Philbert Dy

Professional film critic, amateur semiotician, chronicler of Filipino Cinema.

Favorite films

  • Crank
  • Guilty of Romance
  • The Thing
  • Iskalawags

Recent activity

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  • Penance

    ★★★½

  • Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers

    ★★★

  • The Black House

    ★★★

  • Jackass 4.5

    ★★★½

Pinned reviews

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  • Happy Hour

    Happy Hour

    ★★★★★

    Spend enough time with people, and you think you know them. This is one of the greatest follies of being human: the arrogance of believing that by observing another person, one can fully understand the entirety of their existence. We make assumptions based on observable routine: she likes her coffee this way, he walks with this gait, they talk in some manner. And from those bits and pieces of visible behavior, from the scraps of half-remembered conversation, we form some…

  • Cleaners

    Cleaners

    ★★★★★

    It's worth talking about the process: Glenn Barit and his team shot an entire movie. Then, they took eight frames out of every second and printed them out. Then they photocopied those printouts in black and white. And they took highlighters and physically colored in certain sections of every frame. And then they scanned those images and assembled them back into a movie.

    What we get feels like a memory. It is easy enough to dismiss it in the abstract…

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  • Penance

    Penance

    ★★★½

    Functionally, this works as an anthology series that just happens to have common elements between the stories. The first four episodes look into the very different adult lives of the four witnesses to a brutal crime, each one of them having a pretty different reaction to the trauma. The fifth episode goes back to the crime, following the victim's mother as she follows a lead and discovers a connection to her past.

    The thing is, I ended not caring much…

  • Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers

    Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers

    ★★★

    Basically functions as an unannounced sequel to Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, which is kind of cool. Doesn't quite have the hardscrabble gumshoe feel, but it keeps the general tenor of the setting: a world where toons co-exist with humans. It doesn't feel like the achievement that Roger Rabbit does, but it's all reasonably clever, updating the world to look into the foibles of modern celebrity.

    So it's not bad, but that's about as much enthusiasm as I can muster up…

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  • Parasite

    Parasite

    ★★★★★

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

    Update: Now in video form

    There is a house on a hill, and there are people in it. And they're nice, but not really. There is a garden, and there they get a lot of sunlight. And it is nice, and they get to sleep there sometimes.

    There is a house underground, and there are people in it. And they're the first to tell you that they're not very nice: they're con-men, grifters, forgers and imposters. They sit among stink…

  • Burrow

    Burrow

    ★★★★½

    Yeah, this is really cute. But also: it latches on to something profoundly human. This is a little cartoon about feeling inadequate, about the anxiety one feels when first striking out on one's own. And it's about how it's usually okay to ask for help. It can be difficult to ask for help sometimes, because that means showing people that you don't know how to do something. But hey, that's okay: we're all just fumbling around in one way or another.

    Just lovely all around.