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  • The Royal Tenenbaums

    The Royal Tenenbaums

    ★★★★★

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    There is an undeniable artificiality to Wes Anderson and his aesthetic. Arguably Bottle Rocket was too low budget to rise to the lavish level of precise artificiality that Anderson enjoys, but everything else certainly does.

    Yet in most of his work Anderson's artificiality is a beneficial stylistic hallmark. Andersons films create glorious, lived in doll houses full of remarkable detail and whimsy. I can't think of any director that is more masterful with the set design and shot composition elements…

  • Cabaret

    Cabaret

    ★★★★★

    I'd like to program a double feature of Cabaret and Barton Fink based on their shared themes of pitiful reactions to rising fascism.

    All of the music numbers are great. I love the decision to make it an entirely diegetic musical, keeping everything on the often surrealistic stage of the Kit Kat Club works perfectly for the film and demonstrates the creative heights you can hit without resorting to any kind of dreamy trickery. Liza is magnificent but is potentially…

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  • Mulholland Falls

    Mulholland Falls

    ★★★

    The movie equivalent of being told a long, rambling joke that isn't funny, but makes you laugh to the point of tears when you think about how stupid the punchline was. Something more competent would have settled in to cliched mediocrity, but Mulholland Falls is that special kind of incompetent that keeps things interesting.

  • The Return of the Living Dead

    The Return of the Living Dead

    ★★★½

    The way this movie just invented the cast of Maniac Mansion. Sierra, you bunch of hacks!

    I thought about Linnea Quigley again and forgot the rest of what I was going to say.

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  • Adventures in Babysitting

    Adventures in Babysitting

    ★★★½

    Ok, we need to talk about the fact that Goodfellas comes out three years later and has two of the same prominent music cues as Adventures in Babysitting (Then He Kissed Me and Gimme Shelter).

    Has a weird tone problem in that I can't tell if it's mocking outrageous suburbanite fears of the big city or genuinely think cities are depraved cesspools. The level of farce slides up and down such that it could be either. Such ambiguity does feel…

  • The Big Lebowski

    The Big Lebowski

    ★★★★★

    I'm not going to get in to a grand unified theory and dissection of Big Lebowski, because lord knows this movie is talked about enough and that the people who do the talking can get real annoying. I'll just hit on a few things I noticed this time out

    -Because it's so lauded and remembered for its wit and characters, Lebowski might be underrated as as a visually appealing movie. The Coens and cinematographer Roger Deakins are both at the…