Like Prince of Persia (2010), I had completely forgotten that The Sorcerer’s Apprentice (2010) existed. (Apparently, 2010 was the year for forgettable live-action Disney films.) The only thing I remembered about the film was when David (Jay Baruchel) was training to be a sorcerer and a ball of energy hits him in the crotch. Needless to say, I had pretty low expectations for the re-watch.
Netflix’s record with original Hollywood action movies is patchy at best. When the so-so Extraction is among the finer examples of their big-name blockbusters, there’s something not working. With The Old Guard, though, they might hopefully have found a game-changer. It’s everything that previous A-lister action vehicle 6 Underground wasn’t. Where that was incoherent, chaotic, and offensively dumb, The Old Guard is focused, sharp, and surprisingly intelligent.
A new month has come, and that means a lot of new movies on Tubi TV! Today, I will start my deep-dive with two of the newest gems to come to the service. I had seen these two movies a long time ago in a movie theater, and now Tubi TV allows me to rewatch them once again. The other two entries, on the other hand, are completely new to me.
When I saw Relic at the Sundance Premiere in January (it feels like an eternity ago), I was floored. Catching up with the film before sitting down to pen this, soon to be, overwhelmingly positive review, I was still floored. In her directorial debut, Natalie Erika James has crafted a horrific masterpiece on par with the likes of Sam Raimi and Jordan Peele‘s theatrical debuts in The Evil Dead and Get Out, respectively.
Young couple Emily and Randall (Liana Liberato and Noah Le Gros) travel to a getaway beach house for a weekend of relaxation. On arrival, they find the beach house double-booked with an older couple Jane and Mitch (Maryann Nagel and Jake Weber). There’s a brief period where The Beach House may go down the route of something like Ma or Get Out with the welcoming elders being slightly off. However, the senior pair are actually just warm and friendly. It’s telling how much that idea can be toyed with in the horror field, as so many films overplay the “niceness is camouflage” trope.
The story of the underdog is one of the oldest stories in human history. It has inspired countless people over the generations to go for what they want, despite the obstacles that stand in their way. But the problem with this narrative is that it is too common. For a film with this basic story to succeed, it has to stand out from the pack. Enter Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga, which premiered on Netflix on June 26th. Part absurdist comedy and part inspirational drama, this movie combines two completely different dramas into a semi-new narrative, though it rarely succeeds.