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  • Ghostland

    Ghostland

    ★★½

    Pascal Laugier's Martyrs is one of my "favourite" modern horror movies, in the sense I can't ever watch it again because it was so soul-destroying and really got under my skin. No pun intended. It was so refreshing to have a horror movie that was scary and unnerving, but also sharply intelligent, with a story not like anything I'd seen before.

    That makes Incident in a Ghostland predictably disappointing because it's 80% typical US slasher/home invasion movie and 20% some…

  • Hackers

    Hackers

    ★★★½

    There had been movies about computer hacking before 1995, most famously in John Badham's Cold War classic WarGames (1983), where Matthew Broderick almost triggered World War III after hacking a supercomputer to "play a game" of intercontinental nuclear armageddon, but Iain Softley's Hackers is more interesting for being released at the brink of the Internet Age. It seems crazy now, but this movie was released barely a month after Windows 95 debuted. 1995 doesn't seem that long ago, but 23…

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  • Toni Erdmann

    Toni Erdmann

    Sorry, but this doesn't deserve the acclaim festooned upon it. 92% on Rotten Tomatoes, I see. Amazing.

    TONI ERDMANN is a German drama miss-sold as a comedy (the lead actress even agrees), about an eccentric father with a love of disguises, who pays his estranged career-minded daughter a surprise visit, and proceeds to cause her great embarrassment.

    Good idea. FUNNY idea. They're going to remake this with Kristen Wiig and Jack Nicholson. So someone clearly thinks it's a comedy in…

  • Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

    Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

    ★★

    I was astonished by how poor Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them was. I think the Harry Potter franchise worked because of the hero's journey and seeing magic through the eyes of children, plus all the British character actors and inherent eccentricity. And even then, the best movies were those that felt more 'inspired by' the books than slavishly reverential to them.

    Now J.K Rowling's Wizarding Wording is expanding into 1920s New York, with adults playing real-life Pokemon Go,…