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  • Joy Ride

    Joy Ride

    ★★

    There really should have been a lot more *joy* in a proudly B-tier trucksploitation thriller like this, but unfortunately it seems to just go through the motions, managing to even underutilize Paul Walker of all people. Dude can't emote all that much but he at least has charisma to spare in the Fast & Furious movies - which began the same year as this - but in Joy Ride he comes across like a deer in the headlights most of the…

  • Contact

    Contact

    ★★★★

    I finally read Carl Sagan's novel last month and decided it was time to revisit the film adaptation, a movie I'd loved as a teen but hadn't seen since. I knew going in that it made some major changes to the story in order to fit its vast scope into a movie and I remembered so many of the details despite the twenty year gap since I last saw it, but I still wasn't prepared for how much it made…

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  • Promising Young Woman

    Promising Young Woman

    ★★★½

    There are a LOT of sociopolitical reasons for hating this movie, and that's totally fair given the subject matter. Concerns about the portrayal of victimhood, about the presumed faith in the justice system, about "revenge" genre assumptions and expectations, about tone, even about the very core concept as embodied by the title of the film. All of these are legitimate! The movie puts itself out there on the line and practically demands the kind of discourse that's surrounded it -…

  • The Irishman

    The Irishman

    ★★★★

    Is The Irishman a victory lap for Scorsese? A sort of thematic greatest-hits carved into a new narrative? Is it a "mea culpa" for his violent filmography, as I've seen film twitter suggest? While I can confidently say that it is not the latter, I really can't yet sum up my feelings on this sprawling historical epic of one seemingly insignificant yet consequential man's life.

    I feel like I already need to watch it again to absorb the portions where…