Dylan has written 152 reviews for films during 2021.

  • The Treasure of the Sierra Madre

    The Treasure of the Sierra Madre

    ★★★★

    Pleasantly surprised that this was a lot less tomb raidy and more “how the fuck are we supposed to survive under the thumb of capitalism”. It doesn’t need to indulge in the occasional chase or overblown set piece, just these actors and a keen eye for composition is enough to keep the thrills alive. The spirit of adventure flows through the fireside chats and ensuing paranoia of these three vagabonds, constantly keeping the vast vistas of the Sierra Madre an itchy…

  • Dark Star

    Dark Star

    ★★★

    I’m continually impressed by Carpenter’s ability to create and sustain atmosphere using only a synthesizer, especially here when most of the sets appear to be held together primarily by the union of duct tape and sweat. Doesn’t exactly justify itself out of being just a feature length preview of coming attractions from fresh faced director John Carpenter and future Alien scribe Dan O’Bannon, constantly sputtering from hijink to hijink without a goal or clear purpose in mind. Its a lot of…

  • Test Pattern

    Test Pattern

    ★★★★

    Takes heavy subject matter that would absolutely sink a first time filmmaker and gracefully spins it out into nuanced and often infuriating examinations of relationships, male fragility, the failings of modern healthcare, and the complex difficulty of processing trauma. Watch Shatara Michelle Ford’s career closely.

  • Happy Death Day 2U

    Happy Death Day 2U

    ★★★½

    Both a blessing and a curse that this leans so heavily into the theoretical quantum mechanics vaguely implied by time looping. Feels more like a milder riff on high school/college teen comedies that at its best recalls the morbid ingenuity of Better Off Dead and at its worst the zany antics of Real Genius (which isn’t a very bad rock bottom at all), at the risk of all the slasher mystery stuff feeling like a complete after thought. Not a bad time at all.

  • Happy Death Day

    Happy Death Day

    ★★★½

    Everybody thank Christopher Landon and Jessica Rothe for kick starting the current bountiful new age of slashers with this delightful piece of bubblegum horror. Still remains a pretty savvy dissection of the kind of sinful fun you can find in the repetition and cycles of the genre. The canted angle hospital hallway chase is primo 👌.

  • Boyz n the Hood

    Boyz n the Hood

    ★★★★½

    Outstanding debut from John Singleton (at 23 no less!); not just a great first film, but more importantly a cultural touchstone that begs to be revisited. A blistering manifesto that's so incredibly thoughtful about the actions and reactions of living in an unending cycle of violence; the way Singleton uses melodrama positions it coming not from a place of angst, but instead from increasing pressure from all kinds of inescapable forces. The droning of helicopters, the blast of a gunshot,…

  • Less Than Zero

    Less Than Zero

    ★★★½

    You could’ve easily told me afterwards that this was some unofficial sequel to Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and I would not have thought twice about the validity of your statement. That character was one bump of coke away from an after school special. 

    Also how has James Spader not played the literal Devil yet? That’s something that would seem right up his alley, especially here when he’s peak piece of shit. Slicked back hair, white bathing suit, sloppy steaks, white couch. You know…the works.

  • Paper Moon

    Paper Moon

    ★★★★½

    Tatum O’Neal acting circles around everyone involved by simply taking a drag of a cigarette and scowling. Nothing but respect.

  • Caveat

    Caveat

    ★★★½

    Made me audibly let out one of the longest nopes I’ve ever uttered. Light on scares, but heavy on atmosphere and setting that feed into a constrictive sense of dread that make the few that are here have the jolt of an icy finger running across your back. Your patience will undoubtably wear thin as you get lost in the endless maze of creaking floorboards and peeling wallpaper the film has constructed, yet part of the fun of Caveat is slowly peering at what might be around the corners or even coming up right behind you.

  • Gunpowder Milkshake

    Gunpowder Milkshake

    ★★★

    Takes the tired trend of pop song scored ultra-choreographed hyper-violent fight scenes almost to the breaking point, fraying the traditional revenge movie into a series of cleverly staged action that only hits on a very base level of excitement. It’s all fun and games in these tooth ache inducing sets when Karen Gillan is mowing down baddies, until the moment the film tries for deeper character beats and it falls with a thick and hearty splat all over the pristine floors of its 50s diner. Visually and kinetically dynamic, but so hollow.

  • Fear Street: 1666

    Fear Street: 1666

    ★★★★

    What a way to close this series! Easily the best of the crop, simply for the way it manages to actually be about something larger and the ways in which it enriches and plays off of the installments that came before it. Repositioning the central queerness at the heart of the first film in colonial times allows Janiak to hurl fire and brimstone at a horror much more sinister and elemental than the toy box of slasher villains previously used.…

  • Space Jam: A New Legacy

    Space Jam: A New Legacy

    ★★

    Don Cheadle innocent, doing the absolute most in this slop. We’ve really reverted back to that dark age of Friedberg and Seltzer style comedy where references and cameos pass for story. This thankfully isn’t as egregious as watching Jack Sparrow getting hit in the nards repeatedly by the minions, but the decision to make the villain an evil algorithm whose goal is to make unholy mashups of popular icons while also having an extended sequence composed of The Tunes inserted…