• Howl's Moving Castle

    Howl's Moving Castle



    Scattered with a few of the greatest pastures in the cinema. Such overwhelming beauty. Cried basically nonstop during the final act, which is just as narratively nonsensical as its reputation, but it nonetheless carries the burden of a heavy heart with grace and whimsy.

  • Elemental




    A typical outing from Pixar. Plenty of conceptual and allegorical world-building, air-tight (and rigid to a fault) narrative structure, and dazzled all up with a lovely animation style. You know the game at this point. This is cute and fun and charming, although certainly nowhere near the heights of Pixar's 2000s period.

  • Bram Stoker's Dracula

    Bram Stoker's Dracula



    Basically every shot in this movie is the greatest shit to ever be captured on film. Sony's 4K disc goes so crazy. Felt like I was in Transylvania.

  • Scream




    "But this is life. This isn't a movie."

    "Sure it is, Sid. It's all a movie. It's all one great big movie."

  • A Haunting in Venice

    A Haunting in Venice



    Less enthused with star-studded ensembles (Orient Express) or camp artifice (Death on the Nile), Kenneth Branagh takes Agatha Christie's 'Halloween Party' and brings it to Venice in the middle of a torrential downpour. Hardly any CG gloss here. Real locations, carnivorous spaces, with a mystery that's less of a crowd-pleaser and more of a sobering, futile reckoning with guilt. It's a real tone shift for a series that has first and foremost been easy afternoon viewing for matinee audiences.…

  • Sleepy Hollow

    Sleepy Hollow



    Definitely has a bit of post 2000s-Tim Burton in its structure. It offers up a weak mystery with a disappointing expository climax (complete with a standard 90s action set-piece set in a windmill), and the tone is all over the map. Even still, the bones of this movie are found in the suffocating autumnal mood. Alongside Coppola's Dracula, this version of Sleepy Hollow is extravagant in its period details, with the range of influence from Universal Horror to Hammer…

  • The Nun II

    The Nun II



    Not good. If The Nun took inspiration from nonsense italian gothic horror and fog-shrouded nightmare loops, its sequel is more standardized and suited for the conjuring-verse. Jump scares, creepy nuns, catholic adventure globetrotting with relics and ancient mysteries. It hits all of the predictable beats. Director Michael Chaves just isn't really a great stylist, and the often adequate formal elements on display here just makes the entire experience feel stale. It works as a spooky machine but I miss the Romanian castle set-design and suffocating toxic atmosphere of the first film.

  • Sorcerer





    Into the heart of darkness. Nail-biting suspense. A work of exploitation and labor, with a harrowing final note. Mr. Friedkin, we all miss you. Thank you for the movies.

  • Bottoms




    Funny as hell. It's been a relatively good summer for quality comedies. This maintains such a high level of mania throughout, with wacky displays of violence and gay frustration that ultimately work to smooth out any typical high school movie tropes. The cast absolutely goes for it, and it helps that most of the jokes stick the landing. Not quite at Superbad's level, but certainly in the same irreverent league as something like 21 Jump Street or Not Another Teen Movie.

  • The Return of the Living Dead

    The Return of the Living Dead



    Surfin' dead.

    Gosh, the nuance and detail of the characterization in this zombie comedy is way above the norm. It always takes me by surprise. Not to mention the *tremendous* gore effects, which lend a gross-out edge and an existential reckoning to its highlight reel of zany antics. Brains to keep the pain at bay.

  • You Are So Not Invited to My Bat Mitzvah

    You Are So Not Invited to My Bat Mitzvah



    Pair it with Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret for a definitive Jewish middle school double feature.

  • Jurassic Park

    Jurassic Park



    3D re-release

    "But with this place, I wanted to show them something that wasn't an illusion. Something that was real. Something that they could see and touch."

    Maybe the most casual flex from our greatest blockbuster mythmaker. This movie means the world to me. Without it, I wouldn't be the person I am today. Dean Cundey's photography. Gary Rydstrom's sound. John Williams' heavenly compositions. An all-star team at the peak of their powers. Still get full-body chills when we cut to the shot of the helicopter approaching the island.