‘My Cousin Rachel’ Heaves With Melodrama, Yet Threadbare on Suspense

Originally published June 14th, 2017 on thedistantcloseup.com When a trailer for an upcoming film includes the hook, “Based on the classic novel by Daphne de Maurier, author of ‘The Birds’ and ‘Rebecca,’” there’s only one way to interpret it: this movie is going to be, or will try its damnedest to be very Hitchcockian. Does…

‘It Comes at Night’ Is a Devastating Dread-fest of Paranoia and Anguish

Originally posted June 12th, 2017 on thedistantcloseup.com WARNING: One Minor Spoiler Ahead Hype can be a dangerous thing to fall under. Sometimes we get our hopes up a little higher than we ought to, though it isn’t always our fault, as in some instances, it’s a result of poor and misleading marketing. One second, you’re…

‘Norman’ Is Capably Acted, But Too Often Leaves the Audience Disengaged

Originally posted May 31st, 2017 on thedistantcloseup.com Whatever you’re trying to be in life, whatever heights you hope to scale, one thing you need most is to find at least one person who is ‘Team You.’ Also, you better pray that person, or those people aren’t the Normans of the world. Portrayed by Richard Gere, Norman is…

‘The Lovers’ Is a Caustic ‘It’s Complicated’ for Terrible People

Originally posted May 30th, 2017 on thedistantcloseup.com We went into some detail last Tuesday about how complicated relationships can be with The Little Death, and though the standard romantic comedy may elicit the same message from a surface perspective, the ultimate conclusion from the lot of them is that finding romance is simple if you adhere…

Despite a Solid Start, ‘The Wall’ Fails to Maintain Momentum

Originally posted May 22nd, 2017 on thedistantcloseup.com Single space thrillers are often interesting in concept considering they have to somehow make up for their limited mobility, so to speak, but they are equally easy to get wrong. What made 2010’s underrated Devil such a fun watch wasn’t just its murder-mystery set-up that consistently brought new twists and…

‘Alien: Covenant’ Stumbles Through Apologizing for ‘Prometheus,’ But It’s a Step Forward All the Same

Originally posted May 19th, 2017 on thedistantcloseup.com WARNING: There will be spoilers, though we’ll come to those later. Everyone has done, or will do at least one thing in their lives that requires a substantial amount of forgiveness. Imperfection is part of human nature, but as Ridley Scott found out with 2012’s Alien prequel Prometheus, it simply wasn’t acceptable….