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  • The Color Purple 1985

    ★★★ Watched 18 Apr, 2014

    As is typical for me of Spielberg's more serious films, this has a few very powerful moments sandwiched in between a lot of *very* melodramatic ones. Whoopi and Oprah are both excellent, primarily thanks to the more subdued nature of their performances, which balances out the over-the-top drama of the people around them. When they weren't not at the center of the action, though, I felt like the melodrama overwhelmed the film and made it difficult for me to connect…

  • Beaches 1988

    ★★ Watched 17 Apr, 2014

    Meh, this was OK. I thought the movie did a decent job of showing the span of these women's lives, but it's somewhat lacking when it comes to showing their actual friendship in action. About a third of their interaction is them fighting, and most of the rest of the movie is the two of them doing their own thing. I just kept thinking to myself, "Why are they still friends, much less working so hard to stay that way?"…

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  • The Wolf of Wall Street 2013

    ★★★★ Watched 14 Apr, 2014

    The movie does get a little long, but for the most part, this is a wildly entertaining ride. Leonardo DiCaprio and Jonah Hill play beautifully off each other, creating a very funny dynamic that carries the rest of the movie. The use of not only voiceover narration but direct-to-the-camera narration as well perfectly fits the tone of the entire movie, making us feel like we are complicit in Jordan's schemes. And, honestly, it does make it hard not to like…

  • Inside Llewyn Davis 2013

    ★★★ Watched 05 Apr, 2014 3

    Like so many movies by the Coens, I'm not exactly sure what to make of this. I like individual moments, but I'm not certain I can say it hangs together as a whole. My least favorite thing about the Coens has always been their ending choices, which frequently feel like they just abruptly stopped making the movie, rather than actually *ending* their story. That is definitely the case here, and I am once again left unsatisfied and a little puzzled…