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  • Floating Clouds

    Floating Clouds

    ★★★★

    So perversely structured that it's practically an anti-melodrama, with its epic progression of incident—rape, abortion, philandering, a murder of passion, etc—all absorbed into a peripatetic haze. Characters move around multiple locations, their paths crossing in paired meetings, but never in sustained durations; truncated scenes continually fade in and out of each other (the pinnacle being the American soldier's visit, which interrupts the lovers' meeting, fades out into an exterior, and then circles back to the same scene, only later in…

  • Another Country

    Another Country

    ★★★★

    Impressive, though it's difficult to articulate precisely what elevates this above other such period dramas—the measured, distanced tone is certainly a part of it. Frame story adds a sense of portent, while situating the events in the remoteness of memory, and the shifting locations of that opening scene—transitioning from the shot of the bridge to Moscow in the 1980s to shots of the boarding school in the 1930s, etc—add scale and underline perspective ("fame" or "infamy"). Emphasis on ritual and…

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  • Dunkirk

    Dunkirk

    ★★½

    Firmly split on this one, which seems about right given that Nolan is simultaneously over-praised and undervalued (though I consider myself a partisan of his). But there really is no getting past the gulf between its staggering, brilliant conceit—which attempts to do no less than to demonstrate, with increasing temporal and spatial immediacy, the parallel planes upon which a war is fought; to enfold the immediate ground-level experience of those events within a larger historical understanding of one of the…

  • Primer

    Primer

    ★★★★½

    90/100

    Man, do you wanna watch Primer? I haven't seen it since later this afternoon.