I made a total of six treks to my local cinema in the month of May. All in all, not the best month. Nothing thoroughly impressed me. On top of that, a film disappointed me and another was trash. Not gonna take long to get to those two, so let’s begin.
How to Be a Latin Lover was hot garbage. Outside of a completely random and incredibly short “Weird Al” Yankovic cameo, this movie has nothing going for it. The jokes are terrible, the attempts at heart just feel cheap, and everybody I knew of before seeing this movie was better elsewhere. Eugenio Derbez, the lead actor in this travesty of comedy, apparently got his big break, as far as American audiences are concerned, in Jack and Jill, a movie certainly in the top 10 of films I will never see. That should have been a clue. I have no idea how this movie got a 40% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Other movies I saw this very month got worse ratings and are certainly better than this crapshoot.
NOT WORTH SEEING.
A movie, while disappointing, is unfortunately movie of the month because nothing else topped it. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 should have been better. The first one was absolutely awesome. Top 3 MCU film-level awesome. The bar for MCU films is so high and this movie failed to clear it. Not spectacularly so, of course. But I wanted this movie to be out of this world. And it just wasn’t. It teeters between a B+ and an A- when the average for MCU films is about a 95. I may not have really explained this clearly before, but the difference between a 90 and a 100 from me is a vast ocean. Chris Pratt is great but the movie spent almost the entire plot focused on him. Few other characters got to shine for any considerable period. Baby Groot was indeed very fun, especially a part near the beginning. I have trouble giving a definitive rating for this picture. It’s stuck in the 87 to 90 range. So, for the first time since I’ve been doing this, I have to give a hybrid rating.
SEE IT MORE THAN ONCE./SEE IT A MILLION TIMES!
A movie some critics told me to avoid, but Jeremy Jahns said was fine. It certainly bombed at the box office, but I saw it anyway. King Arthur: Legend of the Sword has its moments. Charlie Hunnam gave a passable yet charming performance as Arthur. He certainly had better screen presence than his flat performance in Pacific Rim. Don’t get me wrong, that movie was pretty awesome at times. His acting (and chemistry with his supposed love interest) was not part of the awesome. The standout in this film was clearly Jude Law. Dude plays a good villain. I didn’t realize until I looked up the cast list that English soccer player David Beckham was in the movie, for some reason. We also got at least two Game of Thrones actors in this. Eh, it’s a fantasy film. Why not? In the end, I’ll probably never see this film again. But I still enjoyed myself.
SEE IT ONCE.
Two Charlie Hunnam movies in one month! And one I saw the day after the last one. The Lost City of Z is even technically a 2016 movie. This film, while not terrible, isn’t really that great either. Charlie Hunnam, as the lead, gave a good performance, but I feel like the material of the film gave him very little to do outside of things happening to him and then him later talking about those things. Tom Holland, the new Spider-Man, is in this. The material again being a problem because his acting just doesn’t come off right. I blame the writing for that. The drama and the mystery of the film add a lot, but the spoken words feel stilted from almost everyone. The stage direction is generally phenomenal as is the cinematography. This movie had a lot going for it, but the writing just holds it back a fair bit. It has to be said: Robert Pattinson was really good in this. That’s one way to shake off the stank of sparkly vampire.
SEE IT ONCE.
While certainly better than Prometheus, Alien: Covenant does not hold a candle to Alien or Aliens. The problem with this film is a markedly noticeable lack of suspense. There’s also a blatantly obvious twist that a three year old would see coming. Just like Prometheus, plot holes abound. Ridley Scott clearly wants to do more of these origin films. “Where did the Xenomorphs come from?” is certainly a fair question, but the answer so far isn’t that satisfying. I will probably never see this again.
SEE IT ONCE.
I don’t know why, but I somehow enjoyed this movie more than nearly every other film this month. That probably speaks to the relative poor quality of those films than it speaks to the relative high quality of this film. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales ended up being a genuinely good time from my perspective. It’s a movie that greatly benefits from the large screen of a theater. Lots of swashbuckling action and high adventure. Johnny Depp proves once again Captain Jack Sparrow is the role he was born to play. Javier Bardem continues to show he’s best as a villain no matter what form that villainy takes. Brutal evil, creepy evil, and campy evil. He’s done all three of those well. Oh, and if you were wondering, this fifth installment in the franchise was better than the fourth one.
SEE IT MORE THAN ONCE.
Thinking back to earlier this year, xXx: Return of Xander Cage is not worth an A rating from me. I have downgraded it to the 80 range. I think I was just in too good a mood when I reflected back on it. Just thought I’d clear the air. I felt like I had to.