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Sunday, May 26, 2024

Review: Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes (2024)

 Wes Ball
Starring: Owen Teague, Freya Allen, Kevin Durrand

When the "Caesar Trilogy" ended with War for the Planet of the Apes, I remarked that the end of that film played like a Biblical epic. The set of stories beginning here in Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes picks up that theme, with a title card directly likening Caesar to Jesus and then the remainder of the film continuing to push that idea in a very explicit way that informs some of the relationships and conflicts of the film. I'm not entirely sure that aspect works, but it gave me a lot to ponder as I walked out of Kingdom, a film that kept me engaged and entertained from beginning to end. While some of it definitely feels like a retread of War, that also makes it a nice, soft reentry into this world, giving the audience a sense of the familiar while introducing a host of new characters and establishing how this world has moved on from where we left it.

Saturday, May 25, 2024

Review: The Fall Guy (2024)

David Leitch 
Starring: Ryan Gosling, Emily Blunt, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Hannah Waddingham 

Tough guys have feelings, too, and who better to explore those than Ryan Gosling, spending a second summer deconstructing the idea of masculinity – albeit not in quite as overt a fashion as he did in Barbie. Nor quite as successfully, judging by the box office, which is a shame because The Fall Guy is a hell of a lot of fun. Combining action – and making the case for good, old fashioned practical stunts – comedy and romance, it’s the kind of movie that should have something for everyone.