Cinematic Spillover: Short Reviews of High Flying Bird, Cold War and Bigfoot

Here are a few short reviews of movies that will be released on February 8 in San Antonio theaters or on VOD.

Cold War

click to enlarge AMAZON STUDIOS
Amazon Studios
Recently nominated for Academy Awards in the Best Foreign Language, Best Director (Pawel Pawlikowski) and Best Cinematography (Lukasz Zal) categories, the striking Polish drama Cold War is a passionate romance reminiscent of films from a classier cinematic era and one that could compete with A Star is Born for best narrative about the discovery of a hidden talent. Set in Poland in 1949, the black and white picture follows Wiktor (Tomasz Kot), a music conductor and pianist, traveling across the country in search of authentic regional Polish musicians and singers. He meets Zula (Joanna Kulig), a young songstress with a dark past. They fall in love and plan to defect, but things don’t go as planned and the star-crossed lovers are separated – sporadically reuniting over the years to rekindle their feelings for one another. The film is gorgeous and Pawlikowski creates a bleak atmosphere that injects itself into each pristine frame. Cold War opens exclusively at the Santikos Bijou February 8.
3.5 stars out of 5 stars

High Flying Bird

Set in the world of the National Basketball Association (NBA), Ándre Holland (Moonlight) stars as Ray Burke, a fast-talking, sure-footed sports agent trying to do the best he can for his young basketball clients who are waiting patiently for the league to end a long lockout and put its players (and, in turn, their agents) back on the payroll. Like Tom Cruise’s titular character in the 1996 sports rom-com Jerry Maguire, Ray isn’t the type of representative who is going to allow someone to get the best of him. So, when an opportunity presents itself to get the best of the suits in the front office, he takes it. Directed by Academy Award-winning filmmaker Steven Soderberg (Traffic), High Flying Bird is a story of power and greed told from the backrooms of a world very few people get to see. The film’s opening scene starts with a punchy, Aaron Sorkinesque conversation and from there it hits the court running. It’s not the deep dive on the business of basketball it could’ve been, but Soderberg keeps it even-handed and entertaining. High Flying Bird hits Netflix on February 8.
3 stars out of 5 stars

The Man Who Killed Hitler and Then the Bigfoot

click to enlarge RLJ ENTERTAINMENT
RLJ Entertainment
Oscar-nominated actor Sam Elliott (A Star is Born) stars as Calvin Barr, an American hero who no one knows killed Adolf Hitler during WWII. These days, Calvin is a lonely old man thinking back to his younger days and the things he regrets in his life. Calvin sets forth on a new adventure when the U.S. and Canadian governments ask him to use his tracking skills to find a plague-carrying Bigfoot monster who, if not killed soon, will wipe out the world’s population. With Elliott in the lead role, the kitschy setup of Bigfoot take a serious tone and explores how isolation breaks down a human being to his core. In the last part of the film, Elliott spends it in the unforgiving Canadian wilderness hunting the beast. It’s campy, but more reflective than a movie featuring Sasquatch should probably be. The Man Who Killed Hitler and Then the Bigfoot hits VOD February 8.
3 stars out of 5 stars

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