Drew’s Movie Reviews Turns 7! My Fave Five New Movies I Watched in Year 7

Hello, friends!

Drew’s Movie Reviews has turned seven! That right, yesterday was my blogiversary which means I have been blogging for a full seven years now. Where does the time go? To celebrate, over the last few days I have posted reviews of all the Vacation films, beginning from the 1983 original to the 2015 “reboot.” If you missed any of those reviews, here are the links to those posts:

Vacation
European Vacation
Christmas Vacation
Vegas Vacation
Vacation (2015)

Lastly, to close out my blogging year, here are my five favorite films I saw during my seventh year of blogging:

Good Boys movie poster5) Good Boys

When I first saw the trailer for Good Boys, the first thing I thought of was Superbad but with elementary school kids. And being a big fan of Superbad, I was instantly sold. This is a very crude film. When I say it’s like Superbad but with kids, I mean the sense of humor and language is exactly like Superbad so watching young kids curse like sailors might not be for everyone. However, that’s one of the reasons that this film was so funny to me. Mix that with their naivete and you have a mix for some outrageous and humorous moments. All of the young actors did great and I was laughing from start to finish.

Knives Out movie poster4) Knives Out

After Star Wars: The Last Jedi, I was weary of watching another Rian Johnson film. I’m so glad I gave Knives Out a chance because it was one of the most refreshing films to be released in 2019. This movie is filled with twists and turns. When you think it’s going to zig, it zags. From the time the mystery is introduced to the final scenes, Johnson keeps you guessing. Knives Out breaks the conventions of what you expect from a murder mystery film and that’s part of the enjoyment. On top of that, the cast is top notch. Everyone is great in their roles and it’s nearly impossible to pick a favorite. A second or even third watch is worth it just to better see how each of the pieces are laid out throughout the film and better appreciate how it’s all brought together at the end.

Uncut Gems movie poster3) Uncut Gems

Adam Sandler is often pegged as a comedic actor, so when I saw he was going to be in a more dramatic role, I wanted to check it out. At the center of Uncut Gems is Sandler’s Howard Ratner, a New York City jeweler with a gambling problem and an overall terrible person. Most movies give some sort of redeeming quality to their main character so the audience can root for them. Uncut Gems does not. From the get-go, Howard is set up as a protagonist that is nearly impossible to get behind. The entire movie I was expecting the worst to happen, and this is where my enjoyment of this film comes from. I found myself constantly on edge watching and waiting as Howard’s life goes from bad to worst and he continuously makes bad decisions. And the entire time Sandler is in top form, maybe the best he’s ever been. Uncut Gems is an unusual film but that’s part of its disturbing charm.

Ready or Not movie poster2) Ready or Not

I went to see Ready or Not in the theater on a whim. As it turns out, it was a good whim to follow. I would be lying if I didn’t say that part of the reason this film has ranked so high is from the surprise factor. Ready or Not did not receive much advertising or fanfare before its release so I knew little about it going in and I don’t blame you if you missed this one on its release. If you haven’t seen it yet, you’re missing out on a fantastic dark comedy horror. Despite a talented cast around her, Samara Weaving manages to carry the film as the latest member of the Le Domas family. I constantly found myself both sitting on the edge of my seat and laughing at this dark comedy. What an unusual and fascinating combination.

Eighth Grade movie poster1) Eighth Grade

Surprisingly, Eighth Grade was the only film not released in the last twelve months that made it on this list. I guess this last year was not good for me in terms of watching great movies at home. I chose this film for my first entry of the Ultimate 2010s Blogathon to serve as a snapshot of the decade. It was my first time watching it (hence why it’s on this list) and I was blown away. I thoroughly believe this is the best coming-of-age film I have seen. This movie is so raw and accurately captures the pressures of being a teen. Kudos to Elsie Fisher for giving such an outstanding performance that I did not expect from someone her age. For the second year in a row, a coming-of-age film has made my list of essential watches. Not too shabby.


Year seven is now officially closed! Thank you for all the support over the last year! I appreciate all of the comments, likes, and views. I wouldn’t keep blogging if it wasn’t for all of you. 😀 Thank you for being here with me on this journey and I can’t wait to see what the next year brings for Drew’s Movie Reviews.

Follow DMR on Facebook, Twitter, and Letterboxd to stay up to date with my cinematic adventure.

Stay safe. Stay healthy. Stay positive. Stay weird.

Until next time, cheers!

Knives Out Review

Knives Out movie posterSynopsis
Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) investigates the death of mystery author Harlan Thrombey (Christopher Plummer).

Review
I have a weird relationship with Rian Johnson. I’ve only seen two of his films: Looper, which I enjoyed a lot, and Star Wars: The Last Jedi, which I have very mixed feelings about. The trailers for Knives Out definitely did their job of piquing my interest. So despite my feelings for his last movie, I thought I would check it out his latest endeavor. Johnson has one crazy imagination! Knives Out is filled to the brim with twists and excitement.

This film is a classic whodunit, something you would expect to play out like a game of Clue. Normally, the reveal about the murder is the final twist at the end. This movie separates itself from other murder mysteries by revealing the events of the murder in question at the end of the first act, which was much earlier than I expected. However, even after these events are revealed, it still kept my attention. The rest of the movie becomes a cat-and-mouse chase which maintains the intrigue and left me on the edge of my seat, constantly saying “oh, no,” but in a good way, under my breath on many occasions. Because the film explained the murder early on and shifts from a classic mystery to more of a thriller, the final twist felt like a let down. It was a wheels-within-wheels type reveal that wasn’t quite as hard-hitting as Johnson probably wanted it to be.

Despite this small gripe with the story, this movie is well written. As I said, even after the tonal shift partway through the film, it was still exciting. By the end of the film, all of the breadcrumbs that were laid out are cleaned up. Also, many lines that sound like throwaway comments have meaning later on, so pay attention closely or you might just miss something. Of course, this captivating script is only made better by such a fantastic cast. Everyone is clearly having a good time. Ana de Armas is arguably not as big of an actress as much of the rest of the cast but she holds her own when sharing the screen with the likes of Daniel Craig, Chris Evens, Jamie Lee Curtis or any of the rest. She is surely an actress to be watching out for.

I thought Knives Out was GREAT 😀 I wasn’t sure what to expect from Rian Johnson, a director with whom I have a love-hate relationship, but I think it’s safe to say at this point in time, I like more of his films than I dislike. Your classic whodunit script gets a twist and you won’t want to take your eyes off of the screen. The well-written script and excellent cast make Knives Out a thrilling ride from start to finish.

Trailer

Cast & Crew
Rian Johnson – Director / Writer
Nathan Johnson – Composer

Daniel Craig – Benoit Blanc
Ana de Armas – Marta Cabrera
Chris Evans – Ransom Drysdale
Jamie Lee Curtis – Linda Dysdale
Michael Shannon – Walt Thrombey
Don Johnson – Richard Drysdale
Toni Collette – Joni Thrombey
Katherine Langford – Meg Thrombey
Jaeden Martell – Jacob Thrombey
Riki Lindhome – Donna Thrombey
Christopher Plummer – Harlan Thrombey
K Callan – Greatnana Wanetta
LaKeith Stanfield – Lieutenant Elliott
Noah Segan – Trooper Wagner
Edi Patterson – Fran

Trailer Round-Up – 7/8/19

Jumanji: The Next Level

Spies in Disguise trailer #2

Knives Out

Shaun the Sheep Movie: Farmageddon trailer #2

Mulan (2020) teaser trailer


Which of these films are you excited to see?

Entries for the Christmas in July 2019 Blogathon are due at the end of this week! To find out more, check out the post here.