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  • La La Land

    La La Land

    ★★★★★

    La La Land was at the top of my most anticipated films of 2016 (never mind not seeing it until January 2017) since I first heard of it months ago. I am so happy that it was fully able to live up to my high, high expectations. It's kind of funny, because up until about four years ago, I wasn't much of a fan of (any) musicals. Then I delved into classic Hollywood musicals, and while most full movie musicals…

  • Arrival

    Arrival

    ★★★★

    Easily my favorite of Denis Villeneuve's movies so far. I thought with each of his movies that he's very talented, but all of them left me feeling there was something missing (Rian Johnson had made me feel that way until Looper, I guess just make a science fiction film and you've got me), but Arrival got to me completely. The "twist" at the end felt earned. Amy Adams is great and carried the movie on her capable shoulders. The "alien…

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  • Autumn Sonata

    Autumn Sonata

    ★★★★★

    A great, great film. Meryl Streep in Sophie's Choice is my pick for the best all-time performance by an actress, but I think now Ingrid Bergman and Liv Ullmann in Autumn Sonata are my picks for the 2nd and 3rd best. Their performances are astounding. The Bergman films I've seen so far all pretty much have great female performances, but in Autumn Sonata (Ingrid) Bergman and Ullmann bring a level of talent and emotional realism to the performances that just…

  • Sin City: A Dame to Kill For

    Sin City: A Dame to Kill For

    ★★★

    A lesser effort from what I thought was his groundbreaking Sin City, the almost 10 years in between dulls Sin City 2's possible impact. Doesn't contain the better material of the original. Also not as visually interesting, though some shots still were able to stand out. Rodriguez doesn't use color as well as in the original. Bruce Willis' presence in the movie is a mistake, I think; it just feels too tacked on and doesn't match the tone of the…