• Collision Course

    Collision Course

    ★★★

    Leno's as goofy as you expect, the jokes are as racist as you expect, the cliches are as abundant as you expect, etc... but when your movie has a bitchin' 80s soundtrack, stuntmen diving out of exploding houses, multiple delightful car chases (accompanied by said bitchin' 80s soundtrack), and a deathblow to the villain that ranks among the most unexpected/satisfying in my years of watching bad action movies? I lose all sense of objectivity.

  • Roxanne

    Roxanne

    ★★★

    swings a little too wide in tone as it attempts to balance the broad comedy and the tender romance. you can tell this is a building block to Martin's superior LA Story (and, to a lesser extent, his play Picasso at the Lapin Agile). still, works nicely in fits and starts.

  • The Color of Money

    The Color of Money

    ★★★★½

    it’s my deepest regret in life that I was never taken under the wing of a legendary pool hustler.

    trying to decide which pool player is coolest:
    Newman near the end, rocking the glasses and suspenders… or Cruise in his Vince shirt, singing Warren Zevon, swinging his cue like a bo staff. very tough call imo.

    “light Scorsese” still smashes 95+% of movies ever made.

  • The Hustler

    The Hustler

    ★★★★½

    the bookend pool matches with Minnesota Fats are just stone cold perfection.

  • The Lady Eve

    The Lady Eve

    ★★★★★

    “let us be crooked, but never common.”

    all-timer script, all-timer performance.

  • A New Leaf

    A New Leaf

    ★★★★½

    "there's no such thing as genteel poverty." ain't that the goddamn truth, Harold.

  • Dashcam

    Dashcam

    ★★★½

    nihilistic, vulgar, and scatological revelry. my audible "oh fuck" utterances reached double digits. the first 15-20 minutes are undeniably (and intentionally) irritating, but the last hour is just such a fucking blast. Savage is 2-for-2.

    (note: those allergic to found footage should absolutely stay away, as the camerawork definitely gets Blair Witchy down the stretch.)

  • Beavis and Butt-Head Do the Universe

    Beavis and Butt-Head Do the Universe

    ★★★½

    precisely what you’d expect. which makes it a perfect, comforting watch on a shitty day.

  • The Man From Toronto

    The Man From Toronto

    cinema was a mistake

  • Cha Cha Real Smooth

    Cha Cha Real Smooth

    ★★★½

    isn't quite Shithouse, but Raiff clearly has a real gift for creating moments of emotional authenticity, especially when he allows shit to get messy. the movie feels first-drafty in early scenes of expositional banter, but once the characters are established, he lets them breathe, he lets them fuck up, he lets them learn.

    also not convinced, like with Shithouse, that he's figured out exactly when to end his movies... but he's also made two good-to-very-good movies before he could legally…

  • Mad God

    Mad God

    ★★★★

    feels like it should only be viewed either at a midnight movie screening or in a modern art museum.

    no clue how to grade something like this, but the animation, production design, and imagination on display are really extraordinary. if stoned college me had seen this, it doubtlessly would've been a formative experience.

  • Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore

    Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore

    completely impenetrable. imagine starting LOST on Season 5 and trying to follow. at least LOST had charismatic performances and visuals that weren't bathed in murk.

    that said, when the visuals here are, well, visible... Yates still has the capacity to create the occasional moment that hums, that oh-so-briefly transports you back to that brief period when his Harry Potter movies were emotionally engaging and contained characters more memorable than "Blond Lady," "Mustache Guy," "Small Woman in Hat," and "Josh Gad…