Adam Kempenaar

Adam Kempenaar

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Co-host/executive producer of long-running Filmspotting podcast and WBEZ radio show.

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  • Close Encounters of the Third Kind

    Close Encounters of the Third Kind

    ★★★★½

    In the doc that precedes the 40th anniversary release, director Denis Villeneuve suggests the movie is a personal one for Spielberg beyond his obvious fascination with the material. He says the movie is about movie-making too, which struck me as a little trite - and cliche - in the moment. I mean, how many directors and their films has this been / could it be said about?

    And yet, watching this time, I was struck by Roy Neary's journey from…

  • Before Sunrise

    Before Sunrise

    ★★★★★

    If somebody had told 19 year-old me that one day I’d watch this intimate masterpiece with my 14 year-old daughter... after having a conversation with Ethan Hawke where, just like an Ethan Hawke character in a Richard Linklater movie, he oh-so-insightfully schooled me on the importance of giving said daughter permission to make mistakes, to break hearts and have her heart broken... well, I might’ve said that sounded like something from a Richard Linklater movie. 

    There is some kind of magic in this world.

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  • Sing Street

    Sing Street

    ★★★★★

    Everyone is going to get so sick of me talking about this movie.

  • The Big Short

    The Big Short

    ★★★★★

    Five stars? Yeah, five stars. Call me Standard & Poor's because I'm just tossing out AAA ratings.

    A (frequently hilarious) crime movie where the American economy is the corpse, the entire financial system is the culprit, and the detectives all have bets on the body dropping.

    But for the bearish take, you can hear Josh try to rain on my Adam McKay party on Filmspotting #566.