Joel has written 75 reviews for films rated ★★½ .

  • Seberg

    Seberg

    ★★½

    Seberg is a Kristen Stewart led film as French actress Jean Seberg who becomes a target of the FBI when she supports the Civil Right movement during the 60s and while Stewart is great in her role, the story just never goes anywhere worthy of that performance and lacks depth as it moves through the events without much to say about it. Anthony Mackie and Zazie Beetz also turn in great performance as well as Jack O Connell who might…

  • Downhill

    Downhill

    ★★½

    Downhill is an American remake of 2014's Force Majeure that is a story about a man(Will Ferrell) that abandons his family during an avalanche scare and must deal with repercussions of his actions. While Force Majeure is a cerebral look at how relationships can change based on how actions can be perceived with drama pushes the story forward, Downhill is another Ferrell vehicle that tries its best to pull comedy out of the situation but ends up being cringeworthy in…

  • The Last Full Measure

    The Last Full Measure

    ★★½

    The Last Full Measure is a war film in the same vein as Born On The Fourth Of July but not as effective or memorable as its predecessor. A true story about a Vietnam war hero's friend trying to obtain a posthumous Medal Of Honor for his courage in Vietnam and the interview to make that happen does have some powerful scenes involving a great cast comprising of Samuel L Jackson, Ed Harris, William Hurt, Peter Fonda(in his final onscreen…

  • Sonic the Hedgehog

    Sonic the Hedgehog

    ★★½

    Sonic The Hedgehog is a fun film with this over the top Jim Carrey performance(that make him so great throughout the years) and see him chew all the scenery was just a blast but the movie feels disjointed, the humor felt dated and also geared to a much younger audience(as it should have been) but it missed the older audience that helped build the brand of the Sega product that debuted back in 1991 and often didn't have the energy…

  • Emma.

    Emma.

    ★★½

    Emma is yet another adaptation of the Jane Austen classic novel and while it may be the closest to the source material, It continues to be a hard story to adapt because it’s hard to really invest in Emma as the central character because of how crass and self centered she comes off onscreen despite the great acting Anya Taylor-Joy displays in the role.
    The cast works well off her but many get lost in the shuffle or feel more…

  • Bloodshot

    Bloodshot

    ★★½

    Who knew this would be my last theater experience for months now that this thing has shut everything down. 
    Bloodshot as whole is an okay action movie that we’ve become familiar with as it comes to Vin Diesel On par with his stuff outside of Fast and Furious and MCU like XXX and Riddick. Bloodshot plays to his acting strengths and does it best to show him as the powerhouse letting him having these cool action scenes that are quite…

  • Roman J. Israel, Esq.

    Roman J. Israel, Esq.

    ★★½

    Dan Gilroy's follow up to 2014's Nightcrawler, Roman J. Israel is the story of the titular character, played by Denzel Washington, a defense attorney working in the civil rights field whose life is upended by the death of his mentor and one bad decision that catapults him into a world he's not ready for.
    Denzel Washington is one of those actors who give a great performance in almost every film they're in, but many of the character choices the story…

  • Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets

    Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets

    ★★½

    The new Luc Besson sci-fi film that is the definition of style over substance. The visuals are amazing and the worlds show here are an incredible sight to behold(pushing the limit of what CGI and cinematography can achieve) and every world feels distinct and fleshed out.
    On top of that, some of the action sequences are really gripping (especially an opening scene in a market that only takes place in the digital realm that definitely borrowed its visual feel from…

  • The Hero

    The Hero

    ★★½

    The Hero(aka the Sam Elliot show) is the story of Lee Hayden(Elliot) who is an aging actor know for great Western and while he's stayed active, he feels unfulfilled as he's reaching the end of his career and that's where the film picks up. Sam Elliot's performance feels so honest because it feels like he's just being himself and even infusing a lot of truth from his actual career into the role(he's been a bit character and a TV actor…

  • Maudie

    Maudie

    ★★½

    A snapshot of the life of a Canadian painter(Sally Hawkins) dealing with arthritis who takes a job as a live in housekeeper of a fisherman(Ethan Hawke) and the story follows how they deal with each other.
    Hawkins is a vision as Maud and she never really overplays her condition but really makes her condition intertwine with her personality and brings out a lot of heart from every scene. Ethan Hawke is also masterful in his performance even at time he…

  • The Little Hours

    The Little Hours

    ★★½

    The Little Hours is a raunchy comedy set in a convent that while having some fun performances and decent amount of laughs, often feels raunchy just to feel edgy and not really to help the narrative which felt paper thin.
    The nuns(played by Audrey Plaza, Alison Brie and Kate Micucci) are the driving force of the film and bring most of the convincing comedy. Plaza is playing the role of snarky and often cruel loner that she has in most…

  • Before I Fall

    Before I Fall

    ★★½

    Before I Fall is essentially teenage Groundhog's Day with Samantha(Zoey Deutch) reliving the same day over and over again after a pivotal event and trying to learn how to break the cycle. Unlike Groundhog's Day, Before I Fall gets the comedy out of the way rather quickly(a few moments in the early going)to deliver more teenage drama related to cliches, dating and angst teenage drama with Samantha spending much of the running time trying to figure out who she is…