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  • Suspiria

    Suspiria

    ★★★★

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    First off, full disclosure: I'm nuts about the original Suspiria. I don't personally know anyone who's a bigger fan of it than I am.

    That's why it feels almost sacrilegious to admit this: there are things that Luca Guadagnino's Suspiria achieves that Dario Argento's should have but didn't.

    2018 Suspiria actually manages to inform the plot with the historical subtext of the time; in 1977, Berlin was in socio-political upheaval. It's a sinister undercurrent spoken off in the background on…

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  • Pinocchio

    Pinocchio

    ★★★★

    There's one word to describe this film: magical.

    You'd think, of course, that the film couldn't surprise you. The story is largely the same as what you've seen in other iterations, most notably the 1940 Disney animated movie, but with Pinocchio's (and several other puppets') wooden countenance and various animal faces being created by prosthetics and makeup--Oscar-nominated--instead of VFX, it's a unique and mystical experience. If enough Academy voters watch the film, there's no reason why this would lose the…

  • Here and There

    Here and There

    ★★★★

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    Dito at Doon is another strong entry in the genre that Filipino films seem to have been excelling in for the last few years. Local cinema has always loved romance, but the crop of movies that have come out in the last decade, among them gems like Sana Dati (2013), That Thing Called Tadhana (2014), and Never Not Love You (2018), have been generally more smartly written and technically polished than their predecessors. Another thing that most of these movies…

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  • Malcolm & Marie

    Malcolm & Marie

    ★★★½

    Malcolm & Marie tries to say too much in as loud a voice and with as many utterances of "f**k" as possible. The lack of finesse and restraint in the writing and direction can get quite tiring.

    But boy oh boy those performances are ELECTRIC. John David Washington and Zendaya deserve Oscar nominations. Hell, Oscar WINS would not be undeserved.

  • Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

    Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

    ★★★★½

    If you've heard that Chadwick Boseman will probably win a posthumous Best Actor Oscar for his performance in this film, you've heard it right. He is phenomenal in this movie. Chilling. And Viola Davis is something else, too. She's always amazing but here she's a freaking bulldozer of a woman, unglamorous and unsympathetic but larger than life. You can tell that the film is an adaptation of a stage play because of the way a lot of the scenes, particularly the dialogues and the monologues, are staged. It's all electrifying. Terrific ensemble and elegant direction.