The Shack – Rated PG-13
Based on the New York Times best-selling novel, The Shack takes us on a father’s uplifting spiritual journey. After suffering a family tragedy, Mack Phillips [Sam Worthington] spirals into a deep depression causing him to question his innermost beliefs. Facing a crisis of faith, he receives a mysterious letter urging him to an abandoned shack deep in the Oregon wilderness. Despite his doubts, Mack journeys to the shack and encounters an enigmatic trio of strangers led by a woman named Papa [Octavia Spencer]. Through this meeting, Mack finds important truths that will transform his understanding of his tragedy and change his life forever.
Critics: according to Rottentomatoes.com, The Shack‘s undeniably worthy message is ill-served by a script that confuses spiritual uplift with melodramatic clichés and heavy-handed sermonizing – 16% of critics Like.
Blake: best selling Christianity based books, turned into films, have their obvious challenges with a secular audience and the only way more and better faith based film projects will be made, is to support the ones that are. My sources say persons of faith will receive a pleasant reminder of what they already know, while others may be put off by it’s intentions. Typical scenario.
Before I Fall – Rated PG-13
What if you had only one day to change absolutely everything? Samantha Kingston has everything: the perfect friends, the perfect guy, and a seemingly perfect future. Then, everything changes. After one fateful night, Sam wakes up with no future at all. Trapped reliving the same day over and over, she begins to question just how perfect her life really was. As she begins to untangle the mystery of a life suddenly derailed, she must also unwind the secrets of the people closest to her, and discover the power of a single day to make a difference, not just in her own life, but in the lives of those around her–before she runs out of time for good.
Critics: Before I Fall‘s familiar ingredients are enlivened by a fresh YA perspective and a strong performance from emerging star Zoey Deutch, according to Rottentomateos.com. 68% LIKE
Blake: this sci-fi, drama, horror focuses on bully Millennials, who just like everyone else who was once their age, have major relationship lessons to learn. My sources say there are important lessons to absorb and hopefully it’s 18-24 target audience, will.
Logan – Rated R
Mutants are gone–or very nearly so. An isolated, despondent Logan is drinking his days away in a hideout on a remote stretch of the Mexican border, picking up petty cash as a driver for hire. His companions in exile are the outcast Caliban and an ailing Professor X, whose singular mind is plagued by worsening seizures. But Logan’s attempts to hide from the world and his legacy abruptly end when a mysterious woman appears with an urgent request–that Logan shepherd an extraordinary young girl to safety. Soon, the claws come out as Logan must face off against dark forces and a villain from his own past on a live-or-die mission, one that will set the time-worn warrior on a path toward fulfilling his destiny.
Critics: Rottentomatoes.com notes, “Hugh Jackman makes the most of his final outing as “Wolverine” with a gritty, nuanced performance in a violent but surprisingly thoughtful superhero action film that defies genre conventions. 94% of critics LIKE!
Blake: all good things must come to an end, and after 17 years of playing “Wolverine”, time for Hugh Jackman to hang up his claws, and rightfully so. He’s entertained millions, and well, with this character. My sources say “Logan” will please X-Men fans, but especially those looking for a deeper story, one with a stronger sense of humanity. If this is truly the last we see of “Wolverine”, it’s a well crafted goodbye.
Enjoy your movie and weekend!