February 2019 Viewing Log

  1. They Shall Not Grow Old (18, C-): Greatly admirable intention. Frequently moving but emotionally limited. Editing, colorized restoration, POV inconsistent. 2/1/19
  2. Destroyer (18, B): Forceful construction never fully gels with sidewinding, tragic ambitions. Still, impressive build. Whitford! 2/3/19
  3. Cold War (18, B): Most complicated, fascinating politics in first third. Songs last. Threads get lost in increasingly sporadic structure. 2/3/19
    1. No offense but this beats the entire back half of Cold War
  4. The Final Girls (15, B): Maybe more witty than smart but emotional chords, cinematography, strongest performances give it such weight. 2/7/19
  5. M (31, A): Dense, cynical construction focuses its attention in unexpected directions without playing a wrong note or betraying its nasty themes. 2/8/19
  6. Erin Brockovich (00, A-): Astonishing synthesis of character insight, political charge, and pure entertainment. Roberts a dream. 2/8/19
  7. Did You Wonder Who Fired The Gun? (18, B+/A-): Self conscious, angry POV gives way to multiple candid, measured personal and historical testimonies, painting a portrait that only gets more complicated and ugly. 2/10/19
  8. Araby (18, A): Holy fuck. 2/10/19
    1. Araby is absolutely one of my favorite movies of the year and I honestly don’t know where I wanna put it anywhere outside of my top 10
  9. Sócrates (18, D+): More amateurishly flat than messy, though those 70 minutes feel looong. Amazingly anti-climactic. 2/11/19
  10. The Lego Movie 2 (19, C+): The corporation that made Batman v Superman doesn’t get to mock gritty reboot culture. Rex gets so weird. That said? Still a pretty good time! Lots of fun, good jokes, mostly gets better as it goes. 2/13/19
  11. The Lobster (15, A-): Shapeshifts its center and ideas so excitingly, continuously adding layers to an already absurd, scary scenario. 2/14/19
    1. By far my favorite ensemble Lanthimos has ever directed. Quietly very impressive on cutting, shooting level. Gets better every time I watch it
  12. Vice (18, B): Saw it for a second time with the boyfriend yesterday. Still impressed by its gusto, even when it’s messier or nastier than it should be. Portrait of Cheney White House as infestation pretty incredible. Hope it wins where it can, though I’d only nominate its makeup. 2/15/19
    1. It’s pretty wild to me that BlacKkKlansman and Vice got left out of Sound Mixing over B*** R***. Their sonic montages are just as insinuating as their editing.
  13. The Road (09, B+): Strong filmmaking honors a weighty novel. Satisfying, if not as risky as it could be. Mortensen carries it. 2/18/19
  14. Have A Nice Day (18, C): Art style, fractured narrative structure intermittently intrigue on script and scene-by-scene levels. 2/18/19
  15. Capernaum (18, B+): I’m still mixed on some of its techniques, but by and large this is tremendously moving and expertly made. 2/21/19
  16. The Night is Short, Walk on Girl! (18, B+): Unbelievably charming, from its audiovisual delights to silly plots and characters. 2/22/19
  17. Beast (18, B+): Black sheep throws herself into morally murky territory. Psychologically rich study of her, her man, their love, and their town, all cloaked in guilt and projected narratives. 2/23/19
  18. The Silence of the Lambs (91, B+/A-): Explicit and subtextual notes in its story marry well to the baroque and chilly qualities of its direction. Hopkins, Foster ace it. 2/25/19
  19. War of the Worlds (05, C-): Blockbuster slickness with 9/11 allegory bullshit slides from kinda fascinating to fully insufferable. 2/25/19
    1. Tim Robbins is really gate crashing this already awful War of the Worlds with one of the worst performances I’ve ever seen
    2. The Morgan Freeman narrations would not sound any less nonsensical if The Amazing Criswell read them
  20. The Emperor’s New Groove (00, B+): Pretty spectacular joke ratio. Wonderfully animated and acted. Hall of fame villains. 2/26/19
    1. Been thinking a lot about great voice-over villain performances and I really hope Kathryn Hahn’s Liv/Doc Ock gets added to that canon as soon as possible
  21. The Road to El Dorado (00, C+): Leads engaging, even if two non-Spaniards playing such stands out. Weak villain, great songs. An alright time. 2/26/19
  22. Greta (19, C+): Film and Huppert best at their most dangerously bonkers, from a restaurant confrontation to a ballet ambush. 2/28/19

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