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  • Martin Eden

    Martin Eden

    ★★½

    50/100

    Second viewing, no change. My previous review (from TIFF '19) tells the story; this is far and away the 2020 release most beloved by my peers that I didn't "get," though, so I wanted to give it another chance. Briefly thought I might be coming around, as the first half hour or so—when Martin's drive to improve himself intellectually seems motivated primarily by lust—unfolds with a robust fluency that belies its literary origin. And I'd forgotten about Marcello's various…

  • Silence

    Silence

    ★★★½

    61/100

    Second viewing, no change, see my previous review. Was gonna add one thought here but it'd likely anger some folks; I'll just note that this historical moment is an especially inopportune time for me to appreciate someone lamenting God's silence for years only to finally conclude, you know what, "It was in the silence that I heard your voice." Connecting that rationalization to current events I will leave as an exercise for the reader.

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  • Moonlight

    Moonlight

    ★★½

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

    49/100

    Okay, here we go: Why I think the year's most universally acclaimed film is sorta kinda not really very good. Took a second look to be sure, both because I'm always open to the possibility that I'm wrong and because I served on a festival jury with Jenkins a couple of years ago and liked him enormously, so take no pleasure in being a contrarian here. Had exactly the same reaction, alas. In descending order of importance:

    • I'm generally…

  • Sicario

    Sicario

    ★★★★½

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

    83/100

    Second viewing, no change. Having now professionally reviewed this film four times (for The Dissolve from Cannes, and then for the A.V. Club, the Nashville Scene, and the Las Vegas Weekly), I thought I had nothing left to say, especially since I made a point of addressing the most common criticisms. But since a bunch of folks are praising Adam Nayman's takedown for Reverse Shot, let me quickly address a few of his points.

    “I have to know,” Kate…