of Tiny Perfect Things, I’m gonna go with “It’s Groundhog Day, except with teenagers”… yes I did just copy my entire opening paragraph from my Palm Springs review, there aren’t many ways to open a review that has a Groundhog Day premise and this film is good but not so good that I feel the need to try hard to come up with a great opening.

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To All The Boys: Always And Forever (2021) – It’s Sweet

Released: 12th February
Seen: 16th February

To All The Boys: Always And Forever Info

Some films require a lot of thought, you need to sit down with it to figure out what it meant by using a certain camera angle or how a certain line is a reference to a piece of ancient text that sets up something in the end. Some films are hard to write about because they’re so complicated that everything could easily be considered a spoiler. Then there are films like the To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before trilogy which are just so easy going and sweet that you barely have to think about them, you can just enjoy them and not worry about them being anything more complicated than sweet little teen romance films that just barely approach the line of saccharine without fully crossing it.

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Bliss (2021) – Uggh

Released: 5th February
Seen: 8th February

Have you ever noticed how there are some movies that think they’re saying something smart, but’re in fact the dumbest pieces of shit you’ve ever seen? You know the kind of movie where you can almost hear the film theory teachers bouncing with excitement because they’ll get to show it to a class of bored 20 year olds who don’t get what’s so special about the film (because there’s nothing special about it) but want to pass so they make something up? The cinematic equivalent of a guy who wears glasses because he thinks it makes him look smart? Well, whatever list of films you just thought of, you can throw Bliss onto the list because this film really wants you to think that it’s brilliant but that would imply that it’s even worthy of thought.

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Strip Down, Rise Up (2021) – The Power Behind The Pole

Released: 5th February
Seen: 8th February

In 2019 the world was rocked by a single moment, that moment being in the movie Hustlers when Jennifer Lopez walked onto a stage while Criminal by Fiona Apple played and performed a pole dance that commanded the attention of anyone who saw it. The pure athleticism and power on display was magnetic and there is no doubt in my mind that this moment led to a whole bunch of women buying poles to fit into their workout routines. Pole Dancing as a workout routine has been around for a long time, and in the documentary Strip Down, Rise Up we get to see just how powerful and meaningful this dance can be for women.

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Malcolm & Marie (2021) – Artsy Arguments

Released: 5th February
Seen: 7th February

During the last year, a lot of films and TV series have had to adapt to this strange new world of the pandemic. Some shows just stopped filming all together, others imposed strict rules to maintain safety. Watch a recent episode of Law & Order SVU and you’ll see large plastic barriers everywhere to protect the cast that had to be written into the text of the show. It’s also led to a lot of films being created from scratch to adapt to this new world of Covid.

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Wrong Turn (2021) – Sorry, Wrong Franchise

Released: 26th January
Seen: 7th February

Wrong Turn Info

Have you ever heard the story of how Saw 2 came to be? After the monster success of the first Saw movie the producers were desperate for a second film but the original writers didn’t have the time to come up with a new script. While trying to think of what to do the producers happened upon a script that’d been sent to them by Darren Lynn Boseman that was called The Desperate. After reading it they realised that a few modifications to the script would make it fit in with the Saw franchise and that’s how we ended up with the Saw 2 film that we got. I bring this up because I am convinced that a similar situation happened here with Wrong Turn aka The Foundation.

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Palmer (2021) – Surprisingly Touching

Released: 29th January
Seen: 4th Febuary

Palmer Info

So, stop me if you’ve heard this one. A man is living on his own with no real desire to be around other people, especially kids. One day out of the blue a kid ends up on his doorstep and he’s obliged to take care of the youth because something has happened to their parents. His disdain for raising children ends up slowly changing now that he finally met one and just as he turns a corner and becomes a fully functioning member of society, the parent comes back and there’s an emotional scene where everyone realises that this mysterious man is a better parent than the parent, roll credits. Yeah, that’s the basic plot of Palmer and at least a dozen other films that you can probably name (why not name them in the comments, engagement is king!) and it takes an interesting twist to make the story interesting. Palmer has such a twist and it’s pretty impressive.

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