Lucy in the Sky (2019)

"Lucy in the Sky" is a manifestation of Newton's Law of Gravity. It starts with Natalie Portman's Lucy up in space. "Just a few more minutes" she says like a kid on the playground. She's floating through  ...

Ad Astra (2019)

Who could have guessed that the race for best actor at the Oscars would be between Brad Pitt and Brad Pitt? As unlikely as it might sound, it's true. The only thing this 55 year old performer can't seem  ...

The Goldfinch (2019)

Life can be more than ups and downs, as "The Goldfinch" argues, it can be just downs. This drama/comedy means to create empathy in audiences by showing them so many depressing images that sympathy is the only  ...

It Chapter Two (2019)

Sorry to pop your balloon, but "It Chapter Two" is a mess. The second chapter in the clown saga feels as long as Stephen Kings' 1,138 page novel (it's nearly 3 hours!), and twice as bleak. It's  ...

Tigers Are Not Afraid (2017)

Issa Lopez was an archaeologist before she was a filmmaker, and it's clear she took notes. Her latest, "Tigers Are Not Afraid," is about digging up the past to make sense of the present. It's a premise that fits  ...

Good Boys (2019)

The most obvious thing that "Good Boys" is missing is calmness. Also, bleakness and self-seriousness. In other words, it's tremendous fun, and none of the things that have plagued raunchy comedies this summer season. Just when  ...

The Nightingale (2019)

Jennifer Kent's sophomore feature--her last film was the terrifically taught "Babadook"-- opens with a close-up. If you look closely, it's a face on the verge of giving up. The time is the 19th century. The place  ...

Fast and Furious Presents: Hobbes and Shaw (2019)

"Fast and Furious Presents: Hobbes and Shaw" is as overwrought as its title. It's also overlong, overblown and over-the-top. That's nothing new for a series known for its over-the-topness. Explosions, car chases and exploding car  ...

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (2019)

Remember when actors sold movies? Quentin Tarantino does. The director's ninth feature--presumably his second to last-- is a love poem of that era told on a magnificent scale. The time is 1969. The place is Hollywood.  ...

The Art of Self-Defense (2019)

"The Art of Self Defense" is a gender case studies that doesn't feel like homework. In other words, your psychology 101 professor would hate it, and you're bound to love it. It's a haunting, evasive and  ...