movie reviews

The Way Back review at Awful Announcing

Releasing a basketball movie in March, when so much real drama and joy is on TV with college hoops, seemed kind of risky. But The Way Back isn’t entirely a basketball movie, which may surprise some viewers.

Sports movies — portraying sports in pop culture and media — fit solidly into Awful Announcing’s beat. So I reviewed the movie for the site. Here’s an excerpt:

Some viewers might prefer a more predictable, more conventional sports movie with an uplifting message. But director Gavin O’Connor and Ben Affleck know life isn’t that simple and a tidy resolution doesn’t often make for a good story. What feels more gratifying is that viewers can determine how this story ends. Maybe it goes exactly as you would’ve predicted. But maybe not. Being trusted as an audience to deal with the many possibilities at hand makes it worth seeing. This isn’t the movie you think it is.

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Podcast

Amusement Park Podcast 024: The Batman, Reign of the Supermen, The Punisher – and bonus thoughts

reign_supermen

On the latest Amusement Park Podcast, we react to news of the next Batman movie being set for a Summer 2021 release and a younger Bruce Wayne meaning Ben Affleck will no longer play the role. We also review the entire Season 2 of The Punisher after delving into the first six episodes last week. And we review the latest DC animated movie, Reign of the Supermen.

Previously, I’ve just posted the same blurb and link to the podcast that you can find at the Amusement Park Podcast website. But I’d like to try and offer a bit more here at The Casselbloggy, especially for those who take the time to click over and read. I think it could be a good opportunity to discuss topics that didn’t make the cut or stuff that I intended to include but forgot to mention while we were recording.

That’s where I’d like to go this week because it’s bugging me that I forgot to talk about Punisher star Jon Bernthal and his voice for Frank Castle. I’ve seen Bernthal in several other movies and TV shows like The Walking Dead, Sicario, Show Me a Hero and The Ghost Writer, but had forgotten what his actual speaking voice sounds like. So when I watched some talk show clips of him, it was jolting to me how different he sounded from Frank Castle.

I know; it’s called acting! But it’s still impressive to me (and far more effective than, say, Christian Bale’s Batman voice) and a reminder of how deeply Bernthal lost himself in that role. It’s a damn shame that he probably won’t play The Punisher anymore.

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