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  • Hannah and Her Sisters

    Hannah and Her Sisters

    ★★★★★

    If Jesus ever came back, and saw what was going on in his name... he’d never stop throwing up. 

    This Woody Allen masterpiece is a significant film simply by virtue of the cast: Michael Caine and Diane Weist both won Oscars for supporting acting... and since there really aren’t any “lead” roles in Hannah and Her Sisters, it’s appropriate and indicative of the overall depth of this cast. Mia Farrow, Barbara Hershey and Woody himself are memorable in their roles…

  • What's Up, Doc?

    What's Up, Doc?

    ★★★★★

    You’re upside down, sir. 

    I know what you’re thinking. “This is one of this guy’s four favorite movies?  Really?

    Perhaps it is from a disproportionately high exposure to The Three Stooges or Looney Tunes when I was a kid. Or Gilligan’s Island, for that matter. I’m not sure exactly how it all manifested itself over time, and the runner-ups are far, far too numerous and hilarious to mention, but this movie is my single favorite comedy. 
    There has to be…

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  • The Last Starfighter

    The Last Starfighter

    ★★★★

    A charmer from the mid-80’s. 

    Video games — the large standalone arcade type, a Spielbergian version of a trailer park replete with a sassy granny and a sassy little kid, plus the fish-out-of-water story of a teenager (Lance Guest) saving the galaxy… they all come together in The Last Starfighter

    Directed by Nick Castle – a former actor who was actually the guy in the Michael Myers costume in the first Halloween movie – and written by a former ad exec,…

  • My Octopus Teacher

    My Octopus Teacher

    ★★★½

    It would be a solid four stars if there was no narration (or say, maybe 25% of what there is now). The visuals are definitely strong enough to exist on their own; the cinematography is stunning, particularly given that the movie spends at least 85% of its run under water. 
    The story of a South African man who rediscovers his perspective and place on this planet is noble — but it’s laid on a bit thick.

    However, the genuine connection…

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  • Apollo 11

    Apollo 11

    ★★★★★

    If time travel doesn’t exist, one can experience a fairly vivid approximation in Todd Douglas Miller’s fantastic documentary Apollo 11. Created almost entirely from archival footage, it’s an absolute joy for any fan of the space program, or sixties history in general.  

    And that footage... Miller found reel upon reel of never-before-seen footage that was shot on 65mm negatives for a never-produced NASA documentary. The celluloid is jaw-dropping in its extreme clarity; it’s as if Miller hopped into a Delorean,…

  • Avengers: Infinity War

    Avengers: Infinity War

    ★★★★½

    I’ll write a spoiler review later, but for now... this is a really fun film. Big ensemble events like this can be hard to pull off; there’s pressure to create an opportunity for each individual character to shine a bit. But Joe & Anthony Russo succeed both in making a film with lots of great standalone action and rewarding the die-hards with plenty of references to earlier Marvel outings. It’s kind of like listening to a greatest hits album from your…