The Wind, review, release date, dc wiki, dc comics, Budget, imdb Rating, Cast, Cast Salary 2019

Lizzy is a tough, resourceful frontierswoman settling a remote stretch of land on the 19th-century American frontier. Isolated from civilization in a desolate wilderness where the wind never stops howling, she begins to sense a sinister presence that seems to be borne of the land itself, an overwhelming dread that her husband dismisses as superstition. When a newlywed couple arrive at a nearby homestead, their presence amplifies Lizzy’s fears, setting into motion a shocking chain of events.


Initial release: 5 April 2019 (USA)
Director: Emma Tammi
Distributed by: IFC Films
Screenplay: Teresa Sutherland
Producers: Christopher Alender, David Grove Churchill Viste

 

Critic reviews

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The woman walks out of the cabin, the wind whipping all around her. Her white dress is bloodied. She’s carrying a baby, which isn’t making a sound; the two men staring at her are equally silent. (We eventually hear a howl of pain coming from offscreen.) Later, we see her standing over a grave … only there isn’t an infant in the coffin, but an adult female. The men finish burying her, then they saddle up the horses and leave for what may be a days-long trip. She’s left standing there, glimpsed through a barn door Searchers-style, completely alone.
Some seven minutes in, director Emma Tammi’s feature debut The Wind has already given you 90-percent of what you need to know about her homesteader horror movie. The landscape these people live on is pitiless, stark, violent, haunting. Men are stoic and strong, but also somewhat useless; they’re often A.W.O.L. as well. Women are isolated to a frightening degree and left to fend for themselves. You’re going to get classic Western iconography, and it’s also going to get fucked with a bit. Don’t expect the chronology of events to be presented in order. And most of all, the vibe is going to be heavy frontier-gothic with liberal doses of feminized psychological dread. If you’re thinking “Repulsion by John Ford,” you’re more on the right track than you could possibly know.

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Two couples, two pregnancies and two dead bodies right up front make “The Wind,” Emma Tammi’s first narrative feature, a frontier ghost story with very human stakes. And maybe a very human explanation: Like Tommy Lee Jones’s marvelous 2014 Western, “The Homesman,” this pioneer chiller shines a gender-specific spotlight on the ways isolation and hardship can ravage a woman’s mind.

The first time we see Lizzy (an intense Caitlin Gerard), she’s exiting her log cabin bearing a bloody bundle and wearing a traumatized expression.

“How did she get my gun?” she asks her husband, Isaac (Ashley Zukerman), and their new neighbor, Gideon (Dylan McTee), whose erstwhile wife, Emma (Julia Goldani Telles), is about to follow her newborn into the ground. Frequent flashbacks show Emma’s gradual descent from emotional fragility to hallucinatory breakdown as a religious tract about demons becomes an obsession. Soon Lizzy, left alone while Isaac fetches supplies, is also beset by terrifying, shape-shifting apparitions. Their provenance and intentions are unclear, but Lizzy, a staunch German immigrant, isn’t about to give in to her fears.

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tmospheric if narratively thin, “The Wind” (similarities to the 1928 silent film of the same name are coincidental) kicks up a competitive dynamic between the two women that further muddies the psychological waters. Teresa Sutherland’s nonlinear screenplay emphasizes the godlessness of the setting, while terse dialogue and a moaning, percussive sound design enhance its oppressive loneliness.

The movie’s most striking aspect, though, is Lyn Moncrief’s arresting cinematography, which turns the vast vacancy of the plains into both hostile observer and hellish metaphor. The story might finally slip its leash, but the baleful mood holds firm.

Storm Boy , review, release date, dc wiki, dc comics, Budget, imdb Rating, Cast, Cast Salary 2019

Storm Boy lives a lonely life with his reclusive father on a desolate coastline, but when he forms a close bond with a pelican, Mr. Percival, his life takes a new and unexpected turn.
Initial release: 17 January 2019 (Australia)
Director: Shawn Seet
Screenplay: Justin Monjo
Producers: Michael Boughen, Matthew Street
Production companies: Ambience Entertainment, Screen Australia

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Critic reviews

There are elements of the author Colin Thiele’s classic children’s book Storm Boy that, if not adapted for the screen with the right sensibility, risk creating an experience about as uplifting as a story involving drug addicts collapsing in the gutter with needles in their arms.

The director Henri Safran got the balance right in his excellent 1976 version, infusing an elegantly constructed film with light and dark elements that resonate across all age groups, evoking the child in the adult and the adult in the child.

The director Shawn Seet (who has worked mostly on television shows, including Hiding, The Code and Underbelly) and screenwriter Justin Monjo (who penned Spear and Jungle) are less successful this time around. Whereas the tone of the original film was a delicate mixture of wistful and inspirational, the rebooted Storm Boy is more melancholic – at times, to put it bluntly, an epic downer. It is also, perhaps reflective of the current times, considerably more political, italicising the message of environmental conservation that was previously implied.

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Recent allegations of sexual misconduct against Geoffrey Rush, which he denies, have cast a shadow over the release of the film. Rush plays an older version of the titular character, Mike “Storm Boy” Kingley, who is now a board director, preparing to vote on whether a mining company can lease areas of the beautiful coastal land he grew up on.

One of the first scenes outside an Adelaide office building depicts a protest against mining in the Pilbara, and Kingley is asked by a reporter whether he still has a conscience: an early indication that the film’s sentiments will not be subtle.

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In a meeting room high up in the building, Kingley observes a grey and foreboding metropolis – starkly contrasting the glistening aqua water and silky sand dunes of Coorong, South Australia, where much of the film is based. There are intense grey clouds, rumblings of thunder and heavy rain. The room’s floor-to-ceiling glass window shatters and everybody exits except for Kingley, who, as if in trance, walks towards it, noticing a pelican outside perched on a light post.

It is a strikingly surreal opener, with a rich cinematic texture that comes and goes throughout the rest of the film. Seet and the cinematographer Bruce Young (who recently shot the excellent Blue Murder: Killer Cop and the laughable Bite Club) indulge in fish-eye style compositions, with blurry edges that evoke a dreamy past. That past involves Kingley as a child (the fresh-faced Finn Little, who has great presence) living on Ninety Mile beach with his father Tom (Jai Courtney, delivering a fine performance as a reserved but not unemotional man).

Father and son are cut off off from the world. But, as the grown-up Kingley explains to his granddaughter, the conversations between them forming a bedtime story framing device, “one day the world came to me.”

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We observe his young self fostering motherless baby pelicans, one of whom becomes the family pet, Mr Percival. This beloved character – a fixture of our national cinema and literature – is a gregarious human-loving bird, preferring to point his long schnoz in the direction of people rather than the water. The protagonist receives friendship and spiritual counsel from local Indigenous man Fingerbone Bill (the naturally charismatic Trevor Jamieson).

Teen Spirit, review, release date, dc wiki, dc comics, Budget, imdb Rating, Cast, Cast Salary 2019

A shy teenager dreams of escaping her small town and pursuing her passion to sing. With the help of an unlikely mentor, she enters a local singing competition that will test her integrity, talent and ambition.
Initial release: 12 April 2019 (USA)
Director: Max Minghella
Production company: Automatik Entertainment
Producer: Fred Berger
Cinematography: Autumn Durald

Critic reviews

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I’m a true believer in the power of a great pop song. Often derided throughout culture (even in a film like “A Star is Born”), pop music can truly express emotion in ways that other art forms do not. The hook disguises the depth, allowing a great emotional undercurrent to reach people in a way other music genres do not. People who write off pop music as disposable simply haven’t heard good pop music. One of the best qualities of Max Minghella’s directorial debut “Teen Spirit” is that it understands the transformative power of a great pop song and uses music by artists like Robyn and Annie Lennox to amplify that theme. Sadly, the film doesn’t live up to the depth of the music that seems to have inspired its existence. Yes, a song like “Dancing on My Own” can inspire someone to follow their dreams and become a pop star, but there’s not enough to “Teen Spirit” beyond that observation—and anyone who’s heard Robyn knows that already

 

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The great Elle Fanning plays Violet, a Polish teenager living on the Isle of Wight with her single mother. She works a job she hates, sulks through school, and generally seems to detest her life. But she sings at an open mic occasionally, and she has a beautiful voice—Fanning did all of her own singing and she does a phenomenal job with the music, further proving she can do pretty much anything. It’s one of those dingy bars in which the person on stage is lucky if even one of the audience members claps. This is not Ally at the club meeting Jackson Maine like in “A Star is Born.” This is a young lady expressing herself to an audience that barely cares. Except there is one person that claps.

That person is a retired opera singer named Vlad (Zlatko Buric), who recognizes Violet’s talent. When a singing competition show a la “American Idol” comes to town, Violet asks Vlad to be her manager/guardian, scared to ask her mom to help. She tries out for the show, and makes it through the first few rounds, which means she’s headed to London for the live TV broadcast, at which point the country will decide her fate. Violet is clearly remarkably talented, and she’s quickly forced to navigate the tricky waters of impending fame to make sure her career doesn’t end before it begins.

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The biggest problem with “Teen Spirit” involves the stakes. There aren’t many. We don’t get to know Violet well enough to be overly concerned about her fate. I like Elle Fanning a great deal, and she doesn’t do anything wrong here, bringing more depth and charisma to the part than most other actresses would have, but Minghella never figures out how to get us invested in Violet’s story. It’s the kind of storytelling for which the word ‘generic’ depressingly applies. Violet is a likable character, especially in the hands of one of our most likable actresses, but that’s literally about all that “Teen Spirit” has to offer. It doesn’t have the social commentary of “Vox Lux” or the high melodrama of “A Star is Born,” leaving us with almost nothing in their place. “Teen Spirit” is simply the story of a talented girl who finds a way to use said talents.

The Public, review, release date, dc wiki, dc comics, Budget, imdb Rating, Cast, Cast Salary 2019

An act of civil disobedience turns into a standoff with police when homeless people in Cincinnati take over the public library to seek shelter from the bitter cold.
Initial release: April 5, 2019 (USA)
Director: Emilio Estevez
Screenplay: Emilio Estevez
Distributed by: Universal Pictures
Producers: Emilio Estevez, Alex Lebovici, Steve Ponce, Lisa Niedenthal

Critic reviews

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As civil liberties get increasingly squeezed in the Trump era, The Public takes on a compelling sense of urgency. On the surface, the movie is a shallow but vigorously paced entertainment from writer-director-producer-star Emilio Estevez about a group of homeless people who refuse to leave a Cincinnati Public Library after closing hours because, well, it’s freezing outside, the shelters are full up and they might die. Fired up by the media, who invent a hostage situation (fake news!) for ratings, the cops send in a team of law-and-order headbusters to expel these interlopers who mistakenly believe the public library actually belongs to, y’know, the public.

The film is not based on a true story — but the fact that it could be lights a socially conscious fire under the familiar beats of the plot. Estevez plays Stuart Goodson, the head librarian who sympathizes with the sit-in, especially after he learns that at least one homeless man has already died from exposure to sub-zero temperatures. That’s when Jackson (a superb Michael Kenneth Williams), one of the homeless leaders, informs him that his group — 70 strong — will peacefully defy the orders of library administrator Anderson (Jeffrey Wright) and stay put after closing time. Stuart and his colleague Myra (Jena Malone) offer support, as does Angela (Taylor Schilling), the flirty manager of Stuart’s apartment building.

The forces lined up against them include Josh Davis (Christian Slater), a prosecutor and publicity whore who thinks a few sensational headlines will heat up his run for mayor. Alec Baldwin excels as Detective Bill Ramstead, the police negotiator, who tries to defuse the situation, but finds himself distracted by the fact that his addict son has gone missing. And it’s not helping that local TV news reporter Rebecca Parks (Gabrielle Union) is less interested in disseminating the truth than in upping her national profile.

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In the U.S., homeless populations have increasingly turned for daytime shelter to public libraries, which provide not just relief from the elements and a relatively safe, calm environment, but also internet access that may be the only available means of job/housing networking or long-distance communication for most of them. Their presence is an annoyance to some, and a frequent trial to staff — but so far no one has tried to revoke general access to this last bastion of free indoor public space. (But give them time.)

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Emilio Estevez’s “The Public” savvily deploys this circumstance for a commentary on up-to-the-moment social issues that’s also a curiously old-fashioned, uplifting dramedy redolent of Frank Capra and William Saroyan. With the writer-director himself as a classic fed-up Average Joe who leads a crew of lovable misfits (i.e. homeless people) in a largely comic rebellion against The Man, this somewhat anachronistic, over-rigged crowd-pleaser-cum-“message movie” at times seems too cute and simplistic for the harsh realities it touches on.
Nonetheless, it largely works. As in Estevez’s not-dissimilar, starrier ensemble piece “Bobby” 12 years ago, this conventionally crafted expression of “Hollywood liberal” empathy consistently engages despite the relative obviousness of its dramatic tactics. Whether it will find much of an audience is another matter — movies about the homeless have almost always been a tough sell.

During a record-setting brutal Midwestern winter, librarian Stuart (Estevez) doesn’t mind going to work at all — the heating system is on the fritz in his apartment building, exasperating both residents and the new building manager (Taylor Schilling’s Angela) he’s flirtatiously friendly with. The same impulse draws much of Cincinnati’s homeless to the main library every day, where they can escape the subzero temperatures outside that are literally freezing some of them to death each night.

This particular day is otherwise nothing special, bringing the usual amiable sparring from Stuart’s colleague Myra (Jena Malone) and a kerfuffle or two provoked by mental illness among some of the indigent patrons. But our protagonist has developed relationships with most of his “regulars,” and can quell most problems that come up without need of security personnel.

Division 19 , review, release date, dc wiki, dc comics, Budget, imdb Rating, Cast, Cast Salary 2019

In the near future, prisons have turned into online portals where subscribers get to vote on inmates’ fates.
Initial release: April 5, 2019 (USA)
Director: Suzie Halewood
Music composed by: Paul E. Francis
Producers: Suzie Halewood, Christina Varotsis
Screenplay: Suzie Halewood, Anon

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Critic reviews

“In the future, prisons have been turned into online portals where paying subscribers get to vote on what felons eat, watch, wear and who they fight. Panopticon TV is so successful it is about to be rolled out to a whole new town. When the world’s most downloaded felon escapes, the authorities set a trap to reel him in. The bait is his little brother who has so far managed to avoid detection.”

 

It’s a reasonably smart, somewhat timely riff on Current Conditions rendered in a dry, slow action satire, a picture lacking a charismatic lead or much in the line of entertainment value.

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In 2039, the online faces of the Resistance are mocking us for eating and staring at our cell phones, “stuffing your faces while the world burns.” The hectoring hoodie-wearing spokesman declares that “We’re gonna bring down your house and watch it burn.”

Twenty years in the future, “Anonymity is a crime,” and being “off the grid” and “unregistered” means you could officially disappear — and not just in the digital sense.

Hovering drone gunships keep watch over the cities, CCTV cameras are pretty much every where and small drones can track and trace anybody Central Control chooses to watch.

The Nanny State has taken on Nazi State totalitarianism. A drone barks through its speaker, “Smoking is not permitted in the street…you have ten seconds” to put out your smoke and move along.

But the power here isn’t so much in elected or anointed authority. It’s in corporations, especially Panopticon Interactive. They have created the most addictive streaming reality TV of the day, tracking a prison inmate 24/7, like an incarcerated “Truman Show.”

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And their public face, Nielsen (Alison Doody of “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade”) is dreaming bigger. In a nation where the incarceration rate long exceeded the crime rate, corporations have control of the prisons and have found fresh ways to monetize them.

That’s why Nielsen has turned Hardin Jones (Jamie Draven) into a star. He’s the unwilling, unwitting, brawling spokesmodel for product placement in prison togs. He has no idea he’s being watched.

“He’s had more drugs pumped into him than Central America,” Nielsen crows. “Crime’s down. Consumerism’s up. What’s not to like?”

Her bigger idea? “New Town,” a planned community where convicts interact with one another and the general public, watched (on your streaming device) as they “earn their way back into society.” Or don’t. By committing crimes, acts of violence on their neighbors? Maybe.

 

Peterloo, review, release date, dc wiki, dc comics, Budget, imdb Rating, Cast, Cast Salary 2019

In 1819, British forces charge on a peaceful pro-democracy rally at St Peter’s Field in Manchester, England, which results in the Peterloo Massacre.
Initial release: April 12, 2019 (United Kingdom)
Director: Mike Leigh
Distributed by: Entertainment One Films
Production companies: British Film Institute, Film4 Productions, Thin Man Films
Nominations: Golden Lion, Volpi Cup for Best Actress

Critic reviews

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Mike Leigh’s “Peterloo,” about a notorious episode of political violence, is for most of its running time a riot of verbal eloquence. One of the characters, Henry Hunt (Rory Kinnear), takes “Orator” as an honorific, like “Reverend” or “Doctor,” but his rhetorical gifts hardly set him apart. High-flown phrases pour from the mouths of activists at meetings, judges on the bench and politicians in the halls of Parliament. Orotund syllables drip from the mouths of government ministers, military officers and property owners in private consultations. Radicals rouse the rabble with vivid images of oppression and fiery exhortations to revolt.

Every so often, someone will remark that the time for talk is past, that what is needed now is action. But part of the argument of this brilliant and demanding film is that words are deeds, that language matters. Language is a weapon in the arsenals of power and resistance alike, and if you listen closely to the motley idioms and accents that fill the soundtrack (punctuated and underlined by Gary Yershon’s musical score), you can hear the currents of history moving.

This is not just a matter of accuracy with respect to the look and sound of the past, though Leigh and his crew see to that with characteristic artistry, as they did in “Topsy-Turvy” and “Mr. Turner.” The production and costume designers (Suzie Davies and Jacqueline Durran) and the director of photography, Dick Pope, create a plausible, breathing picture of England in 1819, and Leigh’s script takes pains to capture the texture of the time. Surely this is as close as we can hope to come to experiencing what people saw and how they spoke in various corners of Regency society, from the royal boudoir to the taverns of Manchester.

But the past, if it is a foreign country where people do things differently, is also a mirror. We can see our own world in its contours if we look from the right angle.

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British writer-director Mike Leigh has often included a dose of social commentary in his films, whether comedies (“Life Is Sweet”), tragedies (“Naked”) or biographies (“Mr. Turner”). In his historical drama “Peterloo,” social commentary is joined at the hip with political commentary, resulting in a study of dark times in 17th-century England – specifically Leigh’s hometown of Manchester – that led to the heinous incident known as the massacre at Peterloo.

The name is a play on words, referring to the Battle of Waterloo, site of Napoleon’s defeat, which is seen in passing in the film’s opening moments. It’s from there that exhausted British soldiers stagger their way home – in this case to Manchester – only to find that their families are dealing with exorbitant living costs and ever-rising taxes. Yet, at the same time, foolish government officials, singing the praises of the victorious Duke of Wellington, decide to give him a gift of 750,000 pounds. The poor working class? What poor working class? Who are they but a bunch of troublemakers?

It’s from that point that Leigh’s slow-paced, very talky film begins its long build toward its inexorable climax. It should be no surprise that this is slow and talky; that’s kind of a Leigh trademark. The difference here, and the reason this film is going to be a challenge to sell, is that Leigh and company have gone overboard in delivering their message, in attempting to show that history repeats itself, that a story of a government ignoring the needs of its people is extremely relevant today.

The poor working class folks of Manchester want representation in the government, want lower taxes, want to be able to live a life that isn’t all about just scraping by. Families talk about it quietly in homes. Soon friends gather in pubs and get a little more animated about it. Eventually there are larger and louder town hall meetings. “Something must be done!” proclaim the participants.

But the government magistrates – you can call them judges – regularly pass down harsh sentences on poor people who have committed petty crimes. And after “office hours,” the magistrates get together to have a laugh about the worthless working class. Most of them refer to the lowly citizens as rabble and believe that the only thing they would understand is the rod. The magistrates want to “crack heads.”

 

The Haunting of Sharon Tate, review, release date, dc wiki, dc comics, Budget, imdb Rating, Cast, Cast Salary 2019

Married to filmmaker Roman Polanski, actress Sharon Tate is a rising star who’s about to have her first baby. Plagued by terrifying premonitions, Tate sees her worst nightmares come true when she encounters members of the Manson Family cult.


Initial release: April 5, 2019 (USA)
Director: Daniel Farrands
Music by: Fantom
Production company: Skyline Entertainment; ETA Films; Green Light Pictures; 1428 Films
Distributed by: Saban Capital Group, Voltage Pictures

 

Critic reviews

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This summer marks 50 years since cult leader Charles Manson and his followers murdered actress Sharon Tate and four others in her home on Aug. 8, 1969, in addition to Leno and Rosemary LaBianca the next day.

Hollywood is marking the anniversary of the Tate-LaBianca murders in three films: Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon A Time In Hollywood, IFC Films’ Charlie Says and the first of the bunch, The Haunting of Sharon Tate, a horror flick that re-imagines the actress’ final days. It is now available on VOD and opened in select theaters over the weekend.

Writer-director Daniel Farrands says that the anniversary had little effect on the conception of the movie. The premise came to mind on the set of his previous movie, The Amityville Murders, which added a supernatural twist to the 1974 murders that inspired The Amityville Horror. He chose to adapt a new crime movie in a similar style.

“I wanted to do a story that would change the narrative so that the victims would be able to rise up and take their power back, if you will, from their would-be killers,” Farrands tells The Hollywood Reporter

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In a way, it’s gratifying to know that there are still filmmakers out there pumping out exploitation trash like The Haunting Of Sharon Tate. It’s a type of film we don’t see as much anymore, at least not outside of the niche world of underground horror: cheap, opportunistic, sadistic, artless, and completely shameless. In that way, it’s of a piece with the “Mansonsploitation” movies of the 1970s, particularly the infamous Last House On Dead End Street (1977), another film whose bargain-basement production values lend its scenes of brutal violence a certain unsettling snuff-movie realism. But it’s also very of the moment, as The Haunting Of Sharon Tate represents a more contemporary subgenre of exploitation cinema: the “mockbuster.”

As anyone who cares enough about movies to read this review presumably already knows, Quentin Tarantino has a film coming out this summer called Once Upon A Time In Hollywood. The film features Sharon Tate and Charles Manson as characters, and its original release date of August 9, 2019, exactly 50 years after the murder of Tate and four other people by members of the Manson family, raised enough eyebrows that it’s since been changed to late July. No such considerations have been given for The Haunting Of Sharon Tate, which co-opts a fan theory about Tarantino’s film in a craven attempt to beat that possible twist to theaters by several months.

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But don’t think that fudging the details means we’re spared from having to watch the murders. We still see Tate (Hillary Duff) and her good friends, hairstylist Jay Sebring (Jonathan Bennett), coffee heiress Abigail Folger (Lydia Hearst, whose casting is arguably the most clever thing about this film), and Polish expat Wojciech Frykowski (Pawel Szajda), die in extreme pain and distress alongside Tate’s groundskeeper, Steven Parent (Ryan Cargill). We see it twice, actually: First, in a prelude where Tate describes a “vision” she had of herself and Sebring being bled like pigs in her living room, and again in an extended, deeply upsetting sequence midway through the film. And if that’s not enough, we also get a long, unbroken shot winding through Tate’s home in the Hollywood hills, gliding past each mutilated body one by one, before stopping to linger on Duff’s fake pregnancy belly streaked with blood.

Pet Sematary, review, release date, dc wiki, dc comics, Budget, imdb Rating, Cast, Cast Salary 2019

DescriptionDr. Louis Creed and his wife, Rachel, relocate from Boston to rural Maine with their two young children. The couple soon discover a mysterious burial ground hidden deep in the woods near their new home. When tragedy strikes, Louis turns to his neighbour Jud Crandall, setting off a perilous chain reaction that unleashes an unspeakable evil with horrific consequences.


Initial release: April 4, 2019 (Indonesia, Australia)
Directors: Kevin Kolsch, Dennis Widmyer
Production company: Di Bonaventura Pictures
Producers: Lorenzo di Bonaventura, Steven Schneider, Mark Vahradian
Screenplay: Jeff Buhler, David Kajganich, Matt Greenberg

Critic reviews

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In Stephen King’s “Pet Sematary,” the big-city Creed family moves to rural Maine, inadvertently buying a plot of land that includes an ancient Indian burial ground. If you inter a beloved feline correctly in the creepy pet cemetery behind their house, it’s liable to come back … different. Same goes for cadavers of the non-cat variety — including humans hit by passing traffic. So goes the “Be careful what you wish for” premise of what many consider to be the horror writer’s scariest novel.

Of the 70-odd theatrical adaptations of the King’s oeuvre to date, maybe a dozen actually deliver. Amid that hit-and-miss filmography, the 1989 reanimated-animals chiller ranks among the most effective big-screen translations of the prolific author’s work. That earlier nightmare-inducing version of “Pet Sematary” isn’t so much remade as resurrected in co-directors Kevin Kölsch and Dennis Widmyer’s 30-years-later take, a mostly faithful cover version of that earlier film — with a few key twists, none of which will be revealed here.

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Sticking to the familiar, the movie opens with doctor Louis (Jason Clarke) and stay-at-home mom Rachel Creed (Amy Seimetz) driving to their new place, with daughter Ellie (Jeté Laurence), son Gage (played by twins Hugo and Lucas Lavoie), and a purring kitty in the backseat. Ellie seems excited to be living in the country, wasting no time before exploring her big backyard — which includes acres upon acres of dense forest, and what appears to be a funeral procession of kids in eerie animal masks, who lead her to the graveyard where many an animal “kilt on the highway” has been laid to rest.

The movie is disconcertingly efficient in laying out the essentials of its plot — four minutes in, passing gas trucks are hurtling down the deadly street in front of the Creeds’ new home, and three minutes later, Ellie has set foot in the “pet sematary” — but sacrifices the kind of eccentric personal details King uses to connect (or repulse) us with the characters he’s created, along with the more introspective look at grief and loss that made the novel’s ludicrous story so effective. The script, from “The Midnight Meat Train” writer Jeff Buhler, is practically all plot, all the time, which is plenty efficient for those simply looking to be scared but a little anemic when it comes to making audiences care about these people — all of whose deaths are intended to be seen as not only shocking but tragic.

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The exception is next-door neighbor Jud Crandall (John Lithgow), whose role was flat on paper but comes to life in the actor’s hands. Ellie’s first view of the old man startles her, since Jud looms tall and looks half-feral, with his sun-spotted face and mangy yellow streaks in his otherwise white beard. But there’s a kindness to Lithgow (which Brian De Palma subverted in “Blow Out” and “Raising Cain”) that expresses itself between the movie’s rudimentary lines of dialogue — a crinkle at the corner of his eyes, and a seemingly sincere concern for the young girl’s well-being — and before we know it, Jud has become both Ellie’s friend and our favorite character.

Shazam! review, release date, dc wiki, dc comics, Budget, imdb Rating, Cast, Cast Salary 2019

We all have a superhero inside of us — it just takes a bit of magic to bring it out. In 14-year-old Billy Batson’s case, all he needs to do is shout out one word to transform into the adult superhero Shazam. Still a kid at heart, Shazam revels in the new version of himself by doing what any other teen would do — have fun while testing out his newfound powers. But he’ll need to master them quickly before the evil Dr. Thaddeus Sivana can get his hands on Shazam’s magical abilities.


Initial release: April 4, 2019 (Russia)
Director: David Sandberg
Producer: Peter Safran
Screenplay: Henry Gayden
Production companies: Warner Bros., New Line Cinema, Seven Bucks Productions, The Safran Company, DC Films

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Critic reviews

As of this posting, Warner Bros.’ Shazam! has earned $56.825 million domestic (including $3.3 million in nationwide sneak previews) and $159 million worldwide (including $13.5 million in IMAX alone). Yes, that’s a lower opening than what we’ve been used to when it comes to “big” comic book superhero flicks, as it’s closer to the Fri-Sun frames posted by (not-adjusted-for-inflation) The Wolverine ($53 million in 2013), Ant-Man ($58 million in 2015) and Green Lantern ($53 million in 2011). Actually, in terms of DC or Marvel superhero properties, it’s the lowest Fri-Sun launch since Fantastic Four ($25 million) in 2015. But here’s the kicker: the New Line Cinema release only cost $90 million to produce and, due to the nature of the property, it may qualify as DC Films’ biggest turning point.

We’ve fortunately had very few folks arguing that the debut was disappointing or a miss merely based on the raw number. We had a surprisingly large number of folks arguing that Aquaman’s $72 million launch (again, counting sneak previews) was disappointing because it was a lot lower than the likes of Wonder Woman ($103.5 million in 2017) and Man of Steel ($128 million in 2013), seemingly indifferent to how the Christmas season box office operates. $1.1 billion worldwide later, maybe they’ve learned their lesson. It’s worth noting that Ant-Man eventually legged it to $519 million worldwide on a $130 million budget while The Wolverine earned $412 million worldwide on a $130 million, the second biggest gross for an X-Men movie at the time.

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Shazam! stumbled in China, earning $31 million from a $15.9 million opening day. If it legs like Batman v Superman (1.76x its $54 million launch), it’ll end with $51 million. There is no law saying that China has to like every major Hollywood tentpole and there’s no law saying that otherwise successful biggies have to score huge in China. China often is less a hitmaker and more a steroid to inflate the totals of already successful movies. Aquaman and Transformers: Dark of the Moon both got to $1.1 billion worldwide thanks to an over/under $300 million haul in China, but both big-budget flicks would still have passed $850 million global without a dime from China. The David F. Sandberg-directed fantasy is cheap enough that it requires no Chinese bailout.

Say what you will about the micromanaged ensemble flicks (Batman v Superman, Suicide Squad and Justice League), but DC Films is now batting 1.000 over the last three solo superhero movies. Throw in the less-successful Man of Steel ($668 million in 2013 with mixed-negative reviews and a frontloaded run) and they’re still batting 0.75. It’s not quite apples to apples, but the first four MCU solo flicks were Iron Man (yay!), Incredible Hulk (boo!), Iron Man 2 (eh…), and Thor (yay!). Moreover, the MCU began back when Thor’s $449 million worldwide cume would make it the biggest comic book superhero movie ever without Batman, Spider-Man, Iron Man or Wolverine. Captain America: The First Avenger could be a big hit with $371 million worldwide on a $140 million budget.

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Presuming it has halfway decent legs here and abroad (it opens in Japan on April 19), the film marks a real watershed moment for the beleaguered DC Films brand. Shazam! opened with $159 million worldwide despite being based on a B-level (or C-level?) character and lacking much in the way of “butts in the seats” star power. The opening was above the over/under $45 million tracking to the point where we must presume that the overwhelmingly positive reviews (91% fresh and 7.2/10 on Rotten Tomatoes) and word-of-mouth screenings and sneaks moved the needle. Moreover, and this is key, this weekend’s release is the third straight good-to-great DC Films solo superhero movie. After Wonder Woman and Aquaman, I’d argue Shazam! overperformed BECAUSE it was a DC Films flick.

The Best of Enemies, review, release date, dc wiki, dc comics, Budget, imdb Rating, Cast, Cast Salary 2019

The true story of the unlikely relationship between Ann Atwater, an outspoken civil rights activist, and C.P. Ellis, a local Ku Klux Klan leader. During the racially charged summer of 1971, Atwater and Ellis come together to co-chair a community summit on the desegregation of schools in Durham, N.C. The ensuing debate and battle soon lead to surprising revelations that change both of their lives forever.


Initial release: April 5, 2019 (USA)
Director: Robin Bissell
Screenplay: Robin Bissell
Story by: Osha Gray Davidson
Producers: Tobey Maguire, Robin Bissell, Danny Strong, Matthew Plouffe, Matt Berenson, Dominique Telson, Fred Bernstein

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Critic reviews

 

Our site’s beloved founder, Roger Ebert was fond of saying that it’s not what a movie is about, but how it’s about it. “The Best of Enemies” is about outspoken Black activist Ann Atwater (Taraji P. Henson) clashing over school integration with C.P. Ellis (Sam Rockwell), the Exalted Cyclops of the North Carolina Branch of the Ku Klux Klan. The duo co-chaired a charrette where the resulting majority vote would determine the fate of East Durham’s Black students who’d been displaced by a school fire. Though there was no love lost between them, Atwater and Ellis eventually became lifelong friends. For those of you still smarting from that racist police officer’s presumed redemption in “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” this movie has receipts for its Rockwell character’s redemption: Not only do we see the real Atwater and Ellis together during the closing credits, we’re told that Atwater gave the eulogy at Ellis’ funeral.

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This, dear readers, is what “The Best of Enemies” is about, and I have no problems with that. Truth is sometimes stranger than fiction. My issues all stem from how this movie is about that story. Director Robin Bissell’s script has more sympathy for, and pays more attention to, the Klansman than the Black children whose future may be forever damaged by the outcome of the charrette. Despite having an equal share in the story, Ann Atwater is pushed into the background, sometimes disappearing from the film for stretches at a time. When she’s on screen, she’s either inexplicably doing saintly things for her adversary or scowling at the camera. I had to think long and hard before I recalled a scene where Bissell’s camera wasn’t fixated on the angry face of Taraji P. Henson. C.P. Ellis gets to express all sorts of emotions that supposedly represent conflict and humanity; all Ann Atwater gets to do is fit the stereotypical role of “pissed off sistah.” Even the movie itself mocks her righteous anger, with White guys implying onscreen that she has PMS.

This movie isn’t just tone-deaf, it’s ass-backwards. Did the filmmakers read the room before dropping this insulting malarkey into theaters? Or maybe they read the room just right, considering that the repugnant “Green Book” just won Best Picture. Regardless, I cannot believe that, in 2019, I have to review a movie where my latest White savior is the same guy who’d put a noose on my neck and hang me from the nearest tree. Yes, in real life Ellis did see the error of his ways and change. But it damn sure didn’t happen the way this film presents it. In fact, Ellis’ big, stand-up-and-cheer Klan membership card-tearing speech makes absolutely no sense in the context of this narrative.

The Best of Enemies  Full Movie Watch

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And make no mistake, “The Best of Enemies” is a White savior narrative. We learn more about Ellis’ family, his Klan buddies and his gas station than we do about Atwater’s daughter, the displaced students or any other Black character besides Bill Reddick (Babou Ceesay), the guy overseeing the charrette. We spend more time in the racist dive bar where the Klan makes small talk than we do in the still-smoldering school where the Black children must take classes despite the smoke. More cinematic effort is spent mourning the loss of 650 gallons of gas at Ellis’ place of employment than the subpar conditions the East Durham citizens must contend with because their landlords and politicians are in cahoots with Ellis’ crew.