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  • OSS 117: Cairo, Nest of Spies

    OSS 117: Cairo, Nest of Spies

    ★★★

    Jean Dujardin has a powerful smile.

  • Surviving Desire

    Surviving Desire

    ★★★

    Hal Hartley is one of the great American independents still working today, his consistent portrayal of human relationships is what keeps him at the top of his game. Though I wasn't as invested in Surviving Desire as his other films, there is still an understated portrayal of socially awkward love relationships, age-gap relationships and the emotional fragility of humans no matter their age or vocation. Poetic and sensitive, as always carrying metaphoric qualities that often resonate within Hal Hartley's work. Intellectual dialogue is probably his trademark and it is often not natural or real even but it seems to fit.

  • The Book of Life

    The Book of Life

    ★★★

    The most experimental and lo-fi Hal Hartley film I've seen to date, though it doesn't always work it does add to the feel of the plot, a deliberating Jesus, his assistant Magdalena and Satan slugging out in a down-town New York City hotel. Thomas Jay Ryan may actually be Satan, he appears born to play him, cast aside - like Henry Fool - too radical, too human, too anti establishment. PJ Harvey has a mercurial aura and Martin Donovan is…

  • Species

    Species

    ★★½

    I did attempt to watch this a long time ago and for whatever reason, I never finished it... it is better than what I remember... Forest Whittaker is great and Michael Madsen is... himself. Alfred Molina is an underrated actor and Ben Kinglsey's accent is terrible in this. Still... something... an easy watch, daft science fiction with a note of eroticism.

  • The Nightingale

    The Nightingale

    ★★★★

    An atrocity. A powerful, brilliantly made, travesty of rape, racism, and violence. Vengeance. Justice. Many powerful themes, acted out so well and from a great up and coming female director. Not for the faint-hearted though as it does push the audience to boundaries that aren't often touched upon in contemporary cinema. Devastating. Intense.

    By no means nice or soft around the edges, The Nightingale will (or has) cause controversy for its themes but these stories exist and they remind us…

  • Don't Be Like Brenda

    Don't Be Like Brenda

    Horrendous to the point of unintended comedy. Seen at the BFI archive exhibition in Bradford.

  • The Lincoln Lawyer

    The Lincoln Lawyer

    ★★★

    I love Matthew McConaughey, and though this isn't his best, it is very watchable.

  • The Fear of God: 25 Years of The Exorcist

    The Fear of God: 25 Years of The Exorcist

    ★★★

    An interesting look at a monumental film in film history, though personally not a fan of The Exorcist, this has inspired me to rewatch it. When I watched it as a kid I did not like it, but I am open to revisiting now I am more aware of its cultural impact and production issues. Mark Kermode is pretty good most of the time too.

  • Parasite

    Parasite

    ★★★★★

  • The King

    The King

    ★★½

    The King could have been one of Netflix's better films, but the oddly paced and disappointing plot has cast it to complete mediocrity. Killing Mendelsohn off far too early is a waste of one of the better castings the film offers, though Chalamet and Pattinson are decent still. Could have been better is all I can say.

  • Silver Bullets

    Silver Bullets

    ★★★

    I love low budget American indie films, Swanberg and Sheil are pretty prolific in their own right. This isn't the greatest but it's more experimental than usual and Kate Lyn Sheil is an independent gem.

    The horrors of love.

  • eXistenZ

    eXistenZ

    ★★★★

    eXistenZ: A Game Everybody is Already Playing

    David Cronenberg‘s 1999 science fiction horror amalgamation eXistenZ is a strange beast composed of teeth, gristle, bone and flesh as it explores transhumanism, audience behaviour and reality. This incendiary and sensual ‘ugly cousin’ of sorts to the Wachowskis’ The Matrix offers a foreboding glimpse into potential new levels of existence introduced by VR gaming. Whilst the Wachowskis focused on human survival and ‘self residual’ imagery with The Matrix, Cronenberg was more concerned with…