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SilentDawn has written 46 reviews for films rated ★★ .

  • Read It and Weep

    Read It and Weep

    ★★

    34

    Iñárritu turned this into Birdman and no one can convince me otherwise.

  • Noelle

    Noelle

    ★★

    37

    Sub-standard Christmas movie that alternates between the North Pole and Phoenix, Arizona. Bill Hader and Shirley Maclaine are fun, and the colors are gloriously exaggerated, but this is mostly embarrassing. Best part is how Christmas films are *still* stuck with the subplot of technology taking over old-time traditions.

  • The King

    The King

    ★★

    35

    Timothée Chalamet took one look at David Michôd's failing career and said "hey, mind if I join?"

    Abysmal. Only interesting element is Robert Pattinson strolling in like he just woke up from the nap of a century in a decrepit tomb in transylvania.

  • A Simple Favor

    A Simple Favor

    ★★

    39

    I wish this was less in love with itself for doing the bare minimum, especially when recent films of both elevated sleaze (Gone Girl, Passion) and tried and true homage (A Deadly Adoption) are more confident in every aspect. This is all show and no bite. The central dynamic is nice, but I've seen better camp, and better movies, on Lifetime.

  • The Dead Don't Die

    The Dead Don't Die

    ★★

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

    38

    Usually I find Jim Jarmusch's excursions into genre fairly impenetrable, but it would've been so easy for him to knock a Zombie flick right out of the park. The ingredients are all here: a sturdy, dead-pan cast, gorgeous day-for-night photography, his slow-as-molasses pacing reckoning with both genre and the arrival of the inevitable. And to be sure, there is some of that in The Dead Don't Die. Chloë Sevigny yearning to join her undead grandma as bodies press their…

  • Apostle

    Apostle

    ★★

    40

    Unlike Midsommar, which at least counteracted its standard elements at many pivotal moments, this Gareth Evans film is both boring *and* unremarkable! A slow, slow-burn leading to a "shocking" finale that mostly just made me wish I was watching something with the verve to tell its story rather than walk me through the motions. Certainly well-crafted, but you could feel Evans the gonzo action maestro ready to burst out of his seat.

  • Halloween

    Halloween

    ★★

    34

    Fuck, I wish I liked this more. The first forty minutes or so are full of nasty, grimy filth that nevertheless reveals truths about class and mental health, especially in how it relates to education. It's not necessarily well-written or given room to breathe, but it lays claim to its own territory. The image of a young Michael wearing the iconic 'Shape' mask is stupid but offers satisfaction when connected to the second-half, with all that trauma and violence…

  • The Wrecking Crew

    The Wrecking Crew

    ★★

    35

    A terrible spy-comedy that hardly seems to be a movie, instead being a series of lame and reductive gags as connective tissue. Bright spot is Sharon Tate, of course, and the fact that it's Chuck Norris' screen debut!

  • The Final Girls

    The Final Girls

    ★★

    39

    It isn't a requirement to make 'meta' concepts out of the relationship between reality and the world of the movie in order to explore grief, especially when the campfire stories of Jason Voorhees or Cropsy or Angela have their own immediate traumas worth reconciling and parsing through. The Final Girls doesn't think to respect the legitimacy of slashers, instead opting to pop in and offer its own pleasures, which are cutesy and, at times, melancholic. The entire cast is…

  • Ocean's Eight

    Ocean's Eight

    ★★

    33

    Just when I thought this self-serious cardboard reboot couldn't get any worse, James Corden shows up.

  • Intruder

    Intruder

    ★★

    37

    With leading makeup and gore effects by Greg Nicotero, you expect the best out of the bloodshed, and it's there alright, especially a vicious razor saw kill and a death involving a garbage compressor, but Intruder moves way too slowly for a 1989 slasher, stuck in the past in the worst possible way. It embodies a mediocre early 80s kill-fest more than anything. Some fun to be had, mostly with the setting, but the rest is a bore.

  • StageFright: Aquarius

    StageFright: Aquarius

    ★★

    40

    My first Michele Soavi film resulted in a mostly uneventful experience. StageFright is tonally clashing at every moment, cascading out of claustrophobic spaces, synth parading through its build-up and release tactics, which is utilized too often in the last-half. A few gruesome, and artful, dissections refuse to meld with the often unbearable characters, and the theatrical setting is hardly explored, quickly growing repetitive.