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  • Eraserhead

    Eraserhead

    ★★★★★

    But having rated it five stars, I'm not sure if I ever want to do this to myself again. It was my first time in the theater, and I forgot that on my previous viewing at home I paused a couple times (toilet break, water). In the theater, there is no escape, and I seriously contemplated fleeing a couple times, just because I found the film so effectively anxiety-inducing.

    ERASERHEAD is a miracle of sound design, of no-budget imagination, of…

  • The Long Day Closes

    The Long Day Closes

    ★★★★½

    Perhaps you're like me, and haven't seen much Davies, but you've seen enough Loach and Leigh to feel like you've got the measure of things when it comes to British kitchen-sink miserablism, and autobiographical coming of age stories have no special appeal for you, and you saw THE HOUSE OF MIRTH sixteen years ago and it quickly faded into a miasma of costume dramas, bubbling between THE END OF THE AFFAIR and AN IDEAL HUSBAND and a passel of Austen…

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  • Empire of the Sun

    Empire of the Sun

    ★★★★½

    or "Little James-San Wants To Fly". People giving stick for Spielberg making a superhero movie should probably consider BLACKHAWK in the context of it being at least his fourth WWII aviation-obsessed film (fifth if you count TINTIN), just one of the many weird contextual associations I made as a result of catching up with this three decades too late. Perhaps it's a result of the implausibility inherent in the Spielberg/Stoppard/Ballard marriage, one that renders an early sinuous shot of a…

  • I Feel Pretty

    I Feel Pretty

    Michelle Williams is embarGOAT

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  • La La Land

    La La Land

    ★★★★

    Saw this weeks ago but been under NZ embargo, and suspect my reaction would be even more positive if I had written a review at the time and/or hadn't been worn down by the haters, who are legion and seem to take enormous pride in their position. I sincerely get that there are flaws in this film, and I have zero issue with someone filing their "not for me" review and moving on, but I also fully believe that there…

  • mother!

    mother!

    ★★★★½

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

    For about 80% of the time, I was grooving on this based on what I clearly understood the metaphor to be: the balance between domestic life and relationship v. the industry demands, with the house the physical representation of their relationship, complete with structural flaws that can never be covered over no matter how hard you try. I suspected, in fact, it was a self-excoriating look at how Aronofsky's relationship fell apart just as BLACK SWAN took off, through a…