Manchester by the Sea is a depressing, boring, grey turd. It's extremely overrated even if you go in with the attitude of wanting to drown yourself in a miserable bog. I've discussed this movie in detail before. [slashdot.org]
I actually had a fun time watching this movie. About 15 minutes in I remembered "Hey, wasn't this that movie Casey Affleck said was depressing in his monologue hosting SNL?" But I had fun. I knew it was going to be super-depressing, so eventually I just couldn't help but start laughing. I mean, I knew nothing was really going to get better, so the endless parade felt like a parody, and I enjoyed the parody. I also think it's a great character study of a fundamentally broken man who hasn't yet found a way to claw out from the abyss. He has undiagnosed (in the plot) clinical depression; depressed people don't sit around crying, real depression is the inability to feel emotion at most times leaving you a shell of a person. I also appreciated the writing. At no time did characters do really stupid out of character things for the purpose of advancing the plot, which is my big pet peeve for movies these days. Every word felt true to the character, and they felt like real people.
Arrival is fucking dogshit.
Arrival for me is good except for two parts: 1) The military was treated unrealistically. I know lots of movies use a cardboard-cutout stereotype of the military, good or bad, but when the rogue soldier was loading explosives into the ship I was rolling my eyes. Horrible. 2) The ending did NOT think through the implications of these time powers. I was pretty disappointed with that. Now, normally, a really bad ending is enough to trash my appreciation for a film, and there are many films like most of M. Night's where the enjoyment I'd had previously was torpedoed by the ending. For some reason this didn't happen for me on the Arrival. Maybe it's just that half of the movie is SO GOOD that I want to believe as a whole it's better than it is. That said, I'm sure this is a movie that's going to fall in my estimation over time.
I'll agree that Doctor Strange went long, a problem common to action movies now. I still like Civil War, though Winter Soldier is still my favorite main Marvel movie. We'll certainly agree that Batman vs Superman was a disaster. At this point I don't think there's any redemption for Zack Snyder now. Just get it over with and pair him with Damon Lindelof so they can create the worst comic book movie that will ever be made, and be done with it.
I'm sick of movies like Interstellar and Arrival and Passengers masquerading as sci-fi but ending up as romance/drama +
Didn't see Passengers, but I have a very special, intense hatred for the pretension of Interstellar.
One last FUCK YOU goes out to a special turd-in-the-making. Logan. Wasn't the last Wolverine movie bad enough?
I didn't see it.