Movie Review Weekly Roundup: July 25 – July 31, 2021

Old (2021) is directed by M. Night Shyamalan

The following is part of a weekly compilation of movie reviews from The Buzz Track staff. These movies were watched in the previous week, and the reviews were originally posted on Letterboxd.

Old (2021)

DIRECTOR: M. Night Shyamalan.
WRITERS: M. Night Shyamalan (screenplay), Pierre-Oscar Lévy and Frederick Peeters (book).
GENRES: Drama, Mystery, Thriller.
LENGTH: 1h 48min.
LANGUAGE: English.
★★☆☆☆ | WATCHED: July 25, 2021.

This movie is not exactly one of the best movies directed by M. Night Shyamalan. For me, this movie is on the same level, if not a notch right below The Happening (2008). I struggled with diving into this movie’s story. I was constantly pulled back into reality because I found the camera movements and visual framing very distracting. The camera is constantly panning around or spinning 360-degrees. When the camera is in a fixed position, it is framed with an extreme close-up. Or set up with a reverse angle to partially crop out and avoid the entire faces of the actors. I do like the concept of the movie. It might be something to appear in an episode of The Twilight Zone television show. However, the story feels prolonged and drawn out. It would have served better as a short film.

Night Walk (2019)

DIRECTOR: Aziz Tazi.
WRITERS: Aziz Tazi.
MPAA RATING: R – Viewer discretion is advised.
GENRES: Action, Crime.
LENGTH: 1h 37min.
LANGUAGE: English.
WHERE TO RENT: JustWatch or Prime Video.
★☆☆☆☆ | WATCHED: July 27, 2021.

The only reason I rented this movie is that Mickey Rourke appears in it. Even then, his performance was phoned in at best for a super small supporting role in a small handful of scenes. The story is basic and mediocre. The written dialogue is nightmarishly bad. And the acting performances are on par with small-town community theater exhibitions.

Crawl (2019)

DIRECTOR: Alexandre Aja.
WRITERS: Michael Rasmussen, Shawn Rasmussen.
MPAA RATING: R – Viewer discretion is advised.
GENRES: Action, Horror, Thriller.
LENGTH: 1h 27min.
LANGUAGE: English.
WHERE TO RENT: JustWatch or Paramount Plus.
★★★★☆ | WATCHED: July 28, 2021.

This creature feature was more fun and entertaining than I was expecting. To me, it was clear a vast majority of the movie was filmed inside a production studio building. This is fine by me. That creative decision allowed the production team to better control the environment for all the special effects they threw into the movie. I definitely would consider watching this movie again just for the heck of it, just for the thrill of it.

The Green Knight (2021)

DIRECTOR: David Lowery.
WRITERS: David Lowery.
MPAA RATING: R – Viewer discretion is advised.
GENRES: Adventure, Drama, Fantasy.
LENGTH: 2h 10min.
LANGUAGE: English.
★★★★☆ | WATCHED: July 31, 2021.

The movie is a pleasant surprise for me. I definitely loved the visual style of the movie and its tone. The story itself lends itself to be a Pilgrim’s Progress folktale about a character venturing out on a cross-country trek only to learn valuable life lessons along the way. There are a couple of moments in the movie that are definitely adult-oriented. Please avoid having your kids watch the movie. Unless, of course, you are willing to have a grown-up conversation with them afterward.

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