Saturday, 3 December 2022
Friday, 2 December 2022
The Road Dance: Movie Review
Based on John Mackay's book, and steeped in as much tragedy as sweeping shots of the Outer Hebrides' rugged coastline, The Road Dance is an old-school film that feels like the kind that don't get made anymore.
Set in the Isle Of Lewis in the days before World War I and inspired by true events, it's the story of Kirsty (Corfield), a girl who dreams of more than just a life planting potatoes and looking wistfully at ships heading to America off the coast.
When she falls for Fletcher's Murdo, she starts to come alive - but that life is brutally snatched from her when her sweetheart is called up for war, and she's raped by an unknown assailant the night before he leaves.
What follows in The Road Dance is the kind of earnest period drama that was once a staple of Sunday night TV shows or relegated to film festivals.
There are moments which feel stiff in their execution, even if the film's heartfelt approach and solid acting from Corfield anchors in it in the dramatic rather than the melodramatic.
There's compassion in the story's execution as a difficult subject is explored, but how much attachment you'll feel to what transpires languishes largely on how much you're willing to forgive the film its occasional predictabilities.
Maybe a little overlong at its near 2 hour run time, The Road Dance remains an example of how solid dramas can do solid work and provide an impactful experience when it's least expected.
Thursday, 1 December 2022
Poker Face: Movie Review
Cast: Russell Crowe, RZA, Liam Hemsworth, Brooke Satchwell, Elsa Pataky
Director: Russell Crowe
Poker Face has massive potential - even if its premise is all too familiar.
The idea of a group of friends coming together one more time has been mined by the cinema for time immemorial.
Whether it's Peter's Friends or The Big Chill, it's a genre that's proffered up plenty.
Add into this mix a touch of Panic Room from Gladiator's Russell Crowe and it feels like it could be something genuinely tantalising.
But Poker Face is saddled with a lack of decent dialogue, a mournful tone that's stifling and a resolution that's all too quickly dispatched.
Crowe is Jake, the head of a group of five friends who one night calls them all back for a game of poker and a get together for mysterious reasons unknown.
Lavishing his mates with millions of dollars' worth of chips, and then poisoning them, the stakes are indeed high, and the mystery deliciously tempting.
However, things spiral when Jake's getaway is broken in to by a man looking for money and revenge...
Poker Face spends an inordinate amount of time setting things up.
The end result is that nothing really gets going until around the 1hour mark of the film - and it's only 85 minutes long.
While Crowe does reflective and elegaic well, his supporting group of friends are reduced to once-over-lightly characters that get more background in a sun-tinged flashback that feels like it's from Stand By Me.
Lumpen dialogue mixed with some clanging moments don't help proceedings either and pretty soon you feel like Poker Face has squandered its potential.
It may be a reasonable choice for a background streaming service, but in truth, the greatest bluff of Poker Face is that it's masquerading as a high-concept thriller.
Wednesday, 30 November 2022
Fantasy series based on beloved movies are always a risk.
Either you brilliantly build on the world previously created and create something deep and wondrous, or you risk alienating your fandom with a series that feels padded out, and saddled with stories that weren't necessary.
It's a massive relief to say that Willow falls into the first category - a wonderful family fantasy series that catapults the hero of the 1988 movie into the next chapter of his life.
Warwick Davis once again plays Willow Ufgood, the Nelwyn dwarf sorcerer. This time, Willow is charged with leading a ragtag group of seemingly out of their depth heroes on a quest to rescue a kidnapped prince.
But on the journey, each of them faces their own inner demons...
With its comedic edges and its pure heart, Willow is a real treat of a series.
Taking its time to develop its characters and give them all reasonable arcs as well as time to shine, the show builds depth to an already beloved film with ease.
But it doesn't shy away from the fantasy edges either.
With enemies that are both sinister and terrifying enough for a younger audience, plus the spooky atmosphere throughout, this series proves to be the perfect mix of ingredients for anyone wanting a viewing escape.
Anchoring it all is Davis, whose mix of the comedy and the growth of his own character, proves to be the dramatic tonic the show needs. As Willow stumbles trying to find his footing once again, Davis seizes on every opportunity to maximum effect.
It's a combination of the right time, right place for Willow - the TV Series.
With enemies that are well realised, a quest that works episodically rather than just in a longer arc and a depth of backstories evolving for each character, as well as some surprises throughout, Willow is more than just a fantasy romp.
It's heartfelt, earnest and above all, highly enjoyable.
The world of the Nelwyn is ripe for the picking again - and while there are hints the first season will wrap it all up nicely with hints of callbacks from the film, the idea of spending a second season with Willow and his fellow characters is a highly and utterly appealing one.
Willow begins streaming on Disney+ from Wednesday November 30. Episodes 1-7 of the 8 episode series were screened for the purposes of this review
What's on Neon in December
Here's everything coming to Neon in December
His Dark Materials (December 6)
Based on The Amber Spyglass, the final novel in Philip Pullman's award-winning trilogy, in the final chapter of this epic fantasy series, Lyra (Dafne Keen), the prophesied child, and Will (Amir Wilson), the bearer of The Subtle Knife, must journey to a dark place from which no one has ever returned. As her father's great war against the Authority edges closer, they will learn that saving the world comes at a terrible price. Also starring James McAvoy (Split), and Ruth Wilson (Luther).
Gossip Girl (December 2)
Gossip Girl is back, and she's leaving no stone unturned in her efforts to control the scandalous lives and spin the scandalous lies of Manhattan's elite. This semester, there can only be one queen, and by the end of the school year, everyone will know where the bodies are buried and just who was holding the shovel. Starring Jordan Alexander, Whitney Peak, Eli Brown, Emily Alyn Lind, Thomas Doherty, Evan Mock, Savannah Lee Smith and Zion Moreno.
Chucky S2 (December 9)
Chucky is hellbent on exacting revenge against all those who thwarted his last murderous plot. While Jake and Devon encounter trouble as a couple at their new Catholic school, Chucky embarks on another killing spree, crossing paths with familiar franchise faces along the way. Starring Zackary Arthur, Jennifer Tilly, Devon Sawa and Teo Briones.
The Cleaning Lady (December 9)
Luca has been kidnapped by his father, Marco. With nowhere else to turn, Thony enlists the help of FBI Agent Garrett Miller. An incident involving Chris forces Fiona to shield her son by any means necessary. Starring Oliver Hudson (Nashville), Adan Canto and Martha Millan.
Shaq (December 18)
The story of basketball legend Shaquille O'Neal, whose larger-than-life personality transcended the sport and transformed him into a cultural icon. This docuseries chronicles Shaq's ascent to superstardom as a dominant force who won four NBA championships, and encompasses his life off the court, from his upbringing in a military family to his successful broadcasting and business.
Topp Class (December 14)
The cream of Aotearoa's musical and comedy talent pay tribute to the Topp Twins in a live concert at Auckland's Civic Theatre for their 40th anniversary. Featuring acts from Troy Kingi, Tami Neilson, Te Radar, Anika Moa, Michelle A-Court, Tom Sainsbury, Chris Parker, and many more. Made with support from New Zealand On Air.
Rosie Molly Gives Up Everything (December 16)
Rosie Molloy is addicted to everything. After an embarrassing incident at her brother Joey's wedding Rosie wakes up in hospital and decides to change her life by giving up everything. Starring Sheridan Smith, Richard Lumsden, Ardal O’Hanlon, Pauline McLynn.
I Hate Suzie (December 21)
Having lost most of the people who matter to her, Suzie returns to her first love - the public. Suzie must try to keep life stable for her young son Frank, all whilst staying on a new reality TV competition long enough to finance her new role as single mum and ex-wife. Will she restore her reputation and win back the hearts of the British public? Starring Billie Piper.
Branson (December 26)
Acclaimed filmmaker Chris Smith explores billionaire entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson's incredible life. With access to family members, business associates, and Branson himself, this docuseries reveals the ups and downs of a man driven by risk and adventure.
The Batman (December 1)
Batman ventures into Gotham City's underworld when a sadistic killer leaves behind a trail of cryptic clues. As the evidence begins to lead closer to home and the scale of the perpetrator's plans become clear, he must forge new relationships, unmask the culprit and bring justice to the abuse of power and corruption that has long plagued the metropolis. Starring Robert Pattinson (The Twilight Trilogy) and Zoë Kravitz (High Fidelity, Big Little Lies).
Morbius (December 29)
Dangerously ill with a rare blood disorder and determined to save others suffering his same fate, Dr. Morbius attempts а desperate gamble. While at first it seems to be a radical success, a darkness inside him is unleashed. Starring Jared Leto (House of Gucci, Suicide Squad), Matt Smith (Doctor Who) and Adria Arjona (Father of the Bride).
The Northman (December 3)
Prince Amleth is on the verge of becoming a man when his father is brutally murdered by his uncle, who kidnaps the boy's mother. Two decades later, Amleth is now a Viking who raids Slavic villages. He soon meets a seeress who reminds him of his vow - save his mother, kill his uncle, avenge his father. Starring Alexander Skarsgard (Big Little Lies, Succession) and Nicole Kidman (Big Little Lies).
Dog (December 17)
With a dog named Lulu by his side, Army Ranger Briggs races down the Pacific Coast to make it to a soldier's funeral on time. Along the way, Briggs and Lulu drive each other completely crazy, break a handful of laws, narrowly evade death, and learn to let down their guards to have a fighting chance of finding
Starring Channing Tatum (Magic Mike, The Lost City) and Jane Adams (Hung).
Eraser Reborn (December 11)
U.S. Marshal Mason Pollard specializes in "erasing" people faking the deaths of high-risk witnesses. When he is given the task of protecting a women who has agreed to turn in evidence against her crime boss husband, the two must work together to save themselves and stop an even larger criminal plot from unfolding. Stars: Dominic Sherwood, Jacky Lai
Fortress: Sniper's Eye (December 15)
Retired CIA agent Robert Carter Michaels and his son Paul have committed themselves to
rebuilding their relationship. When Paul's fiancé is taken hostage, Paul is forced to do some high-stakes finance hacking in hopes of saving her. Starring Bruce Willis (Die Hard, Red), Jesse Metcalfe (Desperate Housewives) and Chad Michael Murray (One Tree Hill).
The Justice of Bunny King (December 3)
Bunny King is a diamond in the rough who just wants to be with her kids. While battling the system to reunite her family, she takes her niece Tonyah under her wing in a journey that will take them both to the edge against tremendous odds. Starring Essie Davis (Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries) and Thomasin McKenzie (Jojo Rabbit).
Tuesday, 29 November 2022
What's on DocPlay in December
What's on Netflix in December
Monday, 28 November 2022
What's on Disney+ in December
Here’s everything coming to Disney+ in December 2022.
From 20th Century Studios, New Regency, and acclaimed filmmaker David O. Russell comes “Amsterdam,” an original crime epic about three close friends who find themselves at the center of one of the most shocking secret plots in American history. Based on facts that meet fiction, the film stars Christian Bale, Margot Robbie, John David Washington, Alessandro Nivola, Andrea Riseborough, Anya Taylor-Joy, Chris Rock, Matthias Schoenaerts, Michael Shannon, Mike Myers, Taylor Swift, Zoe Saldaña, with Rami Malek and Robert De Niro.
Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules
In “Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules,” based on the second book in Jeff Kinney’s wildly popular book series, the riotous antics of angst-ridden, disaster prone, middle school student Greg Heffley continue, focusing this time around on his complicated relationship with older brother Rodrick. Now, Greg takes on one of his biggest challenges yet - surviving a weekend alone with Rodrick and abiding by his growing list of rules.
National Treasure: Edge of History: Season 1
2 Episode Premiere
Jess Valenzuela’s life is turned upside down when an enigmatic stranger gives her a clue to a centuries-old treasure that might be connected to her long-dead father.Jess has a knack for solving puzzles. She and her friends must follow a series of clues hidden in American artifacts and landmarks. But can Jess outsmart a black-market antiquities dealer in a race to find history’s greatest lost treasure and unbury the truth about her family’s past?
Also in December…
I Want a Baby
Maui Shark Mystery
Jaws vs. Boats
Pentatonix: Around the World for the Holidays
Edge of the Unknown with Jimmy Chin: Season 1
The Incredible Dr. Pol: Season 20
Car SOS: Season 10
Evil Genius: Season 1
Just Love and a Thousand Songs
The American Rescue Dog Show
It's a Wonderful Binge
Night at the Museum: Kahmunrah Rises Again
Weekend Family Christmas Special
Between the World and Us: Season 1
Muppets Most Wanted (Sing-Along Version)
The Thing About Harry
Zombies Halloween Cast Party
Queen Elizabeth: A Royal Life - A special Edition of 20/20
Boston Legal: Season 1 & 2
Encanto at The Hollywood Bowl
Welcome to Chippendales New episodes weekly on Tuesdays
Willow New episodes weekly on Wednesdays
Abbott Elementary: Season 2 New episodes weekly on Wednesdays
Atom's Last Shot New episodes weekly on Wednesdays, finale 21 December
Big Sky Season 3 Finale 7 December
Fleishman Is In Trouble New episodes weekly on Thursdays
Mysterious Benedict Society Season 2 New episodes weekly on Wednesdays, finale 7 December
National Treasure: Edge of History New episodes weekly on Wednesdays
The D'Amelio Show Season 2 New episodes weekly on Wednesdays, finale 21 December
The First Responders New episodes weekly on Saturdays
Men on a Mission Season 1 New episodes weekly on Wednesdays
Bob's Burgers Season 13 New episodes weekly on Wednesdays
Pink Lie S1 New episodes weekly on Wednesdays, finale 14 December
Revenge of Others New episodes weekly on Wednesdays, finale 14 December
The Santa Clauses New episodes weekly on Wednesdays, finale 14 December
The Simpsons S34 New episodes 7 and 14 December
Spidey and His Amazing Friends Season 2 New episode on 14 and 28 December
Sumo Do, Sumo Don't Season 1 New episodes weekly on Wednesdays, finale 21 December
Yakuza Lover New episodes weekly on Wednesdays, finale 28 December
The Choice New episodes weekly on Wednesday
Bleach New episodes
Criminal Minds Season 16 New episodes weekly on Fridays
Eureka Season 1 New episodes 7 December
Gigantosaurus Season 3 New episodes 7 December
The Villains of Valley View Season 1 New episodes 7 December
The Montaners New episodes 28 December
Sunday, 27 November 2022
Puss In Boots: The Last Wish: Movie Review
Cast: Antonio Banderas, Salma Hayek Pinault, Harvey Guillen, Florence Pugh, Olivia Colman, Ray Winstone, John Mulaney
Director: Joel Crawford
Antonio Banderas' silky voice returns to the cocky, self-centred egotist Puss in Boots in the feline's first cinematic outing in 10 years.
Having realised he's facing his own mortality with only one of his nine lives left, Puss finds himself spooked when death starts stalking him and against his better wishes, decides to retire from the wild world of questing and living it up.
Taking residence at Mama Luna's Cat Rescue, Puss resigns himself to retirement and imminent death - but befriended by Harvey Guillen's dog-masquerading-as-a-cat Perrito, he finds his twilight years rudely interrupted by Goldilocks and the Three Bears, a Guy Ritchie-styled crime family who want to recruit him for one last heist.
The job? Stealing the map to find the famed mythical Wishing Star which can grant any desire. But Goldi, Puss and the Bears are not the only ones that want the prize. From Kitty Softpaws to Little Jack Horner, there are more than a few trying to find success at the end of this quest....
There's a darkness that surrounds this family-friendly film, that has visual echoes of the storyboarded and hand-drawn look of the recent smash The Bad Guys.
Opening with a Marvel-style showdown that chucks every bit of animated bravura it can find at proceedings, DreamWorks Animation is clearly interested in reviving the Shrek Cinematic Universe and expanding it.
Including nods to some prior characters in flashbacks, plus a mid-tease that suggests Far Far Away isn't in fact so far away in terms of cinema releases, the film almost feels like it's too top heavy with its ragtag list of characters.
But Crawford's eye for the scrappy throwaway humour and one-liners helps keep this Puss feline fine throughout. Coupled with the gravelly almost OTT intonations of Banderas' liquid honey vocal work, Puss In Boots: The Last Wish is a blast of fun, that occasionally suffers from some lulls in proceedings.
There are some sinister moments that pierce the fairytale silliness (and will scare the younger elements of the audience). and while its message of living the life you have is easily disseminated during the freewheeling onscreen antics that occasionally verge on the shallow but entertaining, Puss In Boots: The Last Wish remains a fun blast of frantic cinema to keep the family amused in the post holiday period.
Puss In Boots: The Last Wish releases in NZ cinemas on December 26
Saturday, 26 November 2022
Alfred Hitchcock- Vertigo: PS5 Review
Developed by Pendulo Studios
Published by Microids
More inspired by the vibe of Alfred Hitchcock than a replay of one of his greatest films, Alfred Hitchcock – Vertigo is the story of Ed Miller, a writer who escaped from a car crash in California.
Miller claims his wife and daughter were riding with him - but no one was found inside the car's wreckage.... has Ed lost it, or is there something deeper and darker happening?
Alfred Hitchcock – Vertigo is a tale of obsession, memory, manipulation, and madness but it never quite finds its own footing as you get to look at the story from different perspectives.
But gameplay's marred by many QTE Events, and some wooden vocal performances that detract from what's on screen. It feels like it should be an interactive movie, but what emerges is more a kind of disjointed game that's based more on sequences than on a through line throughout.
The vocal peformances aren't strong enough to push the story along, and while the game definitely doubles down on the Hitchcockian vibe, it's more a passing nod to the man than an inspiring homage.
Alfred Hitchcock – Vertigo isn't the head spinner it wants to be - and it may not appeal to those who want something decent out of what was promised to be a Memento-style game.
Friday, 25 November 2022
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II: PS5 Review
Developed by Infinity Ward
Published by Activision
A sequel to the 2019 reboot, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II is exactly what you'd expect from the first person shooter franchise that's had somewhat of a bumpy ride the past few years.
Following the escapades of newly formed Task Force 141, a British special forces, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II's campaign follows them as they try and track down an Iranian terrorist who has nuclear capabilities.
It's not exactly if Call of Duty sets out to revolutionise the format - and on that front, its campaign is relatively perfunctory. But it is blessed with several standalone sequences that add a thrilling edge to a game franchise that often teeters dangerously close to both stereotype and cliche.
There are questionable moments as ever - from glorifying gun violence to threatening civilians, the game isn't edgy as much as it is icky. But if you're already in the franchise's thrall in general, moments like this won't matter.
Graphically the game manages to soar, with scenes wonderfully rendered and with bullets zipping by. There's a danger that renders bullets terrifying and grants the game an urgency. Tactics as ever matter, and skills of the usual FPS world will help throughout.
With 12 modes and 15 maps, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II's multiplayer is strong, and playable enough, even if once again it doesn't really reinvent the wheel. Capture the flag, conquest style games are all very familiar and while they're solidly executed, there's a feeling multiplayer may need a revamp in future instalments.
Overall, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II is a solid iteration of the franchise, but it may help to rest the series a little now until some kind of new concept and less cliched stories can be told.
Thursday, 24 November 2022
Emily: Movie Review
Cast: Emma Mackey, Oliver Jackson-Cohen, Fionn Whitehead, Adrian Dunbar
Director: Frances O'Connor
Sex Education's Emma Mackey burns brightly in this take on the Emily Bronte story, that's dulled only by its duration and fuelled by its speculation of her life.
As the film opens, Emily's about to pass on, asked by her sister "How did you write Wuthering Heights?" Despite a quip-led "I put pen to paper", the film then flashes back to take viewers through the life of the so-called "strange one" of the family.
When her stern father (Line of Duty's Dunbar) urges her to take up French lessons with the new curate Weightman (Jackson-Cohen), Emily's soon smitten with his ways and begins an ill-advised affair.
Emily has moments when it truly shines, but in truth, they're all led by Sex Education's Mackey.
A scene where she leads a seance behind a mask and seemingly conjures up her mother's spirit is utterly impressive, and Mackey's turn is what grounds it in its riveting atmosphere.
Equally, the scenes she shares with her brother Branwell show a character at ease and also at conflict with her place in the world. Again, it's Mackey's commanding turn that makes it so watchable.
But stretched out over a 2hr10 minute run time, the film starts to feel bloated and at times spineless, no matter how well shot the moorlands and their desolate vistas are.
One sequence sees her shouting "Freedom in thought" but the more Emily goes on, the more stilted and stifled it becomes. While O'Connor blurs the lines between the known and unknown, the end result is somewhat muddied - and would be written off as conjecture and stuffy period drama - were it not for the utterly compelling Mackey who dazzles more than her material does.
Wednesday, 23 November 2022
Resident Evil: Village: Gold Edition: PS5 Review
Released by Capcom
If you strip away the internet fervour that devoured Lady Dimitriscu, and the Resident Evil edges, Resident Evil: Village offers the same kind of vicarious horror thrills that you'd come to expect from genre.
Picking up after the end of Biohazard, the game that seized on VR and the first person horror experience with verve and tenacity, Village plops you back in the fray.
You're back as Ethan Winters, fresh from surviving the Baker house of horrors, and now living with your wife and baby daughter somewhere in Europe. However, within moments of an idyllic scene playing out, your wife is seemingly slaughtered in a spray of bullets and your child is abducted. To make matters worse, you're kidnapped by Chris Redfield, who apparently helped save you at the end of the last game - and then things take a further turn, when after a crash, you stumble into a village that's deserted and full of potential supernatural threats.
With more of a balance on scares as well as action, Resident Evil: Village is a solidly packed tautly woven horror outing that entertains as much as it enthralls.
On PS5, it's largely helped by the fact the game looks stunning.
Every decaying area of the Village and the surrounds looks pristine, adding to a sense of both the European and the Gothic. Creatures, demons and whatever's hunting you are delivered in a polished fashion, their fangs glistening as they're bared, ready to bite.
The game delivers smoothly too, with not one moment struggling to load or play, thanks to the power of the PS5. (Which is as expected.)
But it's this next-gen sheen that really does make Resident Evil Village the experience it is - much like Until Dawn's Rush of Blood VR Efforts, the game knows that providing a strong mix of survival skills with jump-out-of-your-seat moments is what the RE fans - and even non-fans want.
It does however lead to a feeling of a carnival funhouse at times, and is more invested in jump scares and chases than a serious horror would, but Village never claims to be massively deep in its plot and its machinations.
While combat is chunky, defence is relatively pointless as even blocking will still see you attacked. Crafting is easily done, but as ever resources in Village are scarce, so the pain of collection has to be measured against the levels of potential success.
At the end of the day, Resident Evil: Village more than delivers on its eerie promise to fans and non-fans alike. Sure, there's a bit of chopping and changing between action, horror and puzzle solving, but when you're caught up in the middle of it all, this is one Village you'll have trouble leaving.
Added in to this release are Re: Verse an online fighter brawler that's more a novelty than a necessity and a third person version of Village.
The third person element is a nice touch for the game, as it gives more of a perspective on incoming enemies but it does rob the atmosphere of some of its peril as the game progresses.
If you're after frights, then it's still first person that works best for this franchise, but for those looking to lessen their imminent demise, it's a solid touch.
Tuesday, 22 November 2022
Strange World: Movie Review
Reminiscent of The Land Before Time, Journey to the Centre of the Earth, Fantastic Voyage, Jules Verne and any number of moments from any Irwin Allen TV series, Disney's Strange World is yet another take on a father-son relationship.
Gyllenhaal voices Searcher Clade, the son of legendary explorer Jaeger Clade, who loses his dad after he chooses a life of exploration rather than staying home to bring him up in the land of Avalonia.
25 years later, Searcher has his own family and has made his name from out under his father's shadow, and farms a power source that's changed Avalonia. But when he's told the power source is potentially dying, he must embrace his explorer past to try and save the day.
However, things get more complicated when his family get involved in the rescue mission, and he runs into his father again...
Strange World had potential to be something different and inspiring for the Disney stable.
Drawing on pulp magazines of the past, sci-fi yarns and from derring-do adventures archives, there's much in this story that feels familiar and yet ripe for a makeover.
With a world that's wondrously realised via starkly different palettes and creatures made of gelatinous form-free blobs, there's stuff to like about Strange World - but not quite enough to make it into the pantheon of timeless classics. It has heart, and earnestness, but there's not a high bar that the film reaches for or achieves here, sadly.
In some ways, it feels like a thin story stretched a little too far in parts and a separation of characters that in truth feels arbitrary rather than narratively enticing and enriching. It is also disappointing to see that the LGBTQ elements of the story, so strongly introduced early on, are reduced to the sidelines and become perfunctory rather than leading parts of the narrative, as the age-old daddy issues come to the fore.
Gyllenhaal and Quaid though make for good foils for each other, with Quaid's roughness rubbing up nicely against Gyllenhaal's more optimistic tone. The more comedic elements will appeal solely to the young and the young-at-heart, but there aren't enough standout moments in the movie to render it a classic.
It won't surprise anyone to note there's an eco-message in this film, but it's handled in a somewhat muddled fashion and not entirely surprising at all. There are elements that gel in Strange World, but it feels clunky, and like the creative vision wasn't quite coherent enough to compel its transition from the page to the big screen.
What's on Prime Video in December
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