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  • Captain America: The Winter Soldier 2014

    ★★★★ Watched 09 Apr, 2014

    Boy, I seem to have boxed myself into a corner by being so generous to the Thor movies (both of them). Frankly, I think both Captain America movies blow those out of the water (probably the Iron Man films as well, in hindsight) and honestly are on par more with The Avengers than any of the other MCU installments. Personally, I think I slightly prefer the more art deco, comic book-y style and spirit of The First Avenger and the…

  • The Element of Crime 1984

    ★★★ Watched 20 Mar, 2014 3

    Stylistically, technically fantastic (the sepia look is both dreamily hypnotic and unendingly nauseating). However, it's also thematically and narratively familiar. The rare film that acts as a remarkable, unforgettable debut while simultaneously being a baffling, strangely unsatisfying work.

  • Gloria 2013

    ★★★½ Watched 18 Mar, 2014

    A nice, if unspectacular, character study, which is perhaps a bit too limited to the scope of the character's loneliness and desire for social interaction and wanting more out of life. Much of it is good and needed in an industry that rarely cares to portray this type of character with any sort of genuine empathy, however, it all too often feels like a rough draft or cut; some scenes seem to indicate threads that ultimately don't go anywhere while the conclusion, in particular, feels too easy. Paulina García, however, is phenomenal. Worth watching for her performance alone.

  • Nymphomaniac: Vol. I 2013

    ★★★★½ Watched 16 Mar, 2014

    Well, that was certainly something. Or, in this case, half of something.

    Too late for serious thoughts and honestly want to wait for Vol. 2 anyway. Rating, naturally, is subject to change.

    However, as to Vol. 1, I was entertained, impressed and...surprised. That doesn't mean everyone will feel as I do (and they certainly won't), but it is certainly a film to be seen.

    [Biggest problem and gripe is its inelegant and arbitrary division into "two" films. Practically, that might…

  • Thief 1981

    ★★★★ Watched 15 Mar, 2014 4

    James Caan was likely never better than he is here. Sublime moments and scenes appear throughout (the diner, torching a safe, the last 20 minutes), although so do a few that feel out of place and a bit hammy (the cops in particular). Liked it even more as it progressed until a concluding act that made me fall in love with it. If you can't have it all, then you might as well light a match and watch the world burn. An absolutely massive debut and criminally underrated work, although hopefully the new Criterion edition will shine a light.

  • American Hustle 2013

    ★★ Watched 14 Jan, 2014 2

    You all have been hoodwinked by a plethora of con men, both fictional and real. That's the only explanation I can come up with.

    What a mess.

  • The Wolf of Wall Street 2013

    ★★★★½ Watched 06 Jan, 2014

    3 things I immediately take from THE WOLF OF WALL STREET:

    1.) There is perhaps more movie bang-for-the-buck in this than any other movie I've seen in the last year. There's just so much movie here, it's bursting at the seams.

    2.) The only way WOLF promotes or glorifies Jordan Belfort and what goes on in the film is if you find any or all of it appealing. There is so much drug use, I gagged a bit towards the…

  • 47 Ronin 2013

    ★½ Watched 02 Jan, 2014

    Oh man...well, I suppose it's a moral victory (maybe? maybe not?) that this isn't completely unwatchable. Instead, it's just really, really dull. Oh and messy. Messy and misguided.

    The nicest thing I could say about it, is that if you turn your brain completely off, you might not totally hate it.

    If you're brain is working and you actually think about this movie and some of the alterations and implications of this misguided endeavor (the most interesting pieces will inevitably…

  • Much Ado About Nothing 2012

    ★★★ Watched 20 Dec, 2013

    Amy Acker. That is all.

  • Frances Ha 2012

    ★★★★½ Watched 19 Dec, 2013

    I don't remember the last movie I saw that was perched so perilously on the edge between satisfying masterpiece and self-satisfied misfire. Yet Baumbach and Gerwig manage to keep the train on the rails and deliver a wonderful, humorous, awkward, touching ode to twenty-somethings, solipsistic dreamers, Brooklyn hipsters and the socially awkward (some might say stunted).

  • A Band Called Death 2013

    ★★★★ Watched 16 Dec, 2013

    What's in a name? Evidently...a lot more than you'd think. Especially a rather silly one like "Death".

    Love the family, love the story, love the music. The music compensates for some of the cinematic shortcomings and the whole family are fantastic even as talking heads. And man what a story.

  • Blackfish 2013

    ★★★½ Watched 16 Dec, 2013

    If, after watching Blackfish, you still want to go down to SeaWorld and watch the killer whales perform tricks like trained monkeys, you can just go fuck off.

    It's not exactly revolutionary or visually inventive filmmaking, but ultimately, it makes the case and does so fairly persuasively.