Rinzy Reviews ‘Queen & Slim’ (2019)

Release Date: January 24

Starring: Daniel Kaluuya, Jodie Smith-Turner, Bokeem Woodbine, et al.

It’s always horrific thinking about the state of being black in the US. Every once in a while, a movie like ‘Queen & Slim‘ comes to remind us what racism looks like and some lessons of its harsh consequences.

Slim and Queen’s first date takes an unexpected turn when a policeman pulls them over for a minor traffic violation.

The reality of life is, sometimes, trouble can come knocking, even when you don’t go searching for it.

Queen & Slim are like Bonnie & Clyde with a black spin put on it; but crime isn’t at the center of their story… it’s love. Although on the run from the police, Queen and Slim learn to love each other and life some more.

The movie’s score, cinematography, lightning and direction are all on point. Acting, too. Daniel Kaluuya and Jodie Turner-Smith both bring extra levels of grace to their roles on this job, making it

Spot on execution. Awesome movie. ‘Queen & Slim’ comes highly recommend if you want to feel you sadness and be reminded of how tough it is to be a black man on this Earth. Of course, the movie does have its faults, which I’ll quickly run through.

– For some parts, it did feel like a buddy, road trip movie.
– The main characters kept making numerous stupid choices for people on the run.

These lapses are negligible, though, it’s a terrific movie. You should go see it.

Rinzy’s Rating: 3/5

Directed By: Melina Matsoukas

Rinzy Reviews ‘Les Miserable’ (2018)

Network: BBC

Starring: Dominic West, Lily Collins, David Oyelowo, Olivia Colman, Josh O’Connor, David Bradley, Ellie Bamber, et al.

Putting it mildly, Les Miserable is a story of how much good can still come out of a person, even when the world is being evil.

Jean Valjean (Dominic West) has seen and lived through the harshness of this world to a very high degree, but yet outlandishly refuses to succumb to the high pressures of the dark side. Hot on his heels, through many years on the run, is Inspector Javert (played to near excellence by the very talented David Oyelowo). Throughout the course of the miniseries, Javert harbors a long hatred for Monsieur Valjean; with him claiming, more than once, that he can’t find peace until criminals like Valjean are brought to book. The farce here is that Valjean happens to be the most selfless character on the show, a fact that doesn’t bode so well for Javert when he finally realizes how wrong he’s been about him.

To Jean Valjean, Dominic West brings his A-game (well, at his point in his long career we’d expect nothing less). His facial cues and expressions are top-notch when he’s not speaking, making his character even more relatable.

The rest of the cast are wonderful in their respective roles. Olivia Colman is always a delight to watch, even when she’s playing a despicable wrench of a woman whose reward for living an awful life is rotting in jail. Not the end I was hoping for, but it’ll do.

The set is top-notch, it’s clear a lot of research and work went into the birthing of the show.

The six hours spent Les Miserable is a good investment in quality TV.

PS: This one isn’t a musical, not in the slightest.

Rinzy’s Rating: 3/5

Rinzy Reviews ‘Code 8’ (2019)

Release Date: December 13

Starring: Stephen Amell, Robbie Amell, Sung Kang, et al

You watch this movie and can instantly tell it’s a passion project – the Amell brother’s. 

When one powered man (Robbie) struggles to make ends meet for his sick mom, he turns to a friend (Stephen) who works for a high-powered drug lord (Greg Bryk, Ad Astra), and the two turn to superpowered crime. But they’re on the run from two detectives (Sung Kang and Aaron Abrams) and a scarily high-tech police force that feels like Robocop crossed with District 9. – Collider

Based on the 2016 short film, ‘Code 8’ revisits the familiar story (thanks to the X-Men franchise) of humans afraid of other humans who’ve evolved into something more. The story might be somewhat familiar, but the execution (writing, acting and direction) is undeniably good. The CGI used to bring the powers to life, too, is surprisingly clean for a low-budget movie. This is a commendable piece of art.

The Amell brothers (Robbie and Stephen – Fire Storm and Green Arrow) aren’t strangers to our screens, yet this movie showcases their acting range in a way the Arrowverse never could. After this, I’m excited to see more of Stephen’s career path, post-Arrow.

Rinzy’s Rating: 3/5

Directed by: Jeff Chan

Is ‘Jexi’ Really The Future Of Smartphones?

Release Date: December 27, 2019

Starring: Adam Devine, Alexandra Shipp, Michael Pena, Justin Hartley et al.

If Jexi is the future, I hope it doesn’t come. Just kidding. Everyone knows Jexi is our present alternate reality. Our mobile phones can do pretty advanced stuff already, but I hope they never grow a mind of their own (like in movies like Terminator and Matrix) or become psychopaths like Jexi.

Plot: Phil has a major dependency issue — he’s addicted to his cellphone. He has no friends and his love life is nonexistent. Forced to upgrade to a new phone, Phil soon learns that the latest model comes with Jexi — an artificial intelligence life coach, virtual assistant, and cheerleader. With its help, he begins to get a real life. But as he becomes less dependent on the phone, Jexi starts to morph into a tech nightmare that’s determined to keep Phil all to itself.

Now, while it’s easy to get lost discussing the interesting questions this movie raises about the present and future, it’s important to point out that it’s trash, theatrically speaking. It’s foul-mouthed without purpose and wastes no time throwing its talented cast into the wind.

For the fun of it, I’ll still recommend you see Jexi, though, it’s thought-provoking in a weird way. Can we really do without our smartphones?

Rinzy’s Rating: 2.5/5

Directed by: Jon Lucas, Scott Moore

Rinzy Reviews ‘Ford vs Ferrari’ (2019)

Release Date: November 15

Starring: Christian Bale, Matt Damon, Tracy Letts, Jon Bernthal, Caitriona Balfe, et al.

A political thriller of some sort, Ford vs Ferrari is an extreme Motorsport movie with a heart, based on real life events and people as automobile giants, Ford and Ferrari battle it out for who’s got the bigger balls.

The bone of contention is the 24 hours Le Mans endurance race in France, arguably the biggest racing competition for cars at the time (1960s). Ford had been experiencing decline in car sale numbers and hoped to enter the race to help boast those numbers and also to humiliate Ferrari for turning down a deal that would’ve seen both companies merge in some way, at last minute. To get the job done, Ford enlists the help of Carroll Shelby (Matt Damon) one of the best race-drivers of his time, but is now a car designer and salesman. Shelby in turn enlists Englishman Ken Miles, the best driver he knows.

Miles knows his cars and how to use them to their limit for maximum productivity. With the help of Shelby, they build the GT40 for Ford and would go on to help them achieve all their desires at the tracks.

Ford v Ferrari spends less time beating about the bush and much executing. It’s a car-race action movie also about brotherly love; we could see it when Shelby stakes his company for Miles. It’s also a movie about commitment, good parenting and passion. Unfortunately, Ken Miles never got to achieve the height of the glory he deserved, even after going the extra mile to get Ford the Le Mans win in 1966. He died two months later and, for me, that was the saddest part about the movie.

Is Ford v Ferrari worth a watch?

Most definitely. Even if you aren’t a fan of car racing, you’re sure to enjoy this movie because of its truth – humanity.

Rinzy’s Rating: 4/5

Directed by: Jake Mangold

‘Terminator: Dark Fate’ Should Be The Last One

Release Date: October 23

Staring: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Mackenzie Davies, Linda Hamilton, Natalie Reyes, Gabriel Luna, et al.

At this point, the Terminator franchise can best be described as average, cliche and forced. Hopefully, Dark Fate is the last one, we’ve had enough. Either the powers that be give us a total reboot with a story that isn’t remotely about two Terminators coming from the future to fight over a version of a resistance symbol, or nothing at all.

That said, ‘Terminator: Dark Fate‘ is a pretty enjoyable action flick. Like the other entries in its franchise, this is one, too, is plot driven – solid action sequences and stunts. Although this was a return to the originals in a way, Arnold Schwarzenegger got relegated for most of it and that’s a good thing, means the show can go on without him, probably in the capable hands of Mackenzie Davis.

Terminator v Terminator

Seems Linda Hamilton got even fiercer with age; Sarah Connor is one badass you don’t want to f*ck with. A pity I can’t say the same for Gabriel Luna’s Rev-9 Terminator; he had less personality than a regular iron bar.

Director Tim Miller tried his best to carve a movie we all can love and enjoy, but asides the insane action, Terminator: Dark Fate doesn’t offer anything new. After five movies, that’s now a big deal! Hollywood really needs to learn when to let go.

Rinzy’s Rating: 2.5/5

Directed by: Tim Miller

Rinzy Reviews ‘Frozen 2’ (2019)

Release Date: November 22

Starring: Idina Menzel, Kristen Bell, Evan Rachel Wood, Josh Gad, et al.

After six years, we finally return to the enchanted land of Arendelle, where Anna, Olaf, Kristoff, Sven and Elsa are off to their next adventure. This time, it’s the sins from their parents’ past they try to outrun.

In a move to further expand its own mythology, this sequel sometimes bore resemblance to that of Avatar: The Last Airbender (remember the elements?)

Elsa starts hearing a mysterious siren out of the blues, so she and the her band of merry adventurers go into the unknown forest to uncover unpleasant truths about her family and Arendelle. Their adventure, once again, reinforces themes about sisterhood, love, teamwork and acceptance.

Frozen 2 is a considerably weaker sequel. For starters, none of its songs come close to the high-bar set by the monster-hit that was ‘Let It Go’. Also, there’s the noticeable absence of a worthy villain; what we get are giant rocks without any personality or backstory and another with a semblance of a backstory, but is already dead.

Although it took this long for Disney to commission a sequel, it’s hard to not think of this movie as a cash grab.

Rinzy’s Rating: 3/5

Knives Out: Whodunnit?

Release Date: November 29, 2019

Starring: Ana de Armas, Christopher Plummer, Chris Evans, Craig Daniel, Jamie Lee Curtis, Toni Collette, Katherine Langford, Michael Shannon, et al.

When prominent crime novelist Harlan Thrombey (Christopher Plummer) dies just after his 85th birthday, it’s up to the indefatigable Detective Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) to figure out who did it?

Who doesn’t like a good crime-detective-mystery movie?

I know I do. And I enjoyed watching this one very much.

Director Rian Johnson puts together a stellar ensemble of highly talented actors to bring this story to life. Watching Knives Out, it’s clear he’s one of the many disciples of profilic crime novelist, Agatha Christie, as her blueprint can be seen all over. But even with that familiarity, there’s still enough of Johnson to make Knives Out feel distinct and thoroughly enjoyable.

Knives Out is a murder mystery story alright, but in some ways it’s also a grass to grace story, and in another, a coming of age one.

Harlan Thrombey’s true fate is revealed early, so the bulk of the movie is about watching Daniel Craig in a southern accent trying to figure out which of Thrombey’s large, highly-dependent family members could have murdered him.

You want to know who did it, too, right?

Go see Knives Out today!

PS: I think Chris fuck’n Evans should play more villainous roles.

Rinzy’s Rating: 3.5/5

Directed by: Rian Johnson

Rinzy Reviews ‘Dracula’ (2020)

Network: BBC – Netflix

Release Date – January 1, 2 & 3

Starring: Claes Bang, Dolly Wells, et al

A better title for this miniseries should’ve been ‘The Charismatic Evolution of Count Dracula’ because, a transformation story is what we get in Dracula.

Since his first introduction to the public in Bram Stoker’s 1897 eponymous novel, Count Dracula has enjoyed an ever-increasing popularity with the masses. When report had it that the BBC and Netflix were teaming up to resurrect him once more, the news was very well received because there’s always going to be a new Dracula movie.

Does it live up to expectation?

For a three-part miniseries, things went to shit real fast on Dracula. Each episode runs for about 90 minutes, so that’s basically three movies for the price of one. The episodes boasts of commendable set pieces, intense plotting and some unforgettable dialogues like the one below, courtesy of the world’s most awesome nun (Sister Agatha):

Like many women my age I am trapped in a loveless marriage, maintaining appearances for the sake of a roof over my head

As the story progressed, the miniseries reinvented itself while still telling a central story about the titular, charismatic villain. The nature of this progression allowed the show morph through various amazing locations — a castle, a ship and a graveyard, amongst others — which helped elevate it even at times when the story quality waned.

Claes Bang’s performance as Count Dracula is terrific. He’s menacing, yet charming enough to draw unsuspecting victims in for his next kill. Dolly Wells, too, puts up a good one as Sister Agatha, the nun with trust issues pertaining God-stuff. Weird, right?


The latest peak into the life and times of Count Dracula starts strong but quickly leaves much to be desired. Is that to say it’s terrible? NO!

Rinzy’s Rating: 3/5