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  • Creed

    Creed 2015

    ★★★★★ Rewatched 27 Nov, 2015 2

    Some things that I noticed the first time but became even sharper ona rewatch:

    -the close-up of the child Adonis's curled fist slackening when Mary-Ann offers him a home but, more importantly, a chance to learn about his father
    -Stallone fighting back tears with a sharp, ragged breath that is utterly devastating
    -the general quality of Alberti's cinematography in reflecting the kind of washed out palette of any large city (esp. its poorer, neglected areas) without resorting to the kind…

  • Creed

    Creed 2015

    ★★★★★ Watched 23 Nov, 2015 1

    This is a great film. I reviewed it here:

  • Green Snake

    Green Snake 1993

    ★★★★★ Watched 10 Jun, 2015

    Tsui Hark's belligerent wuxia film savagely attacks the conservative conventions of the genre, portraying the kung fu master monk who roams the countryside banishing animal spirits not as the hero but the unambiguous villain who hides his sexual repression behind a veil of religious purity. Rounding out the violent Buddhist contrasts is the feckless Taoist, who also wants spirits vanquished but can do nothing but flail around impotently. The film's social critique broadens when two snake spirits take the form…

  • Tenebre

    Tenebre 1982

    ★★★★★ Watched 28 Oct, 2014

    Double-feature of this and IN THE MOUTH OF MADNESS, on repeat until you just go insane.

  • Love and Death

    Love and Death 1975

    ★★★★★ Watched 23 Oct, 2014

    One of the few Woody Allen films to fully reconcile his sardonic wit with his overriding desire to be seen as a smart, serious person, actively mocking his own literary pretensions before they took over his films.

  • The Puppetmaster

    The Puppetmaster 1993

    ★★★★★ Watched 06 Oct, 2014

    Urge to write something big on Hou gradually shifting from "want" to "need."

  • *Corpus Callosum

    *Corpus Callosum 2002

    ★★★★★ Watched 07 Oct, 2014

    One of the best films of the millennium, a wry digital experiment that is revealed (in a better twist than any recent mainstream movie contains) to be a comment on how digital filmmaking will change Hollywood, with the real work now done by programmers in Toronto offices.

  • Listen Up Philip
  • Public Enemies

    Public Enemies 2009

    ★★★★★ Rewatched 26 Sep, 2014

    I've gone from disliking this film to loving it to now finding it one of the best of the last decade. A crime movie that foregrounds the allure of iconic criminals while thoroughly countering it with a brutal vision of single-minded crooks and equally simple cops. (In an amusing twist, it is the nascent FBI that is seen as far more nefarious by the public at large in this movie, distrustful of a Depression-era government body formed, in part, to…

  • Eraserhead

    Eraserhead 1977

    ★★★★★ Rewatched 20 Sep, 2014

    A perfectly calibrated film. The length of time it took to assemble the full thing can be felt only in how carefully ordered everything is, how exacting the sound design. It may have had lasting cult popularity because it's "weird," but I think it held on for how evocative it is, how well it nails that sense of being trapped by automation and shrieking metal and the feeling that a city is really an alien planet capable of corrupting our very DNA. Lynch wouldn't make a better movie until FWWM.

  • The Texas Chain Saw Massacre

    The Texas Chain Saw Massacre 1974

    ★★★★★ Watched 19 Sep, 2014

    One of the few canonical classics of New Hollywood I think still deserves its full rep. Such a multivalent film, and also one of the few horror movies to keep me in total terror the whole time without resorting to cheap tricks.

  • Manhunter

    Manhunter 1986

    ★★★★★ Rewatched 18 Sep, 2014

    MANHUNTER is not Michael Mann's best film, but that does not preclude it from being one of the best American genre films of all time. Its mixture of exacting, over-researched realism and pure, unabashed style may have nominally inspired an entire generation of TV shows that have made bank for CBS, but nothing in CSI's invasive forensic illustrations (copped from THREE KINGS more than this) produces the same effect of total identification with its ostensibly chilly, distant characters.

    Mann explores…