Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Edward Snowden

Snowden Isn’t the Thrilling Biopic It Wants to Be

It’s difficult to write a review about Snowden because it’s so bland. I don’t even know how being this bland is possible for a movie with such a good pedigree. I mean, it’s directed by Oliver Stone (Any Given Sunday, Platoon). It has great actors like Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Shailene Woodley, Melissa Leo, Rhys Ifans, Nicholas Cage, and Zachary Quinto. And it’s about a public figure who, to this day, is controversial. That should make it fascinating! So why isn’t it? Continue reading “Snowden Isn’t the Thrilling Biopic It Wants to Be”

Movie still from The Divergent Series third installment, Allegiant

Allegiant: Will Somebody Pull the Plug on This Franchise?

The Divergent Series feels like the never-ending story. Not only are three books being stretched into four movies, but the movies have gotten progressively worse each time, which makes the slow jog to the finish line that much more unbearable (Did no one learn their lesson after The Hobbit?). Do we blame it on bad filmmaking, author Veronica Roth’s mediocre young adult novels, the bland actors who play one-dimensional characters, or the onslaught of too-similar special snowflake saves dystopian society stories? I say all of the above. Continue reading “Allegiant: Will Somebody Pull the Plug on This Franchise?”

insurgent movie

Insurgent: Nothing More Than a Means to an End

Tris (Shailene Woodley) and Four (Theo James) are on the run from Erudite leader Jeanine (Kate Winslet), who needs a Divergent to open a message box from their society’s founders. Along the way, Tris fights her inner demons while Four encounters his mother, Evelyn (Naomi Watts), who was presumed dead and now gathers an army of factionless to overthrow Erudite and the faction system. Continue reading “Insurgent: Nothing More Than a Means to an End”

Divergent movie 2014

Divergent: Same Formula, Different Concept

Five factions coexist in dystopian Chicago—Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the friendly), Erudite (the knowledgeable), and Candor (the honest). On Choosing Day, Tris Prior (Shailene Woodley) must choose one of them. After getting inconclusive aptitude results, a problem that Tris later learns is called “Divergent,” she chooses to join the Dauntless faction, forsaking her Abnegation life and family. Continue reading “Divergent: Same Formula, Different Concept”