Welcome back to my Home Movies! This week, the tragically under-seen Bros leads the charge of new releases. Plus, today is one of the better slates ever for the Criterion Collection, with both Malcolm X and WALL-E getting the honor. Read on for more…
Marketing issues aside, it’s a real shame that this romantic comedy tanked at the box office. Billy Eichner‘s raunchy rom-com has the brains, it has the laughs, and it has the heart. It’s truly a crowd pleaser, so shame on the crowd for not showing up. My interview with Bros filmmaker Nicholas Stoller is here, but in my TIFF review (here), I had this to say:
When Judd Apatow produces a big mainstream romantic comedy, you often know that you’re in for a treat. The same goes for the movies he helms, but when he godfathers a flick, there’s a true sense that the talent he tapped has a story they want to tell. With Bros, it’s Billy Eichner, who gets to not just co-write the film, but star in it too. Funny and raunchy, there’s also a tender heart beating at the center of this project, which really does shine through. Playing as one of the bigger crowd pleasers here at the Toronto International Film Festival, it was an absolute laugh riot.
Bros is as funny as any rom-com this year, but it’s also a cut above due to its cultural specificity. I’m a heterosexual male, but I was invested every step of the way in this relationship. We’ve hopefully come a long way from a time when a film like this would have been relegated to the art houses. This is a big, mainstream, studio comedy, and it deserves to be treated as such. Luckily, Apatow, Universal, and company seem to know they have a hit on their hands.
The Good House
Kaepernick & America
From The Criterion Collection: “One of the most electrifying heroes of the twentieth century receives an appropriately sweeping screen biopic, rich in both historical insight and propulsive cinematic style, courtesy of visionary director Spike Lee. Built around an extraordinary performance from Denzel Washington, Malcolm X draws on the iconic civil rights leader’s autobiography to trace his journey of empowerment, from a childhood riven by white-supremacist violence to a life of petty crime to his conversion to Islam and rebirth as a fearless fighter for Black liberation, whose courage and eloquence inspired oppressed communities the world over. Impeccably crafted by Lee and his closest creative collaborators, and buoyed by commanding performances from Angela Bassett, Delroy Lindo, Al Freeman Jr., and others, this is a passionate monument to a man whose life continues to serve as a model of principled resistance.”
From The Criterion Collection: “A high-water mark of digital animation, this prescient vision of a dystopian future is packaged within a dazzling pop-science-fiction love story, making for an urgent fable for our troubled millennium. It’s the twenty-ninth century, and humans have long since fled Earth for outer space, leaving WALL•E, the last functioning trash-compacting robot, to go about the work of cleaning up a pollution-choked planet, one piece of garbage at a time. When he meets EVE, a fellow automaton sent to detect plant life, the pair are launched on an intergalactic quest to return humanity to Earth. Transporting us simultaneously back to cinema’s silent origins and light-years into the future, WALL•E is a soaring ode to the power of love and art to heal a dying world.”