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  • The Square

    The Square

    ★★★★

    It is fitting, one supposes, that much of The Square has nothing to do with the exhibition of the title. In fact, one could spend the entirety of this opening paragraph talking about exhibit itself. The content of the exhibit is a lighted square on a slightly raised platform made of bricks upon the pavement leading up to the museum that houses it. The label beside it reads, "The Square is a sanctuary of trust and caring. Within it, we…

  • Murder on the Orient Express

    Murder on the Orient Express

    ★★½

    There is, in theory, nothing wrong with creative liberty in the act of adapting a novel into a film. The two are, after all, different media, and interacting with the information presented by each medium is an acutely different experience. Altering the way information is presented to the audience is often crucial: In writing, for example, expository dialogue can be one's sharpest tool within a work of murder mystery, while on film, relying upon such dialogue can feel disjointed. Being…

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  • Whiplash

    Whiplash

    ★★★★½

    There is no getting around the occasional, oft-used phrase, and "Whiplash" calls for it: This film is note-perfect. The trailers and advertisements, irrelevant in the long run to anything but marketing, have sold it short as a sort of "Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' by Sapphire" for the Juilliard set, but while it comes very close to equaling that by-now-underappreciated gem's power, the film ultimately plays in much more complex areas than simply a "...from Hell"-type thriller (You know…

  • Birdman

    Birdman

    ★★★★★

    Holy crap, the second viewing of this left me reeling. Completely underestimated it the first time. Masterpiece.