The end of the first half of the year is nearly upon us. And while there have been a number of triumphs (to be acknowledged at the First Half of 2020 Movie Awards on June 28th), there have also been some big disappointments. Here are the 10 standouts:
We’ve rarely had the chance to see Robert Downey, Jr. play someone other than Tony Stark over the past decade. His long-in-development take on the classic Dr. Dolittle story is filled with problems, including the accent Downey, Jr. uses for the role. “Dolittle” is also a silly, incoherent and tasteless family comedy adventure that’s missing the spirit and drama we were craving.
I don’t hate this movie. In fact it’s my favorite out of the 10 on this list. But it feels like an opening act of the movie that it could’ve been if Nat Faxon & Jim Rash just dug deeper and allowed Will Ferrell and Julia Louis-Dreyfus to go even farther with the unique concept.
“BIRDS OF PREY”
I know… there are a lot of people who LOVE this movie. For me, it’s in this group mainly because Margot Robbie was fantastic as Harley Quinn in 2016’s “Suicide Squad”. But in her own film, with a story filled with faults, the pieces just don’t come together.
“SONIC THE HEDGEHOG”
This isn’t a disastrous video game adaptation. But it really isn’t fun. The only character that works is Sonic. Everyone else is miscalculated, including Jim Carrey who was unnecessarily given free reign to take us back to the ‘90s with his bad over-the-top shtick.
Mark Walhberg. Peter Berg. They’ve done some good (“Lone Survivor”, “Patriots Day”) and some not-so-good (“Deepwater Horizon”, “Mile 22”). Unfortunately this Netflix flick falls with the latter two.
The final film I saw in a theater before the shutdown. Period. End of story.
“THE LAST THING HE WANTED”
What a cast: Anne Hathaway, Ben Affleck, Willem Dafoe, Rosie Perez, Toby Jones. It’s the soap opera-esque, slightly far-fetched story that holds this one back.
Cool sci-fi, “Twilight Zone”-esque premise. But don’t give me a bunch of cliches, repetitive material and a weak payoff to go along with it!
I like Kumail Nanjiani and Issa Rae. But where’s the smart humor? It’s completely absent here.
Disney’s adaptation of the popular book series has been in the works (on and off) for nearly 20 years. You bring-in the experienced, respected Kenneth Branagh to direct and assemble a cast that includes Judi Dench, Josh Gad and Colin Farrell. But boy oh boy, this is one of the biggest clunkers of the past five years. And it didn’t need to be! For some reason, avenues were taken that simply don’t make a whole lot of sense.