Favorite films

  • L.A. Story
  • Sex, Lies, and Videotape
  • Wild at Heart

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  • Lost Highway

    ★★★½

  • Ashes and Diamonds

    ★★★★½

  • Moloch

    ★★★

  • Brain Damage

    ★★★★

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  • Sex, Lies, and Videotape

    Sex, Lies, and Videotape

    ★★★★★

    You've had an effect on my life.

    We are just children when it comes to love and lust. These things (which I think are the same) revert us to the helpless, dependent state of infancy. Sappho said that love was γλυκυπικρον, sweetbitter: γλυκυ which gives us "glucose", raw energy, and πικρον, recalling "piquant" or the pica, the sting or bite of the picador: picking, unpicking; biting, the biter bit. In the same fragment, she calls Love a "loosener of limbs".…

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  • Lost Highway

    Lost Highway

    ★★★½

    We have to go to the desert, baby.

    Bill Pullman, can that name be real? The bill for the Pullman, the ticket to ride in luxury, and also Pill Bullman, the medicated Minotaur, and Pull Bill-man, the scourge of flyposters. I don't know; sounds like too many men to me.

    Bill Pullman is the prototypical confused Lynchian everyman, a vacant compartment on a train to psychic oblivion. The only time he breaks out is when he's having wild, uninhibited sax.…

  • Ashes and Diamonds

    Ashes and Diamonds

    ★★★★½

    Opening with a lethal case of mistaken identity, Ashes and Diamonds proceeds to hang out at the bar, and the noir, getting steadily more soused on its own cordite and vodka fumes until the air of moral ambiguity is so sharp you could cut the Polish national identity in two with it, and the film does exactly that. The question is, after five years of devastation and Nazi hell and near-futile resistance, how much fight can you summon to explain…

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  • Tampopo

    Tampopo

    ★★★★★

    Food is life. A spaghetti-eating lesson is subverted by a balding, belching Westerner. A troupe of hobo gourmets trade tasting notes and whip up omelettes in hotel kitchens after hours. A mad granny palps peaches and cheese, pursued by a store clerk. Food is sex. A gangster who resembles a young Chairman Kaga from Iron Chef understands the aphrodisiacal powers of raw eggs and oysters. Food is death. A dying wife wills herself to cook one last meal for her…

  • Withnail & I

    Withnail & I

    ★★★★★

    Ah, Withnail. Like most of my peers, I watched this too many times to count between the ages of 18 and 21, but without ever really appreciating the currents of desperation and despair that flow through the film, or just how poignant their consummation is. It was always on in the background when you went round to someone's place, and what emerged through the fug of inebriation were the endless quotable lines, Richard E. Grant's manic shrieking, Uncle Monty's bombast,…