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  • Ratatouille

    Ratatouille

    What studio is capable of gifting the graces of the Earth with a film about a kitchen rat infestation that happens to be extraordinary?

    Pixar.

    To think, this film was saved by Brad Bird and his team in a relative crunch. To have such a motley, layered script with subplots, pounding messages, and more; it is something else. Ratatouille is an exceptionally fine wine that is lifted up by its lively pacing.

    The dialogue is complex and specifically written for…

  • Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl

    Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl

    Where do I begin?

    Underrated?

    That's a difficult word to latch onto a franchise that prints money, but The Curse of the Black Pearl admittedly qualifies. It's remarkable that this doesn’t deserve the gallows, and please, let me tell you why.

    The script is LEGENDARY. No, it seriously is. Its uniqueness and unpredictability aren’t its only high marks. The moments of exposition are handled meticulously well, and the indirect characterization especially is marvelous: struggles, relationships, motivations, goals, wants, needs, choices,…

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  • La La Land

    La La Land

    There’s a difference between good and bad fan-service. Like Into the Spider-Verse’s effective handling of the web slinger’s lore, what you find here is an astounding homage to musicals of a bygone era.

    Minor spoilers to follow.

    I’m afraid you may not ‘get’ this film if its narrative choices are taken at face value, or if you actually think it’s only rooted in nostalgia for jazz and old Hollywood, or if you find yourself bored watching it. This film just…

  • Saving Private Ryan

    Saving Private Ryan

    Minor spoilers to follow, typically concerning early on in the film.


    This is THE film telling what it means for those of us that live on the attempted survival of those that did not make it out alive of our conflicts. This goes not only for soldiers themselves, but for ALL of us. We, who bear the fruits of such acts of survival.

    Survival.

    Spielberg and writer Robert Rodat don’t tumble for the tropes of toughness, courage, or patriotism, but…