“Jaws 2”

8.1

Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water…

The first one was just too good… they had to make a second one, right?

In one of Hollywood’s better sequels, Universal made the accidentally genius decision to switch to an action oriented director, who took this film in a different enough direction from the first that it actually works really well. The helicopter scene is a thing of beauty, cheesy as it may be. Chief Brody comes back for another round with his finned foe. The action gets cranked up to an 11, and you see A LOT of the shark in this one. A well executed follow-up to a legend, that stands the test of time.

“Jaws”

9.9

All time favorite. As close to a perfect movie as they get in my career as a cinephile.

All time great score, all time perfect cast. Paradigm shifting cinematic craft exhibited by all involved converged by happy accident to create one of the most storied summer blockbusters of all time. What should have been a cheesy, forgettable tale of a goofy mechanical shark turned out to be a juggernaut that would launch many legendary careers and inspire generations to come.

With just two notes and a shark that couldn’t swim… history was made.

“Prom Night”

6.1

Jamie Lee Curtis fights of a serial killer in a mask. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? *cough* Halloween *cough* Lori Strode has to again save a bunch of clueless teenagers from a killer on the loose on the night of a community wide holiday/event.

Heavy on the disco. Pretty typical Shudder slasher flick. Cheesy, lots of blood and screams.

“Ready Player One”

8.4

I’ll admit, I rate this one higher than most. Call me a sucker for Spielberg’s signature wonder set to an Alan Silvestri score. I’ve loved this movie since the first time being blown away seeing it in IMAX. Not only is it one of the most beautifully rendered CGI films I’ve ever seen, but my heart was warmed by the attention to detail as every frame was filled with film references that had me going “No way! That’s ____!!! From ____!!!” almost the entire runtime. Strong story, strong casting, and no shortage of action. Adding to the score, was a soundtrack overflowing with deep cuts you couldn’t help but groove to.

The “Back to the Future” nod in the score gave me chills! It was almost as subtle as the DeLorean and Doc Brown cameo in “A Million Ways to Die in the West.” It’s the little things…

“Memento”

7.3

I’m going to allow this one on the grounds of a maestro honing his skills. An unpolished Nolan time bender. Left me more confused than anything. With an ending that gave me strong “Shutter Island” vibes. Ignorance is bliss, am I right? Solid premise, but a bit clunky in its execution. Little too much jumping for my taste. Took away from the big reveal moments that I felt lost at times, as a viewer.