And So It Begins – National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation

The first cinematic movie we see each year is National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. It’s a timeless classic. It enhances our holiday spirit. This movie is highly quotable any time of year. Joy to the Griswolds.

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever – A Non-Spoilery Review #BlackPanther #WakandaForever #Marvel

I just saw Black Panther: Wakanda Forever and it was a terrific movie and a love letter to Chadwick Boseman. This serves as a transition film and sets the table for the future of the Marvel franchise. It says goodbye to T’Challa while bringing us an action-packed story. There were some unexpected surprises too. It is a definite must-see. Well done Letitia Wright and the rest of the cast.

The Nightmare Before Christmas, The Best Of Both Worlds

This movie is the best of Halloween and Christmas in one place. The visuals, dialogue, and music are classic Tim Burton and Danny Elfman. It’s a highly quirky movie that has a terrific story of wanting to change life up. Imagine Jack Skellington showing up at Christmas instead of Santa Claus. It’s quite the twist.

The Thing About Marvel Movies

In the Marvel movies, there is a requirement that in order to save the world you must blow it to kingdom come. Now I like those movies like the next nerd but there is such a scorched Earth philosophy that I find disturbing. Just think about the property damage from all the invasions and fighting between Hydra and SHIELD.

Perhaps I should just turn off my brain and just enjoy the ride. It’s also kind of hypocritical to be a critic when I have problems with critics in other stuff.

A Birthday Weekend Tradition, Starship Troopers

I have watched Starship Troopers on my birthday weekend for years. It’s bombastic science fiction satire at its finest. I like that stuff. Would you like to know more?

Friday Funny

Gru (voice of Steve Carell) and the Minions return in “Despicable Me 3.” MUST CREDIT: Illumination-Universal Pictures

Checking out Despicable Me 3 before watching Minions: The Rise Of Gru on Sunday. It’s good to have a laugh at the end of the week. The Minions make me laugh uncontrollably with their antics and hijinx and other stuff.

Downton Abbey: A New Era (Non-Spoilery Review)

Downton Abbey is one of the finest family dramas on both sides of the Atlantic. The intrepid Crawley family returns to the big screen in the continuation of their story. Like most families things change, times change, and people change. New opportunities for the family bring the past and the present to meet the future. As a fan of the TV series, I have found the movies to be quite good.

This movie does some great fan service while adding some new twists that tell a new story. We see lots of our favorite friends along with some new faces. I think you can appreciate this as a stand-alone film but it does help to see some of the TV series for helpful context.

Julian Fellowes is a terrific writer and you won’t be disappointed in this New Era of the story of Robert, Cora, and their children.

Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness – Non-Spoilery Review

Marvel Studios sure knows how to produce a movie. Benedict Cumberbatch is a great actor. This latest “Doctor Strange” presentation is dark, visually overwhelming (not in a negative way), and takes the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) into new places across the multiverse. The cast including Elizabeth Olsen, Benedict Wong, Xochitl Gomez, and Rachel McAdams put on great performances and have great chemistry together.

I would go as far as to say this had some serious elements of horror in it. Emotionally it will impact you. There are a few unexpected surprises in there too just like every other Marvel movie has. To the “Star Trek” fans out there you won’t be disappointed in seeing a couple of familiar faces (that is as much as I will say about that).

I recommend you see it on the big screen and if you can see it on IMAX that would be good too. The movie theatre is a great way to stay cool in these warmer temperatures. It’s a great flick.

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