Author: Bill Watters

Bill Watters is a child of the late 70s- he walked into a theater to watch Star Wars, and emerged to become a lifelong fan of cinema and television. Spending nearly a decade as a projectionist, he fell into the Silicon Valley dot-com boom and became a codemonkey for a range of game companies. These days he's a frequent speaker, moderator, and panelist at pop-culture events and conventions, as well as a prolific film and television critic and genre news writer. He is also a member critic of both the San Francisco Film Critics Circle and the Broadcast Film Critics Association. In addition to his writing, he is also a photojournalist and can be found on Getty Images.

“Spider-Man: No Way Home” has managed to pull off an amazing feat. Not only does it wind up being another solid entry into Marvel Studios’ Cinematic Universe pantheon, it winds up giving the existing films more depth. “No Way Home” will be best enjoyed by going into it knowing as little as possible about it (meaning keep away from Twitter as best you can until you have a chance to see the film). As we go through this review, we will not go any deeper into details of the film beyond what might be surmised from the trailer. So before…

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Dean Stockwell, the Golden Globe-winning actor and nominee of nearly every other kind of award that exists in television and cinema, has passed away. Known the widest for his role as Admiral Al Calavicci in the long-running science fiction series, “Quantum Leap,” his career spanned more than 70 years and more than 200 acting credits and was also renowned for his roles from “Battlestar Galactica,” “Blue Velvet,” “Dune” (David Lynch’s version), and “Married to the Mob.” Sources reporting to Variety said that Stockwell passed away peacefully in his sleep at home on Sunday morning from natural causes. He was 85.…

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The very first rated-R movie I ever saw was John Carpenter’s “Halloween” during its original run. It scared the crap out of me- I was 8- but it did start me down a road of having a deep fondness for horror as a genre. Fast forward 11 more films and 43 years, and we get “Halloween Kills.” And one thing is certain, it will not be the vehicle by which anyone will feel fondness for anything. “Halloween Kills” is a jumbled mess of nonsense, void of any particular story thread, motivation, or interesting characters. 2018’s back to basics “Halloween,” with…

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Whenever a film is helmed by Ridley Scott, there’s no question about production quality and performances, it always comes down to how the script plays out on screen. With his latest film “The Last Duel,” if nothing else, it will be remembered for giving Matt Damon and Adam Driver yet more amazing character performances. It’s also BY FAR the single best example of a 14th century duel between armored knights ever committed to film. Adam Driver as Jacques LeGris and Matt Damon as Jean de Carrouges in 20th Century Studios’ THE LAST DUEL. Photo by Patrick Redmond. © 2021 20th…

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“F9: The Fast Saga” continues the not-infrequent trend of paint-by-numbers summer blockbusters. Their studios throw out any pretense of substance, or even moderately competent storytelling. Nay, any storytelling craft isn’t thrown out the window, it’s more like it is being dragged into a back alley and stabbed in the throat by a broken beer bottle. Sure, the “Fast & Furious” franchise has never been particularly deep on character development, with most of the character journey’s summarized by Dominic Toretto (played by Vin Diesel) constantly muttering about “family.” It did at one point have at least had some kind of coherent…

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“The Suicide Squad” finally gives Warner Bros. and DC a much needed improvement over its prior multi-character outings. While they have had a number of solo films that have been really good (and in cases arguably great) “Joker,” “Man of Steel,” and “Wonder Woman” all come strongly to mind. Unfortunately there has only been one decent muti-character film with “Birds of Prey.” Okay, so the Snyder Cut of “Justice League” is on a par, but it still loses points for not being the version that was actually released to theaters. THE SUICIDE SQUAD (L-r) JOEL KINNAMAN as Colonel Rich Flag,…

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Disney’s latest foray into turning amusement park rides into cinematic outings, “Jungle Cruise,” lands itself squarely in the middle of the pack. Not as good as “Pirates of the Caribbean,” but far better than “Haunted Mansion,” most of its saving graces can be placed squarely on the “we’re all having a fun time” smile and wink from Captain Frank, played by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. The film has the composite vibes of your favorite experience with the ad-libbing and terrible joke-telling riverboat captains from the titular Disney ride, the punchy humor of “The Mummy” (the good one with Brendan Frasier),…

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