Impossible for me to rate this because I feel indifferent to at least half (if not more) of this film, which felt monotonous and like a constant repetition of the impressive (but increasingly dull) action choreography style that this franchise has trademarked. But everything else, specifically the section of the film set in Paris, is a nearly incomprehensible achievement, the likes of which I’ve never seen in a blockbuster aside from Fury Road. Not ashamed whatsoever to admit I nearly…
After Yang 2021
Flawed in very frustrating ways, yet there’s a profound beauty coursing through the center that makes this impossible not to love. Even it’s flaws are fascinating; I see After Yang as being directly of a piece with Crimes of the Future— both present thematically overstuffed techno-futures with a narrative flow more akin to a pair of miniseries episodes than a feature-length film. Although the films contrast in episode placement; Crimes is the beginning of a story, while After Yang is functionally the…
The Matrix 1999
Decent, but all dramatic stakes went out the window once I realized Neo had the ability to turn his fingers into hot dogs and didn’t. Just completely unbelievable. Who gives a shit about “Bullet Time” when you could have hot dogs for fingers??
Scream VI 2023
Making a filmic entry in a franchise devoted to calling attention to cliches, only to drown said entry in cliches even more fundamentally embarrassing (and easier to avoid) than the ones you’re calling attention to, is not a good look! Stop shouting before you shoot a gun! Stop putting off a kill so you can monologue first! Stop running away when you have the chance to kill Ghostface before he hurts you! Stop making “smart” horror movies where your characters act like idiots because it only further draws attention to how dumb they are!
It's Complicated 2009
If this is what Nancy does with $85 Million, I’m dying to see what she can do with $130M and Michael goddamn Fassbender
Everything Everywhere All at Once 2022
This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Unsurprisingly, a rewatch of this revealed that it was nowhere near as bad as I had originally suspected but also nowhere near what it has come to represent. Regardless, its reached a point where the film is so omnipresent in the film culture that its impossible for me to continue underrating this purely because of how much people talk about it-- in other words, this rating is (hype withstanding) exactly how I feel about the movie. It helps that I've…
Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania 2023
As someone who tends to be nicer on Marvel than they deserve, and who came in with expectations of this being slightly underwhelming at worst, it’s shocking how firmly I believe this thing (which I wouldn’t dare call a “film”) is an abomination. A dramatically inert, horribly rendered mess which so fundamentally depletes this universe of any stakes going forward that it makes the entire enterprise worthless. Shockingly, despite being Peyton Reed’s third Ant-Man film, there’s absolutely no development or genuine emotion…
Magic Mike's Last Dance 2023
Nowhere near as good as XXL, but who am I to expect perfection AGAIN?! Sometimes just cheering along with a room full of middle-aged white women at Soderbergh’s stylistic choices (that’s what they were cheering for, right?) is enough.
Absolute fucking dynamite. Chazelle’s Eyes Wide Shut, Inherent Vice, Jackie Brown, After Hours, Miami Vice, etc.; an undeservedly ridiculed gem that people will, 15-20 years after it’s release, suggest/realize is the masterwork of one of our greatest living filmmakers. Which Babylon is. The film strings you along on a maniacally glorious thrill ride for so long you might begin questioning the film’s purpose, only to hit you with one of the best (and likely the most divisive) endings in years.…
The Whale 2022
From the get-go, the film has a clear problem with how it positions Charlie. Even before getting to the camera (which makes the problems so much worse), calling this The Whale is disgusting. I’ve seen the film; I know what the metaphor means, and that’s fine. But it’s a clear play at words, and the released poster all but affirms to any person looking at this film from the outside who would think our lead character is “The Whale”. For…
Avatar: The Way of Water 2022
Avatar is still not good, and even less so in the face of The Way of Water, which is hands down a better film in every way; almost inconceivably so. Latches onto the few aspects of the original film that even its haters would admit still work and improves everything else. I’ve spent so long caring about every new Marvel film that I forgot what it was like to see a blockbuster have real world building and actually make you care about characters…
Portrait of a Lady on Fire 2019
Kinda the perfect example (for me) of The Big Picture’s “Get everyone together and try again” experiment; the film isn’t perfect, but every aspect of this film that works for me is operating at a scale beyond comprehension (Mathon, Merlant, Sciamma’s direction) that I’d feel fine with it’s stature if some of its more glaring problems were fixed.
1. The opening scene/set-up to the story is downright atrocious. It feels like Sciamma and co. would’ve realized how cliché it was…