Reviews
Review: Won't You Be My Neighbor? Print E-mail
Friday, 15 June 2018 16:18

 

 
Rating:  No Zs
 
By:  Amy Elizondo
 
Summary:  This documentary showcases Fred Rogers’ life’s work on the childhood classic, Mister Rogers' Neighborhood.
 
The Good:  Many people have probably wondered if Fred Rogers was, in real life, the way he portrayed himself in Mister Rogers' Neighborhood.  Won't You Be My Neighbor proves he was that and much, much more.  From his humble beginnings and throughout his entire life, Fred Rogers cared about everyone, especially children.  It is apparent through the documentary that he lived for the children and wanted them to know they were special and loved.  He knew that television was a medium that could benefit children greatly if used properly.  One of the best things about Won't You Be My Neighbor is that it gives audiences a peek behind the camera.  Through interviews of his close friends and family, and some interviews of Mr. Rogers himself, we can see the type of person that he really was.  He was someone who was an advocate for children.
 
The Bad:  There really isn’t a bad thing to say about this film.  Clocking in at 94 minutes, I do wish the documentary had been longer.  I could have easily sat through at least another half hour of Mr. Rogers’ life and stories.  
 
The Ugly:  Anyone who grew up watching Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, and even those who didn’t, can find Won't You Be My Neighbor to be a pleasant delight.  We can see how much Mr. Rogers wanted to teach children about every day things in life, and there are still many lessons to be taught today.  His legacy lives on and shows that we could all use a neighbor like him.

 

 
 
Film In Austin’s Review Grading Scale
 
No Zs – A solid, outstanding movie; there wasn’t any snoozing in this movie
 
Z – Good movie, sometimes the story may be lacking in some area, but it’s still recommended; only fell asleep for a quarter of the movie
 
ZZ – Average, entertaining at parts, it may be worth seeing, but you will probably want to wait and rent it; fell asleep for half of the film
 
ZZZ – Very weak where entertainment, plot, realism, development and other vital elements are missing; fell asleep for a third of the movie
 
ZZZZ – Very poor to the point that you will only recommend for your family and friends “not to see it;” fell asleep right when the movie began and slept through the whole thing.  Well, you will wish you had spent that time sleeping
 
 
Review: Hereditary Print E-mail
Saturday, 09 June 2018 09:13

Rating: No Zs

By Jeremy Martinez

Plot: After the passing of her mother, Annie (played by Toni Collette) fights to maintain control over her and her family's life as it steadily falls apart. The more Annie finds out about her mother's secretive past, the darker and more horrifying Annie's life becomes. Annie and her family's lives hang in the balance as the answers to the past lead to a supernatural and scary future.

The Good: I'm calling it now, Hereditary will become one of the top horror classics in years to come. Hereditary is a slow-burning, supernatural, horror flick that steadily, and then quite violently, crescendos into something sinisterly anew. One of the more "fresh" horror films I've seen in a few years, Hereditary starts with a familiar premise - and then takes us into unexplored territory. combining the unsettling "real" horror of family tragedy along with the supernatural. The movie, like a lingering ghost, latches on, feeding into your fears and builds into an amazingly creepy final act - an act that I am still haunted by, in a good way.

The Bad: Given that I may as well have been possessed by a Hereditary fan boy thus far in this review, to really say anything too negative would require a proper exorcism beforehand. I will say, being that this is a slow-burner of a film, horror fans of the more fast-paced "jump scare" flicks might not find this film as satisfying. Fans of older genre flicks, such as Rosemary's Baby (1968), The Omen (1976), or even The Exorcist (1973), will find some familiarity in Hereditary, but the demographic for this film is not as far reaching as last year's It or Get Out. If you don't love all that is horror, you may take this into consideration...though I'd dare you to go watch this anyways.

The Ugly: From beginning to end, Hereditary is packed full of creepy imagery and iconography that will have you guessing until the final act. I found myself laughing at moments, and on the edge of my seats during other moments. Hereditary is one of those rare horror films that delivers on all fronts - and in such a way that audiences will be talking about for years to come. Find your bravery, and buy yourself a ticket to see Hereditary in theaters as soon as you can.   

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Film In Austin’s Review Grading Scale

No Zs – A solid, outstanding movie; there wasn’t any snoozing in this movie

Z – Good movie, sometimes the story may be lacking in some area, but it’s still recommended; only fell asleep for a quarter of the movie

ZZ – Average, entertaining at parts, it may be worth seeing, but you will probably want to wait and rent it; fell asleep for half of the film

ZZZ – Very weak where entertainment, plot, realism, development and other vital elements are missing; fell asleep for a third of the movie

ZZZZ – Very poor to the point that you will only recommend for your family and friends “not to see it;” fell asleep right when the movie began and slept through the whole thing. Well, you will wish you had spent that time sleeping

 
Review: The Seagull Print E-mail
Friday, 01 June 2018 01:12

 

Rating:  ZZZZ

By: Amy Elizondo
 
Summary:  One summer, actress Irina Arkadina visits her son and brother at their country estate. She brings along her lover, who becomes infatuated with Nina, a girl from a neighboring estate.
 
The Good:  The amount of talent in this film is surreal, especially the powerhouse of female talent.  The main character, Irina, is played by Annette Bening (The Kids Are Alright, 20th Century Women).  She stars alongside Saoirse Ronan (Brooklyn, Lady Bird) and Elisabeth Moss (Mad Men, The Handmaid's Tale).  It is clear that each of these women possess an extraordinary gift for acting, unique to each of them.  When all three are on screen at the same time, it is difficult to look away.
 
The Bad:  All of the actors in the world are not enough to save this movie from the true snooze fest that it is.  I spent most of the first 45 minutes of the film trying to keep myself awake.  Even taking into account that this movie is based on a Russian play of the same name by Anton Chekhov, it still left me just as uninterested as the play most likely would have.  A lot of the scenes took a long time to build up and the film just felt very slow in general.  I was also confused by the direction in which the movie was taken, because I know it’s based on a Russian play; it takes place in Russia and all the characters have Russian names, but everyone is speaking with an American accent.  More so, I just did not feel as though the characters were deep enough to truly connect to them.
 
The Ugly:  The Seagull is the type of film that someone will either really enjoy, or they will absolutely not care for it at all.  Maybe this play resonated well with audiences in its prime, however, it has not aged well nor transferred well onto the big screen.  Unless you are a true Chekhov fan, or a big fan of any of the actresses listed above, you can (and should) save this film for DVD, if that.


 



Film In Austin’s Review Grading Scale
 
No Zs – A solid, outstanding movie; there wasn’t any snoozing in this movie
 
Z – Good movie, sometimes the story may be lacking in some area, but it’s still recommended; only fell asleep for a quarter of the movie
 
ZZ – Average, entertaining at parts, it may be worth seeing, but you will probably want to wait and rent it; fell asleep for half of the film
 
ZZZ – Very weak where entertainment, plot, realism, development and other vital elements are missing; fell asleep for a third of the movie
 
ZZZZ – Very poor to the point that you will only recommend for your family and friends “not to see it;” fell asleep right when the movie began and slept through the whole thing.  Well, you will wish you had spent that time sleeping
 
 
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