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  • Once Upon a Time... in Hollywood

    Once Upon a Time... in Hollywood

    ★★★★½

    Like most “Film Bro” millennials, I have a complicated relationship with Tarantino. He’s the ultimate “fashionable-to-hate” filmmaker in critic circles until the moment he releases a new film and everyone adores him again (even if briefly). Every Tarantino release typically gets heralded as his new “masterpiece” - a trend that started with Inglorious Basterds. I’m not sure if Once Upon a Time in Hollywood is his masterpiece, but it was at times the most Tarantino film I’ve seen and at…

  • Climax

    Climax

    ★★★

    I feel like I love all of the Noé films that it’s unfashionable to love. Climax is an amazingly well-realized film - but it is difficult to sit through. It shines most when it lingers on its characters while they converse about day-to-day life at a dance school. The difficulty of the film isn’t necessarily a shortcoming - it’s difficult by design (a particular sequence shot almost entirely upside down nearly made me vomit). But it lacks the gleeful edge that…

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  • Godzilla: King of the Monsters

    Godzilla: King of the Monsters

    ★★★★

    Okay look - this movie is being critically panned. I get it. But I always admired Roger Ebert for his insistence on critiquing a film on its own terms - what does it set out to do? Who is its intended audience? Apparently that isn’t the general attitude. Review after review faults Godzilla: King of the Monsters for its poor characterization, absurd plot, and over-reliance on monsters. Um.... okay?

    The humans in this film serve an important function: to facilitate…

  • Pet Sematary

    Pet Sematary

    ★★

    Pet Sematary is the most disappointing film of 2019 by a wide margin. Wonderful reviews, wonderful cast, interesting directiorial pair. It has it all. 

    The problem is it never decides what it is. And when it finally makes firms decisions, it’s far too little too late. 

    *SPOILERS AHEAD*

    Full disclosure, I have an unhealthy love of Mary Lambert’s 1989 adaptation. Not because I’m a King purist, but because despite its cheesiness and overwrought performances it has a nuanced core that…