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Christopher has written 38 reviews for films rated ★★½ .

  • Blinded by the Light

    Blinded by the Light

    ★★½

    A chilling portrait of the ways young people can be seduced into various cults with minimal effort and maximal denim. But even as the Boss casts a long, terrifying shadow, the crazed fervor of his followers still pales in comparison to asshole racists. Now let's dance in Luton.

  • Widows

    Widows

    ★★½

    I feel as if WIDOWS is half a very good movie and half a very bad movie, often within the same scene. But I've learned to never trust my feelings, lest they result in some strange, pseudo-comic plot twists in my life.

  • Fast & Furious

    Fast & Furious

    ★★½

    The scenes of Paul "Brian O'Connor" Walker in the FBI do absolutely nothing for me. Knowing this series has a representation as having gotten really big in terms of its action and set pieces, I feel like this entry takes a confident step in that direction. A lot of it doesn't work for me, but the film is just character-focused enough to keep me interested.

  • Monsters University

    Monsters University

    ★★½

    A breezy story that's told with an efficiency which is both technically impressive and also kinda distancing, at least for me.

  • Pokémon Detective Pikachu

    Pokémon Detective Pikachu

    ★★½

    The Pokémon does not look at you, so much as through you. The fur sometimes glistens, sometimes deadens into flat, uninspired fuzz. As the jokes fly, fast and furious, one guffaws (as one certainly might), but is the laughter for the action onscreen? Or is it more sinister? Directed inward, at some self-respect which dwindles at a rate comparable to the polar ice caps?

    A child of five points in wonder at the magical world of the story, amazed to…

  • Nintendo Quest

    Nintendo Quest

    ★★½

    Nice interstitials. Also, the History Channel should consider a similarly formatted, episodic reality television show, for video game enthusiasts.

  • Atari: Game Over

    Atari: Game Over

    ★★½

    The documentary isn't too long and only really starts to dig into its compelling thesis toward the end of the film, so GAME OVER is a little more slight than I would have liked, but still an interesting excavation of recent pop culture history.

  • Pooka!

    Pooka!

    ★★½

    I do like the Pooka song and dance! The rest is a substandard after-school special about self-destructive behavior. Which, to be fair, is my favorite kind of after-school special.

  • Split

    Split

    ★★½

    If James McAvoy's performance had been the director of the entire film, I think we would have gotten something more comfortably hammy, exploitative, and weird... "Better" in the lowbrow sense of the word. But with our dear friend Mr. Shyamalan's self-serious hand, we get something a little more trite, a little more unintentionally insensitive, and a lotta-more pretentious. So all I can do is sigh, 'cause it's like, I wanna be pretentious ALL THE WAY or in the gutter ALL THE WAY, not eating sandwiches calmly with the Beast at the zoo, mildly bored and annoyed.

  • Cam

    Cam

    ★★½

    Muddled. But not without its perverse pleasures.

  • Paranormal Activity

    Paranormal Activity

    ★★½

    Revisiting this for the first time in about ten years. Why does it work? The central couple plays their natural couple dynamic very well, which is more important than their ability to play horror-related stuff. I think we, as an audience, want to buy the monotonous story more than the scary story so that the horror punctures more dramatically. Why was my attention wandering? There's not much of a story here. The paranormal activity is mostly something that happens to…

  • Molly's Game

    Molly's Game

    ★★½

    MOLLY’S GAME is Aaron Sorkin’s feature film directorial debut, and though I’m no Sorkin completist, it’s not difficult to see that the real-life account of Molly Bloom has a lot of Sorkin’s trademarks. Not just his fast-paced dialogue and rhythmic “walk and talks” (although there are fewer of the latter here), but also Sorkin’s particular obsession with a certain kind of flawed American genius. And although the typical surface-level Sorkin delights apply to MOLLY’S GAME, it’s too bad that it…