DoctorDoom has written 123 reviews for films during 2017.

  • Disobedience

    Disobedience

    He should have ended on that shot.
    That was what I was telling myself over and over after leaving the theatre. He should have ended on that shot. The one that was the perfect visual culmination of everything the film was trying to say. He should have ended on that shot. But then it kept going for five more minutes.

    As a queer romance drama, Disobedience is not exactly breaking new ground in the same way that recent successes such…

  • The Transformers: The Movie

    The Transformers: The Movie

    Today, there are countless versions of Transformers. From a myriad of cartoons, a plethora of comics and even the rather unfortunate live-action film series, Transformers, more than any other 80s narrative-for-toyline property, is a cultural touchstone. But why? What was so special about Optimus Prime, Megatron, and these robots in disguise? What did they have that the competition didn't?
    They had Transformers: The Movie.

    Now, plenty of similar toylines had films, but none of them have the same staying power…

  • Casque

    Casque

    "Reality is nothing and nothing is real . . . ."
    Mary Elizabeth Winstead is probably the most underappreciated actor of her generation. Melding disarming charisma, empathetic expression and naturalistic physicality into a unique screen presence, she always makes whatever character she's been given feel both heightened and humanistic.

    Although she got her start in soap operas and television films like The Long Road Home as a teenager, Winstead truly broke out courtesy of Disney, playing supervillain Gwen Grayson in…

  • The Meddler

    The Meddler

    I lost my dad last year. Unlike many stories of parental loss, it wasn't drawn out; he was only in his forties, he was healthy and successful, and I woke up that morning with no indication that anything was wrong. Then I got a call that his car had been hit by a truck on his way to work.

    I don't remember the last words I said to my father. I suspect that's probably because there was no build-up, no…

  • Pacific Rim

    Pacific Rim

    The world doesn't appreciate Pacific Rim enough. For its fans, that's obvious. For its critics, that's slander. Yet even among those disparate camps, I believe there's some misconception about just what kind of movie Guillermo del Toro made here.
    Pacific Rim is the story of our time.

    To understand why, you have to be willing to go with del Toro's core idea: he made a live-action anime, and he did it deliberately. Not ironically, not as an homage, and not…

  • The Silence of the Lambs

    The Silence of the Lambs

    ★★★★★

    The Silence of the Lambs is the only horror film to win the Academy Award for Best Picture, and it cannot be understated how monumental of an achievement that is in the face of an institution that so commonly treats genre fare as substandard material.

    The cultural impact of Jonathan Demme's masterpiece has largely been cultivated by Anthony Hopkins and his portrayal of iconic villain Hannibal Lecter, who technically isn't even the principal antagonist of the story. In functional terms,…

  • The Neon Demon

    The Neon Demon

    Everyone has dreams. Artists strive to create art that will be remembered after they're gone. Scientists work to better society and further our collective knowledge. People hope they'll accomplish something that justifies their existence.
    Models pray they're beautiful enough to edge out the competition.

    I have no doubt that Nicolas Winding Refn sought to make a grand thematic statement with The Neon Demon. Known for cultivating an image of being the cutting edge of cinema (and with the cult following…

  • Ingrid Goes West

    Ingrid Goes West

    At the beginning of Ingrid Goes West, the eponymous character is portrayed as an obsessively delusional psychopath. By the end, she's someone you may just be rooting for, depending on your point of view.

    Perspective is important to all films, but it's particularly crucial for Matt Spicer's directorial debut. Even the credits provide perspective, with the film feeling heavily guided by its main star Aubrey Plaza, given that she produced it and that it seems tailor-made to prove that yes,…

  • Marie Antoinette

    Marie Antoinette

    Widely criticized for liberal use of anachronistic affectation upon its original release, Marie Antoinette is one of Sofia Coppola's slipperiest films, carving out its own niche within her filmography as "the one that got away" from the audience, only to be rediscovered over time as a fine achievement in its own right.

    Perhaps that's appropriate given the film's principal subject, whom Coppola is similarly attempting to rehabilitate. Instead of miring her film with the historical context or controversy surrounding the…

  • The Stepford Wives

    The Stepford Wives

    Remember when I said remakes shouldn't deserve contempt just for existing? I still stand by that. However, when a remake completely betrays the point of the original while also being one of the most ill-conceived films in decades, I definitely feel that it should never have existed in the first place.

    The obvious question is: what is this movie trying to be, and by extension, who is it for? It's not trying to be the original Stepford Wives, because it…

  • Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

    Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

    ★★★★★

    If movies are ultimately about their creators seeking a personal truth, then Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is one of the greatest films ever made. Few films can truly claim to capture the essence of an entire generation, but Scott Pilgrim is one of them.

    Far more than a breezy romantic comedy or just another comic book adaptation (although it succeeds at being both of those in the best ways possible), Scott Pilgrim is Edgar Wright's treatise on 21st century…

  • Event Horizon

    Event Horizon

    Before Paul W. S. Anderson become solely focused on corporate shlock (and before he inexplicably became the adored subject of "auteur" revisionists with a serious case of myopia), he did manage to create one interesting original film: Event Horizon.

    Released to terrible reviews and poor box office reception back in 1997, Event Horizon has been vindicated by history as a classic case of artistic ambition exceeding the grasp of pragmatic execution. Creating a lived in science-fiction world brimming with tension…