Knowing a Good Story When You Hear One

Bill Condonís live-action remake of Disneyís animated classic Beauty and the Beast is such a wonderful experience, so much so that I think Iíve figured out once and for all why remakes have existed pretty much as long as movies have. It has nothing to do with running out of story ideas, despite what the small-minded cynics have been saying for decades; it works in much the same way as repeatedly telling the same bedtime story to children, the demand being so great because they know a good story when they hear one and long for its familiarity.
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An Ape at War

Much has been made of the consensus, strengthened over the decades, that the original 1950s version of Godzilla symbolized the horrors of nuclear war. If weíre to take this at face value, then it shouldnít be too hard to see the supposed intention of this yearís Kong: Skull Island, namely to serve as a metaphor for American involvement in the Vietnam War.
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The X-Man That Got an R

Logan is the second film of the X-Men series to receive an R rating, and the first involving characters introduced in Bryan Singerís original 2000 film. Rest assured that it lives up to it; aside from containing a great deal more language, itís quite noticeably more violent and gory, the title character using the knives in his hands to graphically sever limbs and heads.
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The Horror of Race Relations

Most horror movies are merely a sequence of events, a clothesline on which to hang pop-out scares, tense build-ups, gore effects, death scenes, or some combination of all of the above. Get Out is one of the rare horror movies that doesnít leave it at the level of a technical exercise, thatís actually about something.
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Assembling Another Disappointment

I donít know at what point an hour and a half of near constant hyperactivity suddenly qualified as storytelling, especially in regards to family films. But whenever it happened, the makers of 2014ís The Lego Movie, and now those of 2017ís The Lego Batman Movie, have hopped onto that bandwagon and are milking it for everything itís worth.
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Henson's Puzzling Coming-of-Age Story

In 1982, Jim Henson made The Dark Crystal, a film brought to life with puppetry and yet was distant from the fun, lighthearted innocence of his previous Muppet films and TV shows. Now he has made Labyrinth, and while it once again relies on puppets that look and sound nothing like their Muppet cousins, it relies a lot on very Muppet-like moments of levity, from slapstick physicality to witty bits of dialogue, the latter undoubtedly because of a screenplay by Monty Python alum Terry Jones.
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This Is Not a Muppet Movie

The Dark Crystal shows a very different side of Jim Henson and his team of puppeteers. This isnít a lightweight Muppet movie about the comedic antics of Kermit the Frog and Fozzie Bear; itís a fantasy adventure told through the medium of puppetry, and like many fantasies and fairy tales of old, it doesnít shy away from the frightening or the tragic.
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James Baldwin in His Own Words

Raoul Peckís documentary I Am Not Your Negro, which has secured an Oscar nomination for Best Documentary Feature, is said to be based on an unfinished James Baldwin manuscript, namely for Remember This House, a memoir in which he was to have reminisced about his relationships with slain civil rights leaders Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcolm X, and Medgar Evers.
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The Tagline Is Absolutely Correct

The tagline on the poster of Trick or Treats reads, ď...when Halloween night stopped being fun!Ē Rare for an incomplete sentence conjured up by a marketing department to so accurately describe the film itís attached to. Not only is this movie not fun, itís painfully incompetent. Itís a horror movie with no scares, a comedy without laughs.
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Please Tell Me This Isn't the Start of a Franchise

With Split, a thriller about the controversial mental illness known as Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID), writer/director M. Night Shyamalan rather unfortunately reveals that he doesnít know the difference between a film thatís complicated and a film thatís confusing.
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