'Puzzle' is Well Made, but a Few Pieces are Missing

Based on the film Rompecabezas, Puzzle is one of those little-known independent films that sneaks into theaters with little to no fanfare, although the fact that it is being promoted “from the producer of Little Miss Sunshine” should help it get noticed somewhat. Puzzle is a quiet, little film about a woman who discovers that jigsaw puzzles are the key to changing her life. While the subject matter doesn’t sound all that exciting, the film really isn’t about puzzles but instead about one finding their voice, or so it appears. It’s also a message film that has its own agenda expecting the audience to agree with the choices of the main character and applaud her “brave” behavior. Frankly, it just feels manipulative.

Directed by Marc Turtletaub, Puzzle’s most impactful scene comes within the first few minutes. We see Agnes (Kelly MacDonald) cleaning up the house and they decorating it for a birthday party. Then we see her serving appetizers while being ignored by the guests. …


1. The Meg - $44,500,000
2. Mission: Impossible - Fallout - $20,000,000
3. Christopher Robin - $12,430,000
4. Slender Man - $11,325,000
5. BlacKkKlansman - $10,800,000
6. The Spy Who Dumped Me - $6,600,000
7. Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again - $5,820,000
8. The Equalizer 2 - $5,500,000
9. Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation - $5,110,000
10. Ant-Man and the Wasp - $4,048,000
(From comScore, Inc.)

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom

Steven Spielberg knows how create a mystery. For the 1975 movie trailer for Jaws, the shark is never fully shown. This created a fear of the unknown. Audiences weren’t really sure what they were going to see when then went to the theater. However, for each Jaws sequel that followed (and not directed by Spielberg), Universal took away that mystery by showing plenty of shots of the man-eating beast. Sure, fans of the original already knew what type of movie they were bracing to see, but the mystery was gone. Fast forward to 1993 to the first trailer for Jurassic Park. Spielberg did it again. The dinos are only partially seen and the familiar feeling of dread came back. Since then, the executives at Universal can’t help themselves from showing more action scenes in hopes of raising excitement, but sometimes, they just show too much. That is the case with Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. Read More>>>

Ocean's 8
Gosh it’s great to see Sandra Bullock again in the movies. Most of us fell in love with her when she appeared as a fairly no-name actress appearing alongside Keanu Reeves in 1994’s Speed. Her wit and comedic timing was well noted and has served her well. However, we haven’t seen Bullock in quite a while. Her last two appearances were in 2015 when she starred in Our Brand is Crisis (a film I did not see) and voiced the villain Scarlet Overkill in the animated Minions. She is such a talented actress and her onscreen presence is overdue. She leads Ocean’s 8, which is a spin-off of the former Oceans movies (11, 12 and 13) that starred George Clooney and friends. Here, Bullock plays Clooney’s sister, Debbie Ocean who proves that the heist businesses is in the family blood. Clooney appears in this film (but in photo only) and Reuben (Elliott Gould), one of her brother’s band of merry men, appears briefly, but these two are the only real connection to the former movies. This is Debbie’s/Sandra’s show. Read More>>>

Incredibles 2
While we’ve been waiting 14 years to see what has happened to the Parr family at the end of The Incredibles, the sequel, Incredibles 2, picks up immediately after the events of the 2004 movie. If you remember, Dash had just completed his first track meet and no-longer-shy Violet was asked out on a date from a fellow schoolmate. But the “normal” family life is short-lived as the Underminer (voiced by John Ratzenberger) wreaks havoc on the town and it’s back to work for the Parrs. Mr. and Mrs. Incredible (Craig T. Nelson and Holly Hunter) task Violet (Sarah Vowell) and Dash (Huck Milner) with babysitting Jack-Jack (Eli Fucile) while the husband and wife go to work. Read More>>>

Christopher Robin
The new Disney film shouldn’t be confused with last fall’s Goodbye Christopher Robin which starred Domhnall Gleesaon and Margo Robbie. That film was about the real Christopher Robin and his father, A.A. Milne, who wrote the original stories. The new film, which stars Ewan McGregor and Hayley Atwell, is about the fictional Christopher Robin, who of course was a character in his father’s stories. Both movies are excellent with similar messages for adults, but they are both very different too. Taking a cue from the earlier animated tales, this story is told from the pages of a storybook and begins with a young Christopher Robin (Orton O’Brien) leaving the Hundred Acre Wood to attend boarding school. Pooh and friends have put together a going away party for the boy and he promises them that he’ll never forget them. Read More>>>

The Meg
Though beautifully shot in New Zealand, The Meg takes place somewhere near the seas of China. The film opens with a rescue diver, Jonas Taylor (Jason Statham), attempting to save a group of scientists in an underwater attack. While he is able to save some, he wasn’t able to save them all. After the incident, one of the men he saved, Dr. Heller (Robert Taylor), accused Jonas of acting irrationally. Fast forward five years later, Taylor is called to save a small crew of international undersea observation program, whose submersible has been attacked by some unknown creature. Not only is this situation similar to the earlier rescue mission, but Dr. Heller is there to object to using Taylor as the rescuer and one of the scientist needing rescuing is Taylor’s ex-wife, Lori (Jessica McNamee). Read More>>>

Mission Impossible: Fallout
Though there is little time for character development in Fallout, the film does manage to develop more of Tom Cruise’s Ethan Hunt persona. The film opens with a flashback of Ethan’s wedding day to Julia (Michelle Monaghan) oh so long ago. But the beautiful memory becomes a literal nightmare for Hunt and he begins to wonder how his involvement with the IMF team may have ruined her life, and others, forever. To make matters worse, during his next mission, the CIA is taking control forcing Ethan to team up with CIA assassin August Walker (Henry Cavill) to keep him in check. Walker is young, impossibly good looking (even with a mustache) and doesn’t appreciate the bells and whistles of the IMF that Ethan and company rely upon. He prefers to crack heads to get the needed answers when necessary. Read More>>>

Despite what you might think from watching the trailers, Skyscraper has more in common with Diehard than it does with The Towering Inferno. Yes, there is a burning building and people need to be rescued, but that’s about it for the comparisons to the former. It survives on the star power of its star, Dwayne Johnson. No matter how silly or outlandish a film is, you just can’t help but like it if it stars Mr. Johnson. And Skyscraper even shows a glimmer of the depth of Johnson’s potential as an actor. Read More >>>

33, The  /  45 Years  /  90 Minutes in Heaven  /  99 Homes  / 

A  A Good Day to Die Hard  /  A Hundred Foot Journey  /  Admission  /  Adrift  /  Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day  /  Alice Through the Looking Glass  / Amazing Spider-Man, The  /  Armstrong Lie, The  /  Avengers, The  /  Avengers: Age of Ultron, The  /  Avengers: Infinity War

Batkid Begins  /  Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders  /  Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice  /  Battleship  /  Beauty and the Beast  /  Beatriz at Dinner  /  Believe Me  /  Ben-Hur  /  Big Hero 6  /  Big Year, The  Black Nativity  /  Black or White  /  Black Panther  /  Blue Like Jazz  /  Book Thief, The  /  Bourne Legacy, The  /  Boss Baby, The   /  Boxtrolls, The  /  Boyhood  /  Brave  /  Brickumentary  /  Bully  /  Butter

C  Captain America: Civil War  /  Captain America: Winter Soldier, The  /  Captain Underpants: The First Epic movie  / Captive  /  Cars 3  /  Christmas Eve  /  Christmas With a Capital C  /  Christopher Robin  /  Chronicle  /  Cinderella  /  Code Black  /  Cold in July  /  Confessions of a Prodigal Son  /  Coco  /  Cold November  /  Commuter, The  /  Courageous  /  Crimson Peak  / 

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes  /  Death of Stalin, The  /  Deliver Us From Evil  /  Descendants, The  /  Despicable Me 3  /  Details, The  /  Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days  Divergent  /    Dolphin Tale  /  Dunkirk

Ender's Game  /  Exodus  /  Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close  /

Fight Church  /  Finding Dory  /  Finest Hours, The  /  Florence Foster Jenkins  /  The Founder  /  FrankenweenieFrozen  /

Geostorm  /  Gifted  /  Gimme Shelter  /  Godzilla  /  Golden Shoes  /  Gone Girl  /  Good Dinosaur, The  Goodbye Christopher Robin  /  Gravity  /  Greatest Showman, The /  Guardians of the Galaxy  /  Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2  /  Guest, The  /  Guilt Trip, The 

H Hacksaw Ridge  / Hail Caesar  Heart of the Sea  /  Heaven is Real  /  Hell or High Water  /  Hello. My Name is Doris  /  Hero, The  /  Holy Rollers  /  Hotel Transylvania  /  Hotel Transylvania 2  /  How to Train Your Dragon 2  /  Hunger Games, The  /  Hunger Games: Catching Fire, The  /  Hunt for the Wilderpeople 

Identical, The  /  In Darkness  /  Incredibles 2  /  Inside Out  /  Insurgent  /  Internship, TheIntersteller  /  Is Genesis History?  /

Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit  / Jeff Who Lives at Home  /  Jobs  /  John Carter  /  Johnny English Reborn  /  Journey 2: The Mysterious Island  /  Joyful Noise  /  Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle  /  Jungle Book, The  / Jurassic Park 3D  /  Jurassic World  /  Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom  /  Justice League

K  Kelly and Cal  /  Kidnap

L  LEGO Batman Movie   /   LEGO Movie, The  /  Les Miserables  /  Life, Animated  /  Little Hope Was Arson  /  Little Rascals  /  Lorax, The  /

Machine Gun Preacher  /  Maleficent  / Man on a Ledge  /  Man of Steel  /  Man Who Invented Christmas, The  /  Mansome  /  Marriage Retreat  /  McFarland, USA  /  Me Again  /  Meg, The  Mighty Macs, The  /  Million Dollar Arm  /  Minions  /  Miracles From Heaven  /  Mirror Mirror  /  Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol  /  Mission: Impossible: Rogue Nation  /  Mission Impossible: Fallout  /  Monuments Men  /  Moms Night Out  /  Monsters University  / Mother India  /  Mother's Day  /  Mummy, The  /  Muppets, The  /  Muppets Most Wanted  /  Murder on the Orient Express

Need for Speed  /  Night at the Museum 3  /  Now You See Me  /  Now You See Me 2

Ocean's 8  /  October Baby  /  Oculus  /  Odd Life of Timothy Green  /  Only the Brave  /  Oz, The Great and Powerful  

P  Paranorman  /  Passengers  /  Patterns of Evidence: Exodus  /  Peanuts Movie, The  /  People Like Us  /  Pete's Dragon  /  Pirates! Band of Misfits, The  Pixels  /  Pope Francis: A Man of His Word  /  Post, The  /  Prisoners  /  Pursuit of Happyness  /  Puss in Boots  /

Q  Quartet  /  Queen of Katwe  /

Raven, The  /  Real Steel  /  RED 2  /  Resurrection of Gavin Stone, The  /  Rise of the Guardians  /  Robocop  /  Rock of Ages /  Rogue One: A Star Wars Story  /

S  Salmon Fishing in the Yemen  /  Saving Mr. Banks  /  Saving Winston  /  Secret Life of Pets, The  /  Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows  /  Shot  /  Skyscraper  /  Spectre  /  Spider-Man 2  /  Spy  /  Stanford Prison Experiment, The  /  Star Trek Into Darkness  /  Star Wars: The Force Awakens  /  Star Wars: The Last Jedi  /  Step Up Revolution  /  Stonehearst Asylum  /  Suicide Squad

Tag  /  Taken 2  /  Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles  /  Thor: Ragnarok  /  Tower Heist  /  Transcendence  /  Trouble With the Curve



W  War for the Planet of the Apes  /  What to Expect When You Are Expecting  /  What We Do In The Shadows  /  When the Game Stands Tall  /  Why Him?  /  Wonder Woman  /  Woman in Black  /  Woodlawn  /   Words, The  /  Wreck-It Ralph 


Avengers: Infinity War
Available on August 14
Marvel’s Studios 19th film picks up shortly after Captain America: Civil War. Though healing and forgiveness has taken place between the heroes, some of them still feel a little bruised since the aftermath. But they come together again, some for the first time, to battle Thanos who aims of retrieving all the six Infinity Stones so that he can rule the world not to mention the universe. You may remember that Thanos is the “step father” of Gamora and Nebula from the Guardians of the Galaxy crew. He sends his minions to earth to retrieve the remaining stones and it becomes pretty clear that all hands are needed on deck. Read my review>>>

God's Not Dead: A Light in the Darkness
Available on August 21

Pastor Dave responds to the unimaginable tragedy of having his church, located on the grounds of the local university, burned down.

Available on August on August 28Adrift actually begins in the middle of the story with Tami Oldham (Shailene Woodley) bobbing back and forth inside a large sailboat full of water and debris. She is wearing a raincoat but the weather outside is sunny and calm. How long has she been knocked out? As she awakes and gets her bearings, Tami suddenly panics and calls out for someone named Richard. Struggling to make it to the top of the boat, Tami can’t find Richard anywhere and fears the worst. Read my review>>>

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