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  • Molly's Game

    Molly's Game

    ★★★½

    It's a testament to Sorkin's screenwriting prowess that this never much loses one's attention despite a runtime well over two hours long and despite about a half-dozen generic flip flops. Chastain, as always, is aces.

  • Happy Death Day

    Happy Death Day

    ★★½

    Fitfully inventive, yet so drug down by excessive telegraphing of its constitutive elements that each successive incarnation of this puzzle narrative becomes a bit more of a chore. Never scary either, which strikes me as something of a liability.

  • Insidious: The Last Key

    Insidious: The Last Key

    ★★★

    It's awfully cool that we have a major movie franchise in this day and age with a 75-year-old female protagonist. That being said, that this is the second origin story in a row for this series (and we're only four films in!) says a bit about the overall lack of ambition that damns this thing. Nonetheless, these Blumhouse efforts have gotten their jump scare fakeouts down to a science, so as a delivery mechanism for that sort of diverting, immediately forgettable thrill, you could do much worse.

  • Braguino

    Braguino

    ★★★½

    A fascinating if not fully formed exercise that upends notions of rural idylls, Cogitore’s mid-length documentary captures impressions of a contemporary Hatfield and McCoy feud set in isolated Siberia. Filmed in the remote Russian taiga, the striking beauty on display here soon gives way to an overwhelming sense of paranoia and largely self-imposed social injustice. This results in a work that is at once uniquely captivating in its subject matter and somewhat frustrating because Cogitore’s ethnographic inquiries are frequently thwarted…

  • Dolores Claiborne

    Dolores Claiborne

    ★★★

    All of the Deleuzian crystal-images in the world can't really paper over the scenery chewing and Elfman's melodramatic score, but Bates and Leigh are spiky in complementary, compelling ways.

    50/100

  • Gerald's Game

    Gerald's Game

    ★★★½

    Flanagan does a lot of good work in making this difficult to adapt material work on screen, but doesn't quite manage to make the ending stick.

    60/100

  • Joan Didion: The Center Will Not Hold

    Joan Didion: The Center Will Not Hold

    ★★½

    One would think that it would be hard to make a Joan Didion biopic conventional and sentimental, yet here we are...

    44/100

  • Thoroughbreds

    Thoroughbreds

    ★★★

    It's refreshing to see a film about teen girls that isn't interested in romance, but this fun thriller doesn't exactly strain for psychological plausibility. Finley is a reasonably assured stylist in the Haneke mode. Anna Taylor-Joy continues to milk her apparently narrow range to great effect.

    57/100

  • Golden Exits

    Golden Exits

    ★★★★½

    This film's heavy reliance on dissolves to get from one scene to the next is especially apt, given that Perry utilizes a unique, almost prismatic form of characterization throughout this ensemble piece. We learn about characters not just through what they do, but also through how other characters respond to them... and by how those others act when the character's not around. Marvelous work from the cast. Typically novelistic attention to detail from Perry.

    84/100

  • Never Hike Alone

    Never Hike Alone

    ★★★

    Initially, this Friday the 13th fan film seems like it might test patience, even with a runtime that's under an hour long, but once Jason shows up, it remains exciting until its conclusion. Better than several actual entries in the series...

    53/100

  • Lira's Forest

    Lira's Forest

    ★★½

    Pretty production design in the service of not much...

    43/100

  • Victor Crowley

    Victor Crowley

    ★★★

    Sitcom-level drama and ridiculously over the top violence means this is just another Hatchet film. If anything this takes itself even less seriously than before, which is a good thing in something that aims to be juvenile. The crass Laura Ortiz shines among the ensemble. 

    50/100