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  • Three Colors: Blue

    Three Colors: Blue

    ★★★★★

    With each film of his I see, I edge closer and closer to officially naming Krysztof Kieślowski one of my favourite directors. It’s not really surprising, therefore, that returning to the first film of his that I watched - 1993’s Blue, the initial entry in the director’s tripartite swan song the Three Colours trilogy - I would be able to view it with a greater level of understanding and appreciation.

    The odd thing is that, looking at the four-star review…

  • The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover

    The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover

    ★★★★★

    There are many ways of looking at The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover, but for the purposes of this review there are two in particular. One is as political allegory, in which capacity the film is practically the opposite of subtle, though it’s arguably this very lack of subtlety that makes Peter Greenaway’s metaphors so compelling and enjoyable to parse. The other way of looking at the film is as a formal exercise - and however one wants…

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  • Faces

    Faces

    ★★★½

    I was absolutely dreading revisiting this, and I certainly don't love it very much more than when I first took a crack at it. For one thing, it's too long, and for another, too much of it feels like a group acting exercise. But what acting! Each character is imbued with a vivid, distinct personality, and watching Rowlands and Marley, Marley and Carlin and Carlin and Cassel play off each other (in that order) makes for some revealing and fascinating insights into how human beings behave around one another, even while much of the behaviour itself is stilted and indulgent.

    Ranking John Cassavetes

  • Starstruck

    Starstruck

    ★★★½

    The production design and lighting are absolutely stellar, all strident blues and reds, and I liked the juxtaposition between the mundane humour of the protagonists' everyday lives and the snazzy vitality of the musical numbers (all of which are excitingly staged, though the film makes the mistake of putting its best one - an electrifying piece of work with some strikingly angular choreography - first). Stephen Maclean's dialogue is funny and smart, but he can't construct a good story to…

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  • Singin' in the Rain

    Singin' in the Rain

    ★★★★★

    I've been feeling pretty crappy lately, and I've decided that, from now on, I'll watch a favourite of mine whenever I'm like this to remind me that all is not lost. I'm going to have a hard time topping tonight's selection, Singin' in the Rain - a film I more or less grew up with, which is something I'll be eternally grateful for. I can't imagine my life without this film, one of the happiest there is. Nor do I…

  • Citizen Kane

    Citizen Kane

    ★★★★★

    As we are all aware, there are not enough reviews of Citizen Kane in the world, much less reviews that trumpet it as a timeless 5-star masterpiece. I’m only being half-sarcastic. It’s becoming increasingly common on Letterboxd (and I would imagine elsewhere on the internet) to do one of two things: praise the film simply because it’s Citizen Kane and what is one to do but praise Citizen Kane, or take the contrarian route and claim it isn’t half as…