Movie Review Weekly Roundup: February 6 – February 12, 2022

Doctor Zhivago (1965) is directed by David Lean, starring Omar Sharif and Julie Christie.

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.


Hickok (2017)

DIRECTOR: Timothy Woodward Jr.
WRITERS: Michael Lanahan.
MPAA RATING: Unrated – Viewer discretion is advised.
GENRES: Western.
LENGTH: 1h 28min.
LANGUAGE: English.
WHERE TO RENT: JustWatch or Prime Video.
★☆☆☆☆ | WATCHED: February 6, 2022.

What kind of made-for-television movie production is this? It features a few recognizable names appearing in it, for example, Luke Hemsworth, Trace Adkins, Kris Kristofferson, and Bruce Dern. None of them are showing their A+ effort in this movie. After perusing through the director’s filmography on IMDb, I do not think any of his movies received a star rating average higher than six out of ten possible. Hickok is a less-than-stellar movie.


Doctor Zhivago (1965)

DIRECTOR: David Lean.
WRITERS: Boris Pasternak (screenplay), Boris Pasternak (book).
MPAA RATING: PG-13
GENRES: Drama, Romance, War.
LENGTH: 3h 17min.
LANGUAGE: English, Russian, French.
WHERE TO RENT: JustWatch or Prime Video.
★★★★★ | WATCHED: February 7, 2022.

Star-crossed lovers, political warfare, and a revolutionary upheaval between social classes; Doctor Zhivago is a story told on a grand scale with beautiful cinematography and music. Film director David Lean is a master of many epic movie adaptations with a hefty duration. I have watched this particular movie a few times already; I tend to discover something new each time. There are a few moments I have come to appreciate. For example, the scene when the viewer is hovering outside a frosted window watching Pasha read a letter Lara had written to him before they begin to argue over its content. In the scene, a candle is placed near the windowsill. It begins to warm the pane of glass, thawing away the condensation and ice as their argument reaches an emotional pinnacle. This movie is well directed and produced. It is worth watching a couple of times over.


Cloud Atlas (2012)

DIRECTOR: Tom Tykwer, Lana Wachowski, Lilly Wachowski.
WRITERS: Tom Tykwer, Lana Wachowski (screenplay), David Mitchell (book).
MPAA RATING: R – Viewer discretion is advised.
GENRES: Drama, Mystery, Science Fiction.
LENGTH: 2h 52min.
LANGUAGE: English, Spanish, Ukrainian, Korean.
WHERE TO RENT: JustWatch or Prime Video.
★★★★★ | WATCHED: February 8, 2022.

Now I know what would have happened if Agent Smith turned out to be Mrs. Doubtfire. Okay, so the movie bombed at the box office, and there was a backlash of racism by having actors portray multiple characters. Some of which were of ethnicity or gender different from their identity of origin. I believe the point of context for the entire story was the reincarnation of a soul repeatedly in a path of predestination regardless of the host body in which the soul takes form. For example, actor Hugo Weaving portrays a person who appears to be an agent of order and structure but honestly incites chaos in every manifestation. Every soul in the movie has a predetermined path to follow until their soul’s mission has been completed or run its course.


Who’s That Knocking at My Door (1967)

DIRECTOR: Martin Scorsese.
WRITERS: Martin Scorsese, Betzi Manoogian.
MPAA RATING: R – Viewer discretion is advised.
GENRES: Drama, Romance.
LENGTH: 1h 30min.
LANGUAGE: English.
WHERE TO RENT: JustWatch or Prime Video.
★★☆☆☆ | WATCHED: February 9, 2022.

Here is the directorial debut movie for Martin Scorsese. With Harvey Keitel in the lead role, it would be easy to believe this movie was a short jump away from inspiring Mean Streets (1973). However, it is a bit rough around the edges. Scorsese is trying to fine-tune his skills in directing the dialogue pacing for the actors and incorporating New York City as a supporting character.


The Long Kiss Goodnight (1996)

DIRECTOR: Renny Harlin.
WRITERS: Shane Black.
MPAA RATING: R – Viewer discretion is advised.
GENRES: Action, Crime, Drama.
LENGTH: 2h 1min.
LANGUAGE: English.
WHERE TO RENT: JustWatch or Prime Video.
★★★☆☆ | WATCHED: February 10, 2022.

This movie should remind us that Geena Davis kicks ass, and Samuel L. Jackson was still in the early stages of a long-running career as a wise-ass character who spits out more witty zingers in a single movie than he eats a complete meal in a single day.


Now and Then (1995)

DIRECTOR: Lesli Linka Glatter.
WRITERS: I. Marlene King.
MPAA RATING: PG-13
GENRES: Comedy, Drama, Romance.
LENGTH: 1h 40min.
LANGUAGE: English.
WHERE TO RENT: JustWatch or Prime Video.
★★★☆☆ | WATCHED: February 11, 2022.

The only reason I keep watching movies like this one is because of the long-running crush I have on Christina Ricci that dates back to when I was a teenager in the 90s.


The Fighter (2010)

DIRECTOR: David O. Russell.
WRITERS: Scott Silver, Paul Tamasy, Eric Johnson.
MPAA RATING: R – Viewer discretion is advised.
GENRES: Drama, Action, Biography.
LENGTH: 1h 56min.
LANGUAGE: English.
WHERE TO RENT: JustWatch or Prime Video.
STAR-SCORE | WATCHED: February 12, 2022.

Here is another story about an underdog athlete fighting his way to a championship boxing title. In this movie, we see an unhealthy underweight Christian Bale portray a crack-addicted sports trainer, which is disconcerting. “Underdog Sports Drama” is a movie genre with an audience who enjoys watching them. It is still good to know the director David O. Russell is a good storyteller.


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