‘Living’ Review: Is It a…?

Leave a comment

Bill Nighy the Living Guy (CREDIT: Sony Pictures Classics/Screenshot)

Starring: Bill Nighy, Aime Lou Wood, Alex Sharp, Tom Burke

Director: Oliver Hermanus

Running Time: 102 Minutes

Rating: PG-13

Release Date: December 23, 2022 (Limited)

Before I saw Living, I’d never before ordered anything from the cafe at the Angelika Film Center in SoHo, NYC. But since you can take the cafe food into the theaters and I’m not a huge fan of traditional concession stand options, it was a no-brainer to finally change that! As for what I actually ordered – a piece of peanut butter cake – it sat a little heavy in my stomach. And that didn’t really pair well with the movie on screen. In general, that’s the case with an overly quenched appetite, but especially so this time, as Living is meant to be light on its feet as Bill Nighy tries to go off and have a laugh at life. Of course, in contrast the cancer diagnosis hangs heavy. So does this movie make me go “It’s a living!”? No, but in retrospect, maybe it should have.

Grade: 3 Shocked Reactions at a New Hat

Mini-Movie Review: ‘The Hustle’ is Too Loud and Outrageous to Pull Off a Satisfying Con

Leave a comment

CREDIT: Christian Black/Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures

Starring: Anne Hathaway, Rebel Wilson, Alex Sharp, Ingrid Oliver

Director: Chris Addison

Running Time: 94 Minutes

Rating: PG-13 for Crude Makeup Jobs and Exaggerated Appetites

Release Date: May 10, 2019

Successful movies about con artists pull cons on their audiences, and we thank them for it, because that is how they derive their entertainment value. So as someone on the hunt for entertainment value, it is my solemn duty to sadly report that The Hustle (a gender-flipped remake of 1988’s Dirty Rotten Scoundrels) struggles mightily to keep its viewers guessing. There are very few surprises along the way until the very end, and you’ll probably be able to surmise the big reveal if you’ve seen the original, or if you’re just savvy enough with the genre. So that leaves Anne Hathaway and Rebel Wilson to do what they can by bouncing off against each other, which they do by leaning way too hard into their typical character types. Let’s put it this way: this is a movie in which someone eats a French fry that’s been dipped in toilet water, and there’s no good narrative reason for it. If that tickles your funny bone, then good on you, but it’s not especially relevant to any con job.

The Hustle is Recommended If You Like: Sticking raunchy humor into a genre where it might not fit

Grade: 2 out of 5 Sob Stories