December 22, 2016 | Category: Films

Film Fight 2016: September

September was a decent month with five films that are all at least decent.

First up, Bad Moms is a comedy about a mother who decides to act reasonably(ish) rather than live up to the expectations which society (and the PTA, in particular) have for her. It’s got some very funny moments, a mixture of great and fairly bland characters, and fun (if uneven) plotting. It’s good, but not great. (See my Bad Moms Twitter review)

The Infiltrator sees Bryan Cranston as a US Customs agent trying to infiltrate the Columbian drug cartels. As you’d expect, Cranston absolutely nails his part. One scene, where he is forced to berate an unknowing waiter, is as gripping as it is humiliating. Beyond that, it’s fairly disjointed: moving around the plot and tone a little too incoherently. It’s not bad, just not fully formed. (See my The Infiltrator Twitter review)

I have a soft-spot for movies about time-loops, and Arq is no exception. A strange machine keeps resetting a few hours of a young man’s life just as a home invasion begins. Set in a near-future dystopia, we see a great conflict played out again and again in an odd cat and mouse game. I won’t spoil any of the twists, but it seems to do something different from most in the genre. Worth watching. (See my Arq Twitter review)

The Girl With All The Gifts is a new take on zombie movies that works remarkably well. A young girl is being held by the military for reasons unknown, as they try to keep their encampment clear. As we learn why and the plot moves forward, we see a strange new world from the young protagonist’s point of view. Brutal violence is balanced by darkly funny moments, and sympathetic characters on all sides. Well-shot, and with an excellent score. Great.(See my The Girl With All The Gifts Twitter review)

Finally, Sausage Party is a Seth Rogen comedy (animated, this time) with all that entails. If you dislike his other work, you won’t like this. For the rest of us, this film is very dumb and extremely slow to start. It never manages to land any of the big laughs it wants, but is passably funny. Probably one to have a few drinks before seeing. Okay. (See my Sausage Party Twitter review)

A tougher month than most, but the winner is The Girl With All The Gifts: dark, well-written, and refreshingly original.