Sam has written 36 reviews for films rated ★★½ .

  • Crush

    Crush

    ★★½

    Am I the only one who finds these fanciful depictions of high school as queer utopias free from any form of discrimination equally as disturbing as the real world? It's all a bit disingenuous and pandering, obviously, but most of all, dull. Whatever though – lesbians deserve cheesy movies too ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

  • Deep Water

    Deep Water

    ★★½

    2 hours of Ana De Armas getting blitzed, fucking younger men, and doing it all in front of her mopey, greying husband – crown it!

  • The Eyes of Tammy Faye

    The Eyes of Tammy Faye

    ★★½

    Not to diminish Jessica Chastain’s obvious talents, but I’m so bored of these middling, paint-by-numbers biopics bagging Best Actor/Actress simply for featuring the ‘most’ performance of the year. It’s the same way Best Makeup and Hairstyling invariably goes to whoever can make the hottest celebrity look the ugliest through wigs and prosthetics (Dune was fucking robbed).

    In a year’s time, no one will remember this film, and yet here it is with two Oscars. Meh.

  • Being the Ricardos

    Being the Ricardos

    ★★½

    Aaron Sorkin is the Florence Foster Jenkins of directing.

  • House of Gucci

    House of Gucci

    ★★½

    I hope Jared Leto enjoyed his performance because I certainly didn't.

    Seriously what the fuck was that? Mark Kermode said it best: 'Can Jared Leto please start acting like he's acting in the film with everybody else?' The pick me energy is on another level.

    As for the film? Camp in the worst way. Funny for all the wrong reasons. At least 45 minutes too long. And above all displays a complete and utter lack of style. Ridley baby what happened?

  • Army of Thieves

    Army of Thieves

    ★★½

    Gwen tells Sebastian the heists will get ‘more dangerous and more exciting’ each time and then all three end up being exactly the same except the first safe has 3 dials, the second one has 5 and the third has 7.

  • Sausage Party

    Sausage Party

    ★★½

    ‘What’s better than this? Guys being foods.’ – Seth Rogen after smoking 19 blunts.

  • Candyman

    Candyman

    ★★½

    The way this film literally spells out its thesis multiple times rather than trusting the audience to connect the more-than-obvious dots. Gentrification is not a new concept to anyone, but you'd think Peele and DaCosta came up with it themselves after watching the first 10 minutes. Plus they don't even address it in any meaningful way – just turn it into a clumsy and simplistic metaphor and then club you over the head with it like a desperate substitute Geography teacher. Disappointing.

  • Fear Street: 1978

    Fear Street: 1978

    ★★½

    This series (and this entry in particular) is indicative of everything wrong with Netflix's original content at the moment – technically proficient and mostly well-made, but completely devoid of any sense of identity.

    There's a big difference between wearing your influences on your sleeve and inhabiting them wholesale, and this felt like a cheap regurgitation of Sleepaway Camp and The Burning. It's the kind of movie you forget about before it's even over.

  • Fear Street: 1994

    Fear Street: 1994

    ★★½

    Neon-drenched aesthetic? Check. Nostalgic 90s needle drops? Check. Rag-tag bunch of misfit teens? Check. 

    Stranger Things has well and truly fucked up horror.

  • False Positive

    False Positive

    ★★½

    A24? It’s giving Shudder Original.

  • The Vigil

    The Vigil

    ★★½

    Decent premise and strong lead performance undone by ear-splitting jump scares and a so-so final act. Probably the best Jewish horror movie, but in the same vein as that joke from Airplane! where a passenger asks for some light reading and gets a leaflet of ‘famous Jewish sports legends’. We out here... we’re just doing something else.