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  • La Pointe-Courte

    La Pointe-Courte

    There are a lot of film-makers I love for their work. Agnes Varda, who died a few days ago, is one. She is also one of very few whom I love for her personality, for her self, for the way she lived her life — all of which shine through in her work. She inspires me to be more curious about people, and compassionate. I admire her so much. I was very moved by her death.

    I've been wanting to…

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  • Oldboy

    Oldboy

    The explosive, iconic movie from one of the most bravura, trailblazing film makers of our time. It isn't perfect, but the opening act probably is. This is where our hero, Oh Dae-su (Choi Min-sik) finds himself incarcerated in a flat for 15 years and then released without explanation. It's an intriguing premise, there's nice voice-over, there's non-chronological editing showing him as a hilarious drunken mess just before his capture, his evolution over 15 years from pathetic to hard-boiled, and his…

  • Babylon

    Babylon

    A gritty, low-budget film starring Brinsley Forde out of Aswad, set among the West Indian people of Brixton (London is wonderfully realised and vivid here). We follow a group of lads trying to run a sound, with much squabbling amongst themselves. They're not particularly pleasant characters, few around here are, but we come to love them after a fashion as we share in their setbacks. Life in the community is hard, racism is pervasive, violence and police brutality are part…

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  • High-Rise

    High-Rise

    ★★★★★

    Another near-masterpiece from Wheatley, perhaps my favourite UK filmmaker working today, and another entry in the subgenre of dystopic tower block fantasies along with Shivers, Dredd, The Raid, and (I guess) The Towering Inferno. It's an inherently dramatic setting: the tower's monstrous size, the claustrophobic spaces within, the vertical structure providing an obvious metaphor for society or the Freudian psyche. In this one, our hero and the architect also explicitly discuss the block as a metaphor for the body -…

  • The Favourite

    The Favourite

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

    Lanthimos abandons the weird wave which may be played out by now anyway and gives us something where people talk like people normally talk in movies, and it is wonderful. Visually intricate and jewel-like, musically rich and sweeping, it almost overpowers using nothing more or less than three women playing power games and some ravishingly-designed interiors, shot through a super-wide-angle lens, which come across more Kubrick than Kubrick.

    The Favourite is a period comedy, a good one, with anachronisms, killer…