Wine Country (2019)



  • Directed by Amy Poehler
  • Starring Amy Poehler, Rachel Dratch, Ana Gasteyer, Maya Rudolph, Paula Pell
  • Written by Liz Cackwoski, Emily Spivey
  • Comedy
  • Rated R
  • 1hr 43m
  • 10 May 2019


A group of friends go on a trip to Napa for one of their 50th birthdays and comedy and/or drama ensues.

How’s the Story?

As someone who is only 28 I can only imagine that this is basically in my future somewhere. I like the idea that a group of women in middle age all get together to celebrate their friendship and a friend’s birthday.

How’s the Acting?

It’s good. It isn’t award winning but I’m glad that the performances are all good enough. Nobody is a bad actor even the random people.

How’s the Writing/Directing?

I like how this is written. This movie is written to be about women for women, and not just that, but for middle aged women which isn’t a largely respected part of society. How many movies can you think of that are aimed at women over 40? Very few, right? This is about middle aged women who are friends and deals with the issues OF middle aged women outside the comedy. I very much appreciate that. There is a market that is untapped and I think this really fits that to a T.

How’s the Cinematography?

Though it’s not a big part of the film, there is actually a decent amount of aerial shots and pans that are very nicely done. This movie isn’t about the camera work, but it’s not something that suffers from poor cinematography in the slightest.

Is It Worth Watching?

Absolutely. I think men won’t like it as much just because the focus is on women and their whole thing, and the fact there are only 2 men on camera with names and neither of them are very important, but if you are a lady and especially if you are an older lady, this movie is absolutely worth watching.

It made me crave wine and friends like they have and I’m only 28. Overall it’s very much worth watching, especially if you have Netflix and two hours of free time.

My Rating: 6/10

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Top 10 Films of 2018

While this has been a great year for movies, or so I’ve heard, I’ve ended up missing and/or skipping a lot of the most popular movies. However, what movies I did see were all worth seeing. I didn’t see a single movie I hated all year (which is rare). I thought about making a Top 5 only to really make me fight to cut out movies I LOVED, but I saw enough that I think a top 10 is still worthy. Even if some of them may not have made top 10 in a year like last year when I hit my record for movie-going, they’re still really great movies that I think should be recognized.

So, not every movie on this list is THE BEST EVER. However, my blog is called Chelsea Loves Movies, so I’m going to give you my top 10 movies of the year and tell you what about it I loved enough to think it deserved to be celebrated.

10. Mortal Engines


Though not as many people enjoyed this as me, I can’t leave this movie off the list. Mortal Engines is the type of movie that sucks you in from the first minute. The opening sequence before the title pops up is easily the best opening of the year. There wasn’t a dull moment in this movie, and I really loved the sets and graphics and just the whole look of this movie. The characters all were so well developed and well written. I particularly loved the diversity of this film. So often movies like this are all white people, and here we have most of the heroes being not-white. All in all, this movie just filled my yearly quota for an action-packed fantasy adventure. If you like things where the heroes are up against sci-fi or fantasy villains fighting to save the world, this is just the movie for you.

9. Oceans 8

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If you’re anything like me, you love a good heist movie and badass women. Having them both together is my jam. There’s very little that I didn’t love about this movie. Anne Hathaway’s performance in this movie was fantastic. She was the best part of this movie, even though I loved so much else about it. Also the heist is just genius. GENIUS!

8. Dumplin


God, what can I say about Dumplin? This movie is so good. It’s so, so good. It has girls supporting girls, girls fighting and overcoming their issues, fat girls being beautiful, a non-binary actor, drag queens, family drama that ends well, and good Southern humor. I loved this movie so much. It’s moving and beautiful and I cried about six times watching it, and the ACTING is spectacular! This is the best movie to watch if you’re feeling low about yourself. It’s about learning, and growth, and grief, and understanding, and it’s just a great movie. Watch it. It’s on Netflix so I know you have access to it.

7. Spider-man: Into the Spider-Verse


Okay, this one I know you’ve seen, we’ve all seen it, but if you haven’t, all you need to know is that it’s the best Spider-Man movie of all. The end. It’s over. And I loooooved Homecoming, so to call this the best Spider-Man movie is big praise from me. Miles Morales is so good, and the entire story is just so touching. The animation style is what really sets it apart though. Seriously, the visual look of this movie is beyond stunning. The comedy and emotions are so good and the characters are all so well written. This is just a fantastic movie and may be the best Marvel movie all year.

6. BlacKkKlansman


I’m hit or miss with Spike Lee movies, but this? God, this is amazing. This movie was beyond well written. The script for this movie was just perfect. The performances were also really amazing. I kept thinking it reminded me a lot of Imperium (a movie I loved but most people ‘meh’ed about) but with a far better script. Adam Driver in particular stands out in this movie. His performance is so subtle but so precise. He’s the absolute best actor they could have picked for this role and I am so happy with this performance. Also, the end of this movie is a very brave move. I was stunned speechless as I walked out of the theater.

5. Black Panther


Honestly, I feel really bad about putting this in 5th. When it came out, I was certain it would be the #1 movie of the year for me. And it’s still so, so good. Don’t get me wrong by it’s middle of the pack placement, because this was just a really strong film. I loved the colors, I love the sets, I loved the writing and the acting and the humor. Shuri is my favorite character all year, for instance. And above all, Killmonger is by far the best villain since Loki when it comes to Marvel. The actors in this movie are all top notch and you couldn’t have asked for a better score/soundtrack for this movie.

4. Love, Simon


This is the movie I’ve wanted since I was a teenager. Everything gay for the longest time was tragic. There are some positive queer stuff in the media these days, but until very recently, every movie with queer people ended in death or suicide or AIDS or other depressing shit like that. This is the first major, wide-released film I can think of that is just a typical teen rom-com with a character who happens to be gay. There’s so little homophobia. The drama is mostly personal, about not wanting things to change. It’s the same as any teen movie where the main character is undergoing some sort of angst about a love interest or friendships or social status. And that’s FANTASTIC! Normalizing the queer experience is wonderful for queer kids. Everything being like “Oh yeah you’re going to die of a gaybashing because you gave someone closeted AIDS” is fucking crushing. You only see yourself suffering on the screen. We NEED more films where queer kids and queer adults are just kids and just adults and being queer is a personal drama, not a death-sentence. This movie deals with the fear of coming out and the fear of those you love reacting badly, and most importantly, it shows that he’s ultimately accepted and still loved AND gets the guy. And that’s revolutionary.

3. Crazy Rich Asians


I love love stories. There’s nothing better to me than a romance done right. Yes, I rarely watch straight-up romances and don’t see many romantic comedies, but I love romance in other genres. This is about the only straight up rom-com I saw all year, and it’s SPECTACULAR. You have a gorgeous man who is sweet and smart and kind, you have a strong woman who is beautiful and loving, and you have a unique story for their romance. But here’s what’s really amazing about this movie: women. This movie is full of women who are strong in their own ways. Love them or hate them, they are all brave and strong and have experiences that challenge them throughout the movie. Gemma Chan deserves an Oscar for her role. I know she’ll never get it, but I firmly believe the best supporting actress Oscar should be hers, gift wrapped with a thank you note tied to it. This movie is so good, and the pacing is perfect, and that wedding scene alone deserves SOME sort of award for the beauty and the emotional depth alone.

2. Keys To The Heart


If a single one of you has seen this movie already, please comment and tell me, because I hadn’t even heard of it until I specifically wanted to see a Korean film. The thought that nobody was talking about this movie when tons of people I follow see non-English films is a travesty. Keys To The Heart is a story about a man who has had no family since he was a child running into the mother he hasn’t seen for decades, and when she offers to let him come live with her and her autistic son he never knew about, he accepts because he’s broke and jobless. The entire movie is about family and growing and learning to understand, and most of all, love someone so different. The way that Joha goes from hating his brother that got their mother when he didn’t to wanting to use him to make money in a piano contest because he’s a savant to loving his little brother is one of the most wonderful emotional journeys I’ve seen in any film ever. This movie is just so well written. I don’t know what it is about Korean film, but even the ones with bad acting or a story I don’t love, I’ve never seen a poorly written Korean film. I honestly thought this would be my #1 film of the year, but upon reflection, only sentimentality kept it from that #1 spot.

1. Won’t You Be My Neighbor?


Mr. Rogers was easily the most important and influential figure of my childhood (outside of family). This documentary taught me even more about someone who made such a difference in my life. I’ve always told people, I think I am a better person for having watched Mr. Rogers Neighborhood as a child. I feel sad for all the people who never saw the show or the children today who missed out on something so monumentally important to childhood development. Fred Rogers was the closest thing to an angel or saint that we’ll ever have on earth. Learning about his history and his life and his endeavors before my time only made me love him more. Also, on a less sentimental level, I love how this was organized as a documentary. The animations of his puppets as transitions is just beautiful. The way it’s organized is just really a great documentary format. If you don’t watch any other documentary from 2018, you should watch this one. If you never got to experience Mr. Rogers as a figure in your life as a child, watch this and learn about this wonderful human. There are so many children who I am positive are better human beings because of this amazing man, and learning about his life and his legacy is honestly the best use of two hours you could ever choose to do. This is just such a wonderful tribute to an incredible human being, and it wouldn’t be honest of me to put it lower down on this list just because I know I’m being sentimental. It’s called Chelsea Loves Movies, and Chelsea Loved This Movie.


So there we have it, my top 10 films of 2018! However, as always, we can’t forget my special categories list!

Best Beard

This year, Best Beard goes to Jack Black in House With The Clock In Its Walls! This iconic beard is just too good to not reward!


Most Tears

This one was tough, because I saw some sad shit this year. Though I cried more times with Dumplin, the MOST tears award goes to Keys To The Heart! Essentially, I spent the last 20 minutes of that movie sobbing. It’s beautiful and tragic and so, so moving. I fell in love with those characters and everything that happened either tore my heart in two or filled it with love.


Most Pretentious

This award goes to Destination Wedding! I love Keanu Reeves and I love Winona Ryder, but god that movie was so pretentious. I was sure the most pretentious would be an Oscar film, but nope. That movie was so, so fucking up its own ass. I am glad I watched it, but Jesus. La La Land was less self-important than this movie.


Laughed Until I Almost Peed

There are a LOT of options here. I saw tons of great comedies this year. However, I think the award has to go to Life of the Party. Melissa McCarthy is just too funny. The scene where they are at the restaurant and learn that the woman her ex was cheating on her with is the mother of the college kid she’s currently fucking? Oh my God, I nearly fell out of my seat. It’s just too, too good.


Cutest Boy

Listen, there were a lot of hot guys in movies this year. LOTS of them. But here, we’re going for CUTE. We’re going for ADORABLE. And the most adorable was definitely Tom from Mortal Engines. Look at those Disney prince eyes!!!


Most Gorgeous Girl

Unlike Cutest Boy, here we’re going for HOTTEST, most BEAUTIFUL woman/girl in anything, and this one goes to Astrid from Crazy Rich Asians. I may have invented this category just to celebrate Gemma Chan’s face. Don’t judge me. She’s so beautiful it hurts my soul and does things to my vagina. She’s possibly the most beautiful woman to ever exist. Don’t question me on this.


Dumbest Movie

Don’t mistake this category as a ‘bad’ movie, because this award goes to Super Troopers 2, which is easily the best ‘we made a sequel 10 years later’ movies I’ve seen so far. I fucking LOVED this movie. It honestly almost made the top 10 list, but I held myself back because the rest of the field was more impressive. But this would be #11 for sure. However, the story is so fucking stupid. It’s hilariously ridiculous. I love it and it is super dumb. Those things don’t have to be mutually exclusive. They go hand in hand sometimes. And this is one of those times.


Best Fuck You Moment

There were TONS of great FU moments this year, but the award has to go to the phone call to David Dukes at the end of BlacKkKlansman. That was just so beautiful. The moment of reveal was just fantastic. There’s little more I hate worse than a bigot, so that was just beautiful. Screen-Shot-2018-08-08-at-9.34.47-AM.png

Biggest Dick Energy

Ironically, the biggest dick energy goes to a woman this year. And I had like 5 scenes with women having serious big dick energy to choose from, but this award goes to the scene in Crazy Rich Asians when Rachel tells Nick’s mother she’s not going to force Nick to choose between the woman he loves and his mother, but tells her he will resent her forever if she makes him do that instead. Rachel has basically accepted she’s lost the love of her life and she just wants to make sure the mother she lost him to knows how bad she just fucked her son up. To vagina-kick an elder is a big fucking thing, therefore, that’s definitely the biggest dick energy of 2018.


Coolest Dress

I mean, there were a LOT of options for this one, A LOT, but I think the award has to go to Jenifer Aniston in Dumplin. The replacement that she gets from the drag queens for the final of the pageant? What’s more perfect than that dress, honestly? It’s so tacky that it’s perfect! I love it. Absolutely love it.



So 2018 was a great year for movies and silly categories, and let’s hope 2019 is just as great for film as we enter the year!

If you liked this post, share it, tell your friends, because I’m going into my new year hoping to post way more movie reviews than 2018 and more viewers motivates me!



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Keys To The Heart (2016)


  • Directed by Sung-Hyun Choi
  • Starring Byung-Hyun Lee, Jung-Min Park, Yuh-Jung Youn
  • Written by Sung-Hyun Choi
  • Comedy, Drama
  • Rated PG-13
  • 2hrs
  • 17 January 2018


Jo Ha, a washed up boxer, runs into his mother, In-Sook, after last seeing her when he was a preteen. He then learns he has a younger brother, Jin-tae, who is autistic and a piano savant.

How’s the Story?

I have to say, ‘son who hasn’t seen mother in ages but meets her again and gets to know his younger brother’ isn’t exactly a story I’ve seen before. I like it though. It’s a very moving story.

How’s the Acting?

Holy shit. That’s all I can say. The Acting is Holy Shit. Byung-Hyun Lee is FUCKING AMAZING in this movie. Yeah, Jung-Min Park is playing an autistic person and does a great job of it, but Jesus. Byung-Hyun Lee blows me away as Jo Ha. Everybody in this movie is good, but nobody steals the thunder of Byung-Hyun Lee.

How’s the Writing/Directing?

I don’t know what it is about Korean movies, but even the ones who aren’t super good, the WRITING is good. This one is SO GOOD. I swear to God, this movie is written with so much depth and so many story lines but they are melded together so amazing. I can’t imagine the skill to write this much tangled plot and make it all flow so smoothly. It’s so good. SO GOOD.  The direction is the same, to turn this into such an AMAZING movie is just fantastic. I mean FUCK me this movie was so well written/directed.

How’s the Cinematography?

The cinematography is pretty standard, but honestly, there are certain scenes where the lighting itself makes the scene, and to me, lighting is part of the cinematography. The way the camera is used includes the light usage. This is just a really pretty movie to watch in certain scenes. In most of it it’s standard, but there’s never BAD cinematography anywhere.

Is It Worth Watching?

This is one of the best movies of 2018. Full stop. The end. This movie is incredible and I’m SHOCKED I hadn’t heard of it until I looked for good Korean movies. This is just beyond amazing. The start is a little slow, but within 20 minutes, it gets GOOD. By the halfway point I already knew this movie was going to be one of the best movies I saw all year.

I cried for 20 minutes straight. Happy, sad, overwhelmed, all of it. I cried so hard for 20 minutes straight at the end of this movie. Just watch it. Fuck trying to convince you further, JUST WATCH IT! IT’S SO GOOD!

My Rating: 8/10

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Mortal Engines (2018)


  • Directed by Christian Rivers
  • Starring Hera Hilmar, Robert Sheehan, Hugo Weaving, Jihae
  • Written by Peter Jackson, Philippa Boyens, Fran Walsh
  • Fantasy, Action
  • Rated PG-13
  • 2h 8min
  • 14 December 2018


In a post-apocalyptic world in which cities move on wheels, Hester Shaw (Hera Hilmar) hopes to take out the leader of London, Thaddeus Valentine (Hugo Weaving), because of his role in her mother’s death. Aided by an unsuspecting ally, Tom Natsworthy (Robert Sheehan), Hester’s only goal in life is to kill Valentine and make him suffer for what he did to her mother.

How’s the Story?

Holy shit, the creativity to come up with the idea of predator cities and roving cities at all is just amazing! I had never heard of this book, but now I NEED to read it! Holy shit, I love this story so much. The idea of Hester getting revenge on her mother so long after her death was just amazing, nonetheless the premise at all!

How’s the Acting?

I will admit, I can’t say it was oscar-worthy for anybody, but nobody in this movie wasn’t at least ‘good’. Everything in this movie was solid acting. There wasn’t a bad actor in this whole thing. Hester was pretty average, but honestly? The stand-out acting roll was definitely Jihae. I don’t know her so I don’t know why her name is only just Jihae, but there were moments her eyes did all the talking. THAT is the mark of an AMAZING actor in my book. Whoever you are, Jihae, I WILL be looking out for you in the future!

How’s the Writing/Directing?

I mean Jesus, the script may not be perfect in some places, but in general, the direction is AMAZING! There’s very few ‘average’ scripts that can be directed to be so amazing, but this is one of them. I can feel Peter Jackson’s influence, but honestly, the director gets a lot of credit for this one. The script does lack in places, which is honestly the only reason this movie isn’t a 10/10, but the direction? It’s just GREAT. I’m not familiar with this actor, but this one was so good I feel inclined to seek out more works by this director.

How’s the Cinematography?

My god with such visuals, how can you NOT admire the way its shot? I didn’t research, but surely most of this is CGI. Either way, it’s PHENOMENAL! Gods, this movie is so beautiful. The look of London ALONE is just mind-blowing. I really, really loved this. Like CRAZY loved how it looked.

Is It Worth Watching?

In spite of stupid Rotten Tomatoes and it’s current 28%, and in spite of all the people who said it was ‘meh’, I can only tell you this is by far one of the best movies of 2018.

Yeah, I said that. One of the best movies of 2018.

The story was creative, the opening sequence was the best of 2018 altogether, the story was never boring, the acting was never bad, and I honestly was FULLY engrossed the WHOLE time! I had never heard of Mortal Engines before this, and now I want to go read the book and I hope there’s a whole series! Honestly, the opening sequence and the final battle were both so good that they were beyond worth watching it for those scenes alone!

This was a movie about survival and revenge and right and wrong and just so much HUMANITY and yet, shockingly, I found myself crying over the fucking Terminator of this world. Like what the fuck? How good do you have to be to make me cry over the TERMINATOR?

Is it perfect? No. I feel like there’s a LOT of information missing that we have to infer. However, the story does NOT suffer from that. I’m willing to overlook all the shortness of information because of the way it’s written and the way the story progresses.

While I haven’t seen as many movies this year as last (thanks depression) I can only say that I LOVED this movie and I don’t doubt that in even my best year, this would be at the top of my list!

My Rating: 9/10

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Looking For Christmas Movies!

Dearest readers, I am well aware I have failed you for the most part this year on reviews. I am also aware that a few weeks ago I promised 25 Days of Christmas reviews…. and just now realized I missed 12/1 and it is currently 12/2.

I only have 6 christmas movie prompts for movies to watch and review that I haven’t already reviewed! If you guys have a favorite christmas movie you want me to see that isn’t:

  • A Christmas Prince
  • A Christmas Story
  • Christmas Vacation
  • I’ll Be Home For Christmas
  • The Perfect Christmas
  • Home Alone
  • Home Alone 2
  • Die Hard
  • Die Hard 2

Please recommend it!

So far the recs are

  • It’s A Wonderful Life
  • Mupper Christmas Carrol
  • Arthur Christmas
  • 60’s Grinch
  • Love, Actually

I need 20 more movies to review! GIVE ME IDEAS!!!

If you rec it, I will acknowledge you!

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BlackKkKlansman (2018)

John David Washington in BlacKkKlansman (2018)

  • Directed by Spike Lee
  • Starring John David Washington, Adam Driver, Laura Harrier
  • Written by Charlie Wachtel, David Rabinowitz
  • Crime
  • Rated R
  • 2hr 15mins
  • 10 August 2018


In 1971, Ron Stallworth is the first black police officer in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He is set to undercover work watching a black power movement speaker, but ends up making history by conning his way into an undercover assignment with the Ku Klux Klan with the help of his white partner, Flip Zimmerman, acting as his stand-in for physical meetings.

How’s the Story?

If you hadn’t told me all along this was a real story I would have never thought something this unbelievable actually happened. It’s such a fantastic thought that a black police officer could successfully infiltrate the KKK, and yet it actually happened. The movie finds a very successful way to tell the story of Ron Stallworth’s achievement. By framing the narrative as an over the top crime drama, the story comes through without like a biopic. It kind of feels very similar to The Nice Guys, in that there’s enough comedy in the crime drama that it doesn’t feel like as solemn of a story as it is. Generally factual tellings of solemn events are done so very soberly, not with flashy cuts and big, cheesy graphics on the screen.

How’s the Acting?

This movie is very well acted. John David Washington is fantastic as Ron Stallworth. He’s so charming and has that ‘something’ that really sells you on this character being who he is. Laura Harrier is compelling as Patrice even if I would have liked to see more of her for how important her character was.

But the real scene stealer in this movie is Adam Driver as Flip. I’ve always thought Adam Driver was a great actor, no doubt, but in this movie that’s so close to over-the-top at most times, his subtlety really stands out. I mean, look at Topher Grace’s great but showy performance as David Duke compared to the ‘a facial tick tells volumes’ type of performance from Adam Driver. The scene where he is talking about how, “Being Jewish was never a ‘thing’ for me, I was just another white kid.” and they discuss how he’s been passing all this time and never ‘knew’ it… God, his performance in that scene is so powerful.

How’s the Writing/Directing?

Spike Lee is a legend and yet I honestly might would say this is his best film yet. The way that he takes Wachtel and Rabinowitz’s script and delivers so many hard punches so effectively is just masterful. And the script is so good because it’s horrifically relatable. Growing up in the South in the 90s, there are things said in this film that I have heard verbatim in my lifetime. The gut-punch of the ending alone is just unbelievable how it goes from everybody happy and laughing about something to the ‘current day’ is just so sobering and such a great ending. I won’t give away anything more about that ending for anybody who hasn’t seen it, but you won’t be prepared. Not for a second.

How’s the Cinematography?

I love how this film is shot. The way that no scene is really standard, that it’s full of jump cuts and cross-edits, and that there’s a little bit of a question to the timeline in some parts, but all of it works so it doesn’t even matter. I particularly love the use of jump cuts and repetition to really hammer something home. The parallels between the script and the screen in some places are just so, so good. This is just a damn good looking film.

Is It Worth Watching?

I rarely say that something is essential viewing, but I’m saying it now: You NEED to see this movie. You don’t want to, you NEED to.

As I mentioned earlier, I have lived in rural Georgia my entire life. There are things from this movie I have heard verbatim in my lifetime, and on here they were said by members of the KKK. It feels so disconnected now because so much has changed in the last 15 years, but at the same time, it really hasn’t. It’s changed in my experience. I only recently learned how little has really changed outside of that.

I grew up racist. I didn’t know what it meant, I didn’t know it was wrong, and I didn’t have any idea I was racist. I had grandparents who grew up poor and white between the Great Depression and World War 2, I had parents who had only ever lived a white existence really, and I lived in a place where it was the year 2003 before the high school of a county 20 minutes away from my house finally stopped having segregated proms. When I was in high school, there was still the white homecoming court and the black homecoming court and I really think the only reason they ended that is because one year the homecoming queen was Mexican and they didn’t know what to do with that. You did NOT date black people if you were white and you did NOT date white people if you were black. My black friend had a white boyfriend in 9th grade and it was like the world had gone mad to most people, and I honestly was one of them.

Because nobody thought anything of it. Nobody thought these things were racist. It sounds ridiculous, but it was true. I remember my dad in the same breath saying, “I don’t have any ill feelings towards black people, but I’d rather you bring home a girl than a black boy.” And it was the same thing all adults said, so I had no idea that there was another option.

In my life, things changed the say way I went from being homophobic to being ‘huh, why did I ever think that?’ which is exposure. I was already more ‘wait, this is racist?’ when I started having more black friends than white ones (no, I’m not leading to the ‘I have a black friend, I can’t be racist!’ thing). I never thought, “he’s hot for a black guy” was a bad thing until my friends were like “Uh, no.” My parents, just like they magically realized homophobia was bad when my best friend came out, stopped saying and thinking racist stuff when all my black friends came for a sleepover and they actually had to interact with black people on a non-professional level. After that time, I went to college where it wasn’t unusual to be one of like 3 white people in the 30 person class because that’s just how it was. I spent 7 years in college and around my parents and friends, so I almost forgot what it was like to live in the rural south.

Then in the past year and a half, back in the ‘real world’, I still hear stuff that was said in this movie. “I don’t hate black people, they’re just not like us.” “There’s a difference between black people and N******, a good black isn’t a N*****.” “Whites are the most oppressed people in this country.” “It was simpler when people stuck with their own kind.” This is all stuff I’ve heard adult humans in society say in just the past year and a half I’ve been out of college and in the ‘real world’. I’ve heard multiple people say Black Panther was ‘racist against white people’ some fucking way, don’t ask me. I’ve heard, “I don’t think we should go there, it must in a bad neighborhood because mostly black people eat there.”

A year ago, in 2017, someone put KKK flyers in people’s mailboxes and the email on the flyer was traced back to an address within 5 miles of where I sit at this moment.

So when I say this movie is ESSENTIAL viewing, I mean that there are still people living in the part of their life like my parents before they talked to black people who weren’t at work. There are still people living me as a child and literally not even knowing that their racism is racism. There are people that could actually learn and change by seeing stuff they have said and done from the point of view of ‘this is villainous’. This is a movie that can and should be seen because it is real life to this day.

Go see this movie.

My Rating: 9/10

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  • Directed by Jeff Tomsic
  • Starring Jeremy Renner, Ed Helms, Jon Hamm, Jake Johnson, Hannibal Buress
  • Written by Rob McKittrick and Mark Steilen
  • Comedy
  • Rated R
  • 1hr 40min
  • 15 June 2018


Every May, a group of friends spend the entire month playing a game of extreme tag, an event that has lasted for the past 30 years. This year, Jerry (Jeremy Renner) has decided he will retire from the game with a perfect record of never being tagged. His friends are determined to keep that from happening by using Jerry’s wedding as the perfect chance to finally tag him.

How’s the Story?

I honestly didn’t know this was based on a true story going in, but I thought all along that this was a great idea. The point of the game is that this way, they stay ‘young’ and remain friends from childhood all the way to their middle-aged years. It’s such a nice sentiment that the concept alone had me interested. Once I watched it and got the full story, oh wow. I really, really liked the story for this movie.

How’s the Acting?

For a comedy that’s mainly slapstick, there’s some good performances in this movie. Ed Helms is surprisingly fantastic here. I’ve never really liked him that much but finally in this movie, he’s really fun.  Also, when is Isla Fisher not hilarious? I love her so much. She’s so funny and she’s extra hilarious here. Also, I’ve never actually seen Annabelle Wallis in a comedy, and though she wasn’t really FUNNY here, I still enjoyed her character and the way she played her.

How’s the Writing/Directing?

Though there are some lines that don’t really land amazingly, but I really do enjoy the way this one is written. A lot of the story is told in spurts of action, which is enjoyable.

Speaking of Spurts of Action, I love how this is told very “Sherlock Holmes” style with the predictions of what’s going on in voice-over. I think it’s freaking hilarious to use that in a comedy manner. The slow-motion and voice-over combination works so effectively in this film and it never stops being funny.

How’s the Cinematography?

This movie is visually nothing special until you pay attention to just all the details in every scene. There’s so much information told with the camera, which sounds very ‘well duh, Chelsea, that’s how it works’ but in comedy, camera work is usually very straight forward, lots of shot-reverse-shot, not a lot of adaptive camera work like is in this one. It’s shot like an action movie, which makes sense because there’s a lot of action in it, it’s a very slapstick movie as well, so it works really well.

Is It Worth Watching?

Listen, if you don’t like comedy, you probably won’t like this movie. But if you are a fan of comedy, such as myself, you will love it! It’s not just funny, and it’s not stupid funny, it’s silly-but-smart funny and has so much heart. It’s clever in its comedy and in tricking your expectations. The story is as heartwarming as it is hilarious. The fact this movie is based on a real story and the end of the movie shows clips of the real life guys and their fun adventures together only seals the deal on that warm, sappy feeling of ‘awwww’ that this movie will give you.

Tag is a movie about adults finding a way to keep their childhood friendships alive in a creative, funny, and very FUN way. What more can you want from a comedy than tons of laughs, silly action moments, and a whole lot of heart?

I loved this movie. One of the best comedies I’ve seen in a WHILE.

My Rating: 9/10

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Black Panther (2018)

***Turns out this was in drafts, not posted. I am sorry!!! I can’t believe I never bothered checking back to see if it was actually posted!***


  • Directed by Ryan Coogler
  • Starring Chadwick Boseman, Michael B. Jordan, Danai Gurira
  • Written by Ryan Coogler, Joe Robert Cole
  • Superhero, Action
  • Rated PG-13
  • 2hr 14mins
  • 16 February 2018


King T’Challa is set to be crowned officially as the ruler of Wakanda when an interloper threatens his kingdom and his crown.

How’s the Story?

I’ve wanted more of Wakanda ever since T’Challa was introduced to the MCU and the not-uncommon story of a new king being threatened by a villain who is the product of his father’s folly is rehashed into something very unique and interesting here. Killmonger is a really, really good MCU villain that keeps what could have been the same-old-same-old fresh and interesting.

How’s the Acting?

I said when I watched Civil War that T’Challa is one of the best performed characters in the MCU. Chadwick Boseman did not disappoint at all. The performances by Boseman, Jordan, and Danai Gurira. She and Lupita Nyong’o together killed it, but I would say the superior performance of the two was Gurira. Either way, both ladies and both men delivered performances of a lifetime and I was so impressed.

How’s the Writing/Directing?

This movie achieves things that few other MCU movies have managed and I really think it’s down to the writing and directing. There are issues in almost every MCU film with women being plot devices more than people (not to a ‘this is a problem’ level, but in an underlying ‘this is annoying’ way), but in this film that really isn’t the case. Yes, we’re introduced to Lupita Nyong’o’s character as a love interest for T’Challa, but there really isn’t much focus on her as that. She’s there as her own character with relationships to most of the other main characters. Nakia is more the Queen and Shuri’s protector and Okoye’s fighting partner than she is T’Challa’s love interest. And don’t even get me started on Shuri. Oh my God, she’s just a delight in every single way.

Killmonger works so well as a villain because viewers either identify with him or understand those who identify with him, and it’s hard to argue with his reasoning. Though he isn’t as likeable as my favorite MCU villain, he’s actually probably the one you most sympathize with, which is really impressive seeing as he’s hard, vicious, and you don’t like him at all. He achieves Magneto levels of sympathetic villain while still garnering as much distaste for him as that weasely senator from IM2 and Winter Soldier. That is just so impressive.

How’s the Cinematography?

This movie is gorgeous, there’s no two ways about it. Marvel movies generally are impressively cinematic and extraordinary. I don’t feel like I need to go on and on about how beautifully done the colors and the fight scenes are. However, I will say, there’s this one shot where the camera turns a full 180 from upside down to right-side up that just thrilled me in the cinema. It was just so cool and fit the mood so well.

Is It Worth Watching?

Black Panther is a truly impressive movie. It was so highly anticipated I feared that it might disappoint, but it really didn’t. This movie has so much heart and characters you really get invested in. This is the movie we all needed and one that was so popular that it took me two weeks to get to a showing that wasn’t sold out. I have MoviePass so I didn’t want to spend my money on a pre-order when I already pay for MoviePass, but I almost gave in because it was taking so long to get to a showing at a time convenient for me that wasn’t sold out.

I’ve literally never seen a movie sell out for anything other than the first Friday night of release at the local cinema. This still had showings selling out the third Saturday after it was released. That says all you need to know about the box office hit that this movie is.

So is it worth watching? YES!

My Rating: 8/10

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Love, Simon (2018)


  • Directed by Greg Berlanti
  • Starring Nick Robinson, Logan Miller, Katherine Langsford, Alexandra Shipp
  • Written by Elizabeth Berger, Isaac Aptaker
  • Romance, Comedy, Queer
  • Rated PG-13
  • 1hr 50mins.
  • 16 March 2018


Simon Spier has a perfectly normal life. He has a great family, great friends, and a totally normal high school experience… except he’s secretly gay. When another gay kid in school anonymously posts his confession on the local teen website, Simon starts an online friendship with the mysterious Blue, the only person he can (under the pseudonym Jaques) share his secret with. His senior year goes from perfectly average and normal to being a test of friendships, secrets, and learning to be his true self without fear.

How’s the Story?

The story is fantastic. There are a dozen movies about coming out and thousands of coming-of-age films, but none of them are funny, sincere, heartfelt teen romantic comedies about a gay boy learning to be himself and live the life he deserves to live without fear. It’s just something so unique and so fitting for the Centennial generation’s attitude towards being gay and coming out. My siblings are all Centinnials and the attitudes in this film are spot on for how their high school experience is. The homophobes are hated by the general population, there are a few brave queer kids who are able to be themselves and face the burden of the minority of the student body who are assholes, and there are adults who are willing to stand up for the queer kids, and yet for all of that, there’s still the struggle of letting the world truly see who you are.

It’s just very well-told and perfect for teens these days.

How’s the Acting?

The acting is good. I don’t really foresee any Oscar nominations for any of these performances, but Nick Robinson does a great job bringing Simon to life, and all of his friends are very well done. On a normal movie spectrum, this is a solidly acted film with no real surprises.

As a queer film, however, anything better than cheesy soap-opera level acting is FANTASTIC! So as a queer film that isn’t tragic Oscar-bait, this is one of the best acted films I’ve ever seen in my life.

(Side note: Ms. Albright is the best side character possibly ever created. Just saying.)

How’s the Writing/Directing?

As I said, this film feels genuine. It feels like a real teen experience. I’m twenty-seven, but I have a brother and sister who will be seventeen soon and are juniors in high school and a baby sister who is fourteen and will be a freshman next year, and these kids feel real. They feel like actual teenagers the way I observe my siblings and their friends together.

The dialogue is great, as well. There are a few lines that are just beyond incredible. One in particular that will stick with me forever is Jennifer Garner’s line about “You can finally exhale.” That line made my heart clench in the most beautiful way. There’s just something special about the way people speak to each other in this film so that it feels genuine.

My ONLY gripe is that it’s so unrealistic, in the experience of me and every other queer person I know, that his friends don’t also end up coming out as some form of queer. Maybe it’s the age of the creators, but trust me: you all start out straight, and by the time everybody’s done coming out, there’s like 1 token hetero amongst your 8 person friend group.

How’s the Cinematography?

While nothing is mind-blowing, there are some beautiful shots in this movie. I love the way colors are used in various places, and I love the choice for Blue to be shown as the various suspects for Blue’s identity with a blue/gray tinge. I love the scenes in cars, too. It’s just a great visual way to keep the film feeling ‘young’.

Is It Worth Watching?

What makes Love, Simon so groundbreaking isn’t masterpiece film making or Oscar-worthy acting, rather it’s the fact that it’s a teen rom-com about a gay boy. It’s Cinderella Story meets Never Been Kissed meets 10 Things I Hate About You meets a dozen other famous rom-coms that all differ from this one solely in the fact that those movies are about a girl and a boy and this is about a boy and a boy. And that one simple fact is life changing.

This is a movie for the kids out there who want to see a movie where there’s no gay-bashing, no suicide, no AIDS death, a movie where the homophobic kids are treated like disgusting assholes by everybody else in it, a movie where there’s no threat of being disowned by family or friends for being gay, a movie about what it’s like to not have to be terrified of anything other than things changing when you don’t want them to change, all because you’re queer. Yes, it has drama and angst and life-lessons, but it’s the same drama/angst/life-lessons that other teen movies have shown about choosing to be who you are and not hide something important just because you’re afraid of change.

We don’t need another tragedy filled Oscar-movie in the queer community. We need a boy meeting another boy online who he feels a connection with and trying to come into himself so that he can get his big, romantic, public fairy-tale kiss while the rest of the kids cheer for a happy ending.

Do you know how often we get happy endings in queer films? Especially ones that aren’t straight-to-Netflix and not very good? Widely available, highly talked about queer films are usually about tragedy and death and violence and sad endings where the lovers don’t end up together. Freaking Moonlight is probably the happiest queer movie to get talked about that I can think of, and that movie is a big bundle of terrible pills to swallow.

When you feed queer kids nothing but media that assumes they will live tragic, often short, pain-filled lives, it fucks with their heads. Straight kids get a thousand movies about the guy gets the girl and they share a romantic kiss and live happily ever after, they grow up from childhood on this notion that love is just a given in their future. Queer kids see straight people falling in love and queer people being murdered for who they are or dying of AIDS.

Love, Simon gives queer kids the chance to feel the same thing straight kids get to feel for possibly the first time in their lives. That kind of hope? That’s indescribable.

So do I think Love, Simon is worth watching? What the hell do you think?!

My Rating: 10/10

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Get Out (2017)


  • Directed by Jordan Peele
  • Starring Daniel Kaluuya, Allison Williams, Marcus Henderson
  • Written by Jordan Peele
  • Horror, Suspense
  • Rated R
  • 1hr 44 mins.
  • 24 February 2017


Chris, a black man, is invited to spend the weekend with his white girlfriend, Rose, and her family up in the country. Almost as soon as he arrives, things begin to seem very strange until he finally discovers a horrifying secret about the other black people in the neighborhood.

How’s the Story?

This story is fucking terrifying. The worst part is, I truly expected a different ending than this one. No spoilers, but let’s say I expected far worse than what did happen. Why? Because this shit is reality. No, maybe the ultimate Evil Scheme isn’t very realistic, but as far as the general ‘scary white people and the lone, scared black guy’ story goes, that shit’s totally realistic. Which makes it terrifying.

How’s the Acting?

Oh maaaannnnnn. Holy shit Daniel Kaluuya was amazing! I’ve never heard of him before this, but he was incredible. The whole ensemble was good, but he knocked it out of the park. I really, really want to see him in about fifty things. There is just so much good in the performances here. It’s amazing.

How’s the Writing/Directing?

Listen, I’m white and this movie is viscerally terrifying, that’s how incredibly written and directed this is. I’ve lived my whole life being on the safe side of the situation’s in this movie that sent off alarm bells, and yet I still kept covering my face and going, “RUN, BITCH!” as if I knew exactly what that felt like from his perspective.

That’s a mark if incredible writing. Jordan Peel managed to write something that puts any viewer into this guys perspective to make you terrified for this guy’s life. I had the same feeling watching this movie as I do when I see a lone woman in an isolated place with a lot of men: the pit-of-your-stomach terror that screams, ‘Dear God, run for your life’. There wasn’t a beat of this movie that wasn’t absolutely perfect.

How’s the Cinematography?

It’s pretty good. I won’t say it’s the best ever, but I do appreciate how it’s shot in certain moments. The lighting in particular is very well done. I’ve always been a fan of good lighting. Overall, it’s good. It’s nothing special, but it’s all perfectly good enough.

Is It Worth Watching?

Yes! I’m sad I didn’t see this movie until this week! If I had seen it in 2017, it would’ve been top 5 of the year. This movie is terrifying in the best way. It’s horror without blood and guts. It’s psychological horror on par with something like Psycho. Yes, I just said on part with Psycho. This movie does the same thing as that one in how it keeps you feeling uneasy all along. You know something is coming. There isn’t a moment where you feel comfortable. You just know something bad is going to happen.

I think the only thing that’s a little weak for me is the performance of the girlfriend. She’s just kind of there. Also, I never really understood the deer motif. It didn’t distract from the story, but I didn’t really understand why that was chosen. I’ve seen it twice now and I still don’t understand.

That said, this movie is a solid winner for me. By far the best of the Best Picture Nominees I caught this week. I didn’t see them all, but this is the best of the four I have seen by a MILE.

My Rating: 9/10

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