Favorite films

  • New Rose Hotel
  • mid90s
  • Holy Motors
  • The Great Beauty

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  • The House That Jack Built

  • The Dry

    ★★★

  • Chappie

  • Vortex

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  • Ratcatcher

    Ratcatcher

    I saw Ratcatcher with a friend as the first part of a three-part Lynne Ramsay series at the local theater. I didn't think much of it either way. Our conversation outside the theater afterward moved pretty quickly from the film onto life updates and weekend plans.

    Before the series concluded with Morvern Callar, my friend lost his fight with addiction.

    I couldn't fight the thought that Movern Callar would have been a more fitting final film for the two of…

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  • In the Heat of the Night

    In the Heat of the Night

    ★★★

    The mystery element is an afterthought, which is a real problem because there's nothing else to push the movie forward. It's a procession of Virgil Tibbs confronting various southern archetypes. The sheriff, the wealthy plantation owner, the Good Old Boys, the overprotective brother. Maybe provides some catharsis and challenged views at the time.

    Wexler's cinematography in the opening credits is evocative. Then it's drab for the rest of the film.

  • Soul

    Soul

    ★★½

    Wild that this a Pixar film with an unlikeable protagonist and ambiguous messaging. Joe is so narcissistic that he's the first person to believe so strongly in his purpose that he's able to break the afterlife system. He dislikes all the kids he teaches because they don't live up to his standards.

    The score and the animation in the supernatural scenes are great. It could have used more actual jazz for as much as it uses that scene as a backdrop, and the animation in the real world was far less detailed than other Pixar output.

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  • Under the Skin

    Under the Skin

    ★★★★½

    It's a marvel to see how much world building Glazer does without a single line of expository dialogue. All the moments which were confounding on the first watch make perfect sense. Masterful visual storytelling. Quite a feat to make a film that reads this experimental on first watch and this conventional on second watch.

    The cold perspective on a society which equates beauty with value makes the first half a perfect film. Part of me wishes that it ended with…

  • Hard Luck Love Song

    Hard Luck Love Song

    ★★★½

    Michael Dorman shooting pool in Texas with Durand Jones and Patrick Sweany in the background. Filling a lot of voids for me, especially the Patriot one.

    The middle third is really strong. It starts fun and then the layers peel back to reveal an intense relationship between two people with a lot of history and more invested in each other than either of them are willing to let on. There's a great ebb and flow with tons of chemistry between…