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  • Princess Cyd

    Princess Cyd

    ★★½

    Way more annoying than expected, though there's interesting detail in the character of Cyd herself, a "protected" pansexual sprite who may be some kind of angel (at one point she simply vanishes, leaving her aunt looking around in bewilderment). The central relationship has its moments, but e.g. it's unconvincing that Cyd chooses the moment when Aunt Miranda is giving her reading to go upstairs and smoke weed (she may be slightly vapid but she's always emotionally intelligent; she'd know better…

  • How Heavy This Hammer

    How Heavy This Hammer

    ★★★½

    Opening shot is misleading, classical music playing over a close-up of a sad-sack, middle-aged, obviously (or stereotypically) working-class bloke. Clearly going to be a case of the dignity reclaimed in everyday lives, Ken Loach-style - but it turns out the jowly, sad-looking bloke isn't staring soulfully into space after a hard day at the plant or whatever (it's not clear that he even has a job) but playing a video game, and it also turns out he's emotionally immature, prone…

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  • Margaret

    Margaret

    ★★★★★

    Held me spellbound for three hours, if nothing else (extended cut, fwiw). 25th HOUR-ish - New York movie, moral drama about Doing the Right Thing, symphonic score over jagged rhythms - also Desplechin-ish for the sweep and scale, but more ambitious than either: an epic of human disconnection, based around the fact that language is such an imperfect way of trying to connect - emotion is easier, but we lose it as we grow older ("It is Margaret you mourn…

  • Aloha

    Aloha

    ★★★★

    File with James L. Brooks' How Do You Know as a late-period rom-com that may seem inept because it dispenses with the usual pretence of realism (the magical setting helps, like it did, in a different way, in Almost Famous; maybe Crowe's peculiar sensibility needs the licence of an anything-goes milieu to really take flight). Myths and omens appear prominently. There's an emphasis on the touchy-feely - Danny McBride as Colonel "Fingers"; Bill Murray giving an impromptu massage - over…