A look back at my movie reviewing years

Grant Dillard

Staff writer


Starting next semester, The Murray State News will no longer feature movie reviews in both the paper and on the features website. Having provided several film and television reviews since 2017, I thought I would look back on my many written works; going over what I considered to be the best and worst films that I’ve seen and done a review for, as well as a few other additions.

Avengers: Endgame (2019) BEST

I know this film just came out last weekend, but I still think this has to be the best film that I’ve seen in recent memory. Everything from the story, the characters, the memorable moments, and the overall sense of resolution left me incredibly satisfied. One of the best movie-going experiences I’ve had for sure. Of course, with any film like this, it’s extremely time consuming and difficult to write an over 500 word review while also remaining spoiler-free.

The 15/17 to Paris (2018) WORST

Going from the best movie I’ve reviewed to the worst, “The 15/17 to Paris” was an abysmal biopic film that was based on a true story revolving around three friends who thwarted a terrorist attack. This Clint Eastwood-directed film showcased the three friends playing themselves in the story, which turned out to be a mistake given how they aren’t exactly professional actors. Worst of all was the film’s awful pacing, which focused for an absurd amount of time on the friends vacationing in Italy, almost like Eastwood and the cast wanted to take a nice trip and film around it so that they’d get paid. This was, hands down, the worst movie I ever reviewed.

Home Again (2017) FUNNIEST REVIEW

On a lighter subject, my review for “Home Again,” an average romantic comedy starring Reese Witherspoon, is what I consider to be the most humorous film review I’ve done. Generic romantic comedies are typically not my thing; so if I’m having to see one for the sake of review purposes, I should at least have fun with it: and that I did. Where I feel I stuck the landing in terms of humor was my criticism of the main romantic interest, Pico Alexander, and the bland performance he gives; comparing him to such things as a concrete block and a cardboard box. I still get a bit of a chuckle every time I look back on this review.

Five Feet Apart (2019) BEST WRITTEN REVIEW

Another recent review, this one will certainly stick with me for a while. Honestly, the first two acts of this “terminal teenage romance” (a phrase I coined) are fairly enjoyable, thanks to the chemistry of the two main actors, Cole Sprouse and Hayley Lu Richardson. But it’s the film’s absurd, ridiculous and rage-inducing third act that turned an otherwise charming film into a source of absolute frustration and anger. Being absolutely baffled by the idiocy that was unfolding onscreen, I knew that I would have to dedicate a huge paragraph to going over what happened. Overall, it’s my description of this scenario that makes what I consider to be my best-written review in terms of legitimate criticism.