Rick Famuyiwa’s high school comedy about avoiding gang trouble while finding one’s voice hits its stride early and doesn’t let up until the final credits roll. Shameik Moore as Malcolm gives a performance strong enough to keep us concerned with his high school trials: can he get his Harvard entrance essay completed and unload a few kilos of molly he’s found in his backpack?
Sometimes we look through the overlooked movies and find hidden gems, but Will Bigham’s debut, The A-List, isn’t one of those. As a comedy about the downside to popularity in high-school, it is too predictable with too few memorable moments to recommend to any but the most die-hard fans of teen movies.
As bio-pics go, Paul Soriano’s Kid Kulafu succeeds by laying off the hagiography to focus on aspects of Manny Pacquiao’s childhood that are shared by aspiring boxers everywhere.
A romantic comedy that probably was designed to cash in on the popularity of the “KathNiel” pairing, Crazy, Beautiful You doesn’t stray much from the Poor Boy/Rich Girl love story formula. However, the leads do produce a certain amount of warmth together that may make it worthwhile for fans of the RomCom genre and not just the couple.
As a children’s film, Kenneth Branaugh’s live action Cinderella is probably worth a visit for the high production values, lush sets, gorgeous costumes, and magical CGI. For adults, however, the movie offers nothing more than Disney’s take on the story from 1950 with no noteworthy changes that might offer a new perspective on the same old story.
Matthew Vaughn returns to familiar territory with Kingsman. With violence and a sexual reference guaranteed to earn an R-rating, but a story clearly aimed a teens, one wonders if the whole project was worth the effort.