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  • Word Is Out

    Word Is Out

    Undoubtedly a landmark, though this seems so trapped in its moment -- slanted towards heteronormative assimilation and respectability in the wake of the Anita Bryant controversy that it seems to have been made in response to. Still, a valuable portrait of two wildly different generations of queer people just before the death of Harvey Milk, Cruising, AIDS, Reagan, etc.

  • Anaconda

    Anaconda

    ★★★★

    Starring Jon Voight AS the Man from Deep River

    Is 'boat invasion' a genre?? I kinda love how Llosa and Co. smuggle a legitimately clever home invasion plot into their silly killer snake movie, crafting the sort of irresistible genre mishmash that probably made at least one Italian director mad for not thinking of it first. As campy (and strangely Tommy Wiseaunian) as Voight's performance is, it almost sinks the film -- can you imagine this with someone like David…

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  • This Gun for Hire

    This Gun for Hire

    ★★★★★

    Nothing bores me more than the sort of phony macho posturing that fills so many noir films, which is why this -- starring Alan Ladd as a limp-wristed, cat-loving asexual hitman -- was such a surprise. That this also features multiple song-and-sorcery routines by a rubber-clad Veronica Lake, a weasely Laird Cregar, and a pen-gun-toting evil chairman of the board has me convinced that it was pulled straight from the most feverishly fun depths of the wartime pulp consciousness. Kind of amazing.

  • It's Alive III: Island of the Alive

    It's Alive III: Island of the Alive

    ★★★★

    Four mysteries of the Cohenverse:

    Is this the most inexplicable trilogy ever made?
    Why are the mutant babies so jacked?
    How did Karen Black get that awful hair and wind up working at a fake Miami punk club?
    How much of the budget went to hairpieces (I counted at least three)?

    I need to see this with an audience.