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  • Newsies

    Newsies

    ★★★★★

    Yay, they did it! The laboring children stuck together and stood up for themselves; now they can go back to paying their usual rate for the newspapers, rather than that increased rate. Justice! Just look how happy these kids are at the end.

    A lotta child actors in this one. I wonder how much they got paid?

  • High School Musical

    High School Musical

    ★★★★★

    Musicals offer freedom. Mostly, freedom from reality - a place of escape. Rejecting 'realistic' depiction, musicals instead opt to hyperbolize and highlight certain elements of reality, reflecting the emotional outlook/journey of it's characters. These characters generally play the role of stereotypical representation, reminding the audience of themselves and their aquaintances, and more importanly their interconnecting roles in the world around them. The clearly artificial nature of the musical allows for a particualr kind of distancing that benefits this real-world reflection.…

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  • Cats

    Cats

    ★★★★★

    Rating systems are a joke, and movies like Cats prove why. Just look at some of the most popular low-rated reviews: 

    a 1-star review: "it was maybe the best moviegoing experience of my life, and I will never forget it."

    another 1-star review: "a contemportary classic in double-quick time"

    a 1/2-star review: "the most fun I've had in my entire life"

    At least the truth is in the writing (I'm sure plenty of people are going into this looking for…

  • The Pest

    The Pest

    ★★★★★

    I've never seen The Pest in full, but I return to it's opening sequence all of the time. A powerful entity, it is, evoking such strong and strange feelings. Even beyond the racial caricatures or "problematic" nature, there's such a level of "cringe" to this that it's freeing, empowering. Every new identity we see John playing in the shower, each only seconds long, creates such intense embarrassment - for John Leguizamo, for us the viewer, for the culture that spawned…