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  • Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

    Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

    ★★★★½

    2004

    Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind represents an elusive oddity within cinema- the science fiction romance. Written by the ever thoughtful Charlie Kaufman– decidedly one of our generation’s strongest and most imaginary screenwriters- Spotless Mind is a melancholy and often humorous ode to the inevitable heartaches associated with breakup. The film operates as a kind of pre-Black Mirror cautionary tale (though admittedly more tender than sadistic), gradually revealing a world where an experimental brain operation can permanently erase a…

  • High Flying Bird

    High Flying Bird

    ★★★½

    2019

    If nothing else, Netflix has proven itself a perfect platform for releasing films like High Flying Bird. Steven Soderbergh‘s latest, a breezy sports drama shot entirely on an iPhone, represents and unveils the hidden beauty in Netflix’s system as a film uncompromisingly cinematic yet wholly unsuited for the inevitable failure of a traditional theater release. Unlike Netflix’s previous major film this year, Dan Gilroy‘s insufferably boring Velvet Buzzsaw (which coincidentally also premiered in Park City less than a month…

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  • The Umbrellas of Cherbourg

    The Umbrellas of Cherbourg

    ★★★★★

    Favorites

    Magical yet sober, funny yet melancholy, and oh so achingly tender. Completely baffled by why I didn't instantly fall in love with this the first time I saw it. Unequivocally one of the best musicals ever made.

  • Possession

    Possession

    ★★

    1981

    On paper, Possession represents everything I would find appealing in a horror film- paranoid cinematography, eccentric performances, and a slow descent into madness. And indeed, though the film has all three of those characteristics in bounty (and has very clearly inspired many of my favorites), I could not for the life of me get into it.

    Besides the psychotic subway scene- which to its credit, is truly magnificent- I was straight bored. It's all too absurd and nonsensical, but…

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  • Blade Runner 2049

    Blade Runner 2049

    ★★★★½

    2017

    So frustratingly close to becoming a modern masterpiece, held back literally by a handful of clumsy scenes of exposition.

    Roger Deakins is a treasure. The first shot of Ryan Gosling's silhouette against the harsh orange of poisoned Las Vegas air is *perfect*. Its jaw-dropping beauty caught me off guard even on a second watch.

  • Taxi Driver

    Taxi Driver

    ★★★★½

    There's a moment in Taxi Driver when Travis Bickle is balancing his TV set with his foot. There's a light tension in the air as it oscillates back and forth between the force of his foot and gravity. Ultimately it falls over, and its assured destruction is perhaps the film's most obvious parallel to Travis's own downward spiral. Teetering on the edge in his own mental illness and isolation, Travis is very much that TV set.