Dylan has written 35 reviews for films rated ★★★ during 2021.

  • Nightbooks

    Nightbooks

    ★★★

    Feels predestined to become an autumnal classic (almost algorithmically, but let’s just not today) through the sheer passion you can feel for the genre in every scene and a willingness not to talk down to its younger audience. It’s still a horror movie with the bumpers firmly on that doesn’t at anytime feel like it will jerk off the rails into a destination too scary or traumatizing, but there’s plenty of unsettling imagery that’ll send even a light shiver down…

  • Boss Level

    Boss Level

    ★★★

    An action vehicle out of time, bolstered by its main performance while carrying all the baggage of 80s movies past. Just a real smart aleck about genre conventions in between an uncontrollable amount of Tim Allen noise machismo, at least for my taste.

  • Superhost

    Superhost

    ★★★

    Sufficiently splits the difference between its skewering of the chipper gig economy and the wide-eyed slack jawed content creators that gunk up YouTube, arriving not in a place of revolutionary enlightenment about the subjects, but in a basic understanding that being on and available 24/7 suuuuuuuuuccks. Grace Phipps’ crazy is almost too good of a flavor of unhinged for the rather stately way the director wants to build tension, but everything more or less comes together in the final 15 minutes or so.

  • Cruella

    Cruella

    ★★★

    Already gets a ton of mileage out of forgoing being yet another 4K remaster of a beloved classic in favor of staging raucous heists and Banksyesque antics, with eye popping costumes and Stone doing a tremendous pantomime of a wretched girl boss to boot, but at the end of the day it’s still a mega corporation commodifying an anti-establishment culture to commodify easily one of the most sinister villains in their library. Leaves a slight bitter taste to an otherwise fizzy fashion show caper.

  • Bad Ben

    Bad Ben

    ★★★

    You won’t find a better testament to just going out and shooting the damn thing than this little movie here. Genre fans might give this a little more leeway than your average joe, this is after all an hour and a half of a portly Jersey man walking about his house, but if you have even the smallest interest in filmmaking or have made a short film yourself, I think you’ll find yourself continually charmed in the ways this man…

  • Throw Momma From the Train

    Throw Momma From the Train

    ★★★

    Tale as old as time: petulant schmucks taking the wrong lessons from classic films. Lots to love, even when the icy comedy fizzles out towards the end in favor of one of the most agreeable endings ever. Spoilers for a 34 year old movie, but everyone just gets to go on vacation! Delightfully insane anticlimax!

  • Poms

    Poms

    ★★★

    If for some odd reason you liken your movies to drinks (a nice taunt thriller as a Bourdeaux, the latest Marvel movie as the newest flavor of Mountain Dew, and so on…), think of this film as water. Not too cold, not too hot, just a perfect room temp water. Nothing too crazy or offensive, just seasoned actors having a grand old time ribbing the banality of retirement. Very refreshing under the right circumstances.

  • Don't Tell a Soul

    Don't Tell a Soul

    ★★★

    One of those few unfortunate movies that thinks it’s so much more clever than it actually is, but still a pretty neat streaming discovery if you’re willing to look for it (it’s free on the Roku Channel, go ham).

  • 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…

  • 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.

  • Cold Pursuit

    Cold Pursuit

    ★★★

    Laura Dern straight up disappears from the movie after 20 minutes and still receives second billing. Her power.

  • Fear Street: 1978

    Fear Street: 1978

    ★★★

    A very meat and potatoes summer camp slasher that doesn’t aim for reinvention or reflection, but for good old fashioned atmosphere and titillation. I can’t help but feel underwhelmed in the face of all the murderous glut that Part one offered, but what Part two sets out to accomplish it does so with flying colors. A few gnarly kills with little nuggets of Fier lore peppered throughout in the absolute weakest Friday the 13th pastiche imaginable. Nothing more, nothing less.