Favorite films

  • No Bears
  • Return to Seoul
  • Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse
  • Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret.

Recent activity

  • I Am Your Mother


  • Journey to the Dark Head


  • In the Stars


  • Sith


Pinned reviews

  • The Tree of Life

    The Tree of Life


    After introducing a classroom full of undergrads to this film tonight, one of them remained scribbling notes through all of the end credits. When he finally walked to the door, he paused, turned to me and said this [I'm recalling this as best I can, because it was late and I was distracted by classroom clean-up]:

    "It occurred to me that, after Young Jack's mother points at the sky and says, 'That's where God lives,' Adult Jack makes the realization…

  • Babette's Feast

    Babette's Feast


    Three weeks ago, I introduced this film to 35 freshmen at Seattle Pacific, and tonight I introduce it to a gathering at Saint Ambrose Anglican Church in Seattle.

    You know, I often hear this movie summed up as a story about a "worldly" Frenchwoman who becomes a part of a bone-headedly strict religious community, and how she enlightens them.

    She does enlighten them, to some extent.

    But let's not overlook that Babette fled from a civil war in Paris in…

Recent reviews

  • I Am Your Mother

    I Am Your Mother


    Why am I surprised that when Aardman does Star Wars, it's totally an Aardman movie? This was unexpectedly hilarious, joyously complicated, full of surprises, and easy to imagine happening in a galaxy very, very close to Wallace and Gromit's. Probably the silliest Star Wars adventure of all, and I mean that as a compliment. Put Aardman in charge of the next Star Wars Holiday Special.

  • Journey to the Dark Head

    Journey to the Dark Head


    All of my anime pet peeves are here:

    - More emphasis on emotion than storytelling substance
    - Characters who seem to careen between extreme emotions in ways that make me think it must be exhausting to be them
    - A preoccupation with faces distorted with rage in close-up
    - A boy and a girl falling through the clouds
    - Seemingly endless fight scenes

    Also, this dude is the worst Jedi candidate I've ever seen. My faith in Jedi Councils has…

Popular reviews

  • Gosford Park

    Gosford Park



    1. Still my favorite Altman film.
    2. Still head and shoulders above the entirety of Downton Abbey.
    3. Still the most virtuosic choreography of a large ensemble cast I've ever seen.
    4. I miss Clive Owen.
    5. That scene with Tom Hollander eating jam in the cellar. That scene.
    6. I believe that when he goes home from work, Richard E. Grant dresses and behaves just like this.
    7. All of the moments with Claudie…

  • The Innocents

    The Innocents


    Name one movie that is

    a) directed by a woman,
    b) filmed by a woman,
    c) about women, and
    d) deeply concerned with matters of faith.

    I can think of many films directed by men, and focusing on men, that rigorously wrestle with questions about God and the problem of evil. But The Innocents is a remarkably rare event.

    Here's my full review.