Gh0stman has written 139 reviews for films rated ★★★★★ during 2020.

  • Jimmy's Hall

    Jimmy's Hall

    ★★★★★

    This is not a 'cool' movie. That doesn't matter as being 'cool' is not Ken Loach. He is able to cut through all the bullshit in our societies and point out how hypocritical and restrictive our institutions can be. Filmmaking is about emotions and ideas and Loach shows us plainly and simply pure filmmaking with no empty posturing or meaningless exhibitionism, as always.

    Also, I got to see this in the movie theater when it came out. I thought that…

  • The Taking of Tiger Mountain

    The Taking of Tiger Mountain

    ★★★★★

    An incredible epic war film with some truly astonishing battles scenes. Tsui Hark is surely one of the all time greats when it comes filming action and this is a nigh-perfect showcase for his talents. I also appreciated the political themes, the finely tuned drama, and the compact but nuanced character building; all things that would likely be lacking in a Western peer film. I wish I saw this in its native 3D in a movie theater. Heroic cinema.

    Also, this has some of the strangest narrative bookends to a movie ever in my opinion. Fascinating.

  • Die Hard

    Die Hard

    ★★★★★

    The ultimate Christmas movie.

  • The Rock

    The Rock

    ★★★★★

    Legendary action film with Nic Cage and Sean Connery in their prime. With this movie, Bay pretty much announced his preeminence as the best American action movie director of his generation and I think it's just crazy how y'all take him for granted. Do you guys even like movies?

  • Hero

    Hero

    ★★★★★

    Amazing film. It's been a long time since I've seen it last and, not only does it hold up very well, it's an even greater film than I remember. It's the rare film that acknowledges that rebellion, revolution, and overthrowing a flawed, perhaps even authoritarian government will not necessarily bring about a positive change. The removal of an authority doesn't inherently mean what replaces it will better upon said authority. Oftentimes, as history will teach us, there will be many…

  • Fright Night

    Fright Night

    ★★★★★

    One of the best horror comedies out there, assembled with both good scares and good laughs. Very casually great and unconcerned with unnecessary homage or complication. The performances are solid, in particular Chris Sarandon and Roddy McDowall. Direction, top notch. I wish I watched this on Halloween. Guess I forgot.

  • Captain America: The First Avenger

    Captain America: The First Avenger

    ★★★★★

    "...the strong man who has known power all his life, may lose respect for that power, but a weak man knows the value of strength, and knows... compassion."

    It still amazes me how Marvel does it. So many of their movies could've been so bad but time and time again they manage to make their films work and then some. Out of all of their characters, Captain America was certainly amongst the trickiest. How do the filmmakers juggle his inherent…

  • Songs My Brothers Taught Me

    Songs My Brothers Taught Me

    ★★★★★

    A wistful and tragic ode to a dying community and a lost generation, Songs My Brothers Taught Me is one of the few contemporary American films that soberingly and throughly portrays the deterioration, the slow death, of a nation and of a people in minute detail. In short, a genocide. Despite the familiar coming-of-age trappings and a didactic ending, the film strikes a profound, melancholy chord that is unshakable. This is the first film I've seen by Chloe Zhao and while many have compared her to Malick, this reminded me of Zhang-ke much more. I'll have to see her next work for sure now.

  • Hero

    Hero

    ★★★★★

    Great gangster film, floridly directed and sportively acted. Part of the Chinese Bund sub-genre, Hero has the substance of an old Hollywood 30s gangster picture along with the energy of a 90s action flick. The battles are thrilling and the character drama is swift and well done; perhaps too swift as I wouldn't have minded a longer film. If this was done today, it would probably have enough material for an entire show. Apparently this is a remake of an earlier film called Boxer from Shantung, I guess I'll have to check that out.

  • The Grudge

    The Grudge

    ★★★★★

    Finally, a real horror movie. Not that bourgeois A24 cosplay stuff. It's the only one out of the American takes to understand and convey the existential, rotting psychic dread that the original Japanese classic so throughly and dismayingly wrought onto audiences. And, ever subtly, it has something strong to express regarding our country, which is decaying inside out from economic fallout due to mass privatization and large-scale institutional apathy. Everywhere you go, there seems to be people dying from illness,…

  • Ash Is Purest White

    Ash Is Purest White

    ★★★★★

    A hundred and forty minutes of watching people lives fall into the maw of time, like sand slipping through one's fingers after lifting a fistful up from a barren dune. A tragic film indeed but also one of the purest humanity. It's a truly soulful experience, filled with great beauty and acting of the highest caliber courtesy of Zhao Tao and Liao Fan. Ash is Purest White is a masterpiece and it once again affirms Jia Zhangke as one of the best filmmakers on Planet Earth. It's a must see.

  • Thunderball

    Thunderball

    ★★★★★

    RIP Sean Connery. One of the greatest actors of all time.