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  • Dragon Lord

    Dragon Lord

    ★★★★

    “That was a real fight, not kung fu training” - Jackie Chan in DRAGON LORD explaining to his sidekick Mars why he’s not moving the way everyone expects him to.

    DRAGON LORD is the shunned older child of Jackie’s work as a director, and it isn’t difficult to see why: It’s got almost no fight scenes and the ones that pop up are sloppy and lacking in the comedic cleverness that Jackie would make his trademark.

    And that’s why I…

  • Story of a Love Affair

    Story of a Love Affair

    ★★★

    Antonioni’s first fictional feature is a dry-run through all the ideas he’d tackle in his golden period: Rich people being sad, the fragility of an emotional relationship, and the nature of a reality that changes when you look at it. The big difference is that the angst that the rich couple go through in this one is anchored in something they did - watch a friend die so they could finally get together. The concrete nature of the pain makes…

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  • Assassination Nation

    Assassination Nation

    ★½

    The film starts with a TRIGGER WARNINGS joke. Oof.

    Politically all over the place and tonally repugnant. The film is about the horrors of mob violence and it goosed our audience to scream "KILL! KILL! KILL!" at one point.

    I'm a white dude, so it's not really my place to say this, but it kinda felt uncomfortable watching another white dude make a film about the complexities of being a young woman that revels in mentally and physically abusing them until it switches into a heavy-handed "ISN'T THIS VIOLENCE KEWL!?" finale.

  • Mank

    Mank

    ★★½

    "I stay married to you Mank because it's never boring."

    ME, WATCHING MOVIE: That is not true.

    Images that look like you flipped your iPhone to black and white. A story with no dramatic meat. Performances that range from subdued to kind of bored. I understand David Fincher made this film to honour a script his father wrote, but honestly, it probably needed a few more drafts. I genuinely thought "Boy, I'd rather be watching RKO 281, the TV movie about the making-of CITIZEN KANE, or HAIL CEASAR, or ME AND ORSON WELLES, or even frigging TRUMBO.