Quick Movie Review: Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017)

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Fans may be frustrated with the lack of twists and big reveals in the new Star Wars movie. But personally, I’m glad there isn’t anything big. We don’t want these films to merely become fan pandering. Vehicles for countless Easter Eggs with the stories becoming second fiddle.

This is the middle act of a trilogy. It’s meant to keep the story going while presenting the perfect amount of conflict and resolution, balancing both. If it tries to do too much, it risks losing its identity and any cohesiveness developed so far.

Although J.J. Abrams directed Episode 7, and is slated to direct Episode 9, it was a good choice to get Rian Johnson on board to direct this installment.

While Abrams is a lover of popcorn entertainment that’s big and full of audience-craved plot points, Johnson isn’t as concerned with that. He’s focused more on giving us what we actually need. He builds up momentum slowly and knows how to give us the proper climax.

Johnson also directed last year’s Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, which I’m not a huge fan of, but can still appreciate. Rogue One is poetic, but doesn’t really come together until the end.

This was my fear with The Last Jedi. But since it utilizes The Force Awakens to help set up much of the story, it doesn’t have to focus on that as much here. And the poeticism works well for this one as the middle act. Though I wouldn’t want all of the films to be like this. I like my Star Wars a bit more popcorny–just like J.J. Abrams.

The Last Jedi starts off pretty slow. It takes place immediately after the events of the last film, and noticeably struggles to pick up the well-built momentum of its predecessor as well. Much of the first half is spent with Leia and the Resistance trying to survive attacks from the First Order. It’s interspersed with Rey trying to convince Luke to train her to become a Jedi Master.

This film is also much darker than the last. We’ve seen now that Johnson is also a big fan of the theme of finding hope amidst despair, yet constantly reminding us of that despair. Certain moments are very potent. Use the end of Rogue One for reference.

A truly bright spot in this film is the introduction of Benicio Del Toro’s computer hacker character, DJ. His moral compass points to neither good nor bad. He plays for himself and adjusts accordingly. And they brilliantly utilize him to parallel Kilo Ren–albeit a less monstrous version. Both men are capable of being empathetic and selfish at the same time. Del Toro’s existence in this movie is absolutely no throwaway.

As much as The Last Jedi will pride itself on staying true to its goal of telling a solid and important story first, it still has it’s fair share of surprises. Naturally though, there aren’t as many. We have to remember that these new stories must stand on their own at some point too.

As far as major plot points go, this film makes all the right decisions. It may not feel like a Star Wars film in the traditional sense, but it’s a really amazing story executed at the highest mark.

Twizard Rating: 100

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Quick Movie Review: Santa With Muscles (1996)

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It’s no surprise that Hulk Hogan’s film career never really took off. The only lines he can deliver convincingly are the ones that don’t require any eyebrow movement. Even Arnold Schwarzenegger was able to make good comedies.

But sad to say, I’m not sure Schwarzenegger could have saved this one either. Though, he would have made it a little bit more funny.

The film is doomed from the start. The script is awful. There are plot holes you can drive a train through, and the dialogue is cringy–containing unique lines such as, “See ya! Wouldn’t wanna be ya!” and “‘Never turn your back on someone in need.’ A friend of mine once told me that.” Also, it builds up speed slower than my ’88 Volvo on the freeway. You start looking at your watch a mere 15 minutes into it. Luckily though, if you stick around long enough it gets slightly better I suppose.

The movie follows Blake (Hogan), a rich and selfish millionaire who gets hit on the head and wakes up thinking he’s Santa Claus. He has a sudden urge to help out an orphanage in danger of being closed down illegally.

It’s a clever concept full of potential, and actually has some glimpses of brightness shining through. But it fumbles most opportunities it has to be better, often choosing silliness over quality.

It’s one of those films where they give the strong protagonist all kinds of unrealistic powers, like the ability to throw a grown man over a 7-foot fence. It’s so ridiculous. I guess we have to remember it’s a movie targeted at children.

But then, why are there cops shooting RPGs at a car during a high-speed chase?

Also, what was the artistic decision to have it set in California rather than a snowy city? That simple change would have made it a lot more Christmasy.

Still, it has a touch of unexpected science fiction and some interesting twists that have pretty much no business in a film this poor, making it end up being way better than it starts out. Unfortunately, before these things come into the story, most viewers will have likely stopped watching already.

Twizard Rating: 48

Quick Movie Review: A Bad Moms Christmas (2017)

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While sequels to movies like Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey take 25 years to get greenlit, 2016’s Bad Moms begins principal photography on its followup just 10 months after its release.

In a sequel more rushed than Porky’s 2, Bad Moms Christmas must’ve had some sort of high demand. I know I was very surprised with the first film, but in no way did I need a sequel a year later. Especially if I knew it was going to look like this.

The premise revolves around the three main characters from last time–played by Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell, and Kathryn Hahn–having issues with their own mothers as they visit during Christmastime.

Of course, it wouldn’t be hilarious unless their moms had putrid flaws. And the writers know this as well, which is why we get cookie cutter maternal stereotypes: the over-bearing mother who never gives her daughter any space (Cheryl Hines), the mother who neglects her daughter and only comes around to ask for money (Susan Sarandon), and the high expectations mother whose daughter can never do anything right (Christine Baranski)–all three played way over the top in the most annoying and unrealistic way possible.

But that’s pretty much the whole movie. Everything the characters do or say to each other is unrealistic. The hijinks always ensues because of this. In fact, it NEEDS character responses to be impractical in order for it to exist. It merely serves to further the plot and allow the story to keep going.

Which it barely even does. Up until the last 10 minutes, nothing develops between the beginning and end of this movie. There’s just scenario after scenario of the mothers doing things to upset or annoy their daughters. It’s the final straw about eleven different times, yet there are no changes in the outcome or how the characters deal with it either way, because no one possesses any real self-awareness. The characters just keep getting angry, and so do we.

And it’s not just the lack of development that keeps it running at snail’s pace. The humor is juvenile and unfunny. So many scenes are halted by verbose dialogue that’s supposed to make us laugh. We don’t. When a film draws out comedic scenes for too long–which is a trend these days–it suspends any momentum that the narrative has built. But when it happens over and over again, there becomes almost no momentum to be suspended in the first place.

On paper, this movie should be good. But this proves that a film is so much more than its actors. A Bad Moms Christmas is a complete waste of its talents.

There are countless comedies that are forgettable, yet still give us one or two memorable moments. They won’t ever be considered classics, but they were never trying to be. You have to take them at face value. However, even at face value, this one is way below par.

Twizard Rating: 41

Quick Movie Review: Murder On the Orient Express (2017)

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There aren’t nearly enough murder mysteries made these days. They’re fun, but I get how they’re difficult to execute. In these kinds of films, you have only the facts to look at. Whereas, in real life, you can look at if someone seems like they’re lying. In a movie, everyone is lying because they’re all actors. You can’t solve it from that. So the clues are all given in what the audience–and, in this case, the detective–knows, and nothing else.

Fortunately, we’re all on the same page in this one. Often times, the filmmakers have to give the on-screen detective some bit of information that we don’t get to know, in fear that we might solve it before we’re supposed to. But here, it’s not a crap shoot because we can still figure it out if we really think about it. Yet, we still don’t–unless we already know the story.

I suppose, however, that in these instances, the film is most enjoyable for those who haven’t read the book or watched any previous adaptations. Because the best part, still, is the mystery and the conclusion, itself. If one already knows the outcome, then they are looking at other things. For me, I didn’t know the story, so with fresh eyes, I thought it was truly well-executed. Though, by others’ standards, maybe it won’t quite live up to its predecessors. Taking on a project of this nature, you can’t please everyone.

The movie starts off a little slow as our main character, detective Hercule Poirot (Kenneth Branagh), is being established. We get to see him solve a case, meet with some friends, and then eventually get a telegram requesting his help solving a case in London. His friend gets him the last room left on his train, the Orient Express.

The murder on the train doesn’t occur until almost the 40 minute mark, but then it significantly picks up the pace from there without losing its identity or tone established before.

Details pile up, but the dialogue is so fluid that it’s pretty easy to follow unless you’re not a fan of movies with a lot of talking.

Where it gets the most confusing, no matter what you like, is when the dialogue relies too heavily on the characters’ names to let us know what’s going on. There are about a dozen other passengers on the train that help make up this ensemble cast–which includes Josh Gad, Johnny Depp, and Judi Dench, to name a few–and it gets hard to keep them all straight at first. But eventually we catch on.

When watching a whodunit, there is always this inherent fear that the conclusion won’t be worth the time you spend waiting for it. However, this story is one of the most famous mysteries for a reason. It’s really clever. And as someone who has had no exposure to any Poirot in his life, this film has made me a fan. Now I want to see more. This is my own benchmark.

Twizard Rating: 98

Quick Movie Review: Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017)

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I sure wish writer-director Martin McDonagh would make more movies. He only has three, but they’re all highly regarded. His 2012 film, Seven Psychopaths, is one of my all-time favorites.

His newest movie revolves around Frances McDormand’s character, Mildred, renting three billboards outside of town in order to put a message on them criticizing the local police chief, Bill Willoughby (Woody Harrelson), for not solving the case of her daughter’s rape and murder.

This plays with our own gut reactions, as we quickly shake our heads assuming that this must be another result of a corrupt system. It’s not. Willoughby actually becomes the film’s best character, grounding it and providing the one true conscience amidst everyone else’s anger and lack of forgiveness. You could make a case that he’s the real protagonist.

Much like in Seven Psychopaths, Three Billboards is character driven, but in a way that incorporates their actions as well as their given depth. They all have faults and make terrible decisions, but their peer’s counter-decisions is what changes them–even if their peers aren’t doing great things either.

Most of the characters are neither good nor bad. Much like most of us, they have their vices AND their virtues. McDonagh could have followed this sentiment with showing them, at the end of the day, being completely changed in every aspect. But he doesn’t. Because it’s never that easy in real life. It’s never that black and white.

The key to fully appreciating this movie is knowing when Mildred is wrong even when it’s portrayed that she isn’t. She’s always talking all high and mighty. It’s like arguing with a guy who thinks that just because he’s yelling, using big words, and sounds intelligent that he’s right.

The reason why Three Billboards is such a brilliant film is because McDonagh understands film formula so much that he knows how to perfectly subvert it without alienating his audience. It allows so much more to happen in a smaller amount of time. Much like Hitchcock used to do, he prevents everything from being streamlined or foreseeable, while at the same time not letting it become jarring. The abrupt tonal shifts are completely intentional and meant to be a simile for real life.

Sam Rockwell plays an extreme cop who handles situations with violence because he thinks he can always get away with it. Rockwell’s mercurial demeanor that he brings to many of his characters fits so perfectly with McDonagh’s style–which draws comparisons to the Coen Brothers (but with more warmth and realistic endings).

McDonagh has a love for the politically incorrect. He likes to draw humor out of situations that shouldn’t ever be funny. You might not laugh at first if you’re in a room with others because you’re unsure if you’re supposed to. Often times the joke is surrounded by very serious context. It’s because he knows that the best humor is rarely in the well-scripted dialogue, but in scenarios that are true to life.

McDonagh does well to keep his own ideals and agendas out of the movie. Though he slips up once in allowing his anger to enter in through Mildred when she rants about how priests should have culpability like the Blood and Crip gangs have in Los Angeles. It’s an odd choice for a person of power in this industry to promote culpability laws in his movies–especially at a time like this in Hollywood.

With that said, Three Billboards is truly a brilliant film, and another reminder of why McDonagh should have more than just three movies.

Twizard Rating: 100

Quick Movie Review: Snow Day (2000)

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Originally intended to be a feature film version of the Nickelodeon show, The Adventures of Pete & Pete, Snow Day has its roots buried well.

Living in California, we never had snow days, but I was luckily able to live vicariously through this movie.

Snow Day follows a group of young kids who celebrate the year’s first school closure and try to stop the “evil” snow-plowman (Chris Elliott) from clearing the roads. Meanwhile, high schooler Hal (Mark Webber) tries to woo the popular Claire Bonner (Emmanuelle Chriqui) after she breaks up with her boyfriend. The film’s moniker is that anything can happen on a snow day.

Just like Pete & Pete, it’s way smarter than it needs to be or should be. Much like childhood, it’s often bittersweet. It glorifies the simple things because that’s what it’s like when we’re kids. These little pleasures are such a big deal to us, and it’s nice to see a movie that understands that.

For a children’s movie it’s fully aware of itself and stays entertaining throughout without having to throw in any cheap action sequences.

Though it’s still a product of its time, so it’s not without a couple of sappy moments–only one or two.

Hal’s dad is played by Chevy Chase, who’s a perfect fit. And Josh Peck is a wonder here in his debut. It’s apparent early on that he has great instincts. The cast is very good all around with some solid performances that really get the job done. There really aren’t any weaknesses.

Hal’s sister, Natalie, is the ring leader of the anti-plowman kids. A lesser film would have found cliches to fill out her relationship with her brother, but this one knows how to hit the nail perfectly on the head.

This movie just gets it, embellishing small moments and memories as we do in our minds when we’re young, and keeping them that way even into adulthood, so we can look back at them the best way possible. Snow Day basically magnifies that sentiment and perfectly empathizes with it by making the mundane magical.

Twizard Rating: 92

Quick Movie Review: Coco (2017)

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Pixar has never shied away from death in their movie, but Coco makes you more okay with it, touching upon something that is close to all of us.

Aside from the underwhelming–and long–Frozen short prefacing this film, Coco is easily the studio’s best release since 2010’s Toy Story 3, ending a long streak of sub-par entries.

Even the “beloved” Inside Out felt like somewhat of a forced concept which sounded better on paper.

For the first time we get a narrative that doesn’t just show us the way. It almost acts as a mystery of sorts, revealing itself slowly, keeping us at the edge of our seats. It’s a film that’s very aware of itself in that way, becoming one of the smartest animated movies you’ll ever see.

Coco follows a young boy, Miguel, who dreams of becoming a famous musician. Up until now, he’s had to practice in secret due to his family’s ban on music, which was implemented when his great-grandmother was a child. Her father was a guitar player who left her and her mother to pursue his dreams.

Miguel rebels against these restrictions. And after a series of events, he winds up in the Land of the Dead during Dia de Muertos–a Mexican holiday where the living celebrate their deceased ancestors by inviting them back to the Land of the Living for one night.

Just like most of their films, the comedy is never in your face, counting on the story to carry it–which should be most people’s preference.

But the humor in Coco is even more reserved than usual. The tone is a lot more serious. Perhaps due to its darker subject matter.

We also don’t really get the same kind of marketability as usual, which is interesting. Similar to Pixar’s Brave, it’s a movie that relies on its intricate plot rather than cheap laughs or unnecessary characters. It’s mature.

And the scenery and beautiful colors are enough for younger kids to latch on to, if nothing else. Pixar has created their most impressive world since Monsters, Inc. in 2001.

Coco does an excellent job painting the picture of how souls go back and forth between the Lands of the Dead and the Living. However, the film does have some porous logic involving the details of how a soul survives in the spirit world. Once a soul is forgotten about by the living, it ceases to exist in the Land of the Dead. We’re unsure what happens to them afterwards, which is a nice touch. But there’s also some overlap in how it happens to begin with. Maybe I’m just missing something.

In the end, those aren’t the details that matter as much to this film. It’s a near-perfect execution of a concept that’s yet to be touched by Pixar. Hopefully, this sparks another nice run from them. I miss the old Pixar.

Twizard Rating: 100

Quick Movie Review: Justice League (2017)

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2016’s Batman v Superman is possibly the most criticized film of the last 5–maybe 10–years, and director Zack Snyder knew he had some work to do on the highly-anticipated followup, Justice League–which was already in production by then.

The premise for Batman v Superman sounded cool on paper, but couldn’t possibly be executed without creating an unrealistic series of events. Coupled with Snyder’s tendency to take his films way too seriously, the project just didn’t work. Some would say it was a such a good concept that the filmmakers simply tried too hard to bring it to fruition. But it was inherently flawed from the start. Justice League has no excuse.

When a film desperately tries to fix what was wrong with its predecessor, becoming solely what it thinks people want, it’s a recipe for disaster. The tone has a tendency to get weird because it becomes a paint-by-numbers.

I’m not sure if any film in recent memory has had the amount of skepticism as Justice League prior to its release. Christopher Nolan has all but spoiled our expectations for another good Batman film. Honestly though, we’re not going to get that kind of movie again. And no one is even gong to try.

For those of you who don’t know, Justice League is a film which teams up several of the superheroes from DC Comics, including Batman, Wonder Woman, and Flash. Following the death of Superman, the world faces some alien invasion or something. I dunno. It’s unclear.

This villain is completely CGI and uncompelling, keeping us properly distanced from the situation entirely. Which is a trend throughout this movie. Depth is always either forced or nonexistent.

There’s a scene towards the beginning which has Lois Lane talking to Superman’s mother about how bad Lois misses Superman and griping about her job at the Daily Planet. But why do we even care?? And why is this scene even in the movie?? I immediately tried imagining this film being in a Marvel movie and realized that I couldn’t. It’s more like something out of Grey’s Anatomy.

It’s almost as though the filmmakers are unaware of which direction they’re supposed to be going (we’re with them). They’re so concerned with having cliched drama that they’re fishing for humanity amidst a world that lacks it.

I’ve heard people ask time and again why the Marvel Cinematic Universe has a better reputation than the DC Universe. Simply put, they’re better films. Marvel has snappy dialogue, good acting, and they’re a lot more fun. They’re smarter and more self aware. They feature camaraderie between characters. There’s banter and you actually feel like you’re in on some cool exclusive club.

DC lacks personability. They’re also more concerned with finding actors who look the part rather than good charismatic talents. Marvel has Robert Downey Jr., Samuel L. Jackson, and Chris Hemsworth. DC has Ben Affleck and a bunch of previously unknown actors.

But boy, does it try to be charismatic with Justice League.

Just like the Wonder Woman movie, Justice League relies on one character to give it most of its levity–in this case, Ezra Miller as Flash. That’s not how this works. It’s like when Lil Wayne thought he could make a rock album simply by having all of his songs be about teenage angst. Just like how that was a misperception of the genre, this is a sore misunderstanding of how movies get to be funny and enjoyable.

The humor is even more cringy because you know why it’s there. I’d rather have two really good jokes than fifty throwaway ones. Especially jokes that are derivative and uninspired. The worst is when Batman (Affleck) tries to get in on the action with his modern straight-man delivery. It’s so odd hearing Batman try to be funny with the bat suit on. To the point where it feels like Affleck is actually performing a parody of Batman instead.

The action is much of the same as its predecessor–mostly boring and confusing. There’s a true sense of contrived intensity.

Batman v Superman had one thing going for it: The mystique of what’s to come. It teases us with cryptic introductions to characters possibly featured in the future (Wonder Woman, Flash, Aquaman). Of those, we get one origins story–this year’s Wonder Woman. As for the others–they’re all introduced here.

I kinda get why they rushed past all the other origins movies. The studio probably knew that if they didn’t get straight to this film then it may not have gotten made at all.

But there’s no true establishment of these characters in this movie either. If I was sitting in the theater and had no idea who Aquaman was, I wouldn’t care that he’s in this movie because they make no attempt to make you care. i’m not even sure they mention Flash by name.

DC films have a long way to go if they want to compete with Marvel. This year’s Wonder Woman was good. But it also had the luxury of having a different director and not suffering from panicky reshoots following the bombing of Batman v Superman.

There will be people who like Justice League. There are also people who like unoriginal rom-coms that merely go through the motions. Not everyone needs the movie to actually be good.

At first glance, Justice League is better than Batman v Superman. It makes all the obligatory changes. However, it also loses its identity in the process. It doesn’t seem possible, but in reality, Justice League is actually much worse. It’s a film of corrections–empty and uninspired ones. It tries to be self-aware, but ends up being the opposite. I’d be curious to see what Snyder would’ve done with the film if he hadn’t been merely trying to fix what was wrong with the first one. It may not have been great, but at least it would’ve been what he wanted from the beginning. And at least it would’ve been true to itself. Maybe then it would’ve been better.

Twizard Rating: 59

Quick Movie Review: Rocky V (1990)

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So apparently Rocky V is considered the worst in the franchise. I’m not sure why. To be honest, the things people say it does wrong Rocky films have been doing since the beginning. Like contrived plot points, or innocuous plot holes, or tragic things happening due to Rocky’s lack of self-awareness. Maybe it’s just that now people are finally noticing it. But truthfully, I enjoyed it because it’s NOT like all the others.

Released in 1990, it’s perhaps the smartest Rocky film up to this point. The depth has never been more nuanced than it is here. It’s deep without being corny. Deeper than the others because it doesn’t try too hard to be. It finally breaks away from the tired formula, so for once you’re not sure where the story’s going.

Amidst all the improvements, it still has the feel of a Rocky movie, doing well to go along with the trend of each film being a different phase in the boxer’s life. Immediately after the bout with Ivan Drago from the previous film, Rocky is suffering some noticeable brain damage. A Don King parody, promoter George Washington Duke, is trying to get him back into the ring for a title fight. But Rocky keeps deflecting, finally retiring from the sport.

A young, promising fighter, Tommy Gunn, approaches Rocky in hopes that the former boxer will coach him so he can get to the championship level. Tensions rise when Rocky’s own 14 year old son, Robert, is getting less and less attention from his father during a time when he should be retired and at home with his family. Robert feels like he’s being replaced by Tommy and what results is an actual realistic depiction of what would happen between father and son.

Something about this subplot hits home for any guy. Whether it’s happened to you or not, you truly feel for Robert. However, it’s not presented in a cliched fashion. It’s not as black and white as most movies would have made it be. Subtly, we also realize that his dad isn’t as bad as he could be, either.

This installment has a brilliant way of connecting everything inside of itself. Of the original 5 films, this one has, by far, the best script. The narrative, alone, is an obvious improvement from its two predecessors at least. Although it’s a little longer, it’s a lot more fluid in its storytelling.

Sylvester Stallone does his best job not overacting in the title role–something he tends to do intermittently throughout this series. He’s getting better.

Unlike the past films, the events in this one are a direct result of realistic situations Rocky has been put in. If anything, Rocky seems to have actual sincere motives this time. Ones that we can actually relate to or empathize with. For once, Rocky seems to have his back against the wall the way it should have felt–and wanted to be–in previous films. And no matter what your opinion is on these films up to this point, Rocky V is the perfect bookend to the original quintilogy.

Twizard Rating: 92

Quick Movie Review: Goodbye Christopher Robin (2017)

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As the credits roll, my wife turns and asks me the obligatory, “Did you like it?” All I can say is, “It’s a beautiful film.”

And it is. Goodbye Christopher Robin is about many things, but, at the same time, just one thing, as it’s all tied together perfectly. It’s about living in the moment and appreciating things as they happen. I know, you’re thinking that this theme has been done a million times. But I assure you, never like this. Not with these dynamics. And that’s always the key to a movie going from good to great.

The film tells the story of how Winnie the Pooh by A.A. Milne came to be. It’s told from the perspective of Milne, played by Domhnall Gleeson, but also particularly from that of his six year old son, Christopher Robin Milne (Will Tilston).

It takes place in England and bridges the gap between both World Wars, showing some before and after for perspective. The father suffers from terrible post traumatic stress disorder from World War I and it affects his writing. He and his family move out of London to the countryside so he can recover. He ends up not writing much there, either–instead, playing with his son. The adventures they go on in the woods surrounding their property inspire in Milne the concept for Winnie the Pooh. His anxiety seems to go away once the fictional bear comes into the picture. And it seems to have the same effect on the rest of the country.

Milne’s wife, Daphne, is played by Margot Robbie in perhaps her most impressive performance yet. Daphne acts selfishly most of the time. Instead of encouraging her husband’s creativity for his own sanity, she does it for herself. So she can have a better life. She punishes him for his own writer’s block. Robbie plays an unlikable woman so well. But instead of putting her into a specific character archetype, the filmmakers make her much more complex than that. She resents her son for the pain he caused her at birth, but at other times displays a genuine sense of love for him. We feel it, but we also see through her eyes, recognizing resentment still in there, deep down.

And that complexity goes for the rest of the film. Nothing is so outrightly obvious. Even the dialogue is free of proverbs and truisms. And the facial expressions are subtly expository. It’s a film that trusts its audience. The nuances run deep. You can watch it again and have the same takeaway, yet notice the different ways its depicted.

A lesser film would have been about how the real life Christopher Robin’s parents were bad parents. But that would be too easy. There is no black and white. His parents are less than decent most of the time, sure, but there’s an awareness of it–at least by his father. And at times it’s like he’s trying to fight it, but just can’t. He goes along with his wife in order to gain her approval.

Gleeson lets you into his psyche every step of the way without holding your hand through it. You have to look carefully at times, but it’s always there.

Director Simon Curtis seamlessly connects the movie’s several interwoven themes. The effects of war, being a child, unintentional fame, loss, regret–or lack thereof.

This film connects with our emotions in a way that most other films don’t. Or can’t. It doesn’t use cheap techniques or cliched scenarios. It’s honest and real. Like life. Maybe even a little more than that.

Twizard Rating: 100