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  • [REC]

    [REC]

    ★★½

    Despite all the effusive praise around these parts, I definitely wasn't blown away with this one. The vast majority of scares occurred exactly when expected, with nowhere near enough misdirection and strategic blocking of shots to create tension for me. With this being a Spanish production, I can understand the thought process behind creating a room full of occultish set decoration and expecting it to terrify fellow catholics, but the effect was nonexistent for this atheist. If the characters had been at all noteworthy, perhaps a chunk of its acclaim would have been deserved, but, alas…

  • The Westerner

    The Westerner

    ★★★★

    Able to deftly pivot from grit to humor as needed and featuring some great, nuanced antagonist work by Walter Brennan and a Cooper working within the sweet spot of his range, The Westerner is an oft-overworked pre-war gem.

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  • Hell or High Water

    Hell or High Water

    ★★★★

    No twists. No betrayals. No games. Just two protagonists, both flawed and virtuous, seeking justice in an unjust, dying world and losing themselves in the process. Great stuff here.

  • Blade Runner 2049

    Blade Runner 2049

    ★★★★½

    Despite his best efforts, Jared Leto couldn't manage to ruin this movie. THAT'S how good it is. It manages to recapture the sober aesthetic and atmosphere of the original to beautiful effect, but I'd argue that this one was far more intellectual than its predecessor. Whereas Ridley Scott's masterpiece was essentially an action movie with subtext, this one was a subtextual movie with a few bits of action here and there. All the thematic stuff about connection and separation and…