After the Storm
A once-successful novelist turned financially and morally irresponsible PI (Hiroshi Abe, “Godzilla 2000: Millennium”) has one night to attempt reconciliation and mutual respect and understanding with his ex-wife, son and mother as a typhoon passes through his town. Peacefully shot with moments of true beauty from an often reprehensible protagonist, this film shows remarkable care and nuance in tackling themes of dysfunction.
Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart play reunited high school best friends—Hart is a middling accountant unhappy at work and at home, and Johnson is a CIA agent who needs a numbers whiz to figure out an arms deal. With Johnson channeling his Disney dad demeanor with a fun psychotic bent, this is not your average cop buddy comedy. Cold War 2
Following up 2012’s smash hit of the same name, cop thriller Cold War 2 revisits Sean Lau (Aaron Kwok) and Waise Lee (Tony Leung) and their squad of big names as they continue to balance police protocol with another terrorist attack. Despite strong performances from megastars Leung and Chow Yun-fat, we can’t help but stumble over the gaping plot holes and contrived cliffhangers. Ghostbusters
See review (above).
From director Park Chan-wook (“Oldboy”) comes a tale of a con man in 1930s Korea hoping to seduce an heiress for her money and the pickpocket he hires to be her handmaiden who ends up falling in love with her. A sensuously woven tale with nuanced characters by a master filmmaker.
Independence Day: Resurgence
The sequel to 1996’s “Independence Day” brings former President Whitmore (Bill Pullman) and scientist David Levinson (Jeff Goldblum) back together, along with a new generation of unreasonably beautiful scientists and pilots including our very own Angelababy. What’s different from the last one, you ask?
Well, they killed off Will Smith’s character because he’s too expensive, plus the entire fight with the grotesque aliens is silly and corny.
The Legend of Tarzan
Tarzan, played by Alexander Skarsgård (TV’s “True Blood”), returns back to the Congolese jungle with his wife Jane Porter (Margot Robbie) after a life of aristocracy in London. While it was entertaining to watch a shirtless Skarsgård swinging through the jungle with amazing CG gorillas, the story depicts a tired and retrograde white colonialist fantasy where a hot white dude can save an entire jungle.
Simon Pegg and Lake Bell are the leads of this rom-com which starts with the cutest of meet-cutes: a mistaken woman on a blind date, a perfect date, the heartfelt reveal, an unanticipated reaction, and in between, highflying highs, desperate lows, and a drunken meltdown to boot.
Me Before You
This tearjerker of Nicholas Sparksian proportions brings together a spunky barista-turned caregiver and her client, a former high-rolling banker who loses everything—his job, his closest relationships, and his will to live—after a motorcycle accident leaves him completely paralyzed.