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  • Raw Deal

    Raw Deal


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

    Noirvember #1

    I watched this on Amazon Prime where it looked like it was ripped from a ratty VHS tape. Even with that, though, it was clear from the very beginning that this was one of the best looking noirs I'd ever seen. Being that it's shot by the master photographer of this genre, John Alton, that shouldn't have been much of a surprise.

    Of course its got moody urban sequences, both exteriors and apartments at night with shafts of…

  • Walking the Streets of Moscow

    Walking the Streets of Moscow


    A pitch perfect portrait of young adulthood. Starts on a reflection and ends on a song. Eschews conventional resolutions and plotting in favor of highlighting small moments of interaction (a particular delight is the police station scene, which finds comedy in bickering and a misunderstanding and the movement of an ink well). Both heartwarming and bittersweet, Walking the Streets of Moscow features an impeccable mis en scene from director George Daneliya, who keeps moving characters around inside cluttered widescreen frames…

Recent reviews

  • The Flight of the Eagle

    The Flight of the Eagle


    Compared to some other arctic exploration stories, this seemed to be lacking some amount of bleakness or horror or despair. Certainly the story calls for it, but the second half of The Flight of the Eagle never quite brought home the hopeless situation these men were in. I did really like the expressionistic touches of dreams and memories and wish Troell had leaned into that even more. My main reason for watching this was the dearly departed Max von Sydow. He doesn't disappoint, though in reading about the real Andree it almost seems like they could've pushed his performance even further into something unhinged.

  • You Can't Take It with You

    You Can't Take It with You


    Haha, they should've taken this one with them! Just kidding, this movie is fine, just a little too zany for my tastes. I couldn't help but think of another broadly comedic stage play adapted to film by Frank Capra, Arsenic and Old Lace, which successfully balances wackiness with some pitch black humor. Here we've got Wacky Family Time balanced against Predictable Life Lessons. Thankfully, there're some wonderful scenes just between Jimmy Stewart and Jean Arthur which are by far the highlight of the film. Charmers, those two were.

Popular reviews

  • Code Unknown

    Code Unknown


    Film #4 for Movie Club

    Code Unknown features a prologue wherein a group of deaf children are trying to guess the idea that one of their classmates is attempting to express. A little girl cowers down into a corner and the other children offer ideas: sad? scared? imprisoned? Haneke ends the scene before any of the children guess correctly, and subsequently gives us a preview of what we're about to watch: people trying and failing to understand each other.


  • Star Wars

    Star Wars


    "Curse this metal body!"

    When I watched Star Wars (repeatedly) as a kid, my favorite characters were, without a doubt, Han and Chewie. Least favorite character? C-3PO. Depending on the scene at hand, I found his presence either unnecessary or annoying.

    However, when re-watching these films as an adult, C-3PO has probably become my favorite character. I now find his constant bickering with R2-D2 and his eternally 'Oh, woe is me!' put upon attitude charming and genuinely funny. It really…