Film Reviews | Salt Lake City Weekly

Moon Crazy

Ad Astra offers an odd mix of awestruck human drama and moon pirates.

Super Size #MeToo

Can Morgan Spurlock's new documentary avoid association with his admitted bad behavior?

Dis-Topian Fiction

Visions from a not-so-improbable future where Disney owns everything. No, seriously. Everything.

Moon Crazy

Ad Astra offers an odd mix of awestruck human drama and moon pirates.
Director James Gray's heady mix of science-fiction thriller, psychological drama and social commentary feels almost genetically engineered so that it's hard to figure out what he's trying to do.

Fall Movie Preview

Awards fodder and franchise fare share theater screens through the end of 2019.
As multiplexes look to an eternal summer, what do we look forward to?

Man o' War

Angel Has Fallen dials down the franchise's machismo, and turns up a critique of militarism.rd Butler in Angel Has Fallen
If you're going to make a lunkheaded action franchise, give that protagonist a lunkheaded action name.

Born in the UK

Blinded by the Light tries a tricky mix of crowd-pleasing and messy reality.
Blinded by the Light should be a crowd-pleasing slam-dunk, and for a whole lot of people it's probably going to be just that.

The Rage of Innocence

Brian Banks tells a cruel and true story with too little righteous anger.
There's a lot here to make the thinking, compassionate citizen furious.

Taking a Spin

What makes some movie spinoffs of supporting characters soar, where others fall short?Wolverine
Call them sequels, call them reboots, call them remakes, but it's all about reducing risk by giving audiences what they already know.

Setting Sail

Maiden celebrates women refusing to stay where they're told they belong.
But no crew would take her on: Women were bad luck, went the conventional wisdom, or too much of a distraction, or some such bullshit.

Circle of Lifeless

The Lion King demonstrates the difference between realism and vitality.
Director Jon Favreau's version of The Lion King is clearly an impressive technical achievement.

Nutty Buddies

Stuber finds most of the genre pleasures of buddy action comedies.
How rich is the history of fast-paced, funny showcases for an odd couple.

Fun Size

Spider-Man: Far From Home almost lets big ideas overwhelm charming comedy.
He's just a 16-year-old kid, who wants to do the things most 16-year-old kids get to do: fall in love, hang out with friends, etc.

Nothing's Gonna Change My World

Yesterday posits a Beatles-free universe that hasn't changed nearly enough.
How would "Eleanor Rigby" or"Let It Be" land today? The Beatles' songs exist in a bizarre vacuum here, literally excised from the social and artistic environment in which they were written, performed and received.

Role Play

Toy Story 4 is still delightful, but in a strange and different way.
The way those three movies grew over 15 years just like Andy did was essential to their emotional resonance, to an extent that asking "which Toy Story movie was best" feels like missing the point.

The Walking Deadpan

Jim Jarmusch mocks the whole idea of a zombie movie in The Dead Don't Die.
Yet he's also someone who has managed to apply his distinctive sensibility to weirdly effective stories about samurai assassins (Ghost Dog) and centuries-old vampires (Only Lovers Left Alive).

Insubstantial Pageant

All Is True sacrifices narrative for Shakespearean trivia.
In case you haven't been paying attention for the past 30 years, Kenneth Branagh likes William Shakespeare. He likes William Shakespeare a lot.

His Song

Rocketman is not the film you think it is at all. Oh no, no, no.
"He's on his way to take the stage," you think with an internal sigh, "only he's going to pause and have flashbacks about his whole life first."

Refined Crude

Booksmart makes raunchy female coming-of-age into an actual movie.
As directed by actor Olivia Wilde, overseeing her first feature, it's a movie that feels like an actual movie, and not merely a receptacle for women being conspicuously R-rated.


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