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  • Hypocrites

    Hypocrites

    ★★★★

    This is what I love about the early silents. There are no rules - or at least, there aren't the rules we assume movies will follow today. There is nothing in HYPOCRITES that works as a realistic portrayal of anything at all - unless you want to see it as a story about a priest who is so sad that people don't believe anymore, he sits down and just literary dies.

    There's the priest. Then there's his spiritual self, or…

  • The Amazing Spider-Man 2

    The Amazing Spider-Man 2

    ★★★½

    I keep coming back to this movie. For one thing, it thoroughly entertains me, but I also feel it provides an opening for a discussion on the importance of spectacle in cinema.

    Cinema is the artform of daze. Unlike a great painting or a masterpiece novel, there is always something nonsensical about even the best movies ever made. The train is still arriving at the station. The images in a movie are always on some level symbolic, and their logic…

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  • Psycho

    Psycho

    ★★½

    It's sort of bad but interesting, which is about the same as good but predictable. It was all it had going for it anyway.

    What bugs me is how sloppy it is. It's a line-for-line, not a shot-for-shot-remake. The mise-en-scene is full of ugly close-ups and almost pan-scanny jerkiness, and the actors seem to be left to their own devices (which doesn't help their often akward performances). Had Van Sant actually duplicated the cinematography more obstinately, and decided what kind…

  • Mission: Impossible - Fallout

    Mission: Impossible - Fallout

    ★★★★

    I have not been a fan of any previous MI:s but here it unexpectedly comes in to focus. The reason, I think, is the movie's head-on dealing with serendipity. There is something deeply cinematic about Ethan Hunt here, where he previously was a mere bodily container for Cruise. The seemingly random set of events, and the hand of god that makes him prevail, actually gets me thinking of Buster Keaton. That plus a much more concrete game of tag (finally no more plot pretentions) and villains that pose a more direct, palpable threat. Tom Cruise's death-wish (?) doesn't hurt either.

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  • Pan's Labyrinth

    Pan's Labyrinth

    ★★★

    After eight years, it's a bit of a letdown to find that PAN'S LABYRINTH really isn't a film about any labyrinth of Pan's but rather a film about a Spanish fascist general killing or torturing a bunch of people. In the confused moral landscape of the film, fascism seems to constitute "reality"; so I guess we're all fascists at heart, unless we live in fantasy worlds of course.

    The film is imaginative but I found it to be a bit…

  • The Touch

    The Touch

    ★★

    Catching up with Bergman 16/20

    Elliot: Hi. I'm Elliot Gould. Is this a Bergman movie? It seems I'm in Sweden.

    Bibi: Oh, yes hello, we're two Swedish actors who have worked with Ingmar for more than twenty years, let's speak English for a while

    E: Okay, um. Here's a line for you, Bibi: I love you

    B: You do?

    E: Yes

    B: I probably love you too

    E: That's fine.

    B: I mean I'm not sure. I'm pregnant?

    E: Sorry,…