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  • Psycho III

    Psycho III

    ★★★★½

    Set in the aftermath of the previous film's politics. Small town America distilled into a few key members, each relating to Norman Bates in a different way: this is the most broad of the Psycho films, encapsulating every possible angle that Bates could be examined at (there are even shades of Gus Van Sant's future incarnation). There's, like, a million things going on here all at once. Perhaps most interesting of which being it's similarities to Vertigo. Not only does…

  • Psycho II

    Psycho II

    ★★★★

    This material works far better as an 80s slasher than it did as a cold late-period Hitchcock work. Norman Bates is a radically different character for the majority of the film's runtime, he becomes a figure of empathy rather than terror. Maybe this speaks to fact that the views the West has towards mental illness have been gradually becoming more progressive (even in the short period of time between 1960 and 83). In this film Norman makes every effort to…

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  • The Brown Bunny

    The Brown Bunny

    ★★★★★

    "At the time, it felt like the most important thing in the world." — Vincent Gallo

    In my first log I called the film brutal, and now in my third I think that word doesn't do the film justice: it's quite clearly the saddest film I've ever seen. Everything about the film is sad, every frame of it radiates an intense feeling of pain. As I've often described to my brother during our many conversations about the film, I think…

  • First Reformed

    First Reformed

    ★★★★★

    Modern but universal: not an adoption of transcendental style, but the 21st century response to it... few contemporary films have this strong of a grasp over the geometry of composition, the coldness being heightened through the use of digital. Despair as the natural result of the moral/political pendulum of extremism of the modern West, but at what point, if ever, does hope regain control?: like the best films of Renoir and Ford, this is a film of contradictions, a film…