LESSON #1: YOU NEED TO BE WATCHING THE ORIGINAL FILMS DISTRIBUTED BY NETFLIX— This column has thrown bouquets at Netflix for having the resources and courage to become a real player in the film industry. Indiewire has a nice article trying to look at why Netflix’s great film acquisitions are still getting buried. The website followed that with a checklist of seven films worthy your time. Before summer officially splashes down, save some travel and concession bucks and seek a few Netflix films out.
LESSON #2: THAT SAID, STOP GIVING ADAM SANDLER A CAREER, EVEN ON NETFLIX— In some kind of bragging effort of PR, Netflix recently reported that their subscribers have watched 500 million hours of Adam Sandler films. Good lord, that’s a lot of trash. I know it’s subjective, but Adam Sandler is dead to me and I refuse to watch his repetitive and idiotic films. With “Sandy Wexler,” he’s one film into a five-film deal on Netflix. I have no idea how this man is still topical or relevant bringing out the same man-child comedy for twenty years now. He needs to go away. Stop giving him your money and your hours.
LESSON #3: THE “WORLD WAR Z” SEQUEL IS BENEATH DAVID FINCHER— The director of “Se7en,” “The Game,” “Fight Club,” “Panic Room,” “Zodiac,” “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo,” “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” and “Gone Girl” is better than a clunky and questionable blockbuster sequel. Kudos to Paramount Pictures for signing him (once the ink dries). That’s a hell of a get and upgrade, but somebody send Fincher (or his agent) better scripts and opportunities than bad zombies.
LESSON #4: HERE COMES THE REAL BEST CHANCE OF REDEMPTION FOR M. NIGHT SHYAMALAN— Personally, like Sandler, I’ve been on a boycott of Shyamalan’s films since “The Last Airbender.” I threw my hands up and was done. In my opinion, he’s like a mediocre basketball player. He’s got one great move to the basket: the twist ending. He’s amazing at that, but it’s all he has. The rest of his craft is repetitive and hack, if you ask me, even if people are calling the modest gains of “The Visit” and “Split” a comeback for the filmmaker. The true test will be “Glass,” the newly announced sequel merging “Split” with “Unbreakable.” If he can pull that off, then, and only then, can you call him redeemed and truly “back.”
DON SHANAHAN is a Chicago-based film critic writing on his website Every Movie Has a Lesson. He is also one of the founders and the current directors of the Chicago Independent Film Critics Circle. As an elementary educator by day, Don writes his movie reviews with life lessons in mind, from the serious to the farcical. As a contributor here on Feelin’ Film, he’s going to expand those lessons to current movie news and trends. Find “Every Movie Has a Lesson” on Facebook, Twitter, Medium, and Creators Media.