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  • The Magdalene Sisters

    The Magdalene Sisters

    ★★★★★

    Nurse Ratchet, as portrayed by Louise Fletcher, in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, is often cited by film critics as one of cinema’s great female villains. I recently watched that film and I must say that Nurse Ratchet is nothing compared to Sister Bridgett, the cold, sadistic Mother Superior in Peter Mullan’s The Magdalene Sisters, a scathing film about the Roman Catholic Church’s hypocrisy, corruption, and cruelty.

    In 20th century Ireland, the Church established various “laundries” across the country…

  • Rivers and Tides

    Rivers and Tides

    ★★★★★

    Watching this fascinating portrait of artist Andy Goldsworthy is a Zen-like experience. It is a comforting, relaxing film with a beautiful, soothing soundtrack. It is not only a celebration of the artist’s work, but of nature in general: water, landscapes, color, stones, life. It’s one of the most gorgeous films I’ve seen; it makes you appreciate how beautiful our world is and how rewarding it is to experience its wonders.

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  • Taekwondo

    Taekwondo

    ★★★★

    Argentinian director Marco Berger’s shtick is men: specifically, the beauty of the male form and repressed sexual desire between men. His films are a celebration of masculinity and he is an expert at framing men’s bodies with his camera. His shots adoringly explore men’s legs, feet, arms, armpits, buttocks, and crotches. And the actors he chooses for his films have a natural, real beauty about them – not a false, porn star, circuit queen just-out-of-the-gym look. His films are cerebral…

  • The Martian

    The Martian

    ★★

    I suppose for space nerds this film is a wet dream. But for the rest of humanity it’s a tedious and exasperating experience. I found Matt Damon’s character to be terribly uninteresting and unlikeable. Actually, I wanted everyone in this film to explode.