Oliver has written 8 reviews for films rated ★★★ during 2021.

  • 9/21/21

    9/21/21

    ★★★

    Anima (2021)

  • Sexy Beast

    Sexy Beast

    ★★★

    The acting, ambition, and staying power are all there, with Glazer establishing himself as a unique avant-garde filmmaker, but the direction is sometimes overkill, the bizarreness doesn’t fit with the material at hand, and the story is a little too short and simple for my taste—considering the tedious buildup.

  • Fast Five

    Fast Five

    ★★★

    Action-packed and decent fun, Fast Five is nothing too remarkable although it does boast some unique set pieces and solid stunt work, and the plot—albeit somewhat predictable and questionable at times—offers some surprises, and while certainly the most ambitious entry thus far, it launched the series in a new direction that would change it forever.

  • Wrath of Man

    Wrath of Man

    ★★★

    The action is tense, the film becomes gradually suspenseful as it moves along, and Ritchie further proves his love of nonlinear plot structures and panache, but these things cannot elevate a typical revenge story and weak writing that prevent this grim crime thriller from delivering a solid punch in the end.

  • Another Round

    Another Round

    ★★★

    Another Round’s strong performances and novel concept can’t overcome a predictable narrative structure with mixed messages and consequently an ineffective eventual catharsis.

  • Promising Young Woman

    Promising Young Woman

    ★★★

    An arresting and well-acted but messy feminist revenge thriller with an intriguing story whose bold final act and social agenda about the dangers of sexual assault and people’s carelessness are hindered by the inept delivery of its ending and a sudden lack of rationality.

  • Mank

    Mank

    ★★★

    Although well-crafted and -acted for a period piece, the unfocused, superficial, and meandering plot and predominant lack of conflict make this one of Fincher’s weaker films and a disappointing snapshot into the making of a groundbreaking masterpiece.

  • The Devil All the Time

    The Devil All the Time

    ★★★

    The narration can be intrusive and laborious at times, Robert Pattinson further proves that he struggles with accents, and the plot could have used a little more work, but The Devil All the Time is still a pretty solid adaptation whose ending—despite the film’s incessantly grim nature—is surprisingly hopeful.