As stated in last month’s rundown, there weren’t that many movies I was looking forward to this month. I made four trips to the theaters in the month of April. Probably would have been five, but I completely forgot about I Saw the Light until it was too late. Let’s just get on with it.
Easily my movie of the month, Hardcore Henry was awesome. Presumably the first film ever shot in solely first person (if we don’t count the title sequence for the opening credits,) it nails everything it needs to. And even goes places I was not expecting. Most of that has to do with Sharlto Copley’s character. It’s basically “Video Game: The Movie.” It even has moments where the action stops so we can all catch our breath, sort of like checkpoints. The film also decides not to explain everything. Do I need a backstory for the primary antagonist? No. Him just demonstrating his evil is the only motivation Henry (and the audience) needs. Such a good use of Queen. And a weird cameo by Zoolander Jr. Just go see it. If you love action, you will not be disappointed.
SEE IT A MILLION TIMES!
The big money maker of the month, The Jungle Book was an OK film. It was certainly better than Maleficent, but that’s not very difficult, at least in my book. Bill Murray as Baloo was certainly delightful, as was Christopher Walken’s character (which isn’t spoiled in the trailers, so I won’t spoil it here.) Did the world need a live action version of the last animated film Walt Disney worked on? No. (Nor do we need two of them, which is probably why the other one another studio is working on has been delayed.) But the voice acting is good, the sole on screen actor is serviceable, and there’s a charm to it all.
SEE IT ONCE.
Keanu was funny. And the eponymous kitten was indeed insanely cute. The title of the film and the premise of it belies that this is essentially Key & Peele’s comedic take on John Wick. And it is, sort of. Drug dealers, an animal that said drug dealers do something with… Well, actually, that’s where the similarities end, really. Maybe it was more of a wink and a nod thing. Most would probably say, as I would, that Key is the better of the two (his full slate of continued work in comparison to Peele’s makes this obvious.) And, in this film, he definitely stands out more. But Peele’s character, a man whose shallow life is given uplift by the surprise arrival of a kitten on his doorstep, is done very well. Not as gut-bustingly hilarious as I was expecting from the duo, but I very much enjoyed myself.
SEE IT MORE THAN ONCE.
The last movie I saw this month, which I got out of less than an hour before I started writing this article, was Ratchet & Clank. It had a good sense of humor to it. Definitely made for children. And this is Sony’s first real attempt to adapt one of their video game franchises. Now, I’ve never really played the series this movie is based on. Hell, if the DEATH BATTLE! with the duo in it hadn’t come out before this, I’d have known virtually nothing about the characters when I walked into the theater. The movie works; I just doubt that I’ll ever see it again. Captain Qwark was enjoyable.
SEE IT ONCE.
Next month gives audiences two superhero movies, both of which I’m very excited for. The Nice Guys also looks really fun, but that’s about it for movies I’m really looking forward to. I just hope my local indie theater has some good options to fill in the cracks.