The Early Reviews For Horror Flick ‘The Black Phone’ Are Pretty Positive

If you’re a horror fan, chances are you’ve seen the trailer for the Ethan Hawke-starring film, The Black Phone.

The trailer looks pretty damn creepy, and the hype for this movie has been building ever since it was delayed due to COVID-19. Well, the movie is finally hitting theaters this weekend, which means the early reviews are being released this week.

And so far, they’re pretty dang positive. It currently sits at an impressive 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes with nearly 30 reviews counted. It has a 68 on Metacritic, but only eight reviews have been counted.

The Hollywood Reporter’s John DeFore wrote:

The Black Phone expands on a short story in ways that feel very true to the source material while significantly enhancing its theatrical appeal. It was never in doubt that this would be a more commercial outing than the deeply odd (but effective, in its way) 2013 adaptation Horns, but the picture also dovetails nicely with the current vogue for retro-set genre fare, lightly scratching a nostalgic itch.

And Bloody Disgusting’s Meagan Navarro had this to say in her review:

Derrickson and Cargill revive the same traits and structure of Sinister to transform Joe Hill’s short into a feature-length nightmare full of ghostly kids, violence, scares, and a trio of unforgettable performances.

It should be a pretty entertaining and creepy ride. The Black Phone will hit theaters this weekend. Check out the trailer below…

The Reviews For ‘Top Gun: Maverick’ Are In, And They Are Pretty Damn Great!

We have been waiting decades for this ‘Top Gun‘ sequel, and now finally, the wait is almost over. ‘Top Gun: Maverick‘ is scheduled to hit a theater near you on May 24, which is just two weeks away.

Critics were able to catch early screenings of the film, and let’s just say, most of them are going crazy over it. The movie currently sits at a comfortable 81 score on Metacritic, which is enough to earn the “universal acclaim” badge.

A number of critics have given the film a perfect rating, including Empire’s Ian Freer, who wrote:

Avoiding the danger zone of mere retread, Kosinski and co deliver all the Top Gun feels and then some: slick visuals, crew camaraderie, thrilling aerial action, a surprising emotional wallop and, in Tom Cruise, a magnetic movie-star performance as comforting as an old leather jacket. Punching the air is mandatory.

Another top critic, Tomris Laffly, from RogerEbert.com gave the film a perfect rating. Laffly wrote:

As the jets cut through the atmosphere and brush their target soils in close-shave movements—all coherently edited by Eddie Hamilton—the sensation they generate feels miraculous and worthy of the biggest screen one can possibly find. Equally worthy of that big screen is the emotional strokes of ‘Maverick’ that pack an unexpected punch. 

Some critics are even calling Cruise’s performance one of the best of his career, which is saying a lot because the dude has starred in a lot of great films.

I have no shame in admitting my love for the original ‘Top Gun’ flick, so I can’t wait to check out the sequel. CRITICS GOT ME PUMPED!

First Reactions To Upcoming ‘West Side Story’ Are In! Find Out What The People Are Saying!

Everyone has been patiently waiting for more information on Steven Spielberg’s upcoming ‘West Side Story’ adaptation. They had been extremely protective of this flick for months, but now, just a little over a week before its wide release, the first reactions are here!

The film had its world premiere at the El Capitan Theatre in Los Angeles. The musical movie event premiered just days after the death of Stephen Sondheim, who wrote the lyrics for the original production of the musical.

Early reactions from the premiere have been overwhelmingly positive. Check out some of the tweets below…

Reactions are sometimes boosted during premiere events, but I think it’s fair to say the hype is real with this one.

This could potentially make a lot of noise this awards season. West Side Story will hit theaters on December 10.

Check out the trailer below…

The First Reviews For ‘Spencer’ Are Coming In, And Everyone Is Praising Kristen Stewart For Her Performance

As expected, Kristen Stewart is getting Oscar buzz for her brilliant performance as Princess Diana in the upcoming drama, Spencer.

The film, which refers to itself as a “fable” based on true events, takes place over the course of three days during a depressing/oppressive Christmas holiday at the House of Windsor with the royal family as her marriage to Prince Charles fell apart.

It had its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival this week, and the early reviews have been glowing. Stewart received a three-minute standing ovation after the premiere and had tears in her eyes as she hugged the director of the film, Pablo Larrain.

There were a couple critiques of the overall story, but nearly every critic had nothing but praise for Stewart’s performance.

Variety’s Owen Gleiberman had this to say…

Kristen Stewart doesn’t just do an impersonation (though on the level of impersonation she’s superb). She transforms; she changes her aspect, her rhythm, her karma. Watching her play Diana, we see an echo, perhaps, of Stewart’s own ambivalent relationship to stardom — the way that she’ll stand on an awards podium, chewing her lip, reveling in the attention even as she’s slightly uncomfortable with it (and even as she makes that distrust of the limelight a key element of her stardom). Mostly, though, what we see in Stewart’s Diana is a woman of natural-born elegance, with a luminosity that pours out of her, except that part of her is now driven to crush that radiance, because her life has become a wreck.

And then Pete Hammond from Deadline wrote this…

I can’t say enough about Stewart’s performance, steering from an impression of an impossibly well-chronicled figure to beautifully achieving the essence of who she was. It is a bracing, bitter, moving, and altogether stunning turn, taking Diana down roads we have not seen played out quite like in this mesmerizing portrayal.

Safe to say, Stewart will likely be up for her first Oscar nomination.

The Reviews For Pixar’s Latest Film ‘Luca’ Are Mostly Positive

A Pixar film getting rave reviews from critics? Whaaat, no way!

Obviously we’re being sarcastic. Pixar films are typically praised by critics, and for good reason. The amount of work that goes into making a Pixar film is incredible. They spend years developing these things, with dozens of eyes examining, so that critics don’t have to.

Their latest film, Luca, was set to be released inside theaters this month, but due to the ongoing pandemic around the world, the studio decided to release it straight to Disney+

You can now watch the movie on the streaming service, as long as you already have a subscription.

The setup for Luca is that its title character is a young boy living off the Italian coast. It is there he shares adventures with a newfound best friend who has a dark secret: this friend is not actually fully human but a sea monster from another world just below the water’s surface. 

The movie has been getting mostly positive reviews from critics.

Drew Taylor from The Playlist gave it a near perfect rating…

This movie will fill your heart up. Casarosa is an artist with a true perspective, fearless in his creative impulses and limitless in his compassion, and Luca is a pure expression of these sensibilities.

And Alonso Duralde from The Wrap also enjoyed the film…

Luca is sweet and affecting, capturing the bond that strangers can build over a summer, and how that friendship can endure. And like its shape-shifting protagonists, it’s got plenty going on beneath the surface.

But it wasn’t all great. In fact, Robert Daniels from RogerEbert.com claims it’s Pixar’s least “special” film yet…

While some material may hit with younger audiences, Luca makes for Pixar’s least enchanting, least special film yet.

Another critic, Roger Moore from Movie Nation, also slammed the movie…

Disney/Pixar’s animated “Luca” is “The Little Mermaid” without the heart, “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs” without the laughs. It’s a gorgeous-looking time-killer aimed at a very young and undemanding audience.

Who to believe? No idea. You’ll just have to check it out for yourself.

The First Reviews For ‘A Quiet Place II’ Are In, And They Are Mostly Positive

We have been waiting months (or really a year) for the release of A Quiet Place II. The sequel was originally supposed to hit theaters back in March of 2020, but the pandemic pushed it back

But now, the day is finally coming. The sequel will be released inside a theater near you on May 28, and theaters are hoping it’s the first big hit of the summer.

The first reviews have just dropped, and we’re happy to report they’re mostly positive. We wouldn’t categorize them as “glowing” reviews, but they’re certainly good enough.

Rodrigo Perez wrote this for The Playlist:

As an experience, A Quiet Place Part II is still riveting and intense and should check all the boxes for most audiences, especially in the “I just wanna be gripped and entertained” post-pandemic age. For those looking for a little more depth and soul and a movie to fully coalesce in the end? Well, you might have to wait for the next chapter for some true thematic and emotional closure, but still, it’ll be hard to argue this won’t be an escapist thrill for most audiences in theaters, at least.

Screendaily’s Tim Grierson wrote:

A Quiet Place Part II proves to be an even fiercer and more emotional experience than the first installment. Expanding its world slightly without losing sight of the elements that made the original so effective, this superb piece of mainstream horror filmmaking is bolstered by some terrific performances, most notably Millicent Simmonds as a deaf daughter assuming the role of family protector in the wake of her father’s death. 

And just to be fair, let’s take a look at the most critical review from Empire’s Ian Freer…

Whisper it. A Quiet Place Part II might lack the smarts and novelty of its predecessor but it serves up strong set- pieces, Millicent Simmonds shines and Krasinski remains a director to watch.

So there you go. Maybe it’s not as fresh or emotional as the first film, but it’s still thrilling and entertaining, which let’s be honest, that’s all we want at this point. Give us an hour or two of something super entertaining inside a dark theater to get our minds off the dark world that lurks outside.

First Reviews For Bob Odenkirk’s Action Flick ‘Nobody’ Are In, And They’re Mostly Positive

If you’ve been following movie news the past few months, then you know people have been drooling over the trailer for Bob Odenkirk’s upcoming action-thriller, Nobody.

The trailer looked like a lot of silly fun. If you missed it, check it out below…

Odenkirk is of course known for his starring role in ‘Better Call Saul‘ — he’s absolutely incredible in the show.

But does that translate to the land of features? Well, the first reviews for ‘Nobody’ are coming out and we’re happy to report that they’re mostly positive. They may not be as glowing as we expected, but hey, you can’t win ’em all.

One of the more positive reviews comes from The Hollywood Reporter’s John DeFore…

Taking itself much less seriously than the Taken series and its predecessors, it’s a wish-fulfillment romp just as ludicrous as any of them but more fun than most. Just self-aware enough to let a discerning action fan forgive its extremes (including some RED-like geezers-with-guns mayhem near the end), the worst thing you can say about it is this: It’s satisfying enough that it could spawn sequels, possibly distracting its star from the plum dramatic roles he deserves after his brilliant work on Better Call Saul.

Alonso Duralde from The Wrap also enjoyed the film…

Nobody is more violent lark than probing satire, but between Bob Odenkirk’s smartly underplayed performance, the surprises in the screenplay by Derek Kolstad (the “John Wick” series) and the puckishly brutal direction of Ilya Naishuller (“Hardcore Henry”), it’s a wonderfully paced and consistently clever action movie that ups the ante of a genre that’s been dominated by Liam Neeson clones.

But as mentioned above, not all the reviews were great. Screenrant’s Chris Agar had this to say…

Instead of being the next John Wick, Nobody plays out more as John Wick lite, which could be disappointing for some. It’s fun to see Odenkirk try something new at this stage in his career, and Nobody clearly knows what it is and never takes itself too seriously (see: the moments of levity, the soundtrack full of licensed classics). Still, these merits don’t truly help elevate the final product beyond fleeting entertainment.

Nobody is set to hit theaters this Friday, March 26.

Early Reviews For The George Clooney Directed Film ‘The Midnight Sky’ Are In!

George Clooney’s passion project ‘The Midnight Sky’ is set to be released on Netflix just two days before Christmas on December 23.

Clooney directed, produced and stars in this film, which is based on the book ‘Good Morning Midnight‘ by Lily Brooks-Dalton.

The film tells Augustine’s post-apocalyptic story (Clooney), a lonely scientist in the arctic who races against time with a mute stowaway named Iris (newcomer Caoilinn Springall) to stop a group of astronauts from returning home to a global catastrophe.

In addition to Clooney, this film stars Felicity Jones, Kyle Chandler and David Oyelowo.

The early reviews are starting to pour in, and they are wildly mixed. Right now, it sits at a confusing 54 rating on Metacritic, with just 16 reviews counted.

Out of those 16 reviews, one has been categorized as “negative” nine have been “mixed” and six have been “positive.”

So let’s show you little snippets from a positive review, a mixed review, and a negative review.

First up is David Rooney from The Hollywood Reporter, who seemed to really enjoy the flick:

Shifting with grace and narrative equilibrium between the Arctic and a mission returning from Jupiter, this is a desolate elegy for a diseased planet and a prayer for the creation of life elsewhere in the universe. Flanked by a strong supporting cast, Clooney delivers a thoughtful reflection on the toll of environmental devastation.

Uproxx’s Mike Ryan was conflicted. He enjoyed parts of the movie, but felt like the movie may have been better had Clooney not been directing it.

Clooney wants to direct actors who aren’t himself, which I’m sure is why we spend so much time with the crew of the spaceship. But if Clooney weren’t directing, that director would have probably realized that the story thrives in those small moments with Clooney. It’s almost like the director George Clooney is the actor George Clooney’s worst enemy.

Finally, Variety’s Owen Gleiberman seemed unimpressed by the entire thing…

Some viewers will surely be moved. To me, though, The Midnight Sky just proves that a movie that reaches for the stars can still come up empty-handed.

Check out the trailer below…

The First Reviews For Thriller ‘Let Him Go’ Starring Kevin Costner And Diane Lane Are In

Everyone is focused on the election right now, and for good reason, but believe it or not, there are movies being released later this week.

One of those is the family cult thriller, Let Him Go. Kevin Costner stars in the film as a retired sheriff and Diane Lane plays his wife.

Following the loss of their son, the couple leave their Montana ranch to rescue their grandson, who has fallen into the clutches of a dangerous off-the-grid family headed by a matriarch named Blanche Weboy.

The first reviews for this film are coming in, and they’re mostly positive, but just barely so.

One of the more positive reviews comes from The Globe and Mail’s Barry Hertz, who had this to say about the movie…

A skillfully executed thriller that is narrowly aimed at one demographic – audiences over 50 who like a little violence with their late-life dramas – but succeeds at entertaining just about anyone who comes across its dusty, blood-soaked path.

Mick LaSalle from the San Francisco Chronicle had similar thoughts…

In the end, ‘Let Him Go’ is like a Southern Gothic, only set in the Northwest. It’s just a genre movie that delivers the goods, but the restraint and emotional insight of the direction and the quality of the performances bring it up an essential extra notch.

So as you can see, even the positive reviews aren’t exactly glowing. It’s more like, “Yeah, this film is entertaining, but that’s about it.”

And in a time where people are desperate for something new to watch at the theater, that might be just enough.

Check out the trailer below. It’s set to hit theaters November 5, 2020.

The First Reviews For Christopher Nolan’s Spy Thriller Are In, And They’re A Little Confusing

Thanks to the coronavirus, the release date for Christopher Nolan’s Tenet‘ film was pushed back a handful of times. After the second or third delay, the studio decided to go with a different approach.

Instead of one big release date, they would do a sort of staggered release. They’d release the film where theaters were open, and slowly spread to more locations. Their plan is to be in theaters for a longer amount of time.

And the start of that experiment begins next week, with the film premiering in multiple international markets. It’ll then be released in the states in early September.

The first reviews of the film were released today, and while most of them are positive, the response isn’t as unanimous as we’ve come to expect for Nolan films.

The Telegraph’s Robbie Collin loved the movie:

The depth, subtlety and wit of Pattinson and Debicki’s performances only becomes fully apparent once you know where Tenet is going, or perhaps that should be where it’s been. Still confused? Don’t be. Or rather do be, and savour it. This is a film that will cause many to throw up their hands in bamboozlement – and many more, I hope, to clasp theirs in awe and delight.

As did the Empire’s Alex Godfrey…

Once again seizing control of the medium, Nolan attempts to alter the fabric of reality, or at least blow the roof off the multiplexes. Big, bold, baffling and bonkers.

But The Wrap’s Nicholas Barber wasn’t as hot on it…

It’s exhilarating, in a ‘Fast & Furious’ sort of way, especially as so many of the stunts are done for real rather than with CGI. It helps, too, that the swaggering Washington and the smirking Pattinson make a likable double act. But it all happens so quickly, with such brief explanations and so little breathing space, that the story is tough to follow, and therefore tough to care about.

Same goes for Indiewire’s Mike McCahill…

What kind of picture is it? Big, certainly: IMAX-scaled, and a hefty 150 minutes even after a visibly ruthless edit. It’s clever, too — yes, the palindromic title has some narrative correlation — albeit in an exhausting, rather joyless way. As second comings go, Tenet is like witnessing a Sermon on the Mount preached by a savior who speaks exclusively in dour, drawn-out riddles. Any awe is flattened by follow-up questions.

So is Tenet worth the coronavirus/theater risk? Depends on who you believe.