• If Beale Street Could Talk

    If Beale Street Could Talk

    ★★★★½

    2018 Ranking 

    Joi McMillon and Nat Sanders' editing of this is so fascinating, that Fonny/Tish/Daniel scene and the way it goes from intensity to deflation to brief spurts of joy and then painful rumination is tremendous in the way each cut and lingering touch helps to amplify each phase. That sequence in itself would already be such a remarkable film.

    Also, Teyonah Parris is really good in this, underrated performance!

  • Quartet

    Quartet

    ★★★½

    1981 Ranking 

    Ah, the second film I've seen called Quartet starring Maggie Smith!

    James Ivory's direction for this particular kind of story may feel a bit too muted at points almost, but on the whole I quite liked it mainly for its atypical love triangle and the performances of the woman at its centre and the woman on the periphery (though Alan Bates and Anthony Higgins are both more than fine). Isabelle Adjani, in a performance that jointly shared her…

  • Bodies Bodies Bodies

    Bodies Bodies Bodies

    ★★★★

    2022 Ranking 

    Am I on a roll or do I just think every movie is good after suffering through DWD? Much to think about.

    But honestly, I wasn't really on board for this in the opening and some of the introductory scenes, the dialogue and humour just wasn't really clicking for me, but then as we started building on interactions between the characters to raise the stakes and humour levels I really started to enjoy it, to the point that…

  • Athena

    Athena

    ★★★★½

    2022 Ranking 

    Streaming on Netflix - you don't want to miss this one.

    Romain Gavras gives us the opening sequence of the year - words can't really explain, but just watch, it has to be seen to be believed. It's invigorating, haunting and brilliantly sets the stage for a furious examination of police violence and racial inequality in the French banlieu. The dynamic camerawork and atmospheric score is amplified with powerful performances - if this is indeed Sami Slimane’s first…

  • Don't Worry Darling

    Don't Worry Darling

    ★★

    2022 Ranking 

    Not going to pick on individual elements for now, but the film’s world and concept it’s going for as a whole is just so messy and half-baked. More frustrating than I expected because there are brief flashes of something more intriguing but that’s all they are, mere flashes.

    I don't really have anything positive to say because even though I don't think it's quite as awful as some have made it out to be, I also feel like…

  • Lions Love

    Lions Love

    ★★★★

    1969 Ranking 

    Surprised this one seems to be considered lesser Varda - sure, it’s all over the place and its protagonists are quite aimless in their discordant conversations but I found all of that very engaging, and a great snapshot of this particular era of late 1960s Hollywood. You can really feel, even through this whimsical tone, Varda finding a lot of insight throughout this seeming nothingness, the playfulness and hedonism of the ménage-à-trois of actors, and where the meta…

  • Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

    Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

    ★★★★

    2016 Ranking 

    Still think the characters are a bit too dispersed in the third act, which is a bit uneven, and feels like Body Rook as a character should've been more of a driving force to the narrative (they should have had him carry the final few minutes of the film by delivering the schematics in person) but overall cracking film, and honest at its best when it sticks the the rebels on a mission stakes (the fanservice stuff frankly…

  • It Felt Like Love

    It Felt Like Love

    ★★★

    2014 Ranking 

    Hittman is such a talented director that even here, in a debut which I wouldn't say is firing on all cylinders, that knack for using bodies within the camera to speak volumes is still evident. I don't think it fully succeeds in terms of its depth or observation of its characters, but in terms of setting the mood, capturing the sense of adolescent perspective, you can feel Hittman's assurance in this regard already. A fine precursor to bigger things to come.

  • The Great Magician

    The Great Magician

    ★★★

    2011 Film Ranking 

    Leung in prime charismatic mode, with an equally game Zhou and Lau (very different film to The Longest Nite methinks!), makes up for a mostly middling and overcomplicated yet derivative film. There's really nothing too special about the filmmaking here, but the three main performers are just so charismatic to watch onscreen that I got through just fine.

  • Where the Crawdads Sing

    Where the Crawdads Sing

    ★★½

    2022 Ranking 

    Some nice cinematography from Polly Morgan, a devoted Daisy Edgar-Jones leading turn, and the presence of David Strathairn do not a good movie make. There’s entire stretches of plot that lay hollow, a host of underdeveloped character dynamics, and some deeply strange tonal imbalance. Quite frankly, I suspect the source material has similar kinds of problems that an adaption can't fix.

  • Bubble Bath

    Bubble Bath

    ★★★½

    1979 Ranking 

    Neurotic, musically compelling animated flairs make this a rather engaging watch. I dunno if it ever really adds up to having anything particularly substantial to say thematically and in terms of its satirical element, but just on a sensory level it's firing on all cylinders and worth a watch just for the sensation and unique approach it has.

  • Do Revenge

    Do Revenge

    ★★★½

    2022 Ranking 

    Good! Didn’t know it was going to be a twist on the Strangers on a Train formula and I dug that - Mendes and Hawke work together very well. You can feel the Netflix formula of it hitting specific ‘screenshot’ moments and the stylistic touches are hit and miss but I liked it.