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  • High School Caesar

    High School Caesar

    ★★★½

    John Ashley continues to full-bore embed himself within the landscape of the teenaged exploitation picture, playing a spoiled pretty boy whose JD theatrics terrorize a high school, but also prove a mask for his own insecurities. High School Caesar is pretty much par for the course as far as the JD flick goes, but what elevates it above some of the others I've seen are the holy trifecta of the execution, the soundtrack, and the John Ashley. Released by the…

  • Teenage Thunder

    Teenage Thunder

    ★★½

    Teenage Thunder is what I like to call a "huff-and-puff" melodrama. What I mean by that is that this is a film in which the drama is largely from characters verbally butting heads, but never really getting anywhere with the ultimate results being just that; huffing and puffing. It kind of suffers (and inadvertently succeeds) in same the ways the 1959 AIP racing flick Roadracers does, in that this melodrama is rather cheap, yet there is a slo-mo car wreck…

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  • The Lighthouse

    The Lighthouse

    ★★★★★

    WHAT. A. FILM./10

    My first actual theater experience of 2019 (always go to theaters late in the year, idk), and what an experience it was. Dafoe and Pattinson are impeccable in Robert Eggers's sophomore feature, The Lighthouse. The grim pastoral Dreyeresque qualities of The VVitch are melded into a maritime setting and an expressionist grandeur that recalls everything from Murnau to Laughton's Night of the Hunter. The descent into madness is so mesermizing I couldn't leave my seat. Every frame…

  • Manhunter

    Manhunter

    ★★★★★

    Instead of a fuller review, I just wanted to take a moment to speak on one key element of Manhunter that I adore: the atmosphere. From its lush analog synths to Dante Spinotti's blend of intense color & tenebrous lighting, what Michael Mann has made here is a beast of a film unlike any other. I don't think I've ever been as haunted by a film as I have with Manhunter. It gets under your skin, embracing you all the while.…