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  • The Legend of Drunken Master

    The Legend of Drunken Master

    ★★★★

    The last fight scene in this film is perhaps the most unhinged yet refined performance I've ever scene from Jackie Chan. There is always a precision to Jackie's work which is bar-none, yet sometimes that can be to his detriment. Some of his fights can appear so choreographed that one loses sense of the emotion of the moment, and starts to simply admire the technical dance on display. Yet the final fight here taps into the pure emotion of the…

  • Dangerous Encounters of the First Kind

    Dangerous Encounters of the First Kind

    ★★½

    I saw so many 4 or 5 star reviews from people I respect for this film.  So I am definitely not going to say that my take is the absolute final word.. but man.. this film did not click for me.. at all. 

    It's like punk music in movie form.  Which perfectly sums up why I didn't like it..  Rough.. angry.. nihilistic..  but also just stylistically so uninteresting to me.  I was mostly just bored when I wasn't upset at…

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  • Whiplash

    Whiplash

    ★★★★

    Whiplash, as a movie, is quite good. Fantastic even. But as it relates to, specifically, being/becoming good at an instrument, I had a hard time suspending my disbelief, which kind of sucks because it killed a lot of the potential for payoff at the end.

    Here's a little back story:

    Before cinema, before philosophy, before writing, or even before my first truly romantic relationship... I fell in love with music. I first discovered music's potential as a senior in high…

  • Pan's Labyrinth

    Pan's Labyrinth

    ★★★★★

    Guillermo del Toro's representative work, Pan's Labyrinth, is the fantasy tale he always wanted to make. Two of his previous films, Cronos and The Devil's Backbone, were fantasy films. They both featured a child within the prominent role. They both subverted typical monster movie tropes by making the "monsters" sympathetic figures. But the completion of everything del Toro had longed to achieve was found in one, very special, labyrinthine world of fantastical monstrosities.

    Pan's Labyrinth world was as such:

    Set…