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  • Young Winston

    Young Winston 1972

    ★★★★½ Watched 27 Mar, 2015

    I haven't read the book it's based on so I can't say anything about its authenticity, but as a biopictorial narrative it's thoroughly engaging on all fronts (Bancroft's slight overacting notwithstanding), providing Churchill's point of view as well as the broader context he grew up in. The film's major strength is that it rather than depicting the man as a untouchable heroic icon, portrays him very much like a human being, struggling and with vulnerabilities.

  • Exorcist II: The Heretic

    Exorcist II: The Heretic 1977

    ★★★ Watched 25 Feb, 2015

    Somewhat unfairly maligned Exorcist II: The Heretic is more interested in examining the concept of hypnosis than possession. It's not really a horror film, in any case not a scary one, and it's pretty far from great. Linda "fantastic as a demon, horrible as anything else" Blair's lack of talent causes it to at times turn into a heavily campy affair. But it has good qualities too -- for instance, even though it makes the film harder to follow, I…

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  • The Royal Tenenbaums

    The Royal Tenenbaums 2001

    ★★★★★ Rewatched 14 Jan, 2013 4

    Wes Anderson's films are known primarily as Wes Anderson films, which is not very surprising seeing as he has developed his very own style, consisting of symmetrical colorful photography/art direction infused with sweet sounding pop songs, a combination that it takes mere seconds to recognize as distinctly andersonsonian. When looking back it's clear though that it was Anderson and Owen Wilson as a pair that had something really special going in the late 90s and early 00s. It was their…

  • Black Swan

    Black Swan 2010

    ★★★★ Watched 25 Dec, 2010 4

    What begins as a classic fairy tale with rivalry between noble, overly sensitive ballerina and a free-spirited dancing partner, guilt-inducing mother and a character that resembles an evil queen with cruel intentions (Cassel's dirty minded instructor), derails via the more mature themes of personality disorder, sexuality and mutation, slowly and steadily into a beautifully controlled, complex mess. Neither Portman nor Aronofsky has ever been better.