Terrence Malick is a fascinating oddity of cinema. After making two highly acclaimed features in the 1970s, he disappeared for two decades before returning sporadically until the 2010s, when he suddenly completed six features at a rapid-fire pace. This sudden burst of productivity did have a negative effect however. When a new Malick film was reviewed every handful of years, his visionary filmmaking style was exciting. However, getting a new one every year makes the…
By: Jessica Goddard Full disclosure: I am bad at watching war movies. I watch war movies out of some (likely misdirected) sense of duty – if actual human beings lived these horrors, I should be able to stomach cinematic recreations of them, is my thinking. But, I find it very hard to watch people die (which I’ve chosen to attribute to a smug overabundance of empathy) even if it’s only a performance. For this reason,…
Director Alejandro Landes takes viewers on an incredible journey with Monos, a Columbian drama about the lives of teenage soldiers.
Russian wartime blockbuster T-34 was a hit in its native land. And while it’s receiving a softer release in North America, it deserves to be sought out and seen by movie goers looking for a good action movie.
The synopsis of Blackbear vaguely reminds one of the 2006 film Annapolis–a film that, if you recall (and if so, good for you), was marketed as a recruit training film in the vein of A Gentleman and an Officer, but was actually, secretly, a boxing film. Blackbear is similar: it starts off as a war film, with the two central characters as captives by ISIS, only to quickly become a boxing film within the film’s…
Jerry G. Angelo wears many hats in American Warfighter. Not only did he direct the film and write the original screenplay, but he also performs as Rusty “Wolfman” Wittenburg, a Navy SEAL haunted by his experiences of battle. I wish I could say that Angelo’s efforts have resulted in an impressive film, but the truth is that American Warfighter isn’t just lackluster, it’s downright bad.
For Sama (DIR. Waad al-Kateab, Edward Watts) For Sama is one of the heaviest documentaries I’ve ever seen – a true battle about staying hopeful in hopeless circumstances.
It’s been quite some time since I’ve seen someone tell a story as passionately as Max Martini does in SGT. Will Gardner. His activism against the mistreatment of war veterans rings sincerely through the writing and direction of his first solo effort as a filmmaker, and he wears his heart on his sleeve as the title character. The film itself is imperfect, but my admiration towards Martini helped me be forgiving.
A J.J. Abrams production is like the latest hipster eatery: they take a lot of effort to put together and people apparently like them, but once you have experienced one, it becomes apparent just how incredibly overrated they are. This is why I’m always so wary of these productions, and why his latest produced feature has been such a surprise – Overlord, directed by Julius Avery, is actually enjoyable!
Overlord (DIR. Julius Avery) American soldiers are dropped into German-occupied France and need to prepare for the D-Day invasion, but they find that the Germans are involved in some messed-up stuff.