More movies I’ve seen either in theaters, or streaming.
Based on the Disney theme park attraction, but not following the story line of said attraction. Lily Houghton (Emily Blunt) and her brother MacGregor (Jack Whitehall) steal an ancient artifact that is said to lead to a fabled Tree of Life in the Amazon jungle with the ability to cure anything. The duo head there and hire skipper Frank (Dwayne Johnson) to help them find it. Of course it doesn’t take long before others come searching as well, and things take a supernatural turn. A fun ride (see what I did there?) that is entertaining and enjoyable. And, being a Disney movie, you’ll probably be able to predict the ending…but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
The Suicide Squad
Not to be confused with the previous “Suicide Squad” (without “the” in the title), this…reboot I guess?…is helmed by writer and director James Gunn of “Guardians of the Galaxy” fame, among others. Reprising their roles from the previous iteration are Margot Robbie as supervillain Harley Quinn, Viola Davis as the shady head of the squad Amanda Waller, and Joel Kinnaman as Colonel Rick Flag. This time the villains are recruited into the squad to assist the US government. It seems former ally island nation of Corto Maltese has had a bit of a coup, and now someone needs to head into the now hostile nation to destroy US secrets left behind by the former rulers of the island. With lots of action, twists and turns, and good performances, you should give this flick a view. If the original let you down, this new vision will likely make up for it.
Not to be confused with many other movies sharing the title, this is horror director James Wan’s picture, originally to be released in 2020 until…well, you know. In this film, after a home invasion housewife Madison (Annabelle Wallis) is plagued by visions of a man committing horrific murders only to find out the murders actually happened. She quickly realizes it is the same man who broke into her home, but must solve the mystery of not only who he is, but why she has this connection to him. I normally really like James Wan’s films. Known for the “Saw” series, “Insidious,” and even “Aquaman,” Wan certainly knows how to make entertaining movies. This one is no exception. It is entertaining for most of its runtime, but a few parts fell flat for me. Mostly in the third act with some ridiculously over the top scenes. I also felt there were some serious issues that needed to be dealt with by the end that simply weren’t. It just sort of ended as though the makers had no more ideas for what to do with the story or how to bring it to a close. If you can put up with that, the preceding time is an interesting take on a topic you may have seen before, but done here fairly well.
Another film that was supposed to release a year or so earlier, “Free Guy” is a silly, slapstick comedy about a video game character, played by Ryan Reynolds, becoming intelligent/sentient and wondering why his fellow game NPCs (non player characters) aren’t experiencing similar epiphanies. Flipping back and forth between the real world makers of the game and the in-game virtual world, the movie even features cameos by many famous online streamers and YouTubers. Also has lots of pop culture references, especially to actual video games. Check your computer savvy brain and just go with it, and you should have a fun time. (And, presumably, the studio has already green lit a sequel because the film has been so well received.)