Hello, my name is Sean Patrick He/Him, and I am a film critic and podcast host for Everyone's a Critic Movie Review Podcast. I am a voting member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association, the group behind the annual Critics Choice Awards.
Movie Review: 'Mack & Rita' Another Flop for Diane Keaton
I’ve been struggling with this silly review of this very silly movie for a couple of days. Why? Because I like Diane Keaton and I don’t enjoy hating her movies. Diane Keaton is a classy actress with a wealth of talent and style who was great… in the 1970s. Ever since the late 90s something has possessed Diane Keaton to make some of the most unwatchable movies of the past 30 years. Movies such as Because I Said So, Mad Money, Town & Country, The Family Stone, Poms, The Book Club, Hanging Up, And So It Goes, are some of the most dull and insulting movies I have ever seen.
Movie Review: 'Where the Crawdads Sing'
Where the Crawdads Sing is too cowardly to be the kind of unconventional movie it could be. The story of a young woman raising herself in a South Carolina Swamp, Where the Crawdads Sing has an intriguing idea at heart but fails to capitalize on that idea. Instead, the film, and, I am told, the book, fall back on a conventional courtroom story to carry the drama. There is nothing wrong with a good courtroom mystery but it needs to be better than your average episode of Law & Order television episode or it needs to be scrapped. Crawdads fails that test.
Remembering Olivia Newton John with 'Xanadu'
This week, Olivia Newton John passed away. She was 73 years old and had bravely fought cancer for several years. Tributes have poured in for the singer who holds a wonderfully unique place in our culture. She's at once a figure of resolute earnestness that Generation X held up for mockery. But she's also a person who is remarkably easy to like and whose work is very easy to enjoy. Take for instance her rather checkered film career. Aside from Grease, a movie that has achieved cult fame, she wasn't in many movies and she was certainly not in many good movies.
Movie Review: 'Emily the Criminal' Another Terrific Showcase for Aubrey Plaza
Emily the Criminal stars the always appealing Aubrey Plaza as the title character. Emily works as a food delivery drone for a catering company. Her life is generally uneventful. She’d wanted to be an artist when growing up but life got in the way of her dreams. Now, she struggles to get by while watching friends climb corporate ladders and live lavish lifestyles and her frustration grows.
Movie Review: 'Fall' Made Me Afraid of Heights
Well, it’s official, I am afraid of heights. Watching the new movie Fall, the story of two extreme climbers going to the top of the tallest TV tower in Texas, confirmed something I had kind of already known about myself. I’d had a minor panic attack while at the top of the former Sears Tower in Chicago about 10 years ago and I am pretty sure it came from just looking out of a window at the vastness of the City of Chicago and quickly growing dizzy.
New Classic Movie Review: Jordan Peele's 'Us'
Us was a horror movie event when it was released in 2019. Jordan Peele has turned his every work into something everyone needs to see, something confirmed by his recent film Nope. Following the breakout success of his Academy Award winning Get Out, Peele busted through some very high expectations and created another masterful horror movie. Us is a chilling, gripping, watch-it-through-your-fingers, entertaining creepfest. That it is also masterfully acted and directed is an example of how too many filmmakers allow genre to hold them back. The best filmmakers, like Peele elevate the genre rather than lower themselves to it.
Classic Movie Review: 'Who Framed Roger Rabbit?' Deserves Classic Status
Detective Eddie Valiant (Bob Hoskins) stands framed by a tunnel leading him to a physical and emotional destination. On the other side of the tunnel is the place where he needs to go to save his new friend, Roger, but it is also the place where, years earlier, his brother and partner was killed. The conflict weighs heavily on him as he ponders his fate, past and present colliding in a whirlwind of emotions.
Movie Review: 'Marcel the Shell with Shoes On' is a Lovely Film
Marcel the Shell with Shoes On bursts forth from the imagination of Jenny Slate and her creative partner, Dean Fleischer Camp. The story of a lonely little shell with shoes on and the documentary filmmaker who briefly lives with the shell and makes a movie about him, Marcel the shell with Shoes On is a wildly inventive and genuinely lovely movie. Vibrant, strange and endlessly beautiful, Marcel the Shell with Shoes on is one of the reasons we love going to the movies.
Movie Review: 'Prey' is a Terrific Predator Prequel
When it’s good, the Predator franchise is arguably the best action movie franchise going. As my proof of that claim, I give you the new Predator prequel Prey. Debuting on Hulu, Prey is a gorgeous looking movie that also happens to be a badass, blood and guts action movie. Everything you’ve enjoyed about the Predator franchise, aside from Arnold Schwarzenegger, can be found in Prey making it a must see for fans of the franchise and just a really terrific action movie.
Classic Movie Review Saw 6
Since the series debuted in 2004 I have been trying to convince people of the insidious brilliance of the Saw movies. Not merely another torture porn horror series, the Saw movies have a theory behind them. The lead character Jigsaw, aka John Kramer, played by Tobin Bell, believes that he can teach those who have taken their lives for granted to appreciate the gift of life. Jigsaw’s 'tests' are designed not merely to put these people in life and death situations but to reveal their true selves, their inherent nature, morality and character. Each is given a chance to reveal who they are through the choices they make and in doing so save their life or doom them.
Movie Review: 'Sharp Stick' is Pointlessly Provocative
Sharp Stick is an utterly bizarre and deeply off-putting new movie from writer-director Lena Dunham. Now, before you start on the assumption that I am one of those people who hate anything related to Lena Dunham, I assure you that is not the case. I, like most others, found Dunham through her HBO series Girls, and I have been a fan of her sharp, and offbeat work since that series began and ended.
Classic Movie Review: 'Reservoir Dogs' My Summer of Classics
It seems hard to believe now, but in the early 1990's Harvey Keitel was having a hard time finding work. While his close friends Martin Scorsese and Robert Deniro were scoring bigger and bigger films, Keitel was turning away stereotypical thug roles that played too much off his legendary character from Mean Streets. Keitel hadn't worked in a couple years when a hyperactive, young, writer-director named Quentin Tarentino accosted him. Tarentino offered Keitel the role of Mr. White in Reservoir Dogs after writing the role with Keitel in mind. What might have happened had he said no? Thankfully we will never know.