A brief month, with only three films in the fight…
First up, The Nice Guys sees Shane Black return to the director’s chair for an offbeat detective, buddy comedy. Russell Crowe’s tough enforcer plays well against Ryan Gosling’s private investigator, who both get a little out of their depth on a missing girl case. There are moments of cliche, but most are confounded by sharp left turns into the unexpected. Fun, light, and entertaining, this is breezy enough to look passed the faults. Worth watching. (See my The Nice Guys Twitter review)
Independence Day: Resurgence is that worst of sequels: one that tries to make connections to a film from 20 years ago, and fails to do anything meaningful beyond making us pine for the days that the original was a blockbuster. The writing is expositional and dull, the characters are flat, and the action is entirely forgettable. There is absolutely no level on which this movie works. Lazy, and best avoided. (See my Independence Day: Resurgence Twitter review)
Finally, The Secret Life of Pets is an animated movie about what pets get up to when their owners are away. The beats of the story (main character is jealous of new character, both get themselves lost, but come together to be friends on the trip home) is straight out of the Pixar book – specifically Toy Story. That said, it’s got enough funny moments to keep the momentum up. Fine. (See my The Secret Life of Pets Twitter review)
As should be obvious, the winner for June is The Nice Guys; decent comedy/drama, challenging detective noir tropes.