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  • First Man

    First Man

    ★★★★

    First Man is an exciting new type of movie from Chazelle. His take on the bio-drama takes several tropes that have been popularized by the genre in recent years and reinvigorates them through strong editing and sound design. More important though, is the strong theme of grief and how one tries to avoid acknowledging it that permeates throughout the tale. This is a more meditative film than one may expect from Chazelle and it feels like he’s experimenting mostly in…

  • Venom

    Venom

    ★★

    Venom isn’t good but it’s hard to imagine being actively mad at it. A hilarious mess, it’s never boring and keeps itself to a relatively brief runtime (outside of the hilariously long credits of course.) Hardy’s performance feels instantly iconic, impossible to tell if he’s trolling the audience or is simply committing to the comedy he thinks the movie should be. Fleischer’s direction constantly confounds on what it’s trying to convey, and the script is a generic mess with bizarre…

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  • The Nice Guys

    The Nice Guys

    ★★★★½

    The Nice Guys is ridiculously fun. There's no other way to describe it. It's a solid two hours of non-stop enjoyment, even with a couple of flaws here and there. Before talking about those issues though, let's dwell for a bit on what makes this a truly brilliant summer blockbuster - or at least, what would make it so if audiences had embraced it. Instead, it will have to be happy with being an underseen gem.

    The fun of The…

  • La La Land

    La La Land

    ★★★★★

    La La Land is a wonder. After a brilliant mainstream debut in Whiplash, Damien Chazelle has matured impressively. He directs with a precision of a orchestra conductor. His films feel like the jazz that they represent, spontaneous, energetic and pleasant. The way he stages the musical numbers never fail to make you smile, and he brilliantly constructs the film to drop out the singing again and again, just making you feel the beautiful music.

    Stone and Gosling are both marvelous…