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  • Hugo

    Hugo

    Never saw this as an overbearing film preservation PSA the way some did but as a necessary primer in early film history, and it only grows more urgent with each new film of Scorsese’s. The Wolf of Wall Street, however unlikely, ushered in the era of digital distribution, Silence took a bath, and The Irishman’s budget was so daunting that only Netflix had the balls to bankroll it. Perhaps it’s that last movie’s way of recontextualizing every other late-period Scorsese…

  • Righteous Kill

    Righteous Kill

    Watched this turkey for Thanksgiving. Pretty worthless, mostly thought about The Irishman, but probably has some drinking-game bad movie value if one is so inclined. Also, if you’re interested in Pacino yelling “Bye-bye!” and running away like a little goblin boy, you can jump in around 1:27:30. Some of the funniest shit I’ve ever seen.

  • Step Brothers

    Step Brothers

    Yeah, yeah. Well, not just the Cubes but we had Chris Daughtry, Jeff Probst, super chef Bobby Flay. I mean, it was insane. I mean, it was almost too much.

  • The Color of Money

    The Color of Money

    “Good for TV”

    Marty on autopilot, apparently. Odd to me that anybody would designate this as crass or commercial for Scorsese. Coming after a series of personal troubles and artistic triumphs, a movie about watching your back in a cutthroat business honestly strikes me as more personal than even something like Last Temptation of Christ. It’s also a film about performance, both in the athletic sense (reflected in Michael Ballhaus’s violent zooms and hurricane 360-degree tracking shots) and the metatextual,…

  • Knives Out

    Knives Out

    Not quite sure how this could leave anyone “wigless” (as this post suggests), nor do I fully understand those claiming it to be a Fedora Movie. Also think some people are making too big a deal out of the topical bon mots. There’s a self-awareness in its media-obsessed characters but I never got the feeling Johnson was alluding to the Last Jedi backlash or making some cogent political point. (Though I did appreciate him attempting a spectrum of conservatism, from…

  • The Last Temptation of Christ

    The Last Temptation of Christ

    I feel like the defining characteristic of an auteur in today’s age is their meticulousness, be it the anal-retentiveness of period production design or the unending fad with feature-length unbroken shots. But part of what makes Scorsese so endearing is that he embraces imperfections and spontaneity. The DIY energy of Mean Streets’ wheelchair dolly shots; the miraculous spark when Sport flicks a cigarette butt at Travis Bickle; the ADR and editing hiccups in The Departed; experimenting with 3D and de-aging…

  • School Ties

    School Ties

    Strange but broad ripoff of Dead Poets Society that concerns Jewish assimilation and antisemitism in postwar America. Even stranger is Matt Damon’s strong debut as a preppy, insecure bigot. It’s a testament to both Damon’s malleability as an actor and his careerist instincts that he was able to reinvent himself as a plucky underdog while the once-bigger names here became punchlines and also-rans. Hilarious to think that he was ever jealous of Brendan Fraser or Chris O’Donnell.

  • The Irishman

    The Irishman

    Has more in common with The Sopranos than Scorsese’s breakneck crime epics. On the way home, my mind raced back to the Sopranos pilot when Tony lays bare the central anxiety of the series: “Lately I’m gettin’ the feeling that I came in at the end. The best is over.” There’s no vicarious thrill to any of this. Flamboyant camera moves replaced by sedate compositions and dim, half-empty restaurants standing in for the raucous, demonically lit Copacanaba. Instead of Joe…

  • Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives

    Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives

    The restorative quality of this film is not unlike the balm provided by Talk Talk’s revered final albums. There’s a similarity not just in the buzzing, fertile worlds they conjure but in their precisely calibrated dynamics. Both are often discussed as having a calming, almost medicinal effect but they’re actually quite intense if you’re on their wavelength. Reminded me of Reichardt’s films in how it reorients my priorities and slows me down to think about my place in life and…

  • I Wanna Hold Your Hand

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand

    Extremely bizarre to me that this isn’t widely regarded as a canonical, first-ballot HOF debut. More impressive, I’d say, than (first-time producer) Spielberg’s Duel, to compare it with another wunderkind’s rookie go-around. There’s an impressive rigor and rearview nostalgia á la American Graffiti that elevates the unmitigated bedlam beyond Looney Tunes pastiche. And along with Grease, this introduced the sui generis quality of Eddie Deezen, whose adenoidal squawk is most familiar in the form of Mandark.

  • The Lighthouse

    The Lighthouse

    Dozed off a few times. Nice experience.

  • Tucker: The Man and His Dream

    Tucker: The Man and His Dream

    Heartbreaking parable that pointedly dovetails with Coppola’s embattled career. Features resplendent, honeyed images courtesy of Vittorio Storaro and one of Bridges’ best performances.