BEN-HUR || The way I see it, this is just a $100 million advertisement for people to re-watch the original, Academy Award winning “Ben-Hur” that this is remake of. That can be the only reason this poorly execute, dismally marketed, inexplicably CGI heavy piece of work exists. To take on remaking arguably one of the most recognizable and honored films in history is a questionable feat in and of itself, but without someone like say director Ridley Scott to bring it to its former glory, this lands in the realm of films like “Pompeii.”
KUBO AND THE TWO STRINGS || Note that I believe Laika to be the head of the pack in the stop-motion animation game. There’s really no denying that, with “Coraline,” “ParaNorman,” and “The Box Trolls” under their belts. The work that goes into these films simply make them works of art, hands down. But on a level of personal taste, stop-motion has never really hit for me and the main reason I’ve seen those previous films was that they were nominated for an Academy award, and rightfully so. “Kubo and the Two Strings” is likely to do the same and for that, I will probably see it.
WAR DOGS || Sure, the last two “Hangover” films weren’t that great and “Due Date” was far far from great, but Todd Phillips is still a decent comedic director and “War Dogs” looks just different enough to warrant a viewing. Jonah Hill, Miles Teller, and Bradley Cooper are three decent reasons to see the film as well, with the two former actors starring as young gun runners. Hill look absolutely absurd with Teller delivering his brand of grounded sincerity.