A Dog’s Way Home (2019) – Go Home!

Released: 28th February
Seen: 24th February (Advanced Screening)

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I didn’t start reviewing movies until about June of 2017. I was pretty slow for a few months when I first started doing this because I was in the throes of university so, at the end of the year, I decided to do a little game of catch up where I would go to my local library and rent movies I had missed throughout the year to watch them for review. One of those movies was A Dogs Purpose, which was instantly my worst movie of 2017, is still the most awful movie I’ve watched since I started reviewing and the front runner for my most hated movie of all time because I have no time or patience for a movie that tries to use dog death as a substitute for emotional quality storytelling. It’s a loathsome film that made $200milliion worldwide because God hates me. So when I heard that there was going to be a spin off movie I was already starting to whimper in irritation because I knew I’d need to see it, and I did… and congrats movie, you suck less than a movie with five dead dogs, this is the biggest compliment I intend on giving you.

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Paddleton (2019) – Sweet Enough

Released: 22th February
Seen: 23rd February

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Originally, I was planning to see a movie called Lords of Chaos, a thriller about a Norwegian Black Metal band. I didn’t know much about it, other than it was inspired by an actual band and involved suicide, murder, arson and other shocking concepts. I was going to go see that but since I don’t make money from this and don’t get critic screenings a cost factor kicked in and I decided it wasn’t worth it so instead I ended up watching a movie about a man slowly dying of cancer… which, shockingly, was way more enjoyable sounding than the movie about the Norwegian Black Metal band.

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Polar (2019) – Sub-Zero-Par

Released: 25th January
Seen: 22nd February

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On the 1st of February in 1982, the television sketch comedy series Not the Nine O’clock News aired an episode that contained a song called “Nice Video, Shame about the Song”. The song was a satire of the recently created MTV and in particular the music videos that had begun littering it with insanely strange yet interesting imagery that accompanied substandard songs. This was the era when all you needed to make it in the music industry was a confusing “artistic” music video that ran through every new tool that was made available at the time. The Not the Nine O’clock News team satirized this by making the most garishly elaborate video they possibly could, complete with images of comical satanic rituals and Elizabethan dress-up, all set to a song that was intentionally designed to be confusingly bad. It’s one of the most gloriously pointed critiques of the music video genre and the phrase “Nice video, shame about the song” became a bit of a personal shorthand for films that worry so much about looking cool that they don’t bother thinking about things like plot, character or dialogue. Films like Avatar or Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets are films that I would put into this category… and now, we can throw Polar into that very specific group of films

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Stan & Ollie (2019) – Well, here’s another nice movie you’ve gotten me into!

Released: 21st February
Seen: 21st February

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When you look back through the history of cinema there are only a few performers who can truly be considered icons. One of the biggest icons in the history of cinema is Laurel & Hardy, a comedy duo who made over 100 films together over the course of about two decades where they basically were the biggest names in comedy. Their partnership started almost by accident, the two of them were part of the old Hollywood system that signed people up to contracts that kept them working for years and turned them into one of the most iconic duos in history. It was almost inevitable that some portion of their lives was going to be turned into a biopic, as it seems Hollywood loves to tell stories about itself. Of all the stories that could’ve been told, the one they picked was absolutely perfect.

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Oscar Predictions – 2019

So, this year’s Oscars are going to be a complete farce aren’t they? I mean, have you all been following how everything’s been going over there? With them cutting categories from the broadcast then putting them back in and not having a host because they decided that it wasn’t important enough to hire a new one when their last one quit because he refused to say “I’m sorry” when it came out that he’d made homophobic statements that technically count as jokes because he didn’t mean them (because that’s a joke now, apparently). Oh and then there’s the stuff about them nominating a film made by an accused sex offender,  one of the directors being kind of called out for flashing people on set, then there was the stuff about them not showing all the Best Original Song nominees until they got serious backlash from everyone, including Lin Manuel Miranda who literally wrote one of the songs that weren’t going to be performed… yeah, this ceremony is going to be a mess and because it’s going to be a mess, it’s time to be messy and pick who I, someone with no influence whatsoever, think should get each one of these formerly-prestigious awards that are now basically glorified advertisements for movies that they want people to go see and not an actual display of what would be considered “Best” of anything… I’M BITTER, IN CASE YOU CAN’T TELL!

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If Beale Street Could Talk (2019) – Let Them Talk

Released: 7th February
Seen: 18th February

If Beale Street Could Talk Info

In America today, one of the major issues is the way people are shuttled through the prison system, specifically people of colour. Thanks to a large amount of systemic racism that poisoned the prison system, African Americans now make up over a third of the prison population while only making up roughly a tenth of the American population. For me to go further into the details of what this means would be a pointless aside, though if you want the full context you’re going to need for this film then I suggest watching the amazing (and should’ve been Academy Award winning) documentary 13th on Netflix. The story of the prison system and what it has done to black American’s is the backdrop for If Beale Street Could Talk and while you might not need that bit of knowledge, it will make the film a richer experience.

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On the Basis Of Sex (2019) – Notorious

Released: 7th February

Seen: 18th February

On The Basis Of Sex Info

When the history of the fight for women’s rights is written, a solid chunk of that book will inevitably revolve around Ruth Bader Ginsburg, current Justice of the Supreme Court and (hopefully) owner of the philosopher’s stone that will grant her immortality so that she may survive for another millennium. She is, unquestionably, one of the key figures in the women’s rights movement and it seemed inevitable that her rise from law student to Supreme Court Justice would be turned into a biopic at some point, and it got one in the form of On The Basis of Sex.

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