Persephone has written 25 reviews for films rated ★★★★★ during 2021.

  • Excision

    Excision

    ★★★★★

    Forget getting under my skin, this movie tears my skin off and wears it while desperately trying to reassemble my spilled organs back into the shape of a person. Even the second time around, knowing what was coming for me, this movie is still one of the most harrowing and upsetting horror movies I’ve ever seen by the sheer force of its empathy for this young girl fucking begging everyone around her to notice her cry for help until it is too late. Easily my top 3 horror movies of all time, maybe my number one.

  • The Matrix Resurrections

    The Matrix Resurrections

    ★★★★★

    Lana Wachowski pulling a Charlie Kaufman on The Matrix and tbh it’s never been better. Reclaims a mythic story in the American pop culture canon from the public back to one of the two women who made it, and it absolutely owns the sentimentalist anime it is at heart. Had a blast with this one in a way I haven’t felt about a blockbuster action movie in ages.

  • Goodbye Forever Party

    Goodbye Forever Party

    ★★★★★

    Broke my fuckin’ heart. Really felt that one as it ran me over. No one does it like Jonni Phillips

  • The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover

    The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover

    ★★★★★

    Turns out, alongside being a masterpiece, this is an immaculate first date film. Nothing in the world like kissing pretty girls who taste good and have good taste 😌

  • Fingers

    Fingers

    ★★★★★

    A full-tilt, John Waters crime-nightmare of self-help radicalization and the love between an unhinged gay torturer-for-hire and his dog. A rube-goldbergian cockup between obsessive-compulsive white womanhood, meek and feral white masculinities, the bloody hands of capital, and all the delirious self-delusions therein. Uproariously funny, deliciously savage, and so delightfully out of its goddamn mind that it loops back around to truth. 

    This movie is so good they literally invented a new gay guy: a terrifying, endearing little man halfway between Joe…

  • Nightmare Alley

    Nightmare Alley

    ★★★★★

    Whomst among us was not born for the role of a feral little guy exploited into biting the heads off of chickens for the consumption of a jeering crowd and the pittance of a cage. As an autistic commie trans woman in this essay I will—

  • The Final Exit of the Disciples of Ascensia

    The Final Exit of the Disciples of Ascensia

    ★★★★★

    Devastating, cathartic, beautiful, and profoundly hopeful. One of the most moving films I saw this year, or any year.

  • We Need to Do Something

    We Need to Do Something

    ★★★★★

    Emotionally grisly horror about being trapped in the family bathroom for days on end with your profoundly abusive father while who the fucking fuck knows is happening in the unseen world outside. 

    The Shining meets The VVitch meets The Mist in a similar torn vein to Excision. The tension between domestic violence and witchcraft shouldn’t work but it bites your fucking head off and screams into the stump. An open wound boiling with fever. 

    Excellent performances and direction anchor what…

  • Benedetta

    Benedetta

    ★★★★★

    Benedetta more than effectively utilized girl power, both on 17th century French Catholics and also on me and my gf in the theater. She gaslit gatekept and girlbossed her way into getting some godhead from the pussy of Christ. A modern miracle from start to finish.


    My favorite film of 2021 alongside Titane.

  • Bacurau

    Bacurau

    ★★★★★

    An imperfect film to be sure, but any movie this bold, experimental, and ambitious demands to be seen. And I will always love a movie centered on a tight-knit indigenous community and a gang of indigenous queer outlaws wrecking shop on a bunch of unhinged colonizers who think they can slaughter with impunity and that human life is a game. I love to fucking see it.

  • Gozu

    Gozu

    ★★★★★

    The Charlie Brown of yakuza assassination attempts experiences the Sisyphean football kick trying to locate the guy he tried to kill through the maze of a Lynchian prefecture, experiencing increasingly feverish visions of breast milk, anal sex, and cum-drooling cow-men until finding the hot woman his friend became and giving in to his desire to fuck her.

    If it’s a trans metaphor, it’s clumsy but earnest, strange, funny, and pretty goddamn hot. 

    This is motherfucking cinema, baby.

  • Inside

    Inside

    ★★★★★

    The gruesome, grisly mutilations of motherhood with one of my favorite final moments in any film. If you can bear how viscerally brutal it is—and it was a lot even for me—it’s well worth your time.

    I am choosing to forgive the awful 2000s kitsch of the cgi fetus shots and the edgy as hell opening credits