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  • Effi Briest

    Effi Briest

    ★★★★½

    Fassbinder is a confusing director for me in that when I try and think of which of his films I like best I get dizzy because they all are viably 'best', and the guy made 40+ movies. Effi Briest is another contender, a deceptively brutal melodrama that, like Quarelle, hints at the evolution in tone that the famously hedonistic auteur's work was heading in before his early death. To be certain this is a Rainer Werner joint through and through,…

  • Summer 1993

    Summer 1993

    ★★★★½

    Watched at Lincoln Film Center in New York.

    Like the best slow cinema, Summer 1993 crafts a deceptively simple filmic space where images and moments transcend and transport. Like the best films about childhood it eschews nostalgia and sentimentality in favor of a raw nerve depiction of the uncomfortable but beautiful liminal sensations of early youth. Authentic performances would be an understatement, you have to go back to Maurice Pialat or Bresson for viable points of comparison. Beautiful gliding camera…

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  • Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

    Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

    ★★

    Ugh. Am I the only one that hated this? Yeah, Francis McDormand gives a good performance and all that but I'm hard pressed to think of anything else to recommend this besides that. Ultimately very hollow and tonally messy, the biggest problem is how it treats its characters like cartoons while constantly punching down/shitting on them. Like the similarly themed mis-fire Logan Lucky, there were some pretty obvious stabs at capturing the national post-election mood, but most everything pretty much…

  • Martin

    Martin

    ★★★★½

    The modern day vampire deconstruction film (Let The Right One In, Only Lovers Left Alive etc) is pretty well known these days, though few are aware the trend actually started back in the 70s with a super underappreciated George A. Romero gem called Martin, about a young, awkward vampire who mostly feeds on horny, bored housewives and the occasional hobo. A mashup of a few different genres but never not its own thing, it can be a hard movie to…