Brett Blake

Writer and movie buff.

Co-host of LOOKING TO SCORE: A MOVIE SCORE PODCAST on Spotify and a variety of other venues.

Favorite films

  • The Godfather
  • Jaws
  • The Exorcist
  • Raiders of the Lost Ark

Recent activity

All
  • The Ghost and the Darkness

    ★★★½

  • The Innocents

    ★★★½

  • The Found Footage Phenomenon

    ★★★½

  • Goldfinger

    ★★★★

Recent reviews

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  • The Ghost and the Darkness

    The Ghost and the Darkness

    ★★★½

    Underrated adventure-horror fare from the 1990s. Val Kilmer’s accent is on the questionable side, but other than that, he gives a fine “leading man” performance, while Michael Douglas adds some quirky and memorable touches. The lion attacks are visceral and frightening, and director Stephen Hopkins stages some suitably tense sequences throughout. And Jerry Goldsmith’s powerful score is absolutely tremendous, bringing equal parts heroism and terror to the proceedings. This is apparently not a picture where historical accuracy was the primary motivator, but strictly as a period “when nature attacks” thriller, it works.

  • The Innocents

    The Innocents

    ★★★½

    Pervasively unsettling. Descended from a long line of “frightening children” films, this presents kids with a capacity for casual cruelty and makes that a central point of discomfort for the audience. Like some of the great Stephen King stories that focus on young people with unusual and remarkable abilities, this film has empathy for the experiences of these characters, yet it also understands the danger posed by power in the hands of the irresponsible, and presents that in such a…

Popular reviews

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  • Us

    Us

    ★★★★

    Writer/director Jordan Peele is now two for two... though - while a more impressively-directed venture - US does end up falling a couple of notches below GET OUT on the writing front.

    Peele’s direction here is absolutely first rate, with literally numerous sequences of suspense that are impressively, sharply staged, and his handling of the primary actors is terrific. He gets great performances from all involved (Winston Duke in “goofball dad” mode is a total delight), but this really is…

  • Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness

    Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness

    ★★★★

    What a delight!

    It’s a wonderful surprise to see how much of Sam Raimi’s visual and tonal signature can be felt running underneath all this, and as a longtime fan of his work, that’s so refreshing. Marvel really did let him take the horror stuff much further than anybody should have expected, and it’s a fantastic thing to see him playing with that kind of iconography again. Ditto for how he visualizes sorcery and magic.

    On a storytelling level, the…