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  • Fantastic Four

    Fantastic Four

    ★½

    I'm not yet willing to completely write off Trank as a storyteller, but holy jeez this movie failed. It feels like the worst example yet of a studio utterly not trusting the people they've hired to do good work, and maybe the saddest part is how cynical it will inevitably leave all the young talent involved. It's certainly not all bad, and a good portion of the bad is actually just thoroughly mediocre -- an unforgivable sin with Marvel casually…

  • Kiki's Delivery Service

    Kiki's Delivery Service

    ★★★★

    The sweetness of Miyazaki's work feels effortless. It exists in its own time, with its own set of rules. Kiki's Delivery Service is the kind of story that allows escape, without eager reminders of the gloom the world so often carries.

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  • The Wolf of Wall Street

    The Wolf of Wall Street

    ★★★★

    A subtext of living in America goes something like this: “Capitalism is your birthright, and the truest calling is to spend your life in vague yet vehement pursuit of all the things you don’t yet have.” Scorsese didn’t choose Jordan Belfort’s story because of Jordan Belfort. He chose it because Belfort’s story best typifies the boundless excess we’ve somehow come to equate to “making it.”

    Read the rest at wertzofwisdom.com

  • 12 Years a Slave

    12 Years a Slave

    ★★★★★

    Steve McQueen is an intimate filmmaker. It’s not just a matter of close-ups and teary faces, McQueen works with intimacy the way Tarantino works with violence, or Wes Anderson works with colors — it is the wellspring of his voice as a storyteller.

    Read the rest at wertzofwisdom.com