Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 10:58 am; Sunday at 12:30 pm; Monday at at Noon on "Arts Magazine"
Freeze Frame is a weekly show reviewing the latest movies from Hollywood’s best films to independent and arthouse movies.
FREEZE FRAME: “Keanu,” “Mother’s Day,” “Papa: Hemingway in Cuba,” “Louder Than Bombs” April 29, 2016 | Noon on "Arts Magazine"
Key & Peele’s first feature film together may be a one-joke affair…but it’s a very funny joke. Fans of the duo’s Comedy Central sketch show will love “Keanu,” a raunchy, irreverent satire…and so will many newcomers. The comics play nerdy cousins who pose as hardcore drug dealers in an effort to regain a stolen kitten. There’s enough violence, drugs and foul language in this gleefully goofy romp to easily earn an R-rating, but the vibe is so sweet natured, that it’s almost inoffensive. This “Keanu” is one cool cat.
FREEZE FRAME: “The Huntsman: Winter’s War,” “Miles Ahead,” “The Invitation,” “April and the Extraordinary World.” April 22, 2016 | Noon on "Arts Magazine"
Someone must have watched the Pixar/Disney films “Brave” and “Frozen” and then decided they should do a very gloomy amalgamation of those stories. The result is “The Huntsman: Winter’s War,” a sequel to 2012’s “Snow White and the Huntsman.” A great cast, terrific production values and impressive costumes almost save this murky and violent fairy tale…but it never achieves any real magic.
FREEZE FRAME: “The Boss,” “Midnight Special,” “Mr. Right” April 8, 2016 | Noon on "Arts Magazine"
After viewing Melissa McCarthy’s goofy comedy “The Boss,” you may be tempted to say, “You’re fired!” McCarthy plays a self-centered business tycoon who gets busted for insider trading and attempts a comeback after her jail stint. The language is foul and the humor is as crass as it is broad. McCarthy’s comic skill is the movie’s only saving grace. To say “The Boss” is a slight improvement over McCarthy’s “Tammy” is damning with faint praise.
FREEZE FRAME: “I Saw the Light,” ” Eye in the Sky” April 1, 2016 | Noon on "Arts Magazine"
Hank Williams was one of the greatest country music stars of all time. His short and complicated life could make a truly great movie. Sadly, the musical biopic “I Saw the Light,” ain’t it. British actor Tom Hiddleston stars as the singer/songwriter whose cheatin’ ways, abuse of booze and drugs and emotional instability torpedoed all of his relationships. Elizabeth Olsen plays his talentless wife who wanted him to make her a star. These gifted actors can’t overcome the script’s fractured and episodic nature that never allows it to achieve any dramatic momentum. The only time the movie comes to life is during the sporadic musical numbers, and none of those are performed in their entirety. “I Saw the Light” could easily have been called, “Lost in the Dark.”
FREEZE FRAME: “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice,” “My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2,” “Remember” March 25, 2016 | Noon on "Arts Magazine"
The much-heralded superhero smack down has finally arrived. “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” is action-packed and visually striking. Problem is, it’s just not much fun.
FREEZE FRAME: “The Divergent Series: Allegiant,” “Hello, My Name is Doris,” “The Bronze” March 18, 2016 | Noon on "Arts Magazine"
Shailene Woodley and a likable cast do their best with what they’ve been given, but “Allegiant” comes off as little more than “The Hunger Games-Lite.”
FREEZE FRAME: “10 Cloverfield Lane” March 11, 2016 | Noon on "Arts Magazine"
Back in 2008, producer J.J. Abrams surprised audiences with a nifty sci-fi opus called, cryptically, “Cloverfield.” It seemed to have arrived out of nowhere and when on to become a box office smash. Well, Abrams has yet another surprise up his sleeve. The terrific suspense thriller "10 Cloverfield Lane" is the unannounced follow-up.
FREEZE FRAME: “Zootopia,” “London Has Fallen,” “Whisky Tango Foxtrot” March 4, 2016 | Noon on "Arts Magazine"
With a name like “Zootopia,” you might expect a cute Disney animated flick about anthropomorphic animals. And while you’d be right, “Zootopia” is much, much more. It’s a wildly imaginative, beautifully animated comic crime thriller. “Zootopia” is a utopian city where predator and prey peacefully co-exist by suppressing their aggressive instincts. But when a bunny cop investigates a missing person’s case, she discovers the city’s dark underbelly. “Zootopia” slyly comments on humanity and the very the nature of civilization. There are a few scary moments that might disturb very young viewers, but this funny, thoroughly engaging movie is the year’s most pleasant cinematic surprise.
FREEZE FRAME: “Eddie the Eagle,” “Gods of Egypt,” “Triple Nine,” “Mustang” February 26, 2016 | Noon on "Arts Magazine"
Although you’ll feel shamelessly manipulated by the cheery sports flick “Eddie the Eagle,” you probably won’t mind too much. Taron Egerton and Hugh Jackman star in the true story of a somewhat mentally challenged British ski jumper and the drunken ski bum who trains him to compete in the 1988 Olympics. The movie so lightweight that it threatens to blow right off the screen, but the likable stars and good-natured spirit make it a painless time-waster.
FREEZE FRAME: “Risen,” “Race,” “The Lady in the Van” February 19, 2016 | Noon on "Arts Magazine"
Many recent faith-based films have suffered from low budgets and mediocre acting. Not so with “Risen,” a new take on the story of the resurrection of Christ.
Russ Simmons is an award-winning film critic whose work has been featured on television and in print for nearly two decades.