Keanu Reeves is again suitably taciturn as the former assassin who, just when he thought he was out, gets pulled back in, and the criminal world created for the first picture — a landscape in which there exists neutral-zone hotels in which no blood may be spilled – retains its unique appeal.
The major liabilities of the first picture have been neatly carried over into this latest endeavor, beginning with the fact that the general prudishness permeating throughout American society makes it impossible for Hollywood to produce an honest, provocative or explicit film about S-E-X and have it receive an R rating.
Robert De Niro is in fine form here, particularly when he’s taking no prisoners in his stand-up routines.
With Silence, Scorsese again fully turns his attention to the spiritual side, and the result is a movie that’s both disturbing and deeply committed.
The hits and misses, from A (Arrival) to Z (Zoolander No. 2)
WAS 2016 a particularly desultory year for cinema, or did I just miss most of the year’s crowning achievements? True, Martin Scorsese’s Silence wasn’t screened in time for the majority of critics not residing in NYC or LA, so that might have made a slight difference (it goes wide in January).
Based on Margot Lee Shetterly’s nonfiction book, Hidden Figures places Katherine Johnson (Taraji P. Henson) at the forefront, relating how she was tapped for her skills as a mathematician to help NASA’s Space Task Group (headed by Kevin Costner’s tough but fair director) crunch the numbers needed to successfully send astronaut John Glenn (winningly played by Glen Powell) into space and have him safely return to Earth.
Reprising their roles from the 2010 Broadway revival, Denzel Washington and Viola Davis are nothing short of remarkable as Troy and Rose Maxson, living in 1950s Pittsburgh and dealing with issues involving family, infidelity and dashed dreams.