Archives for posts with tag: Mel Gibson

My annual movie ranking. Criteria: films widely released to theaters/streaming/DVD in 2022 that I watched in 2022 that weren’t Bruce Willis movies. See below for Bruce. Links to reviews where I had time to insert them.

Top Gun: Maverick – perfectly fulfills demands of sequeldom

Last Looks – evokes Elmore Leonard’s Hollywood

Elvis – caught in narrative trap, can’t walk out

The Batman – familiar hero weighed down by history

Everything Everywhere All at Once – Tiger Mom learns to kill with kindness

Nope – another Jordan Peele mind bomb

Downton Abbey: A New Era – beautiful, romantic, period-costumed junk food

The Lost City – fun rip-off of “Raiders,” “Stone”

The Black Phone – ’70s style overcomes horror substance

The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent – ironically mediocre self-parody of mediocrity

Father Stu – Mark Wahlberg’s suprisingly moving ne’er-do-well

Bandit – refreshingly fun Canadian caper flick

Where the Crawdads Sing – upwardly mobile product of a low-ceiling genre

Last Survivors – surprising May-December mediocrity

Weird: The Al Yankovic Story – flawed but funny mock biopic

Don’t Worry Darling – Rat Pack rat race doesn’t end well

Bullet Train – actioner bogs down under its own weightiness

Delia’s Gone – bleak yet compelling mystery

Death on the Nile – bluesy but downbeat whodunit

Moonfall – alien armageddon flick jettisons common sense

Uncharted – Indiana Jones-style video game mediocrity

The 355 – run-of-the-(fe)mill spy flick

The Bad Guys – comfortably unoriginal animation mediocrity

Secret Headquarters – kid-driven superhero mediocrity

Ambulance – antiquated action mediocrity

Morbius – (medical) textbook comic-book mediocrity

Marry Me – harmless, rom-com mediocrity

A Tale of Two Guns – bounty-hunting western travels worn-out trail

Black Site – oddly engrossing, action-espionage mediocrity

Dog – interestingly dark man’s-best-friend story

Scream – big-budget, mediocre fan fiction

Supercool – teen comedy mediocrity

Alone Together – muted rom-com mediocrity

Panama – slightly compelling Drug War mediocrity

Redeeming Love – mediocre Christian porn

The Northman – Viking revenge mediocrity

Emily the Criminal – millennial moral dilemma mediocrity

Lightyear – rocketman prequel fizzles

Memory – geezer action mediocrity

Dead for a Dollar – Western showdown mediocrity

Blacklight – more geezer action mediocrity

The Contractor – wounded warrior mediocrity

Agent Game – mediocre action TV pilot

Shattered – “Misery” redux as gory mediocrity

Last Seen Alive – an incomprehensively ridiculous ending

Gone in the Night – below-average highbrow horror

Poker Face – goes all-in on incoherence

The Devil You Know – sub-mediocre family drama

Confession – commits sin of boredom

Assailant – annoying married couple vs. annoyinger psychopath

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Here is a ranking of Bruce Willis films I saw in 2022, regardless of year released. Given his diminished state, and his films’ interchangeable banality, they require their own category.

Apex – rich murderers vs. murderous ex-cop – interestingly derivative

Gasoline Alley – hookers and cons vs. dirty cops – sloppy

Cosmic Sin – discredited general vs. warrior aliens – unfortunately ponderous

Deadlock – vengeful vet vs. hungover vet – preposterously compelling

Paradise City – bounty hunting ex-cop vs. John Travolta (?) – mildly interesting

Vendetta – crime boss vs. Marine dad – messy gun porn

Trauma Center – crooked cops vs. old cop vs. waitress – tedious

Wrong Place – widower ex-cop vs. dimwitted crook – boring

A Day to Die – corrupt chief vs. triple-crossing mercenaries, gangsters – incoherent

American Siege – alcoholic sheriff vs. hostage takers vs. militia – nonsensical

Fortress: Sniper’s Eye – wounded mercenary vs. vengeful protege – gratuitous drivel

Every film I watch that’s set in the 1980s feels like a TV movie. Maybe the ’80s never happened. Maybe I just watched it on TV. Josh Duhamel reeks of TV movie – in a good way – making him perfect for the maddeningly cocky, charismatic namesake of “Bandit” (2022). Based on an actual series of 1980s bank heists in Canada, the plot construction is as simple as the robberies are elaborate, making it small yet fun. Mel Gibson plays a loan shark with rock-hard fists – and even he’s Canada nice. Elisha Cuthbert is a composite character of every 1980s sitcom girlfriend.

Mediocre action flicks are like a salad bar. They all have that big bowl of iceberg (guns), but after that, it’s interchangeable fixins. In “Agent Game” (2022), the filmmakers added olives (black sites), tomatoes (expendable operators), shredded cheddar (CIA conspiracies), pickled beets (Mel Gibson) and of course, ranch dressing (double-crosses). Plot twists are croutons. Normally, it would be a semi-interesting way to waste 90 minutes when there’s nothing else on TV, or fine Saturday-nap-inducing fare. Except for the insult. (Spoiler Alert!) The film concludes like a feature-length pilot for a 1990s TV series. Seriously? I was watching a commercial? C’mon!