Writer-director Drew Goddard’s talky, delicately constructed, but dangerously overstuffed 60s set suspense mystery Bad Times at the El Royale is an overlong, but curiously still underdeveloped bit of entertainment that wins one over through the sheer force of the performances contained within it and a handful of good ideas.
The high concept “based on a true story” comedy Tag starts off refreshingly like a more genteel and heartfelt reworking of The Hangover, but gradually the film’s manic energy, goodwill, and creativity starts getting chipped away thanks to an emerging mean streak that threatens to derail everything likable.
British filmmaker Edgar Wright has always imbued his films with specific, idiosyncratic, and florid sensibilities, but his latest effort – the action comedy Baby Driver – is his most assured and intricately constructed work to date. A passion project for the filmmaker over the past decade, there aren’t any details – large or small – that haven’t been lovingly thought out and executed. It’s a masterful bit of storytelling and direction. Every inch of every frame and every seemingly inconsequential sound effect or character foible get delivered with relentless, accurate vigour. It’s writer-director Wright’s most perfect film, and it’s doubtful that any other studio films released this summed could hope to clear Baby Driver’s ludicrously high set bar.
Opening this week at theatres across the country: Ben Affleck stars and directs the heist-thriller, The Town; Emma Stone lends her charm to the high school comedy, Easy A; plus a look at the animated Alpha And Omega, and the horror film, Devil.