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  • Blade Runner 2049

    Blade Runner 2049

    ★★★½

    It's a shame this movie had to have a plot. It so badly wants to be just a loose collection of concepts strung together by rain-drowned dystopian imagery, a three-hour mood. Its best moments are dreamy extrapolations of abstract sci-fi thoughts. What if a hologram wanted to feel? What if a robot dreamed it was a human? What does it mean to make a memory?

    But there has to be a story. Being about something means that it has to…

  • Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

    Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

    ★½

    I watched this a while ago and forgot to log it, which is maybe the only review I need to write. Anyway it's bad. The idea of "found families" is really compelling to me (usually in queer art but I'll take all comers) and it's pathetically squandered here. I think this movie thinks it's probing the insecurities and anxieties of its cast but it can't come up with anything to say about any of them. The fact that it separates…

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  • Captain America: Civil War

    Captain America: Civil War

    The real battle royale this summer isn't between Batman and Superman, or between Captain America and Iron Man, or between the X-Men and the purple guy. It's over the soul of blockbuster cinema. Marvel has clearly staked its claim, and DC announced its own perspective rather loudly a few months ago. The latter made a film which, while admittedly convoluted, was at least a stab at something grandiose and new. It didn't make logical sense, but it felt like it…

  • Cloverfield

    Cloverfield

    ★★★★★

    Still the best film ever made about 9/11 -- about the 21st century -- Cloverfield is an unparalleled expressionist masterpiece. People talked about how it ripped its "don't show the monster" technique from Jaws, but it's closer to Lovecraft than anything else. Furthermore, it's an idea wholly indebted to the film's own era. We're afraid of what we don't know, what we can't see. Films like War of the Worlds come close to touching on post-9/11 anxieties so potently, but…