Movie Review

Veteran movie reviewer Jim Erickson shares his no-holds-barred opinions on Hollywood's best efforts. Tune in every Thursday for the latest review.

20th Century Fox

Mr. Holmes purports to be about Sherlock Holmes, but it presents us with a Sherlock Holmes in extreme old age, without a 221B Baker Street or a Dr. Watson, living in a rural area with no crime in sight, keeping bees.

Self/less starts out with a very promising thesis, when Ben Kingsley, a trillionaire who feels life slipping away from him, buys a new body into which his mind is transferred for a good many more years of life. But he gradually comes to realize that he has bought more than he bargained for-- he has thoughts and memories that are not his own, and they seem to be gaining control of him.

The most interesting thing about Magic Mike XXL was that the audience I saw it with was 90% women and adored it-- but to me, it was fun, but from beginning to end a male fantasy.

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl is a dreadfully bad title, but not exactly a bad movie, though in the end it doesn't seem to be about much of anything.

Dope is getting a lot of enthusiastic reviews, but I'm told it is not winning the Wichita moviegoers, and this is one case where I have to vote with the majority.

The cornball title suggests some kind of filmography of a composer and the movie itself skirts cliche plot elements, but, in fact, I'll See You In My Dreams is an A-One realistic drama, excellently written and beautifully acted, one of the best grownup movies in quite some time.

Blythe Danner plays a woman whose husband died 20 years ago and whose 14-year-old dog dies, but she isn't desolate or even conspicuously lonely. She hangs around with Rhea Perlman and Mary Kay Place and June Squibb (of Nebraska fame), and that seems to be enough for her.

Spy is not just another spy spoof, a genre which I tired of quite some time ago. Spy is more lighthearted and less plot-oriented than most, and since it stars Melissa McCarthy, it can't get too close to James Bond imitations.

San Andreas is definitely of the school of Mad Max and The Avengers and Furious 7: all action and no acting.

But it is a good deal better than I expected, largely because it has better characterizations and no hackneyed human villainy. In fact, it has not human villainy at all--all the violence and destruction are acts of unassisted nature.


Far from the Madding Crowd is a historical love story that respects Victorian England more than one might expect-- at no time does Carey Mulligan, in a remarkably fine performance, suggest a 20th-century heroine, which is the more remarkable in that she is a sort of early feminist.