Black Dynamite

Comedy is a fickle film genre. It’s hard for a comedy to be timeless – what might be funny now is more likely than not to be considered gauche in just a few years. But sometimes, a comedy is able to achieve notoriety for being so funny, so absurd, that it can’t help but succeed and maintain its reputation as a gut-buster film. BLACK DYNAMITE is that kind of comedy.

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Tropic Thunder

TROPIC THUNDER is the kind of film that feels like a revelation on the first viewing. It’s so different and unique, and that makes the humor feel all the more edgy. But even though the premise and humor still hold up well, it loses a lot of its magic when revisited. The flaws are more readily apparent, and the cracks really start to show. TROPIC THUNDER is certainly a fun, and funny, film – but it’s far from perfect.

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Pitch Perfect 3

Billed as the ending to the trilogy, PITCH PERFECT 3 wraps up most of the storylines and offers a decent final chapter for the characters of this franchise. It also has, arguably, some of the best music of the series – and for a series that is all about a cappella, that’s a major plus. When the film is firing on all cylinders, it’s really quite fun – but there are also points where the film definitely falters. It’s a major step up from PITCH PERFECT 2, but it is still a pale imitation of the first film.

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Pitch Perfect 2

It’s hard to feel much of anything about PITCH PERFECT 2. The film feels very safe, a far cry from how daring the first film felt. It opens with the Barden Bellas a cappella group celebrated as a reigning national champion for the last three years – so, of course, they start this film with a fall from grace in a cringeworthy debacle on live television. The result is that the Bellas are banned from competing – but they strike a deal that if they win the a cappella world championship, they will be reinstated.

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The Big Sick

THE BIG SICK is a film that perfectly captures a moment in time. It’s a modern day love story, complete with casual dating, Uber rides, and weird roommates. There’s a real genuine feeling that permeates THE BIG SICK, a kind of fleeting hope that floats right at the edge of the screen. It’s a film that showcases love, but also the heartache and racism and aspirations that are so intertwined in society today.

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Pitch Perfect

It was about five minutes into PITCH PERFECT when I realized that this film was something special. The film opens at the national a cappella championship. The protagonists are quickly introduced as the all-female a cappella group, the Barden Bellas. The women are just a few moments into their song when, completely unexpectedly, the lead singer projectile vomits into the audience. It was completely unexpected, and also completely hilarious. I went into PITCH PERFECT expecting a fairly boilerplate film with a “you go, girl!” message about an all-female a cappella group – but what I got was an endearing, sidesplittingly funny film about a group of women just trying to figure out their place in the world.

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