• Le Samouraï

    Le Samouraï

    ★★★★

    Love how sleek and simple this was.
    A loner hired hitman has to evade police after a contract killing doesn’t go as smoothly as planned. Police quickly suspect him after several conflicting reports from witnesses.  From there we see a web of intrigue and cat and mouse chases. It follows enough of a straightforward narrative so it’s fairly accessible despite all the choices for sparseness and long periods of silence. The film is cold and majorly deadpan, so what you’ll need…

  • Angst

    Angst

    ★★★½

    Literally the first thought that popped into my head was the Hays Code. Assuming you don’t know, it was the set of regulations placed upon US films in the years of 1934 to 1968. What could be in a film and what could not; one of the most embarrassing stiflings of creative expression ever made. Among the extensive, bureaucratic list a certain rule about violence was this: 
    “All criminal action had to be punished, and neither the crime nor the criminal…

  • High School

    High School

    ★★★½

    My second Frederick Wiseman film; plainly named “High School.” Documenting the goings on of several classes and encounters in a 1968 school, the cultural snapshot is fascinating and shows how wayward certain attitudes were then, but also what problems have persisted with public education. Through the lens of his cold and clinical camera work, Wiseman takes mundane scenes to make larger social points about authoritarianism and the general ineffectiveness of the American school system. We hear Vietnam, MLK’s assassination and…

  • The Human Centipede (First Sequence)

    The Human Centipede (First Sequence)

    Way to go. Unintentionally funny at times, and unlike Tusk where it was fully aware of what it was, this is just crap. Characters are unsympathetic, idiotic and poorly realized. The titular centipede is also laughable.

    If there were one movie I could stop from existing it would be this one.

  • Vampires

    Vampires

    ★★★

    If you don’t cower at action movie tropes in disgusting abundance, you’ll find this a blast to get drunk to and bring out the snacks. Mostly a bargain bin showing compared to Carpenter’s usually excellent filmography. Pretty entertaining. It doesn’t take itself too seriously.

  • My Kid Could Paint That

    My Kid Could Paint That

    ★★★½

    Its makeup philosophically is too sophomoric to answer the tall order its questions call for, and the ambiguous tone will leave some unhappy. But “My Kid” is a neat examination on several forms of exploitation (moviemaking, prime time TV, the art world) and the ethics of media exposure.

  • Carne

    Carne

    ★★★½

    The first New French Extremity film and what kickstarted Gaspar Noe’s career. Those could be good or bad outcomes weighing you liking his artsy brashness. An origin story of The Butcher. Even if there’s unfilled gap between the end of this short and the impotent, foul-mouthed lunatic he is by I Stand Alone.

  • Rain Man

    Rain Man

    ★★★½

    Cheesy but damn it I liked it. Watching these two lost brothers and their estranged relationship growing is so satisfying. Charlie is a changed man by the end and Raymond is so likable.

  • Heima

    Heima

    ★★★★

    At Home is a jaw-dropping immersion into the landscape and quaintness of the small country of Iceland. The band Sigur Ros go around and play a series of free concerts in an odd selection of settings. It’s pretty cool that a band this big gave back like that. Sometimes they’re outside in a wide, rather rural area or in some abandoned building.

    It’s not a documentary, so just be aware it’s a concert film. A flawless marriage of stunning cinematography…

  • Primary

    Primary

    ★★½

    Did not watch this for a college lecture, since half of the reviews seem to mention that. I decided to waste my own free time on it for whatever reason and it was… OK. For 1960 this documentary style is very unique and it gives a humanistic edge to these two high up politicians. We follow US president hopefuls, Hubert Humphrey and JFK. Some of the JFK footage is amazing and probably the highlight. This seemingly mythical figure seems fallible, by…

  • Climax

    Climax

    ★★★

    Exactly what the title implies. Dark and sexually depraved as ever. The cast has a rotating wheel of random dancers we’re supposed to identify. It’s dizzying to pick apart the ensemble, but likely the intended effect. There isn’t a traditional story. It’s about the traumatic events on screen. A party goes horribly wrong. At the start, the dancers are genuinely fun to watch even if the first half drags. Said meat and potatoes are the last 40~ minutes. It’s sometimes a little overkill and has missed opportunities but it’s decent. Once again, if you like Noe’s style you’ll like this. He’s still got it.

  • Scum

    Scum

    ★★★★½

    A brutal slice of realism about Britain’s youth institutional systems. For a cast featuring such a large swathe of characters, it stays multi-layered and superbly acted.