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Jeremy has written 114 reviews for films rated ★½ .

  • Mega Time Squad

    Mega Time Squad

    ★½

    A low-stakes Kiwi comedy that generates most of its yuks from foul language. The time-travel premise is mildly intriguing at first but ultimately adds little to yet another tale of a man in the throes of arrrsted development becoming more fully realized via an underdeveloped female character’s intervention.

  • Vision

    Vision

    ★½

    There’s a fine line between beguilingly mysterious and blandly new agey, and to these eyes Kawase’s latest falls on the wrong side of that border. Centering around a French scientist (Juliette Binoche) who travels to a mountainous Japanese forest in search of a fabled spore that only blooms ever 997 years, this self-serious drama exhibits most of Kawase’s worst tendencies. There are arbitrary cuts to nature footage, vague affirmations of unity, and a general malaise that becomes the dominant tone.…

  • 22 July

    22 July

    ★½

    Greengrass is exactly the wrong director to helm a film about a battle couched in competing symbols and ideologies. He sure knows how to stage a child shooting, though!

  • Out of Blue

    Out of Blue

    ★½

    As a detective story, this is aesthetically and intellectually on the level of a TV procedural, but I got to see Patricia Clarkson dance drunk at a strip club, so not a total write-off...

  • Donnybrook

    Donnybrook

    ★½

    On paper, a chase thriller in the mold of No Country for Old Men or Hell or High Water starring Jamie Bell and Frank Grillo sounds appealing, but as directed by Tim Sutton, it’s focused on atmospherics to the point of emptiness. Economic anxiety is the overstated excuse for this exercise in sadism, but for all of the lip service paid to the dire straits of the American working class, there’s very little sense that any of these factors truly…

  • Fistful of Dirt

    Fistful of Dirt

    ★½

    A year after The Shape of Water improbably won Best Picture, there’s every chance that there’s an audience for this amphibious political fable from Sebastián Silva. For me, it’s even more misguided an effort, dragged into the sea by a lead performance from a child that does almost nothing to suggest interior life. With that void at the film’s center, the use of post-Maria Puerto Rico for the setting provides most of its pathos, yet there’s something decidedly opportunistic about…

  • Chaos

    Chaos

    ★½

    This documentary captures the loneliness and pain of three Syrian women. While it attempts to examine how life among the diaspora is scarcely less traumatic than that of those who have remained, the execution is stilted and ineffective. There’s a fundamental honesty in Fattahi’s decision to address the political from the domestic sphere, I suppose, but drawn out sequences of these women making dinner in real time or travelling through city streets blunt the force of their confessional monologues. The…

  • The Meg

    The Meg

    ★½

    No obvious commitment on display from anyone involved, yet not really shooting for camp value either.

  • Sicario: Day of the Soldado

    Sicario: Day of the Soldado

    ★½

    The troubling, murky politics of its predecessor are entirely absent, leaving a stock plot and a considerably less impressive sense of style.

  • The Color of Pomegranates

    The Color of Pomegranates

    ★½

    I’ve always thought that I have a fairly high tolerance for obscure avant-garde filmmaking, but my reaction a movie like Sergei Paradjanov’s much-heralded The Color of Pomegranates reminds me just how closed-minded I can be. I realize when watching it that it’s a film of unusual artistic integrity. Its director has made no concessions to filmic conventions and audience expectation in metaphorically retelling the life of 18th century Armenian poet Sayat Nova. Filmed entirely with a still camera, Pomegranates makes…

  • The Barbaric Beast of Boggy Creek, Part II

    The Barbaric Beast of Boggy Creek, Part II

    ★½

    Charles B. Pierce’s oddball, cornball Sasquatch movie Boggy Creek II: …And the Legend Continues may be somewhat ineptly made and the antithesis of frightful (It was, in fact, spoofed in an episode of the TV-show Mystery Science Theater 3000), but it has a few charms thanks to its considerable local color. Set in rural Texarkana, the movie is a quintessential example of the kind of low-budget regional filmmaking that has churned out a series of B-movies that would be utterly…

  • Bloody Sunday

    Bloody Sunday

    ★½

    The cinema verite style that Paul Greengrass’ supposed historical recreation film Bloody Sunday employs opens a dangerous can of worms that I could never push back shut while watching it. Reconstructing the events that occurred leading up to and after a British troops turned fire on an Irish civil rights march in Derry, Ireland on the fateful day January, 30 1972, the movie is stylized so that it closely resembles reality, but it presents a defiantly biased point of view,…