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  • The Chaser

    The Chaser

    ★★

    This film starts off at a decent pace, but then slams on the brakes about 40 mins in and never recovers. It's probably the worst case of a film coming to a baffling, screeching halt I've ever seen. Character motivations are also murky, the protagonist is an unlikable idiot, and many major plot points are weirdly nonsensical. Added to all that, the direction is pretty flat, with the fight choreography in particular being dull and confusing.

  • Sympathy for Lady Vengeance

    Sympathy for Lady Vengeance

    ★★★½

    Lighter and kinder in tone than the rest of the Vengeance trilogy, this film is nonetheless as creatively told as Park's other work. He makes such weird and idiosyncratic choices, it's always fun trying to work out where he's going with an idea. Here, his narrative approach - involving a lot of time hopping - ultimately makes the story feel a bit scattered and unfocused, but it's still interesting enough despite that.

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  • Annihilation

    Annihilation

    ★★½

    As someone who wasn't nearly as impressed with Ex Machina as everyone else seemed to be, I went into Annihilation with pretty low expectations. Well, the film managed to meet almost exactly those pretty low expectations. Alex Garland's direction is uninspired, and his script is limp. Things aren't helped by the performances of varying quality (some of the cast seem to have taken acting lessons at a robot factory), and the Sy-Fy Channel grade CGI. The premise is interesting and…

  • The Florida Project

    The Florida Project

    ★★★★½

    There's a strange magic to Sean Baker's depiction of desparate lives in budget motels near Disneyland. While the underlying story is undeniably depressing, the film is somehow also brimming with joy: it's bright, charming, and popping with energy and colour - a thick lick of tropical paint glooped over a dismal facade. Just about everything about the film is magnificent, with wonderful performances across the board (including a surprising cameo from Sandy Kane).