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  • The Foreigner

    The Foreigner

    ★★

    I was hoping this would be Jackie Chan's Taken, but he's almost a supporting character to a bland IRA drama starring Pierce Brosnan. The writing and Martin Campbell's direction is too bland to make this the compelling drama that it wants to be. The action scenes are fine, with hints of classic Chan, but with all of the humor and charm replaced by a dour sense of self-importance. I wanted something more than this; it's adequate for what it is.

  • Blade Runner 2049

    Blade Runner 2049

    ★★★★

    I don't give two shits about robots exploring their feelings, and I typically find futuristic worlds borderline idiotic. Despite those two major mitigating factors, Blade Runner 2049 is close enough to a visual and aural masterpiece that I almost (but not quite) forgive it. It nearly made me care about a concept that I find deeply annoying and held me in awe when I would otherwise be rolling my eyes and asking "Why that? And why that? And why that?"…

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  • Krampus

    Krampus

    ★★★½

    After hearing and reading in review after review that Krampus was a fun '80s-ish horror romp not unlike Gremlins, I was not expecting something this unremittingly dark and bleak. Still, I far prefer Daugherty's eclectic and unnerving brand of visual creepiness to the canned horror of James Wan and Blumhouse, and Krampus serves up a quality parade of Christmassy ghoulishness. It just isn't an experience you're likely to be smiling about afterward, and at several points I questioned my choice to invite my 12-year-old daughter to watch it with me. And she's been watching Gremlins since she was six.

  • Birdman

    Birdman

    ★★

    I simply didn't care. Great acting, particularly by Ed Norton and Emma Stone. Early on Stone's character lets loose with an eviscerating speech that summed up my feelings exactly. Then it kept going for over an hour.