Is it better than the original? Not quite, although the distance between the two is a lot closer than anyone will care to admit.
Like James Bond, Tarzan on screen has never gone away, but unlike the dapper double-oh agent, his movie appearances rarely generate much notice
The fine performances by Paul Dano as a suicidal castaway and Daniel Radcliffe as the flatulent corpse who becomes his BFF (as opposed to his BFG) aren’t nearly enough compensation when matched against a screenplay that’s isn’t innovative as much as it’s simply idiotic
Unlike that 1982 blockbuster, The BFG isn’t emotionally gripping or excitingly staged. It’s just … nice.
While the original ID contained characters who kept us entertained, this picture adds characters — and their attendant actors — who are so devoid of personality, they barely register as living organisms.
As with Finding Nemo, the animation employed to capture the look of life under the sea is absolutely staggering, even if it no longer registers as the revolutionary feat it was 13 years ago. But Dory’s odyssey is never as involving as Nemo’s.
The spyjinks play like second-tier Mission: Impossible (though Amy Ryan is perfect as an ice-cold CIA boss), and director Rawson Marshall Thurber is no better than adequate in his staging of the action sequences. But as a comedy — and as a two-seater vehicle for a pair of highly charismatic actors — Central Intelligence is hard to resist.
It gets so much right that I’m willing to give it a generous thumbs-up in what’s proving to be a particularly dismal movie season (the films featuring the heroic Avengers and the nice guys excepted).
With its mix of humans, orcs, dwarfs and even a Golem, one would be forgiven for mistaking this movie for The Lord of the Rings: The Bootleg Edition.
There are a few modest chuckles sprinkled throughout Popstar, but few have sticking power, and certainly nothing compares to the knowing laughs offered in Christopher Guest’s string of celebrated mockumentaries.