Toys ★★½

Cogently, flawlessly Dante-esque satirical look at War in the age of Consumerism (note my Capital Letters: I Mean Business). State-subsidized war morphing into consumerism may register as overly simplistic and didactic, but in fact both the military and the toy manufacturers are fucking capitalist tools, a brilliant insight. Construction-tank metal becomes toy-metal plastic (THEY ARE NOT THE SAME), the catalyst for a generation of youth misunderstanding the napalm-istic impact of video games (unlike Barry Levinson, who Understands War and the horror of its trivialization). Some might mistake its blunt premise as the confused, semi-senile satire of a man updating a decade-old script with piecemeal details, but in fact the film is an urgent wake-up call, a post-Persian Gulf earnest, decrying war's reduction to green missiles and banal CNN commentary. It's more prophetic than ever, turning avant-garde "plastic qualities" into actual toy plastic qualities — a, bitingly satirical inversion. And if you don't believe that, you're probably a) a supporter of the Gulf War b) a fan of Drive.

This post has been written by the Celluloid Liberation Front, unless they prove otherwise.