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  • Woman in the Dunes

    Woman in the Dunes

    ★★★★★

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    My Favorite Films, "Ranked"

    “I don't like sand. It's coarse and rough and irritating and it gets everywhere. Not like here. Here everything is soft and smooth.” - Anakin Skywalker AKA Niki Junpei

    The ultimate determinist film. Woman in Dunes not only shows us that life is a series of internments that we must come to terms with, but it also teaches us *how* we are to come to terms with them. To escape society; its overbearing institutions, its constant…

  • Eyes Wide Shut

    Eyes Wide Shut

    ★★★★★

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    Kubrick Ranked (complete)

    Finally.

    Finally a Stanley Kubrick that I adore. The man is a master filmmaker, no doubt, but as BrandonHabes has heard endlessly, I struggle to connect with his films. After a lot of deliberation and self-reflection, I’ve come to find that this disconnect ultimately boils down to personal preference. His most well-regarded works are too cold, too cerebral, and too pessimistic for yours truly. I always admire their technical mastery, and there are quite a number of…

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  • Keep Cool

    Keep Cool

    ★★★★

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    Zhang Yimou Ranked (work-in-progress)

    KEEP COOL is so fucking cool. To see Zhang Yimou's vision of urban living, what with the frenetic camerawork, casual lower-class desperation, and thick-headed laymen, is a real treat. This film is loud and unhinged, unlike any of the films that came before it. But, what does it have to say?

    I'm not entirely sure, unfortunately. With the true ending censored, KEEP COOL's intentions are left a bit unclear. What was the meaning of Xiaoshuai and…

  • Lost Highway

    Lost Highway

    ★★★½

    David Lynch Ranked (work-in-progress)

    As with many of David Lynch's films, unpacking them feels like a chore. Not that they don't have their merits or are insubstantial. It's just their themes and meanings are so obfuscated it'd take an essay to do them any justice. LOST HIGHWAY is no different, and is perhaps the most deliberately opaque film in all of Lynch's oeuvre.

    SO, I'm not even going to bother. When watching, LOST HIGHWAY meant nothing to me. But, it…

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  • Boyhood

    Boyhood

    ★★½

    Film Club Ranked

    I'm sorry. Mostly thematic spoilers ahead.

    Despite Linklater completely achieving his vision, despite a strong thematic connection to both my own life and life in general, despite being all-around well performed, BOYHOOD falls flat. And that, ultimately has to do with the formal choices of the film.

    This is a film about real life. Well, aside for the horrendously "neoliberal" moment with the Mexican youth. Dragonball Z? I had posters on my wall, too. Gameboy SP? Played…

  • Cure

    Cure

    ★★★★½

    Not a big fan of the horror genre so that the fact this was more police procedural worked wonders for me. With that said, however, this is the first time I've felt genuine terror in years. A premise that could conceivably exist in the real world is the saving grace and why this one is worth watching (to me.) Horror involving the plainly supernatural has never been my thing. CURE succeeds through its expertly crafted mood, sharp directing (love, love,…