Joel has written 7 reviews for films rated ★★★ during 2020.

  • Bad Boys for Life

    Bad Boys for Life

    ★★★

    Bad Boys For Life brought Will Smith & Martin Lawrence back to a franchise that hadn't been visited since 2003 and it picks up right where the franchise left off (except for Bilall Fallah and Adil El Arbi replacing Michael Bay in the director's chair) and this continues to be a dependable franchise.
    The storyline continues to be cliche cop action movie and is predictable in where the story will go (as was its predecessors) but Smith and Lawrence continue this…

  • Color Out of Space

    Color Out of Space

    ★★★

    Richard Stanley returns to the director chair after mostly been absent since the 1996 disaster that was the Island of Dr Moreau( that he was fired from) to give us this bonkers film based on the works of H.P. Lovecraft and with another insane performance from Nicolas Cage(reminiscent of his recent performances in Mom & Dad and Mandy)  and delivers the most loyal to Lovecraft adaptation in terms of feel and story direction. Some may not love where the story goes…

  • The Call of the Wild

    The Call of the Wild

    ★★★

    The Call of the Wild is a Chris Sanders directed film based on the 1903 Jack London novel that yes, does have a CGI dog center stage in Buck, a St Bernard that is stolen from a home and goes on a journey to find where he belongs. 
    While I knew many that were put off by the CGI dog, I got over it quickly and got invested in Buck’s plight and easily became immersed in the story as Buck…

  • Gretel & Hansel

    Gretel & Hansel

    ★★★

    This classic story of Hansel&Gretel told more from the standpoint that Gretel is the stronger of the duo and its her story with Hansel being the one having to rely on her which was definitely a strength of the film.
    The amazing visuals and cinematography just made the fairy tale come to life in this unique dark way that really help bring out the horror and tension in all of the scenes.
    The acting is also really good with Sophia…

  • Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn)

    Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn)

    ★★★

    Birds Of Prey is a fun film with a great performance by Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn that is far superior to 2016's Suicide Squad but this should have been billed as a Harley Quinn film because that what it is for like 90% of the film and may have helped out with the marketing campaign as the original title was way too long and misleading(with many theaters eventually changing the name to garner more fan interest).
    The action is…

  • The Photograph

    The Photograph

    ★★★

    Photograph is a charming romance film that parallels and contrasts these two relationships through time with these great performances by Issa Rae and LaKeith Stanfield who have this chemistry that works so well but the way the two stories meld together throughout the film ends up being fairly clunky and often predictable in execution.
    The strength of The Photograph is just how Rae and Stanfield just are able to work so well off each other with each not only having…

  • The Assistant

    The Assistant

    ★★★

    The dramatization of these real life situations of these high powered executives is definitely relevant in this #metoo movement time where living through and there is portions of this film that were shocking, heartbreaking and quite potent.
    Helping all these moments strike their mark was the tremendous performance from Julia Gardner who was the driving force of most of this film as often she is the only person on screen or is working with a handful of actors that really…