Kevin A. Ranson

Kevin A. Ranson
Tomatometer-approved critic
Biography:
What his grammar school teachers called ?underachieving,? Kevin A. Ranson called ?being bored to tears? and spent every possible second making up projects to fuel his unattended creativity. After discovering nothing interesting at college other than movies and role-playing games, Kevin escaped from West ?By God? Virginia to travel the world for six years on the US Navy?s dime while compiling ideas for books, games, and screenplays. Now from his home page at ThinkingSkull.com, he owns/manages MovieCrypt.com as a certified (or certifiable) film critic endorsed by the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS.org). He also works as a freelance game writer/designer when not working on his indie role-playing game at KindlingMoon.com. Kevin currently resides in Jacksonville, Florida.
Favorites:
Of all time, thus far, and in no particular order:
Publications: MovieCrypt.com
Critics' Group: Online Film Critics Society
Location: Jacksonville, Florida
Official Websites: http://moviecrypt.com

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
3/4 54% The Dead Don't Die (2019) ... a manufactured cult classic destined to play in the background of horror conventions until the inevitable zombie apocalypse. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 17, 2019
4/4 57% Aladdin (2019) ... more Indian influence to craft a Sinbad-like fantasy Arabia, the live-action remake is intent upon entertaining all audiences while stepping on as few sandaled toes as possible. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 14, 2019
4/4 69% Ghost Light (2018) ... combines lighthearted character and competitive nature with throwing caution into the wind to delight, amuse, and effectively disturb. Doth not dis thine Scottish Play! - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 14, 2019
0/4 23% Dark Phoenix (2019) ... a disservice to a great cast and X-fans everywhere to undermine all that has come before only to be upstaged by two farcical Deadpool movies that provide a far better representation. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 9, 2019
4/4 97% Booksmart (2019) ... the perfect storm of direction, writing, and casting... sending a positive message that everything is going to be all right... and it won't require a superhero to save the day. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 5, 2019
3/4 40% Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019) ... a monster disaster film intended for the biggest screens packed with a cheering audience watching a string of money shots framed like a murals in a museum. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 3, 2019
3/4 56% Ma (2019) ... explores the scope of childhood trauma and keeps viewers guessing whether they should root for or fear an antagonist no longer constrained by right or wrong. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 1, 2019
3/4 57% Brightburn (2019) Brightburn commits to its nihilism, embracing it like a liquefying corpse. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted May 27, 2019
3/4 89% John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum (2019) The genius of John Wick is perfectly straddling the line between the fantastic and the ridiculous, and Parabellum is no exception. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted May 27, 2019
4/4 100% The Dead Center (2018) This is psychological horror at its best, when the eventual bloodletting pales in comparison to a Lovecraftian realization that one is well and truly doomed. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted May 27, 2019
4/4 94% Avengers: Endgame (2019) Endgame orchestrates defeat, hope, struggle, courage, triumph, and denouement in perfect balance... as all things should be. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 24, 2019
2/4 30% The Curse of La Llorona (2019) ... looks and acts too much like The Nun... and a poorer imitation at that. Learning actual background on our featured monster would have been far more preferred, but what we got was a decent cast wasted on a schlocky atmospheric jump-scare boo-fest. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 20, 2019
3/4 17% Hellboy (2019) ... a clear effort was made to showcase all the things that Hellboy's world could become as a franchise... Many may see this as merely another overblown spectacle... others will see it as the guilty pleasure it was intended to be. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 13, 2019
4/4 90% Shazam! (2019) Resisting the power of a consequence-free existence to embrace what's important in life is a noble goal, and tapping into that is the film's true magic... a welcome addition to the New DCEU; if only they'd found that Magic 8-Ball sooner. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 8, 2019
3/4 57% Pet Sematary (2019) ... script departures are enough to argue a new edition and provide Jeté Laurence with an amazing opportunity as Ellie 2.0. While not as visceral as at could have been, the case is made for this improved remake... - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 6, 2019
1/4 45% Captive State (2019) ... too much story to tell with no affordable way to tell it... what we ended up with was a low-budget Battlefield Earth. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 3, 2019
2/4 91% How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (2019) ... none of it appeared necessary other than a need to say goodbye; the dragons and their champions certainly earned a better conclusion than that. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 2, 2019
4/4 94% Us (2019) ... a sinister symphony of symbolism... everything is on the screen and well-acted, but thinking back to where it all began after it's been seen is a true joy. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 23, 2019
4/4 78% Captain Marvel (2019) Imagine The Long Kiss Goodnight being retold around a campfire by The Guardians of the Galaxy... (a) heartfelt action-oriented bundle of Marvel joy... the best version of Captain Marvel for the screen. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 6, 2019
3/4 85% The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part (2019) Tiffany Haddish's Queen Watevra Wa'Nabi is definitely a stand-out... (but) a reliance on either repeating the same bits or failing to impress beyond them doesn't set the sequel significantly apart. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 27, 2019
4/4 69% Happy Death Day 2U (2019) ... Rothe proves her performance as Tree was no fluke, elevating a clever concept into not only a better sequel but that rare follow-up that improves the original film instead of sinking it. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 16, 2019
4/4 60% Alita: Battle Angel (2019) Stylized, vibrant, and impactful, the first great escape 2019 has arrived... the world-building high adventure fortified with underdog-championing hopefulness in a bright manga wrapper you've been yearning for. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 14, 2019
3/4 No Score Yet Scooby-Doo! and the Curse of the 13th Ghost (2019) LaMarche does a fair job with (Vincent) Price's cadence and penchant for making all things into ghoulish puns... a possible fascination with this incarnation of Daphne... a fun return to yesteryear by pretending it was only yesterday. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 9, 2019
3/4 44% The Prodigy (2019) ... suggests more than it shows, and the possibilities are fascinating... this "who's-doing-it" thriller pokes at the brains of viewers while stabbing at their eyeballs. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 9, 2019
3/4 89% The Kid Who Would Be King (2019) As a modern take on Arthurian legend for the 'tween set, (Kid) happily pulls very few punches. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 29, 2019
3/4 19% Serenity (2019) ... an existential thriller built around a significant M. Night-worthy twist that presents an interesting dilemma. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 29, 2019
4/4 37% Glass (2019) None of this is a happy accident; it's a confident creator's act of will and a worthy conclusion... the unironically self-aware meta comic book film... those who want to believe will be well rewarded. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 19, 2019
4/4 79% Mary Poppins Returns (2018) ... nothing less than fun, adventurous, and enchanting... feels like a Mary Poppins story should... dismiss her at your own peril. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 14, 2019
4/4 93% The Favourite (2018) ... a triple-threat of Baroque fatales flirting with the highest stakes imaginable. For those with the squirm-worthy stomach for decadent aristocracy and boundless ambition, its deliciously wicked. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 10, 2019
3/4 93% Bumblebee (2018) ... works best when the story sticks to the buddy-film trappings... makes you wish this is where they had actually started instead. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 9, 2019
3/4 65% Aquaman (2018) A fish-folk tale making a spectacle of itself... mindless and muddled with glimmers of grandeur. In truth, Aquaman's appeal is strictly tied to Momoa's enthusiasm: it's infectiously sexy. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 2, 2019
1/4 93% First Reformed (2018) ... making viewers feel as numb inside as the main character... feels like its missing a necessary point-of-view, leaving all else as an exercise in futility... plus a somewhat-cool one-sheet poster. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 19, 2018
4/4 97% Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018) It's ambitious, it's incredible, and it works damnably well: a true living on-screen comic book. Even a complete ending here still didn't feel like enough -- more, please. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 18, 2018
2/4 27% Mortal Engines (2018) ... the tepid main character of Hester (is) played underwhelmingly by newcomer Hera Hilmar, a far cry from the Katniss Everdeens or Tris Priors in this genre... as meaningful as your average Michael Bay Transformers sequel: big, loud, pretty, and hollow. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 15, 2018
3/4 19% The Possession of Hannah Grace (2018) What sets this genre tale apart from its peers is a penchant for not going in obvious directions; even the ending hints more at possibility than simply giving away the farm. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 10, 2018
2/4 37% Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald (2018) Over-plotted and under-edited, even die-hard Harry Potter fans may find themselves left behind as the story lumbers forward like a Whomping Willow... and an overwhelming desire to cast "Riddikulus" at the theater screen. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 26, 2018
3/4 89% Ralph Breaks the Internet (2018) In spite of a near-desperate need to entertain viewers no matter what corner or crevice they peer into, Disney's savvy enough to apply the Pixar formula to ensure tugging a heart-string or two. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 22, 2018
4/4 78% Green Book (2018) If a positive guarantee seems a bit of a cheat for a dramatic film tackling a tough subject, it's a welcome bit of fluff in today's political climate: humanity has done and can continue to do better. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 21, 2018
3/4 80% Mid90s (2018) For all their faults and myriad opportunities for adults to judge them, viewers also glimpse their history, potential, and worth... especially when no one else bothers. A dissection of unsupervised impending masculinity. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 19, 2018
4/4 75% Bad Times at the El Royale (2018) ... a very tight drama, similar to lock-box horror films where no one escapes until the movie ends and the survivors are tallied... It needs no prequel, no sequel, and is near-perfect as is. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 7, 2018
1/4 66% Suspiria (2018) ... the payoff gleefully self-flagellates itself into exhaustive pointlessness. Had it been shorter, a subplot less, or both these things, it would have again become what inspired it - a clear case of never needing to have bothered in the first place. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 6, 2018
1/4 80% Intensive Care (2018) ... more like a demo reel than an actual film... look what (Tara Macken) can do! ... driven to see how many stunts they can work in first and how any of it makes any sense second... - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 5, 2018
4/4 61% Bohemian Rhapsody (2018) A breathtaking performance... the eerie and exemplary portrayal by Malik ... an inspiration for accepting family (biological or tribal) regardless of its flaws. Freddie is missed and was loved, but the show must go on. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 28, 2018
4/4 79% Halloween (2018) ... elevates the Final Girl trope into a true till-it-happens-to-you art form. No science fiction, no supernatural forces, and no holds barred. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 22, 2018
4/4 89% A Star Is Born (2018) ... the distraction-free bubble focuses the story on the key players and their emotional motivations to achieve maximum impact... (but) the real villain of this story is human fragility. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 11, 2018
2/4 66% The House with a Clock in Its Walls (2018) ... a neat idea with some interesting visuals that flounders in execution. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 8, 2018
3/4 29% Venom (2018) What sets (it) apart and keeps it on the rails is Hardy's commitment to the relatable streetwise reporter wielding a weapon that thinks for itself, that and keeping the story simple enough to enjoy it for what it is. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 7, 2018
3/4 41% Hell Fest (2018) ... with the coolest Halloween mazes you've never seen, characters are kept on their toes as much as the target audience wishes they were in there with them. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 1, 2018
3/4 32% The Predator (2018) ... delivers what it sets out to do even if the marketing failed to make that clear... works as long as you keep one idea in mind: humans make wild assumptions when it comes to their actual importance in anything. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 17, 2018
1/4 No Score Yet Ouija House (2018) There's no rhyme nor reason for the characters to speak and/or act other than to further the plot... the conclusion makes even less sense than the uninspired setup, satisfying no one and making viewers question their life choices. - MovieCrypt.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 9, 2018