Movies I absolutely loved. Love, of course, is a subjective term. For me, loving a film means being wholly drawn into it or being intrigued into watching the film again. If I left a movie with my mouth agape or nodding my head contently, chances are “Love It.” is my short-form review.
Bo Burnham is a stand-up comic with a distinct style. Semi-musical, semi-poetic, always frantic and unpausing, he skewers media and self-reflexively dissects the public perception of artistry. “Art is dead,” he sings in one song. “Some people think you’re funny / how do we get those people’s money?” His seemingly cynical take on the entertainment industry is curbed by his indictment of self. He implicates himself—“My drug’s attention / I am an addict / but I get paid to indulge in my habit”—in order to subvert the creator-as-god mentality.
Paul Schrader first came into prominence with the screenplay for Martin Scorsese’s Taxi Driver. There are shades of Taxi Driver in Schrader’s latest. The protagonist of First Reformed, Reverend Toller (Ethan Hawke), lives a mostly solitary life as the pastor of a small church—funded by a larger televangelist church—in Snowbridge, New York. He has begun a test of self by setting out to write a journal of his thoughts for 12 months.
There are some horror movies that make you jump. There are some that make you squirm. There are the rare ones that raise questions about the human condition. And there are the few horror movies that do all three and manage to conjure images that stick unshaken in your head long after you’ve left the theater. Hereditary is of this latter breed.
To be fair, Hereditary does some of these things much more effectively than others. Namely, the questions it raises about the nature of grief and the things we do or do not say about tragedy fall by the wayside when Continue reading Hereditary (2018) Movie Review→
Where to begin with Chloe Zhao’s The Rider? We could start by tossing around words like “rare,” “must-see,” “transcendent.” It is, after all, a rare construction that transcends the limits of form to make it a must-see film-going experience. Simple buzz words don’t really do it justice, though, as The Rider is comprised of so many artistic strokes done great.
Andrew Haigh’s 2015 film 45 Years is a fantastic film. Quietly fascinating, it dissects a seemingly mundane 45-year marriage at a pivotal point of fracture. His latest film, Lean on Pete, has shades of this. It travels with a 16-year old boy named Charley (Charlie Plummer) at a crucial period of adversity.
Bjorn Borg (Sverrir Gudnason) is the number one ranked tennis player in the world. The only thing between him and winning a fifth straight Wimbledon is American John McEnroe (Shia LaBeouf). McEnroe is an outspoken, emotional player who doesn’t follow the decorum of the sport.
Borg, on the other hand, is soft-spoken. He lacks emotion. He is very particular about his play and his fame, which he actively avoids. He is the apparent antithesis of McEnroe in almost every respect. Except, of course, that they both Continue reading Borg vs. McEnroe (2018) Movie Review→
A band of robbers hide away in a hamlet in the Mediterranean desert after stowing 250 kilos worth of gold bars in the trunk of their car and picking up a family of hitchhikers on their way back from the heist. Two police officers show up, and the whole thing devolves into a shootout.