Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017)

Martin McDonagh’s acclaimed drama is something of an oddity these days: An A-list, character-driven drama featuring an unwavering, deliberately unglamorous central role for a middle-aged woman. However, beyond the acting, not much about it works particularly well. There are far too many supporting characters that pop in and out of the narrative, functioning more like…

Family Guy (Season 15) (2016-17)

One of the tamest, most tepid seasons of this formerly edgy and confrontational show. There’s nothing exactly wrong with it: It’s got the same wit as before (albeit a little diluted) and strong voice work from a cast of professionals, and it’s never too afraid to go for broke with its storylines to keep things…

Community (Season 2) (2010-11)

Just as excellent and rewatchable as the first season, Dan Harmon’s unique sitcom demonstrates a remarkably keen understanding of its characters and, simultaneously, its own audience. The characters continue to grow and learn from each other here, while the performers already have a stranglehold on their characters and their relationships to each other. Despite these…

The Golden Girls (Season 4) (1988-89)

There’s never been anything quite like “The Golden Girls” and there may never be again. Yet another excellent season for the immortal classic, here we find the Girls having adventures that go beyond the more domestic scenery they’ve had so far but anywhere they go, it feels like home. All four lead performances are pitch…

Faerie Tale Theatre: “Rapunzel” (1983)

Easily the best episode of Shelley Duvall’s beloved 1980s children’s program I’ve seen so far, “Rapunzel” shows significant storytelling and narrative growth since the first two episodes, as charming as those two were. Here, the episode is blessed with Roddy McDowall’s smooth narration not to mention the funny, charming writing he’s given, while the trio…

The Gracefield Incident (2017)

Despite an incredible concept and some genuinely terrifying moments, not a single minute of this alien-invasion, found footage entry ever feels sincere. There’s a noticeable disinterest in story and character development, with an overabundance of expository dialogue that draws attention to its director’s inexperience with feature length filmmaking. In fact, the emphasis on special effects…

Amityville: The Awakening (2017)

I approached this one with some trepidation, knowing well how long it’s been since there’s been a decent Amityville movie, not to mention that it was originally schedlued for release in 2014, but this one turned into a pleasant surprise with genuine scares. Mind you, it’s not without its flaws, like some editing and pacing…

10 Cloverfield Lane (2016)

A decidedly unique and unusual follow-up to 2008’s “Cloverfield,” this thriller manages to keep the audience guessing about its secrets right up to the thunderous climax. Mary Elizabeth Winstead proves once again that she’s an underused and underappreciated talent, tearing into her role with gusto and emerging as a genre standout, while John Goodman plays…

Why Him? (2016)

“Why Him” is a strange experience. It’s impossible to ignore the cache that both Bryan Cranston and James Franco bring to an otherwise unremarkable mainstream comedy, and while it’s obvious that Franco is having a great time playing the foul-mouthed clown to Cranston’s straight man, he’s pretty much the only spark of life the movie…

Community (Season 1) (2009-10)

Incredibly well-written and acted from the very first episode, Dan Harmon’s unique and challenging sitcom was unlike anything that’s ever come before – even in the era of peak television. Joel McHale leads a first-rate cast that challenges convention wisdom through its diversity and fully fleshed characters, wearing their flaws on their sleeves and extending…

Mermaids (1990)

Cher’s return to the big screen following her Best Actress Oscar for “Moonstruck” is the perfect choice for the multi-talented grand dame of pop: Her central role is tailor-made for her charm, talent and screen presence, and shares warm chemistry with supporting players Bob Hoskins, Winona Ryder and a young Christina Ricci (in her film…

Faerie Tale Theatre: “Rumplestiltskin” (1982)

Following in the footsteps of the first episode, “Rumplestiltskin” has the same charmingly ornate sets and costumes that defined the show’s visual identity, not to mention the same light, silly sense of humor and semi-meta narrative winks that delighted my generation. Here, host and creator Shelley Duvall does triple duty as leading lady, bringing her…