• Crash

    Crash

    ★★★★★

    many filmmakers including cronenberg himself have explored the sticky line between sex and death and machine and flesh through genre cinema but in my mind this is the one with ambitions of reaching far past science-fiction or body horror and into what can only be described as technoporn romance. this is a movie that takes transgressive, alienating pleasure in violently shattering the rules of the road because (as is also the epiphany of its characters) only within chaos are we…

  • Throw Down

    Throw Down

    ★★★★

    the most romantic, life-affirming movie ever made about the artistry involved in grabbing another man by the arm and dislocating it by flipping him through a table. a work of making friends and pursuing dreams and having hobbies that make you happy drawn in almost pure, wordless musicality and color. incredible.

  • Haywire

    Haywire

    ★★★★

    i really like when a movie is about a character so skilled at what they do it formally opens it up to move with a playfully stylish and effortless ease, even if what that job is is the weightiest, matter-of-fact hand-to-hand operator combat of its decade. i think it was rejected on release for taking a genre so inherently exciting and emphasizing the banal savagery of it but that quality is exactly what makes it an interesting entry in the…

  • The Birds

    The Birds

    ★★★★★

    i could easily defeat these little fuckers by simply not having a bunch of a pent up internal sexual and familial chaos to prey on or be externalized in the first place.

  • Rebel Without a Cause

    Rebel Without a Cause

    ★★★★

    teen melodrama angst shot in a heightened, expressive style (the staircase dutch angle, the red hot colors, the emphasis on vastness/loneliness of everything shot in or around the observatory) that gives its raw, intimate passions an end-of-the-cosmos severity. as a result it’s a bit silly in the details but monumental in the broad strokes. it’s very easy to see why people got swept up in it, and dean.

  • The Number 23

    The Number 23

    ★★

    had a flashback to 14yo me throwing this on cause i liked jim carrey with no idea i'd be in for him trying to play a sexy detective in a duster named fingerling who thrusts his butt cheeks and murders women and spends a good portion of the film haunted by the sheer screen presence of a dog named ned. you could argue i became a man that day. schumacher and libatique have so much fun stylistically overcranking this fantasy…

  • The Conversation

    The Conversation

    ★★★★★

    trying to maintain a professional, technical distance in a craft that requires not just puncturing but shattering illusions of privacy and intimacy. a stone cold isolation and anxiety classic. “i’m not following you, i’m looking for you. big difference.” 

    [35mm]

  • Days of Thunder

    Days of Thunder

    ★★★★

    talked about in full alongside Top Gun (1986) on episode 225 of my genre and exploitation film podcast SLEAZOIDS with special guest JT white, you can listen to the episode for free on soundcloud by clicking here.

    you can also listen to this episode (and all previous free episodes) over on itunes or spotify.

  • Top Gun

    Top Gun

    ★★★★

    talked about in full alongside Days of Thunder (1990) on episode 225 of my genre and exploitation film podcast SLEAZOIDS with special guest JT white, you can listen to the episode for free on soundcloud by clicking here.

    you can also listen to this episode (and all previous free episodes) over on itunes or spotify.

  • Inland Empire

    Inland Empire

    ★★★★★

    so glad i got to see this in a theater with a packed crowd. felt like collectively being beamed transmissions from a stream-of-conciousness purgatory we all just temporarily lived in. so much weird, nervous laughter and for whatever reason a family sat right in front of us: the two kids walked out after an hour, the parents after two. still impressed with how little this offers up in terms of narrative explanation (even for lynch) and simply trusts you to intuit…

  • Risky Business

    Risky Business

    ★★★★

    i used to think that how gorgeous and fun and sexy this was undermined or contradicted its satirical ideas (even though there are still obviously pointed moments in it like that detail of tom throwing the homeless man off the subway car) but in actuality it's just being more honest about the surface pleasure and appeal that have been intentionally built into capitalism. it's an 80s mtv coming-of-age teen sex comedy with imagery so lyrical and a soundscape so lush…

  • You, the Living

    You, the Living

    ★★★★

    still not sure i'm convinced of the depth of his critique/commentary but i'd be lying if i said i was anything less than utterly hypnotized by andersson's skill for constructing comically exaggerated tableaus of everyday individual disappointment, pain and humiliation as a means of exploring the deadpan humor of them as well as the larger, more absurd ways we’ve organized ourselves socially, economically, politically that have brought about this punishment and destruction. the way he achieves that through immaculate, painterly…