Pitch Perfect 3
Do we need this? Well, no we don't.
The Pitch Perfect series has had some real fine moments of fun, satire and self lampooning. But the old saying three's a crowd is apt here.
OK, the music with the Bellas and the supporting cast is good again, as it always is with these movies. But the rest of this is a just a mess. They say this is the end of this very successful series, but I'll believe it when I don't see it.
There is nothing really new here. Same characters, same jokes, same delivery, and same formula. Movie makes just can't help themselves sometimes. Take a nice original idea and over time make it anything but anymore, and that's the trouble here. You're gonna throw down 10 bones or so and see the exact same movie you saw a couple years ago.
Pitch Perfect 3. Save your money.
The Greatest Showman
Hugh Jackman, Zac Efron and Michelle Williams star in this new story of the real P.T. Barnum in this LA LA Land type of musical. This movie is going to be this years LA LA Land, as it has the same feel, and made by many of the same people. This is very good by any measure, and will be enjoyed by many.
Great music, and solid production numbers, and some by any account, are simply breathtaking. This story moves along nicely, has something to say, says it, and finishes up. This is only about 1 hour 45 and that is plenty. This is not a "total" musical like Les Mis, but is more like the more modern LA LA Land.
Jackman is great, and I have yet to see a movie where Williams isn't brilliant. She is quietly become Hollywood's best actress. I love her in this.
The Greatest Showman. Quite good, and good for the whole family.
You know, you kind of have to like this flick, even if it's full of guilty pleasure laughs, and some juvenile humor. This does grow a heart and is not exactly what you think it will be. This stars Owen Wilson, Ed Helms, Glenn Close and a bunch of others in a story where two 40 somethings go looking for their biological father.
This is crass, crude and silly at times, but in the end, there is a story here and, twists and turns you won't see coming. Yes, this sells out at times for some stupid laughs, but overall this is far better than its packaging. Is this going to win an Oscar? Well no, but this is generally OK for those over 16 to see, and will be a nice getaway when you need to get out of the house and laugh over the holidays.
Father Figures. Better than you may think.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi
Real quick here. Reviewing Star Wars is almost futile. Fans of this franchise simply love every frame of this series, and this movie before ever seeing it. And if you're a fan of this, you will love this.
There is lots to like here, and it's a visual feast for sure. But this is a bit lengthy at 2 hours 20. And to me, as I am not a super fan of this series, many of these are now really looking much the same. What this is, is simply another Star Wars flick, and not a terribly great - movie. But many times franchises as large as this are compared against each other and not other movies. So it's a solid Star Wars movie.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Solid, entertaining, and a favorite for its fans.
It would be very tough to release a movie that is better timed in its release than this one. Jumanji is the continuation of sorts of the 1996 original and it is updated very nicely for the new century and more up to date movie making. This stars, The Rock, Jack Black, Kevin Hart and a really nice supporting cast, that is well casted and flat out funny.
This time, our heroes go inside the game of Jumanji instead of the game coming to them. The effects are fun, the script is very solid and the imagination here is really the star. It would have been very easy to make the same movie over again, but they did not. This does a great job of tipping the cap to the original and just keeping the fun going.
Many people may wonder why this has been rebooted, and the answer is clear. This is funny, entertaining and virtually good for everyone to see. This by the numbers will be no Star Wars, but this will be the family fun movie of the Christmas season.
Jumanji. Flat out fun. Well done!
The Shape Of Water
This is nominated for a ton of Golden Globes and there is a lot to like here. This movie has a huge check in the positive category. It is an original. A story you have not seen told this way before. Although this borrows a few "feels" from some classic stories, TSOW, is an original.
It takes place in 1962 in Cold War America, Baltimore being precise. The US Government has captured a "swamp type creature" in the Amazon, and brought him to America. Many think he could provide keys to winning the space race with the Soviet Union, as he possesses many incredible traits. Problem is, he's a creature, and there are those that want to kill him and examine him. All except a young, lonely, pretty, and mute woman, Elisa. She is on the cleaning crew.
She falls in love with the creature, and he with her. And you can take it from there. The question is, can he be saved, and can they be "together" forever? There are moments this is really nice, and exciting, and there are moments this is really - weird! This overall looks great and takes you back to 1962 very well, and is very original.
The Shape Of Water. An acquired taste.