Triangle of Sadness is a dark comedy, the hilarity is not rom-com style or even dramedy, but morbid, with an Animal Farm resemblance. A couple of influencers, not yet wealthy but collecting free stuff for a plug, wind up on a cruise that goes downhill. At almost two and half hours long, Triangle of Sadness, directed by Ruben Östlund, delivers snickering humor about the disconnectivity and excess of the wealthy.
The endless banter between Bobby (Billy Eichner) and Aaron (Luke Macfarlane) as they navigate a relationship is hilarious and sweet. Bros is a must-have for any rom-com collection and is one of the best in years.
Raven’s Hollow, directed by Christopher Hatton and written by Christopher Hatton and Chuck Reeves, follows Edgar Allen Poe (William Moseley) as a cadet on a training exercise. Poe and four others encounter a gruesome scene, and Poe convinces the others they need to investigate, leading them to a small town called Raven’s Hollow. The film mixes many others, from Sleepy Hollow to Jeepers Creepers. Raven’s Hollow does deliver an entertaining slice of horror with some scares despite plot holes and a less-than-chilling monster.
Fans of David Bowie will love this film, but there is more here; Moonage Daydream does more than Bowie songs with kaleidoscopic imagery, it allows viewers to see the arc of Bowie’s thoughts and feelings.
Ti West’s Pearl answers the question of what if Dorothy never went to Oz. Feeling like a deranged mix of Wizard of Oz—there is even a scarecrow scene—meets Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Pearl combines a fantasy feel with a riveting turn with Mia Goth as Pearl and shocking bloodshed. X from Ti West was graphic, disturbing slashing horror that analyzed the patriarchal, puritanical restrictions society place on girls and women via a slasher flick.
There are some films based on true stories that you have to research after watching. You need more details because you are screaming, “it cannot end like this.” The Silent Twins is one such film. As soon as it ended, I did not even wait to go home; I was on my phone googling June and Jennifer Gibbons. The story is tragic, mysterious, and even magical, as many describe twin bonds. Directed by Agnieszka Smoczynska with the screenplay by Andrea Seigel, based on the book by Marjorie Wallace, the movie feels uncomfortable as you sympathize with the twins and family but also seethe at the racism touched on in the film, which played a pivotal role in these events.
Australian horror movie Surrogate, directed by David Willing and written by David Willing and Beth King, delves into the paranormal. Mom and nurse Natalie Paxton (Kesti Morassi) winds up ill after trying to save a mysterious woman on her way home. Now, something is wreaking havoc with her life, and Natalie needs to piece together what happened to save her family and herself. Scary moments wrapped in realistic portrayals make Surrogate worthwhile viewing for any horror enthusiast.
Though slow at the start, the tedium vanishes as the stakes ratchet up. Exciting choreography with a “how’d they do that” feel; Day Shift delivers smooth action and comedy thanks to the skillful Jamie Foxx’s comedic acting.
Jordan Peele’s latest outing Nope critiques social media, Hollywood, and the need to frame the impossible on immortal celluloid. Nope is a science fiction story of descendants of the first Black wrangler captured on film attempting to be the first Black family to capture indisputable evidence of aliens on film. Filled with images that bring to mind UFOs, Rorschach, money, and lens, one viewing is not enough to capture all that resides in the movie. Peele is a master at crafting appealing characters, nuance, and multiple meanings in an entertaining package. Nope is no exception.
Shot documentary-style in the beginning, someone comes to interview Brian (David Earl) about his inventions. Brian lives alone in a rural England area, and when the loneliness becomes too much, he decides to build a robot from various parts. He names the robot Charles (Chris Hayward). Though parts drag and there is a syrupy sweetness, Brian and Charles is an adorable tale of a man and his robot with a heartwarming message.