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  • Ring

    Ring 1998

    ★★★ Watched 14 Apr, 2015

    This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    [mid/pro/C/C+]
    Don't mind the convoluted rating. Ringu is so domestic and placid in its admittedly tense and competently executed hour-plus buildup as to seem, as my professor put it, “almost too quotidian.” It’s nifty genre craftsmanship in my eyes, full stop, with little substantive meaning or soulfulness outside its spatial coherence and mature, sober camerawork. Except perhaps in the disease-passing ending's assertion of this as a crumbling familial unit narrative that parallels its home country's social turbulence in the nuclear household (e.g. Kurosawa, Tokyo Sonata), a thought I gained from my class's discussion. Just barely distinctive overall.

  • About Elly

    About Elly 2009

    ★★★★ Watched 14 Apr, 2015

    [PRO/B/B+]

    Rather than overplay how far-reaching the implications of the film’s events and morally-contemplative conversations are, Farhadi’s film is instead perfectly scaled to its subject matter. A small event and a tiny miscalculation have grave, impactful consequences in Farhadi’s world, and because the events of the film are contained to the villa and its immediate topographical surroundings, we see the rippling, cataclysmic effects of About Elly's narrative reverberate between characters and within the hampered consciences of individuals.

    Really quite liked this a lot. And let me just say: some fucking beautiful 35mm. More at The Miscellany News here.

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  • Whiplash

    Whiplash 2014

    ★½ Watched 15 Oct, 2014

    [CON/D]
    An ugly-in-spirit, clumsily styled (ed. the swivel reaction pans to Teller's face are atrocious) faux Social Network. Upsettingly celebrates antagonism and verbal violence as reported. J.K. Simmons's performance is terrible and Teller is too smothered by Damien Chazelle's pop psychologizing to be able to make an impression.
    [Tweet] [II]

    Chazelle's amateurish world is so limited in its artificial scope, beginning and ending within the unexplored confines of his pat human experience ambitions; he is prone to arrive at an…

  • Clouds of Sils Maria

    Clouds of Sils Maria 2014

    ★★★½ Watched 07 Apr, 2015

    [pro/B]
    I reviewed this newest, characteristically fascinating Assayas film for The Miscellany News here, but I'm honestly unsatisfied with their edit, rushed as it was by my late submission of the piece. I do however wish to highlight two bits of the review:

    —This thought is sort of spliced in the final piece, but it's important to emphasize here how subtly tied Maria and Val's consciousnesses are to Assayas's camera and editing; he dissolves, fades, and pans in the directions…