Thor: Love and Thunder – JenEric Movie Review

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Hello Cinephiles,

Today we’re talking about the 2022 film Thor: Love and Thunder.

Story

The actual story was fairly simple and straightforward. There was a lot of humour and a lot of emotion. Sometimes it felt like the flow between scenes was missing something and there were more than a few parts that could have been extended. It felt like they had 6 hours of story and only 2 hours made it to the final cut.

Score: 0

Characters

Somewhere along the way in the MCU, Thor went from slightly oblivious jock / rich kid to a dim-witted fool. Every movie, it feels like he has to relearn how to be worthy and honestly, it’s getting old.

The addition of the Mighty Thor made things more interesting, but I have to say the whole romance was a little meh for me.

I liked the relationship between Jane and Valkyrie and loved the cameos by Sif and Heimdall.

The villain stole the show, however. He was both relatable and if it wouldn’t have killed Thor, I would have been okay with his plan. His redemption at the end through the power of love felt earned and not like a cheap plot trick.

Score: 0.5

Dialogue

The quips and dialogue were excellent, but the imbalance in tone made some scenes comical or just weird.

Score: 0.5

Visuals and Music

Visually this movie was a feast for the eyes. Absolutely gorgeous in every way.

The music was clever and well placed.

Score: 1

Fun

Once I got used to the fact that the movie would be all over the place in tone, I started to enjoy each piece like short films. The last scene with the kids was just so empowering. I loved it.

Score: 1

Overall

The tone is all over the place, the story feels disjointed, the love story was meh, but damn this movie was still a lot of fun. The dialogue and action are spectacular and Christian Bale makes a relatable and fantastic villain.

Final Score: 3 Stars out of 5

Sneakerella – JenEric Movie Review

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Hello Cinephiles,

Today we’re talking about the 2022 film Sneakerella.

Story

This was a modern take on Cinderella and had a lot of throwbacks to the Disney Cinderella. The story was pretty standard, but included a nice, if awkward, Aladdin twist.

Score: 0.5

Characters

The two mains had a lot of chemistry and the rest of the cast was great. The acting was top notch, I particularly liked his best friend and fairy god-father.

I am a little peeved at the lack of development dedicated to the step-father. He didn’t earn his happy ending by being anything but obtuse. He was still a jerk, just not too big a jerk.

Score: 0.5

Dialogue

The dialogue was excellent. It felt authentic to my ear and was quite witty. I liked the puns and plays on classic Disney.

Score: 1

Visuals and Music

The locations and cinematography were stunning. The dance numbers were cool and everything about it was beautifully colourful.

The music was solid. I won’t be humming the songs, but they were well done.

Score: 1

Fun

Maybe it was knowing how it ends or just not liking the angst, but the second half dragged a little for me. My 3yo was bored when there wasn’t any music and everyone else liked it okay.

Score: 0.5

Overall

A fun re-interpretation of Cinderella with great Disney Easter eggs and enjoyable songs. The movie doesn’t add much to the tried and true story, but doesn’t really need to.

Final Score: 3.5

Zombies 3 – JenEric Movie Review

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Hello Cinephiles,

Today we’re talking about the 2022 film Zombies 3.

Story

Although following the same themes as the first two, it deviates more in story. The overall plot is utterly ridiculous, but in the best way possible. There are a few inconsistencies with the first one (specifically the ages of the characters) but it’s still a fun story. I particularly like how they used the three groups’ tech together.

Score: 0.5

Characters

I like the third movie in these sorts of series. The characters are developed and sure of themselves. Zed is a proud Zombie trailblazer and even without knowing her origins, Addison is a leader and welcomes everyone. The rest of the cast fit really well together.

Score: 1

Dialogue

There are a lot of nice nods to classic sci-fi and monster movies. The dialogue leans into the cheesy and series nostalgia, which somehow works really well.

Score: 1

Visuals and Music

By far the best filmed of the series, but the special effects aren’t as great as they could be. I liked how much they managed in the first two with little to no budget, but with a massive budget it was a little disapointing.

The music was great, but still not extremely distinctive. I doubt I’ll hear the soundtrack and know right away what it’s from.

Score: 0.5

Fun

This is a an angst-free and fun movie. It has all the elements that made the first two fun and everyone in the family enjoyed it.

Score: 1

Overall

My favourite of the three, but mostly for the return to an awesome world. It was fun and had some great songs.

Final Score: 4 Stars out of 5

Zombies 2 – JenEric Movie Review

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Hello Cinephiles,

Today we’re talking about the 2020 film Zombies 2

Story

I hate stories where the character tries too hard to be something they’re not. That being said, it’s a fantastic commentary about trying to pass and mask in society.

Score: 0.5

Characters

I hate how far Zed goes into trying to not be a Zombie, but I also understand it. I like that Addison’s optimism and willingness to trust is treated as a good thing and not a flaw. The werewolves were fun and overall I’m impressed with how distinct and memorable they are.

Score: 0.5

Dialogue

A lot of the same is covered in this one as the first, but overall the dialogue is solid and well done.

Score: 1

Music and Visuals

The musical aspects are great and really showcase the actor’s voices, but I still feel that it’s missing something. It’s not a distinct sound.

The visuals are good and choreography great. I like the understated use of special effects.

Score: 0.5

Fun

I understand why it was important to the plot to have the two main characters explore their personalities and backgrounds while questioning what they want to be, but it was frustrating to watch. Especially the Zed story.

Score: 0.5

Overall

You’ll be singing, “Like the zombies do” for a long while. It’s a worthy successor to the first and does a great job at integrating a werewolves, but overall it’s not as much fun as the first.

Final Score: 3 Stars out of 5

Zombies – JenEric Movie Review

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Hello Cinephiles,

Today we’re talking about the 2018 film Zombies.

Story

A cute, if formulaic, take on a traditional teen drama. I like the twist of it being Zombies instead of cliques and the obvious parallels to racism and race relations.

The love story is actually cute and avoids a lot of the cringe and creepiness of the genre.

Score: 0.5

Characters

Zed and Addison are chipper, optimistic, and still a little flawed. Despite the majority of the characters being copy-paste tropes, the actors’ story makes sure to give them more depth than you’d expect from this type of movie.

Score: 1

Dialogue

Despite being a little on the nose and cheesy, it’s quite effective at what it does. The messages and banter come through cleanly without too many explanations to bog down the story.

The fourth wall breaking was a little jarring the first time, but worked well overall.

Score: 0.5

Visuals and Music

The cinematography is quite clever and obviously influenced by previous musicals. The choreography is clever and fun.

The music is good and hits all the Disney Musical beats, but is missing a little something to make it amazing.

Score: 0.5

Fun

Singing, dancing, and charming zombies is something that borders the absolute absurd but somehow works. The kids loved it and the rest of us found ourselves bopping to the music.

Score: 1

Overall

A worthy successor to the post millennium Disney musicals. It’s catchy, fun, and ridiculous. If you enjoy musicals or teen movies, you’ll enjoy this one.

Finals Score: 3.5 Stars out of 5

Fear Street 1666 – JenEric Movie Review

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Hello Cinephiles,

Today we’re talking about the 2021 film Fear Street 1666.

Story 

This one stands on its own the least. It’s more like a mini movie with a tenuous connection to the conclusion. That being said, both halves were excellent. 

Score: 0.5

Characters

Reusing actors was clever, both for cost and to make us feel like we were connected to them from the first 2 movies. They all did a great job, despite the mishmash of accents.

Score:

Dialogue

This was a mess. Too modern and too archaic all at the same time. The second half was a little better, but leaned too heavily into hammy dialogue.

Score: 0

Visuals and Music

The first half was grey and a little boring (Pilgrim life?) the second half went perfectly with 1994. The sets were great, but it was all a little blah.

The music tied in well with the other two, but didn’t add anything interesting.

Score: 0.5

Fun

This was interesting and I was really happy to finally get the answers, but it felt like two short stories. I think actually splitting it into two movies might have made it feel less rushed.

Score: 0.5

Overall

The last part of the series suffers from needing to tie up story points while struggling to tell its own stories. This one really should have been split into two.

Final Score: 2.5 Stars out of 5

Lightyear – JenEric Movie Review

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Hello Cinephiles,

Today we’re talking about the 2022 film Lightyear.

Story

This was a great concept. A movie about the real Buzz Lightyear. The character is the basis for the toy in Toy Story.

Unfortunately, there are some issues with this sort of story. People are expecting a movie about the cartoonish and silly character. This means that people who only care about Toy Story might be turned off by the science-fiction elements, while people who love science-fiction might be turned off by the the association with Toy Story.

That being said, this is an excellent adventure / science-fiction film with influence and nods to so many other great films.

Score: 1

Characters

The character of Buzz is only changed a little from the toy; his silliness is toned down, but he’s still brash, overconfident, and single-minded.

The rest of the cast, although not as fleshed out, are fun and have rewarding story arcs.

Score: 1

Dialogue

There are plenty of references to both Toy Story and classic Sci-Fi. With so much reference material, it could easily have been a quote fest that left people feeling like they missed something. The writers did a great job balancing the quotes and the original story. To a point that they’re great for those that know, but pass over other’s heads.

Score: 1

Visuals and Music

I was in awe of the space scenes, and pretty much all the animation. Pixar ups their quality with every movie and I love it. Beyond the animation, the cinematography is fantastic and references so many other great movies. The shot of Zurg’s ship rising from the floor was just like Vader’s in A New Hope, the airlocks look just like those of 2001: A Space Odyssey, there were plenty of others too.

The music was epic and had just the right balance to be remarkable but not overpower the action.

Score: 1

Fun

The fun you get from this is definitely influenced by your expectations. If you’re expecting the tone and feel of Toy Story, you’ll be disappointed. I went in expecting cheesy sci-fi and was surprised by how much fun it was.

My five and three year old both loved it and sat through the whole thing without complaining. The rest of the family seemed to really love it too.

Score: 1

Overall

The movie is a retro sci-fi with all the best parts from the movies of the genre in the 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s. It’s delightfully littered with Pixar and Sci-fi references and has a fun and heartwarming story.

Final Score: 5* Stars out of 5


*A 5 star review doesn’t mean the movie was perfect nor that it is perfect for everyone but it is a movie I believe is as close to perfect as possible.

Fear Street 1978 – JenEric Movie Review

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Hello Cinephiles,

Today we’re talking about the 2021 film Fear Street 1978.

Story 

This is my favourite of the three. It feels like a good old-fashioned slasher with an added supernatural twist. The framing narrative of the other movies doesn’t intrude as much.

Score: 1

Characters

The younger versions of the characters from the first movie were perfectly cast. The surreal feeling of the trilogy shines here.

Score: 1

Dialogue

Definitely felt off, but not as bad as 1994. I found despite the supernatural elements, the dialogue was delivered pretty well.

Score: 1

Visuals and Music

This felt oddly undersaturated compared to the other two. I liked the predominance of red in the caverns though.

The music was a lot of fun and felt like a nod to Supernatural.

Score: 0.5

Fun

I liked this one a lot. It was exciting and fun. I enjoyed the camp hijinks and the off-kilter world.

Score: 1

Overall

The strongest of the trilogy, it could stand on its own. The characters are fun and I love the mixture of lore, supernatural, and good old-fashioned slasher.

Final Score: 4.5 Stars out of 5

Fear Street 1994 – JenEric Movie Review

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Hello Cinephiles,

Today we’re talking about the 2021 film Fear Street 1994.

Story 

This feels like a Fear Street book but with a little more gore. The end sequence of the movie in the grocery store felt like a way of killing off some characters, since they had an ambulance and could have driven around. It’s also not a complete movie.

Score: 0.5

Characters

I really liked the main three characters and even some of the secondary ones. They were all a little nylistic but that made sense with the setting. The actors were great.

Score: 1

Dialogue

Everything sounded a little too modern for my liking. It didn’t sound like the right time period. Beyond that the dialogue was a little awkward and tried to hard.

Score: 0

Visuals and Music

Dark and aesthetically perfect for Fear Street and 1994. I like the background details that were nods to the books and other horror movies.

The music did its job well.

Score:

Fun

This was a lot of fun to start with, but I got frustrated at the characters quite often. The fact that they didn’t use the ambulance instead of the store annoyed me.

Score: 0.5

Overall

A fun throwback to the books, but the characters do some really dumb things. I enjoyed it, but it feels unfinished without the rest of the series.

Final Score: 3 Stars out of 5

Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle  – JenEric Movie Review

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Hello Cinephiles,

Today we’re talking about the 2017 Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle.

Story

A rare sequel which is more coherent and better all around. Possibly the best video game themed movie of all time, it both relies on and mocks the usual tropes.

Score: 1

Characters

The main five actors do a phenomenal job at being the kids. It’s mostly believable and impressively detailed. Jack Black is amazing.

Score: 1

Dialogue

The problem with trying to capture the dialogue of teens is how quickly it changes. The dialogue already sounds dated after just five years. Although the quips, jokes, and overall tone is well done.

Score: 0.5

Visuals and Music

The movie looks great and I greatly appreciate that they didn’t try to animate it like a video game.

The music is haunting and exciting all at once.

Score: 1

Fun

The five year old found it a little scary, but she loved the action and humour. It’s nice to see her starting to appreciate word-based humour more.

The rest of us enjoyed it as much as the first few times. I particularly appreciate that the humour around Jack Black’s character was so wholesome.

Score: 1

Overall

A wonderful adventure that balances action, humour, and character development for a near perfect movie.

Final Score: 4.5 Stars out of 5