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  • Wings

    Wings 1927

    ★★★★ Added

    The first Academy Award winner for Best Picture, "Wings" is definitely a spectacle and actually an entertaining movie today. The very first special effects shot was kinda lame, but by the time the planes really get in the air, it's spectacular. Lots of great flying footage that is still exciting nearly eighty years later. It must have been mind blowing to audiences back in the day.

    The camera is often at the nose of the plane looking back on the…

  • Starry Eyes

    Starry Eyes 2014

    ★★★★ Added

    Fairly slow build up with a lead character that's not exactly likable, but once it finally gets going, "Starry Eyes" is a horror movie that delivers the goods in a way most bloodless studio projects don't.

    First of all, it's got the Satanic cult angle, a classic horror movie cliche surprisingly underused today. And the cult itself isn't really the focus of the film, which is cool and kind of unusual since they motivate all the events. Second, "Starry Eyes"…

  • The China Syndrome

    The China Syndrome 1979

    ★★★½ Added

    This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    Overall a very good thriller. It's a bit overly self-serious and dated now, but the opening scenes set up the story very well and there's an effective atmosphere of suspense built up quickly and sustained throughout. I really liked the lack of music.

    I have to say, after semi-careful thought, it's hard for me to buy the ending. It seems to me that Jack Lemmon's character could not simultaneously be right about his predictions and for everything to be okay…

  • Mary and Max

    Mary and Max 2009

    ★★★★★ Added

    Funny, sad, creative, heartwarming, sentimental, irreverent, moving, touching... Just a few words of the many that could describe this fantastic, gentle story of a pen pal friendship. The extreme cartoonish style of the characters is offset by their fragile and familiar humanity. The people and their world they inhabit is completely artificial, but filled with so much detail and unique character that they seem real and believable.

    The only flaws are that a majority of the story is told in…

  • Life Itself

    Life Itself 2014

    Added

    Painful and sad. About as much fun as watching a loved one deteriorate and die. Less a celebration of a life than a chronicle of death. I had to force myself to watch it at times, and you couldn't pay me to see it again.

    I love Roger Ebert. I have his books literally within arm's reach of me right now. As a writer, he had a unique gift of communicating directly to the reader, as intimate as a note…

  • The Voices

    The Voices 2014

    ★★★★ Added

    Probably not for everyone, but surprisingly entertaining. I got a really bad vibe early on, as the film initially seemed like it was going to be a ultra quirky Sundance indie meets "Dexter" type movie, which I probably would have found insufferable. I like dark comedies, but mining schizophrenia for laughs is pretty dicey territory, because it's ultimately a very real and sad affliction that many people have to deal with every day and it's anything but funny. It's hard…

  • The Town that Dreaded Sundown

    The Town that Dreaded Sundown 2014

    ★★ Added

    It was interesting how they incorporated the original film into the story line of this one. While so many remakes/reboots today seem to toss out a lot of what made the first story popular with fans (I'm looking at you, Texas Chainsaw Massacre), TTTDS 2014 plays as a loving tribute, even showing clips from the original film at regular intervals.

    Other than that, it's a pretty crappy movie. Lousy acting, a killer with no personality or even sense of presence,…

  • Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit

    Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit 2014

    ★½ Added

    Chris Pine was okay, and Kenneth Branagh's acting was decent enough too, but the whole movie is a dull mess. It feels like a very weak copy of the Jason Bourne movies, and since I'm not a fan of those in the first place, "Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit" felt especially annoying and unnecessary.

    Speaking of annoying, I really disliked Ryan's girlfriend. Both the character and the actress playing her were completely unlikable. It's not a good sign that at one…

  • Predestination

    Predestination 2014

    ★★★★ Added

    The pacing and structure is definitely weird, as the first act is nearly an hour long, and the final two acts rush by at blinding speed averaging about twenty minutes each. But my patience was rewarded as everything finally ties together at the end and the secrets are revealed.

    Sure, some people will be able to guess some of the twists simply by the process of elimination, and at times the plot a little confusing and unbelievable, but I think…

  • Frank

    Frank 2014

    ★★★ Added

    The last fifteen minutes or so was a welcome relief from the aggressive quirkiness of the rest of the film. The humor was dropped, and the film finally took a look at its characters with a realistic eye. It was surprisingly affecting and effective. There are still some nice moments sprinkled about the first 4/5ths of the movie. It will be more appealing to aspiring songwriters, avant garde musicians, and those who enjoy quirky independent films. Other audiences might be left a bit unimpressed or even a little put off.

  • Whiplash

    Whiplash 2013

    ★★★★½ Added

    Excellent film. I was a little worried it would become "misery porn." Who wants to spend a full movie watching a dictatorial teacher attacking his helpless students? Not me. But, any abusive scenes are actually fairly short and few in number, and the abuse doesn't seem too outrageous or unrealistic.

    The story is solid and progresses in interesting ways all the way to the end. I liked the way the characters were well rounded. Student Andrew Nieman (Miles Teller) isn't…

  • Fury

    Fury 2014

    ★★★½ Added

    Two or three cheesy "war movie moments" here and there, but overall a very solid, entertaining movie. Nice pacing, excellent production value, and a good cast as well. The geography of the final climactic battle wasn't as well portrayed as the earlier battles, but admittedly the battle was at night and didn't detract from the film significantly. I'm so glad that "Fury" didn't feature shakycam and quick edits. They're bane of my existence, especially in action and war movies. The camera shakes because of the explosions, of course, but it's not the endless handheld camera that I was dreading.