Read what critics are saying about the Richard Gere indie drama ‘Norman: The Moderate Rise and Tragic Fall of a New York Fixer’ and the jazz doc ‘Chasing Trane: The John Coltrane Story’ which includes commentary from Denzel Washington, Bill Clinton and others.
The Fast crew, a 20th century British explorer and a so-called “fixer” are all headed to theaters this weekend. In addition to The Fate of the Furious and Lost City of Z, also hitting the big screen are Norman: The Moderate Rise and Tragic Fall of a New York Fixer and the jazz doc Chasing Trane: The John Coltrane Story, which includes commentary from Denzel Washington, Bill Clinton and others.
Read on to find out what The Hollywood Reporter‘s critics are saying about the weekend’s new offerings (as well as which film will likely top the weekend box office).
The Fate of the Furious
The Fast crew is back together again. F. Gary Gray’s take on the eighth installment continues the high-speed mayhem of the franchise, but this time in a way that challenges the loyalty of the crew when Vin Diesel’s Dominic Toretto crosses over and teams up with supervillain Charlize Theron, leaving Dwayne Johnson, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese and Ludacris to go on another car chase-and-explosion-filled adventure to try and stop him. THR film critic John DeFore writes in his review that the franchise “delivers exactly what fans have come to expect, for better and for worse.” When it comes to the bottom line he says the film gives a “more familiar feeling than expected” after series star Paul Walker’s death.
Lost City of Z
Charlie Hunnam, Robert Pattinson, Tom Holland and Sienna Miller star in the film based on a 20th century British explorer who disappeared while searching for a mysterious city in the Amazon. The adaptation of David Grann’s best-selling book of the same name was originally set to star Brad Pitt, whose company Plan B produced the film. THR’s chief film critic Todd McCarthy writes that the bottom line of the film is that it’s “traditional, in a very good way.”
Norman: The Moderate Rise and Tragic Fall of a New York Fixer
Richard Gere plays an unusual but well connected “fixer” Norman Oppenheimer, who uses his relationships and skills to pull off financial schemes and political deals but starts to get in trouble when he gets connected to a Israeli politician who is elected prime minister (Lior Ashkenazi). McCarthy says that Gere “remains fascinating onscreen from beginning to end,” making his his hustler character “distinctive and different.”
Chasing Trane: The John Coltrane Story
Denzel Washington, Bill Clinton, Cornel West, Common, along with family and friends of jazz great and alto sax player John Coltrane give insight into his short but significant career, which was cut short as Coltrane died of liver cancer at 40. McCarthy writes that “Director John Scheinfeld’s doc is a comprehensive, engrossing and, it’s tempting to say, worshipful account” of the life of the music titan whom “aficionados would agree deserves a spot on the jazz equivalent of Mount Rushmore.”