Feature, Preview, Thoughts

Winter & Spring 2023 Movies I’m Excited For

Wow, it’s almost February? How quickly time passes by will never not shock me. While the month has been lite on big movies to go see, (Plane, I will check you out soon) HBO adapting one of my favorite video games The Last of Us as a show has been pretty exciting. Fans of compelling characters and a brutal examination of love will really enjoy this. Don’t get scared off by the zombie setting, it’s not that kind of story, show, or game.

Anyways, movies! While the award season is in full swing for last year’s movies, this year is getting ready to pop off in a really fun way as more and more movies that pre-MCU domination would have been saved for the summer release in the last winter and spring. Below are the movies I’m most excited to see in these movie-going seasons.

Knock at the Cabin – February 3rd

I know, I know. M. Night Shyamalan movies are a real dice roll. Sometimes you get some interesting fun mystery movies, and other times the twist is just so bad that you feel duped for watching it. That said this movie seems to put the concept up front and center. A family of three is forced to make a terrible choice. Either save their family or choose one of them as a sacrifice to save the rest of the world. Oh, and they must make a choice because four strangers broke into their cabin and won’t let them leave until they make their decision. The cast looks great, and the premise sounds like a recipe for a pretty tense movie, yeah… I’m willing to be duped for this one.

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania – February 17th

MCU’s post-Avengers Endgame movies have been a bit all over the place. Save for Spider-Man: No Way Home most have not lived up to expectations. That also includes the Disney+ shows which have been a bit of required viewing to get the full scope of this never-ending franchise. All that said, this third Ant-Man movie which kicks off Phase 5 of this wild entertainment experiment looks like it could be the one to bring back some focus and deliver on what fans have loved about the MCU. I have always liked the Paul Rudd starring movies with their unique side story humor approach, and while this movie looks to be of a more serious tone it invites an interesting question. Was Tony Stark/Iron Man right to steal away five years of many loved ones’ lives for what he wanted to preserve? This feels like the other side of the Endgame coin that was never really discussed. I am super intrigued and can’t wait to see the next large-scope villain (Kang played by Johnathan Majors) take center stage in the MCU.

Cocaine Bear – February 24th

This movie is either going to be a ridiculously fun time or so awful you can’t look away bad. I don’t know yet, but a movie about a bear that is on cocaine terrorizing everything around it is a premise I never thought I’d see in a movie releasing in theaters. A buried-in-the-back-of-the-queue Netflix movie? Yeah, that sounds right, but a movie people will see in a theater? That’s bold Universal and like Knock at the Cabin I’m willing to take the plunge.

Creed III – March 3rd

The Creed franchise has been a pleasant surprise from the start and for me, it’s been better than Rocky so far. Will Creed III continue that trend? With Johnathan Majors has Michael B. Jordan’s opponent? It just might. By the way, what a start to the year Major is having right? Bring on the next tense boxing drama!

Inside – March 17th

Speaking of tense, Willem Dafoe’s Inside (not Pixar’s Inside) looks like the tensest movie in a while. An art thief gets trapped in an overly secure penthouse, and no one is coming to save him. Will he survive physically? Mentally? Dafoe always does a great job playing bonkers off-the-wall characters and this looks to be no exception. Get ready to clinch your teeth with this one, folks.

John Wick: Chapter IV – March 24th

It’s been a long four-year wait since chapter three, but John Wick is back baby! This sneakily made franchise has been a blast as far as action movies go and I can’t wait to see what new and wild way Keanu Reeves’ Wick finds a way to murder an enemy assassin. How do you top a pencil or a book? I don’t know but it will be fun to find out!

The Super Mario Bros. Movie – April 7th

Nintendo and Mario have been a part of my life since I was born. Nostalgia alone would make me want to see this movie, but the fact that it has a stacked cast of voice talent and the trailers have actually been really fun? Child me is ready to come out for this one! It’s been a long wait for a great Mario movie, and it might finally be over.

And that’s it! Not a bad list of movies for this first chunk of the year, right? The summer movie season starts in May and as we get closer to that date, I’ll put up another post like this for all the wild movies to come. Till next week, have fun at the movies!


The Oscars 2020 – Reactions

Parasite WON!!! I really did not think it was going to happen. I thought maybe at best it would split best picture and director with Sam Mendes’ 1917, but it took it all. All in all I don’t think there was any winner that really seemed too much of a stretch. Well maybe 1917 losing production design to Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. I mean come on people, the meticulous work it required to recreate WWI is a bit mindbogglingly. But fiiiine, Hollywood really likes itself so it had to get one in there before they did something that will benefit the industry by voting Parasite to the win.

While we are on the winner subjects, this year the academy did a slightly better job in making sure most winners had a chance to actually thank people for winning. This years award winner that just made me smile to no end was for the original score category. Hildur Guðnadóttir definitely deserved it and I can’t wait to hear what she does next.

Outside of the award winners themselves, the show itself continues to be this very weird thing. The opening number had little nods to a handful of movies that were straight out snubbed this year which okay… The Cats bit while amusing at the beginning was also super effed up when you think about them throwing a special effects team under the bus when I’m sure they weren’t the ones getting to call the shots on anything in the production. Then you had fresher actors/actresses that would welcome out the actual award presenter which felt very strange. To the point that 1917 star George McKay actually pointed this out before passing it off to another presenter. Then there was the out of the blue Eminem performance. Just a whole bunch of head scratching things. Which still bugs me because then they have to rush the next award winner off the stage.

The Oscars still feels like they are trying too hard to please people that really don’t give an F. I don’t know how many years they are tied to ABC but once that deal is done, (or if it’s an every year thing) they should really push this out to additional options. Streaming partners would be a smart move. The sooner they can stay away from needing to please viewer numbers and instead can focus on the actual award winners themselves the better.


The Oscars 2020 – My Thoughts and Predictions

The Oscars are upon us once more! And I did a thing! I watched all the best picture nominees! Well almost, I watched half of The Irishman, annnnd it wasn’t for me. No amount of additional voice over and old people movements in digital young bodies was going to change my opinion on that one.

Anywhoo, I felt after a year of pretty consistent movie blogging that I would actually take the Oscars a tad more seriously. But in serious I mean, just have fun with it because honestly an awards show for art is a little crazy when you think about it. You know that thing that is subjective and has different context based on every individuals own personal life experiences? Yeah, let’s find a way to objectively say which one is better. So to the FUN!

Below I’m going to give you some quick thoughts on all the best picture noms, along with a few other highlights at the end of movies outside of the big nine.

Ford v Ferrari

Ford v Ferrari was a solid sports drama movie. It was good, great even, but I really don’t have much more to say about it. It didn’t blow me away nor did it do anything that really annoyed me. It was just a really great average movie, which alright cool, but did it really need a best picture nom?

The Irishman

Maybe I just don’t like mob movies? Maybe I don’t really hold Scorsese on a pedestal? Or maybe I still haven’t found the Netflix movie that makes me a believer in their quality? I don’t know, but what I do know is I couldn’t sit through this thing. I watched over half of it, and the way the movie was told with so much voice over explaining every detail, and the odd decision to use de-aging instead of casting other actors for the younger versions of the main characters was just obnoxious to me. It felt like this movie could have been a miniseries, 8-10 hours long, and then you could have done away with endless voice overs. Out of all the nominees this was the lowest of the low for me, and could have been replaced by so many different movies that I feel deserved the slot over this.

Jojo Rabbit

Finally to something I actually enjoyed. I really enjoyed the Taika humor that oozed out of this movie. The way he was able to turn a story about a Nazi fanatic child into something more hopeful than dark was brilliant to me, plus of Scarlett Johansson’s two nominations, this one is the one I would like her to get the award for. Was it the best movie of the year? I wouldn’t say so, but it’s definitely up there.


I said it in my review, I’ll say it again, Joker is a dark messed up movie. It has the most nominations of any movie this year, but of the eleven it’s going to get just two. That would be for the insane performance from lead actor Joaquin Phoenix, and the haunting score from Hildur Guonadottir. The rest of the movie is very well made, but those two standouts are what you should see that movie for.

Little Woman

I’ve never seen or read any Little Women adaptations, so I didn’t know what to expect out of this. I liked it. All of the actresses gave great performances (was a big fan of Florence Pugh), the story was very positive, and by the end you felt pretty good after watching it. The costumes were also a pretty big standout of this one.

Marriage Story

Well looky here, another Netflix movie, and another movie that I just didn’t like that much at all. To be fair it’s goal of capturing the emotional war that is a divorce it met excellently with this movie. It’s just for me, the crux of the movie being these two characters felt very off to me. They didn’t feel like real people, and when a movie is all about making you feel uncomfortable that doesn’t help either. Where at the end of Little Women, I had this good feeling about myself, this movie just made me feel down. That said, there were some solid performances in there, I don’t think this was necessarily Adam Driver’s best work, but I guess enough did to get him in the best actor category. It’s Laura Dern’s evil lawyer character that will surely when best supporting actress against her fellow co-star Scarlett.


Now we are getting to the good stuff. 1917 is one of the best movies of 2019. It’s one shot wizardy, the production design, the directing, the acting, the score, this isn’t a thing that I didn’t like about this movie. It’s powerful, it’s relentless, and you the viewer are there for every moment of the nightmare that was World War I. This is the favorite to win most of the major categories, and I wouldn’t be shocked if it did just that.

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

My only issue with this one is it felt a tad too long. There was some extra Sharon Tate fluff that I don’t think really made the movie any stronger, and just stretched things out where they didn’t need to be. Outside of that though this is a great movie. The Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt pairing was just as good as we all hoped it would be. Even when the two characters go on their own journeys they are both entertaining to watch. Out of all the awards this one is up for, Brad Pitt’s supporting actor nomination is the most likely to win come awards night.


And here we are. Parasite is the best movie of last year. While I love 1917 just as much, I can’t argue that Parasite’s expertly crafted script, editing, production design, and cast are a perfect mixture that creates one of the most unique experiences I have had with a movie in a long time. The big question is, can it break the Oscar barrier for ignoring movies that don’t have English as the primary language? I don’t know the answer. This movie should win all the awards it has been nominated for but the ones I feel pretty confident in are best original screenplay and best international film.

So those were the big nominees, but there are some movies that I felt deserved a little more love than what they got. So here’s a few that missed out, that should have definitely been in the conversation.

Knives Out

For me the were three movies that were up there as my favorites of 2019 and in my favorites of the last decade. 1917, Parasite, and Knives Out. Knives Out got an original screenplay nom, but this one deserved more. Best Costume Design, Best Support Actress (Ana de Armas), and Best Picture. For those who haven’t seen it yet, please give it a shot!


Horror movies don’t get the support of the awards circuits, and I think that’s a shame. This movie has such excellent acting performances since move the cast is playing TWO roles of the same person. At the very least Lupita Nyong’o should have received a Best Actress nom, but I would also throw this one in for Best Cinematography as well.


Along with horror, comedy is another one that gets ignored when it comes to awards. While I can’t say for sure which categories this one should get nominations for, best original screenplay maybe, it’s still one of the best movies of last year and deserves some kind of recognition.

And there ya have it, my thoughts on the big movies before the awards night. While some categories are a lock, I’m hoping for some drama between the big heavy hitters in 1917 and Parasite. I would not be upset if either movie gets all the awards, but it would definitely be a statement if Parasite got the Best Picture win. Well I guess we don’t have too much longer to wait, go make some popcorn and get the drinks going, it’s movie awards night!


My 2019 Oscar Thoughts

An awards show should cater to the industry it’s awarding and that industry’s fans, not random viewers who do not care either way.

Color me surprised, the Oscars was not the train fire that so many of us thought it would be. In fact, it wasn’t half bad. I’ve never been a big awards show person because a lot of the wins seem to have a kind ulterior motive and this year was no different. That said I have learned to look past the awards I don’t agree with and take in the moments the really mattered. There were some artists last night who were given recognition on the greatest stage of their craft and capturing their joy filled emotions was and always will be beautiful.

Let’s take it back to the beginning though, the show opened with a performance by the remaining members of Queen with touring vocalist Adam Lambert. There could not have been a better way to open the show and it gave me the impression that they may pull something off with this year’s presentation. What followed was a host-less Oscars and it was the best thing that could have happened to this show. Take out the host and you just cut out a bunch of extra fluff that has and never will be needed. It was also more interesting to see a variety of personalities on stage without a framing device past IT’S AN AWARDS SHOW.

This show was lean for the most part and I have to imagine that cutting out a host probably shaved twenty minutes of air time, which apparently is massively important to ABC, the network host. I’m typically not a huge fan of the live music performances but this year gave me not just Queen but the Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper duet Shallow. I was a huge fan of A Star Is Born, the chemistry between the two leads being a huge reason, and damn do these two have the best chemistry I have seen regardless of the venue. The performance brought back those strong emotional feelings I felt when watching the movie. In fact, I’m starting to get bummed again it didn’t win more awards…

I would be remiss to again state that the true heart of the show to me is watching an impassioned artist take in this moment of recognition and reflection of what they accomplished the previous year. There were some very beautiful and moving speeches. Black Panther’s Hannah Beachler for Production Design was the standout this year. When you feel those same feelings that the award winner is feeling you know they are speaking from the deepest place in their heart. It was special, which leads to the biggest issue I have with how the producers of this show choose to run it.

This is supposed to be about the honoring those who have won the awards for whatever category they were nominated for. Why then do we have time for cringey bits? Jokes that never land to the full audience? Why is that time taken away from award winners where they have to speed through their acceptance and acknowledgement of this huge moment for them? I don’t get it, I didn’t need the Melissa McCarthy bit playing with a puppet, I don’t need to see people descend from the sky. I want to see the show about awarding achievements in film to be about those achievements in film. The answer is clear, that the network needs those audience numbers, but it just adds circus tricks to what is supposed to be a prestige show.

Along with being a big movie fan, I’m an avid video game enthusiast. They have had an independent award show called The Game Awards for the last five years. That show gets what it is, and it can do that because the show runner Geoff Keighley decided to build the show directly on streaming platforms. He isn’t bound down to some silly need to draw in audience that doesn’t care for the subject matter, it caters to that industry and to that industry’s fans. It’s the example of what every prestige awards show should aspire to and a goal post of what the Oscars need to reach if it wants to keep the relevance that it so desperately needs.

It occurs to me that in my award show rant, I didn’t even comment about the winners themselves. Congratulations to all the winners! Did some of my favorites not win? Yeah that happens pretty much every year, but I’m not everyone and that’s okay. Go Movies!