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Rod has written 322 reviews for films rated ★★★★½ .

  • Wait Until Dark

    Wait Until Dark

    ★★★★½

    My wife:  “This is my kind of film.” 

    Audrey Hepburn in this Oscar nominated performance is revelatory as a blind woman besieged by some bad dudes that try to play on her vulnerability in order to retrieve a drug-stuffed doll that has circumstantially found its way into her possession via her photographer husband. Mind games ensue, but it isn’t long before all involved realise that this woman is as smart, strong and perceptive as she is vulnerable. Alan Arkin plays…

  • The Class

    The Class

    ★★★★½

    Usually on a weeknight I would be on the nod watching a subtitled film due to tiredness, but not with this riveting and provocative film. 

    Based on the autobiography of the lead actor playing a fictionalised version of himself, we are absorbed into the melting pot of a suburban French classroom of young teens as they grapple with the complexities of their development whilst being prompted to reveal themselves by their sometimes unconventional teacher. By the end of the school…

  • if....

    if....

    ★★★★½

    An incendiary satire with shades of the surreal set in an English boarding school where a revolution is afoot, and who better to deliver such a bold statement than Lindsay Anderson, who followed this up with the sprawling capitalist allegory O Lucky Man!. Chock full of memorable scenes and show-stopping performance from Malcolm McDowell, which was his calling card to Stanley Kubrick who noticed him and cast him as the unforgettable Alex DeLarge. A wickedly subversive film that earned itself the Palme d’Or in 1969.

  • Paper Moon

    Paper Moon

    ★★★★½

    Another acclaimed classic tackled. I am always a sucker for a con-man flick and I thought this was a simply delightful work from Peter Bogdanovich, more than earning its poignant denouement. The standout feature was László Kovács‘ cinematography sporting many memorable master shots.

  • The Day the Earth Stood Still

    The Day the Earth Stood Still

    ★★★★½

    I was surprised and rather elated at the lack of cheese, contrary to my expectations. A truly classic and prestigious affair with a timeless message that stands today, whilst also reflecting the anxieties of the era it was made. So many iconic moments underscored by the always effective Bernard Herrmann. An iconic classic of cinema.

  • The Nice Guys

    The Nice Guys

    ★★★★½

    Rating upgrade for being so damn funny and cool as hell. Shane Black needs all the support he can get to continue making bad-ass flicks like this. Cult classic!

  • WHAT DID JACK DO?

    WHAT DID JACK DO?

    ★★★★½

    Lynch can monkey about any damn time and I’ll eat it up. A pleasant surprise!

  • The Irishman

    The Irishman

    ★★★★½

    A mammoth undertaking by all involved, and very much the mature and contemplative older brother to Goodfellas and Casino (as one would probably anticipate), yet not just Scorsese’s greatest hits fare, but right in the freakin’ zone man!

    Another viewing may push it to 5 star status, but it’s not quite Goodfellas, so I think it’ll still fall a tad short of that masterpiece; still it’s gotta be the best film the man has delivered in quite some time!

  • The Last of Sheila

    The Last of Sheila

    ★★★★½

    Maybe it’s the naff title or lack of availability, but this is quality whodunnit is criminally under-seen. The cast really commits to the cleverly penned Stephen Sondheim and Anthony Perkins script (based on their experience in hosting murder mystery parties), and by the finale I was edging ever-closer to the screen in anticipation of how it would all reveal itself. Thanks to Rian Johnson in highlighting this as one of the inspirations for Knives Out.

  • A Silent Voice

    A Silent Voice

    ★★★★½

    A confronting and heartfelt examination of the emotional minefield that is youth. A potent film that should be widely seen.

  • The Boys

    The Boys

    ★★★★½

    Wow, it’s been 21 years since I first saw this brooding and gritty potboiler of tension at the cinema, and it stands up remarkably both in craft and performance. It seemed like we used to make impressive suburban crime dramas like this often in Australia, but now it seems we’ve lost our way and our industry is as lifeless as roadkill on a country highway. Sad really.

  • Death Proof

    Death Proof

    ★★★★½

    The Grindhouse cut is where it’s at!

    The ‘Extended version’ (which is what we got theatrically in Australia) is unnecessarily overblown, but in this version at a tight 87 mins, Death Proof is just about as thrilling as anything I’ve ever seen.

    I’ll go and enjoy watching butterfly’s lap dance scene as a bonus feature right now tho...