SXSW 2021 Review: Violet

Year: 2021Runtime: 90 minutesDirector: Justine BatemanWriter: Justine BatemanCast: Olivia Munn, Justin Theroux, Luke Bracey, Dennis Boutsikaris, Erica Ash, Todd Stashwick, Bonnie Bedelia By Joan Amenn Mental health is often depicted in film as a debilitating disease, perhaps because it makes for more dramatic story telling. “Violet” (2021) takes a different look at anxiety and how it may be affecting those closest to us while we … Continue reading SXSW 2021 Review: Violet

Retrospective Review: The Lego Ninjago Movie

“The Lego Ninjago Movie” (2017) is funny and bright with a strong message at the core. But if it’s a representative of a universal playtime fantasy we have some serious issues on our hands. Playtime doen’t really include women and girls.

Lloyd (Dave Franco) is a Lego teenager who happens to be the son of evil Lord Garmadon (Justin Theroux). He’s also secretly a Ninjago warrior, along with friends Nya, Zane, Jay, Cole and Kai. Together they must battle to defeat evil Lord Garmadon and find their inner peace (inner Lego piece, get it!) on the way. Together they defeat the Ultimate Weapon – a cat called Meowthra – and Garmadon’s evil plans.

This is a fun film. Funny, colourful, playful, and self-aware. But it falls into the trap of being aimed at all children but focuses on male characters to the notable exclusion of female ones. Continue reading Retrospective Review: The Lego Ninjago Movie