Otie has written 35 reviews for films during 2021.

  • Holler

    Holler

    ★★★½

    With the color palette of Guston's Blue Water, of Rosetta and Wanda, the red shutters on chipped blue stucco of Made in U.S.A., this picture – the film people thought Winter's Bone was – reminds its viewers of the worst tendencies of American independent film fest poverty porn by just barely avoiding them, lending Music Row detail to a rust belt narrative that's trite at large – like New York Times reporting on how the other half lives – but…

  • $5.15/Hr.

    $5.15/Hr.

    ★★

    Support. the. Girls.

  • Six in Paris

    Six in Paris

    ★★★½

    Something like an étude, a study in location and neighborhood, putting documentary means to fictional ends. Credit to Barbet Schroeder as producer/auteur.

    Rohmer's and Chabrol's shorts – dark comedies of the bourgeoisie – have the most narrative sophistication; Pollet's struck me as a trifle but that may be the point; while Jean Rouch's Gare du Nord impresses most of all, with its bravura single take.

    Godard's is a story told by Belmondo in Une femme est une femme, from Giraudoux;…

  • Days of Being Wild

    Days of Being Wild

    ★★★★½

    The sheer bravura whatever-does-it-mean un-necessity of the Tony Leung coda, this enigma appearing from nowhere to smoke as soft as possible in a room too short by half… I watch this movie again and again and only remember–more than the famous minute–the two seconds on the roof. In my head it's Wong's on-the-roof-in-the-Phillipines movie, when in fact it's Maggie Cheung and Andy Lau, Welles and Godard, her heels in an alley, his back to the telephone booth. At night the streets.

  • Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil

    Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil

    ★★★

    Doesn't even touch upon what a force Jim Williams was for good in Savannah, preserving – sometimes with his bare hands – entire swaths of the historic district, which would – not might – have otherwise been desecrated, like the entire United States, by a sea of parking lots, nor does it bother to mention that the prosecution acted with extreme prejudice to avenge the city's spoiled carpark dreams, or that homophobic Savannah juries convicted Williams three times before the acquittal…

  • Duelle

    Duelle

    ★★★★

    If other movies depict mystery, Duelle embodies it, inventing the Lynchian by standing actors and crew in a room like they're an enigma in a riddle. What could be more fantastic or uncanny than the ordinary, Juliet Berto unfurling incantations with her decisive hands. Rivette revisits the baffling locations of film noir, an aquarium, a botanical garden, a locker room, while women play dress up as an essential part of battling for their place in the world. Endlessly associative and open, making – like Anger's Puce Moment – the past, future, and present one.

  • Mr. Jealousy

    Mr. Jealousy

    ★★★

    Typically for early Baumbach, all the parts that aren't the movie are terrific; the less audible the dialogue, the funnier it is; the more irrelevant the side characters, the better they are. If this had 30 minutes of Carlos Jacott and John Lehr squabbling in a diner, instead of four, it'd be a five-star Gesamtkunstwerk. They can't all be Conrad & Butler Take a Vacation, sadly.

  • My Neighbors the Yamadas

    My Neighbors the Yamadas

    ★★★½

    Blessed with perfect vibes, and theme music by Akiko Yano that's almost as charming as Vince Guaraldi's, Yamadas faithfully adapts a Sunday comic strip in the style of golden age sitcoms. It's long, lived-in, and understated. If the idea of adapting a funny paper into a movie one four-panel sequence at a time, without a story or anything but Basho haikus to hold it together, seems cursed, the mundane blissful flawlessness of the source material, a Peanuts for the everyday, makes up for it, finding tiny morals in life's foolishness, not to scold but to celebrate–with a whistle and a wah-wah–the perfectly average.

  • Shiva Baby

    Shiva Baby

    ★★★

    Aesthetically kind of heinous, at least when its anamorphic handheld cinematography recalls Krisha more than Fleabag, Seligmann aims for a horror-comedy in which the audience has deep empathy for its protagonist, trying for a microbudget Uncut Gems-style panic attack thrill ride but make it claustrophobic and chaotic bisexual, and if she falls short, which she does, and the life that was present in the short is partly sucked out by the feature's visual ambitions and need to stretch out, then,…

  • Modern Romance
  • The World in His Arms

    The World in His Arms

    ★★★★½

    That Boston man, he come like hurricane, out of Salem by way of San Francisco, bound for Sitka on the Pilgrim of the Sea. The wind is fair and we don't wait, because he has to meet a woman. Any woman. The world's a stage when a lady's present—and every man's a gambler. (Otherwise they would never marry). Go inside, grab yourself a drink, get into the fight.

    The fun in having it all is acting like you can't lose;…

  • Please, Please Me!

    Please, Please Me!

    ★★★½

    Mouret at his most slapstick. For anyone that loves Jerry Lewis.