• Stromboli

    Stromboli

    ★★★★

    Resisting the masculine urge to find a random island off the Italian coast to film your lover as a tragic symbol of female liberation.

  • Gun Crazy

    Gun Crazy

    ★★★★½

    Even in the Hays code era of filmmaking, desperation sells and few films have seemed as desperately out of control as this one. Sometimes works even more here, the clear attempts to mask sexual and violent urges obviously not fooling anyone with a pair of lungs. Ridiculously inventive shot list here, never seen a film more in love with the backseats of cars.

  • The Asphalt Jungle

    The Asphalt Jungle

    ★★½

    Maybe I’m just tired of the heists or seeing gravely men named “Dix” waxing on and on about anything and everything but this did nothing for me. Apparently you had to make a heist movie that goes wrong in the 50s and 60s to be considered a “cool” and “hip” director or something.

  • Harvey

    Harvey

    ★★★

    Yep, you can definitely tell this was a play first. Surprised to hear this one a Pulitzer of all things but maybe it was a weak year or something. Not really sure what the message is here or if there even is one; gonna go with mental institutions flawed.

  • Happening

    Happening

    ★★★★

    Ladies, do you ever ride a pillow to climax in front of your besties just to stunt on em?

    Pretty compelling argument for the legalization of abortion and a highly empathetic if sometimes standard case of arthouse minimalism. Last third of this is gut wrenching in every way you’d expect.

  • Moonstruck

    Moonstruck

    ★★★

    Infidelity in New Yawk!

  • Orpheus

    Orpheus

    ★★★★★

    Zone is such a cool word, omnipotent and imposing but also alluring in a morbidly curious kind of manner. Have seen very few films as committed to visually defining “zones” like this one does, such a clear distinction between this world and the afterlife even with all the limitations of the year 1950. First time I genuinely care about mythic figures, perhaps since every character feels like a living breathing human.

  • In a Lonely Place

    In a Lonely Place

    ★★★★

    One of the definitive “I’ll never know just what is going on in your head” movies, quite literally at points with the way Ray frames faces. Felt like the Hollywood backdrop here added next to nothing to the tale, Dixon could’ve easily been an architect or a lawyer or a dog walker and the story would’ve been plenty coherent.

  • On Dangerous Ground

    On Dangerous Ground

    ★★★½

    Sucker for a setting shifted film noir, not as much for a B&W melodrama. Noir won this time around.

  • Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness

    Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness

    ★★★

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

    Sam Raimi wins by the skin of his fucking teeth, getting as much of his trademarks in as possible before being swallowed by the MCU conglomerate. Elizabeth Olsen HARD carries the entire film on her deranged back, piledriving through horrible jokes and IP recognition bullshit that’ll make you wonder how these are the movies that get $200 million thrown at them. Was leaning towards negative until Bruce Campbell turned to the camera to say “It’s over!” Praying that he and Raimi use the profits for some real horror schlock. Fuck it, bring Olsen too, have her actually rip some heads off for once.

  • Sicario

    Sicario

    ★★★★

    A naive government worker conditioned to believe that the system can be trusted spends all of her time as a passive pawn in a self perpetuating conflict that helps no one and in fact actively harms pretty much everyone involved whether they want to admit it or not. It ends in essentially the same place it began.

  • Spencer

    Spencer

    ★★★

    Sharp left turn at the end there but mostly solid otherwise. Love the liminal spaces, less so the comparison of Diana to Anne Boleyn of all people. I get the grandiosity is cool and all but that might be a hint out of proportion. Kristen Stewart has 5 better roles than this but this one has the “prestige” so it’s gonna be called her magnum opus for a while now.