|Table of Reviews|
The Call of the Wild – Review
The Call of the Wild – Budget of $125 – 150 million – 1 hour and 40 minutes
Buck is a dog who is too big for the house and too tame for the wild. The town lets Buck roam wild and free because he belongs to Judge Miller. After Buck destroys Judge Miller’s important business meal, he makes Buck sleep outside. During the night, a man calls Buck’s name and offers him food. When Buck runs to the food and eats it, the man traps him inside the box. After days in the box, Buck wakes up in Yukon, Alaska. His California paws have never felt snow. After escaping his abusive captures, Buck is bought by Perrault and Françoise. They run a mail route through the Yukon river with sled dogs. Perrault believes Buck will fit in nicely but Françoise doesn’t. Before Buck starts his journey he bumps into John. John left his wife everything and heads to Alaska. Not for gold like many other men, but he travels for peace of mind. His son died and John has not been able to cope. Buck realizes John dropped his harmonica and runs to John to return it. John heads off on a ferry up north and Buck starts his journey as a sled dog. This chance encounter is the start of a call to the wild for them both.
Based on The Call of the Wild by Jack London, this live-adaptation is a feast for the eyes (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer). The CGI animators were able to give Buck full expressions without taking away his canine qualities. The actors work well within the blank spaces and have great cued interaction with Buck. To the parents, there are brief moments of animal abuse. However, the moments shown are done with shadows like a Disney movie. The rest of the movie is tame and full of heart. Just like Buck. While you won’t add this movie to your personal collection. It is worth seeing in the theaters to enjoy the beauty of Alaska and Buck.
I give it 3.5 out of 5 stars
Why don’t you stay outside and think about what you’ve done – Judge Miller
I’m not looking for gold – John
He’s just got California feet – Perrault
Save him – Françoise
Downhill – Review
Downhill – Budget Unknown – 1 hour and 26 minutes
Peter, Billie, and their two sons are ready to enjoy their ski vacation in Austria. While headed to the lobby, Billie notices there are only adults in the area. Charlotte informs Peter and Billie that families are staying in the lodge 20 minutes away. But they can visit that side of the lodge anytime they want. For Peter, this getaway means a lot since his father passed away 8 months ago. But he is texting his co-worker Zach every day. Zach is touring Europe with his girlfriend Rosie and, unbeknownst to Billie, Zach and Peter plan on meeting up in Austria. After a day on the slopes, the family goes to a mountainside restaurant for lunch. As they mull over what to have, they see snow coming down the hill fast. At first, they watch in awe. But as it comes too close for comfort, Peter grabs his phone and runs. Billie stays with the two boys and hunkers down. After the snow clears, Peter comes back, sits down, and orders soup. Billie is in disbelief. She believes Peter abandoned his family to die. Peter believes he saw they were ok and ran to get help. Now, their marriage and vision of fatherhood are in limbo.
The Force Majeure by Ruben Östlund remake ramps up to important talks about marriage, family, and duty (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer). But it just falls flat at the end with even more questions. While the leads give a strong performance, the script doesn’t deliver the storytelling necessary to keep you engaged. This movie should have gone straight to streaming or DVD, not the theaters.
I give it 2.5 out of 5 stars
Hashtag, get better hashtags. Hashtag, don’t use hashtags – Billie
She said we were supposed to celebrate our bodies – Peter
It’s black and white – Rosie