Dragon Ball Super: Broly (2018)

The first fifteen minutes of this film burst with so much uncharacteristic story for this series that it’s somewhat electrifying. It zips along with purpose and story to tell beyond incessant power-level-raising and clobbering. The opening prologue very naturally and organically finds the seeds of good storytelling in old lore to retell a subjugation and…

Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection ‘F’ (2015)

Where “Battle of Gods” sidelined lifeless stakes-raising and power level nonsense, “Resurrection F” doubles down on it, resurrecting (literally!) elements and characters from the old show and essentially just redoing them – but bigger! I’m struggling to say anything about the film because it’s such a story-less exercise. Characters change their colour schemes. A lot.…

Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods (2013)

The issue in these sorts of franchised based on power levels and combat is there comes a point where stakes basically become irrelevant because characters become too powerful. Characters like Superman have enough trouble with their awesome power short-circuiting how many narratives can be told with them, and they have their own hills to climb…

Alita: Battle Angel (2019)

An kinetic flurry of assured action setpieces, hokey cyberpunk manga worldbuilding, and charming accelerated character growth by way of Rose Salazar’s strikingly well-handled growth from big-eyed robo-daughter to purposeful avenger. Still with big eyes though. Which work oddly well, accentuating the cyborg character’s outsider nature as well as Salazar’s very deliberate performance. The world feels…

The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part (2019)

It lacks the surprise factor of the first film – the novelty, the striking glitziness of the CGI lego, the run-on laughs on how the whole concept operated – and doesn’t handle its story and themes with as deft a hand, but the ultimate statement of the film is more nuanced and interesting than the…