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  • Gone Girl 2014

    ★★★★ Watched 03 Oct, 2014

    Formally exceptional, as one would expect from Fincher these days, and there's enough going on here to dig its fingernails in you as you ride the roller coaster. Fincher has always been fascinated with pulp, which is fine, and he's a master of the form, but I feel like his best works (ZODIAC and THE SOCIAL NETWORK, which are his movies based on real life stories) are able to at least ground the pulpier aspects a bit more. Is that what I want? A more grounded Fincher? Sure, why not.

  • The Guest 2014

    ★★★★ Watched 20 Sep, 2014

    When I was young, my dad would show me movies like TAXI DRIVER, THE SUBSTITUTE, the Parris Island sequence of FULL METAL JACKET, RAMBO, etc., seemingly ignorant of everything but the male power fantasy. What this movie understands is why movies like THE BOONDOCK SAINTS and SCARFACE are so appealing for all the wrong reasons, and guiltlessly exploits it. Knowing that the rottenness at the core of the male power fantasy has been explored well enough, thank you very much,…

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  • High and Low 1963

    ★★★★★ Watched 12 Nov, 2013

    Stunning. This might be a 10 on another viewing just because it is so knotty and there’s no way I caught everything that is wonderful about this film. But I caught a lot. Best blocking of any film ever? Probably. Best sunglasses? Definitely. This is a goddam motion picture, folks. And please, my God, anyone who is planning to make a movie that makes use of space (every movie ever), please study how this film makes sure that we know exactly where everyone is in relation to everyone else at all times. Study that tailing scene in the streets! Study it!

  • Drug War 2013

    ★★★★½ Watched 08 Feb, 2014

    My first Johnnie To and I'm very, very impressed. A supremely tightly constructed thriller (possibly one of the tightest I've ever seen) which wastes not a single breath in setting up the pieces and putting them at odds with each other. It's so ruthlessly efficient that it's easy to look over the intelligence that's going on underneath, too, all culminating in a brutal, visceral final shootout that not only is an exercise in cleanly shot, thrilling action but a true…