• Incredibles 2

    Incredibles 2

    ★★★

    Very surprised by how cringe all the “Superhero Legalization” stuff is. Absolutely none of it would play out how it does, and what makes it worse is that the whole time they talk about a legal and political side of the story without a single ounce of actual opposition coming from there.

    Instead, Screenslaver drives the second act, which is fine, but it’s just too much to switch gears from “Screens keep us complacent” to “Superheroes function similarly to screens…

  • Watership Down

    Watership Down

    ★★★

    Retains the good heart of the source material, but man I just wasn’t compelled by this at all, even at 90 minutes. In fighting back against the episodic structure of the novel and truncating almost every sequence, the whole thing loses pace and all the narrative personality.

    Still, the art style is magnificent and the rabbit deaths are terrifyingly rendered.

  • Samurai Rebellion

    Samurai Rebellion

    ★★★★

    PATHS OF GLORY meets SWORD OF DOOM… sort of.

    Consistently asserts the divine authority of marriage over the petty authority of man, but complicates the argument with a heavy dose of reality. Ultimately, in tragedy we can do that which is just… and when that doesn’t work, we can pray that the next generation might do the same.

    Also, another Mifune vs Nakadai showdown, you love to see it

  • Michael Clayton

    Michael Clayton

    ★★★½

    Greatest “Title quality” to “Film quality” disparity of all time. Should’ve been called Shiva: God of Death

  • Solaris

    Solaris

    ★★★

    Absolutely pathetic in comparison to Tarkovsky’s version, but you can applaud Soderbergh for bringing something so confidently composed and meditative to Hollywood sci fi… I just wish there was a little bit more to it.

    It’s too interested in the central romance to leave time for any real philosophical contemplation. We get the “she’s only a construction based on his memory” idea, but…? Where the film goes with that is just not all that RICH to me, primarily because it…

  • Saboteur

    Saboteur

    ★★★½

    Since the beginning of time, Americans have said “Snitches get stitches” and given a free pass to anyone who’s hot enough.

  • The Man Who Knew Too Much

    The Man Who Knew Too Much

    ★★½

    Not a single chair is thrown in this movie

  • Encanto

    Encanto

    ★★★½

    Disney do hand drawn animation again challenge

  • Kagemusha

    Kagemusha

    ★★★★½

    Initially felt rather slowly paced without an apparent purpose: The Samurai Lord is dying and needs a double, and we’re going to view it objectively from everyone’s perspective so that there’s no mystery or intrigue.

    But as the film reveals itself, the role that the Thief takes on must interact with more people and execute more responsibilities, which layer on top of each other and craft a real complex picture of power and its place among established hierarchies. So much…

  • Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts

    Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts

    Kind of pointless, honestly. There’s only so many times you can hit the same emotional beat (with almost every single interviewee) of nostalgia and melancholy before it starts to feel manufactured and false. Saying “these movies mean so much to so many people” is very empty sentiment. 

    I did “grow up on Harry Potter” so it was at least nice to see the crew all back together again

  • On the Waterfront

    On the Waterfront

    ★★★★½

    “If I spill, my life ain't worth a nickel.”
    “And how much is your soul worth if you don't?”

    Makes it incredibly clear, as it should, how infinitely more important the status of our souls are than that of our earthly bodies. Adds onto this all of the rage, mobs, informants, unions, and pigeons to create a complexity I haven’t entirely grasped yet. But the grain, the on location shooting, the blood, Marlon Brando, all of it is so physical that the image is inescapable.

  • The Big Lebowski

    The Big Lebowski

    ★★★★½

    It just gets better. The Man in Me has gotta be one of the best needle drops ever. The Dude abides.

    “But sometimes there’s a man… sometimes, there’s a man.”