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  • Heat

    Heat

    ★★★★½

    “Allow nothing to be in your life that you cannot walk out on in 30 seconds flat if you spot the heat around the corner.”

    Michael Mann’s Heat makes for some very bifurcated viewing. I’ll get to the accolades but first the bad news. The bad news is that Michael Mann has an infantile conception of romantic love and seemingly no understanding of women. As such, the majority of Heat’s female characters serve no dramatic purpose and are rendered both…

  • Another Thin Man

    Another Thin Man

    ★★★

    “Yeah, well he looks to me like a pool parlor dude.”

    The film’s title speaks volumes. The case is flimsy, but Powell and Loy are in good form. Asta shines. The humdrum supporting cast features an unremarkable Tom Neal, who would later achieve a measure of infamy by nearly killing Franchot Tone in a bar fight over Tone’s third wife (Barbara Payton).

    Some stray notes:
    -ASTA TRAVELS WITH FIRE HYDRANT
    -LEAVE IT TO CREEPSIE
    -SMITTY’S THIGH HOLSTER
    -ALRIGHT, YOU MADE…

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  • The Royal Tenenbaums

    The Royal Tenenbaums

    ★★★★★

    "I know I'm gonna be the bad guy on this one."

    I am not an empathy machine. In my careless way I try to be decent, but like most people I learn slowly and from painful experience. I've loved this film since I first saw it some eighteen years ago; often stray lines of droll dialogue (usually from Royal or Eli) will just pop into my mind apropos of nothing. But it wasn't until the passing of my father a…

  • Vanya on 42nd Street

    Vanya on 42nd Street

    ★★★★★

    “Here’s a perfect picture of a gradual and relentless decay.”

    Though he intended to mount a project about Marlene Dietrich, it’s fitting in a way that Vanya on 42nd Street ended up being Louis Malle’s final film. Not only does it reunite the transatlantic master with old collaborators André Gregory and Wallace Shawn, but also it provocatively straddles the line between documentary and fiction (truth and illusion) much as Malle’s entire filmography does.

    Far from a conventional adaptation film, Vanya…