Destroy All Monsters: Is JOHN WICK Neo's Video Game Afterlife?

The Matrix Revolutions isn't a particularly good movie, but it does do a few things that stand it apart from the majority of franchise wannabe-blockbusters. For one thing, the people of colour all survive - and do so by making...

Now on Blu-ray: Kirsten Johnson's CAMERAPERSON Is One Of Criterion's Strongest Discs

2016 was a disproportionately good year for documentary. Films like I Am Not Your Negro, 13th and O.J.: Made In America lead the conversation on race in America. Docs like Weiner and Tower arrived in an eerily timely fashion to...

Destroy All Monsters: General Leia Is STAR WARS' No-Win Scenario

Two weeks ago, Disney took the unprecedented step of announcing that, in spite of their recent resurrection of Peter Cushing for CGI Frankentarkin in Rogue One and in the wake of the tragic passing of Carrie Fisher, that they would...

Destroy All Monsters: Oscars Stay White As Long As Movies Like LA LA LAND Exist

Watching La La Land, for me, was accompanied by a sinking feeling, a pronounced "of course"-ness, a sensation halfway between grudging admiration and simple exhaustion at the obviousness of it all. Not the obviousness of La La Land itself -...

Destroy All Monsters: The Meme-ification of ROGUE ONE

I'm consistently fascinated by how pop cultural mega-properties take hold in the discourse of the group they are ostensibly created for, the fans. There's an interesting cycle created here. As the internet's "official" criticism gets more and more wrapped up...

Blu-ray Review: Criterion Enshrines Ousmane Sembène's BLACK GIRL

After years of having it on my watchlist, I caught up with Senegalese director Ousmane Sembène's Moolaadé last year and enjoyed it a great deal, leaving me hungry for more. The Criterion Collection has conveniently sailed in to quench the...

Destroy All Monsters: JEM AND THE HOLOGRAMS, A Weird Experiment With Fan Engagement

Let's start with a couple of caveats: 1) Jem and the Holograms, the 2015 adaptation of the Hasbro toy line and cartoon series directed by Jon M. Chu, is terrible; 2) I sort of adore it. I don't like it...

Destroy All Monsters: Michael Giacchino's ROGUE ONE Rebellion

Since the announcement four years ago that Disney would buy Lucasfilm and begin making new Star Wars movies, this moment has been inevitable: excepting Kevin Kiner's fine, fun work on the briefly-theatrically-released Clone Wars pilot, Rogue One: A Star Wars...

Destroy All Monsters: NOCTURNAL ANIMALS Is Sadly On-Point For Women In Hollywood

We might call Tom Ford's Nocturnal Animals divisive, except I'm unsure who exactly it has successfully divided; one half of film Twitter from the other, I suppose. The film is intentionally noxious, centered as it is around a vulgar potboiler...

Destroy All Monsters: We're Bad At Confronting News Like The Bertolucci News

On the weekend one of my listeners jumped on the comment thread for my latest podcast episode to voice his disgust at the news that Bernardo Bertolucci had conspired with Marlon Brando to rape Maria Schneider for a scene in...

Destroy All Monsters: Why The World (Of SUPERGIRL) Doesn't Need Superman

TV's Supergirl (nee CBS, now of the CW) remains an odd beast. It's loud, brash, immature, and often tries to do so many things in a single episode that it half-asses most of them and only lands a few of...

Destroy All Monsters: Filmmakers Need To Get Over The Idea That We Want To Be "Immersed"

I'm as big a fan of high-frame-rate cinema as probably exists in the general audience (i.e. I'm not Doug Trumbull, but I've seen Ufotog). Hey, I liked Avatar a hell of a lot, too - 3-D included. Saw it six...

Blu-ray Review: Jump Straight Into Akira Kurosawa's DREAMS

Akira Kurosawa's DREAMS arrives on Blu-ray from The Criterion Collection, and it's dreamy.

Destroy All Monsters: The Tyranny of Straight Lines in ARRIVAL

Spoilers for Arrival, even if (on one level) Arrival makes a pretty compelling argument that spoilers do not matter. Everything is at right angles in Arrival, which is one of the strategies the film uses to disorient and disrupt its...

Destroy All Monsters: It's Not About You, DOCTOR STRANGE

One of the running jokes in Doctor Strange has Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) constantly having to reassert his title to anyone and everyone, because after the accident that shatters his hands sends him scouring the world for a cure, no...

Destroy All Monsters: I Know How Badly You Want To Screw Up WONDER WOMAN, Warner Brothers, But Please Don't

Before we begin, two caveats: Caveat one: anyone, and I mean anyone, can cut a good trailer. Trailers don't mean a single thing. Let's all take a deep breath on this (but yeah, that's a great trailer). Caveat two: Patty...

Destroy All Monsters: Don't Ruin Christmas The Way You Killed Summer, Hollywood

I'm as against the early proliferation of holiday decorations as the next man, and when I saw the tinsel going up in my local drug store last week - on October 25, and hanging, grotesquely, above the jack-o'-lanterns - I...

Destroy All Monsters: As THE WALKING DEAD Reminds Us, The Apocalypse Is Going To Be Disappointing Too

Spoilers for The Walking Dead, in case you're not on the internet ever. I pulse in and out of AMC's The Walking Dead. This seems to work just fine. I realized pretty early on that the people who run that...

Destroy All Monsters: LUKE CAGE, Democracy, and the Voices Outside the Majority

I'm not a political writer, though like many professionals and non-professionals on the pop culture beat this year, it's been difficult to hold back some political views. Part of this is the inevitable nature of the thing: we have a...

Blu-ray Review: Two Years Later, BOYHOOD Ends On Criterion

Almost as soon as Boyhood was released in June of 2014, Richard Linklater was promising audiences that a Criterion Collection release was forthcoming - which made fans of the collection all the more disappointed when an (admittedly decent) studio Blu-ray...