jackkyser has written 60 reviews for films during 2019.

  • Little Women

    Little Women

    ★★★★★

    "And then they realized, they were no longer little girls... they were little women." - Moe Szyslak

  • Richard Jewell

    Richard Jewell

    ★★★★★

    Richard Jewell is my favorite Clint Eastwood film since the underappreciated J. Edgar (2011), which also deals with the flaws of the FBI and law enforcement. The film continues Eastwood’s fascination with heroism, and in particular the personal toll on perceived heroes held under a microscope (in this case, a hero turned suspect). You can find this thematic concern in Flags of Our Fathers (2006), American Sniper (2014) and Sully (2016) - but it’s never been dramatized more sharply than…

  • Dolemite Is My Name

    Dolemite Is My Name

    ★★★★★

    The fact that my favorite Eddie Murphy movie is Bowfinger (1999) was a huge indicator I would love this movie. As expected, Dolemite is My Name is absolutely fantastic and Murphy is electric in it - particularly in his solo scenes, when he’s looking into a mirror and wrestling with his personal demons.

    For what it’s worth, he also does the funniest impression of Linda Blair from The Exorcist I’ve ever seen.

  • Detour

    Detour

    ★★★★★

    An incredible restoration on Criterion! It’s very much worth watching the accompanying featurette on how they restored this film without access to the original negative.

    This entire movie is fantastic noir - but the second Ann Savage shows up, a lighting bolt truly hits the screen.

  • Italianamerican

    Italianamerican

    ★★★★★

    Viewed as part of Scorsese Non-Fiction series at Film Forum, followed by a characteristically informative and fascinating Q&A with Scorsese and Kent Jones. Instead of making a traditional documentary about his family lineage, Scorsese just allows us to hang out with his endearingly charismatic parents, Charles and Catherine. Like their son, they are born storytellers. As Scorsese said, he basically just rolled the camera and allowed his parents to take control. What follows is a beautiful companion piece to the…

  • The Neighborhood

    The Neighborhood

    ★★★★★

    Viewed as part of Scorsese Non-Fiction series at Film Forum. A fascinating short piece on Scorsese’s childhood neighborhood in Little Italy, with an emphasis placed on the extraordinary contributions by the neighborhood’s Italian and Irish immigrants. Made during the post-production of Gangs of New York, and particularly resonant given the recent events of September 11th, 2001 in lower Manhattan.

  • Marriage Story

    Marriage Story

    ★★★★★

    Noah Baumbach’s Marriage Story hits hard. The scenes in this film - full of immense tenderness, searingly raw arguments and heartbreaking exchanges - have replayed themselves in my mind over the last twenty-four hours. The journey of Charlie (Adam Driver) and Nicole (Scarlett Johannson) feels so much larger, more detailed and more real than anything I usually experience over the course of two hours in a cinema. In short, this movie destroyed me.

    Marriage Story is filled with a well…

  • Knives Out

    Knives Out

    ★★★★★

    Rian Johnson’s Knives Out is an absolute blast, with a deliciously southern Daniel Craig and a great turn from Ana de Armas. Both a mystery and a dissection of class hierarchy, with beautiful ending use of Sweet Virginia by The Rolling Stones, and an ensemble made for the top SAG award.

  • Motherless Brooklyn

    Motherless Brooklyn

    ★★★★★

    I was eager to revisit Edward Norton’s passion project, Motherless Brooklyn, as I was absolutely enthralled by the film a few weeks ago - until the jackass in front of me starting openly vaping in the cinema.

    Tonight, I saw the film with a far more respectful audience, and I adored it even more. It’s exactly the kind of endangered mid-budget studio film cinephiles yearn for, but everybody has slept on it.

    As Lionel Essrog, a gumshoe afflicted by both…

  • Jojo Rabbit

    Jojo Rabbit

    ★★★★★

    Writer, director and actor Taika Waititi has blazed a trail of original filmmaking over the last ten years, yielding such idiosyncratic and hilarious films as Hunt for the Wilderpeople (2016) and What We Do in the Shadows (2014). Shortly after the success of those films, Marvel hired him to infuse some liveliness into Thor: Ragnarok two years ago. With Jojo Rabbit, Waititi is thankfully now back to making his own unique creations – only this time, he now has the…

  • Ford v Ferrari

    Ford v Ferrari

    ★★★★★

    James Mangold’s Ford v Ferrari is a thrilling film - one that pulses with life and exuberance. The racetrack scenes are incredibly choreographed and filmed, but the movie excels because it’s primarily about people, not cars.

    In a way, the film almost seems like a well-calibrated metaphor for the making of a motion picture. There are the suits (Henry Ford II) who run the studio; the producer/ middle man who understands both the logistics and the artistry of the endeavor…

  • The Irishman

    The Irishman

    ★★★★★

    Happy birthday, dear Martin Scorsese. To celebrate, I saw this masterpiece for the fourth time in cinemas today - on Broadway this time, in the Belasco Theatre, which was quite an experience. Like Frank Sheeran, I’m very loyal.