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  • The Rules of the Game

    The Rules of the Game

    ★★★★★

    There are some movies I'm scared to write about because of the Absurd challenge they represent. Some films are just too big. 2001: A Space Odyssey, , The Godfather, Citizen Kane, Once Upon a Time in the West--What could I possibly have to say about these marvels that hasn't already been said a thousand times and far more eloquently than I ever could? Jean Renoir's 1939 masterwork, The Rules of the Game, certainly falls into this impossible category. I despair…

  • Manhunter

    Manhunter

    ★★★★★

    Focus. Catch the scent. Immerse yourself.

    Do you see?

    While Michael Mann may refuse to directly quote Nietzsche, he isn't above evoking him. Manhunter is about gazing into the abyss. It's about dancing with Devils. It's about changing yourself. It's about the intoxication of becoming. Manhunter is a film about seeing. Manhunter's a film about reflections. It's about mirrors and images. Seeing makes dreams live. Seeing is the primary sensory intake of all monsters.

    Manhunter is about delusions. It's about…

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  • Blow Out

    Blow Out

    ★★★★★

    I haven't written anything about Brian De Palma and that's surprising. Ten years ago I was obsessed with his films. I studied every one with complete fascination. I had most of them memorized. I bought every book about him that I could get my hands on and took extensive notes from them, as if I were his biographer. I compiled my own De Palma scrapbook with interviews, film reviews, concept art, and storyboards. De Palma is the reason I'm not…

  • La Notte

    La Notte

    ★★★★★

    How do I put this delicately? La Notte is simply the finest film I have ever seen. I have reached this point after much careful consideration. The mastery of the film is inescapable and the conclusion I have come to feels inevitable. La Notte is a perfect example of the cinema's ultimate grammar. It's the best film in the whole world.

    La Notte is a film of reflections, of internalized deterioration made visibly external through false extensions of our composite…