Movie Review

Movie reviewer Fletcher Powell shares his opinions on Hollywood's best efforts. Tune in every Thursday for the latest review.

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M. Night Shyamalan has had a strange career. The director kicked down the door with 1999’s The Sixth Sense, then had a couple of fantastic follow-up films before falling hard and fast into self-indulgence and eventually making a few of what are considered the worst films of the past decade.

But then, all of a sudden, with 2015’s wonderfully creepy The Visit, and now his newest thriller, Split, it appears that Shyamalan is back. And what’s more, for the first time it seems like he’s actually having fun making movies.

Silence offers no easy answers. In fact, it may not offer any answers at all.

I can safely say that before Hidden Figures, I’d never once seen a movie that received two separate rounds of applause at the end. Without a doubt, this is a crowd pleaser.

And fortunately, that’s far from all it is. 

I’ll tell you a story—the story of a boy who had to grow up too fast and who met a monster, a monster with a powerful wisdom.

Well, this must be the most emotionally powerful Google search of all time.

Lion is one of those movies that would seem completely preposterous if it weren’t based on a true story, but as it is, it makes you wonder at how in the world life turns out the way it does.

The glory of those Gene Kelly musicals—you know, Singin’ in the Rain, An American in Paris—is the ease with which Kelly, and everyone else, for that matter, did incredibly difficult things. It never, ever looked like they were trying.

A funny thing about grief is how much time you spend wondering if you’re doing it right, and how much time you spend around other people who are wondering the same thing. Manchester by the Sea absolutely nails the confusion, frustration, and awkward weirdness that comes along with dealing with the untimely death of a loved one, maybe better than any movie I’ve ever seen.

The first few shots of Nocturnal Animals—I’m not going to tell you what they aremade me think we were in for a really grimy trash-fest, on the level of a much more serious version of John Waters. And this excited me. I love good trash.

But, no such luck. 

Let’s just get this out there right up front: Moonlight won’t just end up being the best movie of this year, it’ll end up being one of the very best of the entire decade.

Tell the judge—tell the judge I love my wife.

It’s not often that the climax of a movie lies in a single line of dialogue, and especially when that line comes directly before one of the most consequential Supreme Court cases in U.S. history.

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