Sunday Short Reviews

Every Sunday, Gill delves into his archive of over 800 movie reviews and randomly selects three for your enjoyment! Here are this week’s…

Space Station 76
Here is a film that doesn’t know what it wants to be. On the surface, it appears to be a send-up of 1970’s space operas with a slightly comedic bent, but the humour is rarely well-realized, and aside from the odd off-handed chuckle, I probably wouldn’t classify this as a comedy at all. The movie follows the soap-operatic relationships of the crew of Space Station 76. There’s the alcoholic and closeted captain who is pining for his former lover, the botanist who unintentionally invokes the ire of a blonde-headed bimbo mom on the station, the good-natured but doofy guy with a robot hand who just wants to be a good dad…but none of these plotlines seem to go anywhere fast. In the end, Space Station 76 plays like a lesser version of Mad Men on a space station, but even that pitch is better than the final product. It’s not a bad movie, but it’s pretty boring, and watching it, I could see a lot of wasted potential.
2.5 out of 5

The Final Member
This bizarre documentary from Drafthouse Films follows the curator of the world’s only penis museum in Iceland and his quest to complete his collection by adding a human penis to his exhibit. At first it seems like the curator will get his wish when an Icelandic adventurer, now in his 90’s, volunteers to donate his penis to the museum. But things start to get crazy when a middle-aged American rancher offers to donate his own penis…before he dies. With the museum curator also suffering from increasing health problems, The Final Member becomes a race against time. Will a human penis be added to the museum before the curator dies? Will the penis belong to an Icelander or an American? Documentaries don’t come much weirder than this movie, but it’s a strange and enjoyable tale that not only gives us a look at some people with very strange hobbies and interests, but also touches upon an interesting question: why is the penis so taboo?
3.5 out of 5

The Monuments Men
The Monuments Men is the definition of a talent bomb, because while the movie is packed to the gills with amazing actors, it is one of the most bland, toothless war films you’re ever likely to see. The cast consists of George Clooney, Matt Damon, Bill Murray, John Goodman, Bob Balaban, and Cate Blanchett, and yet I can’t name a single one of their characters or even describe a trait of any of their personalities. There’s no real antagonist, every caper is accomplished easily, George Clooney’s character spends every scene he’s in just listing facts, and there is no tension to speak of whatsoever. It feels like Clooney is trying to please all audiences in a “Golden Age of Cinema” kind of way, but the result is that he fails to please anybody. Whoever cut the trailer for this movie deserves an award, because compared to the film it advertises, it is a work of art. The Monuments Men, however, will be instantly forgotten the moment the credits roll.
2 out of 5

See you next Sunday for three more thrilling short reviews!

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