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  • The Master

    The Master

    ★★★

    59/100 (down from 69)

    Well, that was unexpected. Second time through, what I had originally seen as a cohesive whole (if only united by the thickness of the characterization) falls apart into a serious of lovely looking mini-set pieces with not much else propping them up. The acting is still great, but the characters are a little shallower, a little more annoying.

  • Ender's Game

    Ender's Game

    ★★

    33/100

    Flat direction, some terrible, terrible acting, and the fundamental problem of asking us to invest in dull simulations and awkward "winning the chaps over" scenes in the hope that the silly twist would land. It doesn't.

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  • La La Land

    La La Land

    ★★½

    48/100

    Relentlessly artificial and horribly written (the story beats are so predictable - time for an argument, time for a crisis of confidence, time for a win! - and the mawkish finale completely unearned thanks to the cheap jump in time that completely glosses over who did what and thus lets the audience wallow in a hollow melancholy without having to question either of the main characters' decisions), this is basically saved by the relentlessly energy of the two leads,…

  • Mandala

    Mandala

    ★★★★

    71/100

    Beautifully directed, elliptical in its storytelling, rigorous in its shot selection. This is a spiritual investigation that doesn't succumb to picturesque homilies or unsubtle juxtapositions. it just exists, kicks up the odd fuss, wanders around, and wonders.