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Articles by Addison Wylie

Reviews

The Incredible Burt Wonderstone

By: Addison Wylie When director Don Scardino and his screenwriting duo Jonathan Goldstein and John Francis Daley  are nailing punchlines and taking cracks at old magic vs. new magic, inflated egos, and stage show cheesiness, The Incredible Burt Wonderstone lifts off. Add the timing and delivery from Steve Carell and Jim Carrey – two comically trained actors – and the film is a delight to watch. However, Goldstein and Daley take a few screenwriting turns…

Reviews

Side Effects

By: Addison Wylie Steven Soderbergh’s alleged “last movie” Side Effects is one half murder mystery and another half docudrama about the pharmaceutical industry. It only truly excels at being one of these, but the film is interesting nonetheless from start to finish. Emily Taylor, an often distraught wife played by Rooney Mara, greets her hubby (played by Channing Tatum) after he’s been incarcerated for a lengthy prison term. Life is seemingly back to normal, but…

Reviews

21 & Over

By: Addison Wylie For a comedy about two buds who take their birthday boy pal on the night of his life filled with partying, copious amounts of booze, and flirtatious girls, I expected 21 & Over to be a somewhat obnoxious ride through unsupervised adolescence with some cheap shots that wouldn’t have the film feeling as if it was devoid of all laughs. I’m glad to report that my expectations were wrong. 21 & Over…

Reviews

The ABC’s of Death

By: Addison Wylie It’s almost inevitable to go into The ABC’s of Death with leery reservations. The anthology’s premise involves moviegoers sitting through 24 horror short films – each one involving a letter of the alphabet tying itself to the short’s climactic gruesome activity. One immediate question pops to mind upon hearing this pitch: are audience members going to be too distracted from watching the movie by counting down each letter of the alphabet? Will we…

Reviews

Dark Skies

By: Addison Wylie Dark Skies wants its moviegoers to leave slightly chilled, but, instead we leave feeling cold. As the credit crawl began and the lights dimmed back on, you could feel the waft from everyone’s shoulders shrugging as they huffed out of the theatre. The unenthused reaction isn’t because Dark Skies is a bad movie, but because we don’t like seeing something that had so much potential settle with being “just ok”. One would…

Reviews

Safe Haven

By: Addison Wylie It’s been only a couple of hours since my screening of the latest Nicholas Sparks movie adaptation, and I’m still having difficulty figuring out how to critique it without giving away any spoilers or crucial plot points. Safe Haven may not look like the type of movie that warrants a cautious review, but it’s a twisty film that can be uncovered by the simple slip of a certain character’s name. The first…

Reviews

The Oogieloves in the Big Balloon Adventure

“Do toddlers have standards for entertainment?” I found myself asking that a lot during The Oogieloves in the Big Balloon Adventure, as I was watching what the filmmakers behind the film thought they could serve to children. Judging by box office numbers, life-size colourful creatures jiggling around and trying to find magic balloons for a surprise party for their talking pillow proves kids do; as well as parents paying the price of admission. The film…

Reviews

The Ambassador

By: Addison Wylie It’s tricky to review The Ambassador, because no matter how many flaws I name, it’ll all seem like small potatoes for Danish journalist/filmmaker Mads Brügger. The doc follows Brügger as he pulls off an enormous and dangerous undercover endeavour – to pose as a Liberian diplomat in order to get his hands on blood diamonds from mines with illegal protocols. The documentary has an unbelievably risky premise and a compelling trailer, but…

Reviews

A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III

By: Addison Wylie A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III feels like it’s been directed by two people. It hasn’t. Roman Coppola is the lone director, as well as the lone screenwriter. But, it has that feeling because it very much feels like two movies have been fused together – a straight-forward break-up movie with a sitcom mentality and a heartfelt hyperactive ode to art deco and 70’s art and fashion. We start with…

Reviews

Warm Bodies

By: Addison Wylie I’ve underestimated filmmaker Jonathan Levine. When he first debuted with The Wackness, he had proven to have a great eye for detail in his mid-90’s settings but nothing else more. I’ll eat my fair share of crow because with 50/50 and now with his zom-com Warm Bodies, he has a resumé that gives plenty of evidence that he realizes how to recognize humanity and what makes us tick. It’s a skill that makes his characters more than just “characters”. He challenges himself with Warm Bodies; what better…