Favorite films

  • Angel
  • French Cancan
  • How Green Was My Valley
  • In This Life's Body

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  • Journey to Italy

    ★★★★★

  • Drag Me to Hell

    ★★★½

  • The Batman

    ★★½

  • Young Frankenstein

    ★★★½

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  • Journey to Italy

    Journey to Italy

    ★★★★★

    For all his ‘modernist’ credentials, Rossellini has a perfect understanding of classical modes, and he puts George Sanders in particular to better use than anybody else. 

    Sanders’ trademark stuffiness injects a level of humour to the sense of detachment and ennui. In general, his experiences of alienation are played lighter than Bergman’s voyage through artefacts and ruins. All this makes the gut punch of the lady of the night’s speech to Sanders all the more potent. 

    Brother Renzo’s score sounds…

  • Drag Me to Hell

    Drag Me to Hell

    ★★★½

    Tremendous fun, Raimi manages to inject just the right mix of crushing dread and soaring wit. The amount and variety of bodily fluid that Lohman is subjected to has the wonderful feel of a recurring sitcom bit.

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  • Little Women

    Little Women

    ★★

    It feels so harsh to speak ill of something that is so well intentioned and which will no doubt bring so much joy to people, but I found this thing to be totally mediocre.

    I still haven’t read the novel, and my only prior experience of this story comes from Gillian Armstrong’s film version, which I know a lot of fans of the book (my mother included) have issues with. 

    I find Armstrong’s film on its own terms to be magnificent,…

  • Zeros and Ones

    Zeros and Ones

    ★★★★

    A distillation of everything that makes up paranoia. This is what people have long said about somebody like Rivette, but formally Ferrara and Sean Price Williams have made something here which is the formal antithesis of Rivette’s world of paranoia.

    Disease, terrorism, torture, pursuit by military forces, betrayal and suicide bombing are all viscerally presented, and often without any need for motivation, just the concepts themselves carry the dread.

    But, as with a lot of Ferrara, the most paranoiac force…