This week on the Cinemaholics podcast, we review ‘Men,’ Alex Garland’s new A24 horror starring Jessie Buckley and Rory Kinnear.
Fasten your seatbelts, and yes, “F” is for family. That’s right, we’re talking F9: The Fast Saga this week, which is the ninth film in Universal’s Fast & Furious franchise. Once again starring Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Charlize Theron, plus newcomer John Cena, F9 is now in theaters and running laps around the box office. Also in this week’s show, we talk about False Positive, a new horror movie starring Ilana Glazer that is currently haunting Hulu. And we finish out this long and winding episode with The Ice Road, a new Netflix action thriller starring Liam Neeson.
Our sueñito this week is to review In the Heights, the film adaptation of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s hit Broadway musical from 2008, directed by Jon M. Chu with a screenplay from Quiara Alegría Hudes. Now in theaters and on HBO Max for a limited time, this massive spectacle of a Nuevo York musical stars Anthony Ramos, Corey Hawkins, Leslie Grace, Melissa Barrera, Olga Merediz, Jimmy Smits, and many more. We kick off this week’s show with some mini reviews for George A. Romero’s lost film The Amusement Park and Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway. And we finish this extra-long show with reviews for Wish Dragon, Holler, Censor, and The Misfits.
Godzilla vs. Kong comes packaged with an easy enough proposition for monster movie fans who’ve been craving something larger than life to hit their screen this year. It’s the culmination of several films all building upon one another since Gareth Edwards’ reboot of the central character in 2014, but the irony is that you don’t really need to see any of those films (or remember what happened in them, honestly) in order to get the full experience of this globe-trotting, city-smashing, Kaiju death match.
Bob Odenkirk is an unlikely action hero in Nobody, a new thriller from Ilya Naishuller, the director of Hardcore Henry. We discuss the film and Odenkirk’s surprising turn in it as a seemingly mediocre guy who goes full John Wick when a mob of Russians begins to target him and his family. Afterward, we discuss Bad Trip on Netflix and The Courier, which recently hit theaters.
Tom Holland and Ciara Bravo star in Cherry, a new heavy drama on Apple TV+ from the Russo Brothers. We discuss the film and its interesting…perspectives on this week’s show, along with reviews for Yes Day, Kid90, and The Last Right. We open the show with a quick, super-serious crossover with Biff and Marty from Collision Movie Smackdown, in which they interview “Tom Holland.”
Unlike Tom the cat and Jerry the mouse, we actually speak in this week’s show, as we discuss the new live-action family comedy Tom & Jerry, which just hit HBO Max and puts the classic Hanna-Barbera cartoon characters into New York City with a host of human characters you definitely won’t care about. We also review The United States vs. Billie Holiday on Hulu and Billie Eilish: The World’s a Little Blurry on Apple TV+. Plus, we do a quick mini review of The Mauritanian and play some listener voicemails.
If you’ve ever overhead an argument between Jon and Will right here on Cinemaholics, you’re pretty much prepared for Malcolm and Marie, a new Netflix film directed and written by Sam Levinson. This enclosed black-and-white drama stars Zendaya and John David Washington, and critics are pretty split on this film about relationships and, well, critics. Also in the show, we play some listener voicemails about the state of movie trailers and review several other new films, which include A Glitch in the Matrix, Little Fish, and more.
Promising Young Woman is mad. Damn mad. And it damn well should be. The feature screenwriting and directorial debut of Emerald Fennell (Killing Eve) is a consciously, thoughtfully thorny and confrontational revenge story, driven boldly by its star performance from Carey Mulligan. It tensely and intently examines the #MeToo era with a bold disregard for what anyone might think or say. Filled with simmering rage, and a film that’s often eager to examine the layers of hypocrisies through which a “boys will be boys” culture has been formed in institutions over the course of generations, this cinematic takedown is a vibrant effort to dispel “nice guys” and dismantle a society that often sides with men while disrupting women’s futures in the process.
I’m not exactly sure how to sell you on Frederick Wiseman’s City Hall. This sweeping, sprawling, four-and-a-half-hour documentary is a massive, city-wide examination of the inner workings of Boston’s government and public services. It’s an elaborate, expansive look at what makes a city the way it is, how its citizens and political leaders work hard to keep everything running, and the seemingly endless hurdles that poor and marginalized individuals often need to go through in order to make their voices heard. It’s a bulky, burgeoning enterprise of a documentary that’s as interested in watching town hall officials speak to the masses as it is watching the local garbagemen take out the trash on their regular circuits.
In our first official episode with new Cinemaholics co-host Abby Olcese, we discuss the honor and honor that is to be found honorable in Mulan, the latest live-action Disney remake, which stars Liu Yifei, Donnie Yen, Tzi Ma, Gong Li, and Jet Li. Plus, we review Charlie Kaufman’s new mind-bending film I’m Thinking of Ending Things, which is now on Netflix and stars Jessie Buckley, Jesse Plemons, Toni Collette, and David Thewlis.
In this special bonus episode, guests Cory Woodroof and Charlie Ridgely join Will Ashton for an in-depth review of Tenet, the newest film from director Christopher Nolan.
As a business model, Disney’s years-long effort to re-capitalize its most iconic animated films of yesteryear into big-budget, live-action (or live-action-esque in the case of last year’s The Lion King) reimaginings has been nothing short of a financial masterstroke, not too far below the juggernaut success of their Marvel and Star Wars acquisitions just a decade ago. In some ways, Mulan represents both the highs and lows of Disney’s trip down memory lane, from family favorites like The Jungle Book to more critically shrugged replicants like Beauty and the Beast. Either way, Mulan is sure to leave some audiences clamoring for more, while others might end up feeling somewhat cheated by what could’ve been.
Thanks to Disney’s Star Girl, I already know a movie like this — in which some poor young woman shows up from another town and sweeps a completely featureless guy off his feet — can still be made in 2020, but Chemical Hearts somehow takes this worn idea to another level.
Tesla stars Ethan Hawke as the titular inventor who navigates life in the 1800s, one of America’s most “brainstormy” times. Around him are a handful of equally inventive and enigmatic characters, such as Anne Morgan, portrayed by Eve Hewson, and George Westinghouse, portrayed by Jim Gaffigan. And of course, you can’t have a Tesla movie without his famous frenemy and rival in the electricity circuit, Thomas Edison; a role that is perfectly performed by Kyle MacLachlan in small doses. Edison isn’t in the film a whole lot, but he manages to steal the show in a manner accurate to how his real-life inspiration repeatedly stole Tesla’s thunder.
Is Jon Stewart’s sophomore feature film irresistible? Is Dave Bautista our kind of spy? Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga? Find out on this week’s episode of Cinemaholics Z.
When it was announced that Jon Stewart would return with his sophomore feature film, since titled Irresistible, it made sense that folks assumed it would be the scathing satire that would criticize and bring damnation to the hotheaded personalities who take rotating chairs in the Big House. But Stewart’s new movie, his first directorial effort since 2014’s overlooked Rosewater, may not be what some folks expect. Indeed, this is not a takedown of the narcissistic, hypocritical right. Stewart isn’t here to put some right-leaning personalities into their place.
Zoinks! Like, we’re finally reviewing Scoob! man! I’m Mathew Lillard, the real voice of Shaggy, and Jon and Will hired me to write this episode description for them. Those guys really know how to make a dude like me feel welcome. So like, special guests Matt Serafini and Chris Sheridan are totally here to help out, man! But I gotta be honest, why can’t we ever review, like, a Burger King or something? Anyway, you enjoy this review of Scoob! while I stay in the van and enjoy this chocolate pizza. What do you think, Frank—er, I mean Scoob? RUH-ROH RAGGY! What is it, Scoob? Wait, is that a…a…P-P-P-ODCAST JUMP THE SHARK MOMENT?! (running away sound effects)
Director Trey Edward Shults has a clear interest in the tools needed for families to survive whatever dangers may come their way. His sophomore film from 2017, It Comes at Night—also an A24 film—explored a heightened metaphor for the terrors parents inflict upon their children just as easily as they themselves fear it, and in Waves, Shults presents a far more grounded, but equally as harrowing tale about the fragility of success in modern America.
This is the episode we’ll be remembered for. This month on Extra Milestone, Jon, Sam, and Will discuss Tim Burton’s Ed Wood, which celebrates its 25th anniversary of release. We discuss how the film got made, its legacy over the years, and what we really think about it after all this time.
Since his first appearance in 1940, the Joker as a comic book villain (and later TV/Film/Video Game villain) has been an ever-evolving enigma, much like his darkly heroic counterpart. So it makes perfect sense for the films to continuously reinvent a character like the Joker, who serves a litany of important functions as an antagonistic presence.
In Pokémon Detective Pikachu, the rules of Pokémon and perhaps video game movies in general are turned on their head to seemingly serve a single purpose: give the people what they want. But what do audiences really want in a new Pokémon movie? A stylish film noir? A diversely casted Zootopia narrative? Dozens of CG monsters to adore and collect? The Ryan Reynolds brand of comedy under a PG rating? Or perhaps simply a reminder that when many of you were young, Pokémon (in some fashion) was a big deal to you, and now it can be a big deal to your kids.
Special guest Abby Olcese joins us as we cast our ballots for Long Shot, a brand new political romantic comedy starring Charlize Theron and Seth Rogen. But that’s not all! School is out but the party is just getting started. We’re doing an early review for the upcoming bad teen comedy Booksmart, the first film directed by Olivia Wilde. And later in the show, we discuss three new releases on Netflix: Extremely Wicked Shockingly Evil and Vile, Tuca & Bertie, and Knock Down the House.
Spring is in the air, and so is Captain Marvel. We’re flying higher, further, and faster in our review of the new Marvel superhero film starring Brie Larson, and joining us is special guest Kimber Myers of the LA Times. We also discuss Leaving Neverland, a new HBO documentary from Sundance about the sexual abuse allegations of Michael Jackson, as well as some other new releases like The Aftermath, The Kid, and one new TV series on TBS starring Steve Buscemi, Daniel Radcliffe and many others in Miracle Workers.
At one point in The Kid, a new western directed by Vincent D’Onofrio, someone utters the tremendously bold statement, “It only matters the story they tell when you’re gone.” With all due respect to real-life outlaw “Billy the Kid,” you probably deserve the story this film decides to tell about you.