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  • The Thief of Bagdad

    The Thief of Bagdad

    Most of the visual effects in this almost hundred-year-old film look more convincing than the CGI in any number of modern action movies; Fairbanks' physique holds up quite well too; most importantly the spirited sense of fun and adventure and romance and character (e.g. the pivots in the "bad guy" rival suitors' personalities, not to mention the thief's own) and danger and spectacle and magic all fly a carpet in circles around present-day efforts, if efforts are even really being…

  • Killing Time

    Killing Time

    Brilliant as b(/B)lack comedy, audiovisual treat (e.g. an excellent and retrospectively prefigurative/synechdochic opening composition; a running commentary muttered under the breath) and naturalistic observation. Extremely funny monologue is made funnier by its casualness - goldenly absurd lines tossed off like they were nothing - and broader physical gags are enhanced by their juxtaposition with serious pain, which in reality is never without its own ridiculousness. Gets suicide, and also gets its failed attempts as microcosm for life, the forestalling of…

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  • Red Sparrow

    Red Sparrow

    The worst recent movie that is essential contemporary viewing - essential, rather, for how it is the worst - Red Sparrow is Hollywood's latest and timeliest hysteric psychological projection of its and its country's own problems in 2018 onto villains across the world.

    Firstly, we should all recognize that the ongoing media furor over Russia's involvement in the election of Trump is yet another red herring of a scandal - after enough years living with news reporting on this planet,…

  • Two Seconds

    Two Seconds

    Having already seen this film a couple of times on the big screen in the last few years I knew Edward G. Robinson had a great speech in it at the end, but what I knew was inaccurate, inadequate, because "great" just isn't good enough, because it's a word that's used all the time and what Robinson does, though using words, totally transcends them, especially the everyday ones.

    Try to identify a single emotion, for instance, that we have words…