Favorite films

  • My Man Godfrey
  • The Purple Rose of Cairo
  • True Romance
  • The Hudsucker Proxy

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  • Desire

    ★★★½

  • Stolen Kisses

    ★★★★

  • Queen of Earth

    ★★★★

  • The Night of the Iguana

    ★★

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  • Hiroshima Mon Amour

    Hiroshima Mon Amour

    ★★★★★

    "Paint not the thing but the effect it produces," says Mallarmé. A one-night stand unspools trauma accumulated since 1945, a twitch of a hand is enough for a split-second memory to jab the unconsciousness like a needle. 

    Therapy time in the tea room.

    So reads Fernando F. Croce’s lovely review, summarizing plot with a lovely bow on top. Jean-Luc Godard in ‘59: I think Resnais has filmed the novel that the young French novelists are all trying to write. Sometimes you…

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  • Stolen Kisses

    Stolen Kisses

    ★★★★

    “We want a report, not a declaration of love.” Antoine Doinel isn’t good at anything. He gets fired constantly. He sleeps around, has no direction, and teeters on petty irritation & carefree obliviousness in tandem. Curious protagonist. If Stolen Kisses didn’t have such a random, offbeat plot, it’d flat-out sink. Thankfully, it’s a delight, and Truffaut’s subtly expressing a specific universal truth. Obsession will take you to interesting rooms. 

    Vincent Canby deemed the film, quote, “a movie so full of love that…

  • Queen of Earth

    Queen of Earth

    ★★★★

    I watched Altman’s Images in March and kept coming back to it in my memory over and over again during Queen of Earth. Kindred in atmosphere, sensibility, style, emphasis, etc. Lo and behold, the first interview I read after it ends, director Alex Ross Perry says, quote: “I’m now at a point where Altman’s Images is such a big film for me, but he never meant much to me before.” Always a small pleasure when that happens. Guessing the influence…

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  • The Night of the Iguana

    The Night of the Iguana

    ★★

    Can’t quite put my finger on why, but Tennessee Williams adaptations really don’t work for me. The Night of the Iguana was my 4th swing after most recently enduring the dreadful Suddenly, Last Summer (whose title I can’t utter without mimicking Elizabeth Taylor’s repeated whimpering exasperation) preceded by Cat on a Hot Tin Roof & A Streetcar Named Desire. Both fine. Collective mass appeal clearly eludes me. 

    I love Richard Burton as the lead in anything & John Huston in the director seat,…

  • Encounters at the End of the World

    Encounters at the End of the World

    ★★★★

    This is the real secret of life—to be completely engaged with what you are doing in the here and now. And instead of calling it work, realize it is play. 
    —Alan Watts

    Werner Herzog is not here to make a documentary about fluffy penguins. Encounters at the End of the World is a curious treasure, giving us a brief glimpse into a true unknown full of colorful characters & creatures we’ve never seen. Herzog is, in Ebert’s words, “a romantic wanderer,…