RSS feed for Trent
  • Hell or High Water

    Hell or High Water 2016

    ★★★★ Watched 25 Aug, 2016

    I went into Hell or High Water expecting strong No Country for Old Men & True Detective vibes. While those harsh tones are there, it unexpectedly oscillates towards levity and casual charm on multiple fronts. It’s taken me a while to unpack whether or not I think that’s a good thing…

    On one hand you have the sun-dried West Texas landscape* and beautifully bleak, droning soundtrack composed by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis (See also The Assassination of Jesse James by…

  • Imperium

    Imperium 2016

    ★★★ Watched 21 Aug, 2016 2

    Imperium is thriller-lite… neither diving too deep into the psychological aspects of being undercover nor the inner-workings of radical white supremacist groups.

    But I still liked it—probably because I’m continually delighted to witness Daniel Radcliffe’s evolution. He does a fine job here—despite being occasionally stretched to remain intimidating while going toe to toe with actors like the 6′ 5″ Chris Sullivan. I have no idea, but I like to think that growing up around amazing talents like Gambon, Smith, Harris, and Rickman informed the trajectory he’s on now.

  • Mulholland Drive

    Mulholland Drive 2001

    ★★★★½ Watched 15 Aug, 2016

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  • Amadeus

    Amadeus 1984

    ★★★★★ Watched 14 Aug, 2016

    My first viewing—parents wouldn't let me rent it as a child (probably because boobs)—but I still vividly remember the mystical VHS box art. Next to Raiders, it was the most interesting and evocative art in the entire store. And that’s saying something because they also had Ghoulies.

  • Suicide Squad

    Suicide Squad 2016

    ★½ Watched 06 Aug, 2016

    Suicide Squad is 20 trailers interspersed with misplaced flashback sequences that fail to compensate for the lack of a story, vision, or theme.

    Boom! We’re doing something! Cue the Black Sabbath, AC/DC, White Stripes, Creedence, etc. song—then show everybody walking together in slow motion. Repeat. Over. And over.

    I suppose this is what you get for hiring a trailer house to edit your film (HT Tony Zhou)…

    So while Ayer pursued his original vision, Warners set about working on a…

  • Jason Bourne

    Jason Bourne 2016

    ★★½ Watched 02 Aug, 2016 1

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    Yo dawg, I heard u like shaky cam action…

    Jason Bourne is a forced origin story to the origin story that’s already unfolded in the earlier 3 films. 

    Characters’ motivations are muddy, and it seems like there are 3 stories—each told about ⅓ of the way through:

    1) Whoa, what’s Nicky Parsons up to? She’s a badass now. She should be more central to the plot. And who the hell is Christian Dassault? I bet he has a really interesting…

  • Stoker

    Stoker 2013

    ★★★½ Watched 31 Jul, 2016

    If you’re looking for a story about what happens when a nefarious long-lost family member returns, start with Hitchcock’s Shadow of a Doubt. Joseph Cotten is fantastic in it.

    Not that Matthew Goode isn’t great in Stoker—everything (including Chan-wook Park’s direction) feels solid. Some of the detail in the scene blocking (especially with the staircase) reminds me of Hitchcock himself.

    Shots are accentuated by the positioning and almost artificially perfect posture of the characters. After all, isn’t that what these…

  • Star Wars

    Star Wars 1977

    ★★★★★ Rewatched 31 Jul, 2016

    My second-born’s first viewing 🎉

  • Sing Street

    Sing Street 2016

    ★★★★★ Watched 26 Jul, 2016

    Movies that make my face tired from stupidly beaming at the screen get an automatic 5 stars.

  • Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice

    Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice 2016

    ★★★★ Watched 23 Jul, 2016 1

    I’m as surprised as you are. I kept waiting for the moment where I was filled with regret for watching something so poorly reviewed, but it never came.

    I was exhausted by Man of Steel. The only thing I could process towards the end of my first and only viewing was that somewhere along the way something happened and a shit ton of glass was broken.

    I saw that climactic fight the same way Bruce Wayne does in BvS. While…

  • Star Trek Beyond

    Star Trek Beyond 2016

    ★★★ Watched 22 Jul, 2016 2

    Star Trek Beyond has everything I’ve loved about the reboot—punchy one-liners, a charismatic cast, and some (maybe too many) visually spectacular action sequences. The plot payoff at the end falls pretty flat though. I think the villain needed more development & screen time—anything to show glimpses of motive earlier on. I had no idea what I was supposed to care about & engage with until it was over.

    Next time: a little bit more talk, a little bit less action

  • The Dark Knight

    The Dark Knight 2008

    ★★★½ Watched 20 Jul, 2016

    It probably goes without saying that Heath Ledger’s performance is astounding, and all my rewatches are so I can see more of it.

    But despite how stylish and epic the Nolan Batman movies are, I’ve always had a hard time staying engaged with the 2nd and 3rd installments. I used to blame plot points/holes alone, until I found this extremely thorough dissection of the car chase sequence:

    Sure, most people probably wouldn’t be able to articulate and itemize those…