Philip Price's Profile - Rotten Tomatoes

Want-to-See Movies

Want-to-See TV

This user has no Want to See TV selections yet.

Rating History

Baby Driver
Baby Driver (2017)
25 days ago via Rotten Tomatoes

On the DVD for Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace there is an extended making-of feature titled "The Beginning" and in it George Lucas talked about his screenwriting process. At the tender age of twelve, when I first caught a glimpse of the film business via this featurette, I was not only enraptured in all that this world contained, but I was also struck by something the writer/director said concerning his action scenes. Lucas commented that rather than having a detailed description of the lightsaber battle he desired to create on screen it would simply say, "they fight," on the page. This always struck me as odd considering the amount of planning that would seemingly have to go into such an involved sequence. It was too easy. I could understood Lucas' idea of leaving the choreography and blocking to professionals who could better bring to life the style and aura of the battle he imagined, but to not even give an indication of what might have been in his brain always seemed a strange decision even if there would be countless meetings about it before the start of production. Even if it proved to be nothing more than a place to preserve those original ideas and remind himself, if no one else, of what inspired the sequence in the first place it would at least be that. This isn't to say such an approach doesn't work as I still believe that final lightsaber battle in The Phantom Menace to be the best the series has ever produced, but I bring this up to say that I'm pretty sure writer and director Edgar Wright didn't simply insert, "they drive," when he was penning the screenplay for his latest, Baby Driver. Rather, it would seem Wright, who is known for his ferocious energy and encouragement of innovative editing techniques, put on the paper every detail of what he wanted to happen in his action sequences as not only do they present a personality trait of the titular Baby as played by Ansel Elgort (The Fault in Our Stars), but they too are choreographed both in direction and motion. Motion meaning they not only hit the beats of an action sequence, but the beats of the soundtrack Wright has written the film to and integrated so intricately it would be impossible not to describe how exactly they went down if he wanted anyone else outside himself to understand his vision. This is all to say that Baby Driver is yet another unique and wholly original creative endeavor from a filmmaker who not only continues to push himself to come up with different ways to bring our similarly diverse world to the screen, but who captures an essence of cool in his work that we all aspire to have. Wright crafts the ideal out of situations that are not and Baby Driver is no exception to the standard he holds himself, and movies in general, to.

read the whole review at www.reviewsfromabed.com

47 Meters Down
25 days ago via Rotten Tomatoes
½

The best kinds of thrillers and horror films don't have to rely on the big bad antagonist that is chasing our heroes around for actual scares, but rather they build up the tension and expel the terror through the situations they create given the circumstances no doubt involve a big bad killer or evil spirit chasing our heroes. Over the past two years we've received two very different, but startlingly effective shark movies that utilize this technique really well and fortunately 47 Meters Down is one of those with last summer's The Shallows being the other. To go one step further, I'd say 47 Meters Down is the better of the two. At a lean eighty-nine minutes writer/director Johannes Roberts (The Other Side of the Door) doesn't waste time setting things up, getting into the action, and most importantly-he doesn't muffle that action or story with supplemental material. Instead, he executes his and the characters primary objective as successfully as one could hope in this day and age and he does so by keeping things simple. Within five minutes of the film beginning we know why our two lead characters, sisters Lisa (Mandy Moore) and Kate (Claire Holt), are vacationing together, we understand the dynamic that has existed between them in the past, and we quickly come to note their motivations for seeking out the thrills that inevitably lead them to their unfortunate predicament deep within the ocean. There is no messing around, there is hardly even any submerging us in the environment that is the coast of Spain because this isn't the environment Roberts wants us to get comfortable with-in fact, he doesn't want us to get comfortable at all. This brings us back around to the opening sentence which comes up only to say that the sharks are actually the least of Lisa and Kate's worries here. Both Roberts and co-writer Ernest Riera are well-versed in utilizing the natural horrors that come with being plunged nearly 155 feet into the ocean waters and it is in such a scenario that 47 Meters Down continues to build upon the number of hurdles our characters must face if there is any chance of survival; only reminding us of the sharks when we think we can't handle another thing hurting those chances of survival. In short, it's kind of brilliant.

read the whole review at www.reviewsfromabed.com

Rough Night
Rough Night (2017)
25 days ago via Rotten Tomatoes
½

I haven't seen Very Bad Things. I know that, especially after seeing Rough Night, I need to. That 1998 Peter Berg film more or less has the same premise as this new film with writer/director Lucia Aniello and writer/star Paul W. Downs (both of Broad City fame) switching up the genders and making it a male prostitute that gets killed at a bachelorette party rather than the other way around. I provide this context (and the context that it's been a while since I've seen Weekend at Bernie's) to say that my view of Rough Night might significantly alter after having seen that film, but as of right now what I can say about this female-centric comedy is that it is...okay. It's another one of those comedies that has otherwise well-behaved individuals behaving badly and thinking that the only way to have funny things happen is to have people act out on all different levels of crazy. I'm still waiting for modern comedies to catch up with half hour sitcoms and realize not all humor has to come from people going off the rails, but rather it can be funny and is often funnier when the laughs are elicited from the mundane and small, but honest truths of life. I'm not saying no feature comedy has ever tapped into this before, of course they have, but I am saying there's been a discouraging trend lately that deals in groups of friends and/or co-workers acting outrageous in the face of whatever the plot throws at them. I'm also not saying that such comedies can't be done well or in effective ways-I would still hang out with the guys from The Hangover movies just because their rapport was lightning in a bottle and I enjoyed both Neighbors films due to their twist on the idea-but when a trend seeps its way into the consciousness of funny and creative people and convinces them that the default way to make audiences laugh is by writing about people who act outside their comfort zone for nothing more than the sake of potential embarrassment then it's time to reassess what kind of comedy really works and Rough Night feels like a prime example of why it's indeed time to reassess. Rough Night is a movie about bad decisions that makes a few of its own while the overall mood the experience will undoubtedly leave you with is one of indifference; indifference in the sense that it will be quickly be considered irrelevant so when, twenty years down the road, this premise is inevitably rehashed once again movie pundits will likely still look to Very Bad Things as a point of comparison rather than Rough Night.

read the whole review at www.reviewsfromabed.com

Cars 3
Cars 3 (2017)
28 days ago via Rotten Tomatoes
½

I could not have been less excited about the prospect of a third Cars movie. Most would say it is fair to classify this now trilogy as the weakest link in the ever-growing Pixar brand, but I don't bring this up to quickly cut down the third installment in this franchise that has borne nothing more than extended or unnecessary narratives, but rather to commend it for stepping up its game with what is likely the last chapter largely featuring Lightning McQueen if not the beginning of a new generation of Cars films as Cars 3 actively attempts to correct much of what has dragged these films down to sub-par Pixar levels from the beginning. In 2006, an idea such as a world filled with talking vehicles and a story that paid homage to the racing world, where it'd been, and where it might be going was an inspired enough one especially considering the combination of Disney and Pixar had yet to fail to meet if not surpass expectations. There seemed so much energy and so much enthusiasm for this first endeavor and while, having re-watched that first film recently, Cars is certainly a fine enough experience it didn't transcend the genre of animated movies in the way many of its predecessors had. Rather, Cars was more along the lines of an animated movie made strictly for the kiddos rather than one that had the ability to both appeal to the children in the crowd as well as emotionally resonate with their parents. That isn't to say it didn't try, but it is in the same kind of middle area where the purpose is present yet the payoff doesn't totally work that we find Cars 3. Many will agree Cars 2 was a total misstep and deviated from what at least made the first film charming and even if the Cars movies didn't make them buttloads of cash via merchandising it would seem Pixar might be intent on course correcting for the sake of artistic credibility as Cars 3 makes a genuine attempt to steer this franchise back into the arms of what inspired it in the first place-the good ole open road. While we are eleven years down the road from the first Cars in the future the dynamic will be rather jarring as the original Cars and Cars 3 more or less bookend the career of McQueen; chronicling both how he learned to be the racer he always aspired to be as well as helping him cope with the passing of time, the passing of the baton, and understanding there might be more to life than crossing the finish line first.

read the whole review at www.reviewsfromabed.com

Transformers: The Last Knight
33 days ago via Rotten Tomatoes
½

Twenty minutes into the fifth Michael Bay directed Transformers film, this one subtitled The Last Knight, Optimus Prime comes face to face with a robot God named Quintessa (as voiced by Gemma Chan) if that gives one any indication as to how insane these movies have truly become. No? Not good enough? How about the fact Anthony Hopkins' character (or the fact Anthony Hopkins is in a Transformers movie) has a Transformer butler that the film acknowledges is more or less a rip-off of C-3PO? Not far enough? Let's go ahead and make the robot butler a sociopath of sorts, shall we? Point being, there is no seeming cohesion between any parts of the many layers that make up The Last Knight as well as most of its predecessors. Personally, I walk into a new Transformers film with the expectation of being bombarded by sound, image, and story and am more or less pleased if I can walk away saying I understood the main point of the plot and was, at the very least, entertained. Of course, without such expectations one could view these things as complete messes, as mind-numbing fun, or fall somewhere in between where it's easy to recognize the idiocy of the picture, but acknowledge the merit in big, colorful, summer blockbuster filmmaking. Many will make jokes, but Bay is one of the more unique directors working today by virtue of the fact he consistently operates on such a scale that it's almost inconceivable he could craft something that wasn't inherently bloated; every aspect of his process and his product has to be big and this latest endeavor is no different. While Age of Extinction felt like something of a breaking point in terms of the director going so far into his wheelhouse that he couldn't possibly possess any more tricks we are still here three years later and Bay, along with returning cast members Mark Wahlberg, Josh Duhamel, John Turturro, and Stanley Tucci, have somehow managed to at least match if not best their previous Bayhem effort. The Last Knight is scattered, plot-heavy, overly complicated, and generally non-sensical to the point of genuine hilarity, but there is still a craft to it all and the fact Bay can somehow orchestrate these massive characters, set-pieces, and story into something resembling a movie while at the same time maintaining a visual aesthetic that is bar none one of the best you'll see on the big screen today is truly impressive and deserves at least a little bit of credit.

read the whole review at www.reviewsfromabed.com