Doing something different with this Review Round-up, it’s a combination of releases that came out this week (July 16th) and two for next week July 23rd. I’ve been fighting a cold so I’m behind on things and this is a good way to catch up and get ahead a little. First is Dogman. The film tells the story of Marcello, a timid dog groomer whose life is dedicated to supporting his daughter. He gets involved with cocaine and a local gangster and finds himself in trouble. After he gets out of jail he wants to right the wrongs done, but his neighborhood turns their back on him thinking he was more involved than what he was. He takes on the gangster to finally fix his life. It’s a decent movie and the lead is strong, but we’ve definitely seen similar movies before. The shy guy wants to fit in and be respected and can’t say no to the bigger gangster type. It’s a cool little setting and has dark coloring which fits the mood. I actually can see it being remade in the States despite it being a common storyline. I wanted to like it a bit more, but overall it’s not bad. The lead actor certainly carries the film.
Next is Don’t Look At Me That Way. This is the latest 3-way love triangle drama to come my way. It follows single mother, Iva, and her daughter Sophia. Sophia meets a neighbor Hedi and soon becomes friendly with the family. Hedi falls for Iva but the drama steps up when Iva’s father gets into the picture. Iva’s father wants to look after his granddaughter but something happens and lines get crossed. I won’t go into detail because the less you know the better. Like Dogman it’s a film we’ve seen before (to a degree) that I wanted to like more. Both lead actresses are good and it’s pretty sexy at times, but I wanted more from it. I’m not sure what exactly you’re supposed to take away from it other than jealousy is a bitch, but it’s well made and well acted.
Third is Criminal Minds: Season 14. Fourteen seasons into a series you know whether or not you’re a fan. My mom still likes the show besides a lot of cast changes over those 14 seasons. This season opens with an abduction but my favorite episode was the one dealing with The Tall Man myth. Like most of these types of detective/crime shows I’ve haven’t been been a huge fan and don’t usually watch until home video. But my parents watch them weekly and yearly so clearly there’s still an audience.
The next two films come out next week but I think it’s going to be a slow week so I’m putting them here. First is Master Z: Ip Man Legacy which is a continuation of the Ip Man storyline in a way. Donnie Yen is gone but Max Zhang returns as his character Cheung Tin Chi, from Ip Man 3. After his closed door loss to Ip Man in the third film, Cheung Tin Chi tries to build a quiet life with his son. He runs a small shop and tries to put his fighting days behind him. But a local gang is causing problems and when his shop and home are burned down almost killing him and his son, Cheung Tin Chi decides the only action is to fight back. Zhang is fantastic in the role taking over the reigns from Yen. You can never go wrong with Michelle Yeoh (playing a Triad boss) and Dave Bautista is always good. I do wish there was more Tony Jaa in it because I’m a huge fan, but Zhang easily handles the lead. The fight choreography is great and fans of Ip Man or The Grandmaster will certainly enjoy the film. I hope they continue this Master Z series because I liked it and it slides in nicely with the Ip Man lore. Definitely recommended for fans.
Last we have Weird Science: Special Edition. This 1980’s John Hughes flick has been restored from a 4K scan. It’s not considered a classic like The Breakfast Club or 16 Candles, but I like it just as much. I hadn’t seen it in years so it was cool catching up with it. Sure it doesn’t hold up by today’s standards, the way they make Lisa with their computer is laughable but it was the 1980’s man, we didn’t know any better then. Kelly LeBrock was a stunner and certainly got attention in the 80’s. Anthony Michael Hall was the kind of geeks back then and this might have been his geekiest. He gets more laughs opposite Ilan Mitchell-Smith’s more straight-laced character. Plus Bill Paxton is always good and Robert Downey Jr. is a bully! The film looks great restored and this new release is packed with bonus features including interviews, archive documentary, TV spots and much more. I can see fans eating this up because the film hasn’t looked or sounded better since it first came out. It doesn’t have the ensemble cast of other Hughes’ flicks but I think I like it because of that. Hall steals the film and we all loved Kelly LeBrock.