2021 JULY MOVIE RANKINGS
Life can be a challenge. That’s why Movie Rankings for July are being posted August 10th. Despite this, I still managed to have a good month, garnering ten reviews in total.
I’m not sure what August holds. I’ve got one review on the way, but soon enough I will be getting further into pre-production on my latest film project, which is looking to shoot in October. I’m sure I’ll be watching movies between now and then (especially with a few theater flicks that I’m interested in seeing), but just in case, I’m letting you know.
This month consisted of Clint Eastwood, comedies, and a Marvel feature. Quite the hodgepodge, if I do say so myself, with nothing really stinking up the joint. Let’s see how everything has stacked up.
#6- “Let Him Go”
75%= Juicy Popcorn
Pros: Solid performances (great chemistry from leads Costner and Lane), rugged but sleek cinematography, and gets more entertaining/gripping as the story progresses.
Cons: The first act can be sluggish, and there are a few silly moments.
76%= Juicy Popcorn
Pros: Awesome action, cool song choices, heavily stylized (but fun in its own right), and an outstanding lead performance by Bob Odenkirk.
Cons: Pretty much John Wick lite, not much substance, and seeing an aging Christopher Lloyd take out baddies with a shotgun can make you laugh.
#4- “Black Widow” (2021)
84%= Juicy Popcorn
Pros: A solid one-off story, funny ensemble cast, a surprisingly smart script (when it comes to dialogue), and pretty entertaining.
Cons: The timing of this release made me care less for it.
#3- “Tommy Boy”
87%= Juicy Popcorn
Pros: Classic comedy, memorable moments, fun characters, Farley and Spade are iconic, and it’s an all-around enjoyable watch.
Cons: Follows the formula of all road trip comedies, and the balance of emotional and humor can be weak at times.
#3- “Letters from Iwo Jima”
87%= Juicy Popcorn
Pros: Interesting perspective on D-Day (telling it from Japan’s side), good cinematography, solid acting, and a brutal story.
Cons: Not the greatest war film I’ve seen, nor the most compelling. What more can I say?
#2- “Mystic River”
90%= Juicy Popcorn
Pros: Terrific performances all-around, it’s a story not necessarily about a case but about three friends (which is all the more interesting), and it’s an overall engaging experience.
Cons: There were some moments that I was confused as to why they were put in, including the ending, which felt elongated.
#2- “The Graduate”
90%= Juicy Popcorn
Pros: Brilliantly directed, fantastically acted, great cinematography, Simon and Garfunkel music, and a tense, sharply written ride to remember.
Cons: The motivation behind Elaine’s love for Benjamin makes absolutely no sense post her finding out what he did. That relationship kind of tore at the seams for me.
#1- “Unforgiven” (1992)
95%= Juicy Popcorn
Pros: A western done well, a flat-out epic final act, quite a few memorable moments, great acting, and beautiful cinematography.
Cons: The dialogue can be hokey at times, and it takes a bit to get the ball rolling.
Juicy Hall of Fame Inductee – “Million Dollar Baby” (2004)
96%= Juicy Popcorn
Pros: Heartbreaking/beautiful story, does a different take on the boxing film (by not really being a boxing movie), the performances are phenomenal, and the direction is great.
Cons: There are some elements to the story that follow the typical beats… but honestly, it’s nothing major.
Juicy Hall of Fame Inductee – “Apocalypse Now”
97%= Juicy Popcorn
Pros: A visceral experience with amazing cinematography, raw performances, fantastic production quality, a story that will shake you, and plenty of inspiration to draw on as a filmmaker.
Cons: I wasn’t as connected to the characters as I should’ve been (in terms of feeling for certain deaths).
Clint Eastwood’s “Unforgiven” takes the month of July, and will go up against “When Harry Met Sally…,” “Coherence” (2013), “The Elephant Man” (1980), “Dead Poets Society,” “Drive,” “A Quiet Place Part II,” and the rest of the months to compete for that coveted prize: The Movie of the Year.