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The 10 Best Films of 2023
Features, Film, Reviews

The 10 Best Films of 2023

It's time to take a look at the best films of 2023. I managed to view over 120 new releases this year and there was a lot to love. Despite the Writers Guild and Screen Actors Guild striking this year, there was a wide array of movies to choose from. The true impact from those strikes will not likely be felt until next year, although the box office of several releases this year were likely less than they could have been due to a lack of promotion. It wasn't all doom and gloom for the overall business - 8 feature films crossed the $200 million mark in ticket sales and 'Barbie' ended up grossing over $636 million domestically. The films below weren't necessarily the biggest hits, but they are the ones that have lingered the most in my mind. Emma Stone stars in 'Poor Things,'...
Sofia Coppola Explores Love and Loss with ‘Priscilla’ (Review)
Features, Film, Reviews

Sofia Coppola Explores Love and Loss with ‘Priscilla’ (Review)

Priscilla Presley was little more than a footnote in Baz Luhrmann's 'Elvis' last year, despite being his only wife. For her eighth feature film, Sofia Coppola turns the tables and puts the focus on Priscilla's formative years. Based on the 1985 memoir Elvis and Me: The True Story of the Love Between Priscilla Presley and the King of Rock N' Roll, we are introduced to Priscilla when she is just 14. An American teenager living in Germany while her Air Force officer father was stationed there, she is lonely and homesick. Then, she meets Elvis. Already a worldwide star, Elvis was drafted into the Army and served from 1958 to 1960. He took a shine to Priscilla, but because of her age, he was cautious about going too far in their relationship. Or so we're led to believe. As they fel...
Longing, Loss and ‘Past Lives’ (Review)
Features, Film, Reviews

Longing, Loss and ‘Past Lives’ (Review)

Full disclosure: the first time I saw the trailer for 'Past Lives' in the theater, I began sobbing uncontrollably. Soundtracked by Cat Power's gorgeous cover of Rihanna's "Stay," I was instantly transfixed by the song's lyrics combined with the film's sumptuous visuals. Not really sure how to feel about itSomething in the way you moveMakes me feel like I can't live without you While the song does not appear in the actual movie, "Stay" perfectly accompanies 'Past Lives,' the first feature film from Korean-Canadian playwright and director Celine Song. It's a story so intensely personal and lived-in, that it doesn't seem possible that it is her first movie. It tells the story of Nora (Greta Lee) and Hae Sung (Teo Yoo) - two childhood friends from South Korea who fell out of touch ...
What to Watch: June 2023 Streaming Preview
Features, Film

What to Watch: June 2023 Streaming Preview

If you’re looking for something new on streaming in June we’ve got you covered. Check out some of our picks for what you should add to your June streaming watchlist! What are you most excited to see? Newly Available on VOD this June Blackberry (available now) Padre Pio (available now) ALL MAN: The International Male Story (June 6) Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret (PVOD, June 6) Master Gardener (June 6) Showing Up (PVOD, June 6) Somewhere in Queens (June 6) Fast X (PVOD, June 9) Beau is Afraid (PVOD, June 13) Maggie Moore (June 16) The Machine (June 20) https://youtu.be/wELPTxJ2YZY *PVOD titles are fresh from theatrical release and generally rent or sell digitally for $19.99 (or higher). All dates subject to change. Criterion Ch...
Military Drama ‘The Inspection’ is a Powerful Debut (Review)
Features, Film, Reviews

Military Drama ‘The Inspection’ is a Powerful Debut (Review)

When he was just 16 years old, Elegance Bratton was kicked out of the house by his mother for being gay. After a decade of homelessness, he joined the Marines. That real-life story inspired his debut feature film, 'The Inspection.' Jeremy Pope earned a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actor in the lead role as Ellis, a stand-in for Bratton. He heads to boot camp in South Carolina at the height of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." Once his fellow recruits discover his secret, he becomes a target for hazing. Jeremy Pope stars in 'The Inspection' (A24) The Verdict Bratton previously helmed the Vice series 'My House' and an acclaimed documentary entitled 'Pier Kids,' but his debut narrative feature is an astonishing leap in filmmaking. Chalk it up to the personal nature of the story, ...
The 10 Best Films of 2022
Features, Film, Reviews

The 10 Best Films of 2022

Despite going to the theater less than ever, I saw over 120 new release films in 2022. When it comes to the modern theatrical experience, I'm reminded of 'A Tale of Two Cities' when Dickens wrote “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times." There are more opportunities than ever for premium moviegoing experiences with multiplexes adding IMAX and Dolby Cinemas across the country, but for the most part, the chain theaters are abysmal at technical presentation. Hell, many theaters aren't even screening movies on the proper sized screens. 'Nope' is one of the Best Films of 2022 (Universal Pictures) But with more and more 4K HDR offerings at home and many new releases being offered for viewing on my couch within 17 days of release, it makes it easy to watch exactly what...
‘Confess, Fletch’ is a Welcome Return (Review)
Features, Film, Reviews

‘Confess, Fletch’ is a Welcome Return (Review)

The character of I.M. Fletcher, aka Fletch, began with series of mystery novels released by Gregory Mcdonald starting in 1974. That original novel was adapted for the big screen in 1985 with Chevy Chase taking on the titular role of an unconventional investigative reporter. Known for his comedic prowess, Chase helped cement the character into the realm of pop culture. After an ill-fated sequel in 1989 that was not based on an existing novel, Fletch's big screen adventures ended even though there are 11 existing books in the series. There has been talk of trying a cinematic reboot for years, but it took actual decades to get off the ground. Jon Hamm stars in 'Confess, Fletch' (Paramount/Miramax) 'Confess, Fletch' is based on the second book in the series, originally published...
SXSW 2022 Film Dispatches, Vol. 1 (Reviews)
Features, Film, Reviews

SXSW 2022 Film Dispatches, Vol. 1 (Reviews)

The 29th edition of the SXSW Film Festival is back in-person (and online) this week in Austin, Texas, for the first time in three years. With nearly 100 feature films on the schedule and 76 World Premiere screenings happening over the course the week, there are plenty of opportunities to be entertained. With today's dispatch, I'll take a look at some of the best documentaries I've caught so far during the festival and I'll be back later in the week with more updates. The Pez Outlaw Before becoming obsessed with the wide variety of international Pez dispensers available overseas, Steve Glew had never been out of the country. Living with his family in rural Michigan and working in a factory as a machinist was a means to an end, but then his OCD manifested itself in collecting all...
How To Stream 2021’s Best Movies
Features, Film

How To Stream 2021’s Best Movies

December is here which means that we're rapidly approaching my favorite time of the year: awards season! This week alone has already seen the Gotham Awards, the National Board of Review, and the New York Film Critics Circle give away their top honors. There are plenty more kudos to follow, heading towards the 94th Academy Awards in March 2022. While there are buzzed-about titles that will be getting theatrical-only releases over the next month or two, many of the year's best films are already streaming or available to rent on VOD. This post will help point you in the right direction so you can get caught up over the holidays and be ready for your office or friend Oscar pools! The list below includes titles available now and some that will be dropping in the weeks ahead. When...
Interview: Junket Come Together In The Face Of The Pandemic To Find Inspiration
Interviews

Interview: Junket Come Together In The Face Of The Pandemic To Find Inspiration

Fresh off the release of their new Dexter-inspired single 'Red Handed', Junket is breaking new ground. We had a chance to catch up with frontman Chris Wicher and got to the bottom of a few things. We were looking to see how the band has been holding up during the pandemic, got a deeper look at the story behind the song, and some advice for new bands just starting out. Wicher is joined by accomplished guitarist Mike Miller. The rock-solid rhythm section comprised of bassist Kyle Hallenbeck and drummer Chad Babcock. 'Red Handed' is the band's first new music in nearly a decade and it's been worth the wait. For updates follow Junket on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram and be sure to stream 'Red Handed' on your favorite digital audio platform. Junket Interview Has the pandemic br...