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SilentDawn has written 219 reviews for films during 2017.

  • Mudbound

    Mudbound

    ★★★★

    72

    An epic sliced down to two hours and some pocket change, and it hardly feels harshly truncated, emphasizing lean dynamics and painterly period detail over various asides. It would've excelled as a miniseries, but this will do.

  • The Boss Baby

    The Boss Baby

    ★★★

    54

    Frequently inspired, both in concept and animation style, and attuned to the beauty of imagination. Baldwin is hysterical.

  • The Greatest Showman

    The Greatest Showman

    ★★½

    49

    Revisionist, cloying, savior-y etc, but this is a thunderous spectacle with a few delights to discover. Matinee is mandatory. Be lazy and spend the afternoon with talented people being extra.

  • Personal Shopper

    Personal Shopper

    ★★★½

    67

    So preoccupied with its own spookiness that a sudden 'ooooooo' sound effect wouldn't feel out of place. Indebted to goofiness within gloomy states, both of communicative and emotional turmoil. Stewart continues to silence the pesky few who still assign her to Twilight.

  • Batman Returns

    Batman Returns

    ★★★★★

    95

    HELL HERE

    Ten reasons why Batman Returns is one of the great superhero films, and at the top of Batman's live-action oeuvre:

    1. Its artifice deliberately tightens its grasp on the main players, forming a psychopathic bond made literal by their constant encounters. It's as if they live right next door, and Burton has no time for world-building beyond his characters.

    2. Burton takes a trio of iconic characters and, simply, shows them as they are. An insecure man-bat,…

  • The Shallows

    The Shallows

    ★★★★½

    *Was a 95, now an 86*

    Pulp as a shimmering, visceral exploration of grief. The kind of film that thrills and moves in that 'under 90 minutes' fashion - an eight course meal in half the time. The ways it creates objectives for our heroine to solve and how they can be shifted or disturbed for our thrill is particularly satisfying.

  • The Bride of Frankenstein

    The Bride of Frankenstein

    ★★★★★

    94

    Terror extrapolated; a short life constructed out of fear, anguish, unwanted freedom. A Monster wanders through storybook forests, shadowed mansions, and mad laboratories only to discover love is unattainable beyond the confines of what we're given. Love is life, and on par with the course, it is the doctor and his wife that are spared - let loose as the towering house of creation explodes against the artifice of a stormy night. James Whale was a master of his…

  • Star Wars: The Last Jedi

    Star Wars: The Last Jedi

    ★★★★½

    90

    "You went straight to the dark."

    "But I didn't see you. Nothing from you...."

  • The Birdcage

    The Birdcage

    ★★★★½

    84

    Erasure and acceptance. A comedy of errors.

  • Call Me by Your Name

    Call Me by Your Name

    ★★★★★

    99

    Unequivocal sensory pleasure. Many will bask in Guadagnino's sybaritic paintings of brief and intense sexual/emotional satisfaction - practically entirely made up of peeks and scans, caresses and grazes - and gentle familial dynamics, and while it's an endless lake to swim in, its primary thrill for me was the depiction of meticulous surface: what bubbles up and blends into nature's constitution. Ramifications and boundless joys of Elio and Olliver's journey rest on the same sun-soaked playing field, encasing summer…

  • Black Mirror: San Junipero

    Black Mirror: San Junipero

    ★★★★

    77

    Toes in the sand - a work of sensory information in the realm of the believable, cast across dimensions in a fight for the reality that we yearn to let go.

  • Father Figures

    Father Figures

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    ??/100

    Forget The Last Jedi, there's a twist in Father Figures where the audience discovers that Ed Helms' character has been wearing glasses for 20 years for no other reason than 'fitting in'.

    He doesn't even need them.

    20 years.

    TWENTY. YEARS.

    This is played as an emotional moment.