THE IRON CLAW – Review by Pam Grady

As a title, The Iron Claw is both literal and a metaphor. It is the signature move of wrestler Fritz Von Erich when he is about to decimate an opponent in the ring. It also symbolizes the tight grip he holds on the sons who have no real choice except to follow him as the next generation of battling Von Erichs. Writer/director Sean Durkin’s first film since 2020’s The Nest is all at once a sports drama, a family’s biopic, and one of the best depictions of the effects of toxic masculinity ever committed to the screen and a haunting evocation of family dysfunction.

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THE GREATEST BEER RUN EVER – Review by Martha K Baker

The Greatest Beer Run Ever could have been just another bromance or a boy-farce, like The Hangover. It is more than either sub-genre, much more — maybe because it’s based on a real story, as farcical as that is. The film is well realized. John Donohue, called “Chick,” made his beer run to Vietnam in 1967. He had been in the military earlier, stationed in his home state of Massachusetts.

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THE GREATEST BEER RUN EVER – Review by T.J. Callahan

It’s 1967, the Vietnam War is raging and so are opinions on America’s participation in the fight. Zac Efron is John “Chickie” Donahue. A guy in flux who needs to do something that makes a difference. He decides to give his buddies in combat a taste of home, but he ends up getting a big gulp of the battle instead.

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THE GREATEST BEER RUN EVER – Review by Susan Granger

While America’s involvement in the Vietnam War remains controversial, films like The Deer Hunter, Apocalypse Now and Ken Burns’ documentary, have reflected on the conflict’s psychological aspects. So The Greatest Beer Run Ever is a refreshingly entertaining comedic drama, focusing on a crowd-pleasing, behind-the-scenes glimpse of a globe-spanning beer run.

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FIRESTARTER – Review by Susan Kamyab

This 2022 of version Firestarter is just another flop to add to the list of Stephen King adaptations. For those who haven’t seen the original 1984 film, the story follows a young couple and their 11-year-old daughter. Charlie. Due to past lab experiments, the three of them have telekinetic powers. Charlie’s parents have learned to control theirs, but she is unable to contain her sudden burst of flames triggered by anger. But that’s the least of this family’s problems, as a mysterious federal agent is on the hunt to take Charlie away from her parents. From begin to end the film never ignites a big enough flame.

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