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  • The Cloverfield Paradox

    The Cloverfield Paradox

    ★★★

    What a disappointment. Genius marketing strategy (as with the rest of the series), but it doesn’t do justice to its genre trappings the way the original Cloverfield and especially the wonderful, claustrophic and intense surprise 10 Cloverfield Lane did. That’s not to say it didn’t look great or lacked performance depth, or even capable direction, but the writing ultimately let this one down. Earth of the near future (2028) is running out of energy resources, putting the world at risk…

  • Dirty Rotten Scoundrels

    Dirty Rotten Scoundrels

    ★★★★

    Completely coincidental that I watched this so soon after My Cousin Vinny (which shares screenwriter Dale Launer). This too is a brisk viewing that’s pure fun from beginning to end, anchored entirely by performance rather than any spectacular writing and directing (though give credit to Frank Oz behind the camera all the same). Those two elements are essentially bulwarks to prop up the comedy clinic being put on here by Steve Martin and Michael Caine, whose styles couldn’t be more…

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  • Heat

    Heat

    ★★★★★

    One of the coolest movies ever made and a masterpiece of the crime genre, Michael Mann has never been better. Furnished with the director's trademark gritty urban style, Pacino and De Niro making every movie geek's dream come true with an unforgettable onscreen rivalry, intense action scenes that take you into the fray like very few movies can, and an amazing supporting cast across the board ... What else can be said that hasn't been already? If you haven't seen…

  • Whiplash

    Whiplash

    ★★★★★

    aka When The Little Drummer Boy Met The Big Bad Wolf. A relentless, emotionally draining case study in personal ambition meeting the cold harsh reality of what it takes to achieve greatness. J.K. Simmons is Terence Fletcher, a beast of a man who runs his crash-course in perfecting the art of jazz like a drill sergeant. Fuck Mr. Holland – this is an R. Lee Ermey level of intensity with a baton instead of a rifle. Miles Teller is Andrew…