Richard sits in on the CFRA Ottawa morning show with host Bill Carroll to talk the new movies coming to theatres, VOD and streaming services including the Kevin Costner family drama “Let Him Go” (in theatres), the Hallmark parody “Cup of Cheer” (streaming), the noir-ish “The Kid Detective” (Theatrical) and the minor-key “Major Arcana” (VOD).
Did you ever wonder what happened to teenage crime busters the Hardy Boys or Nancy Drew when they grew up? “The Kid Detective,” a new dark comedy starring Adam Brody and now playing in theatres, provides some clues to the mystery of what happens when kid crime busters grow up.
“I used to be a kid detective,” says Abe Applebaum (Brody as an adult, Jesse Noah Gruman as the precocious kid). When he was thirteen-years-old he solved the case of the missing find raiser money and was paid in free treats after he solved figured out who robbed the Mr. Henderson’s Ice Cream Shoppe. When his original “office”—actually a treehouse—was chopped down by a disgruntled criminal he opened a real office on Main Street and paid his secretary (Kaitlyn Chalmers-Rizzato) with soda pop. “Sometimes I would lie awake all night and wonder if I was the smartest person in the world,” he says.
He was loved but when his secretary went missing and he failed to crack the case, the bloom was off the rose. He grew up, or, at least got bigger. Now, almost at the big Four-O he’s living off past glories—“I’m Abe Applebaum! I solved the Case of the Missing Time Capsule when I was twelve years old. The mayor gave me the key to the city!”—while sharing a dingy apartment with a roommate and working out of an even dingier office.
He gets the chance to prove himself when high-schooler Caroline (Sophie Nélisse) asks him to solve the murder of her boyfriend Patrick, who died from stabbed seventeen wounds. This is another level from sleuthing the case of the Missing Basketball Magazines. This is the real deal.
“In this line of work you learn one thing quickly,” he tells her. “Everybody has secrets. No matter how simple a case may seem, it is always shocking what you find. I just want you to be prepared.”
From there the case takes dark twists and turns that you might not expect from a movie with the Disney-fied title of “The Kid Detective.”
Director Evan Morgan, in his feature debut, blends the crime solving of “Mystery Team” and the
noir of “Brick” with the world weariness of “The Big Sleep.” It’s a movie that derives humour from Abe’s relative failure as an adult and grown-up detective but never feels like it’s poking fun at him. Thanks to Brody’s performance we see that Abe is a sad sack who once tasted greatness and wants another sip. “It’s difficult to accept who you are in your head,” he says, “and who you are in the world.”
His feeling of being uncertain of how to reclaim his glory days permeates every minute of his work. The story here is very specific but the themes of nostalgia for a happier time and the need for dignity are universal. “I was so far ahead of the game,” he says. “And then one day I woke up and I was… behind.” Brody pulls this off with equal parts vulnerability and (often misplaced) confidence.
“The Kid Detective” is a low-key movie with a high concept that is a little too in love with its own subtleties. The deliberate pacing, however, pays off with a climax brings the story together as both a detective thriller and character study in an interesting and satisfying way.
Richard joins CP24 to have a look at the weekend’s new movies including the bing-bam-boom of “Angel Has Fallen,” the culty thrills of “Ready or Not,” the sweetly silly “The Peanut Butter Falcon” and the documentary “Fiddler: Miracle of Miracles.”
Richard sits in on the CTV NewsChannel with news anchor Marcia MacMillan to have a look at the weekend’s big releases including the actioner “Angel Has Fallen,” the future cult classic “Ready or Not,” the sweetly silly “The Peanut Butter Falcon” and the documentary “Fiddler: Miracle of Miracles.”
Richard has a look at the new movies coming to theatres, including more-explosions-than-story action flick “Angel Has Fallen,” the cult classic to be “Ready or Not” and the sweetly silly “The Peanut Butter Falcon” with Dakota Johnson and Shia LeBeouf with CFRA morning show host Bill Carroll.
A weekly feature from ctvnews.ca! The Crouse Review is a quick, hot take on the weekend’s biggest and most interesting movies! This week Richard looks at the latest from Gerard Butler “Angel Has Fallen,” the future cult classic “Ready or Not” and the sweetly silly “The Peanut Butter Falcon” with Dakota Johnson and Shia LeBeouf.
Richard sits in on the CJAD Montreal morning show with host Andrew Carter to talk the new movies coming to theatres including the blow ’em up good “Angel Has Fallen,” the future cult classic “Ready or Not” and the sweetly silly “The Peanut Butter Falcon” with Dakota Johnson and Shia LeBeouf.
“Ready or Not” puts a darkly humorous spin on a childhood game but it isn’t the first horror film to use hide n’ seek as a plot device. The inventively titled short film “Hide & Shriek” sees a masked killer ruining the fun while “Emelie” features an evil babysitter who keeps the kids busy with a dangerous version of the game. The new film is a bloody satire with sly commentary about the lengths the 1% will do to keep their cash.
Upon marrying Alex (Mark O’Brien) Grace (Samara Weaving) becomes the newest member of the wealthy but weird Le Domas family. “You don’t belong in this family,” says drunk brother-in-law Daniel (Adam Brody). “I mean that as a complement.”
Her new in-laws, including disdainful father-in-law Tony (Henry Czerny), angry mother-in-law Becky (Andie MacDowell), coke-head sister-in-law sister Emilie (Melanie Scrofano) and her husband Fitch Bradley (Kristian Bruun), all heirs to a board game fortune, tell her the marriage won’t be complete until she partakes in a family ritual, a randomly selected midnight game. “It’s just something we do when someone new joins the family,” explains Alex.
The last time this tradition was carried out it took the form of a game of Old Maid. Unfortunately for Grace this time around the family chooses hide n’ seek. “You pulled up a bad card,” says Alex. “The truth is If they don’t kill you something very bad will happen.”
What begins as a lark turns lethal when Grace realizes that to ‘win’ she must first learn to navigate the Le Domas’s rambling old mansion, complete with trap doors and secret passageways. “When you marry into this family you have to play the game or you die. I know it sounds crazy but it’s true.”
“Ready or Not” is a well-executed lo-fi thriller with an unusual premise and lots of creepy characters straight out of a game of “Clue.” For the most part Weaving plays it straight, even as she uses her wedding dress as a tourniquet, while the Le Domas family amps up the antics with broad performances driven by the belief that something terrible will happen if they don’t find Grace by first light. They’re a motley bunch, pseudo-aristocrats with an interest in the occult who don’t appear to have much in common except for the bond of family and a desire to stay alive. As old-money members of the 1% they believe they are above the law, able to indulge in their game (even if they’re not very good at it) because of some old family legend. In other words, as Daniel says, “It’s true what they say. The rich really are different.”
The surprisingly nasty third act gives “Ready or Not” the feel of a future cult classic, a crowd-pleaser with some laughs and a giddily gory climax.