By A.D. Beal

Apollo 11
A documentary comprised of previously unseen behind the scenes footage of the Apollo 11 mission.

Apollo 11 is more intense and narratively-rich than most documentary type movies. Director Todd Douglas Miller’s editing style of actual footage, and inspired perspective combinations are fantastic. Simple details such as audio directly over the stock footage are created with exemplary care. Even basic diagrams could easily have been part of the actual mission. Matt Morton’s score is absolutely heart-pounding and keeps you on the edge of your seat, even in the quiet moments. This film was a wonderful celebration of an important time in history.

Cold War
A man and a woman’s relationship over a 12-year span in the aftermath of World War 2.

In one and a half hours, Pawel Pawlikowski encapsulates more than a decade of two lives without a rushed feeling and it’s beautiful. Joanna Kulig and Tomasz Kot are cast perfectly. The two play a couple who both love and despise each other. It’s never overdramatic and just a joy to watch. The cinematography is beautiful, portraying a different tone in every location. You truly feel as if you are in a different time without the use of large, expensive sets. Cold War is one of the most underrated films of last year. It is a masterpiece that you must be sure to watch.

Captain Marvel
Carol Danvers searches for her past as she hunts with S.H.I.E.L.D agent Nick Fury for an invading force on Earth.

I found Captain Marvel frustrating. In its highs, it really showed the promise of the better film it could have been. Brie Larson shows that she can be a great Carol Danvers, but unfortunately an unconfident (in terms of tone) script lets her down when it came to dialogue and motivation. The supporting cast is wonderful, especially Ben Mendelsohn, who brings a new and interesting perspective to the invading aliens trope. The problems come down to the filmmaking, as the rapid editing, constant bathos and continuously fast paced tone comes off as if the film is worried that it will not keep the audience’s attention. I found this strange considering the cosmic element they have at their disposal. Also, despite the claim of 1990’s films being an influence, it never has that highly saturated, high stakes feel. The scenes on Earth are surprisingly stale given the budget and the director’s abilities.

The Kid
A new perspective on the confrontation between Billy The Kid and Pat Garrett… with a twist.

Vincent D’Onofrio shows potential in his debut, pulling stellar performances out of Ethan Hawke, Dane DeHaan and Chris Pratt. He also does well in terms of the setup and buildup of tension in the shootouts. The films downfall is in its pacing. It never slows down, jumping from one set piece to the next. Even when there is an emotional moment, the editing falls short in meshing the scenes together which causes a loss of impact that the scenes may have had. Luckily, its focus was in its narrative.