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  • Hostiles

    Hostiles

    ★★★★★

    100

    Infused within those iconic stars and stripes are nearly 300 years of pain. Pain of the immeasurable sort, unleashed on practically every walk of life; the likes of Natives, Colonists and Immigrants have all seen their fair share. Yet amidst all that pain, what America has yet to experience in metaphysical droves is unity. Sure, it arrives in fleeting spurts, often cultivated in the aftermath of tragedy. Even so, as pain occasionally acts as a conduit for unity, it…

  • Inside Llewyn Davis

    Inside Llewyn Davis

    ★★★★★

    98

    Just three chords is all it takes, to separate string-based artistry from a vehicle for healing and a conduit for perpetual emptiness. Unfortunately for the film’s titular character, Llewyn - and myself - it’s the latter. Self-imposed isolation and monetary misfortune - are all artists destined for it? As an aspiring patron of the arts, am I destined for it? Aided by the brilliance of Oscar Isaac, the Coens have crafted a revelatory exploration of an artist’s fractured soul,…

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  • A Star Is Born

    A Star Is Born

    ★★★½

    65

    Rapid Review No. 79

    Attempted deep cuts at the divide between authenticity and reward comprise the core of A Star Is Born’s chronological ethos, yet even the staggering talents of Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga fail to make up for the film’s failure in achieving either. When the shimmering spotlight fades and vocalists rest, the narrative does little to prevent itself from devolving into a glorified Lifetime Original with good acting - though describing its contents as “original” would…

  • Inside Llewyn Davis

    Inside Llewyn Davis

    ★★★★★

    98

    “I’m tired. I thought I just needed a night’s sleep but it’s more than that.” 

    Upon my first viewing of this film, I perceived the character of Llewyn Davis as someone I admired, yet never wanted to become. Ripped apart by tragedy, and scorned by the art he holds so dear. Him and I share similar passions: we simply want to make impactful art, and have it generate enough cash to live a sustainable life. I never wanted to…

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  • American Animals

    American Animals

    ★★★★

    83

    Rapid Review No. 75

    In a scintillating concoction of modern dramatics and illegality-riddled eccentricity, Bart Layton has crafted something beautiful with American Animals. Equal parts true-story biopic and crude documentary, each sequence of American-Made lunacy sparkles with a special flare unseen in most genre contemporaries. Seamless transitions between contradictory recollections and the riveting adaptations of said confessionals are no less than a spectacular feat of editing; each frame glides along with the fluidity of an owl in mid-flight. Unfortunately,…

  • Thor: Ragnarok

    Thor: Ragnarok

    ★★★½

    72

    Rapid Review No. 77

    Even as I drift deeper into cinephilia, progressively educating myself on celluloid’s all-timers, simultaneously developing a disdain for all things MCU, Ragnarok has yet to lose its pitch-perfect hilarity after four complete viewings. While it certainly lacks in the realm of compelling villainy, Waititi and Co. make up for the narrative’s rarified shortcomings with stellar wit and excellent character development, as this film singlehandedly resurrects and redefines Thor’s standing in the MCU. After two cinematic…