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  • Assassination Nation

    Assassination Nation

    ★★½

    A real try-hard attempt to make an American Gaspar Noe film — the thing is, the unbelievably pretentious conversations in Noe’s movies, come off way better when you’re reading them via subtitles. What works on the page (a la tweet thread or thinkpiece) feels like pseudo intellectual pontificating which literally characterizes 75% of the film’s dialogue - from conversations amongst friends to the scene between the Lead and the Principal - the conversations felt forced, unearned, unfunny and way too…

  • Searching

    Searching

    ★★★

    A lot of reasons why I wanted to love this but ultimately way too sentimental, uncool, schticky, cloying for me. Every strategy that was supposed to make me give a shit actually did the opposite. Lot of unintentional laughter in the theater and also a bit of intentional laughter as well. Sadly those moments, along with moments of genuine tension were too few and far between. The confrontation with the brother, the live streamed funeral, and his momentary foray into…

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  • Assholes

    Assholes

    ★★★★½

    Went in feeling extremely skeptical and came out a big time believer. This film is much closer to the Czech new wave than "mumblecore" - expounding on ideas of love and disgust with a visual language that cannot and will not be denied. Every shot has a distinct idea behind it, every plot point is either funny or disarming. Understanding that visualizing disease and sores in the context of romance and sex is still quite transgressive, gives the movie an…

  • The Nice Guys

    The Nice Guys

    ★½

    Terrible all the way around. Casting/performances uniformally bad. 70s details stale and off. Writing tired and unfunny. Action scenes edited more like their contemporaries which means fast cuts and very little choreography/blocking. Just a tedious slog. Only decent performance was from Russell Crowe. How do you cast Keith David and underutilize him? Clearly Shane Black thought he was making his Chinatown (a movie about 70s LA conspiracy made in 2016) but can you imagine anything more stale than a porn cover up plot in a period noir piece? Give me a break! There were a few funny lines - that's it.