Movies: Wish Upon, Dunkirk, Valerian

Wish Upon

This PG-13 Fantasy/Thriller is clearly targeted to the preteen/teen audiences.  It is not a new story.  In fact, it is one of the oldest stories in the entertainment genre.

The acting is just OK, maybe a weak passing grade but otherwise uninspiring.  Joey King, Ryan Phillippe, Shannon Purser and Ki Hong Lee are the headliners.

We selected  “Cliche”, “Stereotypical” and “Predictable” from the “Top voted Tags” list to best describe this film.

Don’t feel too bad if this makes it to your miss list.  It might be worth a look if you are on a long flight and need some help passing the 1 hour, 30 minute run time.



Most folks of a certain age or knowledge of 20th century history will recognize the name Dunkirk from WWII when, in 1940, Germany invaded France. This invasion cut off  British, French, Belgian and Dutch troops, leaving more than 400,000 trapped on Dunkirk Beach.

This film is arguably the best movie ever made on the topic.  It is an intimate view from the soldiers point of view.  The audible and visual production of what it was like and how it sounded are the most noteworthy from our perspective.  It makes for a stunning auditory and visual experience.

The genre is listed as Action, Drama, History, War with a PG-13 rating.  (Not sure how that happened!  We would caution it is not suitable for young audiences.)  The run time is 2 hours.

The cast includes Harry Styles, Tom Hardy, Cillian Murphy and Kenneth Branagh, along with a dozen other young British actors.

We will make early predictions for Oscar nominations for Best Picture, Original Score, Cinematography, Special Effects, Costume Design, Sound and Sound Editing.


Valerian & the City of a Thousand Planets

Oh my!  Where to begin?!  It is an epic size story by Director Luc Besson. (Remember The Fifth Element?!)  This time he has a $200 million dollar budget and special effects are front and center.

It is set in the 28th century in a city called Alpha, where thousands of life forms coexist when a dark force threatens to disrupt the peace.  The story gets muddled up quickly.  The script focuses on two main characters, played by Cara Delevingne and Dane DeHaan, who are determined to defend the city with an arsenal of superpowers.  The plot slips in and out of one implausible scene to another.

The super star here is the special effects.  They are stunning, constant and ground breaking.  These elements overshadow every other aspect of the film.

The rest of the cast is practically a who’s who of Hollywood but you hardly notice any of them.  (Except Rihanna, whose depiction of “Bubble” is quite provocative!)

It is rated PG-13 but much of the story is not really suited for children.  The genre is noted as Science Fiction and Action.  The run time is 2 hours, 17 minutes.

All said, this film will undoubtedly garner several Oscar nominations in technical categories.



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