(director: Pablo Larrain; screenwriter: Steven Knight; cinematographer: Claire Mathon; editor: Sebastián Sepúlveda; music:Jonny Greenwood; cast: Kristen Stewart (Diana), Timothy Spall(Major Gregory), Sally Hawkins (Maggie), Jack Nielen(William), Freddie Spry (Harry), Jack Farthing(Charles), Stella Gonet (The Queen), Emma Darwall-Smith (Camilla Parker Bowles), Sean Harris (Darren, chef), Richard Sammel (Prince Philip), Elizabeth Berrington (Princess Anne), Lore Stefanek (Queen Mother), Amy Manson (Anne Boleyn); Runtime: 111; MPAA Rating: R; producers; Juan de Dios Larraín, Jonas Dornbach, Paul Webster, Janine Jackowski, Maren Ade: Neon; 2021-Chile/Germany/UK/USA-in English)

(director: Miguel Sapochnik; screenwriters: Craig Luck, Ivor Powell; cinematographer: Jo Willems; editor: Tim Porter; music: Gustavo Santaolalla; cast: Tom Hanks (Finch), Caleb Landry Jones (Jeff), Alexis Raben (Ina), Christopher Farrar (Jimmy), Jon Donohue  (Tyler); Runtime: 116; MPAA Rating: PG-13; producers; Jacqueline Levine, Kevin Misher, Ivor Powell, Jack Rapke, Robert Zemeckis: Apple TV +; 2021)

Bittersweet and tense sci-fi film, built around a post-apocalyptic concept.

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

The London-born Miguel Sapochnik(“Repo Men”/”Game of Thrones”) directs this bittersweet and tense sci-fi film, built around a post-apocalyptic concept. Writers Craig Luck and Ivor Powell play it as a Tom Hanks vehicle, as they tell a noble tale about a robotics engineer named Finch (Tom Hanks), his dog Goodyear; and, his home-built robot Jeff (the voice of Caleb Landry Jones), whom he humanizes to be his pet dog’s caretaker after he passes away.

The film opens with Finch stuck  in St. Louis when a weather-related catastrophe due to global warming kills off a large slice of the population. Finch is sick from radiation poison, who self-treats.

In an effort to survive the disaster, Finch and his companions head to the west coast in their RV to build a new life, while trying to outrace the storm and the seriousness of his illness while traveling to his Golden Gate Bridge destination.

Hanks is another successful solo film role, as he did before in the Cast Away (2000). His lone figure heroic character battles loneliness, despair and travail in a nightmarish future. But sentimentality engulfs the story, a story that shows off Hanks’ acting chops but just seemed like a run-of-the mill disaster road film that never got me excited.

REVIEWED ON 11/7/2021  GRADE: C+