365 Movies By Day Reviews of Movies I Watch that I Feel Like Writing About


Hostiles (2017)

The very first scene of Scott Cooper's (Crazy Heart, Out of the Furnace) under the radar Hostiles lets you know one thing right off the bat. We get a good 10-minute scene of a four-man group of Comanche warriors comes rolling out of nowhere, attacks a family of five in the brutalist of fashions, before burning down the ranch and taking off with their horses. After this scene, we get the title Hostiles pop up on the screen and we know quickly we are in for something different than Will Smith's Wild Wild West. This movie is not for the weak at heart. If you do not like tragedy, this film is not for you. If you have a stomach for, sometimes, senseless killing, characters who carry anger so deep that it burns their souls, and guilt so heavy that it tears lives apart, then this movie could be for you. If you crave a good old-fashioned western, then this movie surely will suffice. And if you want to see A-listers like Christian Bale (The Fighter, The Dark Knight Rises), Rosamund Pike (Gone Girl, A United Kingdom), Jesse Plemons (The Post, Other People), Timothee Chalamet (Call Me By Your Name, Lady Bird) and Ben Foster (Hell or High Water, Lone Survivor) continue to cement their names in Hollywood, you can't go wrong with Hostiles, easily one of the five best movies of 2017. Though it's unlikely to dethrone Wind River for me, it's doing its most darn make its case in the 11th hour.


The Post (2017)

I was able to preview Steven Spielberg's (Jaws, Saving Private Ryan) The Post two years before it was released to the public and even a year before it went into the production. It was called Spotlight and it won the Oscar for Best Picture. It was a fantastic movie. I wish I was more than kidding and with that, I could be more positive about my viewing of, what I hoped could be, one of the best movies of the year. That was months ago when I only knew of the movie title and that it starred Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep. In my head, I envisioned a movie about an army outpost and was very intrigued. But then I saw the preview and I wished the movie would have been about a post office instead. Then, when I was halfway through the movie, I wish I had been watching a movie about a bedpost, a fence post, or any other post that would have represented something far less predictable and boring than the waste of talent and time that was being projected on the screen in front of me. It was one of those times (I've had many recently) where I have been more than grateful for having a MoviePass. The thought of actually paying for some of these 2017 movies is even more terrifying than the disappointing IT, a movie that was neither scary nor good. And, with the exception of a couple of non-Oscar nominated movies that I am still looking forward to, but have yet to see (Hostiles, The Florida Project), The Post successfully ends 2017, the worst year for movies so far this century.


Bridge of Spies (2015)

Bridge of Spies. The ultimate cure for insomnia. Okay, okay, wasn't that bad. It actually started great. It was also based upon a true story so it had that going for it. But Lincoln, War Horse, and Munich were all Steven Spielberg directed movies as well and I found all three of those to be incredibly boring. I'm a huge Spielberg fan, but after doing a quick scan of his filmography, he hasn't directed a movie I've liked in a decade (2005's War of the Worlds). And I get wanting to branch off from the science-fiction/action-adventure genre that really defined him, but when it comes to these dramas, he seems to be missing something. Of course there are exceptions to the rule. Saving Private Ryan was one of the greatest movies ever made. So while I appreciate his desire to recapture the glory he achieved in a movie like that or a movie like Amistad or a movie like Schindler's List, I must then wonder why he's wasting his time on a movie like Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Worse, based on how poor that movie was, why his set to direct a fifth installment of the series. Long story short, this isn't the same Steven Spielberg of the 1980's and 1990's. There will be fans of the style of films he seems to be mostly concentrating on now (heck Munich, War Horse, and Lincoln were all nominated for best picture), but all three of these movies (as well as Bridge of Spies) just felt long and boring to me.