• Shadow Conspiracy

    Shadow Conspiracy


    Sort of a movie out of time. It is a political conspiracy thriller, long after the heyday of that genre. Furthermore it borrows heavily from the look of noir crime films of the 1950's (note the not inconspicuous movie marquee showing Touch of Evil).

    If we get in the way back machine to 1997, it was a simpler time. We had a sexual predatory in the White House in Bill Clinton. The economy was booming. We were a more innocent…

  • The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh

    The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh


    Not a lot to complain about here. A bear of very little brain partakes in a series of mishaps, but the characters and world around him are kind and forgiving. So he mostly passes along without a worry in the world. Things just have a way of working out for Pooh.

    The film is a loosely stitched together series of stories from the source books. All the notable characters are here, and they all have at least one segment where…

  • Three Thousand Years of Longing

    Three Thousand Years of Longing


    I think about the myth of the monkey's paw a lot. I consider myself a mostly content man. I also recognize that I have things so much easier than so many others, as a result of my skin color, mostly stable upbringing, education, and the social structures that give advantages to people like myself. All of this is to say that I fully admit to having more than many (most of you look on a global scale) but I try…

  • The Addiction

    The Addiction


    It seemed like Ferrara had a lot to say, and not much time (or probably money) to say it. Clearly the central metaphor here deals with addiction, but the question is addiction to what. He seemed to be saying that human are addicted to evil. We repeat the same atrocities time and time again without ever truly repenting. We are inescapably compelled to kill and mutilate and humiliate others. Ferrara sets the film in grad school, in the philosophy department.…

  • Game Night

    Game Night


    Had this on the watchlist forever. A lot of fun. Real smart. Surprised I didn't read or hear more comparisons to David FIncher's The Game. Maybe too obvious?

    The movie really takes time to give all the players small arcs and moments to shine. Some things are a little under baked or don't pay off as well as I'd wish. Other things surpassed my expectations.

    The "I banged a celebrity" sub plot between Lamorne Morris and Kylie Bunbury comes to…

  • Ghost in the Shell

    Ghost in the Shell


    I understand everyone's objection to Scar Jo playing The Major. I think it goes beyond white lady playing Japanese lady. Ghost in the Shell is Japanese in its DNA. The manga / anime mediums, the sci-fi relationship with technology, the cataclysmic thematics of loneliness, isolation, and what it means to be human are as inherently Japanese as Manifest Destiny, individual excellence, and unearned confidence are inherently American.

    But if they were going to cast an American well known actress, Scar…

  • The Wizard of Oz

    The Wizard of Oz


    Another family movie night and the boy decided he wanted to watch The Wizard of Oz again (almost exactly one month from when we watched it last).

    No real new observations this time through. It's worth noting that he and I are reading The Wonderful Wizard of Oz at bedtime. About two chapters a night. The other day he recited everything that has happened in the book, in perfect chronology. That made me very happy. It was unequivocal evidence that…

  • Inside Out

    Inside Out


    Family movie night, and what does my wife pick? Pixar's emotional mine field of a movie. I was going to say Pixar's "saddest" movie, but the film sort of makes a case that this could be a good thing. The complexities of emotion related to growth and maturity is the subtext made text in the film. Brilliant in some ways, a bit on the nose in others.

    The voice cast is perfect here, all the way around. Even the non-emotion…

  • The War of the Gargantuas

    The War of the Gargantuas


    Basically this is a Frankenstein "hubris of man" narrative blended with a King Kong "twas beauty killed the beast" narrative.

    The film opens with a giant octopus attacking a fishing ship during the night. The attack is interrupted by a giant green humanoid monster named Garia. He stops the octopus from attacking the ship, only because he wanted to attack the ship and eat the crew.

    The press blames these killings on a Frankenstein monster, that apparently is a carry…

  • Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania

    Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania


    It is almost impressive that a movie that has as much going on as this film does, can be as inconsequential as this film is.

    Everyone talks about Marvel having a CGI problem. Which I can understand what they mean, but it is a bit misguided. I'd say 90% of this film is computer generated, and of that 90% I'd say 80% looks fantastic. And that is just what we know or can recognize. The problems is the remainder "bad"…

  • Hackers



    We used to make things in this country...

    I was looking for an upbeat, fun, not quite mindless watch. This was a movie I had never seen, and I like mid 90's internet panic sci-fi films. So I decided to throw this on. What a journey I went through with this film.

    It opens in a WILD set up where a tiny child is being fined $45,000 in court for using a computer to crash the stock market (in 1989).…

  • Shadow of the Thin Man

    Shadow of the Thin Man


    Even as the franchise has taken a turn towards the wholesome, there is still enough suspense and adult humor to maintain a slight edge.

    This time Nick and Norah Charles are tasked with solving a double murder relating to a jockey, and a cast of shady characters in his orbit.

    My complaint continues that as the franchise moves along, Norah plays less and less of an active role in actual sleuthing. Asta might get more screen time and even more…