• Eva Braun

    Eva Braun

    ★½

    Combatting fascism with the most uninteresting art possible. This runs the Pasolini gauntlet of critiquing the brutishness of militarist oppression through heinous farce, but abandons what made Pasolini’s gross, overly cruel approach to anti-totalitarianism at least vaguely watchable, which is the static scathe underneath the mask of exploitation. Distaste doesn’t exist here. The suffering of others is an open field for cropping up “edgy” art.

  • PVC Feces Rig Tour (Home Made) #vanlife

    PVC Feces Rig Tour (Home Made) #vanlife

    ★★★★

    “You can make money doing anything now” is the supreme over/understatement of labor in the internet age. There is a niche for anything and everything found in all corners of the fabric of reality, and this bends each segment of dirty cloth over itself and through a total Gordian knot of lenses to demonstrate that the camera is the beholder and obscurer of all matter. Effectively montages all sorts of textures and quasi-dimensional garnishes you’ve never seen before, accompanied with…

  • Uncharted

    Uncharted

    ★★

    I’m working on a running theory that action movies of this ilk are made for Dwayne Johnson and then retconned when he declines to star. ‘Uncharted’ was never fully charming through Nathan’s personality compensating for his antisocial disregard for human life nor the post-Indy action on a global scale, but the concept of an Everyman surviving the most prodigious worst case scenarios on ambition alone. “Greatness from small beginnings” was the story’s mantra and the crux of its chaos; a…

  • Prey

    Prey

    ★★★★

    The tribe always wins. Instantaneously one of *the* filmic statements of the year, a potent return to form for The Predator and a wistful artistic progression of what the creature represents. Those oceans of pine and river are a capsule of the beauty behind indigenous experience: nature not tamed but rather symbioticized with those who are at the cross-way between warrior and mediator, ranger and architect. Ingenuity bleeds green from this. Kinetic and powerful, and jarringly more of a gory(!!!)…

  • The Moth Diaries

    The Moth Diaries

    ★★★★

    Girls that locked brimstone eyes. Vampires of yore are predators in plain sight, siphoning marrow out of the vulnerable, and this is the tale as it was written. A demon that may be a ghost with a Victorian grin. I have a theory that Mary Harron was sabotaged out of the gate when this was advertised as straightforward horror, because it’s much more glacial and formally outré than it’s billed as. Gothic romance viewed from the seat of a bystander while maintaining loyalty to melodrama and disquieting architectural sinistra. So pretty, so dead.

  • They/Them

    They/Them

    Exhibit A for how paycheck-minded progress circles back to regression. It's ironic that this labors to satirize conservative talking points while it feeds into them. Coyly tossing out "trust the science" with tongue so firmly in cheek that the jawbone is ready to crumble, right in front of the trans woman who was discriminately forced into the boy's cabin because she didn't broadcast her penis to everyone. The DeLargeian shock therapy sequence is fetishistic drivel, right at home with almost…

  • Cosmos

    Cosmos

    ★★★★

    Pinnacle of screaming trees. Twilight year artists look back on their careers and reflect, Żuławski looks back and scoffs. His art has felt like a bottle of lightning that broke open and evaded capture, to the point that even his quietest moments never felt *static*, and this feels like a shot of distaste into the cinematic vein that gave him lifeblood. Intellectualism positioned as the real definition of nonsense, as art is for the impulsive. A Crow Hymn, bidding farewell in a mocking tone.

  • The Blood of a Poet

    The Blood of a Poet

    ★★★★

    Big arms, a small planet. Cocteau treats the medium in the way brain fog treats the train of thought: obfuscating what is the “natural” order of imagination and conceptualization. Chemistry changes its makeup, the blood of masculine figures drips out as beckoning words, survivalism and anger boxed into neat little montages of symbols that carry dark, dark memories. Surrealism is the absence of textual clarity, but these are obvious marks of something upsetting that stirred a creative mind in a pool of dynorphin. Stunning and stateless. “Air, air.”

  • Look At Me: XXXTENTACION

    Look At Me: XXXTENTACION

    ★★

    Jahseh was, beyond being the spearhead for emo trap, a generational wake up call for the pattern of self-destruction and outward turmoil among alternative hip-hop artists. There is a cultural conversation about how young rappers seem to drop like flies, and that is a conversation that X’s loved ones don’t seem to entertain nearly as much as acknowledging his horrible actions (his well-documented abuse of Geneva Ayala) and somehow still sugarcoating them. So many nuances exist within his downward spiral,…

  • RRR

    RRR

    ★★★

    Adventures of Old, back for awhile. This is indisputably a tour de inertia and prime introduction piece for India, as crisp as vines and actually *radiating* a sense of artistic exhibitionism; craftsmanship and blood-pumpage in tandem, enlivening a barren blockbuster generation. Yet, as a Westerner, I feel I’ve lost the plot on something grave to its socio-political, worldly elements. The glorification of the BJP and wafts of Hindu nationalist(?) principles is something that taints whatever Bollywood progressivism this aims for,…

  • Bubble

    Bubble

    ★★

    Tokyo represented as a scarcely survivable Ground Zero is nothing short of chilling; a place so populous reduced to rubble and faint imprints of the world that existed before it. Somewhere in here exists a beauteous doomsday faerie tale, but it’s underneath a water blanket of Shinkai and throwaway anime. The apocalypse is an opportunity for challenging and morbid visual ideas, but this is garishly crafted for wide-scale, thoughtless consumption. Make anime many things, but don’t make it stale.

  • Severance

    Severance

    ★★★½

    Torture porn desk jobs, hiring. In a time when New French Extremity and Rothian slashers were the norm, it’s obviously intriguing to see a sanitized-but-not-toothless, faithfully gory perspective like Christopher Smith’s where the premise of office henchmen being thrown to the slaughter is a warped ‘Better Off Ted’ satire. Death is excusable, but the team exercise must go on.