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  • Star Trek: The Motion Picture

    Star Trek: The Motion Picture

    ★★★

    yes, it’s incredibly slow, there’s barely a plot and what little there is rests on your familiarity with the characters. but this is a beautiful movie to look at and i think that if you can vibe with its mood then you’re in for a treat. best enjoyed with substances.

  • The United States vs. Billie Holiday

    The United States vs. Billie Holiday

    ★½

    Andra Day’s genuinely amazing performance as Billie Holiday cannot save this film from Lee Daniels’ rote and pedestrian filmmaking. With the exception of a single scene, this movie has all the tropes of a biopic and none of the pleasures, from a ridiculous, on-the-nose script (my favorite is an FBI agent saying “They say her song is the curtain call for the so-called ‘civil rights movement’”) to narrative that moves us from plot point to plot point without any attempt to connect them Holiday’s life and experiences. 

    Billie Holiday deserves a better movie, and Andra Day deserves a better showcase for her talent.

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  • Hamilton

    Hamilton

    ★★★★

    I don’t think I have anything original to say about HAMILTON as musical theater. It’s a real achievement! Fun, exciting, innovative and, at points, genuinely moving. 

    I do have a few thoughts on HAMILTON as a historical narrative and as an ideological project, and I’ll use my review to think out loud on both subjects.

    The HAMILTON narrative depends on stripping the American founding of much of its context. The only way to present the titular hero as a striving…

  • Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

    Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

    ★★

    It is undeniable that THE RISE OF SKYWALKER is a reaction to THE LAST JEDI and an attempt to satisfy a vocal cadre of fans who rejected the previous movie for its attempt to subvert the tropes of a Star Wars film.

    Unhappy that the principal cast was separated for most of TLJ? Well, TRoS keeps them all together for most of its runtime.

    Unhappy with Rian Johnson’s clear contempt for bloodlines and familial legacies? Well, TRoS makes clear that…