Watching this, I laughed every time the kingdom of Thrace was mentioned, thinking of Zero Mostel’s famous movie gag line (“He raped Thrace thrice?”). And when an entire army starts chanting the hero’s name (“Hercules! Hercules!”) I laughed thinking of Eddie Murphy in THE NUTTY PROFESSOR. But laughing didn’t spoil anything, because the movie itself … Continue reading HERCULES


On the heels of her alien-with-an-attitude snorefest UNDER THE SKIN, ScarJo’s back with a new piece of sci-fi hokum. What starts out suggesting it might take be like Cliff Robertson’s CHARLY reimagined as a thriller instead turns Johansson into a shoot-em-up action heroine whose brain power has exploded after ingestion of a super-drug. This gives … Continue reading LUCY


With a budget only slightly higher than the first picture (and even that less than $10M) what’s still missing is a sense of national anarchy — that this orgiastic violence is taking place throughout the nation, in ways perhaps specific to each region. But that’s to unfairly criticize the movie for what it might have … Continue reading THE PURGE: ANARCHY


When an attempt to combat global warming accidentally leads to a deep freeze that kills virtually all life on earth, the remnants of humanity live on an enormous train in a well-demarcated, military-enforced division between the 99 percent, including our hero rebels, and the privileged class. The poor and downtrodden ride in the rear cars, … Continue reading SNOWPIERCER


This completes a hat trick for the hugely talented director Matt Reeves, a 1-2-3 punch from CLOVERFIELD to LET ME IN and now the second installment of the latest APES reboot. Extravagantly sentimental, DAWN’s triumph is to successfully give so many of the animals not just physical identifiers (one has a triple scratch, another a … Continue reading DAWN OF THE PLANET OF THE APES


Deliver us from claptrap is more like it. A lame-o entry in the Possession/Exorcism subcategory, it brings no new thrills to the screen. The story inches forward without anticipation and with no genuine scares or even creepy atmosphere. Just stuff you’ve seen before. Bumps in the cellar. A devil voice coming out of a little … Continue reading DELIVER US FROM EVIL


Alternate title: THE POSTMAN NEVER RINGS TWICE For THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO Whose BODY HEAT Attracts STRANGERS ON A TRAIN. This noir wannabe is an indie thriller that I had hoped would be a giddy surprise (the movie showed up out of nowhere; there was one other person in the theater) along the … Continue reading THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN