nocturnalduck has written 11 reviews for films rated ★★★ .

  • BlacKkKlansman

    BlacKkKlansman

    this strains painfully hard to be timely in a way that restricts its ability to really say much meaningful, but in a way this sensibility itself says a lot about the flat aestheticization of contemporary politics.

  • Inside Man

    Inside Man

    a hearty movie.

  • The Dead Don't Die

    The Dead Don't Die

    "but then it ends badly, right?"
    "uh, yeah."

  • La Notte

    La Notte

    a normal day. you get up and see shit and do shit and then go to bed. i spent most of it zoning out in a good way. the only problem is that the ending breaks the matter-of-fact mode into presenting something that's pretty common and normal as a tragedy. all of life flattens into a monotonous routine over time. you just accept the limitations that being yourself creates and continue to get up everyday with what you have. it's fine. i think antonioni understands this, but he gets too caught up into commentary mode at this stage of his career.

  • The Sheltering Sky

    The Sheltering Sky

    the problem with this is that bertolucci is sort of a blockhead, which is pretty endearing when paired with a propulsiveness of form and narrative, and less so within slow and ponderous thematic work. one of those odd documents in an auteur's work which is more vital insofar as it indicates their broader worldview than as a work of artistic merit itself. this joins the master canon of great soothing work to put on as background material or to sleep to though.

  • The Master

    The Master

    a movie making me sleepy isn't the worst reaction art can elicit.

  • Love Unto Death

    Love Unto Death

    agape perseveres on the ground while eros perseveres in the ground. death as the only escape from the temporality of life. for some this might play as amazing, but resnais's coldness combined with my inability to mentally sync with any kind of hollow romantic histrionicism causes much of the impact to be lost on me. this does try to situate the main character's perspective on the meaning of her "frivolous" eros with simon as purely subjective, but it's pretty clear…

  • Election

    Election

    the only good dark heart of american suburbia movie because it understands how deeply boring and empty that "underbelly" is.

  • Zabriskie Point

    Zabriskie Point

    antonioni's eye for spatial geometry and the ways it intersects with systems of power and oppression slightly outweighed his complete ineptness at dramaturgy for me in this one.

  • The Social Network

    The Social Network

    content getting subsumed by form

  • Ugetsu

    Ugetsu

    creates this unique tone that really does get under your skin while illustrating both the allure and the horror inherent to its deluded male psyches but also is pretty rudimentary in terms of the commentary it presents about them. which would be fine if the movie understood its strengths better, but mizoguchi tries to get way too neoacademic here in spots when this is far more interesting when it just emits gnarly vibes and lets the viewer fill in the rest. still gets points for how powerful some of the images it creates are though.