Beka Perlstein’s TOP 10/WORST 3 MOVIES OF 2015!

by Gumbercules9000 on Dec 29th, 2015

Beka P., Here…


I got to see a ton of movies this year, and out of the ones I’ve seen, these are my favorite ten and the worst three that I saw all year. Let me know if you agree or don’t. Enjoy.

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Beka’s Film Review: ‘Gringo’!

by Gumbercules9000 on Mar 8th, 2018

Gringo is a really fun film that wasn’t on my radar until I saw Joel Edgerton on a late night show and I’m so glad I did. Fresh off Red Sparrow, I saw him on Colbert and discovered he is hotter than you imagine, because he is Australian and also he has this other film, Gringo, which p.s., his brother Nash Edgerton directed. The cast is brimming with stars that are A listers and people that shine despite their lack of name recognition. Edgerton plays corporate dick, Richard Rusk, who is sleeping with everyone and has a general disregard for everything unless it benefits him. Charlize Theron plays Elaine Markinson, a rough woman “working” her way to the top who knows how to get what she wants. The standout however is David Oyelowo, who plays Harold Soyinka, a middle-management nobody whose life is crumbling at the hands of the two players above.

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Beka’s Review: ‘Red Sparrow’!

by Gumbercules9000 on Mar 1st, 2018

Do you love spy movies? Are you way too into the Russia probe? Do you like gratuitous torture scenes? Did you miss the Jennifer Lawrence nudes? Get your tix for Red Sparrow, because it’s right up your alley. Walking in and realizing this movie is two hours and twenty minutes sets you back, but I have to be honest, once it started, it doesn’t drag. Without spoiling this spy thriller for you, the most I can say is that Jennifer Lawrence is a prima ballerina whose leg legit gets shattered during a performance and in order to keep her government paid housing and medical care for her ill mom, her dirty uncle sends her to whore school to learn to be a spy. She becomes their best student. AND. HERE. WE. GO.

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by Gumbercules9000 on Apr 7th, 2020

“I hope that people will take to The Innocence Files for so many reasons.”

If you’ve noticed an uptick in documentaries about the wrongfully convicted, you aren’t alone. It could be that it’s a hot topic, or that celebrities have jumped on the bandwagon, or possibly, just maybe, because there are more innocent people in prison then we are willing to admit. As organizations like The Innocence Project continue to exonerate people it becomes harder and harder to turn a blind eye to this topic. With that comes media coverage, and now, the wrongfully convicted have made their way to the holy grail of streaming services: Netflix. The Innocence Files premieres on April 15th amid a national quarantine and I couldn’t be more excited about it. I stopped watching Tiger King, Love is Blind and Ozark and binged nine episodes over three days. These are admittedly hard to watch, but for anyone working in criminal justice, this is the same song, different verse. I hope that people will take to this series for so many reasons, but here are my major selling points.

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Just Mercy – Film Review!

by Gumbercules9000 on Jan 10th, 2020

Just Mercy, the adaptation of the novel by Bryan Stevenson, is superb. I say this as someone who read the book, as a criminal defense lawyer, and most importantly, as someone who needs the message of hope now more than ever. As a lawyer who works in this field, I saw the film through a different lens, and I want to preface this review with that caveat. But, this film needs to be seen by people that have nothing to do with the criminal justice system. It’s not just a film for the black community, or for someone touched by the system, or for the disenfranchised- this is a story that needs to be told on a big screen to anyone that is willing to listen. I hope you are all ears. 

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Bombshell – Film Review!

by Gumbercules9000 on Dec 20th, 2019

“I appreciate the message it sends of kickass women who continue to stick it to the man, but the film falls flat when it neglects to accent just how devastating a true bombshell moment can be. “

Just as the explosive revelation that the men at Fox News were creeping on the women there made a few waves and then fell flat, so does Bombshell, a movie based on harassment at America’s premiere conservative network. This is a star-studded cast and I was really hoping for a blockbuster film, but it just didn’t hold up as one of the year’s better films. 

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by Gumbercules9000 on Nov 18th, 2019

“If I could sum A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood up best for you, a boy about 10 years old gave it a standing ovation and it’s not exactly a kid’s movie.”

Mr. Rogers continues to charm on-screen with the newest installation in films that seem to capture the heart and soul of America’s childhood sweetheart in A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood. This film is a total 180 from last year’s Won’t You Be My Neighbor documentary which focused primarily on Rogers, as this film centers more on journalist Lloyd Vogel (Matthew Rhys) and the relationship he lacks with his father (Chris Cooper). It’s not what I was expecting, but I am not mad it’s what I got. 

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THE GOOD LIAR – Film Review!

by Gumbercules9000 on Nov 16th, 2019

“If you love Mirren and McKellen, I wouldn’t miss The Good Liar, as their performances are always good.”

The Good Liar pairs Helen Mirren and Ian McKellen in what purports to be a twisty cat-mouse thriller. The two actors are by far the most thrilling part of the film, as there’s not much of a thriller to be seen. The performances though are quite enjoyable and the pairing is one that brings an otherwise bland con-game to life on screen. This film, directed by Bill Condon (Beauty and the Beast) brings Nicholas Searles’ novel to life; however, I think it may have unfolded better page after page in a nice reading nook than in a dark theater over two hours. 

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Late Night – Film Review!

by Gumbercules9000 on Jun 13th, 2019

“Late Night is a funny film with some great messages and solid performances.”

Late Night, written and co-produced by Mindy Kaling, who also happens to star in the film, hits on a lot of levels and in mostly all the right ways. Kaling plays Molly, a naïve diversity hire on the Katherine Newberry show, the only late night show starring a woman. Newberry, played by Emma Thompson has ruled the late night airwaves for decades but alas, she’s aging, and no one likes an aging woman. In a time when her ratings are dropping and the female head of the network wants to replace her with what feels like a swinging dick, she has her right hand man find literally any woman to add to the writing staff. In walks Molly who isn’t at all what the showrunners want, but she has all the right parts. 

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Long Shot – Film Review!

by Gumbercules9000 on May 2nd, 2019


“Long Shot is fun to suspend disbelief for the sake of a romantic comedy.”

In reality, it’s a long shot that Charlize Theron and Seth Rogen end up together, but in Long Shot, it’s fun to suspend disbelief for the sake of a romantic comedy. This is Hitch meets Notting Hill and honestly, it was one of the better rom-coms I have seen lately. It’s got just enough star power, with smaller but shiny supporting roles, that it doesn’t overwhelm like the films that throw in every star they can (New Years Eve or He’s Just Not That Into You).  The plot is a bit farfetched, but it’s a Hollywood love story so just go with it. 

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‘The Best of Enemies’ – Film Review!

by Gumbercules9000 on Apr 5th, 2019


“The Best of Enemies is worth the watch.” 

The Best of Enemies is yet another film hitting theaters that tackles race relations and bills itself as a feel good comedy of sorts. Last year we got Blackkklansman and Green Book, two very different takes, and yet both wrapped up the systemic racism with pretty bows and left viewers feeling pretty good about the outcomes. The Best of Enemies is no different, as it’s based on a true story and attempts to show how even the most racist among us can change their ways. It’s an enjoyable movie; the performances are strong, and the story is a good one, but if you had a beef with Green Book for the way it portrayed race, you will probably take issue with The Best of Enemies, too. 

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‘The Aftermath’ – Film Review!

by Gumbercules9000 on Mar 29th, 2019


“If you catch it on a movie channel, a plane, or the Hallmark Channel (where quite honestly it belongs), check it out. Otherwise, this is one I would skip.” 

The best part of ‘The Aftermath‘ was the scenery. Let’s start there and unpack how this film that should work falls flat. In 1946 post-war Germany, Rachel (Keira Knightly) arrives to reconnect with her military husband, Lewis (Jason Clarke). Lewis is a British Colonel who, along with the allied forces, is attempting to rebuild Hamburg, which has all but been destroyed. The two take over the gorgeous home of Stephen Lubert (Alexander Skarsgård), a widowed architect, and his terrible daughter Freda (Flora Thiemann). Over Rachel’s pleadings, Lewis allows Stephen and Freda to stay (albeit Anne Frank style in the attack) and thus begins the slow, sad soap opera that is ‘The Aftermath‘. 

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‘Green Book’ – 4K UHD Review!

by Gumbercules9000 on Mar 19th, 2019


(Film Review Portion Written by Beka Perlstein)

Green Book is a dramedy based on the real-life friendship between the most unusual of friends. Donald Shirley (Mahershala Ali), of The Don Shirley Trio, and “Tony Lip” Vallelonga (Viggo Mortensen), a bouncer from the Copa, embark on a concert tour through the South with Vallelonga as Shirley’s driver. The name of the film is taken from the pamphlet that was published during the 1960s that informed black people of establishments that were safe for them to stay in, eat at, or stop at while traveling. That was a foreign concept to me, as well as Vallelonga in the movie, as the only time Green Book is explained is when he is made aware that there will be times the two can’t stay at the same hotels and he is provided with the book.

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‘On the Basis of Sex’ – Film Review!

by Gumbercules9000 on Dec 24th, 2018

On the Basis of Sex proves that a mediocre film can still shine when you’re crazy about the subject. People can’t get enough of Ruth Bader Ginsburg (RBG) these days. On the Basis of Sex follows on the heels of the RBG documentary that had everyone going gaga over the matron justice and while I enjoyed this film it just isn’t the same with a stand in. The movie covers roughly twenty years of her life, from college to just after her first big case, so the feel is completely different than the whirlwind of the documentary that covered it all, but the real shift is that it’s a big picture flick with big time actors and the whole thing feels rather campy at times. 

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Mary Poppins Returns: Film Review!

by Gumbercules9000 on Dec 19th, 2018


Practically perfect in every way. It describes the nanny known as Mary Poppins, as well as the film that brings her back into the lives of the young and young at heart. Mary Poppins Returns is hitting theaters more than fifty years after Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke made the film a smashing success. This sequel brings a new Mary to life with Emily Blunt as Poppins and Lin Manuel Miranda as her lamplighter sidekick. It’s different, but it doesn’t stray, and it certainly will have audiences smiling, singing, and raving about the delightful nanny’s return.

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