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  • A Matter of Life and Death

    A Matter of Life and Death

    A vision of a heaven preoccupied with earthly matters to the point of near-ridiculousness (the trial sequence seems a bit long-winded on first watch). As a whole, it’s much more intriguing visually than philosophically. Undoubtedly, my least favorite of the Powell-Pressburger films I’ve seen thus far (and I've seen some great ones: Black Narcissus, The Red Shoes, Peeping Tom).

  • Rebel Without a Cause

    Rebel Without a Cause

    A truly rough few days for Jim Stark. A melodramatic exploration of masculinity made famous by Dean’s landmark performance and made especially intriguing by the fact of the sexual orientations of Dean, Mineo, and Ray.

  • Pather Panchali

    Pather Panchali

    ★★★★★

    Beautiful in every way. Near flawless shot composition. Natural and humane storytelling at its best. Can’t wait to complete the trilogy and dive into the rest of Ray’s oeuvre.

  • The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring

    The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring

    ★★★½

    Hasn't quite aged as well I'd hoped it had.

  • Raising Arizona

    Raising Arizona

    ★★★

    The sequence up to the opening title is the peak of the film as far as pacing goes. There are plenty of funny moments after, but each scene feels stretched thin more and more as time goes by.

  • Dancer in the Dark

    Dancer in the Dark

    ★★★

    Bjork and Von Trier are quite the pairing considering neither one of them caters to popular taste in anything they do. That said, I was really captivated by the film, especially by Bjork's performance and the shocking effect of the Dogma 95 rules/guidelines/limitations.

    It began to lose me a little when the songs became more frequent (let's just say these are not songs that you'll be humming afterwards). These are also not the most engaging dance sequences I've ever seen…

  • Beauty and the Beast

    Beauty and the Beast

    ★★★

    Satisfies as a remake. Just plain old Disney as always.

  • Jackie

    Jackie

    ★★★★★

    Cinema is a great tool for empathy and feeling what other people have felt. Jackie allows us to feel for another person unlike few, maybe any, historical biopics about those who have lived in the White House. It covers all of the criticisms that have been thrown at Kennedy over the years and then, shows the painstaking process by which Jackie sought to silence them. And the film respects her enough to show her selfishness along with her maternal selflessness,…

  • Barton Fink

    Barton Fink

    ★★★★

    First time, but I'm looking forward to digging deeper into this one.

  • Jackie

    Jackie

    ★★★★½

    Historical dramas rarely do their subjects the justice of depicting them as multi-dimensional, contradictory, complex human beings who think and feel many things all at once. Jackie does Jackie Kennedy that justice. After watching the film, you probably won't be tempted to paraphrase her into a few words. This is an incredible, incredible movie about how our leaders are mortals forced to act immortal for the greater good, and how acting immortal can seem like an act of selflessness and selfishness at the same time.

    Hats off to Mica Levi's score.

  • Minimalism: A Documentary About the Important Things

    Minimalism: A Documentary About the Important Things

    ★½

    Even under 80 minutes, this doc can't help but sound like a broken record. Of course, we all are too focused on material things. Of course, all these things are not what is most important in life. I don't know if it's more sad that this has been said so much and yet we still need to make a movie about it or that the film has nothing else worth saying on the subject.

  • Silence

    Silence

    ★★★★★

    Please note: I'm not surprised that the consensus on Silence is not overwhelmingly positive, but for anyone interested in exploring the nuances of the Christian faith, this is a monumental film. Here's a review from this believer's perspective:

    There are two kinds of movies: those that confirm what the audience thinks and those that require the audience to test their beliefs. Traditionally, Christians tend to make and prefer the former. A market for faith-based films has been apparent since Mel…