NOC Review: ‘Don’t Worry Darling’ is Not That Bad

I need to get something off my chest. We’ve gotten to a point where behind the scenes drama that has absolutely nothing to do with narrative, character, acting, etc. is affecting audience perceptions of movies, without audiences actually bothering to see a movie.

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‘Secret Origin of the Batwheels’ is a Fun Romp Through Gotham City

Just in time for Batman Day, Cartoonito and HBO Max are introducing the Bat Family and its colorful Rogues Gallery (and their sentient vehicles) to an all-new preschool audience with the half-hour special, Secret Origin of the Batwheels.

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NOC Review: The Truth is Disney’s Live-Action ‘Pinocchio’ is a Weird Movie

Disney remaking its classics has been a completely mixed bag thus far. Sure they make billions. But they’re incredibly hit and miss. And it’s so appropriate that I’m kicking off the review for the latest Disney remake, Pinocchio (2022), with such a statement, because it is a completely mixed bag. And a weird one at that.

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‘The Eightfold Path’ (An Endorsement)

If anything can be said about Abrams ComicArts books, it’s that they are undeniably beautiful. Aside from what lies within their pages, the books themselves are works of art. They are portable museums. The colors, the weight and heft of the paper used, the end paper designs, the cover images chosen, these make the books worth looking at. The stories being told? These make the books worth buying. Their Megascope imprint? These books are worth collecting.

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Jae-rim Han’s ‘Emergency Declaration’ Sticks the Landing

When a pilot declares an “emergency declaration,” everything is given priority to that plane as it is in the most imminent danger. All other planes are rerouted or grounded as resources are then directed to that plane until it can land safely. It is the first note to be shown in Jae-rim Han’s new film Emergency Declaration to establish the importance of this statement by the pilot.

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‘Tales of the Walking Dead’ is a Welcome Addition to the Franchise

I’m not gonna lie. I fell off The Walking Dead wagon years ago. Like a lot of fans, I checked out when Steven Yeun’s Glenn was killed off. And while the series, and its subsequent spinoffs, continued on, I never returned to the franchise. Until now.

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NOC Review: ‘I Love My Dad’ is Endearingly Funny and Real

Having a falling out with a family member you are close with can be difficult and the same can be said when you fall in love with a person you’ve never met online. Both experiences can leave you with the empty feeling of realizing you don’t really know them as well as you thought. In I Love My Dad, writer-director James Morosini crafts an endearingly funny and real film that displays that feeling honestly and cathartically.

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‘Bullet Train’ is Able to Find Hilarity in the Chaos

If there is anything that director David Leitch is good at, it’s that he is brilliant at finding the hilarity in the chaos. In his new film Bullet Train, based on the popular Japanese novel Maria Beetle by Kōtarō Isaka, Brad Pitt plays Ladybug, an “unlucky” assassin who is assigned to steal a briefcase from other assassins while on a speeding bullet train in Japan.

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NOC Review: Amber Midthunder Hits Her Target Dead On in ‘Prey’

The Predator film franchise centered on the clash between its race of a highly evolved race of aliens who hunt alphas for sport versus man. While its predecessors were as bloody and violent as the next, Dan Trachtenberg’s Prey goes back to basics with a primal and bloody David vs. Goliath story that not only is worthy of being a part of the iconic franchise but something could stand on its own thanks to Amber Midthunder’s astonishing performance that subverts tropes in a way that finally makes indigenous cultures the heroes of their own story.

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‘DC League of Super-Pets’ is a Menagerie of Laughs and Heart

Warner Bros.’ DC League of Super-Pets is a sweet, funny, and heartwarming story about the world from a pet’s point of view. The concept isn’t new. Plenty of films explore the relationships between a pet and its human owners. But director Jared Stern, who co-wrote the script with John Whittington, puts a playful twist on it by making it more about the pets rather than their superhero owners.

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NOC Review: If You’re Stuck Seeing ‘Paws of Fury’ It Could Be Worse

I’m not going to sit here and pretend Paws of Fury is a good movie, per se. But I will admit that it wasn’t nearly as bad as I assumed it was going to be. And the biggest reason you’ll be able to sit through it without a migraine comes down to one person: the legendary Mel Brooks.

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NOC Review: ‘Thor: Love and Thunder’ is Thunderously Entertaining and Full of Heart

Yeah. I know. We’re at a point with the MCU where critics and audiences are feeling fatigue, and becoming harder to please. And that’s totally reasonable. We get a Marvel Studios product at least once a month. And maybe some work better than others.

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Blumhouse Mastermind Jason Blum on His New Masterpiece, ‘The Black Phone’

There’s no argument that the Blumhouse of Horrors (aka Blumhouse Productions) has made as profound an impact on the horror genre as Marvel Studios has on comic book films. With just a few low-budget hits, Jason Blum put his stamp, not just on horror, but the entire film industry as a whole. We had a chance to sit with the head of Blumhouse, himself, to talk about his latest upcoming masterpiece, The Black Phone. Check out our interview here!

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Ethan Hawke on Creating a New Horror Icon in ‘The Black Phone’

Four-time Academy Award nominated actor, Ethan Hawke, is no stranger to the horror game. In fact, some of his most memorable turns came from two of the biggest hits Blumhouse has ever seen: The Purge and Sinister. Nearly a decade since both, and Hawke is back in the genre, teaming up with the mega-horror studio again. However, this time, things are different. Because unlike his previous horror works, in The Black Phone, Hawke is the horror!

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NOC Review: Decent ‘Lightyear’ Doesn’t Quite Reach Infinity and Beyond for Pixar

At the beginning of this movie there’s a disclaimer briefly explaining that this was the movie Andy saw, loved, and became obsessed with when he got his first Buzz Lightyear action figure. Andy really needs to see more movies.

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A Los Angeles Theatre Review: ‘Untitled Baby Play’

I will always cherish plays, especially original plays, that have global majority actors be the leads in content that have nothing to do with their race/culture but rather other pressing issues of life, which in this particular case is an upcoming baby shower for a group of friends and the “baby question” that all the women in Nina Braddock’s Untitled Baby Play individually grapple with. Presented by IAMA Theatre Company and currently playing at the Atwater Village Theatre, the play does a tremendous job giving each of the ensemble members a chance to shine.

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NOC Review: ‘The Black Phone’ is the Best Modern Ghost Story Since ‘The Sixth Sense’

This will be a weird way to start a review, but there’s a part of me that’s mixed on how I feel about Scott Derrickson and C. Robert Cargill departing Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. On one hand, though I enjoyed the Marvel Studios romp, I can’t help but wonder how much better it would have been if they had stayed on board to write and direct. On the other, and most importantly, I’m glad they were able to leave, because it meant that we got The Black Phone — honestly one of my favorite movies this year so far!

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‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’ is a Great Entry Point and an Even Greater Legacy Series

What even is a “diehard” Star Wars fan? Back in the early days of the franchise, when it wasn’t a franchise, a “hardcore” fan would be the ones camping out at their local theater the night before — a tent and sleeping bag to fight back the cold. All was worth it to be among the first to see Luke’s adventure come to a triumphant conclusion (for now).

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‘The Bob’s Burgers Movie’ is a Sweet and Savory Animated Murder Musical Comedy

At some point in time of an animated TV sitcom’s life, fans wonder when their beloved show will make that leap from the small screen to the big screen. But unfortunately, it doesn’t necessarily happen to all of them. Then there’s the worry about justifying the film’s existence or if it’s a sign that the sitcom is jumping the shark. And when all is said and done, it may have taken too long to figure it out.

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The Projection of ‘Men’ May Lead to the Projecting of Men

I don’t doubt that when Alex Garland began work on his latest project, Men, that he suspected it would release at such a relevant time. Civil unrest is at an all-time high for a number of reasons — one of which involves a large percentage of the population daring to ask for basic rights over themselves — really any time since the founding of this great nation could be considered a relevant time. But it’s true, Men was already shaping up to be quite the controversial movie before the general audience got a chance to see it.

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NOC Review: ‘Top Gun: Maverick’ is a Fun, Feel-Good Flight

Once again, audiences will feel the need! The need for speed! So thank god Tom Cruise exists. There’s no stopping the nearly 60-year old supersonic super star. And even after a generation of iconic roles and box office hits, he still keeps on soaring.

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‘Inbetween Girl’ Shows How Maturity Sometimes Means Accepting Your Mess

The road to adulthood is messy, imperfect, and unkind. Media depictions of adolescence tend to rule these realities out, or otherwise forgoes depicting representation of this demographic at all. But the truth is, sanitizing the experience does not hide the mistakes and many questions that will inevitably be made along the way. 

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