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  • Puberty Blues

    Puberty Blues

    at times I wasn't quite sure what this film was trying to accomplish — a heavy-handed morality play in which the protagonist is the only character with depth, the only character who, in the end, asks questions of the world she lands in — but also an oddly quiet, loosely sketched image of a time in life in which caricature and understatement can actually coexist, with less of a feeling of error than one might expect

  • Three Colors: Blue

    Three Colors: Blue

    My only other reference point for Kieslowski's work is VÉRONIQUE, which both did & didn't prepare me for this one, which feels both a bit looser, bound less by a clairvoyant game and more by shadowy intuition, as well as a little hampered by its color gimmick and a bit more laden with portents and markers of historical significance the film's emotional landscape didn't really seem to have that much use for. Here, music isn't something that draws you into its…

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  • Straight Up

    Straight Up

    I have a kind of morbid interest in this burgeoning genre (which HAPPIEST SEASON and ADAM also fall into) of films in which homophobia is a narrative fulcrum, something without which the film wouldn't make sense, but in which actual homophobes are curiously absent, save in this case Randall Park's character, whose most homophobic act is hugging his son when it turns out he (might) have renounced the most vanilla possible iteration of a gay lifestyle, one that shares straight…