• Encanto

    Encanto

    ★★½

    McOndo

  • Quantum of Solace

    Quantum of Solace

    ★★★

    Such a strange missed opportunity. The grittiness of Casino Royale is amped up to 11, in this follow up that draws inspiration from, of all things, the Cochabamba Water Wars (including the CIA’s involvement in it.) The results are mixed. There’s a grisly twist on the paint murder from Goldfinger involving motor oil. There’s an almost-rape scene involving a Bolivian general/would-be dictator. The (purposefully) bland CEO villain glibly alludes to the toppling of Aristide in Haiti. The editor seems to be afraid…

  • Casino Royale

    Casino Royale

    ★★★★

    Clever without ever sacrificing cool. Intense without ever sacrificing atmosphere. Dark without ever sacrificing style, humor, and sex appeal. By far the best Bond film, somehow strikes that magic balance between the designer suits, stunning Aston Martin chases and chic European locales and the real life horrors of espionage - torture, murdered dissidents and the bartering of human lives like poker chips. Daniel Craig’s mad dog interpretation of 007 should be remembered as one of the best but Mads Mikkelson’s calculating arms dealer, Le Chiffre, is the highlight.

  • Raazi

    Raazi

    ★★★

    Not a bad little spy thriller but distractingly patriotic. Interesting to see propaganda from other countries.

  • The Blood of a Poet

    The Blood of a Poet

    ★★★★½

    Jealous of this movie’s visual creativity. Every element is just perfectly out of place.

  • Ad Astra

    Ad Astra

    ★★★½

    Dragged a bit, and didn’t hit me emotionally as hard as it should have. But, it is very beautiful. It’s nice to see a space movie with such moody lighting and blocking. I also like the pessimistic depiction of a commercialized, fruitless space travel industry.

  • The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

    The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

    ★★★★

    Really one of Fincher’s most interesting and troubling works. At first glance, a lurid detective story not unlike Se7en, but really about the internet’s newfound capability to uncover and expose those secrets - rapes, murders, the horrors of fascism - that those in power have tried to keep buried for decades. Lizbeth Salander is a fascinating character handled delicately by Fincher and Rooney, avoiding all clichés and easy answers in their characterization of her. It’s a movie that often opts…

  • The Tragedy of Macbeth

    The Tragedy of Macbeth

    ★★★★

    In this almost Spartan Macbeth, the sets and shot composition are simple but deeply satisfying, meticulous, with nothing in frame that doesn’t need to be there. It’s Shakespeare by way of Bresson. An interpretation of the play that feels genuinely fresh, the violence shocking and that eternal dialogue recited with conviction. Denzel Washington adds a hustler’s spirit to the role that feels uniquely his, a wily paranoia that’s typical of Coen protagonists. Lady Macbeth is usually a role for an…

  • Cryptozoo

    Cryptozoo

    ★★★½

    Gorgeous animation, unbridled psychedelic visual creativity. Sub-Jurassic Park “humans are evil and greedy” bullshit story.

  • Don't Look Up

    Don't Look Up

    ★★½

    A lot of my friends have been quite harsh to this movie but I was willing to give it a fair chance. Overall, it’s a pretty limp satire but not as bad as you might have heard. Despite its length it’s easy enough to sit through. There’s some laugh out loud moments and the sense of (sadly familiar) frustration and anxiety is pretty real. However, it refuses to answer quite a few basic questions. Who is this for? Who is…

  • The Matrix Revolutions

    The Matrix Revolutions

    ★★½

    It has it cool moments. I actually like that final fight in the rain, Hugo Weaving does good work here despite the Wachowski’s best efforts to turn him into a cackling supervillain. The intro with the train station purgatory is actually an interesting set-up.
    But man it just meanders like hell, and not in a fun philosophical way like the previous 2, I mean a 1/2 hour of a character we don’t care about screaming and firing a machine gun…

  • The Matrix Reloaded

    The Matrix Reloaded

    ★★★★

    Kind of a mess - with a jumbled plot and several moments so absurd I can’t understand why they weren’t cut. But God is it fascinating. The places this movie goes with the groundwork set by its predecessor are so bold and so visually stunning. A sweaty cave rave celebrating all the messy human impulses the machine antagonists want to destroy, a 1 vs 100 man brawl, a jaw dropping freeway car chase with constantly shifting rules of physics, whatever…