Mank ★★½

Here, where a dump rake is beautiful but the human face looks like particleboard, is a movie about a wit – not a hack but not an artist – which, because it misunderstands its protagonist and is based on discredited sources, draws most of the wrong conclusions, and obliges capable actors to entomb meaningless perfection in a talky defense of the sort of capable work that contributed to but did not account for great art in Hollywood.

What a weird idea, to wait twenty years to shoot a movie because you insist on black & white, only to release it direct to streaming, where it will buffer on someone's laptop while a cat steps on the keyboard, and in gimmicky HDR. Exploring a new technology by including every last desk lamp and light source in the shot was more interesting when David Lynch did it, but I did enjoy the dump rake, the dynamic range in a piece of wood, and those f/64 ranch exteriors.

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