Seven films in the February Film Fight.
#FF23 The Whale is a real mix.— Gary Fleming (@garyfleming) February 5, 2023
Fraser is excellent in a layered performance, that is empathetic. The rest of the characters are underwritten to the point of being one note, or have bizarrely, contrived arcs. Works well in moments, but falls apart as a whole.
Bank of Dave
#FF23 Bank Of Dave is about a man trying to create a bank to help working class people.— Gary Fleming (@garyfleming) February 13, 2023
While the fish-out-of-water jokes are tired and the romantic subplot forced, the whole thing works as a feel-good, light, underdog story. It won't win any awards, but it's easy and solid.
All Quiet On The Western Front
#FF23 All Quiet On The Western Front is a protracted look at the horrors of war, and the loss of innocence.— Gary Fleming (@garyfleming) February 13, 2023
It treads no new ground, but it covers the ground it does spectacularly and devastatingly. It makes trench warfare personal and tense, with some horrifying moments.
Knock At The Cabin
#FF23 Knock At The Cabin sees Shyamalan back on form with a small, contained horror thriller that lingers in psychological doubts.— Gary Fleming (@garyfleming) February 13, 2023
Batista is excellent as a gentle but terrifying force, delivering an apocalyptic premise. The end is heavy-handed, but the rest works well.
Ant Man & The Wasp: Quantumania
#FF23 Ant Man & The Wasp: Quantumania is the blandest Marvel film in a while.— Gary Fleming (@garyfleming) February 26, 2023
Jonathan Majors is great in his role, but the film itself is all world-building and no interesting plot or ideas. It lacks the humour and originality of the previous films.
Boring and disappointing.
#FF23 Sharper does so well for a lot of its runtime, and then squanders it in the ending.— Gary Fleming (@garyfleming) February 26, 2023
You'll see most of the cons coming, but they're executed well. The cast are excellent and make it work, but the last act requires them to become very stupid. Doesn't work.
#FF23 Cocaine Bear is everything I expected it to be.— Gary Fleming (@garyfleming) February 26, 2023
The title does most of the work: a comedic horror about a black bear finding quite a lot of coke and going on a rampage. It's over-the-top, fun, a bit silly, and a bit gory. Easy watching.
The February Winner
While Cocaine Bear nearly got it for it’s simple entertainment value, I think the winner has to be All Quiet On The Western Front, a difficult but powerful watch.