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  • A Damsel in Distress

    A Damsel in Distress

    ★★★

    As replacements for Ginger Rogers in the Rogers/Astaire pairing go, Joan Fontaine is... definitely one of them, and that's about where she tops out. She's just nowhere near Fred Astaire's level as a dancer, and Astaire needed to be paired with someone who could match him flawlessly move for move: he was a generous partner, but was never one to "dance down" to someone else's level.

    Luckily, the movie is smart enough to give Fontaine less screen time than the…

  • The Italian Job

    The Italian Job

    ★★★

    I don't have beef against Mark Wahlberg generally, but I think he needs to be directed very carefully to avoid hitting a certain bro-ceiling he otherwise always hits (like, Anderson and Scorcese are the only directors to get truly great performances out of him), and that bro-ceiling absolutely limits The Italian Job, where he just seems sort of bored to be around more often than not.

    Beyond Wahlberg it's an enjoyable enough affair: Jason Statham and Mos Def and Seth…

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  • Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

    Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

    ★★★★½

    A triumph from pillar to post, Into the Spider-Verse is so improbable a success - an animated Spider-Man movie from a studio that has consistently fucked up both animated movies and Spider-Man movies based on a comic-nerdily dense idea that should be impenetrable to ninety-nine percent of the viewing audience - that it is hard to call it anything other than "remarkable," but that feels unfair simply because it is so good that just going with "remarkable" feels like giving…

  • The Grizzlies

    The Grizzlies

    ★★★★

    I know some people will be leery of this because there's a lot of white-saviourish stuff hanging around the film (which is inevitable because it's based on a true story, and that true story is about a white teacher from southern Canada introducing afterschool lacrosse to an Inuit community and the success of that program). But what's remarkable about the movie is how hard it constantly pushes back against the white saviour narrative. The script allows Ben Schnetzer's prepbro teacher…