Sing Street is all infectious joy

I may never recover from the muscle damage done by Sing Street. Seriously, smiling for over two hours straight at director John Carney’s latest ode to the power of one person and their guitar made kind of a Joker-rictus thing set in, as I’m still grinning ear to ear while I write this review.

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Would you actually watch Money Monster?

I can’t imagine a world in which I might actually watch “Money Monster.” Now, I already paid for the movie, I actually mean the financial-advice-program-within-a-movie (that old trope!) led by fictional financial expert Lee Gates (George Clooney).

Like, I get it, it’s supposed to be Jim Kramer’s “Mad Money” and that had a lot of viewers and a disproportionate amount of influence on folks and Jon Stewart had that sick-ass takedown of him.

But watching the program in its eponymous film, Money Monster, I was struck by undeniable fact that I wouldn’t be able to stand this show if it actually existed. There’s a second-hand embarrassment involved in seeing a man Clooney’s age (how ever age-defyingly youthful he’s actually supposed to be) dance to money-themed hip-hop and do bad morning zoo-level sound effect shtick.

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“Daredevil” shows marked improvement in its sophomore year

In television, just as in college, the sophomore slump is all too real. You have years to develop, write and create the first go-round without any pressure or worry. Your second (especially when it’s following up a successful first) is produced with a great deal more expectations and a great deal of less time.

This pressure leads to second seasons that change and escalate and add elements in an effort to strike the same lightning twice. There are successful improvements as often as there are are unsuccessful collapses. For every “Parks and Recreation”, there’s a “Heroes.”

Fortunately, “Daredevil” season 2 is a Parks and Recreation, on the whole creating a marked improvement from its first season by adding more wonderfully performed and nuanced characters and actually structuring the hell out of it, even as it’s still having problems with sticking the landing.

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Keanu proves that lightning can at least get close enough twice

The transition from small-screen sketch to big-screen comedy has defeated many of the great comedians. For every Wayne’s World or Blues Brothers, there’s a Superstar or an It’s Pat or A Night at the Roxbury or a Blues Brothers 2000. What tends to be hilarious at 3 minutes can often grow dull or irritating at 90 minutes.

Keanu, the first feature film from sketch comedy superstars Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele from the Comedy Central show Key & Peele, comes in with two advantages.

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Mission Statement

By: Brandon Wagner

For those of you who are reading this and don’t already know me, I’m Brandon Wagner. For the past year, I was the Film Critic and Opinion Editor for the Emory Wheel.

Yes, that is the paper that had all those Trump articles, if you’re coming to us from certain parts of the Internet.

However, graduation has come, and I’ve had to leave that venerable paper behind. But lest you think that brings an end to my film critic career, I’m here to keep the writing train a-rolling. While I’ll still be looking for a professional gig in the meantime, it’s gonna be a while before I get the primo review assignments, and I certainly don’t want to lose my chance to talk X-Men: Apocalypse or The Nice Guys or the countless other deeply fascinating blockbusters that will be coming our way over the next few months.

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