Jesse Hassenger, The AV Club

Jesse Hassenger

The AV Club

New York, NY, United States

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Recent articles by Jesse:

Jennifer's Body was an unjust victim of Diablo Cody backlash

Diablo Cody's quippy screenplay is a feature, not a bug of Jennifer's Body, a horror-comedy that bore the brunt of the backlash against her and star Megan Fox. → Read More

An unnecessary sequel to The Croods still has some prehistoric fun

Though this sequel to the DreamWorks cave people comedy The Croods is gag-heavier, the hit rate remains relatively high and the pop-culture references remain low. → Read More

Kurt Russell is coming back to town in Netflix yuletide dud The Christmas Chronicles Part II

The Christmas Chronicles Part II has moments that work as a live-action Rankin-Bass special, and the movie also folds in some old Santa lore; the ridiculous world-building that weighs down so many big-budget fantasies here has some cross-cultural sprightliness. → Read More

Right before Rush Hour, Jackie Chan ran the slapstick obstacle course of Mr. Nice Guy

Right before Rush Hour launched him to a new plane of American stardom, Jackie Chan played a hapless chef outrunning crooks in the fleet, fun Mr. Nice Guy. → Read More

Herzog's Grizzly Man is a nature doc about the strangeness of humans

Werner Herzog spends a lot of Grizzly Man attempting to figure out why a filmmaker and showman became so convinced he belonged among the bears. He made his own form of nature doc about the stubborn, quixotic behavior of humans in the wild. → Read More

Vince Vaughn body-swaps into a slasher comedy with the fun horror hybrid Freaky

Even when Freaky doesn’t live up to its full potential, there’s still something oddly satisfying about unmasking a slasher movie to reveal the ’80s comedy lurking underneath. → Read More

Kevin Costner and Diane Lane embark on a Western-ish mission to Let Him Go

Writer-director Thomas Bezucha shows remarkable patience in developing this low-key rescue mission—or maybe he assumes that his audience won’t need much prompting to side with Diane Lane and Kevin Costner, but will enjoy extra time with them all the same. → Read More

John Carpenter assembled 3 different scream queens to fear The Fog

Compared to the pedestrian returns of Michael Myers, The Fog makes a strong case that charismatic pros like Jamie Lee Curtis and Adrienne Barbeau (and masters like John Carpenter and Dean Cundey) are more valuable assets to the genre than any iconic bogeyman. → Read More

Borat Subsequent Moviefilm brings Sacha Baron Cohen’s famous character into a changed landscape

Sacha Baron Cohen's comedy routine has changed a little, but not nearly as much as the world has. → Read More

Park Chan-wook does Hitchcock by way of De Palma in the stylish Stoker

Stoker isn’t a formal remake but rather a stylish Brian De Palma-style riff that honors Hitchcock’s twisty sense of craft by twisting and gnarling it further. → Read More

Adam Sandler churns out some seasonal Netflix content with the fitfully funny Hubie Halloween

With its parade of day-playing guest stars, candy-bar product placement, and family-friendly anti-bullying messaging, it’s as much a Sandlerverse Halloween special as a feature film. → Read More

Bill Murray, Adam Sandler, and a whole lot of horror movies are coming this October

Here's what’s coming to a living room—and, yes, some theaters—near you this October. → Read More

Aya Cash thinks up some scary stories to tell in the dark in the smart but overlong Scare Me

At 104 minutes, Scare Me is just a little too long for a horror comedy about two strangers telling each other spooky tales. → Read More

Celebrity cameos now dominate Saturday Night Live’s political sketches, and maybe that’s a good thing

SNL’s guest star addiction goes beyond Alec Baldwin’s Trump. Jim Carrey’s Joe Biden will jump into a revolving door that’s included Robert De Niro as Robert Mueller, Ben Stiller as Michael Cohen, Steve Martin as Roger Stone, and Bill Murray as Steve Bannon. → Read More

HAIM has given Paul Thomas Anderson an unlikely second career

Paul Thomas Anderson, the auteur behind There Will Be Blood and Boogie Nights, has a second gig directing HAIM's music videos. The results are fascinating to unpack. → Read More

Millie Bobby Brown solves a dull mystery in Netflix’s disappointing Enola Holmes

The Arthur Conan Doyle estate needn’t fret over unauthorized cribbing. All that’s really left of Holmes here is the name. → Read More

A one-time Coen collaborator imitates their sillier movies in the star-studded Big Trouble

It’s easy to overlook the degree to which this star-studded caper resembles a Coen brothers comedy; it’s even directed by their former cinematographer, Barry Sonnenfeld. → Read More

The irresponsibility of Jurassic World is alive and well at Camp Cretaceous

Camp Cretaceous syncs up perfectly with its live-action cousin, not just in the details of its plot but how that plot’s momentum is sped up by pure, abject stupidity, far exceeding mere man-tampers-with-nature hubris. → Read More

Blackbird review: Sarandon, Winslet can't enliven euthanasia drama

In this stagy remake of the 2014 Danish film Silent Heart, Susan Sarandon plays a dying woman who plans to die by physician-assisted suicide after a weekend with her family (Kate Winslet, Mia Wasikowska, Rainn Wilson, Sam Neill). → Read More

The fall movie season begins with Tenet, Mulan, and a Charlie Kaufman mindbender

Here's everything coming to a living room—and, yes, some theaters—near you. → Read More