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  • Cold War

    Cold War

    ★★★½

    I need help. I know this was shot in 4:3 aspect ratio, but did everyone else have it not fill the screen at the cinema? Even odder is that both my husband and I felt it did fill the screen and then suddenly, didn't, with black on both sides.

    I found this deeply unfortunate because my fretting about it completely took me out of the film. This was, in large part, because the framing and cinematography were so breathtakingly good.…

  • If Beale Street Could Talk

    If Beale Street Could Talk

    ★★★★

    Barry Jenkins, in two films, has confirmed himself as a director who can discover talent and then transform them with probing close-ups which would make even the most experienced actors quiver. His two young leads truly felt in love in a way too rarely portrayed and that is enough for me to recommend it.

    There is a languid pace that feels at times a bit too laggy, but then you have fantastic one scene only acting that is positively riveting (Yes, Brian Tyree Henry, I have seen you on Broadway, in Atlanta, and two major films this year, and you are always (always!) impressive.)

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  • Phantom Thread

    Phantom Thread

    ★★★½

    This film is much like seeing an art masterpiece at a museum. I can recognize the amazing craft, the historical references, the surprising break from the known, the elegance and beauty in the work, and yet, if it doesn't engage my heart, leaves me impressed but ultimately cold.

  • The Florida Project

    The Florida Project

    ★★★★½

    Caveat: My mom was just 21 when she had me and 22 when she had my sister. She was a single parent for us from the time I was 3-14. She was on welfare until I was 7.

    I say all this because this film wrecked me. It is so non-judgmental and allows reality to breathe all the while capturing childhood in all its gritty innocence. This is an America that I am acutely aware of and which is too…