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  • The Atomic Submarine

    The Atomic Submarine

    ★★½

    I appreciate that Criterion really committed to honouring the 1950s B-movie with this box set, and this submarine flick is very much in keeping with the ropy special effects and wooden acting that exemplifies the genre. That said, there's also a keen amateurishness to the enterprise, with the script positing a confluence of submarining and aliens from outer space that doesn't make a whole lot of sense except perhaps in the feverish mindset of 1950s America. The character interactions are…

  • Falling Inn Love

    Falling Inn Love

    ★★½

    I'm not sure I ever wondered 'whatever happened to Christina Milian' but now I know the answer: she is acting perfectly creditably as the lead in Netflix romcoms. She's no Jennifer Lopez, but she's likeable in this, which achieves exactly the quality you look for in a Netflix romcom and no more (very few achieve more; I think Always Be My Maybe is my favourite, and it took me a second viewing to warm to that one). Anyway, she wins…

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  • Urban Rashomon

    Urban Rashomon

    ★★★½

    It seems to me that a lot of photographer/director Khalik Allah's work is about the ethics of documenting poverty. In this short piece we see him capturing images of a street person called Frenchie, while the director reflects in voiceover about his borderline exploitative relationship with his subject. It's a film of beautiful images but also is very upfront about the ways in which representation is manipulation and exploitation, which is refreshing.

  • Vice

    Vice

    ★½

    In some ways, when I watch something like Vice (or indeed, writer/director Adam McKay's last film The Big Short), I think of David O. Russell's American Hustle or even the flashier Martin Scorsese of, say, Wolf of Wall Street, both of which films I broadly liked (although I'm cooling on the Russell over time). I think there's a lot of common ground, as comedic renderings of modern society in all its gaudiness and compromised politics, and perhaps there's a fine…