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  • Dr. No

    Dr. No

    ★★★★

    Imagine DR.NO wasn't a success and this was the only James Bond movie we had. How would we receive it now? Would we laud it all the more for being such a thrilling pulp-comic adventure? I could see it being a cult sensation, out of circulation, but taped off cable; old prints shown as midnight movies before getting reappraised by Criterion or Kino. 

    Not sure where I'm going with this or if I even have a point. Anyway, this movie is aces.

  • Close Encounters of the Third Kind

    Close Encounters of the Third Kind

    ★★★★

    Original cut. This is Spielberg's Robert Altman picture. Beautiful immersive world created by Spielberg here, and lots of character lines intersecting at the end. Love the detail of the production design; from the spectacle of the spaceship to the warmth of the domestic spaces. There's so much here, too, to unpack about family and encounters, not just with extra-terrestrials, but with other people. Truffaut and Balaban are great. Pretty stellar stuff.

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  • The Presidio

    The Presidio

    ★★½

    Feels like this was originally supposed to be a pilot for a show about a military cop and civilian cop teamin' up. But somewhere it became a feature film, and to pad it out to 90 minutes screenwriter Larry Ferguson added a subplot about the the civilian cop dating the the military cop's daughter.

    It all amounts to something that's almost passable. Somehow they got Sean Connery as the military cop and Meg Ryan as his daughter. Mark Harmon is…

  • Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice

    Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice

    ★★★

    Confused as it is ambitious, (the terribly-titled) BATMAN V SUPERMAN: DAWN OF JUSTICE is such a jam-packed mixed grab bag of ideas and images I find it hard not love on that level alone. True, there are huge lapses in logic, leaps to ridiculous conclusions and at least one groan-inducing plot point that would otherwise sink a film that didn't look this good. Say what you will about Snyder, he's a mythic image-maker. Yeah, it makes no sense for Superman…