Thursday, October 22, 2015

Week of October 23 - 29 (Rhoades)

Tropic Overview

Murray to Depp, De Niro to Blunt, Brolin to Moore,
You’ll Find Your Favorite Stars at the Tropic Cinema

Reviewed by Shirrel Rhoades
Film Critic, Key West Citizen

You don’t have to be an astronomer to see the stars. Simply buy yourself a ticket to the Tropic Cinema.

“Rock the Kasbah” follows Bill Murray to Afghanistan, where he plays an inept rock manager on tour with his last remaining client. But then he discovers a talented singer who might just be his ticket to success. The Wrap observes, “Bill Murray is Bill Murray is Bill Murray in a comedy that’s little more than a schtick delivery system with some third-act personal growth thrown in for good measure.” And JoBlo’s Movie Emporium decides, “Bill Murray’s performance and some good bits in the first half make it ultimately worth checking-out.”

“Black Mass” gives us Johnny Depp in the balding guise of gangster Whitey Bulger. In this true story, we discover Bulger was using the FBI to advance his South Boston crime spree. Mountain Xpress says, “It’s well-made. It boasts a lot of good actors. It proves (if proof were needed) that Johnny Depp can underplay.” And 3AW concludes that it’s “a grim, sturdy crime tract that owes everything to Depp's immersive portrayal.”

“The Intern” presents Robert De Niro as a retiree who accepts an intern position with an e-commerce start-up. Ann Hathaway plays the young founder who learns that age and experience also count. En Filme deems it “a light comedy that offers great entertainment and also touches on women’s rights and the elderly at the workplace …” while Cine Premiere observes, “The chemistry between Hathaway and De Niro feels sincere and is what keeps the story up and going.”

“Everest 3D” recounts a tragic climb that results in several deaths. Josh Brolin and Jake Gyllenhaal headline this chilly ascent. El Financiero notes that “director Baltasar Kormákur’s film excels because it never romanticizes the mountain and he doesn’t drag out the last moments of those who died in it.” declares it has “visually stunning imagery and a solid A-list cast.” And Seven Days happily finds that it “splits the difference between documentary reenactment and hyped-up Hollywood drama.”

“Sicario” delivers Emily Blunt as a conscience-driven FBI agent assigned to a task force on the hunt for a Mexican drug lord.” Q Network Film Desk calls it “a powerful experience that forces us into a violent confrontation with our own ethical worldview, challenging any tidy notions of right and wrong.” Spirituality and Practice describes it as “a tense drama.” And Daily Express says the film “pulls no punches.”

“Freeheld” offers up a love story about a decorated New Jersey police detective diagnosed with cancer who wants to leave her pension to her partner. But the forces that be -- Freeholders -- try to block this. Boston Herald tells us, “Director Peter Sollett wisely keeps the focus on the two very private women at the center of a storm that never should have broken.” And Sacramento News & Review proclaims, “The story is righteous and Julianne Moore and Ellen Page are strong … all to the movie's credit.”

And “The Walk 3D” plays to your vertigo while recreating Philippe Petit’s historic high-wire walk between the twin towers of the World Trade Center. Balancing on the wire is Joseph Gordon-Levitt as the daring French tightrope walker. Reforma says, “Not only is director Robert Zemeckis a master of SFX and storytelling, in this one we really get the experience of a lifetime.” Naret News calls it “a heart-stopping spectacular.” And Philippe Petit says of Gordon-Levitt’s performance: “He became me.”

There you have it, lots of stargazing at the Tropic Cinema.

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