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  • Edge of Tomorrow

    Edge of Tomorrow

    ★★★★

    This is among the best blockbusters of this decade. A sly deconstruction (and reconstruction) of Tom Cruise's star persona, its also an intelligent work of action-driven science fiction, a showcase for Emily Blunt, and a blast of a movie that takes its high concept seriously and very rarely missteps. Its the sort of movie I expect I will watch dozens more times over the coming years, and if this rewatch is any indication, it is going to hold up insanely well.

  • Under the Skin

    Under the Skin

    ★★★★½

    As a piece of science fiction filmmaking, Under the Skin is an all-time great. It works as an exercise in perspective, rendering the mundane aspects of daily life alien and unnerving. Scarlett Johansson gives a phenomenal performance as something posing as human without much understanding as to what that might mean. Mica Levi's score is among the most unique and stellar of this century so far, perfectly attuned to the film's aims. Ditto Daniel Landin's stellar cinematography.

    I have some…

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  • Roma

    Roma

    ★★★★½

    Roma is, perhaps unsurprisingly, a masterpiece. This is the first film where Cuaron served as his own cinematographer, so that bears some discussion. His signature long takes remain intact, but always to a particular purpose. I get the sense that Cuaron is not philosophically in favor of long takes (like, say, Bela Tarr, who tends to push that to the extreme to make aesthetic points) so much as he understands the utility of letting a moment breathe. i consider Cuaron's…

  • Wonder Boys

    Wonder Boys

    ★★★★½

    Professor Grady Tripp (Michael Douglas) has been writing his latest novel for seven years—its now over two thousand pages long and still not done. When his wife leaves him, his mistress and boss (Frances Mcdormand) announces she's pregnant, his agent (Robert Downey Jr.) comes to town to pressure him on the book, and an eccentric student (Toby Maguire) begins to entwine himself in Grady's life, things are about to come to a head. Vacillating in a pot-induced haze, Grady takes…