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  • Floating Weeds

    Floating Weeds

    ★★★★

    There's something about Ozu's knack for achieving a depth of insight and emotional resonance through highly distinctive formal precision and a seemingly effortless delicacy of touch that makes me think he was one of the finest, most unique directors of all time. Although Floating Weeds deals with violent emotions - expressed even physically, not a common sight in an Ozu film -, serenity is the prevailing feeling the viewer is left with, stemming from the characters' world-weary resignation to the compromises, the disappointments, and the fleeting joys of life.

  • The Lodge

    The Lodge

    ★★

    Psychological torture porn under a thin veneer of arthouse tropes (glacial pacing, self-serious tone, ambiguous plot points, "one perfect shot" cinematography). There's no emotional catharsis or genre thrills to be had; thematically, the relentless female miserabilism amounts to zilch. Even the rather predictable plot twist ends up being anticlimactic because it's treated in an offhand way, as if the directors were above the pulpiness of the material. The dollhouse element can only be a blatant Hereditary homage, proving how misguidedly…

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  • The Cabin in the Woods

    The Cabin in the Woods

    ★★★★

    Tongue-in-cheek, it disembowels the conventions of the 'Evil Dead'-type of horror stories and, surprisingly, makes for a frightening self-reflexive indictment of the audiences' thirst for human blood onscreen - all the while masked as silly entertainment.

  • Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

    Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

    ★★★★★

    Majestic, dead-serious epic about innate decency and innate treachery in intelligent species. Character interaction betrays not a hint of foolishness - they all survived devastating tragedies and still manage to go on, even if unable to be completely happy or carefree again. A summer blockbuster tinged with melancholy.