Favorite films

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  • Pig
  • The Green Knight
  • The French Dispatch

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  • Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

    ★★★★

  • The Duke

    ★★★

  • Memories of Murder

    ★★★★

  • Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

    ★★★★½

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  • Phantom Thread

    Phantom Thread

    ★★★★★

    "Desire's the element that I can't fight;
    Dream is the arm of God.
    Girls looking for themselves in your eyes,
    I'm looking for you.
    Was this supposed to be some kind of perfect?
    I want more..."

    - Sam Phillips, "If I Could Write"

    Alma wants more.

    More than to be a tool in Woodcock's toolkit. She wants a partnership. A relationship. She wants to be family. And the gaping hole left by the loss of Woodcock's mother might just be…

  • Close Encounters of the Third Kind

    Close Encounters of the Third Kind

    ★★★★★

    40th Anniversary theatrical release.

    If you possibly can, round up your family and friends and go see Close Encounters while it's back for a short run in theaters.

    I saw it last night on a big, big screen in a theater with about six other moviegoers. It reminded me once again that "cinema" is a different art form than "movies." And it reminded me that Steven Spielberg 1975-1981 was an artist working on an altogether different level than what he's…

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  • Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

    Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

    ★★★★

    I've gone digging in my DVD library to bring this back as a way to cope with the sadness of finishing Slow Horses Season One.

    Does anybody have a recommendation for another great series or film that would scratch this particular itch for a messy, cerebral spy thriller?

  • The Duke

    The Duke

    ★★★

    Broadbent is in a familiar mode here: lovable, good-hearted, a little dopey, talking to almost everyone like a doting grandfather talks to his small grandchildren. I can't imagine he need to prep at all. It's a far simpler character, and simpler performance, than his best work as a likable neighbor in Mike Leigh's Another Year. I always enjoy watching him, but this material is almost too slight for him.

    (But, man — has any actor been more reliable and stable than…

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  • Gosford Park

    Gosford Park

    ★★★★★

    16 THINGS ABOUT GOSFORD PARK

    1. Still my favorite Altman film.
    2. Still head and shoulders above the entirety of Downton Abbey.
    3. Still the most virtuosic choreography of a large ensemble cast I've ever seen.
    4. I miss Clive Owen.
    5. That scene with Tom Hollander eating jam in the cellar. That scene.
    6. I believe that when he goes home from work, Richard E. Grant dresses and behaves just like this.
    7. All of the moments with Claudie…

  • The Innocents

    The Innocents

    ★★★★

    Name one movie that is

    a) directed by a woman,
    b) filmed by a woman,
    c) about women, and
    d) deeply concerned with matters of faith.

    I can think of many films directed by men, and focusing on men, that rigorously wrestle with questions about God and the problem of evil. But The Innocents is a remarkably rare event.

    Here's my full review.