Dear Evan Hansen – Movie Review

TL;DR – A film with equal parts frustrating and problematic, but when the emotions hit, you can’t help but be caught up with it.     

Rating: 2.5 out of 5.

Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene

Disclosure – I was invited to a press screening of this film

Warning – Deals with themes regarding suicide

Dear Evan Hansen. Image Credit: Universal Pictures.

Dear Evan Hansen Review

Dear Evan Hansen is one of those films you have never heard of before or a film you have been listening to on repeat for years. For me, my first introduction to the film came from that first trailer that dropped this year, and that was a lot. But I go into this without the legacy of the musical to either help or hinder my experience with the film. However, now that I have seen the movie, well, ‘a lot’ was an understatement.

So to set the scene, Evan (Ben Platt) is struggling because he is about to start high school back after a long, difficult summer, and social interactions were not easy for him before. On the instructions of his psychiatrist, Evan starts writing letters to himself. However, when Evan goes to print one of the letters out at school, one of the troublemakers in the school Connor (Colton Ryan), intercepts it and takes it with him. Evan is expecting the worst but is surprised that Connor does not plaster it all over the internet. The reason becomes apparent when Connor’s parents Cynthia (Amy Adams) and Larry (Danny Pino), ask to speak to him. For Connor had taken his own life, but they had found Evan’s note. The only problem is that they think Connor was the one to write it.  

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Movie Review – Booksmart

TL;DR – While it follows a lot of the plot beats of similar films, it stands out on its own by focusing on the characters that are the heart of the movie.      

Score – 4 out of 5 stars

Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene

Booksmart. Image Credit: Annapurna Pictures.

Review

There are some scenarios that you see get plaid out in cinema over and over again. Indeed, one of the most popular scenarios is looking at that last few days before you graduate high school. I think it is so popular because it is something that nearly every person in the target audience has or will go through. So it becomes a nexus of past nostalgia and future promise. Either way, it is a scenario that I have seen put to film over and over again, especially in the R-rated comedy genre. However, in all the scenarios, I have never seen a film quite like this.

So to set the scene, high school is drawing to a close and class valedictorian Molly Davidson (Beanie Feldstein) and her best friend Amy (Kaitlyn Dever) are getting ready to survive the final day of classes. Molly is going to Yale and spent all her time at school making that happen, and Amy is getting ready to spend a summer in Botswana as an aid worker. However, Molly’s certainty about her past is shaken when she discovers that all the kids that partied throughout high school also got into top universities. Well, there is only one night left before graduation and Molly know just what to do, she needs to go to Nick’s (Mason Gooding) party so she can have the full high school experience and she is dragging Amy along with her.

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Movie Review – Detroit

TL;DR – Brutal, heartbreaking, and unfortunately as relevant today as it was in the 1960s

Score – 4 out of 5 stars

Detroit. Image Credit: Annapurna Pictures.

Review

Oh wow, I had no idea what to expect going into Detroit, only that it was taking a snapshot of the past event in the city. This was good in some respects because I came into the film with no preconceptions, but also I came into the film with zero preparation for what was about to come. I walked out of Detroit being completely emotionally drained, and I don’t mean that as a criticism, where so many other films like mother! (see review) have mishandled the use of tension, Detroit had me on the edge of my seat waiting for the moment when everything falls apart.

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