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  • The Ballad of Cable Hogue
  • Sonatine
  • Eyes of the Spider
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  • Eyes of the Spider

  • The Revenge: A Scar That Never Disappears

  • Suit Yourself or Shoot Yourself: The Hero

  • Suit Yourself or Shoot Yourself: The Nouveau Riche

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  • Zombie Flesh Eaters

    Zombie Flesh Eaters

    Post-narrative. This is not to confirm the common (mis)conception that Fulci is narratively inept (this idea is directly contrasted earlier in his career: Don't Torture a Duckling is a fluid network narrative decades ahead of the vogue; Beatrice Cenci cogently layers differing flashbacks, investigations, and personal reflections). Rather, Fulci here begins his radical stage (culminating in the films he'd make in the 1980s) of dismantling linear plot in order to explore ideas or aesthetics.

    Fulci, however, does not fully abandon…

  • Predator

    Predator

    Not as fluid as McTiernan films to come -- he finessed his cutting philosophy with Frank Urioste and Jan de Bont during the production and post-production of Die Hard -- but clearly, robustly the work of a born filmmaker. Not only for his ability to create space out of the jungle, but also for his ability to give a plastic reality to thought and emotion through the camera.

    The long takes are unassuming yet sinuous: a dolly shot of the…

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  • Eyes of the Spider

    Eyes of the Spider

    "Charisma came out in ’99, Pulse was 2000, and I think the vague idea I had at the time was that we were really on the cusp of a new century. The idea was to abandon, by destroying everything from the 20th century in order to head into a good, new future. It wasn’t that the apocalyptic vision was negative or despairing, it was positive, a way to get rid of old baggage."

    -Kurosawa, in conversation with Reverse Shot

    "On…

  • The Revenge: A Scar That Never Disappears

    The Revenge: A Scar That Never Disappears

    Like its predecessor, more dark ambient play with genre frameworks, but a move away from the classical arc there. We're still in familiar territory — avenger gone dark, mirroring between Law and Criminality — but de-centered from driving narrative purpose. One of Kurosawa's most outwardly despairing, essentially Eyes of the Spider without that film's quietly radical tonal experiments or transvaluing humor, it's a film on entropy, for institutions and individuals alike, told in a series of rhymes between two declining…

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  • Zack Snyder's Justice League

    Zack Snyder's Justice League

    There will be plenty of other reviews covering this film's themes, relationship to its predecessors, etc., so just a brief note on its form. Because what struck me, on first viewing (even on a sub-optimal rip), was its ability to inspire awe in the superheroic -- no small feat on a desktop screen, in a questionably chosen aspect ratio. Actual wonder in the spectacle.

    The similarities to the Whedon cut only make Snyder's unique action that much more palpable. And…

  • Die Hard

    Die Hard

    Practically a musical, McTiernan, Urioste, Kamen so in tune that it becomes a choreography of formalized emotion and adrenal thrills. The wealth in observation can distract one in multiple interpretive directions -- husband fighting for wife after losing his supremacy in the family, in the ultimate (constantly exploding) phallus; overtures to the fabled end of history: emissaries of multiple continents meeting in one space spliced together from Western modernism and Eastern minimalism, fighting over a vault of bearer bonds, Asian…