Friends, I've been taking a break from flying to work on a special project. No flying = fewer nights in hotel rooms, pecking away at my keyboard. Still, here are some short notes on some films I've seen these last few weeks.
Captain America: Civil War
Captain America: Civil War features a battle between different factions of The Avengers, the team of superheroes we in the audience have come to root for over the course of Marvel’s films. It marks the first time I’ve ever felt conflicted watching one of these superfights, and that is a remarkable achievement. In this fight, nobody’s evil; nobody wants to kill anybody; everyone just wants it to stop.
“Heartbreaking” isn’t a word I’d ever expected to write in regards to a superhero movie, but there it is. Civil War presents us with an “everyone’s right” scenario that forces noble people into a conflict they don’t want and that can’t be resolved with a simple, “Old Man Withers is the real villain here” reveal. That’s the stuff of heartbreak. Well done.
The Heat is a simple buddy-cop comedy elevated by sharp writing and the significant talents of Melissa McCarthy and Sandra Bullock. It’s laugh-out-loud funny, moves right along, and practically begs for a sequel. Sign me up.
The Nice Guys
Shane Black can do no wrong.
Sicario stars Emily Blunt as an FBI agent with PTSD. She’s in the middle of a major counter-drug operation, however, so she doesn’t have time to deal with it. This leaves her accruing more and more damage as the film progresses, lending a harrowing shading to an otherwise unremarkable film about ultraviolent cartels and the agencies who combat them.