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  • RoboCop

    RoboCop

    ★★★★★

    This movie is violent, vulgar and schlocky. Our protaganist, played by a Peter Weller, is introduced and killed within 20 minutes, graphically blown apart by a criminal gang. One character, near the end of the film, is maimed by toxic waste and killed when a car hits him and he explodes. But this isn't gratuitous violence; it exists in dialogue with story and theme. Robocop takes place in a future Detroit where crime is out of control and the police…

  • RoboCop

    RoboCop

    ★★

    Me, imagining the people who wrote this movie:

    “Let’s take a brilliant, biting satire, drain it of everything that makes it interesting, tone down the violence to sub-PG-13 levels, and stuff it with every blockbuster cliche we can find.”

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  • Hamilton

    Hamilton

    ★★★★

    I don’t think I have anything original to say about HAMILTON as musical theater. It’s a real achievement! Fun, exciting, innovative and, at points, genuinely moving. 

    I do have a few thoughts on HAMILTON as a historical narrative and as an ideological project, and I’ll use my review to think out loud on both subjects.

    The HAMILTON narrative depends on stripping the American founding of much of its context. The only way to present the titular hero as a striving…

  • Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

    Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

    ★★

    It is undeniable that THE RISE OF SKYWALKER is a reaction to THE LAST JEDI and an attempt to satisfy a vocal cadre of fans who rejected the previous movie for its attempt to subvert the tropes of a Star Wars film.

    Unhappy that the principal cast was separated for most of TLJ? Well, TRoS keeps them all together for most of its runtime.

    Unhappy with Rian Johnson’s clear contempt for bloodlines and familial legacies? Well, TRoS makes clear that…