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  • Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

    Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

    ★★★★

    Fantastic chamber piece. Theatrical without being stagey. Makes an excellent use of space with immersive sets and costume design by legend Ann Roth. Andrew Mondshein's editing, in conjunction with the snappy dialogue, keeps at a fresh & bumping rhythm a narrative that in different hands might've been prosaic. The performances are off the charts.

  • Ammonite

    Ammonite

    ★★

    Having a torrid lesbian affair would cure anyone's depression but Francis Lee made mine 10 times worse. I'm feeling very attacked.

    The gritty, muddy realism he brought to his debut translates atrociously to the mid-19th century. There's no room for romance or even any kind of real emotional spark in a film seemingly so dedicated to reinforcing the unpleasantness and coldness of the characters' lives through deliberate choices. The sound mix is a key example of this. The sound in…

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  • The Social Dilemma

    The Social Dilemma

    ★★½

    Cut out the goofy dramatizations and you'd have a pretty solid 45-minute documentary, but as this stands, the film is at odds with itself. On one hand coherently documenting the ills of this screen-obsessed world we live in and on the other filtering all its own arguments into what is essentially the longest and cheesiest PSA you've ever seen.

  • Jojo Rabbit

    Jojo Rabbit

    ★★

    Whimsical fascism and coming of age crushes. Satire my pale caucasian ass, this is just a Life Is Beatiful reskin for everyone too young to remember how shit that movie was. The "all you need is love" theming of Waititi's syrupy bipolar universe in which Nazi genocide exists concurrently with childish fancy and Stephen King bullies is one that I can't imagine taking seriously without leaving my brain (and any notion of historical context) at the door, and essentially amounts…