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  • 1999

    1999

    ★★★★★

    A docu-collage-glitch artifact that reflects upon the visual nature and rapturously tortuous feeling of human memory and pain. It finds its way to a satisfying reconciliation to potential stability for individuals and a community alike as they spent the previous runtime visiting the ghosts of their high school years, not to mention questions on existence and survivors remorse. Reminds me of works by Jodie Mack and David Lynch, but this is most assuredly the vision of a filmmaker and her editor and her friends and family. Stunning.

  • The Bad and the Beautiful

    The Bad and the Beautiful

    ★★★

    I'm pretty obsessed with this film, despite souring a bit on how it pats itself on the back often. It's critical of Hollywood, but only by way of showing how it was/is. The machismo. The toxicity. The sheer balls to treat people the way they do. And the self-importance of an industry that makes dreams but is very much an exploitative business. Kirk is great, Lana is great, Pidgeon is fun, Powell is fire.

  • An American in Paris

    An American in Paris

    ★★★½

    Gorgeous and brimming with all things happy, though some melancholy or even reflective joy would've been preferred over that cop-out of an ending. After all of the love entanglements, the artist conversation, the street songs and the coffee, a wonderfully impressionistic dance number is punctuated with an unfortunate last-minute change in tempo. Maybe our American was "rewarded" for his faith in Paris, or maybe the final moment was but a dream. Maybe so is that city. Maybe so is romance. Or maybe...

  • Donnybrook

    Donnybrook

    ★★★★

    Sutton's America is a purgatory of violence, plagued by death and aggression. The dream is a nightmare, and everyone would rather sleep than be awake. Grillo is icy and frightening and despicable, but also an encouraged product of the impoverished landscape of this country. Main Street USA is broken up and pot-hole filled now. Might as well bulldoze for AirBnBs and move in yuppies and hipsters. Well, the white ones, anyway. For everyone else, get off welfare, get behind the barbed wire, and get punching each other.

  • The Other Side of the Wind

    The Other Side of the Wind

    ★★★★

    Re-Watch:

    Cinema for cinephiles. Everyone/anyone else will be left out of the loop. The meta nature is off the charts, with so many whip-smart, blink and you'll miss references in the form of character, style, writing, and placement. A grand experiment that works for sure, but for who? Orson? Probably just him, and that's ok. A colossal achievement, decades in the making, that exists past legacy and even time - whatever that means. Meaning. Some moments have it, others don't.…

  • Cornholios

    Cornholios

    ★★★½

    Amusing. Cute.

    The millennial man-child nostalgia might not be a result of media obsession but rather dreams unfulfilled. Life with no real promise.

    A one gag skit, for sure, but "I moved to New York to be a cornholio" kills me, both comically and heartbreakingly.

    Could stand for more exploration, actually.

  • They'll Love Me When I'm Dead

    They'll Love Me When I'm Dead

    ★★★★★

    Turns out, in the year that featured the completion of Orson Welles' final film, the documentary about its making and the turmoil around it would be the main course to its supplement. Both are great (don't get me wrong), but I think this is tops for not just chronicling the exercise of Welles' race to the finish line, but also in realizing the prophecy promised by the style he was pushing for. To go further. There's still control and command, but also many "happy accidents" in juxtaposition and contrast. In drawing the line. In the editing.

    It's all in the editing.

  • The Favourite

    The Favourite

    ★★★½

    Olivia Colman gives the best personification of President Trump yet, with a performance of a leader both pathetic and tragic. Tragedy suggests empathy, and so goes it here. The film is more than its current affair politics, diving into power and relationship dynamics, not to mention class and a bit into gender. It ends up being about this Queen, but the body of the story focuses more on her being manipulated than her being in general. Stone and Weisz are…

  • Cam

    Cam

    ★★★★★

    The inevitable turn our digital selves will reach will not be a resolution, but a moshed Moebius strip. Answers will be tossed aside for quick gratification of the self, only to come around, asking for more attention and danger. Burrows under the skin and irritates well enough, only to begin again. What is identity online? What is pleasure? Is there pain, or is that reserved for IRL? The scariest thing of all is that our lead cares not for these…

  • The Night Comes for Us

    The Night Comes for Us

    ★★★

    A cacophony of ultraviolence. Outside of the sheer inhumane/insane bloodshed and body count, there is but a fleeting story of brotherhood and gang warfare, ho-hum in nature. Within is a pro-wrestling/silent movie style story told with body language and chunks of body parts. Aghast at the screen, you'll feel, but little more than that.

    Exceptional and stunning photography and choreography, not to mention practical and digital effects with weight, but the impact and importance of the fights and staging are…

  • The Predator

    The Predator

    ★★

    From my twitter feed @billreviews:

    Somewhat fun but mostly rushed and oblong. Like a race where everyone gets a participation trophy. Cute, but who won? Bro machismo in hilarious play mixed in with PTSD comedics/dramatics, gave way to speculative exposition and nonsense.

    Tremblay on the spectrum subplot + "The Loonies" up against alien threat were both intriguing but underutilized (possibly cut down?). Any potential theme of perceived weakness becoming character/story strength failed when up against the whip wittiness and gun…

  • Support the Girls

    Support the Girls

    ★★★½

    From my twitter feed @billreviews:

    It's funny/amusing how well Bujalski is able to capture the utter frustrations of everyday food industry workers, from the middle management babysitters to the melodramatic servers.

    Written with attention towards boring reality, directed with the atmosphere of natural human theatre in mind and performed as if everything is gonna be ok (though we know nothing really is).

    Regina Hall is the heroine our mini-mall lives need. Just keeping things together is a triumph, weighted down…