Wednesday, July 6, 2022

Weekend Watch: ‘Uncle Drew’ and ‘Sicario’ Worth Watching

Uncle Drew” is an ingenious idea that combines young and old adversaries, old school and new school, R&B classics and Hip Hop for a hilarious film with a message of friendship and inspiration. Although the game in “Uncle Drew” is basketball and the game in “Tag” is tag, both movies utilize the adage, “You don’t stop playing because you get old, you get old because you stop playing.”

And apparently playing basketball once again has done wonders for codgers Uncle Drew (Kyrie Irving), Big Fella (Shaquille O’Neal), Preacher (Chris Webber), Boots (Nate Robinson), Lights (Reggie Miller), and Betty Lou (Lisa Leslie), from restoring eyesight to curing paralysis.

After spending his life savings to enter his team in the Harlem Rucker Classic street ball tournament, Dax (Lil Rel Howery) is dealt a series of unfortunate blows, including losing the team to his longtime rival (Nick Kroll). Desperate to win the tournament and the cash prize, Dax meets the man, the myth, the legend Uncle Drew, NBA AllStar Irving, and convinces him to return to the court.

The Mensa crowd might not be able to bite their teeth into these cartoonish characters, but it’s fun, light entertainment for the PG-13 audience. Charles Stone III directs and Mike Epps, Erica Ash, J.B. Smoove, Tiffany Haddish also star.

Sicario: Day of the Soldado

Josh Brolin, Jeffrey Donovan, and Benecio Del Toro in ‘Sicario: Day of Soldado.’

That man on the Hill will relish in “Sicario: Soldado,” directed by Stefano Sollima. The film deals with the drug war on the U.S.-Mexico border, trafficking, Cartel carnage, and a jihadist suicide bomber who blows himself up near the border. Audiences are also taken into maybe one of those “shit hole” African countries the man on the Hill spoke about when we see a terrorist being interrogated? In that scene U.S. operative Matt Graver (Josh Brolin) says, “This is Africa. I can do whatever I want.”

Emily Blount is not in “Day of Soldado” and I wondered if the movie could sustain the tension her arresting narrative brought to the story in “Sicario,” with Graver and Alejandro (Benicio Del Toro) basically being her supporting characters. I also miss Daniel Kaluuya who represented. But “Soldado” went beyond my expectations. The action is non-stop and from the moment the film begins until it ends, your body is on high alert to accompany the quickening heartbeats and rapid pulse rates.

Catherine Keener, Jeffrey Donovan, Isabela Moner, and Matthew Modine also star.       Twitter: @thefilmstrip

Marie Moore
Veteran syndicated journalist who covers film and television.




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