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Cinemaholics Review: Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom

fallen kingdom

This week on Cinemaholics, I’m joined by special guest Jake Holland and my co-host Will Ashton to review Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. Is the “fallen kingdom” in question the state of the Jurassic Park franchise at this point? Well, according to the box office, definitely not. We had a great conversation about the series as a whole and leading up to this new film from J.A. Bayona, and we’ve even included a brief section for spoilers (with fair warning of course).

We opened this week’s show with some Off-Topics, including a rundown of Incredibles 2 breaking all kinds of box office records, plus how Solo: A Star Wars Story‘s utter failure at the box office has reportedly led to Disney and Lucasfilm putting future standalone Star Wars movies on hold. We also get into a fascinating segment about Gotti, which includes everything from a marketing campaign targeted at film critics to some seriously shady number crunching going on at Rotten Tomatoes. You’ll have to hear this one to believe it.

Last, we get into Mini Reviews as usual, but only a few this week. I give my thoughts on Luke Cage Season 2, which just dropped on Netflix, as well as the new romantic comedy Set It Up. And Will finally saw Thoroughbreds, one of my favorites of 2018.

Question for you: Aside from the original, which is your favorite Jurassic Park movie?

Go on…Cinemaholics Review: Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom

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Cinemaholics Podcast Review: Tully

tully

Tully, directed by Jason Reitman and written by Diablo Cody, the duo behind Juno and Young Adult. This new comedy-drama film about motherhood stars Charlize Theron, Mackenzie Davis, Ron Livingston, and Mark Duplass. And it’s definitely one worth watching.

For mini reviews, we covered a pretty diverse list of new releases, many of them on Netflix. There’s John Mulaney’s new comedy special on Netflix, Kid Gorgeous at Radio City, which is already making some headlines for its pervasive political humor. Dear White People just dropped its second season on Netflix, and in this episode I lay out my case for why you should get caught all the way up on this biting, wickedly smart show.

Our guest Abby just watched the new Howard’s End mini series (which is about to hit Amazon streaming), based on the 90s film of the same name. Will saw the new Adam Sandler movie The Week Of on Netflix and calls it the best of the Sandler-Netflix movies (not counting Meyerowitz Stories). And I finished the show out with a mini review for RBG, a new documentary about the life and career of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, which is premiered at Sundance.

Question for you: What should we review and/or talk about on the show next week? There aren’t a lot of major releases, so any ideas are welcome! Next week’s wide releases include Breaking In and The Life of The Party.

Go on…Cinemaholics Podcast Review: Tully

Cinemaholics Review: A Wrinkle in Time and Thoroughbreds

wrinkle

On the show this week, Will Ashton and I review A Wrinkle in Time, the new Disney family film based on the classic novel. The film opened at around Disney’s box office expectations, second only to Black Panther (which is still breaking records), but it’s become a divisive topic among critics and fans who found the adaptation disappointing while also championing the film’s representation.

For the most part, Will and I are on the same page with Wrinkle. It’s complicated. Later in the show, we take a look at Thoroughbreds, plus we opened this week’s episode with some discussion about the Oscars and ongoing coverage over at SXSW Film Festival. It’s a useful talk if you’re curious about some upcoming genre films set to release in 2018, just remember to take these early film reviews with a grain of salt. The rest of this week’s reviews include Atlanta Season 2, Jessica Jones Season 2, and Will Ashton’s reactions to Love, Simon (which guest Kimber Myers reviewed for us last week).

Question for you: Where do you stand on A Wrinkle in Time?

Go on…Cinemaholics Review: A Wrinkle in Time and Thoroughbreds

Review: ‘House Of Cards,’ Season 2

One heartbeat away from the presidency and not a single vote cast in my name. Democracy is so overrated…

Frank Underwood (played by the talented Kevin Spacey) utters these words in episode two of the second season of House of Cards, a political thriller that took us all by surprise. While being sworn in for winning the vice presidency after a full season of political  scheming involving lies, betrayals and even murder, Underwood sets his sights on the road ahead.

Season 2 starts with an episode that literally stuns. I obviously can’t spoil the decisive action and unexpected plot movement that sets the tone for this season, but I can almost guarantee that fans of the show will undoubtedly be hooked.

My laments about the first season were few but potent. One too many episodes were imbalanced scripts compared to the ones surrounding them, as they failed to deliver the same heart-pounding storytelling on a consistent basis.

A few episodes in, I can safely say that this has been somewhat remedied. Now that the characters are settling comfortably within their roles on Capitol Hill and beyond, we’re finally done with exposition and ready to fully sink our teeth into the motivations and struggles that plague these complicated faces.

Robin Wright in particular provides new material to her cold character, especially when confronting past turmoil in episode two. We also see a new side of Frank Underwood when it comes to the complex passion and love he has for Claire. It’s not rooted in anything apparently sexual, but it still contains the same mad devotion and loyalty you would expect from an honest-to-god romance.

Their dynamic alone is enough of a reason to tune in, but then you enter the subtle paradigms and nuances that litter the script, especially with new faces joining the cast in the form of Jackie, Frank’s hopeful replacement for Majority Whip. She is already shaping to be the next Frank Underwood in terms of her ruthlessness and ability to manipulate anyone, no matter how close they are to her.

What truly works for the script this time around is that it’s not choosing to rely too heavily on the sub-plot surrounding the conspiracy and suspicion around Frank Underwood. It’s there, and people are still catching on slowly, but the titular house of cards still feels pretty secure early in the season, which will be necessary if the script hopes to contain itself as we watch Frank Underwood continue his rise to power in the most corrupt way possible.

House of Cards Season 2? Definitely worth watching if you were at least amused at the first season. I would even go as far as to say that critics of the previous episodes may find something here that was missing before, as many good shows tend to mature for the better as they enter their second round.

And House of Cards is no exception.

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