The Batman (4.5*)
Glass Onion (4*)
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (2.5*)
There are three thriller films this year. And I highly recommend two of them.
The Batman was a pleasant surprise, as, like a lot of people, I’m getting tired of the super-hero plot mess. But this one was genuinely different painting the superhero in more human colors. He doesn’t save the world, just a bunch of orphans – kids like who he was at one time. There is a ticking time bomb here and it’s worth it to hear it out!
Glass Onion is the sequel to the terrific film Knives Out and brings Daniel Craig back as the goofy but brilliant detective with the Louisiana accent. Like in the first film, the mystery is exposed early, but the fun is in how they got there. The characters in this one are tech titans rather than crotchety family members out of a Clue game, but are still having more fun making this film than should be allowed. If you haven’t seen it, you should.
Unfortunately, this year’s Black Panther: Wakanda Forever isn’t really worth your time. Yes there are some wonderful costumes and hair styling, and some of the visual effects are fun. But the story has to establish a whole bunch of new characters, presumably for future entries in the saga as well as serve as a memorial to Chadwick Boseman and establish a new persona for the Black Panther. Just a bit too much I’m afraid to pack into a successful movie.
There were also three movies in this genre last year, and I liked all of them. The Tragedy of Macbeth (4.5*) is a modernized update on the Shakespearean drama. I loved the film, but wasn’t quite sure why it was listed as a Thriller. Nightmare Alley (4*) is bizarre and keeps you on the edge of your seat as you wind your way through the psychological drama. And, of course, the latest entry in the James Bond canon No Time to Die (3.5*) does everything you expect from a Bond film.
So there are five thriller films to pick from. Don’t fall off the edge of your seat!