Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton – Week of May 17, 2021

New in Home Entertainment

Week of May 17, 2021

Those Who Wish Me Dead
Rated R for strong violence/language throughout
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 62%
In Theaters and on HBO Max

From one of the hottest writer/directors in Hollywood, Tyler Sheridan (Wind River, Yellowstone) comes this action/thriller about a fire jumper (Angelina Jolie) who discovers a young boy on the run from assassins who will do anything to kill him and anyone else that might see their faces in the process. With the back drop of extreme forest fires and danger looming at every corner, the two must find a way to survive in the harshest of circumstances. There’s a lot to like here, including a solid actress in a live or die situation with no help and only an axe for protection versus two soulless hitman with a plethora of guns. It tells an engaging story against both a harsh human nemesis and even harsher natural enemy bent on absolute destruction. And yet it feels both rushed and incomplete, with a storyline that might not have been what Sheridan originally envisioned when beginning the project. It ends on a satisfactory enough note but the whole thing feels like it could have been something more than what we ended up with. B-

The Woman in the Window
Rated R for violence and language
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 26%
Available on Netflix

In this psychological thriller based on the novel A.J. Finn, Amy Adams portrays a woman suffering from agoraphobia who witnesses a murder from her apartment only to find out that what she thinks she saw is possibly just a delusion. Obviously inspired by Hitchcock’s Rear Window in both story and directorial style, the movie creates a unique atmosphere full of confusion and psychosis where you don’t actually know what is real until deep until the narrative. But in spite of a committed performance by Adams, the story goes limp, as if the the filmmakers and their talented cast lost interest half-way though. And then the big plot twist just sort of fizzles as it is exposed, due mostly to its absurdity and some to the fact that the story didn’t deserve a twist to begin with. Director Joe Wright (Pride and Prejudice) is normally fantastic, but here his talents are wasted on material that tries desperately hard to be Hitchcockian while delivering a forgettable crime thriller. His visuals and style are creative, but they end up taking you nowhere. C-

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton – Week of May 3, 2021

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton

Week of May 3, 2021

Tom Clancy’s Without Remorse
Rated R for violence
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 44%
Streaming on Amazon Prime

One of Tom Clancy’s biggest titles not to hit the big screen until now is this story about a young Navy seal named John Clark (Michael B. Jordan) who goes on an international revenge mission after his pregnant wife is murdered. Teaming up with a fellow seal (Jodie Turner-Smith) and a potentially dangerous CIA operative (Jamie Bell), he slowly tracks down and eliminates anyone he thinks could have been responsible for his wife’s assassination. I remember reading this book when it was released back in 1993, sure that it would make a great movie, and Hollywood has tried for decades with no fruit to show. It’s an emotionally charged story full of espionage, pain and vengeance, and it reads very theatrically. But here they just took a big star and put him in an action pic that doesn’t play like it should. It has all the violence of the original story (although it deals with a completely new set of bad guys and a modern story line) but it doesn’t have the heart of the original tale. Ultimately it feels poorly directed and miscast throughout with some fairly unconvincing acting from its supporting cast and a focus solely on action rather than story. Being an origin film for John Clark, it seems like a failed attempt at creating a franchise when the filmmakers should have been more concerned with making the adaptation work. Perhaps this is the reason why Paramount chose to sell to Amazon Prime rather than to follow its original plan and release theatrically. C-

Demon Slayer – Kimetsu No Yaiba – The Movie: Mugen Train
Rated R for violence and bloody images
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 96%
In theaters in both subtitled and dubbed versions

While the American box office has been largely hurting, Asian movies are making bundles with this flick as a prime example. So far the little animated Japanese juggernaut has pulled in almost a half-billion dollars internationally, and with little domestic product to compete, it is doing rather well here in the states, taking up many of our country’s available screens. The story follows a group of young demon slayers who meet up with a powerful swordsman to take on a creepy demon who has possessed a train. At least that’s what I think it was about. Honestly, the whole thing was confusing and my memory of the experience is hazy at best. I’m guessing that if you haven’t seen the tv show, then you will be lost like me, but fans of the show seem to be very happy with it. I know it’s rated R, but honestly, it feels like a PG-13 and should be okay for kids who really love this kind of thing. The cultural and artistic aspects alone make it a good enough risk if you are on the bubble. But while it was beautifully animated and weirdly interesting, the fact that I just couldn’t connect makes this a miss for me. C+

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton – Week of April 26, 2021

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton

Week of April 26, 2021

Mortal Kombat
Rated R for some crude references, language throughout, and strong bloody violence
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 55%
In theaters and streaming on HBO Max

This uber-violent martial arts thriller, based on the classic video game, follows a group of chosen human fighters who must fight a group of fighters from the “Outworld” in order to prevent them from successfully invading and destroying Earth. In one after the other brutal fight, the seemingly underwhelming human fighters are made to find in themselves the power to take on the evil forces. Just as in HBO Max’s recent release Kong vs. Godzilla, the plot is practically unnecessary. Every word spoken is there just to get to the next action sequence. What little dialog there is tries to make sense of the world our heroes and villains are in to give them a reason to fight, and since the audience is only there for the macabre melee, it all works out. In a way it’s like fight porn. But if you work hard to ignore the lousy script and even worse acting, what you are left with is some pretty spectacular, although extremely gruesome, battle sequences. From start to finish, there is a level of excitement and energy that allows the movie to work in its own way. So for what it is, Mortal Kombat delivers exactly what it promises, and nothing more. C+

Four Good Days
Rated R for brief sexuality, language throughout and drug content
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 46%
In theaters now and paid streaming on May 21

Mila Kunis has done rather well in comedy and sci-fi over recent years, but here she goes the dramatic route as a young heroine addict who needs the help of her mother (Glenn Close) to stay sober for the 4 days required to get a shot (literally and figuratively) at remaining drug free. While the movie is timely and relevant, it is still a hard one to watch, just like it’s eerily similar cousin Hillbilly Elegy, which also starred Glenn Close in almost the exact same role, sans the make up. As one of the most beautiful women in Hollywood, Kunis gives gravity to the role showing that beauty and innocence can be decimated by drugs. She makes a convincing enough addict and Close is on point as the mom. I’m not sure if the story is realistic enough as it tries to display a life on drugs in just a matter of days, but as a morality tale, it sorta works. There are some nice scenes, like the one where she speaks to a classroom full of children which sums up the film nicely, even if set up under inorganic circumstances. But honestly, there is too much here to be overly critical about, so while they get through the script, it ultimately proves to be movie-of-the-week material with a few dirty words thrown in so they don’t categorized that way. C

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton – Week of March 29, 2021

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton

Week of March 29, 2021

Godzilla Vs. Kong
Rated PG-13 for destruction, brief language, intense creature violence
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 80%
In theaters and streaming on HBO Max

With the previous Godzilla and King Kong movies leading up to this big event, Godzilla goes after Kong since, well you know, there can only be one alpha titan. With humans turning to Kong as their savior, they do what they can to protect him and turn the tide in his favor. But when humans go a step too far (I’m sure you’ll see it coming a mile away), the final battle, which is basically the back half of the movie, takes a turn to change the course of the titans. If you are looking for an awesome plot and invigorating dialog to set up the nonstop action, you’ve come to the wrong place. The plot is silly at all turns, just as it was in the previous films, leaving you constantly repeating the phrase “well that makes no sense!” But fortunately the set pieces are where the budget went and the fights are as big and intense as you would expect from such a franchise. And since most people will be able to watch with their already-in-place HBO Max subscription, you will get your money’s worth and then some. Honestly, even though I thought the film was mediocre, I might just pay to see it in a theater as I am fully vaccinated and dying to get my butt in a cushy seat to see a giant tentpole flick again. It’s not great, but honestly, at this point it doesn’t need to be. C+

Earwig and the Witch
Rated PG
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 34%
Available on Disc and Streaming

From Goro Miyazaki, son of legendary animator Hayao Miyazaki, comes Studio Ghibli’s first computer-animated feature film which features an orphaned witch living in an orphanage, only to be scooped up by another witch and a strange magical man named The Mandrake to tend their home. But being a stubborn and industrious little girl, Earwig does everything she can to figure out their secrets and mysteries. I’m sure Goro has been well-trained and possesses some of his father’s creativity, but there isn’t a lot of talent on display here. The animation is flimsy and disappointing, reminiscent of some of the lousy animation we see in many cheaply-made straight to Netflix toons. And the storytelling just isn’t up to snuff either. There are some nice moments here and there and the film is at least unpredictable. But it certainly isn’t worthy of the house it comes from as it feels incomplete and rushed, like the story-crafting and art took a backseat to the need to produce a computer-animated project. C-

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton – Week of March 22, 2021

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton

Week of March 22, 2021

Rated R for language throughout, brief drug use, bloody images and strong violence
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 87%
In theaters

Nobody stars Bob Odenkirk (Better Caul Saul) as a literal nobody who is seemingly afraid to even protect his family when home invaders break in during the opening moments of the film. He’s just a nice guy who is trying to shield his family from violence, until a switch goes off and then suddenly he can’t wait to stand up for himself and even hopes that someone will make the wrong move and cross him. Of course when this happens, he makes enemies with a Russian mobster that eventually puts himself and his family in eminent risk. For his entire career, Odenkirk has given us so many amazing performances as the average, sometimes goofy, dude next door. You might want to go have a beer with him, but you definitely wouldn’t ask him to come back you up in a fight. Until now. This 90 minute entertaining departure is super violent and yet amazingly fun, and funny. It is not designed to win awards or leave you intellectually stimulated. But rather it is custom built to give its audience a short burst of mindless excitement for, what will be for many, their first time back in theaters in a year. B

News of the World
Rated PG-13 for some language, disturbing images, thematic material and violence
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 88%
Available on disc and streaming

After a relatively successful theatrical run, this innovative and relevant western directed by Paul Greengrass (The Bourne Supremacy) and starring Tom Hanks as traveling news reader in the old west, is finally making its way to disc. Taking place five years after the Civil War, retired Captain Jefferson Kyle Kidd (Hanks) discovers a young orphan girl who doesn’t speak English on the trail near Wichita Falls, TX who desperately needs help to find her aunt and uncle in hill country. So traveling through both the somewhat civilized cities and the treacherous regions of Texas, he must find a way to keep himself and the girl alive while evading the scoundrels that mean to harm them. While the film appears to be on the level and works as a straight-out story to those who don’t want to put too much thought into it, ultimately the movie comes off as way more figurative and poetic than literal. This deeper meaning to the film gives it a less that subtle complexity that is well-driven by Greengrass and Hanks. While filmed in New Mexico, the story was that much more interesting for taking place in cities and towns (in name only) which most of us, as Texans, are very familiar with. While it had some story elements that seem a bit far-fetched, the many different facets make for an excellent movie-watching experience. A-

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-

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton – Week of March 8, 2021

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton

Week of March 8, 2021

Chaos Walking
Rated PG-13 for violence and language
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 22%
In Theaters

In 2017, Doug Liman (Edge of Tomorrow) started filming this sci-fi flick with hot newcomers (at least they were then) Daisy Ridley (Star Wars: The Force Awakens) and Tom Holland (Spider-Man: Homecoming) about a boy on a strange planet who tries to protect a girl whose spacecraft has just crashed there. Making things awkward for the young man is the planet forces all males to have what is a called “the noise” where their thoughts are displayed as they are thinking them – and he’s never seen a girl. For years this project has been tinkered on due to poor test screenings, and at a price tag of $100 million it is finally hitting theaters this week. You can tell that a lot of work went into the project and it certainly has great ambition. Unfortunately, the content just doesn’t translate well on to the big screen as it comes across as more unintentionally silly and weird than serious. Holland and Ridley do a good enough job in their roles and the impressive supporting cast, including Mads Mikkelsen, Demian Bichir, Cynthia Erivo and Nick Jonas, all seem to be doing their best to hold it together, but the narrative and the noise both serve to annoy and distract more than thrill. In the end, you get a mostly forgettable sci-fi pic with Ridley’s awful clown-like hairstyle etched in your brain as its sole reminder. C

Coming 2 America
Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual content, language and drug content
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 52%
Streaming on Amazon Prime

30 years after the events of the original Coming to America, Eddie Murphy, Arsenio Hall and gang are all back to further explore their lives and adventures. As Prince Akeem (Murphy) becomes King of the fictional African Kingdom of Zamunda, he is under great pressure to produce a male heir, and what he has is three daughters. But fortunately he discovers that during his trip to Queens 30 years ago, he inadvertently knocked up an American (Leslie Jones) who went on to give birth to his bastard son (Jermaine Fowler). Very quickly into the film, he brings back son and mother to Zamunda to begin grooming him to become a prince. Even though most of the movie takes place in Zamunda, many of the characters played originally by Murphy and Hall in the original come back to visit in various sequences. Honestly, much of that isn’t funny, but enough of the new stuff is. There are some cringe-worthy laugh attempts throughout, but pleasantly enough there are some big jokes and bits that also work well. A prominent critic friend of mine wisely gave me the advice to grab a drink or two (or three) while watching and it will be that much more enjoyable. That might be true for any film. But here it works especially well and by the end I was having a particularly good time. So take my advice and take advantage of your ability to watch at home… B

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton – Week of March 1, 2021

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton

Week of March 1, 2021

Raya and the Last Dragon
PG for some violence, action and thematic elements
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 96%
In theaters and streaming on Disney+ Premier Access

Originally slated for last fall, Disney Animation’s latest creation features a young princess who tries to bring together her kingdom after it is torn apart from years of war, greed and jealousy. Together with a strange dragon and a constantly assembling group of helpers, she desperately attempts to destroy the evil gripping her kingdom before it decimates all life. While technically a princess movie, it is very unique in its storytelling and presents itself as more of an action flick where the girl isn’t trying to find true love or prove herself to her friends and family, but rather attempts to save the world in which she leaves. It’s a little strange in its set up but rather watchable once you get in and is thoroughly enjoyable by the end. The animation is just plain exceptional with so many fine details that many will overlook. I especially loved the score by composer James Newton Howard which only adds to the film’s lovely aesthetic. It does feel a little political at times, although that might be because everything seems political nowadays. Overall the story of a hero trying to bring a country together (one which is afflicted by greed and misinformation) is both appealing and relevant. A-

Tom & Jerry
Rated PG for rude humor, cartoon violence and brief language
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 26%
In theaters and streaming on HBOMax

Warner Brothers will be able to claim a small victory for this terrible new partially animated film based on the classic cat and mouse series in that its theatrical debut was the second biggest since the pandemic closed theaters a year ago, although that will be short-lived once Raya opens this weekend. In this new adventure, the humans and landscape are all real, while Tom, Jerry and all of the other animals are presented in their old-fashioned hand-drawn style. When Jerry the mouse hides in a fancy hotel, Tom the cat makes friends with a new hotel employee (Chloë Grace Moretz) in order to try to take out the mouse and stop scaring the guests. I’m sure some kids might get into it, but with a ludicrous plot and lack of any source of humor, the film is just one silly chase scene after another with plenty of horrific dialog by the humans in order to fill in the action-less gaps. It was a film I just couldn’t wait to stop watching. D

The United States Vs. Billie Holiday
Rated R for drug use, domestic violence, language, nudity and mature themes
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 55%

This highly uneven biopic by director Lee Daniels stars R&B performer Andra Day (in a role that just won her a Golden Globe) as the legendary jazz-singer Billie Holiday as she attempts to press political buttons with her music while at the same time succumbing to her addiction to heroine. Very similar to last years Judy Garland film starring Rene Zellweger, the film contains a riveting performance contained in a narrative not worthy of the talent on display. Day is just fantastic to watch but the film is kind of miserable and depressing. I loved the story of her song “Strange Fruit” and its power over audiences, haters and the U.S. government. But the film basically spends too much time overemphasizing the idea that she would have a had a more lasting impact if she had just stayed away from drugs. Maybe true, but the legacy this film presents is way more about her flaws than her music or myth. In addition, so many scenes seemed completely unnecessary and redundant, where a tighter script and emphasis on pacing might have proved to be more powerful. C

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

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton

Week of February 15, 2021

Rated R for some full nudity
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 94%
In theaters and streaming on Hulu

This quirky and quiet little film stars Frances McDormand as a lost soul who has largely given up on the American dream, opting to trade it in for a van which she can travel around the country in, taking odd jobs when available and attempting to make friends when possible. Largely poetic in narrative, the film attempts, on a broader scale, to show the aftermath of the Great Recession and its deep effects on a largely growing part of the American population. Currently the odds-on favorite to win the Oscar for Best Picture and Best Director (Chloe Zhao), the film has really struck a chord with audiences thus far and for good reason. Its very subject is getting more and more relevant as so many in America keep getting forgotten as they wander aimlessly in a life that some may consider free, but might really be a life that is locked out. It’s a challenging film starring one of our greatest actresses in a role perfectly built for her unique persona and talent. But as strong as the content is, I still can’t count it as one of the best of the year. It’s a film that I’m glad I saw and one that will stick with me though, and for that I can fully recommend it. I am also open to the idea that it might grow on me. It reminds me of 2007’s Into the Wild, which I couldn’t really get into at the time, but now stands as one of my favorites. A-

The Mauritanian
Rated R for violence including a sexual assault, and language
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 68%
In theaters

From director Kevin McDonald (The Last King of Scotland) comes this true story of a Mauritanian man (Tahar Rahim) who was held without charge for over a decade in Guantanamo when he was thought to have helped carry out the 9-11 attacks. When an American lawyer and her assistant (Jodie Foster and Shailene Woodley) attempt to defend his rights as a prisoner, they unveil truths that would go on to send shockwaves through the Guantanamo prisoner program, showing the world that America isn’t always the good guy. While the film is a tad dry and at times unfocused, the performance from Rahim is terrific and makes the film worth the watch. It definitely has a bit of Hollywood slant, but it makes a good case that is hard to argue with as it tries to tear down what the U.S. military was doing there for so long. B-

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton – Week of February 8, 2021

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton

Week of February 8, 2021

Rated PG-13 for some thematic elements and a rude gesture
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 98%
In theaters and streaming on VOD February 26

This beautiful family immigrant story took Sundance by storm in 2020 and could be the film to beat come Oscar season. Starring Walking Dead icon Steven Yeun, the film follows a Korean family who moves to Arkansas in order to start a farm and hopefully a prosperous new life. Of course drama and struggle follow at all turns, but to save the day is the wonderful Yuh-Jung Youn as the spry granny whose surprising words and constant unexpected actions bring on an often hilarious touch to the most serious of moments. It’s a wonderful little film that shows the greatness that comes from our immigrants rather than the narratives that have been pushed on America over the last five years by people that resent them. But it does so in a way that is neither preachy nor political. It shows an America that so many of us want to believe is the true heart of our country. It is so easy to fall in love with this story and will be nearly impossible to shake it once you’ve experienced it. A+

Judas and the Black Messiah
Rated R for violence and pervasive language
Roten Tomatoes Score: 98%
In theaters and streaming on HBO Max

In this perfect companion piece to The Trial of the Chicago 7, the FBI lures in an informant (LaKeith Stanfield) to infiltrate the Chicago chapter of the Black Panthers in the late 60’s in order to take down their leader, Fred Hampton (Daniel Kaluuya), who J. Edgar Hoover considered one of the biggest threats to the United States. Told as a modern-day Judas and Jesus parable, the film is a stunning example of government overreach and shows how bad things can be when corrupted power unchecked is allowed to run rampant within law enforcement. With a tight script and a phenomenal cast, the film helps us better understand how the past deeply effects the present and how we are still struggling to outrun the gravity of our history. More than that, it is a terrific drama where fact seems too outrageous to not be fiction. A

Let Him Go
Rated R for violence
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 83%
Available on disc and VOD

One of the biggest theatrical hits from 2020 (obviously hit is a relative term) is this family drama/thriller starring Kevin Costner and Diane Lane about a retired couple who go looking for their grandson after their son dies and his wife remarries. When they see that abuse might be occurring in their family, the two of them attempt to intervene, only to find themselves in a war with a family that doesn’t want them poking around. Funny enough, the film you get is exactly what you see in the trailer, with few surprises. But its intent is well enough and the fact that you get Costner and Lane, basically playing the same characters they did in Man of Steel, minus the little alien boy, proves to be a convincing enough revenge thriller from two actors that we love to see on screen. There is an extreme lack of character and story development, and perhaps this would have been better as a miniseries rather than a two-hour narrative, but fortunately it is satisfying enough to prove effective in its own way. In the end you get the film that is advertised and the film that many want to see. B-

Rated PG-13 for thematic content, brief strong language, and partial nudity
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 64%
In theaters

Robin Wright’s directorial debut stars herself as a woman trying to escape from the world after a horrible tragedy occurs in her life. So she moves to the Rockies into an isolated cabin with no phone and no car under the full assumption that she will figure it out. But when she fails to figure it out, a kind stranger (Damian Bichir) comes into her life to help her not only survive the harshness of nature but possibly learn to get over her extreme depression. We’ve seen this sort of story play out but this one is different enough and in spite of its immense sadness, manages to be both beautiful and engaging. I think many of us have dreamed of moving off to the mountains to live life as a hermit and this film will both feed that desire and scare you away from it. I wish the film had more character development for both Wright and Bichir, as the super short runtime makes the film feel like the CliffsNotes for a larger, more interesting story. But the immense weight of the material does seem that much lighter at 89 minutes than it would have at two hours or more. B-