Favorite films

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  • Extinct

    ★½

  • Annette

    ★★★★

  • The Card Counter

    ★★½

  • Belfast

    ★★

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  • Annette

    Annette

    ★★★★

    Dazzling - if obviously theatrical - to look at, beautiful colours, probably the first musical about murder since Dancer in the Dark (I'm not counting Burton's Sweeney Todd, and The Lure was way too weird to be just a musical) and similarly self-conscious about exposing its own meta scaffolding, the accompanist singing a song about being an accompanist and so on. 'Don't breathe', goes the opening admonition, and of course you hold your breath (in awe) when something is spectacular…

  • The Card Counter

    The Card Counter

    ★★½

    I'd be totally down for two hours of Oscar Isaac gliding around casinos and performing his weird little rituals, with velvety visuals and a thrumming synth score (I could even take Schrader's usual obsession with guilt and redemption, and the V.O. saying stuff like "Is there an end to punishment?"), but unfortunately this goes in other, less satisfying directions. The central relationship is semi-convincing in the abstract, Bill's interest in 'the kid' being to secretly dissuade him from taking the…

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  • Space Jam: A New Legacy

    Space Jam: A New Legacy

    ★★

    Everything is product.

    Granny from Tweety and Sylvester fighting in The Matrix because hey, Warner Bros.

    Yet the message of the film is 'Be yourself! Do your own special thing!'.

    We love our corporate overlords.

  • Margaret

    Margaret

    ★★★★★

    Held me spellbound for three hours, if nothing else (extended cut, fwiw). 25th HOUR-ish - New York movie, moral drama about Doing the Right Thing, symphonic score over jagged rhythms - also Desplechin-ish for the sweep and scale, but more ambitious than either: an epic of human disconnection, based around the fact that language is such an imperfect way of trying to connect - emotion is easier, but we lose it as we grow older ("It is Margaret you mourn…