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  • A Writer's Odyssey

    A Writer's Odyssey

    ★★★★

    Given the number of effects-driven fantasy wuxia films that have come out in China in recent years, and the general mediocrity of the ones I’ve seen, I was a little wary of diving into the latest film from Brotherhood of Blades director Lu Yang. But A Writer’s Odyssey is not only a solid action movie, it’s got an ingenious set-up rife with allegorical potential, the kind of sneaky politics one hopes to find as a sign of life in a mass-market product.

    More at The Chinese Cinema.

  • Crazy Samurai Musashi

    Crazy Samurai Musashi

    ★★★

    Legendary samurai Miyamoto Musashi has defeated the champion of the Yoshioka clan in a duel. In retaliation, the clan gathers 100 samurai and 300 mercenaries to ambush him and exact their revenge. But then things go terribly, terribly wrong as that crazy samurai kills them all, one after another in a 75 minute handheld sequence shot. Crazy Samurai Musashi is an experimental action film more admirable for its tenacity and the stamina of its star, Sakaguchi Tak, than its choreographic…

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  • Heat

    Heat

    ★★★★★

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

    That moment when DeNiro realizes he has to go after Waingro. He's not a romantic hero, he's a small-minded man of violence driven not by ideals or esoteric codes but by the basest of human urges.

    That moment when Pacino practically dances down the hospital stairs, gleefully fleeing his family for the sake of the chase, freed from the pretense of normalcy, from the obligation to care about anyone else.

    The tragedy and joy of learning that you cannot escape…

  • Jupiter Ascending

    Jupiter Ascending

    ★★★★

    I don't know what to make of a world that rejects this and adores every Marvel movie. Things don't make sense to me.