Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
This just released rendition of Spider-Man takes place in a computer generated “multiverse” where seemingly all the spider-people/cartoons exist in alternate universes. Apparently there was/has been swarms of radioactive spiders floating around the spheres infecting cartoon characters en mass.
The good news is the approach is engaging, unique, thought provoking and, well, just a lighthearted ride through the eyes of those talented animators. It has a good cast of characters: Shamik Moor as Miles Morales, Jake Johnson and Nicolas Cage as Spider-Man, John Mulaney as Spider-Ham, Hailee Steinfeld as Spider-Woman. Mahershala Ali as Uncle Aaron. Liev Schrieber, Lily Tomlin, Chris Pine, Zoe Kravitz and a dozen more round out the voice actors.
It is rated PG for frenetic animated sequences of animated action violence, thematic elements and mild language. Parents with young children should be aware there is large scale destruction, frequent peril, lots of suspense, questionable language (crap, hell, dang, dumb…) but it is balanced with friendship, teamwork and such.
It’s listed as Action & Adventure, Animation, Kids & Family, Science Fiction & Fantasy. The run time is 100 minutes.
On the Basis of Sex
The much anticipated release of “On the Basis of Sex” is the story about the life of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the Supreme Court Justice, dating back to a 1970’s case about tax deduction and forward to her appointment to the Supreme Court in 1993. Judge Ginsburg this year celebrates 25 years on the Supreme Court.
True: Ginsburg attended classes for her husband when he was sick.
True: Husband Marty gave her the Moritz v. Commissioner Case.
False: Jane, their daughter, worked with Ginsburg growing up.
False: Women’s Rights Activist Dorothy Kenyon helped Gisnburg gain backing from the ALCU.
The acting makes the story believable. Felicity Jones plays Ginsburg as wife and mother. Armie Hammer plays her husband Martin. Cailee Spaeny plays the daughter. Justin Theroux, Kathy Bates and Sam Waterson give solid performances. Another 60 plus actors fill in the rest of the cast.
The film is rated PG-13 for some language and suggestive content. It is listed as a Drama with a run time of 120 minutes. It is a must see for history and current event buffs.
Welcome to Marwen
This is a unique film made interesting because it is based on a documentary about a man with Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome after being beaten nearly to death.
The cast is compact. Steve Carell does a good job as the victim, Mark Hogancamp. Leslie Mann is the neighbor. Merritt Wever works at the local hobby shop. Janelle Monae is a friend from rehab. Eiza Gonzalez is a friend at the bar where Mark works part-time. Another dozen actors round out the cast.
Audience response has been mixed. That’s a shame because it is ultimately about a hate crime, the collateral damage it caused, and the life long impact it had. That said, the story danced around several topics without explanation.
It is rated PG-13 for sequences of fantasy violence, disturbing images, brief suggestive content, thematic material and language. We do not recommend this film for children due to violence and subject matter. It is listed a drama running 116 minutes.