Category Archives: Love It

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.

Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017) Movie Review

In Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, a title so laborious and specific that it can’t help but get stuck in your head, Mildred Hayes (Frances McDormand) rents out three billboards (they haven’t been used in years, not since the highway went up) and plasters a notice up on them. Black on red. A question aimed at Police Chief Willoughby (Woody Harrelson) asking for justice for Mildred’s dead daughter.

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A confrontational pitch-black comedy about reactionary culture and life-altering emotional extremity, Three Billboards delivers one of the Continue reading Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017) Movie Review

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Mudbound (2017) Movie Review

On the eve of World War II, Laura (Carey Mulligan) is courted by engineer Henry McAllan (Jason Clarke) in the Mississippi Delta. Although Laura is more charmed by Henry’s brother Jamie (Garrett Hedlund), she marries Henry and they raise two children. Henry buys a farm (more precisely, he’s swindled and the family is relegated to a meager shack that is characterized most readily by the puddles of mud in the yard that never dry up). This farm employs the Jackson family, led by pensive Florence (Mary J. Blige) and Hap (Rob Morgan) Jackson.

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When America is drawn into the war effort—Roosevelt’s infamy speech marks the act break—Ronsel Jackson (Jason Mitchell) and Jamie are called on to serve. When they return to the states, inevitably changed, they face Continue reading Mudbound (2017) Movie Review

Lady Bird (2017) Movie Review

The teenage bildungsroman is a common narrative formula. Lady Bird, Greta Gerwig’s directing debut (she also serves as screenwriter), may be another addition to the list, but it does not feel like another tired addition. If anything, it exists in this long line of coming of age films as as much of a standout as the film’s eponymous role: a personality so bold and big but also honest that it demands to be taken on its own merits.

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This is undoubtedly caused by Gerwig’s distinct presence. Even as a first-time director, it is clear that this is uniquely Continue reading Lady Bird (2017) Movie Review

The Killing of a Sacred Deer (2017) Movie Review

Rare are the films in which the atmosphere is disquieting from beginning to end. People will tell you that The Killing of a Sacred Deer isn’t a horror film. But there is no closer word to describe it. It is a film that is horrifying without an abundance of horror tropes. It is unsettling to a fault. It is the most unsettling film of 2017, perhaps.

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Having known nothing about The Killing of the Sacred Deer before entering the theater, I will suggest others do the same. What I will tell you is that Continue reading The Killing of a Sacred Deer (2017) Movie Review

Loveless (2017) Movie Review

Loveless, Russian director Andrey Zvyagintsev’s follow up to the Oscar-nominated Leviathan, truly lives up to its name. Bleak in both style and tone, the epic drama follows the disappearance of a young boy (Matvey Novikov) and the effect it has on his mother Zhenya (Maryana Spivak), his father Boris (Aleksey Rozin), and their respective lovers.

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The film implicates its audience in its social commentary—the gratuity of the film’s elongated final shot makes that pretty clear. But it is Zvyagintsev’s sense of Continue reading Loveless (2017) Movie Review

Brawl in Cell Block 99 (2017) Movie Review

With a title like Brawl in Cell Block 99, one might think that S. Craig Zahler’s second directorial effort is an exploitation film filled with B-movie action. There are elements in the script and set pieces that signal toward grindhouse action, sure, but Brawl in Cell Block 99 is more than just a B-movie. It is a clever, exploitation action pastiche.

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Following Zahler’s first film, Bone Tomahawk, which seamlessly blended genres without sacrificing the artistic beauty or history of those genres, it is no surprise that Continue reading Brawl in Cell Block 99 (2017) Movie Review

The Florida Project (2017) Movie Review

The Florida Project, director Sean Baker’s follow up to the highly acclaimed Tangerine, takes place on the outskirts of Disney world, an Orlando-area that is plagued by poverty. In the Magic Castle—a motel named loosely off of a Disney property, seemingly as a way to drum up more business—children run about in the Summer heat doing whatever they please.

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One of these children is Moonee (Brooklynn Prince). We are introduced to her when she and two of her friends decide to run off to a neighboring motel and spit on someone’s car.

It doesn’t feel like a fitting introduction to a child character who we are about to follow for the next two hours, but that’s how it is. There’s no Continue reading The Florida Project (2017) Movie Review