Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton – Week of March 15, 2021

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton

Week of March 15, 2021

Zach Snyder’s Justice League
Rated R for some language and violence
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 78% at time of writing
Streaming on HBO Max

As Zach Snyder was deep into filming 2017’s Justice League, the death of his daughter forced him to quit the production and the studio hired The Avengers director Joss Whedon to finish the job. But as history shows, fans hated the film and what Whedon did with it. But when Zach Snyder expressed interest in completing his vision – the fans went nuts and HBO Max gave him a platform. With tons of reshoots and a story that is very different from the original, we now have more than just a new cut – but rather a brand new film with snippets from the forgettable first. At four hours in length, the story is much more complex and the villain Steppenwolf, while largely the same, has a new look and answers to an even worse baddie named Darkseid, who will most like make a future appearance in the universe. At this massive length, the film is certainly excessive and majorly indulgent. But then again so were the Avengers films, especially Endgame. So its flaws are largely forgivable. The improvements come in the way the film handled its villain, but also in how it created a completely different story arc for the one hero who got the shaft the first time out: Cyborg. This time out, Cyborg is the most important of the otherwise famous DC heroes, and his presence is most certainly welcome. While I’m not the biggest fan of the DC universe characters, I do enjoy the movies for the most part, and in this case I am very glad they made this move to try to correct a past sin. With everyone so fixated on “cancel culture,” some things need to be improved and this really did work out in their favor. One final note that I will mention only because it threw me off. I spent the first half hour trying to fix my TV since the screener was in 4:3 rather than widescreen. But Snyder apparently prefers 4:3, so no need to worry about why your aspect ratio isn’t correct. B

Promising Young Woman
Rated R for language throughout, drug use, sexual assault, some sexual material and strong violence
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 90%
Available on Disc and Streaming

Carey Mulligan has now risen to be an Oscar favorite with this dark girl-power flick about a medical school dropout who pretends to get drunk at bars only to teach the men that try to take advantage of her a big lesson. But what starts out in an almost a too-bleak-to-continue first act gets crazily complex as she learns to fall in love again with an old medical school classmate of hers played by Bo Burnham. By the end you get a surprising and disturbing psychological thriller that will leave you floored. Having just won the Critics Choice Award for best original screenplay, writer/director Emerald Fennell is on a roll, pulling an Oscar nod for picture and screenplay and even beating out Aaron Sorkin for scoring a directing nomination as well. While the film most certainly makes you feel very icky inside, it is also wildly entertaining as you try to figure out what is in our heroine’s head and what she plans on doing next. It is disturbing but you can’t look away. Mulligan’s performance is the epitome of electrifying and she deserves all of the credit she has been garnering. A-

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