• All Light, Everywhere

    All Light, Everywhere

    ★★★★★

    Takes all of the collective fears and worries involving surveillance and the very act of watching and multiples it tenfold by exposing the dead areas and spaces in-between of what we think we know. What Subject to Review did for tennis is what this does for the entire history of images, both in motion and in stillness. Anthony compiles what feels like could easily be 3 hours into 105 sprawling minutes. No other filmmaker from the DMV is doing it…

  • Any Given Sunday

    Any Given Sunday

    ★★★★★

    Falls into that nebelous "they don't make them like this anymore" category because they truly do not. Closest thing to it since might be The Wolf of Wall Street in its grandiosity, even in the smallest of moments. Moves with cathartic intensity in its every weaving of the business and personal lives of the players, coaches and legacy heads eternally haunted and controlled by those before them. A new form of the sports star spawns at the very edge of the 20th century, as economics and cold math take over humanity and dictate the very existence of black athletes on and off the field.

  • Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice

    Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice

    ★★★★

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    In his most recent interview this past week, Alan Moore said:

    This may be entirely coincidence but in 2016 when the American people elected a National Socialist satsuma and the UK voted to leave the European Union, six of the top 12 highest grossing films were superhero movies. Not to say that one causes the other but I think they’re both symptoms of the same thing – a denial of reality and an urge for simplistic and sensational solutions.

    BvS…

  • The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

    The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

    ★★★★★

    Moves through what feels like an ever-expanding web of threads and analog details that begin to reveal themselves and connect into place through the digital. Utilizing the tools of the future to solve the forever haunting past and Mikael/Lisbeth further enlarges this dichotomy, down to their very existences and functions in society. Their stories don't converge until nearly halfway into its 2hr and 40 runtime, ever so patient and heavy in the research aspects of investigation that it is no…

  • Beau Travail

    Beau Travail

    ★★★★

    Overwhelming proof that Denis is in a class of her own. Her effortless marriage of mood and style, but even more so her ability to maintain it without it being muddled down within a historical/political context. Repression as the ultimate prison for those without identity, without a place or even a country to call home. Mere instruments of the state traversing through alien landscapes. Denis' deft understanding of the complex nuances of masculinity trumps what most of her male peers have done. A war picture for the ages with one of the greatest endings of all time.

  • Mainstream

    Mainstream

    ★★

    More so concerned with the rippling effects of online antics and its distortion of reality above anything else. The hybrid use of relevant internet figures from different online corners and fictitious ones adds on to this but isn't rich in enough in commentary or even subtext to take it where it wants to go. Scattered cute moments throughout are massively outweighed by more cringe-inducing ones, holding it back from what could have been.

  • Tenet

    Tenet

    ★★★★

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    Pushes as hard as it can with the abstraction of characters, but doesn’t go fully into making them complete vessels. Having them purely move as ghosts in international non-places, running off fractured identities would have elevated the entirety of what Nolan is really trying to do. The lack of emotion and such allows for the conceptual to take over and put the sequences into a different mode of effectiveness. But with the final act essentially boiling down to “stop the time bomb”, it is more of a noticeable hinderance to the previous 2 hours on a repeat viewing.

  • Tenet

    Tenet

    ★★★★½

    Hauntology 101 and maybe 102. Usual flaws of Nolan's work are still here and there (the over-explanation of ideas and themes), but doesn't do any serious damage to what is on display. Never feels gimmicky, but always warranted in its use of manipulation for both metaphysical grandiosity and smaller character moments. The weaponization of knowledge and data. Battlefields and surveillance that can’t be bound by standard practice, becoming infinite. Worlds where the billionaires and the people in the shadows are…

  • Glass

    Glass

    ★★★★½

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    Constantly undermining itself and its very existence with so much power that it's almost insulting to refer to this and the trilogy with the s*perh*ro label. Defying audience expectations left and right with the hyping up of the grand third act spectacle of battle, only to turn around and deny it in favor of something truly human. The collective power of belief, to rise up and push back against the systems and flip the very same tools they use against us to work against them. The eternal quest for truth is a suicide mission. Freedom through death, but forever immortalized in image.

  • Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk

    Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk

    ★★★½

    With this being possibly one of the most important films of the century, the very fact that this even exists and saw the light of day is enough.

  • The Spectacular Now

    The Spectacular Now

    ★★★★½

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    Evades most of the trappings of the genre it occupies with ease without overcomplicating what it's doing in the process. Moving with organic progression rather than with forced momentum like many of its counterparts, it allows for the awkward moments and conversations between Sutter and Aimee to flourish effectively. The archetypical popular guy/shy girl dynamic becomes more layered as their shared paternal trauma that inflicts their present relationships is revealed. Sutter's alcoholism that Ponsoldt mainly keeps after-school-preachy free and the end-of-high school woes that plagues every senior student keeps this eternally relevant. Easily one of the best displays of young romantic chemistry in the last decade.

  • Knight of Cups

    Knight of Cups

    ★★★★½

    Continues to be his most radical effort post-Tree of Life, as Malick ventures into something more ephemeral than any of his past works. Video game references, multiple narrators coming in and out and a deeper experimentation of digital image that is reminiscent of late Godard puts this into a category of its own. Elevates itself to become more than something just based on the story of where the title stems from. Memories and histories recollected out of order, collapsing in…