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  • Midsommar

    Midsommar

    ★★★

    Extremely invigorating as an exploration of the disconnect between guttural abstract feelings, sensations, wants, and the means through which we communicate them, that others do to us, and we do to ourselves. Basically every really great moment here pivots on this, admittedly broadly-defined, fracture, from early when Dani and Christian manipulate each other to keep a relationship that neither of them really want together, all the way to the final shot. It either attempts to blow this up to a…

  • Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

    Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

    ★★★½

    Not unlike Tarantino’s other films, in that the best things about it are ingeniously conceived/executed scenes/moments rather than a tapestric whole as I tend to gravitate toward. And yet, maybe not so much like them, at least not for me; I know for a fact that other people have tired of his scenes that willfully choose not to end, his plots that unhurriedly amble toward resolution, but that’s never really been my take. Tarantino dialogue, I’ve said before, is probably…

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  • Nathan for You: Finding Frances

    Nathan for You: Finding Frances

    ★★★★★

    Does my voice sound familiar to you?

    A raw weaponization of the fundamental unknowability of other people, paraded through actors, paid company, unfamiliar faces, untrustworthy recounts, ultimately back to who has always been the show’s central question mark. After all, how could they be understood when we so struggle to even approach understanding ourselves, our true motives, our true feelings, our true needs. If people are to us what we need them to be and what small glimpses we can…

  • American Honey

    American Honey

    ★★★★½

    Best Supporting Actor 2k16: the cowboy guy whose performance eventually becomes a series of super weird grunts. 
    Best Supporting Actress 2k16: the kid whose favorite band was Dead Kennedys and sang I Kill Children.

    (A thing where nothing pays off and nobody changes and no answers are found and all of that is the point. I came in looking for something cathartic and maybe even hedonistic and got something more locked-off and tougher and, in spite of its overwhelming emotional…