I’ve been MIA for about a month now. I took a vacation, interviewed for a new job, got the job, and opened the local pool in town for my summer job. I’ve watched a fair amount of movies but just haven’t had time to write or record anything in the past month or so. Here’s a blitz review package of everything I’ve seen since Wayne’s World back in May.
- Star Wars: The Phantom Menace
- I unapologetically love this movie and have ever since I was a kid. I love the original trilogy just as much as any other Star Wars fan, but the prequel trilogy made me appreciate how cool it could be. I did go through a period of time in my early to mid-teenage years where I thought that Star Wars was lame, but by the time I was 19, I was fully re-indoctrinated (Thanks r/prequelmemes) with a large Jedi Order tattoo on my back left shoulder. As cool as Luke and Darth Vader are, it is Ewan McGregor’s Obi-Wan that made me want to be a Jedi when I was a kid. It is by no means a perfect movie and has plenty of flaws like the rest of the movies in the series, but it is fun and made with love. For that, The Phantom Menace clocks in at an 89/100.
- Star Wars: Attack of The Clones
- Growing up, I thought that Attack of The Clones was the worst movie in the then 6 movie series. I have different opinions now and I’m not going to be revisionist about my feelings towards this movie, but I definitely think I was too harsh on it growing up. Having experienced the joys of The Clone Wars tv show and the fact that the whole thing exists because of what was probably a throwaway line in the OT, I have really come around on episode 2. 86/100.
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars
- The Clone Wars came out in the period of time when I thought that Star Wars was lame and so I never saw this movie in theaters or watched the show when it was originally airing. It wasn’t until the seventh season was announced for Disney+ that I gave it a shot and all I can say is “wow”. Creating an experimental 3D animated Star Wars tale is an incredibly tall order and to do it within the constraints of the mythical Clone Wars just makes it that much harder. 86/100.
- Top Gun
- I definitely felt the need for speed after watching Top Gun. I had never seen this particular advertisement for the United States Armed Forces, but it did make me feel incredibly patriotic. It’s chock full of 80s goodness with an all-star cast of Tom Cruise and Val Kilmer duking it out in high-powered, super sleek jets. 82/100.
- Top Gun: Maverick
- The past decade has shown that nostalgia is a hell of a drug and that rebooting or refreshing a long-dormant IP is a risky idea. There are a few good ones (TRON: Legaccy) and a lot of bad ones (looking at you Jurassic World: Dominion). Top Gun: Maverick improves on the original in every meaningful way and replicates what made it so special. Joseph Kosinski is making a name for himself as the go-to guy for extremely polished and carefully crafted follow-ups that are better than the original. 88/100
- The Great Gatsby
- This incredibly stylized retelling of the great American novel from Baz Luhrman stars Leonardo DiCaprio, Tobey Maguire, Carey Mulligan, and Joel Edgerton. I personally did not enjoy reading The Great Gatsby in American Lit class as a sophomore and I didn’t really enjoy this movie. It wasn’t just the story, it was the way that Luhrman presented it. The stylization was just so distracting and the scoring was very jarring. 68/100
- Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore
- Like many fans of Harry Potter, I had very low hopes when this five-part series was announced. It was not something that I remember anybody asking for and while the concept originally sounded like magical Pokemon, it has devolved so to speak into nothing more than backstory filler for Dumbledore. Coupled with the appalling opinions of JK Rowling, her tarnished legacy, and recasting Johnny Depp in a knee-jerk reaction, I have a hard time enjoying this franchise. It is hollow, emotionless, and cheap. 74/100.
And that’s it. Those are all the movies I’ve watched in the past month. Next up are Lightyear, Jurassic World, Nope, and Men. I’ve also been watching Moon Knight, Kenobi, and Stranger Things 4 and I hope to write about them soon.