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  • Fort Tilden

    Fort Tilden 2014

    ★★★★½ Watched 30 Jul, 2015

    Small-scale yet scathing, this story of a day in the life of two young Williamsburg women trying to get to the beach is a merciless poke in the eye of Brooklyn bohemia, filled with sharply-drawn characters, dialogue that’s just a half-spin towards satire (“This place is awesome, it’s such a piece of shit”) and spot-on touches (part of getting their apartment “sex-ready” is leaving out a copy of 'Infinite Jest'). Writer/directors Bliss and Rogers have a knack for brutally passive-aggressive…

  • People, Places, Things

    People, Places, Things 2015

    ★★★½ Watched 30 Jul, 2015

    Clement is warmly charismatic as an Everyman dad who discovers his wife (Allynne) is having an affair—at their twin girls’ fifth birthday party, no less. A year later, he still can’t shake the break-up, but when a student (Williams, winning) sets him up with her mom (the wonderful Hall), things start looking up. Though battling occasional bouts of twee—I mean, y’know, he’s a graphic novelist—and burdened by the predictable third-act entanglements, 'People' glides on the skill of its performers. Hall…

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  • Under the Skin

    Under the Skin 2013

    ★★★★ Watched 21 Mar, 2014

    A beautiful, bizarre, and occasionally troubling bit of abstract art-house sci-fi in the Beyond the Black Rainbow vein from director Jonathan Glazer (Sexy Beast, Birth). Scarlett Johansson (who appears in just about every frame) plays a well-disguised alien creature who picks up men and devours them; some have dismissed the picture as an indie riff on Species, but if the narrative is derivative and a tad monotonous, there’s something intoxicating about the fluidity of Glazer’s striking images and the mood he manages to sustain throughout the peculiar tale.

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  • The Fisher King

    The Fisher King 1991

    ★★★★★ Rewatched 20 Jun, 2015

    After years of critical kudos and studio battles, Terry Gilliam finally scored a mainstream hit with this 1991 Robin Williams/Jeff Bridges vehicle — and it’s still a little surprising that he managed to make such a downright odd movie within that system, at that moment. His over-caffeinated style doesn’t always mesh with the subtleties of Richard LaGravenese’s excellent (Oscar-nominated) screenplay, but he does bring out an operatic lyricism that works, while miraculously, gingerly navigating from tragedy to buddy comedy to…