Maybe someday the world will appreciate The Bad Batch, but not today

C

Say what you want about The Bad Batch, but you can’t deny that it’s distinctive. As she did in her 2014 debut, A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night, director Ana Lily Amirpour builds an immersive world, this one with an offbeat look best described as “’90s trash raver,” full of colorful late 20th-century castoffs strewn…

Kumail Nanjiani spins his real love life into the charming romantic comedy of The Big Sick

B+

Interesting anecdotes don’t always make for interesting movies; your story may kill at parties, but that doesn’t mean it belongs on the big screen. In The Big Sick, stand-up comedian Kumail Nanjiani, who plays Dinesh on Silicon Valley, and Emily V. Gordon, the writer and former therapist he married, dramatize the…

My Journey Through French Cinema is a fond examination of movie minutiae

B

“At the Pathé Journal, I saw a guy next to me open a can of peas, heat it up, and eat it,” recalls Bertrand Tavernier with a survivor’s perverse pride as he describes the widely mythologized Paris movie houses of the 1950s in My Journey Through French Cinema, his smart and gregarious personal tour through the first…

At least the surreal religious allegory The Ornithologist is pretty to look at

C+

A nude swimmer, hunky like an underwear model, slits the surface of a pond at dawn. Next, we see him dressed, answering a phone call from a man (his boyfriend, maybe?), something about remembering to take his medication. He slips a canoe into a river, only to be caught in rapids and rescued by two Chinese hikers lost…

The game has begun in an exclusive trailer for retro chiller The Laplace’s Demon

Making its world premiere next month at the Fantasia Film Festival in Montreal, Italian director Giordano Giulivi’s new film The Laplace’s Demon is a haunted-house movie that’s comfortingly familiar and intriguingly odd at the same time. In the trailer for the film, premiering exclusively at The A.V. Club, we see a…

Miles Teller is a suffering soldier in this trailer for Thank You For Your Service

Lately, war movies have been less about how cool war is and more about how much war can fuck you up. This trailer for Thank You For Your Service makes it clear that it’s definitely the latter kind of war movie, with Miles Teller’s soldier returning from combat with what appears to be a significant case of PTSD. Rather…

Chicago, see Kumail Nanjiani and Emily Gordon present The Big Sick early and for free

Michael Showalter’s new film The Big Sick stars Kumail Nanjiani and Zoe Kazan, and it’s based on Nanjiani and his wife (and co-writer) Emily V. Gordon’s real-life love story. The A.V. Club’s A.A. Dowd calls it an “enormously winning comedy,” but the most exciting thing about The Big Sick is that it actually takes…

The doll is coming from inside the house in a new Annabelle: Creation trailer

With Universal’s Dark Universe floundering after the failure of The Mummy, the spooky expanded universe to watch is Warner Bros.’ ever-growing network of The Conjuring spin-offs. OG spin-off Annabelle told the origin story behind the possessed doll in the prologue to James Wan’s 2013 film; now, its prequel, Annabelle:…

Get ready for the Pitch Perfect 3 teaser with this teaser for a teaser

Generally, when a movie studio is trying to promote an upcoming film, it doesn’t make a big show of how much fun everybody had while making the movie. They’ll usually release what’s called a “trailer,” which is basically a series of clips from the movie without any context. Pitch Perfect 3, on the other hand, is a…

The Midnighters trailer promises dead bodies, potboiler tension—and an odd screenwriter

It’s a shame that the adult mystery-thriller genre has largely gone out of fashion in Hollywood, as it’s been the source of some of the best dramas the town has had to offer over the decades. Thankfully, the independent world is there to pick up the slack. With Midnighters, the new film about a plan to cover up a dead…

Let’s talk about how goddamn crazy the Cars universe is

Look, it wouldn’t take long to explain why Cars 3 is one of the weakest features ever released by the once-infallible animation wizards of Pixar. So after a few minutes of cataloguing the sequel’s generic storytelling choices, A.V. Club critics A.A. Dowd and Ignatiy Vishnevetsky turned to a more compelling topic of…

Quentin Tarantino makes his one true action movie, and it’s glorious

Quentin Tarantino loves action movies. Quentin Tarantino’s characters love action movies. The history of action cinema, especially the history of cheap ’70s exploitation action cinema, is threaded through Tarantino’s entire filmography. It’s there in the way his camera quotes old scenes, in the way his characters…