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  • The Amusement Park

    The Amusement Park

    ★★★★

    A Lutheran church wants a movie about ageism and hires the guy who directed Night of the Living Dead. He makes a highly effective and empathetically disturbing film that made me think twice about how I may be unintentionally treating elder people almost 50 years later, and the church buries the movie because it offended them.

    If that's not everything wrong with organized religion, I don't know what is

  • The Booksellers

    The Booksellers

    ★★★

    I went to a bookstore this weekend. The first I have been to since covid. The rush of being back in one was so strong and I didn't realize how much I missed them.

    Then I saw this documentary was on Prime. As a movie, this is very by-the-numbers. It's informative, but not as lyrical or poetic as it wants to be. Some of this filmmaking is indecipherable from a corporate training video.

    But it's a movie passionate about books, and it advocates strongly for more representative voices in the book world, and for that it's worth watching

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  • Hell House LLC

    Hell House LLC

    ★★★★

    If I unashamedly have a guilty pleasure, it is HHLLC. Found footage is like standup comedy - either it works brilliantly or it's like watching a sad attempt at entertainment that's completely inauthentic. The low budget can either add to the creepiness or expose the filmmakers as talentless frauds.

    The narrative structure in here works so well for me. The footage of the crew turning the haunted hotel into an attraction goes forward while the interviews and faux news footage…

  • The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It

    The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It

    ★★½

    Losing James Wan and especially replacing him with the director of the derivatively subpar Curse of La Llorona is a decision with self fulfilling results which are noticeable throughout this whole movie. Wan is a master of showing you the horror without cheating, with shots panning a whole room, building anticipation until the horror is revealed. Somehow Wan's scares in his scenes are both inventive and inevitable, making his movies fun.

    Replacement director Michael Chaves likes quick cuts, CGI and…