I didn’t expect 2021 to be a “great” year for movies, and it wasn’t. I fully expected it to be better than 2020—and it was—but we’re definitely still in low tide pandemic mode. Even so, as I started thinking about my favorite movies of the year, I was pleasantly surprised to find that I had enough candidates to make narrowing


Synopsis



A new adaptation of the hit musical about star-crossed lovers trying to find their way in the 50’s New York slums as they are in the middle of a massive gang war between the Jets and the Sharks. Tension escalates between the gangs, threatening the relationship. 



My Thoughts



Spielberg has done it again, but are any of us really surprised? Granted,


Encanto: three stars out of four



About an hour into "Encanto," my five-year-old niece leaned over and started asking me if the movie was almost done. This could mean a lot of things, and it could mean absolutely nothing, but it does support a gut feeling that the latest Pixar movie is geared toward adults a little more than to kids.



There's


Eternals - 2 Stars out of 4



Walking out of the “Eternals” press screening, the snarky jokes seem ready made. You could say something connecting the movie’s name to its two-and-a-half-hour running time, or just say it’s “Avengers, but boring.” Some of the criticism is unfair, because “Eternals” isn’t solely responsible for the glut of superhero burnout fodder it arrives in.


Movie Review(s): "Halloween Kills" - 2 stars out of 4; "Last Night in Soho" - 3 stars out of 4



I generally think of myself as a horror fan. I'm not a fan of all horror genres, but I do appreciate a good scary movie.



This week seems like a good time to address this idea, since there are two movies out


Reminiscence (2 ½ Stars out of 4)



Have you ever watched a movie and thought to yourself: “I like this world, but I want to hear a different story?”



Maybe it’s just me.



“Reminiscence” is a kind of sci-fi noir meditation on a universal sentiment, a mystery-thriller set in a post-apocalyptic future. But in spite of a strong cast and a compelling premise,


Free Guy (3 stars out of 4)



Shawn Levy’s “Free Guy” feels like a cross between a live-action “LEGO Movie” and the original “Tron.” If you consider yourself a gamer or a tech geek, you should be golden; but even if not, as long as you can roll with the nerd flow, it’s a good time.



The plot follows a glassy-eyed rube