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Matt has written 199 reviews for films during 2013.

  • The Great Dictator

    The Great Dictator

    ★★★★

    Not feeling well, so I did my usual sicky routine of staying in bed and taking care of classic movie blind spots. (I started this in college when I had mono; I watched GONE WITH THE WIND and THE BRIDGE ON THE RIVER KWAI and any long movie I could get my hands on. It was great.) Earlier I did UGETSU and after a nap I watched THE GREAT DICTATOR. Probably a better act of defiance than a movie --…

  • Pee-wee's Big Adventure

    Pee-wee's Big Adventure

    ★★★★½

    (Watched with Tim Burton and Paul Reubens' commentary.)

  • Prisoners

    Prisoners

    ★★

    The most damning movie about RVs since WINNEBAGO MAN. That industry needs a new PR rep.

  • Snitch

    Snitch

    ★★½

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

    The good:

    -The Rock. Even though he's totally miscast as an everyman completely out of his depth in the world of Mexican drug cartels -- my favorite scene is the one where he's escorted into a drug den full of dirty money by ten "bad dudes" and he's TALLER AND WIDER THAN EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM -- he gives a surprisingly soulful performance. He's working in a darker and more serious vein than I typically like to see him…

  • Gangs of New York

    Gangs of New York

    ★★★

    "Don’t you never come in here empty-handed again. You gotta pay for the pleasure of my company.”

    College course proposal: "A History of America, According to Martin Scorsese." All of Scorsese's historical films, screened chronologically (by subject, not release date). I think it'd be a fruitful class.

  • Catch Me If You Can

    Catch Me If You Can

    ★★★★★

    "Dear Dad, you always told me that an honest man has nothing to fear, so I'm trying my best not to be afraid."

    I have fond memories of seeing this movie in the theater (with my family, as I recall, on Christmas Day 2002). But that's about it; I hadn't seen it once in the eleven (!!) years since, and wouldn't have put it on a list of my favorite Spielberg movies, or favorite Tom Hanks movies, or favorite Leonardo…

  • Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues

    Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues

    ★★★★

    "Adam McKay’s movies tend to play better on the 10th viewing than the first. His humor is so surreal and unpredictable, it sometimes takes a couple of tries to fully appreciate its quirks and eccentricities. No wonder his aesthetic lends itself so well to a sequel; faithful fans of the first ANCHORMAN already understand the rules of THE LEGEND CONTINUES’ universe, and they’re all the more prepared to indulge McKay and star/co-writer Will Ferrell in their inspired flights of comedic…

  • Spring Breakers

    Spring Breakers

    ★★★½

    Getting the sneaking spicion I will be quoting this movie for a long time.

  • Oldboy

    Oldboy

    ★★

    The film provides its own succinct review, via a line of dialogue uttered in the final scene: "Don't waste one more moment of your life thinking about me."

    That about sums it up.

  • Short Term 12

    Short Term 12

    ★★★★★

    Was curious to see how this would hold up to a second viewing. Given that I cried MORE this time, I'm gonna say it held up pretty well. I definitely underrated John Gallagher Jr. the first time around, he's definitely on par with Brie Larson in this movie.

    Screw it, I'm giving it the extra half star.

  • All Is Lost

    All Is Lost

    ★★★★

    Dude, God, why you hatin' on Robert Redford?

    A few dodgy special effects and music cues aside, this is another year-end catch-up winner, about on even footing in my mind with GRAVITY in the Tales Of Impossible Survival category. It's less technically impressive than GRAVITY, but feels more elemental. The lack of dialogue, biographical details, even a name for the Redford character lends the already tense story an allegorical heft about the universal struggle against the dying of the light.

    Also, fuck boats.

  • Lovelace

    Lovelace

    ★★½

    Iffy execution, but there's a germ of a really good movie here in the RASHOMONing of the various accounts of Lovelace's rise to porn stardom, either as a willing participant or an abused victim. They may have bitten off more than they could chew by deciding to do that on such a large scale. RASHOMON, after all, focuses on a single event from various viewpoints, not years of events and stories. Still, a surprisingly good performance from Amanda Seyfried in…