Who am I? Even before I retired as a Judge, Mrs. TMJ (The Movie Judge) and I would see one or two movies per week. Every Friday morning, The Cincinnati Enquirer printed two or three movie reviews. Some of those reviews included independent movies. After faithfully reading those columns, we selected our movie(s) for the weekend. If we agreed upon an “indie,” we made the 30 minute trip to the Esquire, and with Pizza Uno on one side, and Biaggio’s on the other, it made a great date night. Those reviews led us to some great movies, like The English Patient (1996). Some others were quickly forgotten. Either way, we kept coming back. We love movies!
During those years, folks inside and outside the courthouse would often ask, “We’re going to a movie this weekend. What do you recommend?” I would always give them at least two or three options. As we all are aware, a movie with good reviews is not necessarily enjoyable to watch. Fences (2016) is a perfect example. My preference is to be entertained. After a long and stressful week, I want to escape into the film and its story, the characters, and the spectacle. We all need the magic of movies.
As times have changed, newspapers are not printing as many reviews. People aren’t buying newspapers, anyway. I miss my Friday morning reviews! And so, the ideas for my blog and later, for my Friday Morning Coffee column (even though I don’t drink coffee) were born. That sounds better than Friday Morning Tea, don’t you think? Finally, I bemoan the fact that small theaters like the Esquire are not showing as many independent movies.
The purpose of this blog is to give you reviews focused on enhancing your movie-going experience. Movies are not cheap these days, and the popcorn and colas are even more expensive. I will let you know what to expect before you shell out the big bucks.
I will rate movies with Gavels.
5 Gavels is excellent and rare.
4 Gavels is good and worth your money.
3 Gavels is average and still better than TV.
2 Gavels is poor and ignore unless you have a hot date.
1 Gavel means the movie should not have been made.
Expect that you will disagree with me from time to time on a movie rating. These are just my opinions!
Being a former judge, as you might expect, I have rules which will be referred to and supplemented from time to time, at my sole discretion. Rule No. 1 — I do not watch, nor will I review horror movies, slasher movies, or any of their ilk. (Note: If someone offers to pay me lots of $$$$, this prime directive is certainly subject to change. However, I can’t imagine me giving any such movie more than 1 gavel. Perhaps less.)
Friday Morning Coffee is my weekly column to update you on what is happening in the world of movies. It is an effort to compile tidbits of information into one quick source for you, and add a pithy comment or two. It may discuss rumors, actors, production plans, or even the economics of the movie business, whatever I think may be of interest to you. Please make it a part of your Friday morning routine.
In closing, I hope you enjoy reading thejudge.movie. See you at the movies!