doctor-strange-sanctum-sanctorum-battle featured review 

DOCTOR STRANGE – Mad Worlds

Marvel Studios is on a roll. 14 films into their box office domination, they have this down to a science. Condemn them all you want for a predictable blend of colorful action, quippy humor, and lovable, flawed characters; they know the exact type of crowd-pleasing films they’re aiming for and reliably hit that mark. Doctor Strange is no exception to this pattern. Its hero’s journey is predictable, even if the details are unique. Its action is spectacular and fresh, even if the outcome feels preordained. Speaking of that action, Doctor Strange‘s…

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Kubo plays the Two Strings featured review 

KUBO AND THE TWO STRINGS – His Guitar Gently Weeps

Kubo and the Two Strings is an obscenely beautiful technical masterpiece, and may be the most incredible achievement yet in stop motion animation. While there’s obviously a layer of digital assistance rounding out the magic of Laika’s lively physical figures, the blend is wonderfully seamless. But that’s not all, because Kubo also boasts the best story yet of Laika’s impressive filmography. Kubo is about legacy – how it is shaped not only by our actions and values but through our families and the stories we leave behind. These themes are bolstered…

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The Little Prince - The Little Girl, Fox, and the Aviator featured review 

THE LITTLE PRINCE – A Masterpiece Lost to the Stars

For better and for worse, The Little Prince does a lot with very little. The film takes a short, surreal children’s tale and frames it within an all new story in the “real world” meant to contextualize the story’s importance. Despite the inherent arrogance of deciding a worldwide bestseller requires contextualization, the approach is actually largely effective… until it isn’t. Perhaps 50% of the film feels like an unquestionable animated masterpiece – gorgeous, thought provoking, and touching in ways that rival the best Pixar has to offer. Another 25% of…

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Pete's Dragon - Elliot found a stick featured review 

PETE’S DRAGON (2016) – I Won’t Be Your Candle on the Water

Pete’s Dragon is a tremendous disappointment – not because it’s bad, mind you – it’s a very functional movie – but because it has all the impact power of a whiffle bat, and it had all the elements it needed to be better. So much about this film goes right. Like a good remake should, it takes the basic premise of the 1977 original and gives it a unique and thoughtful twist. Forgoing any callback imagery, it avoids cheap nostalgia buttons to act as its own thing. This version follows…

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New Brother in The Secret Life of Pets review 

THE SECRET LIFE OF PETS – Bringing the Looney Back to Tunes

There was a time, not so long ago, when cartoons were just expected to make us laugh. Maybe a feature would have an exciting adventure, or a lesson about togetherness – y’know… family friendly stuff. But as long as it was a hoot to watch it was fulfilling its animated destiny. Then Pixar came along and ruined it for everyone. Their films had all of those qualities, plus human themes that nearly always brought us to tears. With a light touch, Pixar made us rethink what it meant to be…

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Ricky Baker is ready in Hunt For The Wilderpeople featured review 

HUNT FOR THE WILDERPEOPLE – Majestical

Hunt For the Wilderpeople is among the best movies that 2016 has to offer. It has heart and humor blended with a tonal balance that many directors can only dream of – often managing to be cartoonishly silly and deeply serious in the same breath. It also may star one of the most lovable odd couples ever committed to film – Ricky Baker and Hector “Hec” Faulkner. Julian Dennison is a revelation of charm as Ricky – foster child and gangsta aficionado. He boasts the same rough-around-the-edges earnestness that made the kids…

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Star Trek Beyond Crew review 

STAR TREK BEYOND – Boldly Going To All the Right Places

Star Trek Beyond is everything it should be. It’s a film about discovery, teamwork, hope, and the miracles and dangers of scientific achievement – a lot of the elements that were sidelined when J.J. Abrams rebooted the series. Beyond not only returns focus to these principle tenets of Star Trek, it’s also able to maintain the humor and excitement that made Abrams’ chapters such crowd pleasers. Simply put – It’s the best of both worlds. This isn’t to say that the film is a flawless masterpiece. Its editing and VFX…

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The BFG - Friendship review 

THE BFG: Too Big For it’s Own Good

The BFG comes to us courtesy of Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Entertainment and Disney. The film is every bit as full of whimsy that a pairing  between these two would suggest. Based on the novel by Roald Dahl (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory), the film follows a 10-year-old orphan named Sophie, who gets kidnapped by an otherwise Big and Friendly Giant, and finds herself with problems altogether unfamiliar to those from her previous life. Let’s focus on the good first. The acting in this movie is delightful. Ruby Barnhill, whose name…

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Captain America Civil War Concept Art 101 

THE MIGHTY MARVEL CHRONOLOGY – A Beginner’s Guide to the Cinematic Universe (Part 4)

This is the fourth and final (for now) week of The Powerwolf’s Beginner’s Guide to the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) and friends. PART 1 started with Captain America in WWII. PART 2 saw a world of heroes step into the limelight. PART 3 focused on the escalation of conflict now that superheroes have been revealed. PART 4 will take us right up to this year’s Captain America: Civil War. Things have hit a fever pitch. Superweirdos are falling out of the woodwork and the world is more concerned than ever. Something big is building, and for our heroes, things are about to go from bad to worse. You know what that means. More awesome movies for us!

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Guardians of the Galaxy Concept Art 101 

THE MIGHTY MARVEL CHRONOLOGY – A Beginner’s Guide to the Cinematic Universe (Part 3)

For the past two weeks, The Powerwolf has taken you on a guided tour of the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) and its related properties. PART 1 brought us all the way to the modern era of heroes, and PART 2 through the first assemblage of The Avengers, and its immediate aftermath. Now that we live in a world defined by superfolk, things have begun to escalate, and these connections are beginning to mean more than ever before.

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