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  • Silence

    Silence

    ★★★★½

    The movie that most suffers in comparison to Silence is the other 2016 film by a prominent Catholic director set in the past about a young man (played by Andrew Garfield) who travels to Japan on a religious mission where he will face excruciating and painful tests of his faith—that being Mel Gibson’s Hacksaw Ridge.

    I loved Hacksaw at the time, and still do—but at the same time, the comparison to Silence reveals its message to be so simple as…

  • Another Year

    Another Year

    ★★★★★

    There were two small moments in here that felt a tiny bit *off*, and I'd like to elaborate on them:

    1) Mary, an attractive woman in her early 50s, has spent the first half of the movie flirting with Joe, her friend Gerri's much younger son. In "Autumn," Joe shows up with an (age-appropriate) girlfriend on his arm, a charming woman named Katie.

    At this point, we know quite a bit about Mary's past (she's been divorced once, she later…

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  • An American Tail

    An American Tail

    ★★½

    The way the waves turned into gargoyles in the scene where Fievel gets separated from his family is so wonderful. It's a shame that the Pixar monopoly has cast that aside forever in favor of boring CGI-"realism." Oh well.

  • Salò, or the 120 Days of Sodom

    Salò, or the 120 Days of Sodom

    ★★★

    A few stray shots:

    1- Despite the pointed historical setting, I'm not sure I take it as a political film. The masters are WW2-era fascists, but the locus of evil is the power structures, and nothing about those are specific to fascism.

    (Neoliberalism has the exact same power structures, and--not for nothing--more than its fair share of sadists who get off on sexually torturing children in ritualized ceremonies!)

    2- So that said, I don't see *why* he changed the setting…

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  • Jurassic World

    Jurassic World

    ★★★★★

    JURASSIC WORLD is to the Hollywood blockbuster what FUNNY GAMES was to the horror/thriller film.

    While Trevorrow's film is a novel idea, it's certainly not wholly unprecedented--Zack Snyder and Marc Forster attempted similar experiments with SUCKER PUNCH and QUANTUM OF SOLACE, both movies beloved by me but that failed to connect with audiences, as their Distancing Effect proved too great a burden for audiences to bear (in the latter example particularly, Forster's formal radicalism was mistaken for ineptitude). Trevorrow overcomes…

  • Tangerine

    Tangerine

    ★★★½

    The movie I saw right before this was The Revenant. Can you imagine? From that to this collection of amateur actors performing in front of an iPhone with zero fucks given about beauty or continuity, and they're reading lines from a script that likewise gives zero fucks about profundity.

    I feel like I was given a special glimpse into one of two possible futures of cinema, and oh Christ do I hope we take the Tangerine path.