Leo Brady reviews “Toni Erdmann,” “The Red Turtle,” and “John Wick: Chapter 2”



Toni Erdmann is the funniest movie of the year and nobody in going to see it. At least stateside they won’t see it. The new German drama/comedy from Maren Ade has a limited release in this equally serious and hilarious film about the relationship between a daughter and her father’s attempt to rekindle their close friendship by his crashing her very important business trip. It makes for surprises aplenty, with each scene keeping the audience on their toes in this smart, sensitive and slapstick film.


The Red Turtle would be the perfect recommendation to someone who wants to meditate. It is a soothing, French/Japanese fable, that has zero dialogue (except for some grunts and groans), following the life of a man whose been washed ashore on an island. It sounds simple, but the story that it tells still delivers an emotional and spiritual impact that touches our souls. Because it is lacking in conversations, the audience is forced to absorb the texture of the animation and soak in the sounds of whooshing water. It accumulates to The Red Turtle blossoming into a beautiful film that blends mystery and magic.


I have been watching Keanu Reeves kick ass and take names since I was a teenager. From his time as a “bogus dude” in Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, to telling Dennis Hopper “pop quiz hot shot!” in Speed, and putting his stamp on the sci-fi genre as The Matrix warrior Neo, needless to say, I’ve been thoroughly entertained. In his most recent work, John Wick: Chapter 2, Reeves succeeds again, raising the bar after the surprise hit of 2014’s first installment- John Wick. In his well tailored suit, he continues to remind me, and audiences, how much of an action star he is. After all, this is a master at the art of hand to hand combat and knows how to make a character his own.



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