4 Stars Movies

The Eyes of Tammy Faye (2021)

It seems worth mentioning that anyone’s opinion of a biopic will definitely depend a lot on how well that person knows the source material. The more one knows, the higher the expectations.

To put it candidly, I knew virtually nothing of Tammy Faye Baker, other that she, along with her husband, was one of the more popular televangelists of the 1970s and 1980s (just before my time). At many points of The Eyes of Tammy Faye (based off of a documentary from 2000 of the same name), I realized they were the reason I would see other televangelists as a kid when I would be flipping through channels early Sunday mornings (paving the way for the likes of Joel Osteen).

1 1/2 Stars Movies

Dear Evan Hansen (2021)

(Not long into Dear Evan Hansen, I realized the best audience I could write to would be myself as a High School Senior.)

Dear Mark A. Lester (circa 2005),

3 Stars Movies

Cry Macho (2021)

This truly seems like uncharted territory. I mean, when was the last time you saw a movie where a nonagenarian directs themselves in the lead role?

While I admit to not seeing all of his films (both in front of and behind the camera), I have seen more than enough to know that Clint Eastwood has long since made his mark not only as cinematic legend, but an American relic. Regardless of what age he is in the movies, he still plays the no-nonsense, hard lined tough guy as good as anyone ever has. No one else ever looked more terrifying when holding a gun.

2 1/2 Stars Movies

Malignant (2021)

It seems that director James Wan is indeed who one should go to if you want to make a horror movie.

Admittedly, this is a director that, although talented, is not one I am familiar with. I have only seen three of his previous films (two of which, Mortal Kombat and The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me do it, came out earlier this year), but am able to recognize his influence on 21st century horror films, thanks to movies like Saw (2004), Insidious (2010), and Insidious: Chapter 2 (2013).

1 Star Movies

Cinderella (2021)

If your movie is based on the world’s most popular fairy tale, then it can be understandable why you would want to put a twist or two on the story. Whether it was told by Disney (animated or live-action) or the lead was either Hilary Duff or the 90s pop star Brandy, Cinderella was always about a story enchanting girls and  young women with the dream that they would one day  be swept off their feet by that special someone. The newest version of Cinderella likes to add on that Ella can be her own woman and does not need a man to have her dreams come true. This of course is not a problem, but it was never what the source material was about.

They may as well have called this CRINGErella.

3 1/2 Stars Movies

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021)

As the second film of the MCU’s Phase 4, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings also holds the distinction of being the first true origin story film of the MCU since 2019’s Captain Marvel.

Of course, one could argue that Black Widow was also an origin story, but we have seen Natasha since 2010’s Iron Man 2. Shang-Chi is a character we had no interaction with until now. Like a good amount of the films in the series, it showcases a character that only true comic book fans know something about (I can still remember when non fanboys like myself needed the movies to introduce the likes of the Guardians of the Galaxy, Thanos, Black Panther, and even Iron Man.)