Mary Poppins Returns
Mission: Impossible - Fallout
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All Critics (19)
| Top Critics (7)
| Fresh (12)
| Rotten (7)
The conceit is old-fashioned: hey, people falling in love long-distance! But the modern renovation confers a mild obnoxiousness.
Like the film itself, Kakkar and Pastides are lively, adorable and thoroughly winning.
As easy as it is to like Hank and Asha, it's impossible to look past the many screenwriting and filmmaking flaws of the film about them.
Though not very ambitious, this winsome, whisper-thin tale shimmers along with the charming urge to connect and reveal yourself that links its two correspondents.
This two-hander doesn't feature much more than its leads speechifying to their cameras, a challenging basis for visual storytelling.
As if it were necessary, here's a film that proves that placing two characters in completely separate locations marks a shaky premise.
It's heartwarming and very lovable in a way a lot of romantic comedies can only dream of being.
The post-millennium indie film equivalent of an epistolary short story, the movie is not just a video-letter conversation but a calling card for its debuting co-directors, who demostrate a knack for crowd-pleasing instincts even on a micro-budget.
Though the film's leads are engaging and appealing, the contrived plot device of communicating solely through video becomes tiresome after the novelty wears away.
A very imaginative take on modern romance and the yearning of lonely and isolated twentysomethings for an intimate relationship.
Even if the Skype romance turns out to be the wave of the future, however, Hank And Asha, [...] proves that such tales are only as interesting as the people who inhabit them.
As the film is focused solely through the lens of the titular characters' cameras, this limits the exploration of the story's worldview outside of Hank and Asha's perspective.
Hank and Asha's video penpal friendship starts off enchanting as hell, but the sweet yet staid gimmick eventually commits storytelling suicide. The entire movie is told in back and forth video diaries, and at no point does the narrative structure break into real time or real exigence. By the middle-end, the previously low-stakes conflict blows up into go-to cultural misunderstanding and an unsatisfying, open-ended ending.
Mahira Kakkar is doe-eyed and beguiling as Asha, an Indian film student studying in Prague, and frankly, her letters are livelier and more interesting than Hank's. Andrew Pastides is fine as Hank, but both actor and character rub me the wrong way. Perhaps it's the glassy blue eyes and the self-deprecating mien that projects a Nice Guy sensitivity but actually belies the garden-variety narcissist underneath who prides himself on being such a Nice Guy. I just had to groan and laugh at that vociferous letter in which he bellows at Asha to reject her arranged marriage because he understands her more than her fiancée does (presumably). Really? What does he truly understand about her or her culture?
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