Spike Walters

‘The Invisible Man’ is a True Heart Pounding Thriller

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 4.0/5.0
Rating: 4.0/5.0

CHICAGO – When I think of “The Invisible Man” the first thing I think of is the special effects… and that’s largely what it’s been about … from Claude Raines initial portrayal of “The I Man” in the 1930s, all the way through more modern takes like Kevin Bacon in the thriller “Hollow Man” (2000).

‘The Call of the Wild’ Offers Only Tame Adventure

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 2.5/5.0
Rating: 2.5/5.0

CHICAGO – “The Call Of The Wild” is an old fashioned story with some expensive and unnecessary technological upgrades. Forgoing man’s best friend in reality, the film replaces the featured dog with an entirely digital creation … which I can’t say was an improvement.

‘Sonic the Hedgehog’ is Fast & Furry But Not Funny

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 2.0/5.0
Rating: 2.0/5.0

CHICAGO – It may be damning with faint praise, but I can assure you that “Sonic the Hedgehog” is no longer the stuff of nightmares. The-Island-of-Dr-Moreau-like creation which seemed half human half hedgehog in the film’s first trailer, has been replaced by something more akin to the Sonic we know from video games and cartoons. He’s cute. He’s fast. But he’s not particularly funny.

‘Bad Boys for Life’ Are Just Too Old For This

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 2.0/5.0
Rating: 2.0/5.0

CHICAGO – “Bad Boys For Life” shows that maybe Will Smith isn’t too old for this kind of sh*t, but Martin Lawrence certainly is. This third installment comes 17 years after “Bad Boys II,” and 25 years after the original film unleashed director Michael Bay on an unsuspecting public. It aims to be just as bombastic as its predecessors, but without Michael Bay behind the lens and a lot more jokes about middle age, creaking bones and dying beards.

'Zombieland: Double Tap' Not As Fresh But Still Has Some Life Left

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.5/5.0
Rating: 3.5/5.0

CHICAGO - Zombieland: Double Tap lacks the freshness or the belly laughs of its predecessor, but I was surprised to see that this outrageously overqualified cast has not worn out its welcome. It’s ridiculous that three Oscar nominees and one Oscar winner headline a movie devoted solely to blowing zombies up. But when you employ Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone, and Abigail Breslin, you’re going to get some unexpected surprises.

'Hustlers' Is Flashy But Empty Stripper Crime Caper

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.0/5.0
Rating: 3.0/5.0

CHICAGO – This striper crime caper is flashy, buffed to a high gloss, and more entertaining and watchable than it has any right to be. But it’s never quite as smart, or layered as it seems to think it is.
Constance Wu from “Crazy Rich Asians” stars as the proverbial stripper with a heart of gold, Destiny.

"Chapter 2" Lacks crucial "IT" factor

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 2.5/5.0
Rating: 2.5/5.0

CHICAGO – “It Chapter 2” has some of the same problems as its source material, and the previous adaptation of the Stephen King spine-tingler. It has a great beginning, but the ensuing story never tops or reaches the same level as that first scene. So in Chapter 2’s slog on to an ultimately unsatisfying ending, we are witnessing a yarn literally unraveling before our very eyes.

Fireworks for the 4th in ‘Spider-Man: Far From Home’

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 4.0/5.0
Rating: 4.0/5.0

CHICAGO – “Spider-Man: Far From Home” is remarkably light on its feet considering it takes place in the wake of the events of “Avengers: Endgame.” After the five year period between finger snaps which is now referred to as “the blip,” Peter Parker (Tom Holland) and some of his classmates have returned the same age, while everyone else has gotten five years older.

Boot This Reboot of ‘Men In Black International’

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 2.0/5.0
Rating: 2.0/5.0

CHICAGO – “Men in Black International” is less a reboot than a frantic attempt at CPR for the once viable franchise … which never should have made it to a fourth installment. That’s not to say this is totally unwatchable. But it’s a kind of okay not-that-great-not-that-awful iteration which neither reminds us why we liked the series in the first place nor has much of a reason to exist.

Melodrama Mire in ‘Godzilla: King of the Monsters’

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 2.0/5.0
Rating: 2.0/5.0

CHICAGO – Everyone’s favorite city-flattening radioactive reptile, “Godzilla: King of the Monsters,” gets stuck in a mire of third-rate-TV-network domestic melodrama in this disappointing follow up to the thrilling 2014 reboot. But before I roar about the many ways this misbegotten miscreant messes up, let’s throw a few pebbles of praise.

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