Blog Profile / ThomasSpurlin.com


URL :http://www.thomasspurlin.com/
Filed Under:Film / Film Reviews
Posts on Regator:344
Posts / Week:0.7
Archived Since:September 25, 2008

Blog Post Archive

'Batman & Harley Quinn' Reunion Overly Juvenile, Smutty

Directed by: Sam Liu; Runtime: 74 minutes Grade: D Criticisms are in no short supply for the current state of DC's cinematic universe, but there's one so widespread that it approaches being a running pop-culture joke: that these movies, especially the ones featuring Batman, are exceedingly dark and lack humor. Show More Summary

Movies I Love: Whale Rider

Tales of rising women warriors -- notably women on the cusp of adulthood -- who must work against the resistance of a masculine environment, often tribal or clannish in nature, have arisen in many different forms through history. Spanning...Show More Summary

'Sleight' Has Emotive, Archetypal Tricks Up Superhero Sleeve

Directed by: JD Dillard; Runtime: 89 minutes Grade: C+ The line between realism and fantasy continues to be tested in certain superhero movies, notably with independent films that look at their budget and production constraints as challenging opportunities instead of burdens. Show More Summary

Classic Musings: La Poison (1951)

Most movies out there exist to hold the audience's attention from the beginning to the end credits, possessing dramatic buildup or comedic twists and turns that create a consistent level of engagement throughout. Then, there are films...Show More Summary

Lovecraft Mystique of "Feed the Light" Sluggish, Overbearing

Directed by: Henrik Moller; Runtime: 75 minutes Grade: D+ "Lovecraftian horror" has become increasingly more mainstream over the past decade or so, and that's largely due to the Cthulhu mythology, the end-of-the-world ominousness built around an enormous winged monster with tentacles dangling from its mouth and underneath its hungry eyes. Show More Summary

Armie Hammer Can't Keep Preposterous 'Mine' From Blowing

Directed by: Fabio Guaglione and Fabio Resinaro; Runtime: 106 minutes Grade: D+ Military movies tend to get away with significant embellishments in their depictions of warfare and the soldier culture, so long as they either captivate with the caliber of action involved or deliver a poignant message about the perils of service. Show More Summary

'Absolutely Anything' Not Particularly Out There, Funny Enough

Directed by: Terry Jones; Runtime: Grade: D+ The Fermi paradox puts into words one of the common considerations someone might have regarding the presence of alien life: if they're out there, why haven't we directly interacted with them?...Show More Summary

'Dragonheart' Further Fizzles Out with 'Battle of the Heartfire'

Directed by: Patrik Syversen; Runtime: 98 minutes Grade: C-/D+ The original Dragonheart turned twenty years old last year -- gasp! -- and despite the dated CG wizardry and heavy melodramatics, it's still a charming and satisfying burst of fantasy action that continues to win its battle against the test of time. Show More Summary

A Funny, Flawed, Dependent 'Homecoming' For Spider-Man

Directed by: Jon Watts; Runtime: 133 minutes Grade: B Some might see the momentum behind Spider-Man: Homecoming as hype, but it's closer to pressure on this unique partnership between Sony and Marvel Studios to, in the mindset of the incredible dedicated fans of the webslinger, to finally get the character completely and utterly right. Show More Summary

Taymor's 'Midsummer Night's Dream' a Feast For the Senses

Directed by: Julie Taymor; Runtime: 145 minutes Grade: B+ The expectations one has for watching a taping of a theatrical play will likely vary from person to person, hinged on how they interpret the statement: "It's as if I were actually there". Show More Summary

Ignore the Dull, Derivative Rapping of 'Don't Knock Twice'

Directed by: Caradog James; Runtime: 93 minutes Grade: D+ Apparently, I'm a vigorous door-knocker, because it's tough for me to work out a scenario where I'd have the restraint to only knock twice on someone's door. Three or four times, sure, and certainly five if a quicker response seems necessary … but twice? It seems so calculated and brief. Show More Summary

'Beguiled' Dishes Out Hypnotic, Slow-Burn Civil War Tension

Directed by: Sofia Coppola; Runtime: 93 minutes Grade: B+ It's been a while since Sofia Coppola has directed a piece of work stemming from somebody else's storytelling, dating back nearly twenty years prior to the release of The Beguiled, her latest atmospheric period thriller. Show More Summary

Hughes, Krispy Kreme, and the Odd 'Power Rangers' Reboot

Directed by: Dean Israelite; Runtime 124 minutes Grade: C- There's a clear breaking point in Power Rangers that morphs Saban's cinematic reboot of the superhero franchise from a disposable, yet tolerable nostalgic throwback into an obnoxious product that takes one straight out of its shallow escapism. Show More Summary

LEGO Universe Returns With a Silly Satire of a 'Batman Movie'

Directed by: Chris McKay; Runtime: 104 minutes Grade: C+ The Lego Movie came together at an ideal point in the history of the iconic building blocks, right when popularity was toned-down toward both the toys themselves and the brand's humorous videogame adaptations -- tie-ins -- of popular movies. Show More Summary

Battles, Lore, Charm of 'Wonder Woman' Worth Believing In

Directed by: Patty Jenkins; Runtime: 141 minutes Grade: A- Finally. There are several ways to interpret it when a discussion about Patty Jenkins' Wonder Woman begins with something like: "Finally." Perhaps it references the legion of...Show More Summary

Classic Musings: The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1963)

My relationship with musicals is, overall, a little complicated. The exceptionally vibrant attitudes, the bubbly dialogue, and the unnatural introduction of songs into everyday activities might be common criticisms lobbed at the genre, but they're also what hold me back from embracing more of those productions. Show More Summary

'Covenant' an Intense, Vacuous Hybrid of 'Alien', 'Prometheus'

Directed by: Ridley Scott; Runtime: 122 minutes Grade: C+ Despite a moderately successful box-office turnout (worldwide) and earning generally positive marks from the critic community, Ridley Scott's Prometheus quickly earned and has...Show More Summary

While Stagy, 'The Crucible' Captures Play's Paranoia, Critiques

Directed by: Nicholas Hytner; Runtime: 124 minutes Grade: B- To critique the Nicholas Hytner-directed version of The Crucible is to essentially critique the play itself, both the strengths and the pitfalls accompanying that. Playwright...Show More Summary

Classic Musings: Phaedra (1962)

Modernized adaptations of classic pieces of literature have always been a crapshoot, since their themes and dramatic overtures can get watered down in the updates leveled on the setting. There's something universally impactful aboutShow More Summary

'Frontier' Puts Nostalgic Copying Above Credible Thrills, Drama

Directed by: Oren Shai; Runtime: 88 minutes Grade: C- A lot of cinematic gems that were released in the ‘70s remain largely hidden in obscurity, especially in the crime and mystery subgenres involving a drifter of sorts... but, of course, not all those movies released during that period have the merits or general strengths to be sought after. Show More Summary

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