Category Archives: Like It

Movies I liked but likely won’t watch again. Something was off that I wish had been done differently.

You Were Never Really Here (2018) Movie Review

Lynne Ramsay’s You Were Never Really Here doesn’t concern itself with much plot. It doesn’t concern itself with much of anything in regards to narrative, as a matter of fact.

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What it does concern itself with is Joe (Joaquin Phoenix), a hired hitman who is tasked with recovering the kidnapped daughter (Ekaterina Samsonov) of a New York Senator (Alex Manette). Mainly, it is concerned with Joe’s means of coping with his present job and his rocky past.

We first see Joe through a mask of plastic. The material slowly crinkles inward and then

Continue reading You Were Never Really Here (2018) Movie Review

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Tully (2018) Movie Review

Marlo (Charlize Theron) is about to give birth to her third child. One of her other children, Jonah (Asher Miles Fallica), acts out, causing Marlo problems at home and at Jonah’s school. He is described as “quirky,” a word that ultimately means little and does nothing to ease Marlo’s troubles.

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Marlo’s husband Drew (Ron Livingston) continues working when Marlo goes on paternity leave (which she begins just three days before her due date). When he comes home, he helps the kids with their homework and then disappears behind a video game controller and headset. All the while, Marlo is Continue reading Tully (2018) Movie Review

Revenge (2018) Movie Review

The rape-revenge genre is certainly not the most approachable one. It is one of the more controversial, to be certain. A squeamish one, for sure. Rarely can a film in this genre be called “fun.”

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At its most primal, Coralie Fargeat’s debut feature Revenge is a bloody good time. In the tradition of its New French Extremity predecessors, the film goes full throttle into a place best described with words like Continue reading Revenge (2018) Movie Review

Isle of Dogs (2018) Movie Review

Many choice words have been used in describing Wes Anderson and his body of work. One of the more apt descriptors is “meticulous.” With Isle of Dogs, the director’s second foray into the realm of stop motion animation, meticulous is perhaps an understatement.

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There is an exacting precision to every shot and animated piece of mise en scene on display in the film, which tells the story of the aftermath of Continue reading Isle of Dogs (2018) Movie Review

A Quiet Place (2018) Movie Review

The first sequence in A Quiet Place is one of the more immediately tense openings to a horror movie in recent memory. Without fully understanding the world, we understand almost from the first shot what sort of situation we have entered into. The film opens in an abandoned pharmacy, where a family is quietly perusing the aisles for supplies. The family speaks only in sign language, even though only the daughter (Millicent Simmonds) is deaf. It is clear that something bad comes with too much noise, so they don’t make a sound.

Until they do.

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It’s a completely effective opening to the film. Continue reading A Quiet Place (2018) Movie Review

Blockers (2018) Movie Review

Prom night. It is movie shorthand for virginal teenagers vying to no longer be virginal. A cliche that has worn a comfy groove for itself with a number of teenage rom coms, raunchy comedies, and the like.

Prom night is the setting of Blockers, the directorial debut of Pitch Perfect screenwriter Kay Cannon. And, surprisingly, the film finesses its way around the pitfalls of such a cliched locale quite well.

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The film centers on three parents (Leslie Mann, John Cena, and Ike Barinholtz) who discover that their daughters (Kathryn Newton, Geraldine Viswanathan, and Gideon Adlon) have made a pact to have sex for the first time on prom night. How the parents decide to react to this knowledge is Continue reading Blockers (2018) Movie Review

Thoroughbreds (2018) Movie Review

You wouldn’t know by looking at it, but Thoroughbreds is writer-director Cory Finley’s debut film.

In it, expelled prep school student Lily (Anya Taylor-Joy) rekindles an old friendship with Amanda (Olivia Cooke), who admits to Lily that she feels no emotion. Upon observing Lily’s step father Mark (Paul Sparks), who Lily openly despises for the emotional abuse he exerts on her mother, Amanda brings up the notion of murdering him.

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The film uses its morbidly comic lens to hone in on concepts of control and ownership in an upper-class, suburban setting. Waves of classism flow on the fringes of the narrative, from the Continue reading Thoroughbreds (2018) Movie Review