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  • Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer

    Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer

    ★★★½

    A History of Horror: Serial Killer

    Hard to put a little cute orange heart on this particular movie.

    It's funny how horror operates socially. Even though the genre is mainstream now in a way it never was before 1970, I still want it to function as an outlaw genre. The residual fringe-ness associated with it from long years of trafficking in the taboo is part of what I love about it. I both want other people to share my love…

  • Await Further Instructions

    Await Further Instructions

    ★★★

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

    Scary Movies.

    There are weapons that are simply thoughts, attitudes, prejudices — to be found only in the minds of men. For the record, prejudices can kill — and suspicion can destroy — and a thoughtless frightened search for a scapegoat has a fallout all of its own — for the children — and the children yet unborn. And the pity of it is — that these things cannot be confined — to the Twilight Zone.

    Rod Serling's 1960 episode…

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  • Collateral

    Collateral

    ★★★★★

    Subgenres of the thriller genre:

    1. the thriller as art film, where the artist cannot stoop to actually thrilling his audience

    2. the thriller as philosophical rubbernecking, where we are invited to meditate upon the nature of evil — as severed heads roll our way

    3. the thriller as pastiche of esoteric pop-culture references

    4. the redundant thriller, either a remake of a good thriller or adaptation of a good novel, or both

    My highest praise of Collateral is that…

  • Mission: Impossible - Fallout

    Mission: Impossible - Fallout

    ★★★★½

    Saw at Union Square, alone... yet not alone, because it's a movie that forcibly conscripts the audience into a collective experience of awe at the stunts and shenanigans and relentless escalation of suspense at every opportunity. I spent a decent portion of the movie with my hands on my head, partly poised to cover my face in dismay if necessary, partly trying to keep my skull from flying apart with the tension.

    The guy next to me was on a…