Overview: Coco is a compelling story about family, ancestry and remembrance

3 out of 4 stars

Title Coco Composed by Lee Unkrich and Adrian Molina Directed by Lee Unkrich and Adrian Molina Starring Anthony Gonzalez, Gael Garcia Bernal and Renee Victor Classification PG Nation USA Language Language

How do you create the picture of a skeleton look adorable and friendly? Undoubtedly that aesthetic challenge was top-of-mind at Pixar for several months before the launch of Coco, the latest animated feature from the Disney-owned studio behind the Toy Story and Finding Nemo franchises. read more

Review: Great intentions outweigh Ability in Holocaust Movie Paradise

2.5 out of 4 stars

Title Paradise Composed by Andrrey Konchalovskiy and Elena Kiseleva Directed by Andrey Konchalovskiy Starring Yuliya Vysotskaya and Viktor Sukhorukov Genre Drama Language Language Year 2016

It seems almost pointless to say by this point in history, but movies about the Holocaust are always tremendously complicated undertakings. To capture the terror, to make sense of this senseless, a filmmaker must attain a perfect balance of compassion, confidence, fearlessness and a thousand other impossible-to-wrangle elements. Now and then, the alchemy is reached, the latest example being 2015’s Son of Saul. read more

Review: The Star’s take on the nativity of Jesus is Somewhat amusing but mostly boring

2 out of 4 stars

Title The Star Composed by Carlos Kotkin, Tom Sheridan and Simon Moore Directed by Timothy Reckart Starring Steven Yeun, Kristin Chenoweth and Tyler Perry Genre Cartoon Classification PG Nation USA Language Language Year 2017

In Sony Animation’s new faith-based holiday movie, a star is tired. Helmed by animator and filmmaker Timothy Reckart, The Star places a glossy, computer-animated new spin on the nativity of Jesus for spiritual moviegoers and a generation coming of age through a regressive American administration. read more

Review: It’s time to disband Justice League

2 out of 4 stars

Title Justice League Composed by Chris Terrio, Joss Whedon and Zack Snyder Directed by Zack Snyder Starring Ben Affleck, Gal Gadot, Jason Momoa, Ezra Miller and Ray Fisher Genre Action Classification PG Nation USA Language Language Year 2017

If you’re not a fervent follower of superhero action films, going to the genre can feel like falling in on someone else’s soap opera. As the latest entry in the DC Extended Universe unspools, you can almost hear the diehard fan whispering in your ear: “So, Superman is dead, and Batman is type of implicated, or feels guilty about it or something, but now he is found Wonder Woman and she is finished fighting the First World War …” read more

Review: Murder on the Orient Express’s modernization Effort fails to connect

2 out of 4 stars

Title Murder on the Orient Express Composed by Michael Green Directed by Kenneth Branagh Starring Kenneth Branagh, Johnny Depp, Michelle Pfeiffer and Judi Dench Genre Mystery Classification PG Nation Malta/USA Language Language Year 2017

Perhaps it’s no coincidence that francophone celebrities are not throw as Hercule Poirot; though his nationality was motivated by real Belgian refugees in Britain during the First World War, Agatha Christie’s great detective is no more than the Anglocentric dream of overseas eccentricities and continental manners expressed in ooh-la-la accents. And so, another British top man essays Poirot: Kenneth Branagh casts himself as the detective in a revival of Murder on the Orient Express he also directs. read more

Inspection: Daddy’s Home 2 is an indefensible group effort in Collapse

0 out of 4 stars

Title Daddy’s House Two Composed by Sean Anders and John Morris Directed by Sean Anders Starring Will Ferrell, Mark Wahlberg, John Lithgow and Mel Gibson Classification PG Nation USA Language Language

If the mythical Soviet filmmaker Andrei Tarkovsky spoke the truth — and looking at , there’s little doubt he was one to tell a lie — the role of art isn’t, as most suppose, to “put across ideas, to disperse ideas, to serve as an example.” No, based on Tarkovsky, the objective of art — of cinema itself! — “is to prepare a person for death, to plough and harrow his sou” read more

Review: Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri defies expectations

3.5 out of 4 stars

Title Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri Composed by Martin McDonagh Directed by Martin McDonagh Starring Frances McDormand, Woody Harrelson and Sam Rockwell Genre Drama Classification 14A Nation U.K./U.S. Language Language Year 2017

Midway through Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, a fawn seems, Bambi-like, in a clearing. The grieving Mildred Hayes, the movie’s protagonist, nearly shakes her head in disbelief: Can this delicate but persistent creature be the spirit of her murdered teenaged girl? No, certainly not. “You are pretty, but you ai not her,” she tells the little deer, squelching the symbolic apparition as it materializes. read more

Inspection: The Square is maddening to watch

2 out of 4 stars

Title The Square Composed by Ruben Ostlund Directed by Ruben Ostlund Starring Claes Bang, Elisabeth Moss, Dominic West and Terry Notary Genre Comedy Classification 14A Nation USA Language Language Year 2017

A little girl wanders into a public square, her clothing in tatters, her pet kitty cat mewing pathetically. A digital clock ticks in the background. An operatic soundtrack swells. And then, well, that is the stage that The Square turns from a sharp art-world satire into something egregiously bonkers, a collision of blunt comic beats and heavy-handed social commentary that is more messy than deep. read more

Inspection: Thor: Ragnarok injects some levity to a bloated franchise

3 out of 4 stars

Title Thor: Ragnarok Composed by Eric Pearson, Craig Kyle and Christopher Yost Directed by Taika Waititi Starring Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston, Tessa Thompson and Cate Blanchett Classification PG Nation USA Language Language

There’s a zippy celebrity cameo off the top of Thor: Ragnarok, the 63rd (fine, 17th) movie in what has been christened the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Our name hero (Chris Hemsworth) has just returned from vanquishing some monstrous CGI demon-thingy and is back home in the world Asgard celebrating his success, when he comes across a group of local thespians putting on a play about his own past experiences. read more

Review: A Bad Moms Christmas reaches for franchise territory by replacing the PTA with the holidays

2 out of 4 stars

Title A Bad Moms Christmas Written by Jon Lucas and Scott Moore Directed by Jon Lucas and Scott Moore Starring Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell and Kathryn Hahn Classification 14A Country USA Language English

At the heart of the Bad Moms concept lies a truthful social observation: that contemporary mothers are overburdened with domestic expectations. And so, a mere 15 months after the Bad Moms trio hit the schoolyard with their raunchy jokes and screwball antics, A Bad Moms Christmas reaches for franchise territory simply by replacing the PTA with the Christmas holidays and the judgmental supermoms with … well, more judgmental supermoms. There are sequels and then there are merely reprises. read more