• Design for Living

    Design for Living

    ★★★★

    Modern Hollywood leading ladies don’t have what the talkie starlets had. I love you so much Miriam Hopkins! Running circles around these men like she does it in her sleep. Throuple rights forever!!

  • Days of '36

    Days of '36

    ★★½

    Oops I guess I’m still calibrating myself to appreciate Angelopoulos’ work. This was a really challenging film for me, and I was definitely not helped by going into this completely blind. I feel like I understood the general gist of the ineptitude of the government officials in solving the crisis on their hands but details that were glossed over I would have appreciated.

    I do get that Angelopoulos works on a level of obfuscation. But how he decides what is important for the screen and what isn’t feels like the code I need to crack.

  • Reconstruction

    Reconstruction

    ★★★½

    Theo Angelopoulos’ first feature is an intriguing formal exercise: a deconstructed look at the events surrounding a murder. The non-linear narrative, and Angelopoulos’ decision not to show major action and melodramatic beats make this a much slower, meditative work than I expected. 

    This was my first Angelopoulos film and I was definitely impressed with the tone and pace setting, as well as the black and white cinematography. I love the way that he shoots tracking shots, especially the wide exterior…

  • Flee

    Flee

    ★★★★

    Like Maitland’s Tower, Flee is a bridge between animation and documentary. Using animation to recreate memories is something so powerful and engaging. The dissonance between seeing something hand drawn or rotoscoped and linking that with real audio of a situation or a recollection of one allows creativity to seep in more to the medium. Like when the animation in this film becomes less detailed and colorful to depict Amin’s repressed or hyper violent memories. Hope to see more of this in modern docs!

    Obviously weeped a river watching this.

  • Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness

    Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness

    ★★★½

    My worst fear for this movie was that it would still feel like it was directed by a studio but I’m so glad I’m wrong. Raimi’s hands are all over how this movie looks and sounds. The creative, pulsating camera movements were so exciting, the way the incredible Elfman score juts in an out kept me on my toes, and I gladly accepted a healthy portion of Raimi wickedness. For a lot of people this will be a weak Marvel…

  • The Batman

    The Batman

    ★★★★½

    has been literal years since a superhero movie looked this good. cinematography that leans into the shadows and blacks of the frame, trusting that the viewer is seeing this in a dark cinema. closeups framed to engage you as a viewer. surprisingly tight script that earns the runtime. Pattinson is fantastic. it boy of Hollywood back to claim his throne.

  • Ambulance

    Ambulance

    ★★★★

    Leave it to Bay to center a whole movie on one action set piece. Jan de Bont would be proud.

    Action is off the walls good. Bay using drones like this is probably going to set up a trend for the next decade of action flicks.

  • We're All Going to the World's Fair

    We're All Going to the World's Fair

    ★★★★

    as someone who spent probably way too much time on the internet during his teen years talking to strangers, this was incredibly powerful and relatable stuff. creepy, gripping, heartbreaking. I'm in love with all the long takes, Anna Cobb's presence just eats up those 5 minute+ static scenes.

  • Like Grains of Sand

    Like Grains of Sand

    ★★★★½

    deserves to live in the pantheon of queer cinema. powerfully delivering a sprawling ensemble tale of unrequited love and sexual frustration. scenes are dominated by long takes, which gives these impressive actors space and room to breathe. these performances are stunning.

  • Three Sisters with Maiden Hearts

    Three Sisters with Maiden Hearts

    ★★★

    Naruse's first sound film. There are some stretches of this that feel like it was made by someone who has been making sound films for decades. The ability for directors to complicate and deepen storylines with dialogue is something that Naruse employs to full effect (he may have been going a little overboard with excitement). Though parts of this film still feel very much of a silent age. I'm excited to see him continue to develop his sound designing and editing elements.

    Never doubt a Naruse last minute gut punch.

    Mikio Naruse

  • The Midnight After

    The Midnight After

    ★★★★

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

    Leave it to Fruit Chan to include a 10 minute group stabbing of a rapist in this. Absolute bonkers shit.

  • Yearning

    Yearning

    ★★★★★

    This was a major MAJOR Naruse film and I am happy to report that I am absolutely blown away by this.

    Melodrama at its top form, Takamine with a soul crushing performance. Naruse pummels you with every final act turn, my heart is exhausted. One of the greatest films of all time.

    Mikio Naruse