Baby Driver

A new review from The Movie Snob.

Baby Driver  (B-).  Hm, I didn’t know until just now that this highly rated movie (Metacritic score 86) was directed by the same fellow (Edgar Wright) who directed Shaun of the DeadHot Fuzz, and The World’s End.  It’s a crazy little movie about a getaway driver savant called Baby (Ansel Elgort, The Fault in Our Stars) who works for a criminal mastermind called Doc (Kevin Spacey, L.A. Confidential).  There’s a very good and elaborate car chase at the beginning, and the climactic pursuit at the end seems to go on forever, and in between there’s not too much of note.  Lily James (Cinderella) plays the sweet li’l waitress who steals Baby’s heart, and Jamie Foxx (Dreamgirls) plays a crazy gangster named Bats.  Jon Hamm (TV’s Mad Men) has a lot of screen time as another gangster, but I’m afraid I will always see Don Draper whenever he’s on screen.  Eiza González (Jem and the Holograms) makes an impression as a gangster called Darling.  On the whole, an okay and disposable summer movie.

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The Fault in Our Stars

A new review from The Movie Snob.

The Fault in Our Stars (B). As previously recorded in these virtual pages, I liked the bestselling novel The Fault in Our Stars (John Green) decently well. Now I have finally gotten around to seeing the movie version, and I thought it was a pretty good weepy. Our heroine is Hazel (Shailene Woodley, The Descendants), a teenager who has temporarily fought off cancer but has to tote oxygen around with her everywhere to compensate for her weakened lungs. Against her wishes she goes to a cancer support group, where she meets a tall, charming cancer survivor named Augustus Waters (Ansel Elgort, Divergent). Love is in the air, made all the more precious by Hazel’s fragile health and the omnipresent danger of relapse. The two stars made for a believable romance, and I thought Laura Dern (Blue Velvet) turned in nice supporting work as Hazel’s fearful mother. There weren’t too many clunky moments, although the subplot about the author of Hazel’s favorite book felt a little tacked-on. Still and all, not a bad movie if you’re in the mood for a tear-jerker.

Divergent – a second opinion

A second opinion from The Movie Snob.

Divergent  (D).  It seems to me that the young-heroine-opposes-hideous-dystopia genre is getting stale in a hurry.  (For The Borg Queen’s recent review of this film, with complete plot summary, click here.)  In my humble opinion, this film is too long (2 hours, 19 minutes), the action sequences are too lame, and the arbitrary rules governing this particular futureworld are just too goofy to go along with.  Shailene Woodley, who I thought was very good in The Descendants and perfectly adequate in The Spectacular Now, doesn’t distinguish herself in the leading role of Katniss, er, I mean Tris, future leader of the rebellion.  (Interestingly, the film also features Miles Teller, who played Woodley’s boyfriend in The Spectacular Now, and Ansel Elgort (Carrie), who will play her boyfriend in the upcoming The Fault In Our Stars.)  Kate Winslet (Titanic) channels her inner Jodie Foster (Elysium) as the head baddie.  Anyhow, almost the entire movie is consumed with Tris’s training as she becomes a member of the Dauntless faction.  It’s just not that interesting.  Skip it.