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SilentDawn has written 163 reviews for films rated ★★★½ .

  • Final Exam

    Final Exam

    ★★★½

    63

    Ultimately very satisfying because the cast is a bunch of frat bros. It takes awhile to get going, but what's fascinating is the utter contempt it has for its characters, and how we resonate with said characters affects the ruthlessness of the eventual splatter. A slasher film built to thrill, but this is also interested in scaring those who scare others in reality day-to-day. It's after the victims.

  • Knives and Skin

    Knives and Skin

    ★★★½

    67

    So consistently off-its-rocker that the weirdness finds a harmony with the mundane, even deadpan trauma at its center. Very fun and strange.

  • Ad Astra

    Ad Astra

    ★★★½

    66

    James Gray's affiliation with interiority is nothing new. The Immigrant and The Lost City of Z are both, in their own influences and ideas, magnificent visual manifestations of the lengths in which shutdown becomes a form of control. What is necessary to survive, to thrive, to reach transcendence, even at the disappointment of others. Ad Astra, Gray's first entry in mega-budget studio fare, offers that same journey of internal serenity clashing against external tensions. It's a film about space-travel…

  • House of Frankenstein

    House of Frankenstein

    ★★★½

    67

    Spooky mix of anthology-like monster segments and an overarching plotline with Boris Karloff as a mad scientist. Worth a watch.

  • Boo to You Too! Winnie the Pooh

    Boo to You Too! Winnie the Pooh

    ★★★½

    67

    Watched via a recorded VHS broadcast from 2002. Adorable. Haunting trees and Piglet's anxiety and a whispering narrator. A nice slice of Halloween atmosphere.

  • Wedding Crashers

    Wedding Crashers

    ★★★½

    64

    Rachel McAdams having to choose between Owen Wilson and pre-Star Is Born Bradley Cooper is the worst part of this whole movie.

    Classic lame dudebro comedy! Christopher Walken plays a powerful dad, no choice but to Stan.

  • Halloween Is Grinch Night

    Halloween Is Grinch Night

    ★★★½

    65

    Felt like I hallucinated the whole thing. Best part is when a kid says he likes the grinch more when his eyeglasses are off and the grinch is like "put those glasses back on and face the facts!"

  • The House

    The House

    ★★★½

    65

    Begins as innocuously as possible only to eventually draw lots and lots of blood. A nasty, at times unbearably accurate critique of the desperation and aimlessness of the upper-middle-class. Works out a-ok by the end, so it doesn't fully commit to the savagery it hints at, but Will Ferrell, Amy Poehler, and Jason Mantzoukas are dynamite together.

  • Burning

    Burning

    ★★★½

    63

    Peering back against the lurid blues of a twilight sky, within all its ambiguities and tantalizing mysteries, is a human-being watching it unfold, trying to make sense of it all.

  • Jack Attack

    Jack Attack

    ★★★½

    65

    Just another reason to not eat pumpkin seeds.

  • Avalon

    Avalon

    ★★★½

    64

    The destruction of one story, and the foundation of the new.

  • Gunman's Walk

    Gunman's Walk

    ★★★½

    63

    "Is that all, preacher?"

    "Yeah, that's all..."

    So quiet, and yet so unsettled. You can feel the dust rising up within each movement, wrestled awake by long-standing ethics uprooted along the horizon line. Those Columbia interiors could charm the socks off of anybody.