Rinzy Reviews ‘Jonathan’ (2018)

Release Date: Nov. 16, 2018

Starring: Ansel Elgort, Suki Waterhouse, Patricia Clarkson, et al.

***

Two brothers who couldn’t be any much different than they already are have just one thing in common – the body they inhabit. That’s the story of Jonathan and Jon.

When the trailer for this movie first broke out, the common reaction I got from a lot of my followers was that Jonathan’s a rip-off of the 2017 hit movie Split. I can’t disagree more.

Though there are two personalities in one body, it’s Jonathan who gets to really shine, as the story’s told mostly from his PoV. He’s the bossy one; the one most invested in seeing their lives move forward without unwarranted interruptions. For the better part of time, Jon’s cool with the arrangement. Everything changes when Jonathan finds out his brother has a girlfriend (Elena) behind his back. Anger, betrayal, sadness and ego takes center stage when the relationship has to come to an end because of their no girlfriend rule.

Jonathan’s a pretty cool standalone movie, which puts those comparing it to the more intense Split wrong on so many levels.

As always, there are lapses here and there which the story could’ve done better without, especially in the events that fastened Jonathan and Elena’s relationship. I saw no reason why Jonathan would choose to replace the vacuum his brother created with the very girl that caused them to stop talking. It didn’t make much sense to me. Elena, I could understand, even though a believer in their story, would want the spitting image of her boyfriend back in her life. So, all my cusses are being directed at Jonathan who should’ve known better.

The theme, music, cinematography, editing and other related stuffs were decent. The bulk of attention for entertainment in this movie can only be gotten through the story, which I reiterate was decent. Sorry if you were expecting more.

Side note:

1. I’m tired of movies using woman as a weapon to wedge war between men. Really tired. 🙄

Directed by: Bill Oliver

Rinzy’s Rating: 3/5

Rinzy Reviews ‘Peppermint’ (2018)

Release Date: Sept. 7, 2018

Budget/ Box-Office: $25M/ $48.8M

Starring: Jenifer Garner, John Ortiz, John Gallagher Jr., Juan Pablo Raba, et al.

***

Some times, the justice system is unreliable. In movies, this happens more often than not.

Peppermint tells the story of a woman (Riley North) who witnesses the murder of her husband and only child, and has to watch the perpetrators slip, unwhisked, through a corrupt justice system. It’s only fitting that our heroine disappears for five years and returns as a badass vigilante to make all of them pay.

That’s as simple as the plot is. And the movie wastes no time in diving right into the action. In fact, the first scene we’re shown of our heroine is her blowing an unwilling man’s head off. And as if that wasn’t shocking enough, we’re taken back five years for a proper backstory lecture on why she’s the way she is now.

Peppermint is the perfect fantasy story of how the world should work. How every bad deed shouldn’t go unpunished. An eye for an eye or karma as most call it. But the truth is, the world isn’t like that. At least, not all the time.

Jenifer Garner’s Riley North tries hard to not come across as the conventional heroine, but the truth is there’s nothing special about about her. It isn’t for lack of quality in Garner’s portrayal, I thought it was a decent one, after all, this isn’t the first time she’s starring as an action movie star. It’s just in her motivations.

Every one’s driven by something: love, joy, anger, pain, loss. In the case of Riley, it’s the loss of her family that drives her; it’s the very reason why a woman with a mundane life transforms into a brutal killer. Revenge is the only thing in her mind, and she goes to great lengths to get it.

Peppermint is a decent movie. You might have a good time watching it depending on your level of taste in action movies.

Directed by: Pierre Morel

Rinzy’s Rating: 3/5

Rinzy Reviews ‘The Predator’ (2018)

Release Date: Sept. 14, 2018

Budget/ Box-Office: $88M/ $160.5M

Starring: Boyd Holbrook, Keegan Michael Key, Olivia Munn, Thomas Jane, Alfie Allen, Sterling K. Brown, et al.

***

The Predator follows a young boy who accidentally summons more aliens to earth. It’s up to his father to right them off. 


Thing is, The Predator tries so hard to be something great, but it ends up being an elaborate mess that shouldn’t have existed in the first place. 

It’s funny that the deadly predators return, and, this time, it’s up to a bunch of PTSD-afflicted soldiers to save the day. The combination of characters is supposed to be hilarious, but they end up being a bunch of men sharing offensive, dry jokes. 

I don’t have much to say about this movie, other than it sucks hard!

Honestly, The Predator is so silly it shouldn’t even exist. If it isn’t Sterling K. Brown’s constant smoldering that sets you off, it’ll be the one-dimensioned protagonist in Holbrook’s Agent McKenna, or the confusing twist that’s the Predator’s motivation that does the job. Whichever it is, you leave this movie feeling bad cause you know you’re never getting that wasted time of your life back. 

 Directed by: Shane Black

Rinzy’s Rating: 2/5

Rinzy Reviews ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ (2018)

Release Date: Aug. 15, 2018

Budget/ Box-Office: $30M/ $235.1M

Starring: Constance Wu, Henry Golding, Gemma Chan, Lisa Lu, Nico Santos, Awkafina, et al.

***

It’s the glitch, glam and humour that sells Crazy Rich Asians. Never before have you seen Asians in this light. It’s a huge deviation what what soap operas and taekwondo has been feeding us, and that’s its greatest strength.

Rachel Chu is happy to accompany her longtime boyfriend, Nick, to his best friend’s wedding in Singapore. She’s also surprised to learn that Nick’s family is extremely wealthy and he’s considered one of the country’s most eligible bachelors. Thrust into the spotlight, Rachel must now contend with jealous socialites, quirky relatives and something far, far worse — Nick’s disapproving mother. 

Honestly, there’s nothing special about Crazy Rich Asians’ plot. It’s a basic story. Rich boy meets poor girl and falls in love. His family says no at first, but later come around when they realize how awesome they are. It’s that cliche. But the movie immerses you into its very believable world almost as soon as it begins courtesy of its exotic production. The producers spare no expense in procuring colorful entertainment: props, foods, clothes and the FOOD! Oh Lord, the mere sight of those cuisines left me craving Asian meals so desperately. 

Singapore is so beautiful. I haven’t been there, so I can’t say if the movie does justice to it, but the many locations displayed in this movie (Samara Island, Rawa Island, International waters, etc.) leave you desperately wanting a vacation. 

Nick Yung (Henry Golding) and Rachael Chu (Constance Wu) make an interesting romantic pair. It’s a pity Nick’s mom, Eleanor Yung (Michelle Yeoh) refuses to practice the very Christianity the movie shows her professing in her first scene, and stands as a stumbling block to her son’s happiness. Even though she’s shown to finally come around, it’s mostly because she’s afraid of losing her son and not because she truly believes Rachael is worthy of her love. I hope this angle is explored more in the planned sequel.

Any movie capable of making my feel mushy I owe largely to the leads and their Chemistry. In this, Crazy Rich Asians gets it right, and I can only hope its planned sequel arrives sooner than the projected 2020 year. 


My favorite things about this movie:

1. Scene – Catch this, you gold digging bitch writing on the wall.

2. Character –  Awkafina’s Goh Peik Lin… Every scene with her is gold.

3. Song – Elvis Presley’s I can’t help myself falling in love with you.

4. Quotes

a. “You kind of look like a slutty Ebola virus.”
b. “I’m tired of not having anything I do matter, including having an affair.” 🙄

c. “It’s not my fault you don’t feel like a man. I can’t make you into something you’re not.”

Directed by: Jon M. Chu

Rinzy’s Rating: 4/5

Rinzy Reviews ‘Hotel Artemis’ (2018)

Release Date: Aug. 10, 2018.

Starring: Jodie Foster, Sterling K. Brown, Dave Bautista, Sofia Boutella, Jeff Goldblum, et al.

***

In the year 2028, Los Angeles is thrown into a constant state of rioting that’s fast spreading as people protest the privatization of water companies. Crime rate is up and so is the resultant injured persons in need of the unique service Hotel Artemis provides. 

 Jodie Foster plays nurse, a woman who’s suffered great losses – her son, medical license, happiness amongst many other things. She’s an embittered woman now, one who masks her pain and numerous anxieties behind snarky remarks, nasty one-liners and a headphone that plays what always sounds like depressing music. She’s the one in charge of Hotel Artemis, using technological advancements as extra hands to patch up patients in need of her service. The clinic is everything to her; a cage used to cope with her agoraphobic condition, and the only thing that’s ensured its survival over the last 22 years are the strict rules guiding its business helped enforced by her ever loyal orderly Everest (Dave Bautista). 

 The hotel almost falls apart in one night. The universe decides to bring all the stray arcs of the nurse’s life to a climax, and she has her hand full dealing with all the many idiosyncratic characters loitering her clinic with their own selfish agendas.

As things get even more heated nurse’s number one rule becomes impossible to maintain: the rule that states guests must never kill other guests. Even the nurse gets tempted to indulge when she gets the answer to a personal tragedy she’s been living with for the last 23 years. 

 Hotel Artemis is a simple movie. It finds a way to tell an intimate story about a hotel and its occupants for one night even when the rest of the world has descended into chaos, which is one of the many reasons I like it.

The supporting characters are decent; some, like Sterling K. Brown and Sofia Boutella, having story-arcs that allows them shine more than others. Even though Hotel Artemis boasts some familiar faces known for good works over the years, they aren’t fully utilized. How do you get Jeff Goldblum in a movie and relegate him to a story-arc that’s mostly off screen? 🙄

I enjoyed watching Hotel Artemis, and I’m sure you will too.

Directed by: Drew Pearce

Rinzy’s Rating: 3.5/5

Rinzy Reviews ‘The Hate U Give’ (2018)

Release Date: Oct. 19, 2018.

Budget/ Box-Office: $23M/ $26.3M

Starring: Amandla Stenberg, Regina Hall, Russell Hornsby, KJ Apa, Issa Rae, Common, Anthonie Mackie, et al.

***

The Hate U Give is one of those few movies that gets you thinking about your purpose in life, and how you can make meaningful impact in the lives of the people around you. 

 Starr Carter is a 16-year-old black girl who lives in the fictional, mostly poor black neighborhood of Garden Heights, but attends an affluent, predominantly white private school, Williamson Prep. After a gun goes off at a party Starr is attending one weekend, Starr is driven home by her childhood best friend, Khalil. On the way home, they are stopped by a white police officer. The officer has Khalil, who is black, exit the car; while outside the car, Khalil reaches inside his car via the open driver-side window to check in on Starr, and picks up a brush. The officer, thinking Khalil picked up a gun, fires three shots into Khalil, killing him.

There’s something about a movie that preaches a timely message in an extraordinary way; that stuff is rare these days. So, when a masterpiece like The Hate U Give comes along, I can’t help but rave on-and-on about how beautiful it is.

In a world where some people don’t value human lives as much as they should; a world where racism and bigotry is the order of the day, movies like this, where the consequences of what happens with the hates we give is preached, is very much needed. 

 Amandla Stenberg is phenomenal as Starr Carter. Her dexterity in bringing to life the many emotions running through her character’s veins is applaudable. She truly is one of the few perfect castings there is in recent memory. But it’s her father, Maverick Carter (Russell Hornsby), who’s the real star for me. Were this a TV show I’d put him side-by-side Jack Pearson (This Is Us) as my favorite fictional daddy. The way wise words fall out of his mouth at per second billings make parenting seem so easy.

I also love the colour distinction used to depict the two different lives Starr lives; warm and bright for Garden Heights and cold for Williamson. Both distinctions helped me ease me into Starr’s mood swings as she changes location, making me better understand the character.

 The THUG life, is The Hate U Give. Theres enough of that already. Let us preach love!

Favorite scenes:

1. Chris meeting Starr’s father for the first time.

2. When those black guys gave Mav’s kids and two white guys a lift away from the riot.

3. Sekani pulling his dad’s gun on King while the police look on, confused. You Hate U Give Little Infants Effs Everyone.

Directed By: George Tillman Jr.

Rinzy’s Rating: 4.5/5

Rinzy Reviews ‘Teen Titans Go To The Movies’ (2018)

Release Date: July 27, 2018

Budget/Box-Office: $10M/ $51.9M

Starring: Greg Cipee, Scott Menville, Khary Payton, Tara Strong, Hynden Walch, et al.

***

With effortless humor Teen Titans Go To The Movies wins you over almost as soon as it begins. It’s an animated superhero comedy film with a strong message about rejection and self-acceptance. 


In a DC world where superhero success is measure by the ability of characters to get their own movies, Robin’s troubled that he won’t be seen as anything other than a sidekick, hence won’t ever get his own movie. He and the other Titans try so many things to correct this impression, including going back in time twice to erase and replace all the other heroes of the big league standing as competition, before settling to get their own archnemesis in the person of Slade Wilson, whom they hilariously refer to as Deadpool. 😂

With each mission comes an adventure a great lesson. 

Teen Titans Go To The Movies is a perfect movie for kids; through music and perfectly timed, mindful jokes the true message of the movie’s unveiled. It’s one of those movies you don’t need to be around while your children watch as you’re sure they’re in safe hands, and would come out with a renewed belief in friendship, trust, forgiveness, and what it means to be successful.

Side note

1. Stan Lee’s cameo was hilarious even though it lasted for just seconds.

2. The BvS caricature “Martha” scene was hilarious.  

Directed by: Peter Rida Michael and Aaron Horvath

Rinzy’s rating: 4/5

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