• My Night at Maud's

    My Night at Maud's

    ★★★★½

    A startlingly cinematic Rohmer; this film is visually dynamic in a way I can't remember from any of his films in colour. Trintigant's pursuit of his blonde dream girl is as close to Hitchcock as I've ever seen Rohmer get, and yet this film might also be the talkiest of his I've seen, in which his people are allowed to expound their views and self-narratives at greatest length – the French are always making grand declarative statements, it must be…

  • Malignant

    Malignant

    ★★★½

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    Watched this off the back of seeing an hour of Aquaman on tv and immediately wanting to accept James Wan as my Lord and personal Sam Raimi. The last 30 minutes of this movie do, indeed, go sicko mode; the rest of it feels like the badly-paced pilot of a Netflix original soap opera, which is a funny vibe to begin with but quickly becomes a slog. Neo-Giallo? Maybe, I don't know. It's sure for perverts only – a women's…

  • Computer Chess

    Computer Chess

    ★★★★

    Fairly rare that the founder of a movement is the same person to bring it to its most creative, out-there application. Undergrad-y presentation of some ideas aside - the Q&A climax, in particular, quite literally spells out themes that are otherwise achieved through perfect innuendo - this is a brilliant application of a lowercase genre to profound philosophical ends.

    I guess people read this as a film about machines gaining power over humans? I see it as a film about…

  • The Devil, Probably

    The Devil, Probably

    ★★★★

    I ate a very big meal that made me feel very sleepy before watching this, so I didn't get much out of it apart from it's about the most beautiful and most annoying little twink that ever lived

  • The Thin Man

    The Thin Man

    ★★★★½

    watched as part of my wednesday film club. pre-coders are one of my favorite breeds of movie to watch, and this is a *very* pre-code fusion of screwball and mystery, to wonderful result. the chemistry between loy and powell is so lived-in and developed, you'd think you were watching the eleventh film of a franchise; everything between them is delight, particularly the playful moue they can apparently even trade over a telephone line. this is such a hang-out movie that…

  • The Marriage of Maria Braun

    The Marriage of Maria Braun

    ★★★½

    watched at my desk after a saturday dinner. i can't say i think this'll ever be a favorite fassbinder of mine, but it did drive home for me the incredible range of his thematic concerns in the course of his career. the first of his three collaborations with the screenwriters marthesheimer and frohlich, this is a pitch-dark sociological satire that dramatizes the dark heart of germany's postwar 'economic miracle'.

    hanna schygulla's performance as the titular character - a woman who…

  • The Heartbreak Kid

    The Heartbreak Kid

    ★★★★½

    excellent. pecan pie scene is one of the funniest and darkest comic setpieces of all time - the decision to stage it as an endless waffling monologue by grodin is perfect. like almost everything else he says in the film, he's not communicating so much as he's trying to ward off the possibility of becoming sincere, trying to keep himself clean of berlin's pain with a sustained stream of words. "what are these sounds? c'mon..." when the waiter asks if he wants whipped cream, he does like twelve different things in three seconds. not my favorite elaine may, but probably her closest to formal perfection.

  • Venom

    Venom

    ★★★★½

    the greatest superhero film of the early-to-mid-2000s; a throwback to when superhero protags were just kind of dumb everymen who wanted their ex-girlfriends back and uhhh listened to the Black Keys. cannot overstate the bizarreness and beauty of tom hardy's performance, in which he appears to be doing an impression of adam sandler in Big Daddy if he was possessed by demons. michelle williams doing jennifer aniston, blinking a lot, hilariously wasted on this film. i can't believe people don't love this.

  • Face/Off

    Face/Off

    ★★★★★

    this is dialectics. straub & huillet who

  • High School

    High School

    ★★★★★

    "Please don't say anything to Mrs. C. She would only worry over me. I am not worth it. I am only a body doing a job."