Jesse Hassenger
Contributor, The A.V. Club. I also write fiction, edit textbooks, and help run, a pop culture blog and podcast. Star Wars prequels forever!
Friday 4:11PM

It does seem like Ridley should have been in bigger stuff by now, right? I guess it’s not that uncommon for Star Wars Stars to go a little more niche, at least in terms of the unequivocal lead. Hamill and Christiansen certainly make their livings, but Ford, McGregor, and Isaac all feel like they got bigger boosts. 

Friday 10:15AM

I’ll go further and say with certainty that Daisy Ridley has not been fired from any movies due to the $4 billion-grossing Star Wars sequels.

Tuesday 7:19PM

It’s sort of a mixed bag. It definitely lacks what his 90s movies have now: Namely that when you watch them, you’re like, wow, I know this is considered pretty cheesy/hacky stuff, but this looks so polished and almost classical compared to a lot of blockbuster-y action/genre pieces now! Predator 2 is not a Read more

6/04/21 4:59PM

Grisham was definitely a very big deal, but by this point, IIRC, five other Grisham adaptations had come out without the possessive poster credit, and I believe Coppola has spoken about wanting to credit novelists heavily when he adapts them. The Outsiders has on-screen text about the eighth grade teacher/class that Read more

6/04/21 4:51PM

Oh wow, you have firsthand experience with the ol’ review database scrub! I always have to roll my eyes at the, ah, CURATION that allowed Pitchfork to simply toss some of their funniest *and* some of their worst/snottiest reviews.

6/04/21 4:50PM

Raditude is a great comparison, because they’re both albums where I may not have listened to them front to back since 2009-2011, but I’ve listened to the better 50% of them COUNTLESS times and they both include some of my favorite songs from their respective artists. I looooove “If You’re Wondering If I Want You To” Read more

6/04/21 9:04AM

I think if one can extract a solid EP from the s/t, you can do the same with “You Should Know Me,” “Miss September,” “Satisfied,” “Oh, Bangladesh,” and “And He Slayed Her” off Funstyle, or “Table for One,” “Got My Own Thing,” “Leap of Innocence,” and “Wind and the Mountain” off Somebody’s Miracle. Basically, 2003-2010 Read more

6/03/21 3:40PM

I mean, whatever you feelings about the Fast & Furious series, if you watch, say, The Fast and the Furious and then Furious 7, you’re not gonna see two movies that are exactly the same... or even really recognizably the same series!

6/02/21 10:26AM

Well, not nothing — same characters and setting and tone — just a retelling of it. (Not necessarily worth venturing out into a movie theater for, but maybe worth a trip to the drive-in if you are so blessed with one nearby!)

6/01/21 8:16PM

The anachronisms are a clear creative choice. I don’t know that it works all that well, but contemporary-seeming girls in an 1890s environment doesn’t really hurt the show, which is pretty charming/tolerable kiddie stuff.

6/01/21 1:28PM

Yeah, and you know, at the time, IIRC, people sort of sniffed at it being UNREALISTICALLY P.C.!!! (Whereas when I caught up with it this year, my thought was the part where the army guy just eventually gives up and concedes that Spirit and his buddy have won was the particularly unrealistic moment.)

6/01/21 1:26PM

Service journalism! I really had to watch the movie before I had a full understanding of what they’re doing here. (And I still don’t really understand why.)

5/27/21 10:00AM

He’s in the trailer, so I wouldn’t call it a spoiler. It would be hard to spoil the “how,” even, because I’m not sure if I could explain it properly.

5/26/21 5:00PM

I don’t think it’s that De Niro doesn’t care so much as he seems to really like to work, whether to keep busy or for the money or whatever else, and there aren’t really *that* many parts for a 70something actor who seemingly wants make multiple movies each year. His old-man comedies are mostly terrible, but there are Read more

5/26/21 9:06AM

These aren’t criticisms so much as statements of facts. It is way too long, it’s all pretty obvious, and it’s not subtle. That’s fine! Movies don’t have to be subtle to be good. 

5/25/21 3:51PM

I would suggest that Pacino has delivered as many subpar performances in super-sleepy mode (Simone, in 2002; 88 Minutes, whenever that garbage was) as in overacting mode... maybe more, because at least the overacting is fun. Like De Niro, he’s had some late-career misses that people sometimes try crush into a defining Read more

5/25/21 3:49PM

Ah, but is it not Kevin Lomax (Keanu Reeves) who is the devil’s advocate in this case?! He’s not Pacino’s lawyer in the sense of his representative, but he is “his” in that he is employed by him!

5/25/21 3:46PM

Mia does kinda sorta weigh in on the whole Jakob thing, but it’s handled so clumsily, and poor Brewster has so many weird reaction shots, that it almost would have made more sense to write her out entirely, along with Brian. (Though good for J-Brew for getting paid.)

5/25/21 2:13PM

Yeah, I was honestly torn on the grade. I would say it’s a B- for fans (maybe a B for someone who’s REALLY in the tank for it), a C for skeptics, averaging out to a C+ for your garden variety movie-enjoyer who might not follow the SAGA but has seen at least a few of them and had fun. I’m a fan, but not thumbs up on Read more

5/25/21 2:10PM

I do really enjoy the notion that Brian is the stay-at-home dad in these situations now.