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  • The Condemned

    The Condemned

    ½

    The bad guy from this was at the Royal Wedding. The bottom of Western society is truly dropping out.

  • Short Cuts

    Short Cuts

    ★★★★

    This captured a lot of what isn't spoken about in sitcoms and lesser movies about American family life, and speaks to the differences between the lower, middle and upper classes in a way that was just starting to be mined. Everybody is deeply flawed, and not even in the way "deeply flawed" can sometimes come off in movies. You don't come away even liking these people, but with a concern and maybe relation to the situations they find themselves in.…

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  • Collateral

    Collateral

    ★★★★★

    One element I haven't seen much in the praise of this film is actually how funny it is. There is a subtle but direct layer of levity, which is mostly used to ease the very palpable tension. I saw it twice in theaters and both times one particular line got a hearty response from the audience. Nearly all of it surrounds the chemistry of it's two leads, and the individual choices they made regarding their characters.

    Tom Cruise (in arguably…

  • Thief

    Thief

    ★★★★½

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    There's a ruthlessness to James Caan's performance as Frank that cuts through like one of his tools of the safe-cracking trade. It's 100% pure alpha-male bravado, that can be quickly brought down to earth. Whether it's by his best friend or his wife, there is as equally no fear to the emotion he brings. That's one thing (of many) about Michael Mann's work that is so engaging, is how he shows his protagonists (as well as his antagonists, too) balancing…