A collection of my critical essays about great movies.
Two or three new additions per month.
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The owner of Bubbling Wells Pet Memorial Park elaborates on how he has succeeded as an entrepreneurial pet mortician, operating a thriving cemetery while other competitor businesses have folded. Calvin Harberts predicts with bullish confidence that his pet cemetery ‘will be in business 50, 60, 70 or 100 years from now. Surely, beyond the lifetime of anybody who ever buried a pet here.’ This confirmation of a stable resting place for the departed animals is all that concerns the pet…
‘You have to realise that nobody cares about you. You’re black. You’re a young male. All you’re supposed to do is deal drugs and mug women. The only reason why you’re here... you can make their team win. If their team wins, these schools get a lot of money.’
~ Spike Lee in "Hoop Dreams."
This is the seminal sports documentary about a couple of young men with basketball dreams, whom we are first introduced to as awe-struck 14-year-olds immersed…
A swoosh of wind is heard on the soundtrack immediately conjuring an impression of frigidity, as the image of a vagabond figure on horseback appears within a harsh environment destroyed by deforestation and logging. The fingerpicking and spoken poetry from Leonard Cohen's 'The Stranger Song' accompanies the trek across the chilly, depleted landscape photographed by Vilmos Zsigmond. This is the unforgettable opening scene from Robert Altman's revisionist Western "McCabe & Mrs. Miller" and it sets the tone for the rest of…
‘But I think once you quit hearing "sir" and "ma'am" the rest is soon to follow.’
~ Sheriff Ed Tom Bell in "No Country for Old Men."
The senescent sheriff (Tommy Lee Jones) of this West Texas jurisdiction finds the crimes committed by the younger generation incomprehensible; his wandering mind nostalgic for a time when sheriffs did not even carry a gun because displays of gunslinger masculinity were not shackled to a death sentence. ‘You can't help but compare yourself…
In-the-zone (adjective) : in a mental state of focused concentration on the performance of an activity, in which one dissociates oneself from distracting or irrelevant aspects of one’s own environment.
The Zone is the destination for these figures, serving as a site of potential promise for those civilians hopelessly dissatisfied with their environment. This abandoned, quarantined venue is fraught with danger and uncertainty; they who have passed into its realm have rarely returned to reveal the secrets of their unique…
‘Man is the only animal which esteems itself rich in proportion to the number and voracity of its parasites.’
~ George Bernard Shaw
Bong Joon-ho's "Parasite" will forever more be known as the first film not in the English-language to win the Academy Award for Best Picture, a noteworthy historical achievement long overdue for global cinema. The multi-faceted nature of the film: it confidently crystallises a variety of artistic genres and tones, appeals to a universal audience - even those…