I have as soft a spot as any ’90s kid for Power Rangers and I’ve been walking on air since I heard they were getting a Darker and Grittier reboot, but this first trailer is, well, tragic.
Shin Godzilla is a monumental achievement in filmmaking. It’s a gleefully atypical disaster film. It’s an inspiring vision of the human spirit.
More than anything else, though, it’s Japanese.
Manmade and natural disasters
On March 11, 2011, Japan was struck by a magnitude 9 earthquake that originated 43 miles off the coastline. It was the fourth most powerful earthquake in the world since the modern recording system began in 1900. The earthquake physically shifted the Earth’s axis by 4-to-10 inches and permanently shoved Japan’s main island, Honshu, eight feet to the east. It triggered walls of water 133 feet high that traveled six miles inland. The disaster left 4.4 million households without electricity and 1.5 million without water. Almost 16,000 people died, and that’s just what’s officially confirmed.
We’ve already had one movie this year where Ben Affleck throws an autistic tantrum, and it was one too many. Now it’s two too many.
The Accountant tells the story of the title character (Ben Affleck) and how awesome and amazing and cool he is even though he has autism. The accountant is a contractor who uses his wicked autistic math skills to perform internal audits for international criminals — and a ninja, who can kill anyone who comes after him! In the movie, he’s auditing a boring, not criminal Chicago-based tech company after a saucy young accountant of their own, Dana Cummings (Anna Kendrick), discovers some inconsistencies. But we know he does audits for criminals, too, because treasury agent Raymond King (J.K. Simmons) tells us so. He’s looking for the accountant, but can’t find him because, despite his autism, the accountant is a super-badass who uses all sorts of fake names based on famous mathematicians!
Hey, did you know Lewis Carroll may have had autism? Autism!
Birth of a Nation fails to effectively tell its story on several fundamental levels. It is an inept execution of a concept that was weak to begin with.
The Birth of a Nation is a dramatic retelling of the Nat Turner (Nate Parker, who also writes and directs) slave revolt in 1831, which lasted two days and claimed the lives of 60 white people. Turner teaches himself to read at a young age, and instead of immedaitely murdering him, his owners give him a Bible, and he grows up to deliver sermons for his fellow slaves. Instead of portraying him as a crazy person who thought God talked to him, the film has young plantation owner Samuel Turner (Armie Hammer), who grew up alongside Nat, pimping him out as a black preacher to other plantation owners who think he can calm their slaves down. Nat Turner is exposed to groups of slaves in worse and worse conditions over the course of the film, and he eventually snaps and leads a rebellion.