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  • Valkyrie

    Valkyrie

    ★½

    Intrigued to rewatch it after extensive Christopher McQuarrie podcasting as the genesis of his creative relationship with Tom Cruise. Still a monumentally boring, dry and recitative re-enactment free of tension, theme or stakes that I suspect got smoothed out somewhere in the process. Let’s put it this way: Who’s the creative force behind the scenes with whom Cruise has regularly collaborated for a decade? (Hint: It’s not Bryan Singer.)

  • Mission: Impossible - Fallout

    Mission: Impossible - Fallout

    ★★★★½

    Eminently more enjoyable after listening to Christopher McQuarrie's spoiler podcast about the film — not only because of the happy accidents and hilarious anecdotes behind some of the film's most delightful moments, but because McQuarrie is quick to mention by name ... well, damn near everyone whose name appears in the opening credits. It's refreshing for McQuarrie to cop to what many directors are too proud / scared / ashamed / stupid to admit about a great deal blockbuster filmmaking…

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  • Wind River

    Wind River

    ½

    Anyone proffering serious comparisons of Taylor Sheridan to Cormac McCarthy, the Coen Brothers or your preferred master of the bleak, noirish human condition is a delusional fool. Sheridan has written exactly one good movie ("Hell or High Water," in which casting and direction clearly made all the difference) and, thanks to the work of Denis Villeneuve and Roger Deakins on "Sicario," deluded people into thinking he wrote another one.

    "Wind River," Sheridan's third film as a screenwriter, is also his…

  • Congo

    Congo

    ★★★

    Amy. Make. OK. Gorilla. Movie. Better. If. You. Have. Raindrop. Drink.