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  • Venus

    Venus

    ★★★

    It's just 12 years old and it feels like a time capsule from another century. Journey back to a world where "dying old guy tells teenager he's been thinking about her c--t" is a normal plot for a movie! See your sympathies get attached to said old man, instead of the conniving teenager!

    Here's the thing: I *like* old, out-of-time movies and enjoyed this for what it was. It's relentlessly drab and dark, literally so; watching it on an iPad,…

  • King in the Wilderness

    King in the Wilderness

    ★★★★

    Of all the Boomer Bedtime Stories we’re getting this year — Ken Burns on Vietnam, “Bobby Kennedy for President” — this is both the most formulaic and the most essential. 

    The “wilderness” is the period between the passage of the Voting Rights Act and MLK’s murder, aka the years when Hollywood and popular history about King usually trail off. Civil rights historians are constantly fighting and losing the battle to rescue King’s legacy from the “content of their character” soundbite,…

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  • The Florida Project

    The Florida Project

    ★★★★★

    Let Sean Baker do anything he wants. After "Tangerine" and this one, I'm ready to call him America's Ken Loach -- except he knows better than to tie everything together neatly. The secret, I think, is that he asks us to identify with people who can't or don't want to express themselves well, and just runs the movie around them.

  • Hereditary

    Hereditary

    ★★★½

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    The loss of a child sets off a chain of surreal, Satanic events, culminating in our protagonists, isolated from civilization, realize that they are pawns in a thousand-year act of witchcraft.

    I’m talking, of course, about “Antichrist,” one of the several unsettling horror films that “Hereditary” borrows from blends into a modern, marketable story. It’s still good, despite some slack in the middle, and it deserves some credit for prioritizing dread over jump scares. I like middlebrow puzzle movies, and…