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  • Images

    Images

    ★★★

    Certainly can't be accused of lacking in psychological boldness; Altman fires up the ambiance and darkness quotient here, refusing to provide any sort of true clarity on what's real and what's merely inside Cathryn's head. It's bleak, disturbing and interesting...but it's also sort of messy and it never really evokes the sort of hypnotic spell that, say, 3 Women so elegantly achieves. It's more conceptually intriguing and beautifully shot then particularly provocative, which is mildly disappointing given the premise. Perhaps it will tickle the fancy of some more than others, as the ratings amongst my LB family are all over the map!

    pro (-)

  • The Final Insult

    The Final Insult

    ★★★½

    Burnett ambitiously merges documentary with reality here in this stinging (but compassionate) portrayal of homelessness, poverty and class divides. The end result isn't entirely seamless—there's some mild clunkiness in the transitions—but Burnett's just so talented at crafting authentic, painfully realistic ambiances that truly sear into our consciousness that The Final Insult, for the most part, works as desired. Anger, aggression, unemployment, so much of it borne from inequality, racism, the lust for money...certain sequences really burn their way into the mind. Not Killer of Sheep but damn good.

    pro (+)

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  • Call Me by Your Name

    Call Me by Your Name

    ★★★★★

    I'd originally planned to write a lengthy essay on this, probably my favorite film of the decade (only Margaret is otherwise in contention) and absolutely the most personally meaningful, for my dad's soon-to-be-defunct poetry magazine Parnassus, but life got in the way—I switched companies just as the deadline was approaching and simply didn't have the hours in the day to write a 4,000 word piece with the proper checks and drafts to do my father proud. I did, however, begin

  • Along the Coast

    Along the Coast

    ★★★½

    In many ways, this playful documentary about coastal France symbolizes everything that the French New Wave would ultimately be about. Du côté de la côte is ostensibly about tourism and outsiders in the French Riviera, but it's really a love poem to the area itself—Varda's camera is full of mischief as it pans over two-piece bikinis and crowded sand. Animal floats linger over burnt bodies; a sultry voiceover chimes in with the name of a town as the primary narrator tells the story of a landmark. By manipulating imagery, messages, and structure, Varda cheekily previews everything we'd see out of the movement's masters going forward.