Beguiled Driver Me (This Week’s Movies)


Ansel Elgort: Baby Driver (courtesy Wilson Webb/Sony/TriStar)

Links to my reviews published this week in the Herald and Seattle Weekly.

The Beguiled. “Sofia Coppola in signature mode, creating voluptuous sights and sounds that disguise a serious deficiency of ideas.”

Baby Driver. “Fast, violent, and absurd — and the driving is a blast, performed by stunt drivers, not digital effects.”

Despicable Me 3. “Feels like three different ideas patched together and played out in disconnected skits.”


Movie Diary 6/28/2017

Spider-Man: Homecoming (Jon Watts, 2017). I see this is embargoed for another few hours. So I suppose I will wait to say something about an actual, extremely welcome summer movie for 2017. (full review 7/7)

Movie Diary 6/27/2017

Despicable Me 3 (Eric Guillon, Kyle Balda, Pierre Coffin, 2017). I get the minions and all that, but in some basic way I don’t understand the success of these pictures. At least this one has the voice of Trey Parker as the villain, a former mullet-head child actor now wreaking his vengeance on Hollywood. (full review 6/30)

The Beguiled (Don Siegel, 1971). First viewing in many years of this wildly unusual movie, which is currently being dismissed (not by all) as some kind of macho precursor to the Sofia Coppola remake. One of the movie’s many strengths is the way it portrays the wounded soldier as a lying, aggressive asshole, and how skillfully Clint Eastwood plays that part to a fare-thee-well.

Transformers Hero Storm (This Week’s Movies)


Mark Wahlberg, Transformers: The Last Knight (courtesy Paramount Pictures – Bay Films)

Links to my reviews published this week in the Herald and Seattle Weekly, and etc.

Transformers: The Last Knight. “Bay has now made five of these things. Even at their best (Part 3 was wild fun), they are ludicrous and insane. The fact that they’ve been popular will astonish and puzzle future generations, much as the presence of the Transformers is bewildering to the Earthlings of the films.”

After the Storm. “Kore-eda has gotten to the point where even when his work isn’t top-drawer, it’s exceptionally nice to be around.”

The Hero. “For diehard Sam Elliott fans, think of this as a bookend to his 1976 cult picture, “Lifeguard,” in which he played a beach hunk contemplating the meaning of it all.”

The most recent Framing Pictures panel is watchable online at the Seattle Channel website and viewable, TV-wise, on the Seattle Channel over the course of the next few days. The panelists (Richard T. Jameson, Kathleen Murphy, Bruce Reid, and me) sort through the new Twin Peaks, Wonder Woman, plus new home-vid of Nicholas Ray’s They Live by Night and Sam Peckinpah’s The Ballad of Cable Hogue. Watch here.

Movie Diary 6/21/2017

War for the Planet of the Apes (Matt Reeves, 2017). Hey, they finally did one of these I liked. I mean, since the 70s. It’s as slow and serious as a biblical epic, and the approach kinda works. (full review 7/14)

Baby Driver (Edgar Wright, 2017). This one got a lot of fun buzz in its festival screenings, and “fun buzz” is an apt term for it. Possibly the only term. Jamie Foxx, Jon Hamm, Kevin Spacey all have good day-off vibes going. (full review 6/30)

Movie Diary 6/20/2017

Transformers: The Last Knight (Michael Bay, 2017). It’s dumb. A few shots are busy and wild, but sitting with an audience watching this idiocy is like measuring the end of culture as we know it. It stars Mark Wahlberg and Anthony Hopkins – just savor that sentence for a moment, too. (full review 6/21)

The Hero (Brett Haley. 2017). Sam Elliott does a very pleasant job of inhabiting a role that is tailor-made for him. The movie has some stock situations but a couple of nifty ones, too. (full review 6/23)

Movie Diary 6/19/2017

Transformers: The Last Knight (Michael Bay, 2017). Embargo! See you 24 hours from now.