It can be hard to separate movies from the hype machine. Take Morbius , for instance: the film was originally slated for release almost two years ago, before a global pandemic caused not one, not two, but SIX release delays. Now, many months after those first teaser trailers and who knows how many rewrites and reshoots, the full movie has opened in theaters to lackluster critical reviews and poor word of mouth. But you know what? I like Morbius, and here's why. Jared Leto stars as Michael Morbius, a reclusive doctor with a disease that has left him nearly crippled, but a mind that is sharp and eager to help the helpless. As a last ditch effort to find a cure for his illness, he resorts to an experimental and dangerous procedure involving the DNA of vampire bats. Because this is a comic book movie, he's granted bat-like powers that include sonar, gliding ability, and super strength. But gifts come with a price, and for Morbius, the cost is an insatiable thirst for human blood.
Every generation gets a Batman. The Caped Crusader is incredibly flexible, able to morph into whatever the times need him to be. Sometimes that's a noir-stained avenger, other times a colorful camp icon. In the 1990s, his films became synonymous with blockbuster bloat. Under the creative hand of Christopher Nolan, he became a soldier in the war against terror and a hero for the post-9/11 era. Now, a decade after Nolan's landmark trilogy and its unprecedented realism, The Dark Knight returns once again in Matt Reeves' The Batman, the most political film in the lifespan of this character. What is The Batman about? Pain and anger. That's what drives this Batman (Robert Pattinson). That's also what drives The Riddler (Paul Dano), as well as Selina Kyle (Zoe Kravitz), who has lost someone dear to her. Batman is so consumed with it that the black costume that he garbs himself in is not to strike fear into the hearts of criminals, but rather serves as a manifestation of
Robert Altman's 1973 Neo Noir film The Long Goodbye is hard to pin down. It's a detective movie that takes place 15 years after the classic film noir cycle had ended, depicting a character out of time, sleepwalking through a world that is not his own. The plot is opaque, and there are details to the story that aren't made known to the audience, even when the final credits have rolled. It's both a commentary on the Golden Age of Hollywood and a criticism of artifice. Is anything real? Elliott Gould (2001's Ocean's Eleven ) stars as Philip Marlowe, a private detective first created on the page by hardboiled author Raymond Chandler and embodied in film and television by Humphrey Bogart ( The Big Sleep ), Dick Powell ( Murder, My Sweet ), Robert Montgomery ( Lady in the Lake ), Robert Mitchum ( Farewell My Lovely ), James Garner, and Powers Booth (TV's Marlowe and Philip Marlowe: Private Eye , respectively). In the capable hands of Gould, Marlowe goes from con