RHODYLIFE

At the Movies

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Joyce and I have reviewed an average of 3½ movies a week since the late ’70s.

At its peak, there were five Showcase Cinemas to choose from. Garden City, Cranston, Cinerama and a handful of local cinemas offered first- and second-run movies at reasonable prices. The Avon had the best in foreign and independent movies.

And for a few special years, we were able to watch nature and travel films on a giant screen at Providence Place Mall.

Times are changing. You can blame it on the pandemic, television, the product, the economy, lifestyle changes, or Hollywood.

The fact is that fewer people are going to the movies today.

Warwick Showcase opened two new movies this weekend – the third of the “Conjuring” series, which we wouldn’t waste our time sitting through, and a cartoon feature that is equivalent to a Saturday morning TV cartoon. The other screens are filled with holdovers.

Even the Avon is having trouble getting good films, relying recently on second-run movies.

Is it any wonder that movie lovers are turning to Netflix, Disney, HBO Max and other streaming services for their entertainment?

A month of Netflix is less expensive than a single movie ticket, and you can watch it in the comfort of your own home.

While we still enjoy watching a movie, like the upcoming “In The Heights,” on the big screen, we will be making fewer trips to the few remaining movie houses.

On Netflix

SWEET TOOTH

****

(Fantasy drama)

It has been 10 years since The Great Crumble has wiped out much of humanity.

Mysterious young hybrids are appearing everywhere.

Are they responsible for the deaths of the humans?

Bands of armed men comb the earth capturing and killing these creatures, which are part human with animal features.

If I had read this far in a review, I would have skipped this fascinating Netflix series, but I got hooked by the two main characters and watched all eight episodes.

Christian Convery, a charming young actor, plays Gus, a 10-year-old hybrid with deer antlers and ears who lives in the woods of abandoned Yellowstone Park with his loving father.

When tragedy strikes, he is saved by Big Man (Nonso Anozie), a rugged, huge former football player – and a man with a dark past – who reluctantly helps him try to find his mother in Colorado.

They have many adventures and narrow escapes from bad men who are out to capture and kill them.

There are a couple of connecting subplots, including a doctor who is searching for a cure to the virus and a woman who runs a preserve in an old zoo for young hybrids.

Even though the plot sounds a bit far-reaching, I got hooked on the characters and the moral behind the fantasy.

“Sweet Tooth” raises the question, what is a family? It also examines prejudice, blame, freedom, fear and caring, and makes for a good family film that can be used as a teaching moment.

The series ends without resolution and calls for Series 2 to begin as soon as possible so we can find out what happens to Gus, Big Man, and humanity.

DOGS OF BERLIN

***

(Violent crime drama)

This violent crime drama comes from Germany and involves neo-Nazis, crooked cops and politicians, soccer players, and Turkish gangs.

The Germans hate the Turks and the Turks hate the Germans.

The German police have formed a team that is led by a gay Turk and a German cop who breaks every rule in the book.

The German has big gambling debts and woman problems and gets in way over his head.

The Turks run a big gambling operation and coerce Turkish soccer players who play for Germany to throw the game. Both sides do not like the idea of a Turk playing for a German team.

There is murder and mayhem galore, neo-Nazis who fight the Turks and their fellow countrymen, sibling rivalry, adultery, riots, and a bloody final battle between the police and the Turkish compound.

It is all a bit overwhelming, raising many issues, including the universal one about the ends justifying the means.

movies, cinema

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