• You've Got Mail

    You've Got Mail

    ★★★★

    The aunt and brother thing… there is an unsettling darkness barely concealed under the pleasant rom-com veneer.

    Steve Zahn, the GOAT.

  • The Staircase

    The Staircase

    ★★★★½

    Fraudulently omits material facts, calling into question the filmmakers’ tacit objectivity. Doesn’t mention owls once. But, this shit remains incredibly engrossing.

  • The Staircase

    The Staircase

    ★★★

    Worthwhile when it deviates from the documentary, adding seemingly factual information that was previously omitted (though this is far outweighed by information that seems like conjecture or outright fiction) and recreating/showing alternate theories for Kathleen Peterson’s death. Missing a lot of the real-world procedural jockeying and substantive discussions that I enjoyed in the doc.

  • Top Gun: Maverick

    Top Gun: Maverick

    ★★★★

    Doesn’t have Top Gun’s fleeting beauty (the opening credits, the motorcycle riding at sunset, Maverick cradling Goose’s body in the water), but delivers everything else. Glen Powell is very good as Millennial Maverick.

    Also, features the conscious, but incurious, choice to make the U.S. the aggressor, amounting to nothing within the movie. The filmmakers have no interest in the broader ramifications of an international incident. 

    But the dogfights and Death Star trench run were sick.

  • Top Gun

    Top Gun

    ★★★½

    No geopolitical depth or point of view beyond its surface-level focus on the U.S. military, so it’s not interesting on that front — doesn’t even bother being jingoistic. Really works as an action movie; Top Gun looks great and the aerial sequences are thrilling. Only kind of works as a character study, where Mav is an egocentric, reckless prick with some family baggage, though the filmmakers can’t give much depth to Mav beyond stating his past.

    Mav remains unlikeable and immature…

  • Die Hard

    Die Hard

    ★★★★★

    McTiernan doesn’t get talked about enough. So visually distinct and a master of action storytelling

  • Blue Collar

    Blue Collar

    ★★★★★

    Good thing all of this got fixed

  • Serpico

    Serpico

    ★★★★

    They hated him for his ‘fits. 

    Evergreen themes

  • Midnight Run

    Midnight Run

    ★★★★½

    Lyonnaise potatoes

  • The Grifters

    The Grifters

    ★★★★★

    Heartwarming! Makes me want to be a con artist

  • Clue

    Clue

    ★★★

    Prefer Murder by Death (notwithstanding the racism), but this is solid

  • 48 Hrs.

    48 Hrs.

    ★★★★½

    Ganz. Billy Bear. Kehoe. Reggie. Cates.

    Sonny Landham attended UK in later life. Heard he was very opinionated in poli sci classes and would derail lectures regularly