For the record, this not a sponsored article, but MoviePass, if you’re out there…
In all seriousness though, thanks to Moviepass I have gotten a chance to watch so many movies that I would have otherwise waited to watch well after they left theaters, and since I’m catching so many movies in the theater on a weekly basis I figured, I should talk about them. Afterall, there really aren’t enough people doing that these days.
Murder on The Orient Express
A movie has come out that no one has seen and I must talk about it. Why? Because I’m Chris Williams, and I’m probably the greatest movie reviewer in the world… Nah, I’m just kidding. Murder on The Orient Express has so many things going for it, great cast, great director, great source material, but yet it still falls short of being a great movie.
Based off the Agatha Christie novel of the same name, Director Kenneth Branagh, the man that brought us Thor, as well as the amazing 1996 Hamlet, presents a beautiful film that’s filled with a wonderful cast of characters played by a wonderful cast. Unfortunately, and perhaps this is more the fault of the book and not the filmmaker, (I wouldn’t know, I haven’t read it. Sorry, I’m not a reader. I’m a millenial.) there are small stretches throughout the film that cause the film’s momentum to, dare I say, de-rail. The opening of the film is very quick and keeps the movie on a constant speed. Everything feels smart and stylish, but as we near the big finish of the story, certain story plots and characters feel uneeded for the overall story that’s being told.
I’m sure there are some… Christie-heads, that would declare blasphemy to even suggest that parts of the book be cut out or trimmed, but in the case of this film, I do think at the very least, combining certain characters and shortening up the cast would have gone a long way in serving this film for the better. Ultimately though, because of these un-needed story elements, as well as the answer of “who done it” that kind of takes away the fun of rewatching films like this, what I felt like I was left with was a good movie that had all the potential to be great, but ultimately missed the mark by just a hair.
7.75/10 (Blockbuster Rental)
Happy Death Day
What happens when you take the writer of the 90’s XMEN cartoon show and hand his script over to the director of Scouts Guide to The Zombie Apocolypse? You end up with Happy Death Day, a modern day horror movie that takes the dark comedy of a movie like Scream and combines it with the story of Groundhog’s Day. In other words, it’s a horror movie that we don’t deserve. It has no right to be this good.
Comparing this movie to Scream and Groundhog’s Day is high praise but that doesn’t mean it’s without fault. While the movie does a great job of presenting annoying college kids, because it uses the repetitive story structure of Groundhog’s Day, I didn’t particularly want to continue revisiting these characters. And while the overall character arch for the film’s main character is done really well, she’s such an awful person at the beginning of the movie, that the introduction of the film can be a tough sit.
To end this on a high note though, because I do strongly recommend this film to horror fans looking for a good time, if you’re able to make it through that opening, you will find yourself changing how you think. At the start of the movie, I couldn’t wait to see our main character die over and over and over, but by the end of the movie, and full credit to actress Jessica Rothe for pulling this off, I was more than ready to declare her America’s sweetheart and was more than happy to cheer her on as she tried to unravel the mystery of who her killer is… also, the reveal of the killer is really smart and well done.
8/10 (Really, Really, Really Good)
Well, that’s it’s for this week’s movie review round up. Make sure you come back next week when I talk about… Justice League and A Bad Mom’s Christmas. Oh my god.