Favorite films

  • Roman Holiday

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  • Spider-Man: No Way Home

    ★★★★½

  • Murders in the Zoo

    ★★★

  • Luca

    ★★★★½

  • Summer of Soul (...or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised)

    ★★★★★

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  • Spider-Man: No Way Home

    Spider-Man: No Way Home

    ★★★★½

    Breaks Whatever a Spider Can

    I have now seen seven of the eight Spider-Man movies, missing only the second Amazing Spider-Man movie. (Well, I say missing . . . .) Which means I can now watch the Multiverse of Madness trailer without being spoiled. I don't know how many of you are in the same boat I was in; we wanted to see this in the theatre, but it didn't work out for pandemic- and not-pandemic-reasons. However, as with as…

  • Murders in the Zoo

    Murders in the Zoo

    ★★★

    Zoo Design Has Come a Long Way

    The principle behind zoos has changed a lot in the ninety years since this movie was made. There's at least lip service paid here to the idea of science, given the herpetology lab at this zoo, but it's quite clear that in general, it's considered to be there for the sake of public entertainment. The children want to go to the zoo because they want to feed the bears. (They're Himalayan black bears,…

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  • Life Itself

    Life Itself

    ★★★★★

    Another Lost Father Figure

    Dear Roger,

    It's not like you'd be surprised it wasn't nominated. I think we could have shared a grim smile, if you'd still been able to smile. No, of course Steve James wasn't nominated for Best Documentary Feature for this, even though it's better than Finding Vivian Maier. Leaving aside that there seems to always be one mediocre film nominated in the category, every year, we could share a grumble about Hoop Dreams. If you'd still…

  • The Year My Parents Went on Vacation

    The Year My Parents Went on Vacation

    ★★★★½

    Exile

    I'm always slightly ashamed when movies take place during events I know nothing about. I get the slight dodge here of having it happen before my lifetime, but I'd have to do a fair amount of reading to fully understand the political events that form the background of this film. I know that this is smack in the middle of the Cold War. I know that it's from an era where much of Central and South America was run…