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  • Sylvio

    Sylvio

    ★★★½

    A minor miracle: a parody of crowdpleasing Sundance quirkfests that also manages to be a really good version of one.

  • Palm Beach

    Palm Beach

    ★★★½

    Takes the Altman aesthetic of zooms and overlapping dialogue/soundtracks to avant-garde extremes (Thoms was the founder of Sydney's experimental filmmaking collective Ubu Films and this was his sort-of narrative debut), resulting in a pleasantly desultory Saturday-afternoon ambience that's impressively sustained for 90 minutes. A rare instance where mumbly, obviously-improvised performances actually help rather than hinder things. Bonus points for the sight of Bryan Brown shooting a cop on Manly Corso.

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  • The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

    The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

    "Or what? You'll release the dogs? Or the bees? Or the dogs with bees in their mouths so when they bark they shoot bees at you?"

  • The Lobster

    The Lobster

    Wrote a little defence/appreciation of this 'un here: fourthreefilm.com/2015/12/staff-picks-the-2015-grab-bag/

    "It’s a bit of a waste of space defending a generally acclaimed and commercially successful film, but I thought I’d throw in a defense of Yorgos Lanthimos’ The Lobster, since its dismissals in the insular world of the critics I generally follow (aka my Twitter timeline) seem to outnumber its fans. On the one hand, I can understand the arguments against it: Lanthimos’ proclivity for 1:1 allegorisation of his themes (just…