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  • The Tenant

    The Tenant

    ★★★★

    Based on a novel by Roland Topor (Renfield in Herzog's Nosferatu), this seems almost an anthology of Roman Polanski's favorite, oppressive themes: presenting a Paris apartment which is as threatening as the London digs of Repulsion, nasty neighbors who are as demonic as those in Rosemary's Baby and identity-switch games as humiliating as Cul-de-Sac. A difference is that Polanski casts himself in the central role, constantly having to deny that he's a foreigner, suggesting this is an even more personal,…

  • O.J.: Made in America

    O.J.: Made in America

    ★★★★★

    Perhaps the most thought-provoking portrayal of race, celebrity and class I've ever seen committed to celluloid -- all told through one of the most endlessly fascinating crime stories in American history. I'm in awe of its consistent tone, focus and scope. A masterful achievement.

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  • The Vanishing

    The Vanishing

    ★★★★★

    Edgar Allen Poe once said that, without a traceable motive, anyone can commit murder with impunity. The Vanishing instantly made me think about this quote for quite a while. An excellent, methodical and expertly directed film that confidently refuses to be labeled as a one genre, George Suizer's cautionary tale about obsession and how far we'll go to find truth is an art house triumph. This dark, brilliant film has been much-talked about since its release in 1988, and for…

  • La Dolce Vita

    La Dolce Vita

    ★★★★★

    One of the true landmarks in film history (and one of my all-time favorites), La Dolce Vita is a powerful and profound film that is absolutely mesmerizing -- from the now infamous opening scene of a helicopter carrying a statue of Christ flying over Rome's ancient ruins, to the metaphorically loaded prehistoric fish washing ashore at the end. Federico Fellini's masterpiece is not only a caustic critique of modern Rome, but it's pertinent to all modern society as well. The…