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  • The Whole Town's Talking

    The Whole Town's Talking

    ★★★½

    69/100
    Delightful. Two Edward G. Robinsons for the price of one, the first major film appearance of Jean Arthur, prime squealing from Donald Meek, general gangster movie satire, and an indelible drunk Eddie scene. (He takes a puff of a cigar, starts wheezing; he's given a shot, spills half of it down his shirt, starts wheezing more upon ingesting it; he's given another shot, drinks it all, coughs a little more, then stops; a slow, creeping look of self-satisfaction crosses…

  • Magnificent Obsession

    Magnificent Obsession

    ★★★

    51/100
    Compared to the delicate balancing acts Sirk would come to make, feels too much like a bunch of dramatic complications haphazardly thrown on top of each other and fired at the wrong times; a shame, since the appearance of a Scientology-esque secret cable of rich, vaguely Christian pseudo-philanthropists hint at the levels of implicit satire Sirk would reach by the end of his career. Can't say I more than respect this, however, since a Sirk in which the melodrama…

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  • Jaws

    Jaws

    ★★★★½

    90/100 (Third watch, was 94)
    Jaws belongs to alcohol as much as it belongs to Bruce the Shark. Alcohol appears in about half the scenes, and the central trio, Brody, Hooper, and Quint, can be aptly characterized by how they handle alcohol. Brody, the hydrophobic Everyman, pours wine into beer mugs but can't tolerate Quint's homemade shots. Hooper, the wealthy but surprisingly badass oceanographer, knows to air his wine but can still drink a shot. And Quint, the hardened shark-hunter,…

  • Seven Men from Now

    Seven Men from Now

    ★★★★½

    86/100
    Arguable, of course, but maybe the pinnacle of the classical western, or at least what I view as the classical western- McCabe and Unforgiven are revisionist, Johnny Guitar is perverse, Ford films are more of their time period than the past, Leone films are epic, Mann films are pop-psychological, Hawks films are so Hawksian... but Seven Men From Now is a near-perfect execution of a staid template, so well-executed that it can be easily taken for granted. Maybe it's…