Vadim Rizov

Contact: vadim dot rizov at gmail dot com

Favorite films

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Recent reviews

  • There There

    There There


    Filmmaker: The movie dares you not to notice the way by which it’s made, and you toy with that throughout. That early moment of realization, that the characters are never going to enter the same frame, forces you to ask yourself questions about how this was made, even if you didn’t know.

    Bujalski: I’ve been surprised—there are people who can and do watch this whole thing, and certainly understand that something strange is happening, but never put together that these…

  • Showing Up

    Showing Up


    Frustration—about being right while treated like she’s always wrong—can make Lizzy petty. “He’s always been creative,” Jo says to brush away any alarm Sean’s behavior might raise. “A lot of people are creative,” Lizzy responds, as dismissive as she is correct. The film operates in a tonal register near Ann Beattie’s best short stories: observations of specific/privileged zones within white-collar/creative class circles, rendered with a mildly satirical judgmentalism justified by its accuracy and judiciousness (a great line: “We’ve got different…

Popular reviews

  • Frances Ha

    Frances Ha


    This is the kind of movie that causes strongly polarized reactions based on each viewer's capacity to tolerate/recognize/empathize with those on-screen. Some people just can't handle watching 20-/30-something white people undergo minor crises within a basically privileged framework, which is understandable. (That said, I'm not sure why someone with that mindset would ever go watch ANY NOAH BAUMBACH MOVIE and ask afterwards — as some guy did — " if it had any sort of larger social context… besides only…

  • Magic Mike XXL

    Magic Mike XXL


    Magic Mike XXL is a putatively "modest"/"small" film — $14.8 million budget, 28-day shooting schedule, a shambling road movie meant to showcase extended musical numbers and largely excising the first film's recessionary panic. (Business is discussed, specifically the hustle of running a small business, but it's not the dominant throughline motivating everything as in the first, a line of inquiry Soderbergh pursued in Erin Brockovich, Bubble and The Girlfriend Experience, in ways that increasingly played like a meta-text about his…