A sweaty, explosive riot of light and fluid motion, Damien Chazelle's "Babylon" pulses with a dirty, exhilarating electricity as it blends Hollywood legend, Hollywood history, and Hollywood celebration into one rousing epic. Chazelle writs it all large on his screen, as his whirlpool of a prestige picture sucks wit, literary energy, and movie myth into its dangerous maw. Layered, eye-popping, and, at times, human, the film is a thing with which to be reckoned. It is a thing to behold.
A cute and fluffy comedy short from Walt Disney, Charles A. Nichols' "Bath Day" finds Minnie Mouse's pet cat, Figaro, dealing with some local feline ruffians. The animation is brisk and lively, and its colors pop enjoyably. There is not a lot here to remember, but the results are not a waste of seven minutes.
David Hand's animated Disney short, "Building a Building," is an energetic piece of hand-drawn comedy. The story, revolving around a building's ill-fated construction, may not offer much beyond a neatly progressive look at career paths; but the black and white film pops with humor and bits of character. That humor is delivered by crisp animation that flows in choreographed rhythms and eye-catching movement. The results are enjoyable.
"Inception," at its most basic, is two things. It is a heist film dressed in science fiction conventions; and it is a study of a man trying to free himself from a near-suffocating past. "Inception," at its more complex, is a cerebral pop-masterpiece. It is an enthralling combination of thought-provoking, layered story-telling and sumptuous aesthetics enhanced by near-flawless editing, sound design, effects, and musical score. Driven by a pitch-perfect cast and the confident directorial hand of Christopher Nolan, "Inception" is a brilliant and unrivaled piece of filmmaking.
An audacious blend of imagery and allegory, Stanley Kubrick's "A Clockwork Orange" is a film that may take multiple viewings to fully appreciate. On first viewing, however, the film bursts with colors, shapes, and a searing observation of the battle between youth culture and adult stolidity. Kubrick's film, based on the novel by Anthony Burgess, is a striking and layered piece of work.
The plot of "A Clockwork Orange" revolves around Malcolm McDowell's Alex, the quintessential hooligan concerned with all…