On DVD & Blu-Ray: June 12, 2018


The newly re-booted and freshly grounded Tomb Raider from Warner Bros. isn't necessarily bad, but it is pretty bland. There is a constant back and forth as one experiences the final product given there is real promise in what is essentially the entire first act as the viewer gets to know this younger, more inexperienced Lara Croft (Alicia Vikander) and the mysteries surrounding her father's disappearance as well as the issues she has been working through as a result of such. It is when the movie goes from slyly intriguing to full-on what the target demographic expects from a Tomb Raider movie that most of the intrigue disappears and what we're left with is a series of action sequences that look like the actual video game that inspired the movie. The more reliable and realistic visual effects become the easier it will be to lean on them and while this seems to have become more and more apparent over the last few years it seems especially glaring when the source material for an effects-laden blockbuster is that of a fully digital world. Once our titular protagonist gives into the life she was always meant to have, despite who she was when trying to make a living on her own accord being more interesting, Croft is quickly swept off to Hong Kong and then to the next level, I mean act, of the movie where we continue to go through stage after stage of Croft getting closer and closer to her end goal, which in this movie, has something to do with an ancient Queen that was said to command the power over life and death. Why someone would want to seek out much less break open the tomb of an ancient spirit that was capable of killing people simply by touching them is beyond me, but that is the quest we're sent on and the tomb we're meant to raid and so that is what unfolds. Naturally, there are layers and bad guys along that way that make this journey a little more interesting or at least a little more dramatic, but it no matter how much Tomb Raider wants to feel like a fun adventure tale it is far too gritty and routine for its own good. Unlike the released around the same time A Wrinkle in Time, which didn't necessarily work as a whole, but was at least trying to do something fresh and innovative with the material it was based on Tomb Raider instead works as a coherent whole in terms of style and tone, but does nothing with these features to accentuate them in any special or meaningful way. Full review here. D

Love, Simon is universal in that it's not just about a gay teen coming out to the world, but about how scary it is to introduce yourself to the world no matter who you are while specific enough to be a moment unto itself.

Some really nice performances here, most notably from Nick Robinson, Jennifer Garner, Josh Duhamel, Katherine Langford, and Logan Miller (who won't get the recognition he deserves for what he does here), while the MVP of it all may be Ms. Albright AKA Natasha Rothwell as this high school drama teacher who does not, I repeat does not, give AF.

There's also this great idea expressed by a character (IN HIGH SCHOOL!!) that concerns not being a casual person in the sense that they're not afraid to show how much something means to them...unafraid to show how much they care. That may seem like something small, but this straight white guy wishes someone would have assured him of this when he was seventeen. B

2008's The Strangers was one of the more disturbing movie-going experiences I had in my young adult years and my wife very much feels the same way and so we'd planned to go out and torture ourselves by watching this decade later sequel in theaters together, but alas this did not happen. Oh well, we'll now sit on the couch together late at night huddled under covers together and peak out every once in a while to see what The Strangers Prey at Night is all about. Here's hoping it at least lives up to the tone and inherent fear induced by the original.









I Can Only Imagine is the inspiring and unknown true story behind MercyMe's beloved, chart topping song of the same name that brings ultimate hope to so many is a gripping reminder of the power of true forgiveness.















Garden gnomes, Gnomeo & Juliet, recruit renowned detective Sherlock Gnomes to investigate the mysterious disappearance of other garden ornaments.