‘Overlord’ Is the Kind of Over-The-Top, Bloody Escapism That We Deserve

In the first year of my mom and dad’s marriage, my mom remembers coming home late to see my dad sprawled on the couch, exhausted, watching Die Hard (1988). When she asked him what had made him decide to watch this particular film so late in the night on a weekday, he replied, “I’ve had a stressful day. I just needed to watch people blow up.” Although not nearly as charismatic or witty as John McTiernan’s modern classic, my father’s exhausted confession perfectly sums up my feelings about Julius Avery’s Overlord (2018).

Overlord-2018.jpg

Continue reading “‘Overlord’ Is the Kind of Over-The-Top, Bloody Escapism That We Deserve”

Podcast #1: Halloween, Horror, and Childhood Scares

Dear Much Ado readers, get ready to be listeners!

We’re so proud to share the first episode of our podcast with you. It’s been a year (and a month) since we opened Much Ado and we could never imagine how far we’d come in such a short time.

On our Patreon page we set a goal of $75 to start working on our podcast and this month we hit that goal, thanks to your help! Every time we gain a new Patron, we come one step closer to saving enough money to pay to our writers. You can help us with as little as $1.

Our first episode is about, as it should be on October 31st, Halloween! Podcast host Charlie Dykstal talks with our writers Mia Vicino, Mary Beth McAndrews and Tyler Llewyn Taing about horror films that scared them in childhood, jump scares and how cathartic horror films can be.

Listen to the first episode on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher and Google Play. Don’t forget to subscribe for upcoming episodes and share your feedback with us on twitter or via e-mail at muchadoaboutcinema@gmail.com.

‘The House with a Clock in Its Walls’ Fails to Create a World Worth Spending Any Time In

Considering his other film of 2018 was the abysmal and insensitive Death Wish remake, Eli Roth’s pivot to the child-oriented The House With A Clock In Its Walls (based on the young adult novel of the same name from Edward Gorey) may have taken quite a few people off guard. However, while I’ll admit the thought of him filming a horror story for kids had never crossed my mind until this announcement, it seemed like an area that Eli Roth may finally be able to shine in. Roth is well known for his over-the-top style of horror that can be interpreted either as enjoyable campy fun, or ridiculously stupid schlock depending on who you ask. Most of the time, I fall into the latter category but, just like a mother who keeps sending her deadbeat son checks in the mail, I always believed that Roth had a raw potential that was being wasted. The parts of Eli Roth’s style that I do enjoy always revolved around the obvious fun that he has on set, and the pure love he has for horror as a genre. What better place to explore that melodramatic dialogue and mess around with silly effects and scenarios than in a children’s horror film? Sure, he can’t be as bloody and insane as he is in all of his other movies, but the kitschy-ness of his style that usually comes across as messy or in poor taste would fit right in with a film all about an exuberant warlock and his larger-than-life house. This is what I wanted, what I hoped for, what I was really excited for. This is not what A House With a Clock In Its Walls gave me. Instead, what I got was a film that felt like the director himself had slept through it.

jkblk_house_header Continue reading “‘The House with a Clock in Its Walls’ Fails to Create a World Worth Spending Any Time In”

Most Anticipated Films from Fall Festivals

As the dreadful month of August ends, fall begins and with fall comes the most wonderful time of the year: Festival Season! Venice already started, Toronto and Telluride will follow, then comes London and New York. The happiness and the discourse will spread from the sunny seaside of Italy, bringing film lovers together (or apart) until the Awards Season, in which we all will sell our souls to competition. But until then, enjoy a list of some of the films we cannot wait to see from festival season.

Continue reading “Most Anticipated Films from Fall Festivals”

‘Papillon’ Is a Sincere Character Study Disguised as a Gritty Escape Film

I can’t quite tell you why I was so excited for Papillon when I first saw the trailer for it a few months ago. I only found out after I had begun to anticipate it that it was actually a remake of a 1973 film by the same name, which in turn was based off a book of the same name, which was, in fact, a memoir from Henri Charrière (now played by Charlie Hunnam) whose nickname was, you guessed it – Papillon. I felt a bit silly for not knowing any of this beforehand, considering the original film starred Steve McQueen in the titular role, and Dustin Hoffman in the supporting role of Louie Dega (replaced in the new film by Rami Malek). Still, I enjoyed the fact that the only reason I had originally become excited for the film was because it seemed like a classically fun prison escape film, something that has been missing from the stack of summer blockbusters for the last few years. I became intrigued with the idea of going into this film completely blind, so as to not spend the entire runtime comparing and contrasting it to its predecessor. Instead, I could see it the way I had when I first saw the trailer: As a new and exciting prison escape genre action film starring two actors I’ve always enjoyed. If you go into this film having been a fan of the original, or having read the book for that matter, I’m not the person to tell you exactly how it holds up. But I’m of the belief that all films are created equal and deserve to be judged as such. With that being said, this film definitely manages to hold its own.

4189645
Rami Malek as Louie Dega, a rich con-man with a mark on his back.

Continue reading “‘Papillon’ Is a Sincere Character Study Disguised as a Gritty Escape Film”